Aetheling, also spelt Ætheling, Atheling or Etheling, was an Old English term (æþeling) used in Anglo-Saxon England to designate princes of the royal dynasty who were eligible for the kingship.
Aetheling is an Old English and Old Saxon compound of aethele, æþele or (a)ethel, meaning “noble family”, and -ing, which means “belonging to.” It is etymologically related to the modern German words Adel, “nobility”, and adelig or adlig, “noble”, and also to the modern swedish word “ättling” (“descendant”.) It was usually rendered in Latin as clito.
From the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle:
A.D. 1057. This year came Edward Etheling, son of King Edmund, to this land, and soon after died. His body is buried within St. Paul’s minster at London. He was brother’s son to King Edward. King Edmund was called Ironside for his valour. This etheling King Knute had sent into Hungary, to betray him; but he there grew in favour with good men, as God granted him, and it well became him;