Beyond the Burghal Hidage: Anglo-Saxon Civil Defence in the by John Baker, Stuart Brookes

By John Baker, Stuart Brookes

Because the identify indicates, past the Burghal Hidage takes the research of Anglo-Saxon civil defence clear of conventional old and archaeological fields, and makes use of a groundbreaking interdisciplinary method of study conflict and public responses to organised violence via their impression at the panorama. by way of bringing jointly the proof from quite a lot of archaeological, onomastic and historic assets, the authors may be able to reconstruct advanced strategic and armed forces landscapes, and to teach how very important targeted wisdom of early medieval infrastructure and communications is to our knowing of Anglo-Saxon preparedness for battle, and to the situating of significant protective works inside their wider strategic context. the result's an important and far-reaching re-examination of the evolution of past due Anglo-Saxon protective arrangements.

Winner of the 2013 Verbruggen prize, given every year by way of De Re Militari society for for the easiest ebook on medieval army heritage.

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Extra resources for Beyond the Burghal Hidage: Anglo-Saxon Civil Defence in the Viking Age

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The extent to which unification was a result of Alfred’s innovations might also be questioned. While warfare, as discussed above, can be a significant factor in state formation, the underlying institutions that allow the prosecution of war, and the ability to resolve disputes are also important 24 chapter one (Cohen 1984, 337). g. Campbell 1995a, 39–47; John 1996, 71–4; Brooks 2003; Reynolds and Langlands 2007, 39–41), and not just in Wessex (Brooks 1971, 76; Wormald 1991a, 119–22). At the same time, the effective unification of Mercia and Wessex may have been the culmination of a long-term process of mutually-beneficial rapprochement.

921, translation from Garmonsway 1972, 103). The implication of the passage seems to be that ethnically English people living in East Anglia and Essex took the opportunity to switch their allegiance to Edward and away from their former Danish lords; but this does not mean they had not, previously, fought with the Danes, only that it was now expedient to cease so doing. In the aftermath of victory at Edington, Alfred was able to reinforce his position in Wessex and, by the middle of the 880s, achieve some kind of dominion over the western half of Mercia, with which he perhaps already had strong ties (Keynes 1998; 2001b).

These works exist within a larger debate on the scale and nature of the later Anglo-Saxon state (Campbell 1995a; Foot 1996; Wormald 1999). A third strand in the literature deals with the theoretical aspects of civil defence and state formation. Given that early medieval warfare has not been a central concern, the extant literature on this topic is meagre. Some authors have sought to identify the underlying social uses of violence in Anglo-Saxon society (Halsall 1989; 1998; 2003; Fletcher 2003; Hyams 2001), whilst others have explicitly linked warfare with kingdom formation (p.

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