Group Leaders: Alan & Susanna
Venue: The Swarthmore Centre, Mutley Plain
Day: 3rd Wednesday Time: 14:00

YEAR 2: The Anglo-Saxons 450 – 1066

Jan.17 BYZANTIUM, ISLAM & THE HOLY ROMAN EMPIRE

Feb.21 KING ALFRED & THE VIKINGS

Mar.21 LIFE IN ANGLO-SAXON ENGLAND Part 1

Julius Work Calendar (January)

What was life like for the common person in Anglo Saxon times? In this session we shall be looking at four areas: farming and agriculture; church and monasteries; the legal system and the language and the arts.

Apr.18 THE EXETER BOOK

The Exeter Book, written about 970, is the oldest of only 4 surviving books of Anglo-Saxon literature anywhere in the world, and has been at Exeter Cathedral ever since Leofric, first Bishop of Exeter and Chancellor to King Edward the Confessor, gave it to the church around 1072. Come and see a replica of this world-famous book and hear all about it from the Cathedral Librarian and Archivist.

May.16 AETHELSTAN KING OF ALL ENGLAND

Athelstan presenting a book to St Cuthbert

Son of Edward the Elder and grandson of Alfred the Great, Aethelstan is recognised as the first King of all England. He came to the throne in 924 but leading figures in Wessex were slow to accept him as their king. His father, Edward the Elder, had previously conquered the Viking territories of Mercia and East Anglia and in 926 Aethelstan arranged for one of his sisters to marry Sihtric, who ruled the Viking kingdom of York. When Sihtric died the following year, Athelstan seized the opportunity to invade and in July 927 he was accepted as ruler over the whole of England. Athelstan never married and on his death in 939 he was succeeded by his half brother Edmund.

Jun.20 LIFE IN ANGLO-SAXON ENGLAND Part 2

Foundation Charter of the Diocese of Exeter 1050

A second look at the life in Anglo Saxon times. This session will cover the military, domestic life and architecture, social divisions and organisation. There will also be a talk on Devon’s churches.

Jul.18 KINGS & QUEENS OF THE LATER ANGLO-SAXONS

Queen Emma

The last session of our second year covers the final 70 years before the Norman invasion of 1066. Central to this story is Emma, Queen Consort of England, Denmark and Norway, an active player in the political scene herself, and wife first to Aethelred the Unready, then after his death to King Cnut, and mother to Edward the Confessor. But all the time, behind the scenes, the treacherous Earl Godwine, the Alistair Campbell of those times, was pulling the strings…..

Aug.15  No Meeting

YEAR 3: The Normans 1066 – 1154

YEAR 4: The House of Plantagenet 1154 – 1215

YEAR 5: Crown versus People (Part 1) 1215 – 1327

YEAR 6: Crown versus People (Part 2) 1327 – 1381

YEAR 7: The Waning of the Middle Ages 1381 – 1485