Historical Olde English Male Anglo Saxon Names

Historical Olde English Male Anglo Saxon Names –

How do you compile a list of the best male Anglo Saxon names when there are so many languages, never mind the uncountable number of names to choose from? It was believed to be in the year 449 CE when the first of the actual Anglo-Saxon invaders set foot in Britannia. Among them were three primary groups including the Angles, the Saxons, and the Jutes.

The Angles hailed originally from Angeln in Northern Germany. The Saxons by and large came originally from Lower Saxony in Northern Germany. Finally, the Jutes were Jutland which was located within portions of what is now modern day Denmark. The Jutes or Danes may not be remembered by name, but their language and culture would help to create the Olde English language.

Even the name of the language, English, is derived from the Anglais or Angles peoples. The integration of their common tongues and their unique languages would all be integrated into the Scots, Welsh, Gaelic, Irish, Cornish, Manx, Romani (which would soon become Angloromani) and Shelta languages.

The “common” language that would be formed from this mix would come to be known as English, or more precisely, Old English. After the Norman Conquest of 1066, the integration of the Norman variant of the French language would again force linguistic evolution or linguistic conquest on the people of Britannia.

This would become known as Middle English becoming more commonly spoken circa 1100 CE. This of course, laid the foundations for Modern English that is used today. The Norman French is specified as it had also endured both linguistic conquest and linguistic evolution, most notably after the coronation of Duke Rollo, of Viking fame.

It would ultimately be the illegitimate grandson of Rollo, Duke William would go on to conquer England for the Normans.

Were Anglo Saxons And Vikings Together In The Invasion Of Britannia

Among the Angles especially, but also among the Saxons, there were many Danish people. Since many of these soldiers, legionnaires, and other Danish people fighting with the Romans in Britain, as well as those that came as farmers to settle and as invaders, would all have been seamen to some degree.

Since the word vikings refers to any of the seafaring people, there were a great many vikings among the Danes. The word “Vikings” is Scandinavian in origins, based on the word Vik meaning a bay, a creek, generally one running into the oceans, or even a smaller fjord. When boiled down into simpler terms, the word Viking effectively means river pirates.

There is also a great discussion to be had among many scholars and theologians interestingly enough. The period of the Dark Ages where the Anglo-Saxons occupied most of Britannia or modern day Great Britain was labeled differently, often based on selected facts and personal bias exhibited as prejudice.

Most of the scholars of the day were Christian monks. In their records, they speak both of the retreat of Rome, and an awful accounting of bloodthirsty peoples coming to their shores and committing terrible acts of violence on the Bretons. Later monks, by then, Anglo-Saxons themselves, and largely descendants of the invaders, would label these invasions as being conducted by Holy Warriors, spreading the true Christian faith.

In fact, some of the Anglo-Saxon “invaders” had been part of the Roman legions and Roman communities within Britannia. Those that would stay were often called settlers, and would fight for both the Bretons and for the Anglo-Saxon tribes according to some accounts of the period.

Why Male Anglo Saxon Names And Not Just Viking Names

The events of the times may be considered an invasion on the one hand. On another, their Anglo descendants would label them as saviors, introducing the true Christian faith to the local people. And some accounts list the Anglo-Saxons as largely being comprised of settlers, having stayed behind after the retreat of Rome.

The Old Norse vikings would begin raiding the now largely domesticated Anglo Saxon Bretons in 793. As recorded in The Anglo Saxon Chronicle: “on the Ides of June the harrying of the heathen destroyed God’s church on Lindisfarne, bringing ruin and slaughter”.

By this time, England had been divided into five independent Anglo Saxon Kingdoms. East Anglia, Kent, Mercia, Northumbria, and Wessex had all been established as Anglo Saxon Kingdoms, but had suffered from competing and constant warring among the Kingdoms.

At the time, there were no standing armies, so most battles would be fought by common farmers and other average citizens conscripted into service. There would only be a select few skilled and well-trained soldiers, and they would usually be guarding the larger fortified portions of the kingdoms, rarely called out into the chaos of battle early on.

The purpose behind research and learning the Olde English names so common at the time, is to offer some kind of memorial to all those who were lost in the evolution resulting in the literal formation of the modern Western world. Additionally, it allows for the selection of more meaningful and interesting male Anglo Saxon names.

Lists of names for the other Old English languages of Britannia should and likely will all have unique articles as time allows. In the meantime, if there is anything that you would really like to see, you can join BabyNamesPedia on their social media accounts and let us know.

20 Of The Best Historical Male Anglo Saxon Names

Alfred – The name Alfred may seem rather mundane in terms of the names usually included in the lists of baby boy names from BabyNamesPedia, but holds a special place in terms of Anglo Saxon names. Alfred the Great was so named because of his series of successes during his reign of Wessex.

Arlo – This entry into the best male Anglo Saxon names varies between the Spanish variant and the German name. The Spanish name is the literal word for a Bayberry. The Germanic name that would have been more prevalent in Anglo-Saxon Britannia means someone who is manly and strong.

Athelstan – This is the modern variation of the Anglo Saxon name Aethelstan. This name may have enjoyed a renewed interest based on the character from the History Channel series Vikings. The name is from the Old English list of names for boys but remained even after the Norman Conquest of England, though not as popular as it once had been. This name means a Noble Stone or in some interpretations, a holy altar, commonly made of stone.

