How authentic is this scene?

Sep 2015
300
ireland
#11
The following dna map appears to show an Amglo-Saxon invasion. You can see all the A-S by their red squares right? What many neglect is that the author of the map points out that all British DNA is closer to each other, than to any European general type. Despite the apparent labels shown on this map, people in Britain are similar, regardless of location. Given that the A-S never conquered, or even inhabited substantial areas of Britain, it is almost certain no A-S invasion took place.

What is certain is that bad science was involved in the Georgian and Victorian eras in perpetrating the A-S invasion myth. This is where 'science' is used to prove a theory based on politics or culture, rather than literature being used to add 'colour' to actual FACT.

The reason for the marginal differences in DNA can be explained by geography, specifically geology.
To my untrained eye, this is like a bucket of crabs and I`m not sure what your point is. If your map was extended would I expect to see lots of red squares on the other side of the channel? Show me a DNA map from 300 AD to compare it to and then we might have something to talk about. I`m not suggesting that there was a mass invasion with a large standing army. More like mobile war bands numerous enough to instill fear in the locals and precipitate a westwards migration.
 

Bart Dale

Ad Honorem
Dec 2009
6,866
#12
The current DNA studies don't indicate any large scale replacement in England by Anglo Saxon invaders, as Gilda's works would seem to imply.

The mystery is why the people of England would adopt the Anglo Saxon language if the invaders were as few as DNA studies seem to suggest. It not like the Anglo Saxon's we're significantly more technologically or culturally advanced than the people of Britain, not like the Romans who were not only more advanced, but part of a much wider empire, both giving incentive for people to adopt Latin.

The Normans were also few in number, but did not manage to eradicate the English language, although they did alter it greatly. The question is why was Old English able to completely replace both Celtic and Latin based languages while Norman French was not able to completely replace English?
 

Chlodio

Ad Honorem
Aug 2016
3,251
Dispargum
#13
@ Concan
Exaggeration isn't lying. It's a form of emphasis. When I was a kid and Mom was late with dinner I'd say, "Mom, I'm starving to death." She knew I wasn't literally dying, but she understood I was really hungry. When Gildas said, Britain's cities were deserted/dismantled/neglected his contemporaries knew that wasn't literally true but they also didn't think he was lying. He was emphasizing the decline of the cities.

I also suspect you're applying more extreme definitions to those words than I am. If a city's population declined by 50% I might use the word 'deserted' in the literal sense. If it only declined by 30% I might use the word 'deserted' as an exaggeration. If a city's population declined by 50% it only makes sense that the remaining, smaller population could not use or maintain all of the buildings. The unused buildings would first be neglected and later they would be dismantled. I don't interpret Gildas' descriptions as being significantly different than what happened on the continent.

Where are you finding this passage in Gildas? Chapter 26?
"And yet neither to this day are the cities of our country inhabited as before, but being forsaken and overthrown, still lie desolate" Variations existing from one translation to the next.
He's talking about urban decline but I don't see genocide. Overthrown suggests the Saxons have captured the cities, but being barbarians they don't know how to manage a city so urban services break down and people move away. Romans were proud of their cities. The word 'civilized' literally means city dweller. So of course urban decline is something Romans like Gildas (technically post Roman) would notice and write about. I notice he doesn't mention what rural life is like, at least not here.

As to Patrick's Confessions, one thing I've learned about hagiography and other religious writing is that you can't trust it. Now there's some figurative language for you. Some numbers have spiritual significance. It rained on Noah for 40 days and nights, the Jews roamed in the wilderness for 40 years, Jesus fasted for 40 days and nights, 40 days between the resurrection and the ascension. I think 28 is one of those numbers. Certainly three is one of those spiritual numbers - three days in the tomb, three figures in the Godhead. I can't believe it takes three days to sail from Ireland to Britain. I'm skeptical that Patrick's claims of a three day sail and 28 day wandering were literally true.
 
Sep 2015
300
ireland
#14
Yes Chlodio, you`ve quoted the correct passage...."sed desertae dirutaeque hactenus squalent". I`m relying on a specific translation but I`d consider "desertae" to be the important word in the line. Put the line into Google translate and you`ll get "deserted, dirty and destroyed".

I`m with you on the hagiographies, there was a lot of rubbish written about Patrick, some of it quite early, but the Confessio is his own writing and considered to be genuine. I also remember in the past looking for some kind of scriptural significance in the number 28 and couldn`t find anything but if anyone has an opinion on that I`d be interested to hear it. The problem with the 3 days is we don`t know where he departed from. In the 5th century there were a number of Irish clans from the southern coastal area active in Wales and Cornwall so if he had to sail from Cork harbour for example, it might take 3 days. I`d like to find a scriptural significance for 28 before I`d question 3.

With regard to your point about how it all happened on the continent also, I`d say yes it did, but Britain is an island and it makes sense to think that re -population would take significantly more time which is why towns were still deserted in Gildas` lifetime.
 
Last edited:
Jan 2015
2,762
MD, USA
#15
...I`d also suggest that a town that had it`s population reduced by 90% in a war would have suffered a genocide but I know that your 10% is only a speculative number.
But war is not the only reason for population decline, in a town or in general. For instance, we know that the catastrophe of 536 led to crop failures and famine, and that's going to make people leave their homes in search of food or any place not as hard-hit. A town without food coming in from surrounding farms is going to empty out very quickly, without a weapon being swung.

Matthew
 
Sep 2015
300
ireland
#16
But war is not the only reason for population decline, in a town or in general. For instance, we know that the catastrophe of 536 led to crop failures and famine, and that's going to make people leave their homes in search of food or any place not as hard-hit. A town without food coming in from surrounding farms is going to empty out very quickly, without a weapon being swung.

Matthew
Although it`s not certain, I`d be confident that Gildas was writing before 536. He was warning that bad things would happen because of the general fall off in morality and the climate catastrophe of 536 was such a good opportunity to force his point that he wouldn`t have ignored it. But he never mentioned it.
 
Aug 2014
3,611
Australia
#17
There is a good explanation for the population decline in the 6th century that had nothing to do with war.
1. A volcanic eruption in Iceland that covered much of Europe in ash and caused the coldest decade in 2000 years.
2. A massive outbreak of bubonic plague in 541, which killed tens of millions.
 
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Sep 2015
300
ireland
#19
There is a good explanation for the population decline in the 6th century that had nothing to do with war.
1. A volcanic eruption in Iceland that covered much of Europe in ash and caused the coldest decade in 2000 years.
2. A massive outbreak of bubonic plague in 541, which killed tens of millions.
Gildas mentioned none of this.
 

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