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Posts tagged Anglo-Saxon History (45)
Nos 11 to 20
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Frank Bridge
Lives of the Saints
Lost Innocence
In the fourth century, Britain’s Christians acquired a taste for watering down the mystery of their message.
By Saint Bede of Jarrow
(672-735)

WHERE the uproar of persecution subsided, Christ’s faithful, who during the crisis had buried themselves in woods and remote, lonely caves, went out in public. They renovated ruined churches, founded, built and finished off churches dedicated to the holy martyrs, unfurling them everywhere like victory banners, and celebrated feast days, doing everything with clean and holy hearts and lips.

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No. 11
George Frideric Handel
Bible and Saints
Anglo-Saxon Britain (410-1066)
The Last Commandment
Northumbrian poet Cynewulf imagines the farewell between Jesus and his Apostles, forty days after his resurrection.
By Cynewulf
(8th century)

“BE glad of heart! Never shall I wander; my love shall follow you unceasingly. My might I give you, and I am with you always, even unto the end, that through my gift none shall ever lack God.”

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No. 12
Scottish Traditional Song
Anglo-Saxon History
Anglo-Saxon Britain (410-1066)
The Battle of Nechtansmere
King Ecgfrith of Northumbria dismissed repeated warnings about his imperial ambitions.

WHEN Ecgfrith became King of Northumbria in 670, his realm had never been stronger. The ambitious pagan King Penda of Mercia had fallen at the Battle of the Winwaed in 655, and though Penda’s Christian heir Ethelred rebuffed Ecgfrith’s advance southwards in 679, lands to the north looked promising.

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No. 13
Franz Joseph Haydn
Lives of the Saints
St Erkenwald, Light of London
The seventh-century Bishop of London helped kings and clergy to shine Christian light into the darkness of mere religion.

ERKENWALD was born into a family of royal blood in the Kingdom of Lindsey around 630, and used his inheritance to found a monastery for himself in Chertsey near London, and another for his sister Ethelburga in Barking.

In 674, King Sebbi of Essex was baptised, and Erkenwald’s part in this, together with the high reputation of his two monastic communities, led Theodore, Archbishop of Canterbury, to appoint Erkenwald as Bishop of London in 675.

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No. 14
George Frideric Handel
Bible and Saints
Anglo-Saxon Britain (410-1066)
At Heaven’s Gate
The eighth-century English bishop and poet Cynewulf takes us to the threshold of God’s holy city, and gives us a choice.
By Cynewulf
(8th century)

OPEN, ye gates! Creation’s King would enter his citadel, would lead into the joy of joys a people (they are no small company) snatched from the devil by his Victory. Affinity shall angels and men have for ever after.

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No. 15
Charles Villiers Stanford
Extracts from Literature
Anglo-Saxon Britain (410-1066)
The Six Leaps of Faith
The eighth-century English bishop and poet Cynewulf explores a prophecy from the Song of Solomon.
By Cynewulf
(8th century)

WHEN first he leapt, he lighted on a woman, an untouched maid; and human form he took there (though without sin) that he might be Comforter to all that dwell on earth.

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No. 16
Pavel Chesnokov
Extracts from Literature
Anglo-Saxon Britain (410-1066)
Annunciation
Cynewulf reflects on the mystery of the appearance of the angel Gabriel to Mary.
By Cynewulf
(8th century)

YOUNG was the woman,
an untouched maid, he took for mother;
it was with no man’s caresses of love
that the bride grew great with child.
Never then, nor since, in this world
was any woman’s reward its equal;
it was Mystery, the Master’s secret.

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No. 17
Sir Hubert Parry
Anglo-Saxon History
The Battle of Brunanburh
Athelstan confirmed himself as King of the English, and also reawakened a feeling that all Britain should be a united people.

AFTER overcoming the Viking kingdom of Yorvik in 927, Athelstan found himself in control not just of Wessex but of the great kingdoms of the past, including Northumbria, Mercia and East Anglia – in other words, most of modern-day England.

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No. 18
George Frideric Handel
Lives of the Saints
St Chad and the Invisible Choir
Chad, the seventh-century Bishop of Mercia, seemed to be making a lot of music for one man.

BROTHER Owen was busy digging near Chad’s private oratory, when he heard the sound of many voices singing. That puzzled him: the Abbot, he knew, was praying alone, and everyone else away on errands. Moreover, the sound was coming from across fields to the southeast.

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No. 19
Sir John Blackwood McEwen
Lives of the Saints
Anglo-Saxon Britain (410-1066)
St Cuthbert and the Phantom Fire
The Northumbrian saint warned of an enemy who would stop at nothing to silence the good news.

CUTHBERT was once addressing a crowd gathered in the street of a small Northumbrian village, when he broke off in mid flow to say:

‘Whatever happens, never let yourselves be distracted by the devil’s trickery.’

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No. 20
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Polywords (183)
Make as many words as you can from the letters of a nine-letter word.
Latest: Weir
Added on Sunday January 14th, 2018
Doublets (34)
Turn one word into another, changing just one letter each time.
Latest: Stardust
Quickwords (46)
A mini-crossword of everyday vocabulary and general knowledge.
Triplets (23)
Find one common letter that will turn three words into three new ones.
Latest: Triplet No. 23
Guess these words letter by letter – before the cats are gone!
See how ingenious you can be in combining three randomly chosen words in one sentence.
Compose sentences showing the difference in meaning, grammar or usage between these words.
Practise your basic arithmetic, from multiplation tables to percentages.
Latest: Target Number
Take command of English grammar and composition with these traditional exercises.
Latest: Letters Game
A word search game with a dash of strategy.
From our Archive
By Jane Austen
(1775-1817)
First impressions prove to be quite misleading in the case of handsome, disagreeable Mr Darcy.
Music by Sir Charles Villiers Stanford
(1833-1897)
Despite setback after setback, Stanford was determined to hear his music played in public.
The saintly Bishop helped the captain of a merchant ship to cut through the red tape, and save his town from starvation.
Arkwright invented the factory, without which modern life would be impossible.
By Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
(1859-1930)
What Dr Mortimer saw beside the body of Sir Charles Baskerville sent him hastily to London, to consult Sherlock Holmes.

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Polyword ‘Burn’
Make as many words as you can with the letters below. All your words must be at least four letters long, and must also include the highlighted letter. What’s the nine-letter word?

SEE how many words you can make using the letters below. All your words must be at least 4 letters long, and must include the letter (change).

We found commonly used words, plus one 9-letter word. Can you do better?

Use each letter only once. But if there are e.g. two As, you can used them both.

Don’t count proper nouns such as April, Zeus, or Newcastle (pretty much anything that has to be spelled with a capital letter at the start), or acronyms like HMRC.

Don’t just add -S for plurals or third person singular verbs, e.g. CAT → CATS or SPEAK → SPEAKS.

More Word Games
A word search game with a dash of strategy.
Guess these words letter by letter – before the cats are gone!
Do you know ‘withdraw’ (7 letters), and ‘domesticated’ (4 letters)?
Changing one letter at a time, see if you can start with CHIP and finish with PUTT.
Find the magic letter that can change three words into three different ones.