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Gavriel View Drop Down
Pretorian
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  Quote Gavriel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Last Kingdom
    Posted: 20-Aug-2005 at 14:55
Alfred ,the only English King to be given the Title "Great" was the man responsible for saving the English society from the invasion of the Danes in around 860AD.Alfred was the King of Wessex and after the other Saxon Kingdoms had folded to the Danish assaults,it was left to him to  defeat the Danish pagans.
Alfred was a very pious man and very sick,a recent theory suggests he suffered from Crohns disease which causes accute abdominal pains,and from Chronic piles ( i  know,no laughting matter,but still..)
The Danes were called Northmen and NOT Vikings! the word Viking describes an activity rather than a race of people or a tribe,to go Viking meant to go raiding.Even though the Danes were raiders they were predominantly invaders and occupiers.The Danes made assaults on the Churches,nunneries and monastries,after all the Danes saw no reason to spare these places as they were Pagans and the Churches holded wealth.
Ivar the Boneless,Ubba,Halfdan and Guthrum were the main leaders of these invaders,all formidable warriors.
Alfreds fought against these people,naturally he didnt want his Englaland (saxon name)to be over run with smelly pagans who were destroying his beloved Church.In 878AD he  attacked the Danes and routed there Army,he pursued them to there fortress which he lay siege for 14 days.The Danes ravaged by hunger (they couldnt have prepared there supplies very well,if it only took 14 days,smacks of arrogance to me) sought peace terms.
Alfred realised that it would be impossible to get the Danes out of England all together so he signed the Treaty of wedmore.Guthrum converted to Christianity with Alfred as his Godfather and most of the Danes left Wessex and returned to east Anglia were they settled as Farmers.In 886AD Alfred negotiated a partiton treaty giving the Danes the North and east of England (A area known as Danelaw) and he brought west Mercia and Kent into the boundaries of Wessex.When the peace came Alfred concentrated on his Defence and Army.he reorganised the Thegns and the Fyrd into a rotation basis so he allways had a rapid reaction force available incase of further attacks,He allso started a building programme,making fortified market towns (Borough comes from the old English word "Burh"meaning fortress) all along his southern realm.
By stopping the Danish advance and consolidating territorial gains,Alfred started  the process by which his successors would eventually extend there power over the other Saxon kings and the ultimat unification of Anglo saxon England was to be led by Wessex.
It is for the defence of his country against a stronger enemy that Alfred (or  AElfred to give him his proper name) gets the title "Great" ,the only one of the English Kings to do so.
What do you think of AElfred?does he deserve the title "Great"?
gavriel


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Constantine XI View Drop Down
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  Quote Constantine XI Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20-Aug-2005 at 20:04

He absolutely deserves it. Here was a man with his back against the wall and a duty to do, he performed that duty stunningly. For centuries the British Isles had been ravaged time and again, seeing their growth and prosperity heavily retarded. Alfred's reign was an important one on the road to that island establishing itself as a dynamic civilization, his example proved to his people their capacity to unite and to defeat foreign invaders.

He deserves the title most definitely, being a man who did what he had to in VERY tough circumstances. Personally I think the title of "the Great" could justifiably be extended to some other English rulers.

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Gavriel View Drop Down
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  Quote Gavriel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20-Aug-2005 at 20:17
Hi constantine
Who else do you think deserves "the Great" title?i would be interested to know,thanks.

P.s why do the Aussies call the English Poms? LMAO please tell
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  Quote Constantine XI Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20-Aug-2005 at 20:36

Gday Gavriel. I don't know why we call you guys Poms, I would guess it was because during a war between us (aka some sporting competition where we were rivals) the English supporters must have worn pom poms on their hats. We would have used to word Pom to distinguish them. That's my guess though, I am not 100% sure. Off the record, I've heard some Aussies refer to England as "Pomgolia".  All in good fun, mate.

Well for the title "the Great" I would like to put up Edward I Longshanks. Inspite of the movie Braveheart which I am sure has pulled everyone's heart-strings, Eddy completed the subjugation of Wales which put an end to centuries of war and skirmishing. He nearly achieved the same in Scotland, had it not been for his idiot son. Had he had a worthier successor, perhaps Britain would have been launched as the dynamic world power it was fated to become, only much earlier.

Hm, well Elizabeth I for obvious reasons.

I "might" put Henry II up there also. I see him as similar to Edward Longshanks, a highly capable man whose valuable work was undone by unworthy successors.

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  Quote Loknar Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21-Aug-2005 at 05:58
Does anybody know how large Alfred's armies were?
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