Teutonic Britannia – Before the Anglo-Saxons

Boar Helm

A boar crested helmet made in the likeness of the 7th century Northamptonshire Helm

[The following is a post made by Þórbeorht on the 28th of October, 2011 in the Fifeldor blog.]

In the year 43 CE, Batavians attached to the XIV Legion were part of the Roman force that fought in Britain against the Celts at the battle of Medway River. In the 2nd century, Marcus Aurelius employed Macromanni to fight the British. By the third century, defeated Burgundians and Vandals were transferred by Rome to Britain. By the 220s-230s, Rome had stationed Frisian auxiliaries in Britain. In 306 an Alemannic king by the name of Crocus and his troops were in York. By 372, the Alemannic king Fraomar was in Britannia leading his troops under Valentinian I’s banner – meaning that Alemanni had been in Britain for nearly a century. By the time Hengest and Horsa arrived in 446 CE and began the Anglo-Saxon invasion, Teutonic peoples had been consistently fighting, and no doubt settling, in Britain for at least four hundred years. What made the “Anglo-Saxon Invasion” so remarkable wasn’t that Teutons were crossing the channel, conquering, and settling Britain – that much they had been doing for quite some time after all. What made it remarkable was that they were finally doing so under their own boar-banners rather than under Rome’s eagle-standard.

About Þórbeorht Línléah

Ealdorblótere (chief priest) at Whitthenge Heall of the Ealdríce, an Anglo-Saxon Théodish fellowship. Author of Of Ghosts and Godpoles: Theodish Essays Pertaining to the Reconstruction of Saxon Heathen Belief, Both Old and Anglo (2014). Author of Þæt Ealdríce’s Hálgungbóc: The Théodish Liturgy of Þæt Ealdríce (2015, 2016). Þórbeorht resides in Richmond, Virginia with his wife Eþelwynn and two daughters.
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