Talk:Timeline of conflict in Anglo-Saxon Britain

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Takeover of what?[edit]

The idea is laudable but the title is incorrect. "The Anglo-Saxon invasion and takeover of Britain"? When exactly did the Anglo-Saxons "take over Britain"? The over-reliance on Bede and the ASC - naturally very biased, especially the former - also needs redressing. The final entry is at best a half-truth which implies that the Anglo-Saxons conquered Wales: not so! As for the title, I'd suggest that something like "Timeline of the Anglo-Saxon invasion and their establishment in Britain" would be more accurate. Enaidmawr (talk) 23:27, 8 April 2008 (UTC)

Nearly a month and no reply. This title is completely inaccurate. When exactly did the Anglo-Saxons take over Britain? I don't recall reading of their conquest of Wales and Scotland in any history book, rather unsurprisingly (the article itself makes no reference to a "takeover of Britain", for obvious reasons). Perhaps the simplest way to rename this is with "Timeline of the Anglo-Saxon invasion of Britain". If someone doesn't come up with a better suggestion in the next few days that's what I intend to do. Enaidmawr (talk) 23:04, 2 May 2008 (UTC)

I agree with your proposal above (to the redlink). Seems sensible. --Jza84 |  Talk  23:25, 2 May 2008 (UTC)
Thanks. I'll leave it for a few days to see if there is an alternative proposal - but all the others I could think of were impossibly long! Enaidmawr (talk) 23:28, 2 May 2008 (UTC)
Collecting together assorted primary sources to fabricate a timeline is rather pointless. This article could lead readers to suppose that entries in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle purporting to describe events in 433 and 1063 are of equal value. The only secondary source cited is Campbell's "Lost Centuries", and that's rather full of cautionary notes on the value of the ASC. Here we have "On or before 547 ...", whereas Campbell (p. 26) is much more cautious: "[The ASC] supplies a date, 547, for the succession of Ida to Bernicia, and another, 560, for that of Aelle to Deira: these may indicate the beginnings of the power in those kingdoms of the dynasties which were to rule them, and possibly of Anglian power there." And so on: may, possibly, perhaps. Angus McLellan (Talk) 23:38, 2 May 2008 (UTC)
I agree with Enaidmawr's proposal - and, following the above comment, there should be a clear warning sentence or two in the introduction about the uncertainty around some of the sources cited. Ghmyrtle (talk) 08:03, 3 May 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for the feedback. As there are no objections I'm moving it to the proposed name. I agree with the above comments on the content and the inherent problems of accuracy and veracity, etc., but that's something that can be worked on even if it means loading the article with "ifs" and "buts". Could do with alternative sources to balance it as well, e.g. Annales Cambriae, Brut y Tywysogion, Scottish chronicles. Enaidmawr (talk) 20:38, 5 May 2008 (UTC)


The article is littered with references to Celts, what were they doing in Britain, were they on their holidays? Stutley (talk) 10:44, 5 August 2008 (UTC)

You might find this list or British Iron Age helpful. Ben MacDui 17:05, 5 August 2008 (UTC)
Interesting list I'm sure, doesn't include any celt tribes though. Both of those articles look like they've been thrown together by people with an ethnic axe to grind and no knowledge of serious historical thinking. There never was a race of celts. There never was a celtic culture. There are no celt genes. Many make an assumption that there was a language, proto-celtic, that linked Gaelic and Welsh but there is no evidence for this.Stutley (talk) 10:49, 6 August 2008 (UTC)
I've never been able to understand why people dismiss the science of historical linguistics so readily, yet blindly accept the findings of other fields they know just as little about. The scientific rigour of the discipline is just as strong as that of genetics and archeology, and what it tells us about historical cultures is just as valid. It is good you have a healthy skepticism, that's one of the bases of scientific thought - but please, look at the evidence first!
You will find that the sound correspondences between Brythonic and Gaelic roots, as well as Gaulish, correspond exactly. They are clearly related. Their Genetic (linguistics) relationship is as clear and as rigourously demonstrated as the Genetic (biology) link between chimpanzees and humans. And this scientific method isn't just used in Celtic studies, by "people with an ethnic axe to grind", as you claim. It and similar methods have been applied to thousands of languages all over the world, and it has been just as successful in many, many, many cases in finding relationships between attested languages and in reconstructing ancestral proto-languages.
I realise this discussion occured months ago and the original poster seems to no longer be active, but I hope anyone else who has misconceptions about this issue will read this and take my advice to look into the science of historical linguistics further before they dismiss it as blindly. -- (talk) 07:28, 2 November 2008 (UTC)
I'm back. I'm not disputing any link between Brythonic, Gaelic and Gauls, I'm merely pointing out that using the word "celt" to describe any of those is wrong. Stutley (talk) 09:14, 6 November 2008 (UTC)
Why? We have to use some word if we're going to talk about them as a group. There is no clear contender from the Celtic languages themselves that describes the group as a whole (which makes sense, as they never thought of themselves as a unified group), so why not borrow a convenient word from Greek? There are lots of other similar examples, such as the word "Maya". The various groups of Maya had (and still have) a great many different names for themselves, the word "Maya" is simply taken from the name of one of the first group that Europeans encountered, the people of Mayapan. Sure, it's not historically accurate to use the word to refer to the whole group, but everyone involved in the field knows the origin of the word and would never make the mistake of thinking that all the Maya used the name to refer to themselves.
Another example a bit closer to home is the word "Germanic". Whatever people constituted the Proto-Germanic culture may have refered to themselves using some ancestor of the modern German world "Deutsche", although we can never be sure, but in linguistics we use a word derived from the Latin word "Germanus". This word was originally used by the Romans to refer to a tribe or group of tribes in North-East Gaul that may or may not have even spoken a Germanic language. So why use this term? There are a number of historical reasons, but ultimately it doesn't matter. That is the term that has stuck and is now universally agreed upon. Even in the German language itself the term "Germanisch", not "Deutsche", is used to refer to the Germanic language family. The fact is that label used in discourse does not reflect anything other than just that, a simple label for convenience. -- (talk) 01:31, 7 November 2008 (UTC)
Convenient, exactly. You are grouping tribes in the period 400-800AD with seperate languages and from seperate regions as one based on a common language root dating back up to 2000 years before that time. Why not call them "Indo-Europeans" and the article can be about the Indo-European invasion of the other Indo-Europeans? Stutley (talk) 09:29, 11 November 2008 (UTC)
Because that would, as you note, lead to confusion, as both groups are Indo-European speakers. -- (talk) 16:23, 11 November 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for that insightful contribution Stutley (talk) 14:32, 12 November 2008 (UTC)

