They find one of the first Christian Anglo-Saxon burials

They find one of the first Christian Anglo-Saxon burials

The Cambridge Archeology Unit has found a 7th century body of a 16-year-old Anglo-Saxon girl, who had two unusual characteristics. First, she was buried with her royal bed, and secondly, that He wore a large gold and garnet cross on his chest.

In the first case, the burial with his bed, only 15 cases have been found in the whole of Britain and this would be the third case in the last 20 years. On the cross, it must be said that It is the fifth of its kind ever found, being another great find.

If what we are trying to know is how many burials with bed and cross have been found, we see a single case, for which we must go back to the nineteenth century, but has been poorly documented so it is not possible to confirm it as true, as it is the case with this new case.

The girl was undoubtedly a young woman belonging to the wealthy class, more if we stick to the remains found previously, in which all those who had been found with their beds used to be of high social status.

However, the most notable has been the Garnet-encrusted gold cross in the same style as the Staffordshire Treasury weapon accessories. An iron knife, a chain to hang around the waist, and some glass beads that were probably found in a bag at the end of the chain were also found.

They were also found tissue fragments on the knife and on the chain, which archaeologists hope will allow them to find out what clothes she was wearing when she was buried.

Some news we see on the internet echo this story as the first Christian grave found in Britain, but is not. It is not even close in dating and for that, we will do a little history.

Much of Britain was Christian when the struggle of the Roman Empire left it to its own devices in 410. Tertullian writes in the 3rd century that the British "have been submitted to Christ”And even entire cemeteries of Christian-Roman-Celts have been found throughout the territory.

The Anglo-Saxons, who occupied the territory of southern England when the Romans left it vacant, on the contrary, had their own polytheistic religion that was consistently adhered to for the next two centuries (approximately). On the other hand, the Celtic Christians in the west and east of England were more isolated and out of reach of the Roman Church, so they didn't make a great effort to fully convert.

The Pope Gregory I he noticed it and in 595 he sent St. Augustine of Canterbury, so called because he would become the first Archbishop of that region, to convert Etelbert, the pagan King of Kent in the year 597, converting both he and a large number of his subjects before the end of that year.

Now, since the young woman with the cross has not yet been dated with Carbon-14, there is no absolute date to mark his death, but the burials "with bed" Until now, have only been found in a very narrow period It spans the second half of the 7th century, and the gold and garnet cross is typical of between 650 and 680.

This means that she was a Christian, either converted or born, at least 80 years after the appearance of the first Anglo-Saxon converts. The girl therefore could not be the "first buried Christian", but it does have possibilities of being "the first buried Christian Anglo-Saxon”.

A very subtle appreciation, it is true, but that in the global of History it does have an impact since centuries of earlier Christianity would be denied in Britain.

After studying History at the University and after many previous tests, Red Historia was born, a project that emerged as a means of dissemination where you can find the most important news about archeology, history and humanities, as well as articles of interest, curiosities and much more. In short, a meeting point for everyone where they can share information and continue learning.


Video: Anglo-Saxons, Britain and Christianity Excellent Presentation