Anglo-Saxon England

  • Created by: ava.scott
  • Created on: 10-05-14 23:02

Anglo-Saxon England

Advantages

  • Administration: The shire was the administrative and fiscal unit of local government, through which law and taxation was enforced. Each shire was divided into hundreds.
  • Administration: Edward the Confessor had many clerks that helped his goverment business. These used writs and charters with the royal seal.
  • Finances: Extensive taxation using a efficient and controlled coinage system. There were around 60 mints, and all coins were taken in every 5 years to be exchanged. The system remained the same until 1971.
  • Use of danegeld could also be seen as a sign of Anglo-Saxon development because they remained stable, even with huge amounts of money going out.
  • Invasion: The consistent scandinavian invasions are a sign of Englands prosperity and wealth.
  • Invasion: However, although Ethelred could not get England back, Canute kept many English customs, including coinage, clerical authority and local goverment. This shows that they were developed and useful
  • Society:  It was based on three tiers; those who worked, those who prayed and those who fought. However, there was an emerging middle class of merchants and sailors. Village life also had a clear system. These show that society was developed and functional.

Disadvantages

  • Finance: The A-S kings were able to raise very significant amounts of money, but most of this went to the danegeld, especially  during the reign of Ethelred 987-1016. £48,000 was raised in 1012, and a further £82,000 in 1018. This could show how the Anglo-Saxon kings were unable to keep threats at bay.
  • Finance: The English coinage system was developed, but their economy was no where near as prosperous as The Byzantine Empire and the Muslim World. They had cities with millions of people, and were centres of trade for miles around.
  • Invasion: Perhaps a sign of weakness is the 1013 Invasion by King Svein of Denmark., and much later the Norman Conquest. A-S England was not developed militarily.
  • Rule: Succession was not classified fully, and this lead to many weaknesses when it came to choosing a new king. This is even seen in the Norman Conquest.

Evaluation

England was organised and prosperous, especially compared to other European countries.Despite its susceptibility to invasion, it easily appeased Scandinavians with huge amounts of money, that other countries would have not been able to provide.

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