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The Possible Reasons For Anglo Saxons To Migrate To Britain

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There have been a lot of debates about why the Anglo-Saxons migrated to Britain. First Saxon warriors raided England’s south and east coasts but they were defeated by the Romans. It is known that after Britain stopped being a part of the Roman Empire the Saxons attacked again and this time the British could not hold them back. That’s how the Anglo-Saxons settled down it England. Of course that whole process did not happen overnight but it took centuries.

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The earliest sources of information we have about the Anglo-Saxon migration were written by two monks who were living at the time the events were happening, Gildas and Bede. Bede was an Anglo-Saxon monk while Gildas was British monk. Bede tell us that his ancestors come from different parts of Denmark and Germany and gives us more information about which tribes they originate from and describes the process through his own perspective. They both provide us with a lot of information but it’s still not enough to tell for certain why the Anglo-Saxons migrated to Britain. One possible reason for this might have been the rising sea-levels in the areas of the Netherlands Denmark and Germany where the Saxon traditionally lived. Another possible reason is the fall of the Roman Empire which caused movement of great number of people. And maybe the most obvious of reasons – as the population grew they needed new lands for farming and making villages. According to a slightly different theory some sources say that the Saxon warriors were invited to come, to the area now known as England, to help keep out invaders from Scotland and Ireland such as the Picts and the Scots. After that instead of going back home they settled down.

There are many different reasons why the Anglo-Saxons migrated to England. Different sources provide us with different information so we can only speculate about what exactly happened then. The Dark Ages are particularly dark in Britain, in the sense that written records almost entirely dried up between the fifth and eighth centuries. I personally believe that there were more than one possible reasons to cause the migration process. An opportunistic mix of invasion and settlement might be a possible explanation. Actually some Saxons may well have already been in Britain long before any part of it became Roman.


  1. Schulz, Matthias. 2011. Britain Is More Germanic than It Thinks
  2. Ben Johnson .2014. Invaders! Angles, Saxons and Vikings
  3. Anglo-Saxons. Wikipedia. Retrieved March 7, 2019, from

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