The Landscape Archaeology of Anglo-Saxon England

October 2010
18 black and white, 32 line illustrations
244 pages
23.4x15.6 cm
Pubns Manchester Centre for Anglo-Saxon Studies
ISBN: 9781843835820
Format: Hardback
Library eBook
Boydell Press

The Landscape Archaeology of Anglo-Saxon England

Edited by Nicholas J. Higham, Martin J. Ryan

The Anglo-Saxon period was crucial to the development of the English landscape, but is rarely studied. The essays here provide radical new interpretations of its development.
Traditional opinion has perceived the Anglo-Saxons as creating an entirely new landscape from scratch in the fifth and sixth centuries AD, cutting down woodland, and bringing with them the practice of open field agriculture, and establishing villages. Whilst recent scholarship has proved this simplistic picture wanting, it has also raised many questions about the nature of landscape development at the time, the changing nature of systems of land management, and strategies for settlement. The papers here seek to shed new light on these complex issues. Taking a variety of different approaches, and with topics ranging from the impact of coppicing to medieval field systems, from the representation of the landscape in manuscripts to cereal production and the type of bread the population preferred, they offer striking new approaches to the central issues of landscape change across the seven centuries of Anglo-Saxon England, a period surely foundational to the rural landscape of today.

NICHOLAS J. HIGHAM is Professor of Early Medieval and Landscape History at the University of Manchester; MARTIN J. RYAN lectures in Medieval History at the University of Manchester.

Contributors: Nicholas J. Higham, Christopher Grocock, Stephen Rippon, Stuart Brookes, Carenza Lewis, Susan Oosthuizen, Tom Williamson, Catherine Karkov, David Hill, Debby Banham, Richard Hoggett, Peter Murphy.

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Table of Contents

The Landscape Archaeology of Anglo-Saxon England: An Introduction - Nicholas J. Higham
Barriers to Knowledge: Coppicing and Landscape Usage in the Anglo-Saxon Economy - Cristopher Grocock
Landscape Change during the 'Long Eighth Century' in Southern England - Stephen Rippon
Population Ecology and Multiple Estate Formation: The Evidence from Eastern Kent - Stuart Brookes
Exploring black holes: Recent investigations in currently occupied rural settlements in Eastern England - Carenza Lewis
Medieval Field Systems and Settlement Nucleation: Common or Separate Origins - Susan Oosthuizen
The Environmental Contexts of Anglo-Saxon Settlement - Tom Williamson
Calendar Illustration in Anglo-Saxon England: Realities and Fictions of the Anglo-Saxon Landscape - Catherine E. Karkov
The Anglo-Saxon Plough: A Detail of the Wheels - David Hill
'In the Sweat of thy Brow Shalt thou eat Bread': Cereals and Cereal Production in the Anglo-Saxon Landscape - Debby Banham
The Early Christian Landscape of East Anglia - Richard Hoggett
The Landscape and Economy of the Anglo-Saxon Coast: New Archaeological Evidence - Peter Murphy


A significant landmark in its period. ANTIQUARIES JOURNAL

There is much to stimulate and interest in the pages of these proceedings, for which the editors are to be warmly congratulated. MEDIEVAL ARCHAEOLOGY

Many of these chapters are truly ambitious in their explanatory sweep. TLS

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