An untrue title[edit]

The title implies a takeover of the present Wales and Scotland by the Anglo saxons. This did not happen. I think that 'Timeline of the Anglo-Saxon invasion of England' may be better, or even 'Timeline of the failed Anglo-Saxon invasion of Britain'.Llywelyn2000 (talk) 06:16, 10 August 2008 (UTC)

Invasion is also misleading. Timeline of the Anglo-Saxon settlements, or something like that, might be better. Or even Timeline of Sub-Roman Britain. That would mean a lot of changes to the content, but since it's very poor indeed that would be no bad thing. Angus McLellan (Talk) 10:45, 10 August 2008 (UTC)
I don't think the word "invasion" is neccesarily misleading as it could, in any historical context, be partial, complete (i.e. "conquest") or a total failure. I do take your point however and have no objection to another move. I changed it to this as anything seemed better than the original title "Timeline of the Anglo-Saxon invasion and takeover of Britain" (!). I also agree that title and contents don't match. If we opt for the second proposal "Timeline of Sub-Roman Britain" we will need to cut out all the medieval material, which would leave very little; however plenty about early Wales and Scotland (the Hen Ogledd, for instance) could be added to make up for that. "Timeline of the Anglo-Saxon settlements" might be better (terminus=date?). "Timeline of the Anglo-Saxon invasion of England" is a bit illogical perhaps, as England did not exist before the coming of the Anglo-Saxons. Anyway, no objections to a suitable move (and the less said about the non-existence of the Celts in the first section, above, the better!). (Or what was the first section - just made this a seperate one). Enaidmawr (talk) 18:29, 10 August 2008 (UTC)
Enaidmawr- What you say is totally locical. It wasn't the Anglo Saxons who invaded Britain but a myriad of different tribes. And it wasn't an invation (which today has other connotations to the word: such as the Normandy Invation of June 1944) but rather a slow, immigration of different and incoherent people such as the Frisians, Angles, Jutes over three or four hundred years. Maybe the word 'attempt' should be included in the title. The fact is that the collection of tribes (some would call Anglo Saxons) were NOT successfull in their attempt to take over the whole of Britain. Enaidmawr; the decision is yours, master! Llywelyn2000 (talk) 20:59, 10 August 2008 (UTC)
There was an invasion. The name "Anglo-Saxons" means the sum total of the Germanic peoples who invaded. And over most of what is now England the takeover was successful, which explains why I writing this in English and not in a Celtic language. (I live in England.) Anthony Appleyard (talk) 21:50, 10 August 2008 (UTC)
The celts lived somewhere around the Balkans and never set foot in Britain so the less said about them the better.Stutley (talk) 22:19, 11 August 2008 (UTC)
What reasoning! Llywelyn2000 (talk) 22:34, 10 August 2008 (UTC)
How about something from Gildas: 'De Excidio Britanniae' ('About the Fall of Britain' and the rise of Anglo Saxon Immigration into England)? Too long-winded I should think. Or simply: Timeline of Britain 400 - 800 A.D. Llywelyn2000 (talk) 07:51, 11 August 2008 (UTC)
Timeline of Sub-Roman Britain has the advantage of inclusiveness, although it completely changes the focus of the article away from the Anglo-Saxons and would need a big re-write. Possibly a new article? Likewise Timeline of Britain 400 - 800 A.D. Timeline of Anglo-Saxon settlement in Britain is a little wordy, but possibly the most accurate. In response to Anthony Appleyard, yes, I speak a variant of English too, but this did not become common in large areas of the north and west of Britain until centuries after this timeline ends. Using this measure the "invasion" is still not complete. The problem is of course that it was an invasion, but only of part of Great Britain. Another difficulty is that the article fails to provide any kind of overview e.g. "The invasion/settlement lasted from x date to y date and resulted in an area from A to B falling under the control of the Anglo-Saxons and their allies. The implication of the current version is that the invasion was succesfully concluded by the 11th century. Ben MacDui 08:14, 13 August 2008 (UTC)
It seems to me that there are several issues to be addressed in deciding the title. Firstly, what area are we talking about? I think we agree (do we?) that we are talking about Britain, including the areas now known as England, Scotland and Wales. The second and fundamental question is whether we are simply covering a time period, or whether we are covering a process. In some ways a time period would be simpler as we can cover everything that happened in the area during the period - but how helpful would it be? It would inevitably attract a confusing mass of unrelated information. I can see that a timeline for a particular region might be useful, but in my opinion a timeline for "Britain" would acquire too much information to be of much value to many readers. As to the time period, I suppose 400-800 would be as useful as any other, but would there then need to be one for, say, 800-1200 as well? Or should it be 410-1066? On balance I think the article would be better to cover a process and, as that is where we are starting from, in my opinion the coverage should be of the changes in the population of Britain between the end of the Roman period and the start of the Norman period. Now, that's not much of a title. It might also be too broad - for example, should it cover Vikings as well as Angles, Saxons and Jutes? Or too narrow - should it cover Welsh and Cornish migration to Brittany, for example? I think there is a consensus that the term "Anglo-Saxon" includes smaller groups from the same general area, so I don't have a problem with that term, and I also think "settlement" is more useful and NPOV than "invasion" (although the term "invasion" in itself doesn't imply that it was successful, or a "takeover"). So, I think I support Ben MacDui and favour Timeline of Anglo-Saxon settlement in Britain. Ghmyrtle (talk) 16:47, 17 August 2008 (UTC)
I agree: on the understanding that the first paragraph makes it clear that only parts of Britain became home to these new settlers. Llywelyn2000 (talk) 07:34, 25 August 2008 (UTC)
I agree with Ben MacDui and Ghmyrtle as it seems the simplest solution without changing the article's focus, but with the clear distinction in the first paragraph, as Llywelyn2000 notes, that the settlement was partial - enough people think that Britain and England (Anglo-Saxon or otherwise) are synomynous already! The period of c. 400-800 seems the sensible one to go for: although A-S England is normally regarded as continuing up to the Norman Conquest we are talking of "settlement" here and that roughly covers the main period for the establishment of the A-S kingdoms (things are rarely that tidy in history so we could allow a brief postcript, I suppose). I'd also like to see a more balanced use of sources and the caveat that sources such as Bede and the A-S Chronicle are inherently biased (as are similar sources, of course...). Enaidmawr (talk) 21:04, 25 August 2008 (UTC)
I agree with the last two posts. So far as the first para goes, would it suffice to say: "Anglo-Saxon settlement in Britain began around the time of the end of the Roman occupation, and eventually extended over most of England but not Scotland or Wales" - or is that too simplistic? Ghmyrtle (talk) 21:28, 25 August 2008 (UTC)
Time up please gentlemen! The consensus dictates a much needed change, a less offensive title as suggested by Ben MacDui and Ghmyrtle: Timeline of Anglo-Saxon settlement in Britain. I shall therefor carry out this change in 10 days time, unless there is good reasoning not to do so - of which, so far, there has been very little. Llywelyn2000 (talk) 21:46, 4 November 2008 (UTC)
Agreed, the consensus seems established and the move long overdue. It's either Timeline of Anglo-Saxon settlement in Britain or change the whole article. Enaidmawr (talk) 00:26, 5 November 2008 (UTC)
A time for change, I think... Go for it! Ghmyrtle (talk) 07:26, 5 November 2008 (UTC)
What fantastic Wiki debate! lol. Strictly speaking although the Anglo-Saxons didn't occupy all of Scotland - a large part of the Scottish lowlands were part of the English Kingdom of Northumbria and remaind a part of England until the Norman conquest. Jalipa —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:31, 26 May 2009 (UTC)

