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Special issue - Anglo-Saxon England: A Decade of Research

Slavery After Rome, 500-1100 / Alice Rio

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Review Date: 03 August 2017

In this masterful monograph, Alice Rio revisits one of the central questions in the historiography of early medieval Western Europe: how did the transition from slavery to serfdom take place? While many earlier answers to this question have proposed a more or less linear trajectory from late Roman slavery to the serfdom of the central Middle Ages, Rio sets out a compelling and elegant argument for…


Law and Order in Anglo-Saxon England / Tom Lambert

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Review Date: 29 June 2017

It is the title which gives away a great deal about this very fine book, and should alert us to Tom Lambert’s ambition for this project, which has grown out of a University of Durham PhD thesis. ‘Law’ positions it as a work of legal history, but it is the component of ‘order’ which offers the second and bolder half of Lambert’s argument.


Danes in Wessex : the Scandinavian impact on southern England, c.800-c.1100 / eds. Ryan Lavelle, Simon Roffey

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Review Date: 01 December 2016

The 13 essays in this book are the outcome of a conference (with the addition of a few other papers) held at Winchester University in September 2011.


Formation of the English kingdom in the 10th century / George Molyneaux

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Review Date: 11 February 2016

In The Formation of the English Kingdom in the Tenth Century, George Molyneaux investigates how territories under the dominion of the Cerdicing kings of Wessex developed into a clearly defined and conquerable kingdom. The book’s fundamental argument is that the period 871 through 1066 cannot be treated as a cohesive block of history.


Religious Women in Early Carolingian Francia: A Study of Manuscript Transmission and Monastic Culture / Felice Lifshitz

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Review Date: 22 October 2015

This book offers an investigation into the Anglo-Saxon cultural province of Francia during the eighth century (more specifically the area between the Middle Main and Tauber valleys), which, to borrow the author’s own words, ‘argues that the Christian culture of that region was thoroughly gender-egalitarian and in many ways feminist’ (p. 3).


Heaven and Earth in Anglo-Saxon England: Theology and Society in an Age of Faith / Helen Foxhall Forbes

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Review Date: 27 November 2014

The volume’s stated aim is to investigate the influence of Christian theology and religious beliefs on Anglo-Saxon society. In doing so Foxhall Forbes endeavours to show the wider population’s engagement with Christian theology, which has usually been regarded as the preserve of the educated elite.


The Wealth of Anglo-Saxon England / Peter Sawyer

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Review Date: 12 September 2013

Peter Sawyer is one of our most distinguished Anglo-Saxon or, perhaps better, Anglo-Scandinavian historians.


Prosopography of Anglo-Saxon England / ed. Stephen Baxter

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Review Date: 03 May 2012

Anglo-Saxon historians are in an enviable position when it comes to electronic resources. We already have a host of helpful websites at our fingertips: the Electronic Sawyer (http://www.esawyer.org.uk/), Kemble (http://www.kemble.asnc.cam.ac.uk/), ASChart (http://www.aschart.kcl.ac.uk/) and Langscape (http://www.langscape.org.uk/) for charters; the Fontes Anglo-Saxonici Database (http://fontes.english.ox.ac.uk/) for the Latin sources of Anglo-Saxon literature (both Latin and vernacular); the Corpus of Early Medieval Coins for numismatics (http://www.fitzmuseum.cam.ac.


Peaceful Kings. Peace, Power, and the Early Medieval Political Imagination / Paul Kershaw

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Review Date: 01 October 2011

‘When medieval men and women thought and wrote about power in the early Middle Ages – what it was, what it should be, what it had been – peace was never far from their thoughts’ (p. 271). Thus writes Paul Kershaw in the last paragraph of this important work on the ideas behind rulership but it explains perfectly the previous 270-odd pages.


Æthelstan: The First King of England / Sarah Foot

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Review Date: 01 October 2011

Æthelstan might not, to the uninitiated, seem a very likely candidate for a volume in the prestigious Yale English Monarchs series. He lacks the name-recognition associated with a Conquerer or a Confessor, and is not the subject of any compelling anecdotes about beaches or cakes which have wormed their way into the popular consciousness.


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This special issue has been curated by Dr Irene Bavuso, Economic History Society Postan Fellow at the Institute of Historical Research. The selection provides an overview of research on Anglo-Saxon England published over the last decade (2008-2018). Many of the selected works propose new approaches for the study of this period, providing a wide-ranging picture on Anglo-Saxon England. The included works cover a broad range of themes, often offering challenging perspectives on debated topics. The books and the electronic resource span from Christianisation and the influence of Christian theology and religion on Anglo-Saxon society, the Viking ages in England, law and social order, prosopography, and political and socio-economic developments during the Late Anglo-Saxon period. Other contributions, although not specifically on England, offer thought-provoking perspectives on fundamental topics, such as slavery, kingship, and the Anglo-Saxon cultural influence on the Continent, helping us to situate England in its broader European context.

Special issues

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