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ANGLO-SAXON BACKGROUND 449-1066

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Title: ANGLO-SAXON BACKGROUND 449-1066


1
ANGLO-SAXON BACKGROUND 449-1066
2
THE BRITONS EXPERIENCE
  • We start with a clan/tribe known as the Britons
  • They lived in a time where people owed an
    allegiance to a lord in return for protection.
  • This was a time of war, movement, and chaos

3
THE BRITONS EXPERIENCE
PRE-ANGLO-SAXON PERIOD A. 800-600 BC -
Britons battle Gaels and Celts (Greek for
Barbarian) B. 43-410 - Britons battle the
Romans ANGLO-SAXON PERIOD A. 410-449
Britain gets invaded from lots of tribes
Constant Upheaval! a. PICTS
keep pillaging b. SCOTS Old
English raider, from Ireland c. 442
Britains invite SAXONS in alliance but are
betrayed for the Scots.
d. 449 more GERMANIC invasions (Jutes,
Frisians, Angles, Saxons)
e. 787 Viking attacks start pillage, loot,
burn everything!
4

The Britons get invaded by EVERYONE
5
POINTS OF INTEREST
  • I. 500 AD historical King Arthur
  • wins British victory
  • II. 597 - St. Augustine founds Christian
    monastery
  • First king of Anglo-Saxon England converted to
    Christianity! (King Aethelbert I of Kent -
    Jute)
  • Gradual Christianization by Roman and Irish
    missionaries - 7th century with persistent pagan
    customs as well
  • ( Christianity flourished during the Roman
    Empire, never left when it fell)

6
POINTS OF INTEREST
  • IV. 849-899 King Alfred, recognized as king of
    all England
  • Revival of learning oral tradition turns to
    written language for all

V. 1042-1066 Edward the Confessor (last Anglo
Saxon king, deeply religious) beat up by William
the Conquerors Norman invasion at the Battle of
Hastings
7
OLD ENGLISH
  • NO WRITING Writing went out of style with
    collapse of Roman empire. Only the church had a
    few documents.
  • Oral tradition / scops
  • 2) Christian missionaries taught and wrote
    entirely in Latin, Old English was vulgar
  • 3) Language is predominantly
  • Anglo-Saxon (German),
  • Some Celtic/Gaelic words,
  • Latin (450 words)
  • Old Norse (50 words)

8
OLD ENGLISH
  • OLD ENGLISH VERBS
  • Cyssan cyste cyssed (kiss)
  • Ridan rad ridden (ride)
  • Drincan dranc drunken (drink)
  • Sprecan sprac sprecen (speak)
  • Fyllan fylde fylled (fill)
  • Cnyttan cnytte cnytted (knit)

9
CHRISTIANITY VS. PAGANISM
  • PAGAN
  • - Warrior culture
  • - Loyalty to many gods
  • Tell stories to teach lessons.
  • COMITATUS loyalty to lord, do
  • anything for him (loyalty rewarded with
    fame/riches, mead hall),
  • - Exile worst punishment
  • CHRISTIAN
  • Spiritual culture - faith in heavens and
    morality
  • Loyalty to a God
  • Bible

10
PAGAN WORLD
  • The world is believed to be set up in different
    dimensions
  • Gods (Asgard) above
  • the underworld (Hel) below
  • the Earth plane (Midgard)

11
CHRISTIANITY VS. PAGANISM
  • PAGAN
  • WYRD You are powerless in life, with no real
    choice. It is a dangerous world ruled by FATE
    (predetermined)
  • You should have the courage to fight/die early.
    You live a a good life by achieving fame/glory
    through deeds, riches.
  • CHRISTIAN
  • PROVIDENCE People follow
  • Christian qualities and obey
  • commandments in hopes of going
  • to a better after life.
  • You have the free will to live a good life.
    Suffering you endure will pay off in the glorious
    afterlife with God.

12
THINK ABOUT IT
  • What happens when you die?

13
THINK ABOUT IT
  • How do you PROVE you go to heaven for an
    afterlife?
  • How does the church convince so many people of
    the
  • time to buy into
  • Christianity? Why
  • might it sound
  • appealing?

14
ANGLO-SAXON RECAP
  • Warrior Culture Britons lived in clans that
    owed allegiance to a lord in return for honor,
    fame, and gold. (comitatus)
  • Time of war, chaos, and transition.
  • Everything is passed on through the oral
    tradition.
  • Old English is made up of Anglo-Saxon, Celtic,
    Latin Old Norse.
  • Revival of Education
  • Pagan culture trying to be turned Christian by
    missionaries and priests.
  • Pagan views many gods, WYRD, warrior culture
  • Christian views one god, PROVIDENCE, spiritual
    culture

15
ANGLO-SAXON LITERATURE
  • All passed down through an oral tradition until
    the mid 10th century (900s). It was caused by a
    church reform where monks were in charge of
    copying manuscripts.
  • 1) RIDDLES entertainment/education
  • 2) PROSE
  • Caedmon Hymn of Creation, oldest vernacular
    work (Latin)
  • Bede Ecclesiastical History of the English
    People (Latin)
  • Used historians, other books, travelers, never
    left more
  • than 75 miles!!
  • Anglo-Saxon Chronicles begin writing down
    history in Old English so it was accessible to all

