Old Englishwikipedia
Old English (Ænglisc, Anglisc, Englisc, ), or Anglo-Saxon, is the earliest historical form of the English language, spoken in England and southern and eastern Scotland in the early Middle Ages.
Old EnglishAnglo-SaxonSaxonAnglo SaxonOldOEEnglishAnglianAnglo-Saxon languageAnglic

Old English literature

Old EnglishOld English poemAnglo-Saxon
It was brought to Great Britain by Anglo-Saxon settlers probably in the mid-5th century, and the first Old English literary works date from the mid-7th century. The oldest surviving text of Old English literature is Cædmon's Hymn, composed between 658 and 680.
Old English literature or Anglo-Saxon literature, encompasses literature written in Old English, in Anglo-Saxon England from the 7th century to the decades after the Norman Conquest of 1066.

England

EnglishEnglandBritish
Old English (Ænglisc, Anglisc, Englisc, ), or Anglo-Saxon, is the earliest historical form of the English language, spoken in England and southern and eastern Scotland in the early Middle Ages.
The name "England" is derived from the Old English name Englaland, which means "land of the Angles".

English language

EnglishEnglish-languageen
Old English (Ænglisc, Anglisc, Englisc, ), or Anglo-Saxon, is the earliest historical form of the English language, spoken in England and southern and eastern Scotland in the early Middle Ages.
The earliest forms of English, a set of Anglo-Frisian dialects brought to Great Britain by Anglo-Saxon settlers in the 5th century, are called Old English.

Middle English

Middle EnglishMiddleEnglish
This is regarded as marking the end of the Old English era, as during this period the English language was heavily influenced by Anglo-Norman, developing into a phase known now as Middle English.
Middle English (ME) is a period when the English language, spoken after the Norman Conquest (1066) until the late 15th century, underwent distinct variations and developments following the Old English period.

Anglo-Saxons

Anglo-SaxonSaxonSaxons
As the Anglo-Saxons became dominant in England, their language replaced the languages of Roman Britain: Common Brittonic, a Celtic language, and Latin, brought to Britain by Roman invasion.
In scholarly use, it is more commonly called Old English.

Anglo-Saxon settlement of Britain

SaxonAnglo-Saxon settlementAnglo-Saxon
It was brought to Great Britain by Anglo-Saxon settlers probably in the mid-5th century, and the first Old English literary works date from the mid-7th century.
Moreover, there is little clear evidence for the influence of British Celtic or British Latin on Old English.

Modern English

modern EnglishEnglishModern
It was West Saxon that formed the basis for the literary standard of the later Old English period, although the dominant forms of Middle and Modern English would develop mainly from Mercian.
Modern English (sometimes New English or NE as opposed to Middle English and Old English) is the form of the English language spoken since the Great Vowel Shift in England, which began in the late 14th century and was completed in roughly 1550.

List of English words of Anglo-Saxon origin

derived from
Englisc, which the term English is derived from, means 'pertaining to the Angles'.
Below is the list of English words of native origin, in other words, words inherited directly from the Anglo-Saxon, or Old English, stage of the language.

Celtic language decline in England

displacement of the languages of Brittonic descentreplacedswitching from speaking British
As the Anglo-Saxons became dominant in England, their language replaced the languages of Roman Britain: Common Brittonic, a Celtic language, and Latin, brought to Britain by Roman invasion.
The fundamental reason for the death of these languages in early medieval England was the arrival in Britain of immigrants who spoke the Germanic language now known as Old English, particularly around the fifth century CE. Gradually, Celtic-speakers switched to speaking this English language until Celtic languages were no longer extensively spoken in what became England.

North Sea Germanic

IngvaeonicNorth Sea GermanicIngvaeonic language
Old English developed from a set of Anglo-Frisian or Ingvaeonic dialects originally spoken by Germanic tribes traditionally known as the Angles, Saxons and Jutes.
North Sea Germanic, also known as Ingvaeonic, is a postulated grouping of the northern West Germanic languages, consisting of Old Frisian, Old English and Old Saxon and their descendants.

West Saxon dialect

West SaxonWest Saxon dialectSaxon
Old English had four main dialects, associated with particular Anglo-Saxon kingdoms: Mercian, Northumbrian, Kentish and West Saxon. With the unification of the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms (outside the Danelaw) by Alfred the Great in the later 9th century, the language of government and literature became standardised around the West Saxon dialect (Early West Saxon).
West Saxon was one of four distinct dialects of Old English.

Kentish dialect (Old English)

KentishOld KentishKentish dialect
Old English had four main dialects, associated with particular Anglo-Saxon kingdoms: Mercian, Northumbrian, Kentish and West Saxon.
Kentish was a southern dialect of Old English spoken in the Anglo-Saxon kingdom of Kent.

