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vation of Vortigern by Rowena, who said to him “Wæs hæl,” is an invention of the same stamp as a thousand others-contrived to account for the name of the wassail bowl.*
Stories of awful massacres were sure to arise out of the state of things that existed in Britain for some centuries; yet from these disjointed tales, and the presumed disappearance of Celtic from the map of England, was established the belief that, the old Britons were all exterminated. Every kind of modern research is against the assumption. The Anglo-Saxon language is no longer the Angle or Saxon of the continent. It has been remarked in the imperfect investigation of the graves, that the Saxon habits, as seen through the sepulchral remains, are strongly Romanised. How could this happen, except through the Celts ?
It has also been asserted that tlie Britons emigrated en masse. Let us inquire is there any traditionary evidence that a number of Britons did leave the country? In the county of Tipperary, in Ireland, there is a hill known as Cnocshanbrittas, the hill of the old Britons, on which stand two Cromleacs and a giant's grave. This name, doubtless, rests on a tradition that a party of fugitives had reached Ireland. Brecknock, in Wales, I believe to be of British foundation-Bret cnock, the Britons' hill. Cornwall, and Bretagne furnish no such evidence. And it must be observed, that all those districts had then as dense a population as they could support, and that emigrant Britons might as well have remained to be massacred, as flee for refuge (according to the old story) to the mountains. But, as we have seen, at the bottom of all such exaggerations there is generally a grain or two of truth.
Between the Germans and Scandinavians of Europe, a marked distinction always existed. The first permanent Gothic invaders of Britain were Jutes, and, therefore, Scandinavian. On the contrary, the Saxons were Germanic; but there is every reason to suppose that the Angles were a mixed tribe, containing both Danes
Fr. vaisselle, plates and dishes. It. Sasellamento, gold or silver plate. The wassail bowl was the piece of plate of the house.
† Archæological Index, by J. Y. Akerman.
The last-mentioned emigrated in such numbers, that, says the Saxon Chronicle, their country lay waste for many years between the Jutes and the Saxons. The marshy and unhealthy state of the district is the only probable cause of this total desertion. Of the two great invading tribes, the Saxons were perhaps the more cruel, as the Britons who left the country appear to have spoken of none but the Saxon. Thus, in Irish and Welsh, it became the name of an Englishman, and eventually a synonyme for a stranger.
The remoteness of Cumbria, and the difficult nature of the ground, saved these counties, from the storm that broke over the south of Britain. Moreover, the length of time that elapsed between the first landing of the Angles on the east coast, and their invasion of Cumbria-about a century and a half—is strong proof that there was no conquest of Britain, in the modern acceptation of the word. The first Angle invasion of this district is, probably, that which is mentioned in history as a conquest under Ecgfrid, A. D. 685. We can trace them satisfactorily, by the termination ton, from the eastern coasts, until they spread and diverge through the most fertile parts of Cumbria.
The Roman roads were everywhere taken advantage of by the invaders, but especially by the Angles. They entered Cumbria by the road that accompanied the Wall, their first settlement being Walton. From this place they crossed the river to Brampton, and having gained the road then called Wadling, they advanced through the forest in the direction of Penrith ; amongst other places establishing themselves at Plumpton, Hutton, and, finally, at Newton. In this part of Cumberland we have them fully identified; the people who lived about them knew well who they were, and therefore named the forest Inglewood, the wood of the Angles.
The Maiden Way likewise brought its share, precipitating one part thereof on Aldston, Dufton, Marton, Bolton, and Orton, and directing the other by the Ambleside road, “ High Street," to Clifton, Helton, and Bampton. In the north, besides those people who entered the forest, two other streams left the wall, one going
in the direction of Longtown, another westward towards Wigton. The Cumrew of the fell-sides were thus isolated from the rest of Cumbria, but we subsequently find them uniting with the Angles at Cumwhinton, Cumwhitton (C. C. cwm, a valley).
The Saxons entered Cumbria from the south. Under their most peculiarly distinctive mark, the termination ham, they do not seem to have made much impression even on Lancashire. In Westmorland, their principal settlements were near the lakes and rivers ; and we find them between Kendal, Morecambe, and Windermere, and near Ullswater and the Eamont. We cannot assume the arrival of the Saxons in Westmorland to have been earlier than the close of the eighth century. As an invasive or colonising people, they never entered Cumberland.