Bede – Also known as Saint Bede or Bede the Venerable, Bede was one of the most prevalent scholars and historians of the later Dark Age or Early Middle Age, circa 700 CE. Bede was a monk at the Monastery of St. Peter and the Monastery of St. Paul in Northumbria and of Anglo descent. He recorded the Anglo-Saxon conquest of England as a righteous salvation of the people of Britannia, introducing them to the “true” Christian belief.

Borden – This male Anglo Saxon name is commonly interpreted in two different ways. In the Olde English it was commonly used to describe the pasture or fields and areas for a boar. In the original Germanic and Danish list of names it was a derivative of Bjorn and meant the valley or field of the bear.

Cadman – This name was originally introduced with the Anglo Saxon conquest of Britannia but has come to be a fairly common name throughout Ireland. The name was commonly used to describe a warrior. It should be noted that there were no standing armies at the time, though a small group of professionally trained soldiers would have been kept in order to guard and protect strongholds and the focal points of kingdoms. The castles would not become commonplace in England until after the Norman Conquest.

Cyneric – This name can be interpreted in two different ways. In the period before the Anglo Saxon conquest of Britannia the name meant someone who would wield the power. It may have referred to tribal leaders in one form, or perhaps an Earl or some other individual in a position of power. In Old English the name means someone who is Royal or a part of a royal family.

Daegel – This is another male Anglo Saxon name that has two different and distinct meanings from both before and after the English Conquest. In the Germanic mythology this name referred to a night dweller, likely (though not always) the Dark Elves. In the Old English the name was used for a location first, and after that, indicated a person from that area. This is also recorded as a literary name for boys from the Arthurian legends and the knights of the Round Table as this was the name of the boy hired by Morgana to lure Merlin away from Camelot to allow her access without detection.

Eckbert – The name Eckbert or Ecgbert is an Anglo Saxon name for boys that can mean either the edge of a sword or a renowned and capable swordsman. The name has remained popular throughout the ages in Germany though the spelling has changed. In the modern era, the most popular variant of the name is Egbert.

Ethelburt – Ethelburt is the Anglicized variation of the Anglo Saxon name Aethelbert. This name means someone who is both noble and famous. In some interpretations it may also be interpreted as someone who is honorable and intelligent. The name was used by different Kings but fell out of favor after the Norman Conquest of England in 1066.

Ethelwulf – Modern variation of Aethelwulf, King of the West Saxons in Wessex and father to Alfred The Great. He did manage to create a pact with Mercia and through their combined efforts, was able to fend off the continuing raids by Danish vikings. Despite being at least partially deposed, four of his sons would go on to rule as Kings of Wessex.

Freeland – This name is considered by some to be a variation of the name Freeman, and while it may be similar, it remains very different at the same time. Most people in the Early Middle Ages or Dark Ages only used first names. This name indicated someone who lived on freelands or lands not under the reign of a monarch, or the rule of landlords or earls.

Gyldas – Gyldas is the anglicized version of the historical Breton name Gyldas. Gildas Sapiens was also commonly known as Gildas the Wise. Gyldas was a Christian monk and scholar in the sixth century. It should be noted that Gyldas was not an Anglo-Saxon name but is relevant here largely because of his witness to, and recording of the actual Anglo-Saxon conquest of Britannia.

Heorot – This male Anglo Saxon name in the modern vernacular is commonly shortened to Hart which is a name for a stag or male deer. In the Old English variant, it was more directly related to the original meaning. Among the Germanic and Danish tribes, it meant the Hall of the Stag, or in Old English, a House of the Stag.

Kenhelm – This is the modern spelling of the male Anglo Saxon name Cenhelm. The name is comprised of two parts. The first part of the name is derived from cene which means bold or brave. The second portion of the name is “helm” which at the time meant a protector or protection. The word helm in the Modern English generally is restricted to a protection for the head.

Millar – This is a female or male Anglo Saxon name that just means a millworker, or someone who is from the mill. In its original form it was the actual person who ran the mill and who would grind grains or cereals, or finish preparing wood to be used as timber or lumber.

Ordway – This name is originally from the Danish influence in the Anglo Saxon names and means someone with a strong arm. In its original form, it meant someone who fought with a spear in hand.

Pendragon – The name Pendragon or Pandragon is common to Arthurian legend and crosses many different borders, though it is most commonly associated with England during the Dark Ages. The name originally means the enclosed or protected lands of the Dragon. The dragon in Arthurian legend is seen as symbolic of great rulers or leaders, most notably perhaps, epitomized in Arthur Pendragon.

Reule – This name had many variations even during the middle of the Dark Ages. Rawls may have been the most common variant in Old English. The name means the famous wolf, though the myths and legends of the wolf in Old England should also be considered. The wolf was both legendary and feared in Old England, throughout the Middle Ages leading up to the medieval period.

Siegbert – The final entry for the list of male Anglo Saxon names also had many variations in the Olde English language. Siegbert is the most common variant, though it may also have been introduced as Sigebehrt or Sigebert, though these derivations of the name were not as popular. The name itself means a bright victory, a brilliant victory, or a famous history in terms of sagas and epics of past generations.