The Anglo-Saxon Period and The Middle Ages Theme: The Heroic and the Humble

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1 The Anglo-Saxon Period and The Middle Ages Theme: The Heroic and the Humble

2 Before the Anglo-Saxons Roman emperor Claudius ordered conquest of Britain in AD 43 Britain considered a province in the large Roman Empire Many parts of Britain were full of warring tribes Difficult to control such a large piece of land Roman soldiers and traders brought Christianity to Britain around AD 300

3 Roman Mosaic in Britain

4 Roman Gatehouse in Britain

5 The Beginning of English history Believed to have begun in 449 with the invasion of 3 Germanic tribes (Angles, Saxons, and Jutes) Destruction of Roman influence, including Christianity Angle-land formed - small tribal kingdoms - no written language - supported themselves through farming and hunting

6

7 Anglo Saxon helmet

8 An Anglo-Saxon Hall

9 An Anglo-Saxon farmstead

10 Ruins of Jarrow Monastery

11

12 The Coming of Christianity In AD 596, attempt to convert Anglo- Saxons to Christianity By 650: most of England is Christian Though many remained intense believers in God, others still held on to their pagan beliefs and traditions

13 Anglo-Saxon cross

14 Thunor for Anglo-Saxons (also known as Thor)

15 Anglo-Saxon influence today? Some examples - Days of the week: Tuesday: comes from the Anglo Saxon god of battle - Tiw or Tig and was originally Tiwesdaeg Wednesday: comes from the Anglo Saxon God of war - Woden and was originally Wodnesdaeg Thursday: comes from the Anglo Saxon god of thunder Thunor. This is very similar to the Norse Viking god, Thor, with his big hammer and was originally Dunresdaeg.

16 The Danish Invasions 8 th & 9 th Centuries: Danes and Norsemen attacked Britain Most of England had fallen to invaders until Alfred the Great led his warriors to victory over the Danes Eventually won back all of England from the Danes

17 Danish Viking Ship

18 Statue of Alfred the Great

19 The Middle Ages AD 1066 Death of King Edward Fight for the English Throne Harold II selected by elders as king Duke of Normandy laid claim to throne Fought and defeated Anglo-Saxons (Battle of Hastings) and became King William I (also known as William the conqueror)

20 Feudalism and Chivalry Feudalism Land parceled out to lords who supported the Norman king Lords then granted land to vassals in exchange for loyalty/oath of military duty Chivalry Special honor code for knights Knights strove to be honorable, generous, brave, skillful in battle, respectful to women, and helpful to the weak

21 Feudalism Note: though the peasants were the largest group in society, they had the least power

22 Chivalry

23 14 th Century Dark time in English History Edward III warned against France Black Death killed nearly a third of the English people Rival Popes caused a decline in respect for the Church

24 Literature of Anglo-Saxon Times 2 major influences 1) Germanic Traditions of the Anglo-Saxons 2) Christian Traditions of the Roman Church

25 1) Germanic Traditions of the Anglo-Saxons Germanic language Mixture of various Germanic dialects + Old English Old English (often looks like a foreign language)

26 1) Germanic Traditions of the Anglo-Saxons, cont. Warrior culture Poems and stories depict a society like the Anglo- Saxons Military and tribal loyalties Bravery of warriors Generosity of rulers Oral literary tradition Songs and stories often sung and told about the valiant struggles of heroic warriors More than just entertainment provided a model for living and a form of immortality they could aspire to Note: all of these provided the foundation for early written literature in Old English

27 2) Christian Teachings Religion Spread of Christianity throughout Anglo- Saxon England Christian monks established libraries and schools within their monasteries Emphasis on written word» Especially the bible Work of the monks resulted in the preservation of much of the Old English literature that survives today

28 Questions? Review pages in literature book for more information on Anglo-Saxon and Medieval England

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