Moving the Goal-posts[edit]

The last cut-and-paste by user Stutley is against the rules of Wicki. Moving his comments means that the comments which follow (by myself) refer to other comments by another user. His newly moved comments are also missplaced, anachronistic! What's the protocol regarding such misuse? Llywelyn2000 (talk) 07:54, 12 August 2008 (UTC)

WP:VANDAL states "Blanking the posts of other users from talk pages other than your own, Wikipedia space, and other discussions, aside from removing internal spam, vandalism, etc., is generally considered vandalism." I see this was inappropriate re-positioning of an edit rather than blanking, which is arguably disruptive rather than outright vandalism per se. I have reverted the post. Ben MacDui 07:59, 13 August 2008 (UTC)
Diolch. Thanks. Llywelyn2000 (talk) 00:00, 14 August 2008 (UTC)
The reason I moved the post is because I put it in the wrong place by mistake in the first place. It is now in the wrong place in that the post it appears to be a reply to is not the post that it was a reply to. I shall leave it where it is as I don't want to traumatise anyone... Stutley (talk) 09:58, 16 August 2008 (UTC)


About this entry:

The text in italics may be ancient racism, but it is still racism. Is it needed? Anthony Appleyard (talk) 14:10, 1 November 2009 (UTC)

Yes, it is racist. But I can't think how the expulsion of a racial group from a city could be considered as anything but racist. It really needs to stay. Daicaregos (talk) 15:02, 1 November 2009 (UTC)
This comment by Malmesbury would be more appropriate in the Norman Conquest section rather than part of AS settlement, then it would be understood in context. By the end of William of Normandys reign in 1087 most of the Anglo Saxons had been ejected from their lands or enslaved, he had caused the deaths of nearly 150 thousand AS in the Harrying of the North, any important AS buildings were being pulled down and replaced with Norman architecture. The language of court was Norman-French rather than AS. The British and AS were seen as something of a sub-species by their Norman conquerors, Henry of Huntingdon said that it was an insult to be called English. About the only thing English of importance that the Normans wanted to use was the tax system, and they used that to destruction in building castles everywhere partly to defend what they had taken but also to impress how important they were. Anglo-Norman Malmesbury was putting some spin on his chronicles to support the Norman view.[see for example "Harold, the last Anglo-Saxon king".By Ian W. Walker p.xxvii and p.38] By contrast Athelstan who was responsible for ejecting the Cornish to the other side of the border is remembered in Cornwall as a benefactor of their churches. He created the bishopric of Cornwall and visited Exeter several times during his reign building a minster there and endowing it with lands and holy relics. Wilfridselsey (talk) 08:11, 19 March 2010 (UTC)
In my opinion, the entry could be expressed simply along the lines of: "According to William of Malmesbury, writing around 1120, Athelstan evicted the Cornish from Exeter." I agree that the quote should either be placed in context, or (preferably) removed from this article - which isn't really the place for raising or discussing racist attitudes in 12th century England. Are there any other good sources (independent of William) which explain what Athelstan did in 927? Ghmyrtle (talk) 09:24, 19 March 2010 (UTC)

I agree Williams comment is not really appropriate in this article. I am not sure that we have to include William anyway, as he is Norman and not contemporary with the events. This is supposed to be about the Timeline of AS settlement, not really supposed to be about major discussions other than reliability of dates maybe? If people want to discuss Norman spindoctors then should discuss it in one of the Norman articles (or perhaps Cornish?). Anyway, as you probably have seen I have altered the entry slightly and provided a suitable citation, I hope that everyone will be happy with that? Wilfridselsey (talk) 10:50, 19 March 2010 (UTC)

I didn't really say why Athelstan evicted the Cornish from Exeter. He had persuaded 5 Welsh rulers to swear an oath of allegiance to him and pay a yearly tribute. The Cornish king refused to go along with this, so Athelstan kidnapped him and held him hostage and then evicted the Cornish to the other side of the Tamar in retaliation. Cornwall lost it's full independance being administered by English reeves. However it was the Normans who made it an English earldom in 1069. The main difference between the the English/ British way of doing things is they would go for oaths of allegiance and tributes where possible, the Normans conquered lands and divided it up and gave it to their own people. Wilfridselsey (talk) 11:53, 19 March 2010 (UTC)

'Settlement' or 'invasions'?[edit]

'Settlement' suggests that the AS settled peacefully and were welcomed by the locals, who were perfectly happy to either move away or accept the conquerors' rule and their language. 'Invasions' suggests that the AS captured the land and displaced or subjugated the locals by force. I don't think any RS has denied that the latter is true. But I suppose it is embarrassing to patriotic Englishmen, because it suggests that the birth of their nation was the result of a series of violent acts, basically hordes of quasi-Germans cleansing or enslaving the quasi-Welsh/Bretons who were the original British inhabitants. This almost implies that if there were any justice, there would only be Welsh/Breton people on the island of Great Britain. So to avoid offending the Englishmen's feelings, one should use 'settlement' as a title. Shouldn't one? -- (talk) 00:43, 25 December 2009 (UTC)

