Anglo-Saxon British history timeline

The fascinating story of the Anglo-Saxons spans centuries, beginning at the withdrawal of Rome’s legions and ending with the turbulent Norman Conquest..

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Here, we map the significance of the Saxon era in a timeline that documents some of the most notable events in history; events that formed the basis of much of Britain’s culture, language and borders.

Anglo-Saxon timeline

410 Roman legions withdraw from Britannia after Alaric, king of the Goths, sacks Rome.

Sack of Rome History of the Saxons

Hengist History of the Saxons

c 449Hengist and Horsa land in Kent with three shiploads of Saxon warriors.


c 518 Lead by King Arthur, the British defeat the Saxons at Mount Badon.

King Arthur and the Battle at Mount Badon History of the Saxons

St Augustine History of the Saxons

597 St. Augustine lands in Kent, founds a Benedictine monastery at Canterbury, and begins his missionary work.

Iona Monastry Anglo Saxon Historyc 563 Columba founds the monastery at Iona.

Whitby Abbey History of the Saxons664Synod of Whitby.

635 St Aidan founds Lindisfarne monastery.

St Aidan History of the Saxons


731 Bede completes his Ecclesiastical History of the English People.

St Bede History of the Saxons

History of the Saxons

793-5 Danish raids on Lindisfarne, Jarrow and Iona.

Alfred the Great Saxon History878 Alfred the Great is driven into the Somerset marshes, but then defeats the Danes at Edington. Anglo Saxon Chronicles History of the Saxonsc 891-2 Earliest manuscript of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle.
c 919-20 Edward the Elder, son of Alfred, is acknowledged as overlord by Princes in West Wales, kings of Scotia, Strathclyde, and York. These were the first in a series of ‘submissions’ culminating in 973 with eight ‘British kings’ swearing fealty to Edward’s grandson, Edgar.

Edward the Elder History of the Saxons

960 Dunstan becomes Archbishop of Canterbury.

St Dunstan History of the Saxons

924-39 Reign of Athelstan, generally acknowledged first King of England.

King Athelstan History of the Saxons

1065 Westminster Abbey is consecrated.

Westminster Abbey History of the Saxons

1016 Cnut becomes King of England and, in 1018, also of Denmark.
King Cnut History of the Saxons

1066 Harold II , King of England, defeats the Norwegian king Harald Hardrada and Tostig at Stamford Bridge. Duke William II of Normandy defeats Harold II at Hastings.

Duke of Normandy History of the Saxons

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