Below is a detailed article about the Normans and the Saxons in 10th and 11th century England. The Anglo Saxons are a tribe from the West of Germany that settled in England. The Normans are French men of Viking origin that invaded England during the Anglo Saxon rule putting the Anglo Saxon rule to an end. Let us study about the Normans and the Saxons below.
Normans and Saxons in England
During the Norman invasion and the rise of power of the Norman King – William the Conqueror, the Anglo Saxon community still dwelled in England even though the Anglo Saxon government was overthrown and replaced by the new Norman government. The Anglo Saxons spoke old English and the Normans spoke their language french.
Since the King and his courtiers were all French, the official administrative language was now French. However, the local people were Anglo Saxon and they still spoke old English. The Normans were known to be adaptive in nature. They have adapted into the Frankish environment from their Viking roots.
They also adapted to English culture and language when they came into England. However, old English slowly started to become a blend of French and old English. this was also known as anglo-norman language. The Normans married the Saxon women and had families in England. This also caused major changes in the language spoken in England.
It is also known that Normans had begun to settle into England before the conquest and the Battle of Hastings. The Anglo Saxon king – Edward the Confessor went to Normandy to visit his mother who was in exile. when he returned back to England many Normans joined him. this is how the Normans were introduced to England.
After the invasion of England by William the Conqueror, almost 8000 Normans joined in to settle in England. they occupied various lands in England and settled in, found themselves a living and started to lead a life in England. They became one with Saxons and occupied a large amount of land.
The Anglo Saxons experienced a sudden change in government and also rebellions from the Norman invasion and other invasions that continued led many Anglo Saxons to flee out of England. Nearly 200 Anglo Saxons are said to have migrated to the Byzantine empire and near the coast of the Black Sea.
Together, the Normans and Saxons became anglo-norman and changed the architecture and systems of many factors in England such as politics and the clergy. They built monasteries and castles to protect themselves from the different Danish invasions that kept taking place in England.
The language itself shows the blend in the two cultures. Words such as pig and law are used by the Norman people while words such as pork and law came from the Anglo Saxon origin.
The Saxons and the Normans had one thing in common which is that both the communities adapted Christianity. This created a matter of some similarity among the two communities. the Normans also brought in a military service section in the Anglo Saxon society which was unknown in England.