SUTTON HOO HELMET: This helmet was found in the ship-grave at Sutton Hoo. Can you see the two dragon's heads nose-to-nose at the front? From the little pieces it is possible to see what the whole helmet might have looked like: Reconstructed helmet. Here is what a shield probably looked like: Only the 'boss' (the middle part) and some of the metal deocorations have survived. This is the dragon from the left-hand side of the shield: This is a bird of prey. The wooden part of the shield has rotted away. This sword was found in Germany: The blade is covered by a sheath decorated with with gold. Anglo-Saxon swords were often decorated with complicated patterns like these: A mailcoat or mail-shirt: A mailcoat or mail-shirt was to protect the warrior's body. A mailcoat was not stiff and heavy like the suits of armour knights wore later in history. back to main story
Related: Anglo-Saxons Year 5
Anglo-Saxon Clothes and JewelleryAn Anglo-Saxon lady wore: a loose gown fastened round her waist with a girdle;a full-length, sleeved tunic; a mantle or cloak around her shoulders;a hood over her head. Anglo-Saxon men wore: a knee-length tunic with tight sleeves;a short cloak which was fastened on the shoulder;breeches (knee-length trousers);shoes with leather thongs which criss-crossed up their legs. Poor people wore less clothes made of rougher cloth. The wealthy had clothes dyed with bright colours and fastened with expensive brooches. The women also wore long strings of beads made of: glass, amber or amethysts.
A workshop on the Anglo-Saxons for year 5 and 6This workshop is designed to cover the Anglo-Saxons unit of the KS2 National Curriculum for History. It is suitable for year 5 or 6. Main Activities: 1. 2. 3. 4. Note: the art activities are challenging and may not be suitable for classes of lower art and crafts abilities. Fee: £209 per class per day, maximum 34 children. The first part of this workshop on weapons and warfare is now ready as a half day. To book: contact Tony North firstname.lastname@example.org 0161 224 6445 Introduction After the collapse of the Roman Empire in the 5th century the peoples of northern Europe - Angles, Saxons and Jutes - quickly moved to fill the power void left in Britain, settling, taking control, and introducing their culture to the Britons. 1500 years later we still owe a great deal to these peoples, in our language, culture, and genetic inheritance. Children will learn about the legacy of the Anglo-Saxons and create two works of art - a helmet, shield or sword, and a piece of gold or silver jewellery.
Anglo Saxon life - Food and DrinkThe Anglo-Saxons loved eating and drinking and would often have feasts in the Hall. The food was cooked over the fire in the middle of the house; meat was roasted and eaten with bread. They drank ale and mead - a kind of beer made sweet with honey - from great goblets and drinking horns. After the feast a minstrel would play a harp and sing songs of battles and heroes. Anglo-Saxons ate what they grew. They grew cereals - Wheat and rye for bread, barley for brewing and oats for animal food and porridge. Exotic foods such as potatoes, tomatoes, bananas, pineapples - fruits and vegetables of the New World, were unknown to the Anglo-Saxons. Drink Barley was used to make weak beer, which was drunk instead of water. Most Anglo-Saxons were vegetarians because they could not get meat very often. Animals Pigs were important for food because they produce large litters, which would quickly mature and be ready for slaughter. Fish The Anglo-Saxons ate fish which they caught in the rivers and the seas.
Anglo-Saxon clothes - women | Tha Engliscan Gesithas5th to 7th centuries Women wore an under-dress of linen or wool with long sleeves and a draw-string neck. Sleeves were fastened with clasps for wealthier women, or drawn together with braid or string for poorer women. The outer dress was a tube of material, rather like a pinafore, and often called a ‘peplos’. A pair of shoulder-brooches or clasps held this onto the under-dress. A belt was worn, from which various accessories were hung. There is some linguistic evidence that shawls were worn, as well as cloaks, which were fastened either centrally or to the right shoulder with a brooch. 7th to 9th centuries Shoulder-brooches and wrist-clasps went out of fashion, and the sleeves of the over-dress now came to just below elbow-length on the arms and calf-length around the legs. 10th to 11th centuries The under-dress was now often pleated or folded, while the sleeves of the over-dress tended to flare towards the wrist.
Anglo-Saxon clothes - men | Tha Engliscan Gesithas5th and 6th centuries Men wore wool or linen hip-length undershirts with long sleeves, and probably loin-cloths. Woollen trousers were held up with a belt threaded through loops. 7th to 11th centuries Tunics tended to have extra pleats inserted at the front, and sleeves became fairly tight-fitting between elbow and wrist. There was undoubtedly much variation according to region, period and status. Most clothes were made at home, and would almost certainly have undergone many repairs, or have been handed down, before being eventually cut up for rags or thrown away. Underclothes were not usually dyed, but left in their natural colour, or perhaps sun-bleached.Anglo-Saxon warfareThe period of Anglo-Saxon warfare spans the 5th Century AD to the 11th in England. Its technology and tactics resemble those of other European cultural areas of the Early Middle Ages, although the Anglo-Saxons, unlike the Continental Germanic tribes such as the Franks and the Goths, do not appear to have regularly fought on horseback. Evidence Although much archaeological evidence for Anglo-Saxon weaponry exists from the Early Anglo-Saxon period due to the widespread inclusion of weapons as grave goods in inhumation burials, scholarly knowledge of warfare itself relies far more on the literary evidence, which was only being produced in the Christian context of the Late Anglo-Saxon period. These literary sources are almost all authored by Christian clergy, and thus do not deal specifically with warfare; for instance, Bede's Ecclesiastical History of the English People mentions various battles that had taken place but does not dwell on them. Battlefield tactics See also
Primary History - Anglo-Saxons - Anglo-Saxons at warAnglo Saxon Weapons & Armour - Angelcynn Re-Enactment SocietyThe principle weapon of the Anglo-Saxons was the spear. Spearheads came in many styles (Swanton classified 21 different forms), but were usually leaf- or 'kite-' shaped and had a socket for attachment to the shaft. It was usually diamond-shaped or lentoid in cross section, while the socket which continued from the narrow neck of the spearhead was split on one side and usually had an iron rivet to attach it to the shaft, which was usually of ash. Spearheads vary considerably in length from a few inches to two feet or more, and the basic forms change very little throughout the whole Anglo-Saxon period. Spears are found in around 86% of the Anglo-Saxon burials that contain weapons. Swanton's Classification for Early Anglo-Saxon Spearheads Type A This type of spearhead has a barbed head with a long metal shank connected to a socket. 'Angons are spears that are neither very short nor very long, but suitable for throwing, should it be necessary, as well as for engagement at close quarters.