You are trying to impose modern sensibilities into an era that we don't know very much about. The latest DNA studies have somewhat put a different picture on things, there are a lot more of todays English who are of Celtic origins than supposed before. Also tribes such as the Belgae who were part of ancient Britain are now suspected as having German rather than so called Celtic origin.
Neither the Britons or the AS were one people they were a series of tribes who were apt to fight or form alliance with each other, as Gildas will tell you. The AS had a tendency to squabble amongst themselves, the north never liked being ruled by the south even in those days, check out Anglo-Saxon settlement of Britain and look at some of the online papers it has there. As far as the title is concerned perhaps a 'Timeline of AS Britain during the Migration Period' would have been more appropriate as that covers all bases. Wilfridselsey (talk) 12:11, 19 February 2010 (UTC)
Most of the details you are heaping up don't change the fact that an invasion is an invasion. You say that "Neither the Britons or the AS were one people they were a series of tribes who were apt to fight or form alliance with each other, as Gildas will tell you." I'm sorry, but this is very far from what Gildas will tell me, or you, or anyone else. Gildas does relate that the Britons called the Saxons to help them against the Scots and the Picts, but he deplores this act as foolish and outrageous, not as something normal. He is very much aware of the distinction between the Brits as a whole, whom he calls "our countrymen", "our nation", "our country", and the AS as a whole, whom he calls "the fierce and impious Saxons, a race hateful both to God and men", "the enemy", "our cruel foe", "cruel conquerors" etc.. He does regard the AS as conquerors, so it is certainly not a modern sensibility to call their actions "conquests" and "invasions". These are just the facts. It may be a modern sensibility to condemn invasions as such, but we aren't talking about condemnation. We are just talking about calling invasions with their proper name. The "modern sensibilities" of condemning invasions are precisely what motivates the effort to muddle the issue, whitewash history and deny that these were invasions, an effort that I see you support.-- (talk) 22:00, 19 March 2010 (UTC)
You are expousing the traditional view that everyone accepted quite happily, warts and all, it was that the British were driven off their lands to the west of the country, the new scientific and archaelogical research throw doubt on that model, in fact Oppenheimers research says that only 5% of the English genepool is derived from the AS, most of the British Isles genes come from the neolithic people who arrived several thousand years ago, so in fact the Celts, Normans and AS are in a very small minority. I don't have a POV on this I am just interested in the new research and it is far more explosive than your very obvious POV. What Oppenheimer is saying is if I understand correctly that the English are not Anglo-Saxon and the Welsh are not Celtic, but they all derive from the same stock via the Northern Iberian peninsular. One of the reasons suggested is that it was only a small amount of AS who invaded, and that the landowners and peasants remained in place, the changes only happening at the top. The Normans did pretty much the same although they also replaced the landowners. To quote Bell. The role of migration in the history of the Eurasian steppe. p.303. As for migrants, three kinds of hypotheses have been advanced. Either they were a warrior elite, few in numbers but dominant by force of arms; or they were farmers mostly interested in finding good agricultural land; or they were refugees fleeing unsettled conditions in their homelands. Or they might have been any combination of these.
The new research as I understand it is still emerging and is not conclusive (ie scientists are still arguing), check it out for yourself! Wilfridselsey (talk) 12:09, 20 March 2010 (UTC)
It seems to me that the questions are whether the Gildas view is "true", whether the genetic evidence (if convincing - and Oppenheimer has many critics, as discussed here, here and elsewhere) is "true", and whether the two positions can be reconciled (such as, whether Gildas was talking primarily about their effects on the social elite rather than on entire communities, or whether there were variations in different areas). I'm not an expert so have no firm view about the "truth" - but it seems to me that there is no consensus, yet, and therefore Wikipedia needs to report what sources on all sides say, in a neutral and/or balanced way. Ghmyrtle (talk) 10:15, 21 March 2010 (UTC)
I think that this discussion is more about a 'conspiracy theory', that settlement or migration is used now rather than invasion to save English sensibilties! We now talk about the migration period or Völkerwanderung(the people wandering) rather than Barbarian Invasion, so I guess if there is a conspiracy it's Europe wide. It's an interesting POV, I am not sure it's relevant on an historical article. More appropriate to a discussion on Political Correctness perhaps?
There has been some discussion in talk:Anglo-Saxon settlement of Britain about what term is appropriate migration or invasion. I don't know for sure why historians have de-emphasised invasions, but I assume because movement of peoples round Europe in the early medieval period was somewhat more complex than just invasion.