16
Strike me the bright-edged, battle-sharp
Handiwork of smiths bites in battle.
Always I must await the harder encounter
For I could never find in the world any
Of the race of healers who heal hard wounds
With roots and herbs. So I suffer
Sword-slash and death-wound day and night.
I am the lone wood in the warp of battle,
Wounded by iron, broken by blade,
Weary of war. Often I see
Battle-rush, rage, fierce fight flaring--
I hold no hope for help to come
Before I fall finally with warriors
Or feel the flame. The hard hammer-leavings
17
Exeter Riddle Answer
A Shield
  • Wounded by iron, broken by blades
  • No comfort in herbal healing
  • handiwork of smiths
  • Sword slash and death wound day and night

18
As laced with slaughter, I spit out
The death-blend I swallowed before.
What whistles from my belly does not easily pass,
And the man who seizes this sudden cup
Pays with his life for the long, last drink.
Unwound I will not obey any man
Bound tight, I serve. Say what I am.
Wob is my name twisted about--
I'm a strange creature shaped for battle.
When I bend and the battle-sting snakes
Through my belly, I am primed to drive off
The death-stroke. When my lord and tormentor
Releases my limbs, I am long again,
19
Exeter Riddle Answer
A bow!!!
  • Wob is my name twisted about
  • I spit out the death-blend I swallowed before.
  • Unwound I will not obey any man Bound tight, I
    serve.

20
LITERATURE POETRY
  • HEROIC tales of warriors and battles
  • Pagan/Warrior culture FAME/WYRD
  • Beowulf
  • ELEGAIC lamenting the death/loss
  • of loved ones,glory, or gold
  • Christian ideas, spirituality
  • Happy past / desolate present
  • Seafarer and Wanderer

POEMS COME FROM BOOK OF EXETER
21
POETRY TERMS
  • 1) ORAL TRADITION originally
  • 2) Typically narrative
  • 3) Regular rhythm - Usually 4 strong beats,
    consistency
  • for memorization and speaking
  • Ex. Now there are no rulers, no emperors
  • Kenning metaphorical phrase used to replace a
    concrete noun (embellished/figurative)
  • EX. Whales home sea
  • Rats nest ?
    Sea-Steed ?
  • Brow Star ?

22
POETRY TERMS
  • 5) CAESURA natural pause in a line of poetry
  • Ex. With gift in the mead-hall and
    comfort for grief
  • ALLITERATION repetition of sounds in a sequence
    of words
  • (Tongue twisters Peter Piper picked a
    peck of pickled peppers)

23
POETRY TERMS
  • PARAPHRASE break down lengthy portions of text
    to find strictly meaning, put in your own words
    in a shorter manner
  • Advantage understand meaning
  • Disadvantage time consuming

24
I am a wonderful help to women,
The hope of something to come. I harm
No citizen except my slayer.
Rooted I stand on a high bed.
I am shaggy below. Sometimes the beautiful
Peasant's daughter, an eager-armed,
Proud woman grabs my body,
Rushes my red skin, holds me hard,
Claims my head. The curly-haired
Woman who catches me fast will feel
Our meeting. Her eye will be wet.
25
Exeter Riddle Answer
An onion!
  • I harm no citizen except my slayer
  • I am shaggy below.
  • Her eye will be wet.
  • wonderful help to women

26
Now a man will strip my bonelike skin
From the sides of my body with a bright blade
And bolt my flesh, relish me raw
A quick cuisine--crack to jaw.
Suckled by the sea, sheltered near shore
Cradled in the cold catch of waves,
Footless and fixed--often I offered
To the sea-stream a stretch of mouth.
27
Exeter Riddle Answer
An oyster!!!
  • Suckled by the sea,
  • sheltered near shore
  • Footless
  • relish me raw

28
HERO
  • What does our generation/world define a hero as
    today? What are his/her characteristics? Who
    are examples of a hero?

29
HERO
  • DEFINITION a man of distinguished courage
    or ability, admired for his brave deeds
    and noble qualities.
  • NEED FOR A HERO
  • Changes with time depending on the
    culture/climate
  • We often look at major societal problems to
    create or embellish who we should look up to

30
HEROES vs. villains
How has the idea of a hero changed over time?
Consider who he/she fought and what they stood
for?
  • ANCIENT GREEK ANGLO-SAXON
  • Brave warriors fought for their country and
    lord/king against outside
  • Gladiator, 300, William Wallace
  • RENAISSANCE
  • Knights of the Round Table fought against people
    who didnt follow the law and to protect the king
    or ladies.
  • Robin Hood fought against the tyrants of the
    world.
  • WWII

31
HEROES vs. villains
How has the idea of a hero changed over time?
Consider who he/she fought and what they stood
for?
  • 1930s -
  • Creation of Batman, Superman, and early Marvel
    Comics
  • 1960s
  • TODAY
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