Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-6c8bd87754-trcsx Total loading time: 0.361 Render date: 2022-01-21T03:19:34.494Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "metricsAbstractViews": false, "figures": true, "newCiteModal": false, "newCitedByModal": true, "newEcommerce": true, "newUsageEvents": true }

1 - Church Councils, Royal Assemblies, and Anglo-Saxon Royal Diplomas

from PART I

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 December 2013

Simon Keynes
Affiliation:
University of Cambridge
Gale R. Owen-Crocker
Affiliation:
Professor of Anglo-Saxon Culture at the University of Manchester
Get access

Summary

From the earliest days of kingship and royal government in Anglo-Saxon England, the context in which kings were most likely to have been observed by their people displaying their status, dispensing their treasure and exercising their power, was at an assembly. The spectacle must have been as much a part of any such occasion as whatever business might have been conducted, or ceremonies performed. No less important, one imagines, was the impression made as the king and his entourage moved from one place to another, and from another place to the next assembly. Nor should one underestimate the opportunities which such occasions provided for plotting, as well as gossiping, for making enemies as well as friends, and of course for feasting and entertainment. Royal assemblies of one kind or another are visible in the historical record from c. 600 onwards, though it is only in the tenth and eleventh centuries that the material is plentiful and diverse enough (by the standards of historians of the pre-Conquest period) to provide a good foundation for the study of a form of royal government which could claim to represent a distinctive product of its age.

It is possible to form an impression of the range of places where such assemblies were held, and of their timing, frequency, and duration. It is also possible to get a fair idea of attendance at the assemblies, and of the range of business conducted at them. By analogy with practices often better recorded elsewhere than in Anglo-Saxon England, we have to bear in mind at the same time the significance of ceremonial of many kinds (processions, celebrations, declarations, commemorations, acclamations and inductions, as well as displays of contrition, reward and generosity, to name but a few), all inseparable from the forms of divine service and other religious ritual appropriate to the season, the ceremonial, and the occasion. Central, none the less, to our perception of royal assemblies is the extent to which the written word, in Latin and in the vernacular, played a part in the proceedings.

Type
Chapter
Information
Publisher: Boydell & Brewer
Print publication year: 2013

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.)

Send book to Kindle

To send this book to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@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 sending to your Kindle.

Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent 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
×

Send book to Dropbox

To send 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 sending content to Dropbox.

Available formats
×

Send book to Google Drive

To send 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 sending content to Google Drive.

Available formats
×