As far as Gildas description of the AS being a brutal bunch, I am sure it is true, particulary if they were mainly a warrior elite. That was business as usual for those times. Gildas was ranting against the British leaders of the time who were infighting and who he thought stupidly had invited the Saxons in. Higham suggests that the document was partly written in order to find a way to reverse the conquest, using metaphor and imagery as a literary weapon.
Anyway, I think that for a thousand years or so, historians have been arguing about the literary texts. What has happend now is that improvements in science have now allowed the original models to be questioned. But has the new science answered the all important historical questions? No it just seems to ask more questions, so whether there will ever be a consensus is probably unlikely. But as you say it's our job is to try and make sense of all the different arguments and come up with a NPOV. I think that historians seem to be in agreement in calling it migration, so we have to go along with that. We are here to reflect current thinking, not set it. Wilfridselsey (talk) 13:42, 21 March 2010 (UTC)
Again, most of what you are saying is not relevant. The argument whether the AS were just a small warrior elite who subdued the local population like the Normans (except that they just somehow managed to impose their language on everybody and borrow almost no native words), or whether they were a huge mass of people who slaughtered and drove off the native population, has no bearing on the issue whether it was an invasion or not. In fact, if you are right and your preferred "new science" position is the correct one, that would make it even more appropriate to call it an invasion/conquest and not a migration. Ever heard of the Norman settlement of England and William the Migrator?
You claim that "historians seem to be in agreement in calling it migration" - "migration" does not preclude "invasion/conquest", both can and do co-occur, so you can use both terms, depending on which aspect of the events you are focusing on. Yet, even if we look at the issue from a technical point of view, here are my Google Scholar results: "anglo saxon settlement in britain": 10 hits, "anglo saxon settlement of britain": 19 hits "anglo saxon conquest of britain": 82 hits, "anglo saxon migration into britain": 0 hits, ": "anglo saxon invasion of Britain": 48 hits, "anglo saxon invasions of Britain": 27 hits.
As for the discussion in Anglo-Saxon settlement of Britain, the renaming of that article was based on the precedent in this article, and even in that discussion it was acknowledged and demonstrated that "invasion" was the most common term, yet the guideline was ignored. I think dab had a point when he responded to the original poster advocating "settlement": "What is this, a British version of the "Indigenous Aryans" hilarity in India?" That's exactly what I think it is, albeit in a milder form.-- (talk) 03:32, 22 March 2010 (UTC)
I have never said that there weren't invasions, on the whole I have not disagreed with your historical points. We reflect what current opinion is in the academic community and if the words used are migration or settlement rather than invasion that's what we go along with, it doesn't change the historical facts. As I said before fundamentally you are arguing about Political Correctness. Click on the link to see the definition! You are saying that we are using political correct terms rather than popular terms?
The new science is producing a lot of new information on the period that is questioning the traditional model. The experts can not agree. Genetics, DNA, pollen records etc. is not my area, so I can not comment on it with any authority, I will keep an open mind on that and watch it with interest. Wilfridselsey (talk) 08:27, 22 March 2010 (UTC)
OK. As I said, all of the words are apparently used, but "invasion" is more common; and yes, I suspect that the reason the articles were renamed to the less common term is political, in a broad sense; but I would avoid calling it "politically correct", because that term suggests that one is consciously afraid of offending someone else, and I think the avoidance of the term "invasion" in this case is more like a semi-conscious effort not to offend oneself and the group one belongs to. Someone above called this choice NPOV; as if the POV of the Britons were that it was an invasion, but the equally legitimate POV of the Saxons is that it was a tourist trip. I also claim that when an event comprises both invasion and settlement, it is usually called "invasion" or "conquest"; and when an event as a whole is called just "settlement" as in this case, this suggests that it was peaceful. But whatever, I'm tired of being confrontational and caustic; and I know that no matter how much I rant / argue, the articles won't be renamed, so I'm dropping the issue. Best wishes, -- (talk) 20:43, 22 March 2010 (UTC)
OK - I have enjoyed our exchange of views, I thought you argued your case with passion so don't feel too bad. My feeling, as I said, was to call it 'Timeline of AS Britain during the Migration Period' as that is an all inclusive term that takes in Invasion, Conquest etc and also ties in to the general term for the migration of the various German tribes around Europe at then time, so I guess that we should call it a draw as that ain't going to happen either!! Best wishes to you too. Regards Wilfridselsey (talk) 16:15, 24 March 2010 (UTC)