Old English grammar

Old Englishcase system of Old Englishmorphology of Old English
Old English grammar is quite similar to that of modern German: nouns, adjectives, pronouns and verbs have many inflectional endings and forms, and word order is much freer.
As an old Germanic language, Old English has a morphological system that is similar to that of the hypothetical Proto-Germanic reconstruction, retaining many of the inflections thought to have been common in Proto-Indo-European and also including characteristically Germanic constructions such as the umlaut.

Mercian dialect

MercianMercian dialectAnglian features
Old English had four main dialects, associated with particular Anglo-Saxon kingdoms: Mercian, Northumbrian, Kentish and West Saxon.
Together with Northumbrian, it was one of the two Anglian dialects.

Old English Latin alphabet

version of the Latin alphabetOld EnglishOld English alphabet
The oldest Old English inscriptions were written using a runic system, but from about the 9th century this was replaced by a version of the Latin alphabet.
The Old English Latin alphabet—though it had no standard orthography—generally consisted of 24 letters, and was used for writing Old English from the 9th to the 12th centuries.

Northumbrian dialect (Old English)

NorthumbrianNorthumbrian Old EnglishNorthumbrian English
Old English had four main dialects, associated with particular Anglo-Saxon kingdoms: Mercian, Northumbrian, Kentish and West Saxon.
Northumbrian was a dialect of Old English spoken in the Anglian Kingdom of Northumbria.

Scotland

ScottishScotlandScots
Old English (Ænglisc, Anglisc, Englisc, ), or Anglo-Saxon, is the earliest historical form of the English language, spoken in England and southern and eastern Scotland in the early Middle Ages. Other parts of the island – Wales and most of Scotland – continued to use Celtic languages, except in the areas of Scandinavian settlements where Old Norse was spoken.
By the 12th century, the kings of Alba had added to their territories the English-speaking land in the south-east and attained overlordship of Gaelic-speaking Galloway and Norse-speaking Caithness; by the end of the 13th century, the kingdom had assumed approximately its modern borders.

Great Britain

BritishBritainGreat Britain
It was brought to Great Britain by Anglo-Saxon settlers probably in the mid-5th century, and the first Old English literary works date from the mid-7th century.
The French form replaced the Old English Breoton, Breoten, Bryten, Breten (also Breoton-lond, Breten-lond).

Anglo-Saxon runes

Anglo-Saxon futhorcfuthorcrunic
The oldest Old English inscriptions were written using a runic system, but from about the 9th century this was replaced by a version of the Latin alphabet.
They were likely used from the 5th century onward, recording Old English and Old Frisian.

Cædmon's Hymn

The oldest surviving text of Old English literature is Cædmon's Hymn, composed between 658 and 680.
Cædmon's "Hymn" is a short Old English poem originally composed by Cædmon, an illiterate cow-herder who was able to sing in honour of God the Creator, using words that he had never heard before.

Old Saxon

SaxonOld SaxonSaxon language
Old English is one of the West Germanic languages, and its closest relatives are Old Frisian and Old Saxon.
It partially shares Anglo-Frisian's (Old Frisian, Old English) Ingvaeonic nasal spirant law which sets it apart from Low Franconian and Irminonic languages, such as Dutch, Luxembourgish and German.

Wales

WelshSouth WalesWelshman
Other parts of the island – Wales and most of Scotland – continued to use Celtic languages, except in the areas of Scandinavian settlements where Old Norse was spoken.
The Old English-speaking Anglo-Saxons came to use the term Wælisc when referring to the Britons in particular, and Wēalas when referring to their lands.

Ælfric of Eynsham

Ælfric of EynshamÆlfricAelfric
A later literary standard, dating from the later 10th century, arose under the influence of Bishop Æthelwold of Winchester, and was followed by such writers as the prolific Ælfric of Eynsham ("the Grammarian").
Ælfric of Eynsham (Ælfrīc; Alfricus, Elphricus; ) was an English abbot, as well as a consummate, prolific writer in Old English of hagiography, homilies, biblical commentaries, and other genres.

Alfred the Great

King AlfredAlfredAlfred the Great
With the unification of the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms (outside the Danelaw) by Alfred the Great in the later 9th century, the language of government and literature became standardised around the West Saxon dialect (Early West Saxon).
Alfred had a reputation as a learned and merciful man of a gracious and level-headed nature who encouraged education, proposing that primary education be conducted in English rather than Latin, and improved his kingdom's legal system, military structure, and his people's quality of life.

Mercia

Kingdom of MerciaMerciaMercian
Of these, Northumbria south of the Tyne, and most of Mercia, were overrun by the Vikings during the 9th century.
The name is a Latinisation of the Old English Mierce or Myrce, meaning "border people" (see March).