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Introduction to the Anglo Saxons ( A.D.)

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Presentation on theme: "Introduction to the Anglo Saxons ( A.D.)"— Presentation transcript:

1 Introduction to the Anglo Saxons (449-1066 A.D.)

2 There were 7 groups of peoples who invaded and settled in Great Britain throughout its history:
Iberians (Spain) Celts (indigenous people from British Isles) Romans (Italy)) Angles (Germany) Saxons ( northern Germany & the Netherlands) Vikings (Norway, Sweden, and Denmark) Normans (northern France)

3 The Spirit of the Celts When Greek travelers visited modern Great Britain in the 4 B.C., the group of warriors they found there were called… Celts Brythons - Britons

4 The Spirit of the Celts The Celts followed a religion known as
Animism or “spirit” - They saw spirits in all natural things --ponds, trees, fire, & thunder These spirits controlled all aspects of existence & had to be constantly satisfied.

5 The Spirit of the Celts Celtic priests were called Druids
Intermediaries between the gods & people Druids memorized the history of their people & the secrets of their faith Ritualistic dances and human sacrifices were also used.

6 The Spirit of the Celts Some think a strange, stone-like structure on the Salisbury Plain known as Stonehenge was used by the Druids for religious rites. Some say it is an ancient clock.

7 The Celtic Heroes and Heroines
Sir Thomas Malory was greatly influenced by the legends of Celtic heroes Example: Le Morte D’arthur – based on a Celtic warrior named Arthur Celtic legends are full of strong women Example: Queen Maeve of Connacht Boadicea --Legends include fantastic animals, incredible adventures, and magic.

8 Boadicea Fierce female tribal warrior who rose up against the invading Romans but was ultimately defeated. Boudica was a striking looking woman. - "She was very tall, the glance of her eye most fierce; her voice harsh. A great mass of the reddest hair fell down to her hips. Her appearance was terrifying." - Definitely a lady to be noticed! The Roman governor killed her husband and publicly flogged and her in addition to her daughters being raped by Roman slaves! Other Iceni chiefs suffered in a like manner and their families were treated like slaves. Not surprisingly these outrages provoked the Iceni, Trinobantes and other tribes to rebel against the Romans- Boadicea led that rebellion

9 Celtic Warriors Used a blue dye known as woad to give them such a terrifying appearance in battle. They were very tall and athletically built Fought naked Carried long spears Used a fierce battle cry to intimidate their opponents Fought to show how brave they were, not to gain land or riches

10 The Romans: The Great Administrators
Julius Caesar led the invasion of Briton in 55 B.C. Introduced two architectural additions to Briton Roads Defensive wall – Hadrian’s Wall Approximately 70 mile long wall was built by the Roman Emperor Hadrian to keep the 'barbarian' Picts from Scotland out of Roman Britain.

11 The Romans: The Great Administrators
Christianity became a unifying force in Britain which caused the “old ways” of the Celts to vanish Romans evacuated Britain in 409 A.D., without leaving a central government there Britain became a country of separate clans or tribes This made Britain so weak after the Roman invasion that it was susceptible to pagan invasions.

12 The Anglo-Saxons Sweep Ashore
In the middle of the 5th century Britain was attacked by Angles (Germany) Saxons (northern Germany & Netherlands) Jutes (Denmark) -Anglo-Saxon became the dominant language after these invasions The new name of Britain after these invasions Engla land or England

13 The Anglo-Saxons Sweep Ashore
The Celts retreated to Wales as a result of the invasions from the north Arthur – a Welsh chieftain – developed in legend as Britain’s “once and future king” Name of novel about Arthur’s life by T.H. White

14 Unifying Forces: Alfred the Great and Christianity
King Alfred of Wessex was the Anglo-Saxon king who led his people to victory against the invading Danes & established England as one nation.

15 Unifying Forces: Alfred the Great and Christianity
The Irish and continental missionaries were responsible for converting the Anglo-Saxon people to Christianity. They used established pagan holidays to partner with Christian holidays to make the conversion easier.

16 Unifying Forces: Alfred the Great and Christianity
Three things Christianity provided for the Anglo-Saxon people: A common faith A common system of morality/ right conduct A connection to England and Europe

17 Unifying Forces: Alfred the Great and Christianity
William, Duke of Normandy, defeated the Danes in Britain in 1066 – Battle of Hastings Also known as William the Conqueror

18 What Does Anglo-Saxon Mean?
Anglo Saxon society developed from kinship groups led by a strong chief People farmed, maintained local government, and created fine crafts especially metalwork. Christianity eventually replaced old warrior religion, linking England & continental Europe. Monasteries were centers fro learning & preserved works from the older, oral tradition. English – not just the Church’s Latin- gained respect a as a written language.

19 Anglo-Saxon Life as Described by the findings at Sutton Hoo
Warfare was a dominant influence on daily life Law and order was the responsibility of the leader of a group- family, clan, tribe, or kingdom. Fame and survival only came from loyalty to the leader (comitatus) Loyalty grew out of a need to protect the group from the enemy

20 Role of Women in Anglo-Saxon Culture
They had rights Could inherit & own property. Christian women could join religious communities (convents) & even became powerful abbesses.

21 Anglo-Saxon Religion: Gods for Warriors
Warrior god Dark Fatalistic Believed the greatest honor was to die in battle and go to Valhalla – warrior heaven Important virtues- bravery, loyalty, generosity, & friendship

22 Anglo-Saxon Religion: Gods for Warriors
Odin (pronounced Woden) was the most important Norse god He represented death, poetry, and magic Thor or Thunor was the god of thunder His symbols- hammer and swastika

23 Anglo-Saxon Religion: Gods for Warriors
Dragon (firedrake)– Significant figure in Anglo-Saxon mythology personifies “death the devourer” Guards the greave mound of warriors’ ashes and treasure

24 The Bards: Singing of Gods and Heroes
Scops or bards told stories of Anglo-Saxon history and heroes through oral tradition – memorizing stories & passing them along by word of mouth Scops were very important in Anglo-Saxon culture The only thing that could help an Anglo-Saxon’s memory live on after death was to have his story retold in poetry.

25 A Light from Ireland Patricus (Patrick) was the man responsible for converting all of Celtic Ireland to Christianity in 432 A.D. Taught pagans the concept of the Trinity using a shamrock (3-leaf clover) Three petals or leaves but one plant God, the Father God, the Son God, the Holy Spirit Known to us as Saint Patrick

26 A Light from Ireland Golden Age in Ireland-
Irish monks founded monasteries that became sanctuaries for learning for refugees Monasteries served as centers for learning during the time period

27 The Christian Monasteries: The Ink Froze
Scriptorium: A writing room used to copy manuscripts by hand Monks wrote in Latin, the language of the Catholic Church as a result, it became the language of serious study in England

28 The Rise of the English Language
King Alfred had a c chronical written of England’s history from its earliest days until 1154 A.D. Anglo Saxon Chronicle As a result, English began to gain respect as a language of culture Only then did the Old English stories & poetry preserved by the monks come to be recognized as great works of literature.

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