Anglo-Saxon Chronicle


Anglo-Saxon Chronicle
   The most important source for the history of Anglo-Saxon England, especially for the period from the mid-ninth century until the fall of the Anglo-Saxons to William the Conqueror in 1066, the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle also provides useful information on the development of the English language. It survives in seven manuscripts, some of which include both Old English and Latin entries, and its accounts are arranged as annals, or year-by-year summaries of events.
   The Chronicle, including both its earliest versions and most complete later versions, covers the history of England and the Anglo-Saxons from the first century b.c. until 1154. Events covered by the Chronicle include Julius Caesar's invasion of England, the Anglo-Saxon invasions, and the deeds of the Anglo-Saxon kings. Although called the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, the focus of the annals is the West Saxon kings, with occasional mention of events in Mercia and on the European continent. The first version, which appeared during the reign of Alfred the Great in the late ninth century and was known to Asser, the biographer of Alfred, focuses on the history of the West Saxon kings, beginning with the fifth-century King Cerdic and ending with King Aethelwulf and his sons. Although the work covers a broad span of time, the period that receives the best and fullest treatment is that after 850.
   After the first version, the manuscript tradition divided into several versions, which do not always treat events in the same fashion, some versions of the Chronicle treating events more fully than others. Major events, like Alfred's campaigns against invading Vikings, however, often receive similar coverage in all the versions. The continuations of the Chronicle lasted until 1154, covering the events of the tenth and early eleventh century with little detail but offering more depth for the later eleventh and twelfth century. It provides useful discussion of William's conquest in 1066, and one version offers a brief and bitter summary of events of the year.
   The sources used by the compilers of the Chronicle vary. Works by Jerome and Isidore of Seville were used in the preparation of the early material covered by the annals; also useful for the early period was a Latin translation of the Ecclesiastical History of Eusebius. Other sources used for the preparation of the Chronicle were the Liber Pontificalis (Book of the Popes), genealogies, northern and West Saxon annals, Frankish annals, lists of kings and bishops, and, most probably, oral material. The most important source, and one that helped shape the organizational structure of the annals, was Bede's History of the English Church and People.
   See also
   Bibliography
 ♦ Whitelock, Dorothy, ed. The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle. Westport, CT: Greenwood, 1986.

Encyclopedia of Barbarian Europe. 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Anglo-Saxon Chronicle — The Anglo Saxon Chronicle is a collection of annals in Old English chronicling the history of the Anglo Saxons. The annals were created late in the 9th century, probably in Wessex, during the reign of Alfred the Great. Multiple manuscript copies… …   Wikipedia

  • Anglo-Saxon Chronicle — Chronique anglo saxonne La première page de la Chronique de Peterborough. La Chronique anglo saxonne (Anglo Saxon Chronicle) est un ensemble d annales en vieil anglais relatant l histoire des Anglo Saxons. Elles datent de la fin du …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Anglo-Saxon Chronicle —    The term Anglo Saxon Chronicle refers not to a single text but to a group of anonymous texts written in OLD ENGLISH prose compiled at various places around England and all deriving ultimately from an original core text. The Chronicle is the… …   Encyclopedia of medieval literature

  • Anglo-Saxon Chronicle — Die Anglo Saxon Chronicle oder Angelsächsische Chronik ist eine Sammlung von Annalen aus dem angelsächsischen England. Die Einträge wurden ab dem Ende des 9. Jahrhunderts regelmäßig aufgezeichnet und an einigen Stellen sogar über die normannische …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Anglo-Saxon Chronicle — an early history of England, written in Old English. It ends in the 12th century, but mostly covers the period from the time when the Romans came to Britain until the Norman Conquest in 1066. * * *       chronological account of events in Anglo… …   Universalium

  • (the) Anglo-Saxon Chronicle — The Anglo Saxon Chronicle [The Anglo Saxon Chronicle] an early history of England, written in ↑Old English. It ends in the 12th century, but mostly covers the period from the time when the Romans came to Britain until the ↑Norman Conquest in 1066 …   Useful english dictionary

  • Anglo-Saxon literature — (or Old English literature) encompasses literature written in Anglo Saxon (Old English) during the 600 year Anglo Saxon period of England, from the mid 5th century to the Norman Conquest of 1066. These works include genres such as epic poetry,… …   Wikipedia

  • Anglo-Saxon Charters — are documents from the early medieval period in Britain which typically make a grant of land or record a privilege. They are usually written on parchment, in Latin but often with sections in the vernacular, describing the bounds of estates, which …   Wikipedia

  • Anglo-Saxon architecture — was a period in the history of architecture in England, and parts of Wales, from the mid 5th century until the Norman Conquest of 1066.Anglo Saxon buildings in Britain were generally simple, constructed mainly using timber with thatch for roofing …   Wikipedia

  • Anglo-Saxon paganism — refers to the Migration Period religion practiced by the English in 5th to 7th century England. As such it is a form of Germanic paganism. Anglo Saxon paganism was a polytheistic religion, revolving around a pantheon centred on the god Woden. Due …   Wikipedia


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.