The Anglo-Saxons, Synthesis and Achievement: Synthesis and Achievement

Front Cover
J. Douglas Woods, David A.E. Pelteret
Wilfrid Laurier Univ. Press, 1985 - Education - 177 pages
1 Review

The popular notion that sees the Anglo-Saxon era as “The Dark Ages” perhaps has tended to obscure for many people the creations and strengths of that time. This collection, in examining many aspects of pre-Norman Britain, helps to illuminate how Anglo-Saxon society contributed to the continuity of knowledge between the ancient world and the modern world. But as well, it posits a view of that society in its own distinctive terms to show how it developed as a synthesis of radically different cultures.

The Bayeux Tapestry is examined for its underlying political motivations; the study of Old English literature is extended to such works as laws, charters, apocryphal literature, saints’ lives and mythologies, and many of these are studied for the insight they provide into the social structures of the Anglo-Saxons. Other essays examine both the institution of slavery and the use of Germanic warrior terminology in Old Saxon as a contribution towards the descriptive analysis of that society’s social groupings. The book also presents a perspective on the Christian church that is usually overlooked by historians: that its existence was continuous and influential from Roman times, and that it was greatly affected by the Celtic Christian church long after the latter was thought to have disintegrated.


What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.


History or Propaganda?
2 The Boundaries of Old English Literature
The Heros Pride in Old English Hagiography
4 Domestic Peace and Public Order in AngloSaxon Law
Oswald and Cuthbert
6 The Celtic Church in AngloSaxon Times
7 AngloSaxon Use of the Apocryphal Gospel
Some Literary Implications of Serpentine Decoration
9 Slavery in AngloSaxon England
10 Germanic Warrior Terms in Old Saxon
Bibliographical Essay

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

References to this book

About the author (1985)

J. Douglas Woods is an Associate Professor of Linguistics at Scarborough College in the University of Toronto.

David A.E. Pelteret is Senior Research Fellow in the Department of History at King’s College London. He is also the author of Slavery in Early Mediaeval England from the Reign of Alfred until the Twelfth Century and Anglo–Saxon History: Basic Readings.

Bibliographic information