Entertainment / Literature / Danelaw: (Anglo-Saxon, Dena lagu) The region of northeast England up to the southern part of Scotland that was conquered and inhabited by Viking invaders. In 871 CE, a Wessex army under King Aethelred (the West Saxon king) and his brother Alfred confronted the Danish Vikings at the Battle of Ashdown (in modern Berkshire). Unfortunately, after a series of losses, Wessex began paying annual Danegeld (tribute) to the Vikings. Aethelred died soon after, and Viking settlers swarmed into the northern parts of England while their raiders occupied London. The Vikings continued their expansion until 878 CE. That year, King Alfred the Great rallied men from Somerset and Wiltshire and decisively defeated the Danish Vikings. The Danes were too numerous to dislodge from their holdings, but it was clear that they would not be able to expand their territory while Alfred lived. King Alfred freed London from Danish occupation in 886. At this point, Alfred made a treaty with the Danes so that England was divided. The northeastern section between the Rivers Thames and Tees was officially declared to be Danish territory and later become known as the Danelaw (where the inhabitants followed Danish law from 890 onward). The influence of this period of Viking settlement is still visible in the North of England and the East Midlands, especially in toponyms or place-names. Towns with name-endings such as -by or -thorp are all places named by the Viking settlers.
Entertainment / Literature / Danegeld: The practice of paying extortion money to Vikings to make them go away, often associated in particular with the Anglo-Saxon king 'Aethelred Unraed.' His nickname means 'Aethelred the Unready,' or more MORE