Contentious Dates and Events[edit]

I have introduced (?) to flag a date and event that is contentious. Just to clarify, virtually all the dates on the Timeline are best guesses, but (?) is to be used when both the date and the event are problematic. I have used it for the Rescript of Honorius and the Aella landing, as they are both subject to much discussion, I have included a citation to explain the issue as well.Wilfridselsey (talk) 14:54, 13 March 2010 (UTC)

A very good idea, thanks. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Dougweller (talkcontribs) 14:58, 13 March 2010 (UTC)

ASC Notes[edit]

I have separated out the OE version of the ASC and put them in their own ASC Notes section, this declutters the timeline entries, and I think, makes them easier to read. Also I don't suppose that too many people can understand Old English. Wilfridselsey (talk) 16:29, 17 March 2010 (UTC)

waelisc translation[edit]

Does the translation Welsh really aid understanding? An average English Dictionary will not give "Celt Indigenous to England" under Welsh - wikidictionary doesnt give this definition. The translation English is more understandable but is also misleading. As the obscure use of Welsh has to be explained couldn't the original Old English be used instead? Some authors dont tranlate, for instance, Frederic Seebohm(Tribal Customs in AngloSaxon Law). The use of national labels is liable to create national bias and distort science.Fodbynnag (talk) 04:05, 27 April 2010 (UTC)

Most of the early annals were written in Latin, therefore the Welsh annals would have been translated from the oral Welsh into Latin. I don't belive that the Welsh annals were ever in Old English. Later translations to English would have been taken from the Latin texts. The 9th C. Anglo Saxon Chronicle was probably the only early annal written in a native language, in this case Old English, as King Alfred was literate and enthusiastic about his language, he seems to have made that happen. Wilfridselsey (talk) 14:50, 3 May 2010 (UTC)

Requested move[edit]

The following is a closed discussion of the proposal. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the proposal was moved to Timeline of Anglo-Saxon Britain. --regentspark (comment) 18:56, 11 November 2011 (UTC)

Per discussion above and at Anglo-Saxon invasion of Britain, the current name is infelicitous per WP:NAME and WP:REL.

The consensus did not establish that no Anglo-Saxon invasion occurred, as is being argued by Ghmyrtle at A-SioI. Enaidmawr, Jza84, Llywelyn2000, Anthony Appleyard, Ben all argue or support the precise opposite point: there was an invasion. The only dispute of that came from Angus. The current article title achieved consensus because it was felt to be the best name to describe the Anglo-Saxons for the entire AD 400 – 800 period, long after the initial invasions.

However, the page now includes dates well past AD 800 and is a history of all Anglo-Saxon affected cities, even the established ones. A move to "Timeline of Anglo-Saxon Britain" or "England" would be best, but the page obviously omits most details apart from cities and settlements. "Settlements" makes it clear that we're talking about the physical cities, not a process. Keeping the current name means a clean-up and removal of most late entries. — LlywelynII 01:54, 3 November 2011 (UTC)

I don't understand - looking at the article as it stands, it seems to be mostly about military conflicts, certainly not about either "settlement" or about "settlements". Seems rather a strange article, largely based on primary sources - not sure what purpose it is really supposed to serve, but I think a name like you suggest (Timeline of Anglo-Saxon Britain) would be least misleading.--Kotniski (talk) 11:32, 11 November 2011 (UTC)
Only just seen this. I've never argued anywhere "that no Anglo-Saxon invasion occurred" - don't know where that idea came from. However, the proposal to rename this article to Timeline of Anglo-Saxon settlements in Britain is bizarre and misleading. Timeline of Anglo-Saxon Britain seems a much better suggestion. Ghmyrtle (talk) 12:06, 11 November 2011 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of the proposal. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.


The following discussion is an archived discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was: page moved. Vegaswikian (talk) 20:14, 13 December 2011 (UTC)

Timeline of Anglo-Saxon BritainAnglo-Saxon invasion of Britain -Relisted.--Aervanath (talk) 19:35, 6 December 2011 (UTC)relisted - Mike Cline (talk) 14:38, 20 November 2011 (UTC) Relisted. Cloudz679 19:07, 27 November 2011 (UTC) * I intended this article as a timeline of conflict between Anglo-Saxons and Celts, not among Anglo-Saxons or between Anglo-Saxons and Vikings. By "settlement" I meant "the process of settling", not towns and villages. Anthony Appleyard (talk) 22:23, 11 November 2011 (UTC)

