2008 NTDWA

As Rome began to decline it found it increasingly difficult to defend the empire.
Finally in 410 A.D., after over 350 years in Britain, Rome was forced to withdraw
its legions, leaving the Britons to defend themselves against the Picts from the
north and the raiders from the sea.

Jutes

In 449 A.D., in an effort to repulse the Picts, the Britons sought the aid of some
bands of Jutes, who agreed to fight in return for land.  The Jutes were a
Germanic people who inhabited what is now Schleswig in northern Germany.
(The Jutland Peninsula of Germany and Denmark is named for them.)  These
Jutes were led by their chieftain, Hengist.

Soon, however, the Britons found that the Jutes were as big a threat as the
Picts and Irish raiders.  Quarreling and then fighting took place as the Jutes
spread inland from their coastal lands in Kent.  A second horde of Jutes landed
and established themselves on the Isle of Wight.  They too, began attacking the
Britons.

Saxons

Next came the Saxons, another Germanic tribe from Saxony in northern
Germany.  The first group led by AElla and his three sons began landing in
477 A.D. and like the Jutes battled for the land.  About 18 years later Cerdic
and his son Cynric came to Britain leading another invasion of Saxons.  (It was
in the struggle against Cerdic that the British King Arthur acquired his fame.)

Angles ("English")

At the same time the Saxons were arriving the Angles were invading the central
part of Britain (mainly in Northumbria and East Anglia).  They were a Germanic
tribe from the Schleswig-Holstein region of northern Germany.

From the Angles come the names "England" and "English."  The modern word
England is from Englaland--"land of the Angles" and English is from Englisc--
"of the Angles."  (The Angles are sometimes referred to as the "English" but
that definition ignores the fact that the modern English are Angles, Saxons, and
Jutes.)

Angle-Saxon-Jute Conquest

Unlike the Romans who only took 35 years to conquer all of Britain except the
(Scottish) Highlands, the Angles, Saxons, and Jutes fought for more than two
centuries before they controlled even half of the island.  It was a bitter struggle,
but the Germanic tribes were thorough.  They killed or drove out the Britons
and erased all traces of them including their language, customs, and religion.

Christianity wholly disappeared under these Germanic tribes.  Later when
missionaries arrived from Ireland and continental Europe they found a
Teutonic people, speaking a Teutonic language, and worshiping Teutonic gods.

Many Kings

From the arrival of the first Jutes in 449 A.D. until well into the 10th century
England was divided into numerous kingdoms of various sizes and power.  Wales
was not subdued and brought under the English king until King Edward I
"Longshanks" (1272-1307).  King James I/VI (1603-1625) was the first ruler
of England, Scotland and Wales.  It wasn't until 1707 that the kingdoms of
England and Scotland and the principality of Wales were brought under one
government.


BACK

2007 Bob Parrish