The movements of the Danes in Cumbria are more difficult to determine than those of either Angles or Saxons. Identifying them by their peculiar terminations, the most usual of which are by and thorpe, we find them more or less spread through the two counties. Of the Danish population of the north of England, a large proportion always continued to lead an unsettled, roving life, prepared to take part in any kind of commotion. After the pressure of defeat, some of those marauders would find in these counties a secure place of refuge. Through Cumberland they extended themselves into Scotland, and this points more particularly to an immigration from Yorkshire.
The Danes were not the only Scandinavian people that colonised these counties. Some Norse endings testify to the presence of a few Norwegians. One portion of these, perhaps, reached Cumberland by sea, but a great part might easily find their way over land with their kinsmen. Prof. Worsaae adduces evidence to show that the bulk of the Scandinavians of England (including Cumbria) were Danes. In Lincolnshire, the most purely Danish part of England, he reckons two hundred and twelve names of places ending in by, and in Cumberland and Westmorland sixty-three. The endings by and thorpe are scarcely known in the Norwegian districts of Scotland, the Islands, the Isle of Man, or Ireland. And this is tolerably conclusive on the Scandinavians of Cumbria.
The last people that entered the north-west of Europe, came in two divisions, the Swedes and Norwegians. The latter crossed, or passed round, the gulf of Bothnia ; and having penetrated the Kiölen mountains, they settled on the coasts of the Atlantic. Both these tribes were provided with iron weapons, but continued to burn the corpse down to a late period. The Iron age thus introduced into the north, flourished in Sweden and Norway long before it made its way into Denmark. It is remarkable, too, that the Iron graves of Denmark contain exclusively unburnt corpses. In these data we possess an additional means of ascertaining what claim the Norwegians may have to the colonisation of Cumbria.
The immigration of the Angles, though well-defined and widely spread, does not seem to have been very strongly supported by numbers. Their attitude on the map of the whole kingdom is that of a dominant people, who penetrated by bold expeditions, where others only reached by the slow progress of population.* It need scarcely be observed, that the fact of the Angles having given their name to the country and to the language, is quite in accordance with this characteristic. But as neither Angles nor Saxons tended very much to fill these counties, it remained for the Danes and the Norsemen to assume an apparent preponderance on the map that did not belong to their numbers. It is well known, too, that the Dane never scrupled to make himself a home as the cuckoo builds a nest, and that his only reparation was to change or disguise the name, if he were able. Penrith, in Cumberland, is a remarkable instance of the Danish mode of colonisation. This place remained a Cambro-Celtic settlement, with, of course, a considerable population, until the
• In the Angle parts of England the ending ton frequently appears in names of places of importance. It is not so in the Saxon parts, where in such cases ton is never found except as an addition to the older name. Northampton, Southampton, are examples, in which the Saxons could not have added ton to their own ham, the former having had with them only the lesser meaning of a farm or farm-house. Cf. Wolverhampton and Birmingham. The accent on the second syllable shows the construction of the compound.
honest Danes “made their own" of it, as we find by the names with which the interior of the town abounds.*
Nevertheless, together with this unfortunate want of discrimination in affairs of property, the Dane possessed many good qualities that it is useless any longer to deny, at least in England. Chief of these was the disposition to unite with those about him, which must have peculiarly fitted him to be the colonist of a distracted country, such as England was for a length of time. The fusion is not so apparent in Cumbria, though the points of junction with the other peoples are sufficiently numerous. Celts and Danes have united in many places, the most remarkable of which is Oughterby (Upperby); Danes and Angles, at Skirwith and Dalston (the town in the dale); Danes and Saxons, at Askham, Hackthorpe, Dallam (dale-ham), and Kempley, near Penrith, and in Westmorland. But there was also in the Dane a stubborn, restless individuality, contrasting with the easy, centralising disposition of the Saxon, that must have exercised a wholesome influence on the laws and constitution of the country. Without granting all that Prof. Worsaae claims for his countrymen, there can scarcely be any doubt that to the Danes we owe our system of by-laws, Scotch bir-laws (D. by, byr, a town), that is, laws made for a town, perhaps the most valuable part of our present mode of government.
Penrith has thus been converted into Perith, though it is not meant to be insinuated that old predatory habits appear in the change.