In that case, why not say so explicitly - Timeline of Anglo-Saxon–Celtic conflict or something like that. That does seem to correspond to what the article contains.--Kotniski (talk) 09:23, 12 November 2011 (UTC)
How about Timeline of Anglo-Saxon occupation of Britain? It is a timeline rather than a prose article, and I think that should be made clear in the title. "Occupation" implies a process of taking over land, but over a longer period than that implied by the word "invasion", and less peacefully than implied by "settlement". Ghmyrtle (talk) 14:46, 20 November 2011 (UTC)
I see that one of the the redirects to this article is Timeline of the Anglo-Saxon invasion and takeover of Britain, how about a shortened version of that Timeline of the Anglo-Saxon takeover of Ancient Britain? Covers most bases. Wilfridselsey (talk) 09:45, 21 November 2011 (UTC)
I prefer my suggestion. "The... takeover" sounds less encyclopedic to me than "occupation", and I don't think the word "Ancient" (whether capitalised or not) is necessary. Ghmyrtle (talk) 08:54, 23 November 2011 (UTC)
Not sure "occupation" is the right word though - makes it sound like a military occupation, rather than the long process of settlement and conquest and displacement that I think it was.--Kotniski (talk) 10:37, 23 November 2011 (UTC)
Well, the article says it covers "how they took the land over from Celtic-speaking or Latin-speaking Romano-Britons" - rather than the "long process of settlement" thereafter - and its initial creator says that it was intended to cover, specifically, "conflict between Anglo-Saxons and Celts". What is the best way of summarising those concepts in a single (or two) word(s)? "Invasion" implies a one-off process, and "migration" implies a wider overview with less focus on key events. I would not be opposed to Timeline of Anglo-Saxon invasion and settlement of Britain, except that it's a rather long title. Ghmyrtle (talk) 11:01, 23 November 2011 (UTC)
The problem is that it is difficult to provide a title that will truly reflect the complexity of the coming of the Anglo Saxons. Perhaps, less is more and we should stick with Timeline of Anglo-Saxon Britain but do some work on the introduction so that it defines more closely what the article is about, namely the conflict between the Anglo Saxons and the Celts? However this could also be seen as somewhat problematic as it was not really so simple as one side against another, rather various groupings and alliances were formed at different times. Wilfridselsey (talk) 21:38, 27 November 2011 (UTC)
Essentially this article is not really "about" a specific, or general, subject - it is a summation of the sources that refer to the conflicts that arose during the processes of invasion and settlement, and presents dates for them. If anything, it is a Timeline of events in the Anglo-Saxon ......... of Britain. Ghmyrtle (talk) 23:40, 27 November 2011 (UTC)
I think that my previous comment still applies, it is a summation of the sources that refer to the conflicts that arose during the processes of invasion and settlement, and presents dates for them could be put in the intro? Wilfridselsey (talk) 12:53, 28 November 2011 (UTC)
But if it is called Timeline of Anglo-Saxon Britain, is anyone going to expand the article to add all the other dates in the period - such as rulers' dates of accession and death, etc., unrelated to the processes of invasion and settlement themselves - that would come under that title? Ghmyrtle (talk) 13:03, 28 November 2011 (UTC)
Probably not! But I would say that your point applies equally to all the other titles as well. We can either try and qualify what the article is about in the title, which seems a little impractical based on this discussion, or whatever the title is we tell 'em what we are going to tell 'em in the introduction. Currently the intro just discusses the problems of constructing a chronology, plus a key, we do not explicitly say what the objective of the article is. Wilfridselsey (talk) 18:40, 28 November 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose -- The present name satsifactoily covers its scope. It is not just about the Migration Period ("invasion") in the 5th century. It is not just about Anglo-Celtic conflict: many of the conflicts were between SAxon and Saxon. Anyway, the latest research tends not to emphasise invasion and settlement, but a form of continuity with new rulers taking over. It wisely does not conclude regnal dates. However most of the other events recorded in ASC are things like battles. Leave it as it is, or suggest a better name. Possibly Timeline of conflict in Anglo-Saxon Britain. Peterkingiron (talk) 16:26, 1 December 2011 (UTC)
I think that is an excellent suggested title - it is specific, and covers the subject matter of the article. Ghmyrtle (talk) 16:39, 1 December 2011 (UTC)

 Relisted for more discussion of User:Peterkingiron's suggestion.--Aervanath (talk) 19:35, 6 December 2011 (UTC)

