Literary Sources and Archaeology

John Hines

in The Oxford Handbook of Anglo-Saxon Archaeology

Published in print March 2011 | ISBN: 9780199212149
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Archaeology

Literary Sources and Archaeology

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  • Archaeology
  • Anglo-Saxon and Medieval Archaeology



The integrated study of archaeology and literature has a key role to play in attempts to characterize and understand the Anglo-Saxons. This article focuses on aspects of the relationship between literary sources in the Old English vernacular language and Anglo-Saxon archaeology; but any impression that Anglo-Saxon England was a monolingual culture must be exploded. A considerable range of Old English literary sources also had to deal with the profound topic of death. It is nothing new to observe that early Anglo-Saxon grave-goods correlate in various ways with the identity of the individual they were buried with. The critical and historical study of that literature ought to include informed consideration of the circumstances of its production in the real-world.

Keywords: Anglo-Saxon archaeology; Anglo-Saxons; Anglo-Saxon England; Old English literary sources; Old English vernacular language

Article.  7863 words. 

Subjects: Archaeology ; Anglo-Saxon and Medieval Archaeology

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