Angry Little Tank

Rants, chants and cants....all written while wearing no pants!

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Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States

Friday, July 14, 2006

The Friday Wiki

In an effort to further enhance my edification, and inspired by the Science Friday posts on the Daily Kos, I present to you the Friday Wiki. It will be a quick and simple explanation of a random topic I’ve researched on Wikipedia.

And yes, links will be included.

This inaugural post will deal with The Saxons. Yes people it’s the “S” in WASP, but what are its origins? Most people have a vague idea that it means “English” and in a way they’re right, but in another way they’re way wrong. Read on.

The Saxons were a particularly ferocious and barbaric tribe from what we now call Germany. Yes, Germany. Around the 5th century A.D. the Saxons were part of a group of Germanic tribes that were either invading or generally just migrating to the Roman outpost of Brittania, what we would call modern day England. Other tribes that joined the Saxons in this admittedly confusing endeavor (I mean what was the attraction? Sorry England) were the Jutes, the Frisians, and the Angles.

The latter tribe joined forces with the Saxons to settle/invade/pillage most of the farmlands in southern England and became known as the Anglo-Saxons. The term “English” itself is a derivation of Anglo-Saxon. The existing Britons (of Roman origin) were driven to the area we now call Wales. Three main Anglo-Saxon regions were formed to the south, east and west being called Sussex, Essex and Wessex respectively.

So now you know the origins of the term Anglo-Saxon. You also know why the Welsh consider themselves the “true” British people and proudly call themselves Welsh rather than English. I don’t speak German but those who do say that the language is remarkably similar to English. This would certainly explain why.

Now you know

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