  • I oppose the original proposal. Peterkingiron's suggestion is acceptable to me. Srnec (talk) 01:01, 7 December 2011 (UTC)
  • Support move from Timeline of Anglo-Saxon Britain to Timeline of conflict in Anglo-Saxon Britain. (And Oppose original proposal to move article to Anglo-Saxon invasion of Britain.) Ghmyrtle (talk) 07:05, 7 December 2011 (UTC)
  • As I wrote above, there was an invasion, as old sources make clear. The name "Anglo-Saxons" means the sum total of the Germanic peoples who invaded. And over most of what is now England the takeover was successful, which explains why we are discussing this in a Germanic language (English) and not in a Celtic or Romance language. (I live in England.) If the coming of the Anglo-Saxons was not an invasion, then what was it? Anthony Appleyard (talk) 07:14, 7 December 2011 (UTC)
Of course there was a process of invasion and settlement, as discussed at the separate article on Anglo-Saxon settlement of Britain (which, among other things, deals with the interpretation of "old sources", which may not necessarily be reliable sources). The content of this article overlaps that article, but has a different focus. Firstly, it is a timeline and not a prose article. Secondly, as its original creator has stated, it deals with specific events marked by conflict, within the overall process of invasion and settlement, not the whole process itself. Ghmyrtle (talk) 07:28, 7 December 2011 (UTC)
Yes, there was undoubtedly an invasion (or several) at some point (or points), but this article is about much more than that. If we could be clear exactly what the scope of this article is intended to be, we could decide (a) whether it's needed, and (b) what to call it.--Kotniski (talk) 11:06, 7 December 2011 (UTC)
"Older sources" do not represent the conclusions of modern scholarship. Some of the Saxons were almost certainly brought in as Roman foederati - barbarian troops in Roman (or subRoman) pay. Some of the alleged invaders in fact have Celtic names. Modern scholarship rejects the idea that there was a large-scale invasion that drove back Celts into the west. The compilers of Anglo-Saxon chronicle certainly wrote their chronicle on the basis that there was an invasion. However, my more serious concern is that it is not about an invasion (or even mainly about the Saxon migration), but about conflicts between the kingdoms of the heptarchy, though I am far from sure that we even beleive in a hepatarchy today. This is a valid article, but it needs a name that much better reflects its content. Peterkingiron (talk) 18:40, 8 December 2011 (UTC)
?? What does that (rhetorical?) question have to do with the title of this article?--Kotniski (talk) 12:09, 9 December 2011 (UTC)
  • To change the language of much of Britain from Celtic to Germanic, many Germanic-speakers would have had to come and become the ruling class, and that needs a large invasion. not merely "cultural influence". Anthony Appleyard (talk) 06:59, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
I think it needs much more than an invasion. The question is not whether an invasion took place, but whether said invasion is the subject of this article. At the moment it appears not to be.--Kotniski (talk) 17:36, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
@AA: Why do you (apparently) oppose the article being called a Timeline? Ghmyrtle (talk) 07:27, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

Move? (2)[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was: not moved. (non-admin closure) Jenks24 (talk) 09:47, 21 December 2011 (UTC)

Timeline of conflict in Anglo-Saxon BritainTimeline of Anglo-Saxon invasion of Britain

  • The previous discussion ended as "move", but move to what? among a welter of suggestions. I started this article as about the Anglo-Saxons' invasion / takeover / whatever of Celtic / Post-Roman Britain, not about other conflicts in Britain, e.g. internecine or with Vikings. Anthony Appleyard (talk) 22:14, 13 December 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose. The article, as first presented and as presently constituted, covers a period of some 700 years. By no stretch of the imagination can the whole of that period be described as an "invasion" (or several invasions). It covers a long process of invasion, conquest, and occupation, marked by conflict with the pre-existing population, essentially as the conquest frontier moved within the island. Although I favoured a title such as "Timeline of Anglo-Saxon occupation of Britain", to cover those processes, others disagreed. It would in my view be quite possible, if the present title is maintained, to expand its content to include other conflicts, such as conflicts with Vikings. Whatever title is finally agreed, it needs to be one that allows editors with reliable sources and neutral positions to come to the article to develop it, rather than one that presupposes a particular viewpoint on the events of the period. Ghmyrtle (talk) 07:57, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose. However the article was conceived, it de facto is now about conflicts over the 700 years or so, predominantly in what is now England and Wales, and to a lesser extent Scotland based on the various annals and Bede. It includes details on internicine feuds Celt Vs Celt, Anglo-Saxon vs Anglo-Saxon etc; as well as Viking and Norman invasions, The stated objective was to be conflict between Anglo Saxon and Celt. To only meet that one narrow objective would mean severe pruning of the article, and would thus make it a lot less worthy. Currently it gives a wider background to the period which I think makes it more interesting. As I have said above, I think that the introduction could do with some work to actually state more closely what the article is supposed to be about, perhaps we should concentrate on that rather than move the article? Wilfridselsey (talk) 09:07, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose -- Whatever the original intent, the article is about far more than invasion. We have already diuscussed this at length and have come up with a solution that reflects the content. In any event, the whole concept of invasion is no longer accepted by historians. I was a much more gradual process involving assimilation of the indigenouse population, as I have explained under proevious RM noms (above). The change of view took place some 40-50 years ago, but it always takes school text books at least a generation to catch up, and we all tend to believe what we were taught at school. Peterkingiron (talk) 16:13, 14 December 2011 (UTC)
  • Oppose per last two. Johnbod (talk) 14:50, 20 December 2011 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.


Is there any reason why the exploits of Alfred and his grandson Athelstan aren't listed? The victories of these two kings were some of the best recorded battles of the period, at least in poetry. The ninth and tenth century sections are very empty. Willknowsalmosteverything (talk) 13:57, 6 June 2012 (UTC)

I'm not very fond of timelines, they almost always seem original research and can be used to put forward a pov. I agree they should be in the article. Dougweller (talk) 14:43, 6 June 2012 (UTC)
The article needs to be expanded generally, as per the comments made in the discussions above regarding the article content and title. But, it needs editors with knowledge of, and access to, reliable sources, to do that. Ghmyrtle (talk) 15:45, 6 June 2012 (UTC)
Surely the Anglo-Saxon chronicle and the abundance of sources on the individual articles of the battles in question are enough? Willknowsalmosteverything (talk) 08:54, 9 June 2012 (UTC)
The point is that this article was started by an editor with one perspective, and it's been agreed in previous discussions that it ought to be broadened out, with more use of reliable academic sources (not just the ASC) setting the ASC in context. If you are able to do that, excellent. Ghmyrtle (talk) 09:04, 9 June 2012 (UTC)