Richly illustrated, this title describes Anglo-Saxon monarchs, warlords and their warriors and households in Anglo-Saxon Britain, from the first post-Roman mercenaries to the Norman Conquest.
In a country fragmented by Roman withdrawal during the 5th century AD, the employment of Germanic mercenaries by local rulers in Anglo-Saxon Britain was commonplace. These mercenaries became settlers, forcing Romano-British communities into Wales and the West Country. Against a background of spreading Christianity, the struggles of rival British and Anglo-Saxon kingdoms were exploited by the Vikings, but eventually contained by the Anglo-Saxon king, Alfred of Wessex. His descendants unified the country during the 10th century, however, subsequent weak rule saw its 25-year incorporation into a Danish empire before it finally fell to the Norman invasion of 1066.
Scholars of the early Church have long known that the term 'Dark Ages' for the 5th to 11th centuries in Britain refers only to a lack of written sources, and gives a false impression of material culture. The Anglo-Saxon warrior elite were equipped with magnificent armour, influenced by the cultures of the late Romans, the Scandinavian Vendel people, the Frankish Merovingians, Carolingians and Ottonians, and also the Vikings.
In this volume, co-authors Raffaele D'Amato and Stephen Pollington access their extended knowledge to paint a vivid picture of the kings and warlords of the time with the aid of colour illustrations, rare photos and the latest archaeological research.
About the Author
Raffaele D'Amato, PhD, is the author of some 40 books and has written numerous articles on the Roman Empire, Byzantium, medieval Europe and the military of Ancient Greece. He has taught at the University of Ferrara, and was a visiting professor at Fatih University, Istanbul. He currently lives in England, working as an archaeological consultant and lawyer for Timeline Auctions Ltd of Harwich, and also as an external researcher for the Laboratory of the Danubian Provinces at the University of Ferrara.
Stephen Pollington is an author and broadcaster specializing in the Anglo-Saxon period, its culture and language. He has written more than a dozen books on such aspects as warfare and the military, the medical traditions, pre-Christian religion, the development of art styles, the 'meadhall' culture, language and literature. He is a part-time lecturer, has provided visual and spoken content for television and radio, and is a tutor of the Old English language.