Alfred's Wars: Sources and Interpretations of Anglo-Saxon Warfare in the Viking Age

Alfred's Wars: Sources and Interpretations of Anglo-Saxon Warfare in the Viking Age

Ryan Lavelle

Personal eBook

Boydell Press



Collection of source material and crucial interpretations, offering a comprehensive guide to Anglo-Saxon warfare.
Selected by Choice for the 2011 list of Outstanding Academic Titles.

The warfare of the late Anglo-Saxon period had momentous consequences for the development of the English state following Alfred the Great's reign. This book provides a comprehensive guide, with extracts in translation from the principal sources for our knowledge, accompanied by the most important interpretations by scholars through the ages, and new introductions by the present author. It looks at every aspect of the topic, from land and sea forces to logistics and campaigning, from fortifications and the battlefield to the final peacemaking. In so doing, it highlights the significance of warfare and its organisation for the late Anglo-Saxon state, and the multitude of ways in which it was recorded and remembered.

Dr Ryan Lavelle is Senior Lecturer in Medieval History at the University of Winchester.


13 black and white, 27 line illustrations
400 pages
24.4x17.2 cm
Warfare in History
Hardback, 9781843835691, October 2010
Paperback, 9781843837398, July 2012
Personal eBook, 9781782044956, October 2010
Boydell Press
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Table of Contents

Introduction: A Society at War: Mentalities of Warfare in Later Anglo-Saxon England
Friends and Foes
Organisation and Equipment: Land
Organisation and Equipment: Maritime
Campaigns and Strategies
Fields of Slaughter: Battles and Battlefields
After the Battle: Peacemaking and Peace Agreements
Appendix: Timeline


Will surely become a go-to guide for those seeking to represent "authentic" medieval warfare of the period in all its facets, as well as those who want to authoritatively critique such descriptions. MEDIEVALLY SPEAKING

The most complete, authoritative insight into the military affairs of Alfred's rule and perfect for a thorough analysis of the warfare that he waged. EUROPEAN REVIEW OF HISTORY

As far as medieval warfare is concerned, this book hits all the nails on the head; another excellent (...) title in Boydell's 'Warfare in History' series. HOBILAR

An important book. SOUTHERN HISTORY

Students of Anglo-Saxon culture and warfare will find cause to grab Alfred's Wars off the shelf time and again. It is the most comprehensive treatment of its subject yet published. JOURNAL OF MILITARY HISTORY

A remarkably inclusive, detailed and wide-ranging account of the state of current scholarship on the subject of later Anglo-Saxon warfare (and) an indispensable overview of historical approaches. MEDIEVAL ARCHAEOLOGY

As thorough as one could possibly hope, and should become a standard point of reference for future research and teaching on Anglo-Saxon warfare. Essential. CHOICE

In respect of the areas covered, the depth of discussion and the review of previous scholarship, this book has few equals. For the study of early medieval warfare, this book provides an exceptionally useful starting point and deserves a place on the bookshelf of every student of the period. Highly recommended! MEDIEVAL WARFARE

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