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Title: Early Anglo-Saxon settlement in the East Midlands AD 450-850
Author: Hawkes, Michael Andrew
Awarding Body: University of Leicester
Current Institution: University of Leicester
Date of Award: 2007
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This thesis seeks to provide a synthesized review of the evidence for early- and middle Anglo-Saxon period settlement in the East Midlands, a region previously little discussed in academic literature. Much of the archaeological data relating to Anglo-Saxon England has come from artefacts recovered from burial sites, but what can we now learn from more recent fieldwork?;It is important to consider the Roman (and late Roman) urban and rural landscape which formed the framework into which Anglo-Saxon settlement had to blend. On the basis of extensive fieldwalking data which indicates the busy settlement pattern of the Roman period, it is likely that the more limited distribution of Anglo-Saxon settlement is genuine. This is taken to indicate that Anglo-Saxon activity was influenced by the native population and/or natural factors such as woodland, water courses and geological conditions. Using data from the HER/SMR as a basis, this study draws upon recent landscape survey projects and excavations from Leicestershire, Rutland and Northamptonshire in order to examine more closely settlement in the Roman to Anglo-Saxon transition period, as well as the process of change in the middle Anglo-Saxon period and the move towards settlement nucleation. Comparison is made with a number of sites in England and, to a lesser extent, on the Continent. There is also consideration of the value of place-names in assessing settlement types and strategies. It has been concluded that while there is some use of Roman sites, much Anglo-Saxon settlement is located in woodland fringe locations, close to water, which suggests a more self-sufficient, dispersed phase of settlement in the early phase of the period, while nucleation tends to focus on geologically-favourable sites, suggesting a return to a more outward-looking, market-based economy in the middle Anglo-Saxon period.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available