Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Hostname: page-component-8448b6f56d-mp689 Total loading time: 0 Render date: 2024-04-24T04:07:12.036Z Has data issue: false hasContentIssue false

CHAPTER 5 - ‘Paganism in Early-Anglo-Saxon East Anglia’

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 April 2013

T. A. Heslop
Affiliation:
University of East Anglia
Elizabeth Mellings
Affiliation:
University of East Anglia
Margit Thøfner
Affiliation:
University of East Anglia
Get access

Summary

INTRODUCTION

East Anglia has long been recognised as pivotal to our understanding of the Early Anglo-Saxon period. Situated on the frontier of migrationary movements around the North Sea, it witnessed a complex mixing of peoples, cultural traditions and religious beliefs between the late fourth and sixth centuries. Understanding the nature of what constituted faith to those early people we conveniently term the East Angles is therefore challenging and draws upon a variety of evidence. In particular, it relies on us appreciating that a native Romano-British population need not have been passive, mute bystanders to the new ways brought by immigrant Germanic peoples, but may have made their own particular contributions to create new traditions. Certainly, the inhabitants of what was to become East Anglia were geographically well-placed to absorb or react to the beliefs and material culture of those passing through or choosing to settle within the local landscape. This chapter will therefore attempt to summarise how current scholarly thought interprets pre- Christian Anglo-Saxon belief, or ‘paganism’, and how East Anglia in particular can contribute to such a debate.

Anglo-Saxon paganism has fascinated scholars for decades, yet remains poorly understood. Despite a voluminous literature, the limited primary evidence available is stubbornly problematic for interpreting what the pre-Christian Anglo-Saxon settlers to these shores believed, and the extent to which such popular convictions may have articulated themselves in faith systems.

Type
Chapter
Information
Art, Faith and Place in East Anglia
From Prehistory to the Present
, pp. 66 - 87
Publisher: Boydell & Brewer
Print publication year: 2012

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

Save book to Kindle

To save this book to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Available formats
×

Save book to Dropbox

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

Available formats
×

Save book to Google Drive

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

Available formats
×