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Anglo-Scandinavian is an academic term referring to the hybridisation between Norse and Anglo-Saxon cultures in Britain during the early medieval period. It remains a term and concept often used by historians and archaeologists,[1] and in linguistic spheres.[2]

Although evidence for interconnection between Scandinavia and England is present throughout the entire early medieval period, two major concentrations of Scandinavian settlement are evident: the creation of the Danelaw during the mid-ninth century, and the conquest of Sweyn Forkbeard and Cnut in the 1010s.


There are a number of artefact types that appear only within Scandinavian-occupied England, and thus appear to be exclusively 'Anglo-Scandinavian'. Norse bells, like the examples found at Cottam B, are found nowhere in Scandinavia and only within Norse colonies.[3]: 305  The hogback form of stone grave markers is unattested in the rest of the Scandinavian world.[3]: 306  An argument for hybridity has also been constructed from the varying range of burial practices evident within the Danelaw, rather than the more standardised diagnostic patterns of burial we see in Scandinavia: Richards has suggested that 'rather than searching for burial-types that can be matched in Scandinavia we should therefore be looking for the creation of new cultural identities' [4]


Lewis-Simpson has advanced the argument that Danelaw personal names are a direct reflection of this process of hybridity.[5]


  1. ^ Haldenby, D. and Richards, J.D. (2016). The Viking Great Army and its Legacy: plotting settlement shift using metal-detected finds, Internet Archaeology 42. Retrieved 13 Dec 2016
  2. ^ Sandred, KI (2005). "Language Contacts Outside Scandinavia III: With England and Scotland". In Bandle, O; Braunmüller, K; Jahr, EH; Karker, A; Naumann, HP; Elmevik, L; Widmark, G (eds.). The Nordic Languages: An International Handbook of the History of the North Germanic Languages. Vol. 2. Berlin: Walter de Gruyter. pp. 2062–2073. ISBN 3-11-017149-X.
  3. ^ a b Richards, Julian D. (2000). "Identifying Anglo-Scandinavian Settlements". In Hadley, Dawn M.; Richards, Julian D. (eds.). Cultures in Contact: Scandinavian Settlement in England in the Ninth and Tenth Centuries. ISBN 978-2-503-50978-5.
  4. ^ Richards, Julian D. (2002). "The Case of the Missing Vikings: Scandinavian Burials in the Danelaw". In Lucy, Sam; Reynolds, Andrew (eds.). Burial in Early Medieval England and Wales. p. 157. ISBN 9781902653655.
  5. ^ Lewis-Simpson, Shannon (2011). "Assimilation or Hybridization? A Study of Personal Names from the Danelaw". In Hoofnagle, Wendy Marie; Keller, Wolfram R. (eds.). Other Nations: The Hybridization of Medieval Insular Mythology and Identity. Universitätsverlag Winter. pp. 13–43. ISBN 9783825358945.

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