Today, Sussex is administratively divided into the counties West Sussex (1989 km², capital Chichester ) and East Sussex (1759 km², capital Lewes ) as well as the area of the City of Brighton and Hove , which has been an independent urban district ( Unitary Authority ) since 1997 .
The name means southern area of the Saxons (cf. Essex , Middlesex , Wessex ) and has been traceable since 477. The Kingdom of Sussex was one of the minor kingdoms of the Anglo-Saxons , but came under the dominance of the neighboring Kingdom of Wessex in the course of the 8th century , in which it was absorbed in 823.
Even before the Normans invaded in 1066, Sussex had close ties to the opposite Norman mainland. Hastings , the site of the first successful battle at the beginning of the Norman conquest of England , is in this area.
The hereditary British title of nobility of the Earl of Sussex had existed since the Middle Ages . Sussex was a ceremonial county until 1974, when West Sussex and East Sussex have performed this function. On May 19, 2018, Queen Elizabeth II named her grandson Prince Henry Charles Albert David of Wales , popularly Prince Harry, as Duke of Sussex ahead of his wedding .
Today's Sussex is mostly flat, with the ridges of the South Downs and Weald as the highest peaks. The rivers are short and of little importance. It lies long on the coast, which is also the largest economic factor. In addition to Brighton , Bognor Regis and Eastbourne are important seaside resorts. In the interior, fruit growing and cattle breeding predominate.
The biggest cities in Sussex are Bexhill-on-Sea , Burgess Hill , Brighton , Chichester , Crawley , Eastbourne , East Grinstead , Hastings , Haywards Heath , Horsham , Hove and Worthing . Other towns are Arundel , Battle , Crowborough , Hailsham , Lewes , Midhurst , Petworth and Uckfield . Although Lancing is a village, it is important because of its high population.