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Post  Admin on Thu Feb 10, 2011 10:40 am

7) What were the seven Germanic kingdoms? Where were they located? Were they of any
particular dialect or ethnic groups (Sandy, Marc-Andre)


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Post  Sandie on Thu Feb 17, 2011 10:40 am

In Anglo-Saxon times there were at various periods, seven Germanic kingdoms covering present-day England and Southern Scotland but not Whales and some other areas. There were thus seven areas of customary law.
Gradually the smaller kingdoms were absorbed as earldoms or counties of two or three larger kingdoms and eventually most of England was unified under the House of Wessex.
Seven Germanic kingdoms were formed, known historically as the Anglo-Saxon Heptarchy, into which, roughly speaking, Anglo-Saxon Britain was divided for nearly three centuries, until at last the supremacy, about the year 829, fell definitely and finally into the hands of Wessex.
The kingdoms were:

1. Northumbria Sometimes called
2. Mercia as Anglia
3. East Anglia
4. Essex
5. Wessex
6. Kent
7. Sussex

Those who came over were of the three most powerful nations of Germany – Saxons, Angles, and Jutes.
1. The Angles settled in and gave their name to what is now East Anglia, and also spread to Mercia (the Midlands) and further north to Northumbria (north of the Humber and south-east Scotland).
2. The Saxons remained in the south, a fact evidenced by the area names Sussex (=south Saxons), Essex (=east Saxons), and the old name for the south-west Wessex (=west Saxons).
3. The Jutes seems to have remained largely in Kent.

Some of the dialectal differences in today’s English may originate in the Germanic dialects spoken by these tribes. Linguistically the concept of the Heptarchy is extremely important for it is from that concept that we obtain the traditional Old English dialect names: West Saxon, Kentish, Mercian and Northumbrian.

As you can see, there are four main dialects: (1) Northumbrian – North of the Humber and south-east Scotland; (2) Mercian or Midland – further to the south and containing two main subdialects, West Midland and East Midland; (3) Kentish – south-east (including modern Kent and Surrey); and (4) West Saxon – south of the Thames, from Sussex to Devon, but excluding the Cornish-speaking area.

A history of English, p.56-57
History of English, p.61
The Cambridge History of the English Language, p.4-5


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Post  mavezina on Thu Feb 24, 2011 10:33 am

Question #7
what were the seven Germanic kingdoms? Where were they located? Were they of any particular dialect or ethnic groups?
Six major German tribes, the Visigoths, the Ostrogoths, the Vandals, the Burgundians, the Lombards, and the Franks participated in the fragmentation and the collapse of the Western Roman Empire. The Vandals were actually two tribes, the Asding and the Siling Vandals. The six major tribes, founded significant kingdoms which disappeared except one, the Franks, who gave their name to Western Europe in languages like Arabic.
Besides the German tribes that entered and conquered or damaged the Western Roman Empire, there were the tribes that remained back in Germany proper. These were the Saxons, the Alemanni, the Thuringians, and the Rugians. When the Rugians were destroyed by Odoacer in 487, a new confederation of Germans formed in their place, the Bavarians. All these tribes in Germany were eventually subjugated by the Franks, the Alemanni in 496 and 505, the Thuringians in 531, the Bavarians at some point after 553, and then finally the Saxons by 804. When Germany eventually separated as East Francia, the old tribal areas assumed new identities as the Stem Duchies.

Besides the The Suevi (or Sueves, Suebi, Sueben, or Schwaben) became an established Kingdom in Spain, centered in Galicia, with the Kings detailed in the table at right. When the Visigoths expanded from Aquitaine into Spain, the Suevi continued in the northwest. The Kingdom survived until the Visigoths completed their conquest of Iberia in 585. Nevertheless, the name of the Suevi survived in Germany. Many Visigothic names survive into modern Spanish. Of the Kings, the name of Rodrigo seems the most obvious example. Later names like Ferdinand (Ferdinando, Fernando) are also examples.
The Burgundians, like the Franks, did not play a great role in undermining the Western Empire. They moved into the vacuum of Roman power, and were conveniently ceded Roman lands (443 & 458).
Establishing themselves in North Africa and then taking to the sea, the (Asding) Vandals probably did the most damage in the long run to the structure of Roman power. This was the doing of one Vandal genius, Gaiseric, whose name significantly means "Caesar King."
The recovery of Italy by the Romans from the Ostrogoths turned out to be a devastating event for the country. Between 536 and 553 the war surged back and forth, probably doing more damage than all the previous fighting since the invasion of Italy by the Visigoths in 410.
Not until the 19th century would Italy ever again be the unified center of an important independent power. When the Lombards descended in 568, neither were they strong enough to secure the whole country nor were the Romans strong enough to throw them out. The peninsula was fragmented into the main Lombard kingdom in the north (Lombardy), a Roman salient from Rome to Ravenna and Venice, and Roman footholds in the south at Naples, Sicily, and other points.
The Alemanni ("all men") were a confederation of German tribes, an old adversary of Rome, from the 3rd century. While they occupied the left bank of the Rhine during the collapse of the Western Empire, they otherwise were not particularly active in the "fall" of Rome.


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