An Insight to the Anglo Saxon Runes

Anglo Saxon Runes
Symbols and Alphabets of Anglo Saxon Runes

The runes which were put into use by the early Anglo Saxons for the purpose of alphabets in their writings are called Anglo Saxon runes. These runes or characters were collectively given a name, which was futhorc. The sound values of the first six runes from the old English marked the origin of futhorc and were developed from the elder futhorc, which consisted of 24 characters.

The futhorc was widely known as the Anglo Frisian runes because they were also put to use in Frisia, which was before the Anglo Saxon settlement of Britain.


There were two main theories which were followed by the people of the British era. Some believed that the futhorc was originally developed in Frisia and then was later adopted by England. On the other hand, the rest believed that the Vikings originally bought the futhorc to England, modified the futhorc and then it landed in Frisia.

However, it was from the 7th century that the Latin alphabets slowly started taking over and started replacing the futhorc alphabets. Some remained unchanged denoting an entire word but others were changed.

During this time, the demand for an Anglo Saxon runes translator grew higher because of the dire need of people for understanding the change in the alphabets. There were also people who used English as their mode of any communication as English was one of the main languages used by the people during the British Era. Thus, for the ease of communication and better understanding people usually made the use of English to Anglo Saxon runes translations and vice-versa.

The Runic Tattoos

There are a large number of Anglo Saxon runes tattoos which were then used by the people of the British era and is still used people. The tattoos not only consisted of a name and a symbol but a specific meaning behind every name and symbol. Based on the ancient Anglo Saxon runes, these tattoos were developed with a specific name, symbol and meaning.

The “Aegishjalmur Charm” is a runic tattoo which has the symbol of the ‘helm of awe’. The purpose of the Aegishjalmur was to provide irresistibility and protection during the battle and hence the tattoo.

There are many other runic tattoos, namely, “The Fylfot”, “The Valnott”, “Sun Disk”, “Thor’s Hammer Pendant” or “Thorshamar”, etc. Each of these tattoos are denoted by a specific symbol and thus carry a specific meaning to the same.

Meaning of the Anglo Saxon Runes

We can say, the representation or the calligraphy of the Anglo Saxon runes were based on the futhorc. Thus, it can also be broadly called as the Anglo Saxon futhorc runes. Each of the symbols which we see under the Anglo Saxon futhorc runes holds a specific meaning to it. Therefore, one can easily find the meanings to the Anglo Saxon runes by following the different Anglo Saxon futhorc runes characters and symbols.

The majority of the people of the British era understood the meanings of these runes thereby not causing any problem in any mode of communication. However, there were few people who were uncomfortable with the use of Anglo Saxon alphabet runes due to using another language for the same purpose, namely English. These people generally translated the futhorc runes back and forth using translators.

The British Era: Anglo Saxon Runes

Even during the British era, the Anglo Saxon runes and meanings of the same were widely used not only for communication but also for several other activities.

Stone Cravings

Runes from Anglo Saxon Era

Stone carvings are one of such activities. We have come across many stone carvings during the different eras where people used to write scriptures on the stones by carvings on them. Same has been found with the Anglo Saxon runes. These stones, which had the carvings of the Anglo Saxon futhorc runes on them have been collectively called as the Anglo Saxon runes stones. These stone carvings during the British era, which had the Anglo Saxon futhorc runes also represents the Anglo Saxon runes ks2.

Anglo Saxon runes Literature

The literature during the specified time period also had a lot of it based on the Anglo Saxon runes. Even teachings in different level were largely based on the same. This is largely because of the language followed as the mode of communication.

Anglo Saxon runes Numbers, Symbols and Poems

The Anglo Saxon runes worksheets, the Anglo Saxon runes numbers, etc were all of a kind of their own and was found in the rich literature of that time. The purpose of the alphabets. Numbers, etc as we find in the present day in our language, the same was found through the Anglo Saxon futhorc runes during the British era. There are many Anglo Saxon runes poems which were retrieved and when followed, showed the rich background of people in terms of literature.

Anglo Saxon runes Cards

There are also different Anglo Saxon runes cards having different images. From animals to people to an image of great historic relevance, etc. There is a large variety of such cards of the British Era based on the Anglo Saxon futhorc runes. These were not only flash cards having a specific picture with a meaning but there are also playing cards based on the Anglo Saxon futhorc runes.

Specific symbols along with the Anglo Saxon futhorc runes numbers were used to construct these playing cards. There were several other activities which were carried out through the use of these Anglo Saxon futhorc runes cards.

Latin alphabets did start to slowly replace the Anglo Saxon futhorc runes but it still existed and was used by many people until the 10th century to the 11th century. By the time of the Norman Conquest of 1066, the use of Anglo Saxon runes became very rare and thus extinct and then within a short time period the language totally disappeared. Sadly enough only less than 200 artefacts survived which bears the Anglo Saxon futhorc runes, from at least a use of 5 centuries.

Read more about the meaning of anglo saxons.

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