Σάββατο, 29 Οκτωβρίου 2016

10 things you should know about the Anglo-Saxon warriors


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While comprising a group of Germanic tribes from continental Europe, the Anglo-Saxons established themselves in Great Britain from the 5th century. This consequent Anglo-Saxon epoch (from roughly 449 – 1066 AD) led to the creation of the English nation and the resurgence of Christianity in Britain. And even beyond culture and religion, one of the lasting legacies of these Germanic people is their contribution to the ambit of language – what we know today as Old English. However in this article we have decided to explore one of the lesser known avenues relating to the Anglo-Saxons, and it pertains to their incredible military that bridged the gap between the ancient ‘barbarian’ Germans and the ordered medieval armies. So without further ado, let us take a gander at ten fascinating things you should know about the Anglo-Saxon warriors.

1) The Roman influence? 

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Illustration by Angus Mcbride
While the diminishing of Roman imperial rule set the tone for Anglo-Saxon arrivals at the shores of the British islands (circa 5th century AD), it should be noted that the late Roman Empire already followed an ‘inclusive’ military doctrine that allowed the employment of auxiliary units. By 4th century, in the northern frontier, these auxiliary units were often composed of entire Germanic sub-tribes, who were settled as foederati (allied troops) in marches, buffer zones and areas of conflict. During the same time-period, the Romans (or Romano-British) had already begun to set up coastal defenses to protect their shores from the forays of the independent Anglo-Saxon tribes.