Presentation on theme: "449-1066 A.D. Grade 10 HonorsMr. Esner. The Britons were a group of early inhabitants of Britain. They left no writings so very little is known about."— Presentation transcript:
The Britons were a group of early inhabitants of Britain. They left no writings so very little is known about them. They were conquered by the Romans in the first century A.D. The Romans retreated around the year 410 A.D. to return to home to protect the capital. The Britons were left unprotected and fell victim to raids and attacks from surrounding tribes.
Around 449 A.D. it is said the first Germanic people crossed the North Sea to Britain. They brought with them their language, poetic tales, and history in oral form. Three groups were the first to arrive. The Jutes, followed by the Angles and Saxons. Britons battle and retreat into Wales. Perhaps the origin of the King Arthur legend. Germanic tribes create Anglo-Saxon England which last until 1066 A.D.
Anglo-Saxon England was divided several different kingdoms. Though these kingdoms often fought, values such as courage, loyalty, courtesy, and generosity were shared. Loyalty to a ruler and bravery when fighting for him was perceived to be of the highest importance. Comitatus is the bond or code between a warrior and his ruler. In return, the ruler would reward the warrior with land, compensation, and privileges.
There was a strong belief in fate as passed down through stories and in response to a short life expectancy. It was also believed though that through courage and heroic actions one could challenge and control fate. Many words from this period survive including several days of the week which are derived from the names of Anglo- Saxon gods. Tuesday from the god of war, Tiw. Wednesday from the chief Teutonic god, Woden. Thursday from Thor, the god of thunder. Frigga, the goddess of the home, is the origin of the word Friday.
Christianity was introduced early in Britain. (314 A.D.?) The church was a major contributor in bringing the various kingdoms together. United the English church with Roman Christianity. Also helped to make connections with other countries throughout Europe.
Stories and poems told orally. Nothing was written down until much later. The professional poet, or scop, would recite these poems (while occasionally adding personalized touches to them) often accompanied by a harp. The scop held a very important role in society as both entertainer and historian. Rhythm and literary devices served as a way to remember the long poems.
Elegiac tradition: mourning the passing of better times. Pagan stories and poems were replaced with Christian beliefs. Introduction of rhyme into English poetry from churchmen copying hymns. Venerable Bede (673-735)- One of the earliest churchmen to write down history and poetry.(in Latin) Alfred the Great- Early English king. First to record in and promote the use of written English, despite common practices.
Alliteration- The repetition of the first consonant sound. Think: Peter piper picked a peck of pickled peppers. Caesura: (Latin: "a cutting") A break or pause in a line of poetry, dictated, usually, by the natural rhythm of the language. Kenning: A device for introducing descriptive color or for suggesting associations without distracting attention from the essential statement. [Cuddon offers the following instances of Old English kennings: a) helmberend—"helmet bearer" = "warrior" b) beadoleoma—"battle light" = "flashing sword" c) swansrad—"swan road" = "sea" Essentially, then, a kenning is a compact metaphor that functions as a name or epithet; it is also, in its more complex forms, a riddle in miniature.]
Help! Kennings are word challenges. http://kevan.org/kenning