TOPIC - Anglo Saxons
Today you will understand how people’s lives have shaped the nation, and how Britain has been influenced by the wider world.
In our last Zoom session we learnt about the fall of the Roman empire and looked at the reasons why people invaded and settled in Britain. We learnt that, during the first 4 centuries CE Britain was ruled by the Romans. The province of Britannia had grown rich through trade, farming, industry & the building of large towns. The Romans had become Christians. However, tribes started to attack the western Roman Empire & in CE 410 the Visigoth tribe had captured & sacked Rome & many troops were sent to Italy to fight the invaders. Britannia was under attack from the Caledonian Picts in the north, the Scots in the west (Ireland), the Jutes (Belgium), Frisians (Netherlands), Angles (Denmark) & Saxons (Germany) in the south & east. Some Anglo-Saxons (possibly twins Hengist & Horsa) were invited by the Romans to bring their men as mercenaries to help fight off the Picts from Caledonia (now Scotland), who were attacking North Britannia. They are often described as the first Anglo-Saxon invaders. The Roman soldiers who were left were spread too thinly to be able to defend Britannia from the various tribes & gradually abandoned their settlements & withdrew from Britannia. Other men from the European mainland had been recruited over the 400 years of Roman occupation, to fight alongside the Romans & some of them stayed. Some Romans stayed too - living with the Britons. The Anglo-Saxons (generalised term for all the tribes) knew that the Romans were retreating & felt that Britannia would provide land to grow crops, raise animals & settle down in new villages. Their own lands were over-crowded & the low-lying areas were often flooded which made farming difficult. They came by small rowing boats.