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Category Archives: Anglo-Saxons

St. Cuthbert and Me

On a trip to Northumbria in 2019 I visited a number of sites with ties to Cuthbert, the saint whose feast day is March 20 and who was greatly loved by the Anglo-Saxons. Cuthbert was born in Northumbria in 635, … Read More

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Winterfell: The Story Behind the Name

In George R.R. Martin’s fantasy series A Song of Ice and Fire, the Stark family—descended from the ancient Kings of Winter—rules from its northern fastness of Winterfell. That name, WINTERFELL, conjures up images of both WINTER and SNOWFALL, appropriate for … Read More

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Anglo-Saxon Kingdoms Exhibit Catalogue

  I could not make it to London to see the highly acclaimed exhibit at the British Library, ANGLO-SAXON KINGDOMS, so I purchased the catalogue, which arrived yesterday. I have a lot of reading ahead of me over the next … Read More

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Tolkien and the Anglo-Saxons

Where has the horse gone? Where is the rider? Where is the giver of gold? Where are the seats of the feast? Where are the joys of the hall? O the bright cup! O the brave warrior! from The Wanderer, … Read More

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England’s First City, circa A.D. 1000

For centuries the city of London has been the cultural, political and financial center of the United Kingdom. Turn back the clock some 1200 years though, and you will find that the royal and religious center of England was farther … Read More

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Those Brutal Middle Ages

I read a scholarly article recently which suggested that medieval warriors suffered from post traumatic stress syndrome, just as modern soldiers do. It also proposed that the fighting men of the middle ages were not the brutal savages that we … Read More

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Falling Stars, Bloody Moons and Dragons

Tonight we will be able to witness a total lunar eclipse – the last in this year’s rare series of four such eclipses, which astronomers call a tetrad. This time round we have a harvest moon and a supermoon in … Read More

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What Happened at Corfe in 978?

Today, the chalk hill of Corfe on the Isle of Purbeck in Dorset is crowned by the ruins of, for the most part, a 12th century Norman castle. But in Anglo-Saxon times a hunting lodge stood on the hill, and … Read More

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Review: The Ceremony of Innocence, a play written in 1968 by Ronald Ribman

It is Christmas Eve in the year 1013. The king of England, Ethelred, has retired to a cell in a monastery on the Isle of Wight. He is mournful, despairing, and self-exiled from his court and kingdom due to remorse … Read More

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The Riddle of the Stones

They had arrived at last at a long, low ridge where the standing stone, its edges scored in primitive runes, pointed skyward. Athelstan checked his horse beside the ancient, lichen-covered stone. Gazing into the shallow vale beyond, he caught his … Read More

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