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View Diary: Ancient England: The Anglo-Saxons (116 comments)

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  •  Oh... (8+ / 0-)

    Vortigern is the one who can be blamed (or credited) with the Saxon "invasion."  [At least according to Gildas, et alia.]

    Vortigern first invited the Saxons to Britain.  They were followed by others, very often farmers.

    The later Vikings were also farmers, traders, merchants, and the like.  They only went a-viking in the summer months after crops had been planted in the spring.  They went home in time for fall harvest.  Once lands were found, some emigrated to the new lands to become farmers, traders, craftspeople....  The Norwegians have a countryside ripe for leaving because in the whole country only some 10% of the land is arable and can be used for farming.  The rest is mountains where few can live except at the edges of those scenic fjords and they don't have much land to actually farm.  The seas have fish, of course, and they have multiple ways of preserving fish for later consumption.  When they have enough food to eat for a few decades, they overpopulate and stretch the land's ability to grow crops and graze cattle to provide enough food..., so it's a matter of finding someplace else to live or face starvation.

    This all gets into the stuff of Arthurian Legend and Beowulf.

    I'm not sure how much the myths and legends can be separated from facts (other than identifying artifacts from the period).

    It is sooooooooo difficult to sort it all out in my own mind primarily because the art historian in me loves the artifacts from that period, too.  The craftsmanship is exquisitely wrought and stunningly beautiful.

    I'm sick of attempts to steer this nation from principles evolved in The Age of Reason to hallucinations derived from illiterate herdsmen. ~ Crashing Vor

    by NonnyO on Sun Sep 08, 2013 at 02:12:59 PM PDT

    [ Parent ]

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