Anglo-Saxon Culture

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Anglo-Saxon Culture The Anglo-Saxons had a much different culture from that of the twenty-first century. It was composed of both Christian and Pagan beliefs. They believed that good always conquers evil. Good is always represented as the hero, a big, strong, and larger than life warrior. Evil is most often represented by darkness and death. The climax of all Anglo-Saxon stories is the final battle between good and evil, in which good, of course, triumphs.

The "mead hall" was important to the Anglo-Saxons and their culture. Mead halls were massive, with incredibly high ceilings, and a large fireplace in the center. Inside were many tables, so that lots of warriors could eat all at once. The floors were usually made of dirt, but some of them were made of stone. Mead halls were reserved for warriors. Women weren't allowed, with the exception of the queen and her female servants.

All of the finest foods were served to these hungry warriors. The most common foods eaten there were various meats, especially wild boar, and lots of fruit. When they had a toothache, they would chew on aloe. Scops, or minstrels, playing lutes and singing songs, entertained them.

All heroes of the Anglo-Saxons had the same personal qualities. These qualities are those for which all good men, especially warriors, strived. Their heroes were always loyal, valiant, unselfish, just, courageous, generous, and faithful. For example, they were loyal to their country to the point that they were willing to die for it. In fact, it was common to sacrifice yourself for the well-being of others, especially in battle.

Warriors never bought their armor. Rather, they inherited it. Armor was handed down from one generation to the next, thus lasting many generations. Their "mail" was assembled by linking tiny pieces of metal together very compactly. The best mail was linked the closest, thus making a strong metal protection that was worn like a shirt. There was one problem with this form of defense, though. It was very heavy, thus weighing down the soldier. Because of this factor, individual strength was even more important for a successful warrior.