Historical story

A short historical journey to England

Last updated:2022-07-25

England is the largest and most populous part of Great Britain, Great Britain and Northern Ireland. It is located northwest of mainland Europe and has the most people. It is home to more than 82 per cent of people living in the UK. People often think that England is the same as Britain or the island of Great Britain, which consists of England, Wales and Scotland. But England is no longer an official administrative or political entity. Nor is it Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland, which have different levels of control over their affairs.

England became a single country in the tenth century, and the name comes from the Angles, a Germanic tribe that lived there in the fifth and sixth centuries. The country was the center of the British Empire, and the Industrial Revolution began there. However, the Kingdom of England was its own country until May 1, 1707, when the Union Acts brought it together with the Kingdom of Scotland to form the Kingdom of Great Britain.

Prehistoric Period

Prehistory is the time before the maintenance of records occurred on paper. We know the least about this time in human history, but it was also the longest. About 900,000 43 years ago, the first people we know came to these lands. Until the Romans arrived in XNUMX AD, this period was called prehistory. These countries underwent significant changes in climate, society, government, technology and the country itself.

The oldest human remains in England so far belong to a six-foot-tall Homo heidelbergensis man who lived about 500,000 300,000 years ago. So, between 35,000 13,000 and XNUMX XNUMX years ago, Neanderthals, shorter and more powerful than modern humans, came to Britain. So, about XNUMX XNUMX years ago, people from the ice age made the first cave art in England at Creswell Crags in Derbyshire.

People started living there again as soon as the climate improved at the end of the last ice age. At this time, people in Britain were still hunters and gatherers who used plants and animals from nature. Although most of these people were probably nomads, buildings recently found show that some of them had come to life. Then, around 6500 BCE, rising sea levels flooded the land bridge that connected Britain to Europe. This flood turned Britain into an island.

Farming came to Britain around 4000 BC, and this invention may have been a significant change in its history. People must have taken a boat from Europe to get to the island and bring these skills. People grew legumes, barley and wheat, but they also used food and resources from nature. And instead of staying in one place, they moved around within their territories. In these areas, the focus was on significant public buildings. Then, during the middle and late Neolithic period, new types of monuments began to appear.

Bronze Age in England (2300–800 BC)

Around 2300 BC, metal weapons, jewelry and a new type of pottery called Beaker came to Britain. The burial of people took place in individual graves with these things, and they also had a cover of round graves. Copper was in use first, but in 2200 BC. made Britain bronze, a mixture of copper and tin. In the early Bronze Age, some people were buried in rich tombs inside round tombs, along with strange goods brought from far away.

Iron Age in England (800 BC-50 AD)

People built more complicated hill castles in the early and middle Iron Age. They also began using iron to make weapons and tools. Ritual offerings of military equipment and fine metalwork suggest that a warrior aristocracy ruled, and these tribal territories began to form.

The first coins were made at the end of the Iron Age, and tribal centers began to form around them. During this time, the Roman world also learned about Britain. Greeks and Romans were the first to write down what life was like on the island. Julius Caesar, who invaded Britain in 55-54 BCE, took the most famous notes. People at that time say that it was chariot warfare and religious leaders called druids who worshiped in oak groves and sacrificed. Then, almost a hundred years after Caesar's attack, Emperor Claudius ordered a full-scale invasion. But this time the Romans planned to stay.

Roman rule in England (43-410 AD)

When Julius Caesar came to Britain in 55-54 BCE, it was an unknown and mysterious land across the sea. Although Caesar defeated the British, he soon made peace with his enemies and returned to Gaul.

After that, the kingdoms of Great Britain were kept quiet with gifts and diplomacy for almost a hundred years. But when anti-Roman rulers took over, Emperor Claudius began a full-scale invasion in 43 AD. This time, the Romans quickly succeeded in war. But as they slowly moved through the south of England and Wales, Boudicca, the queen of the Iceni people of East Anglia, rose in 60 AD. because of their cruel ways of taking over. The uprising was put down, but not before they burned the Camulodunum (now Colchester), Verulamium (now St. Albans) and Londinium (now London) to the ground.

Most people in the UK lived on rural farms, and their lives did not change much. But over time, they continued to run into villas, cities and markets. Here they could exchange their goods for things made by the Romans and see how the Romans dressed and acted. So along with the towns, which got stone walls at this time, there were several small markets towns, villages and villas in the 3rd century.

But at the end of the 4th century there was a lot of unrest. During this period there was also a significant invasion called the Barbarian Conspiracy of 367 CE. In the 370s, there were no new buildings. Generals based in Britain repeatedly tried to take over the empire. The last, by Constantine III in 407 AD, drained the diocese of troops. In 410 AD the Romans were no longer in charge of Britain, and the people were left to take care of themselves.

Early medieval England (410–1066 AD)

The period between the end of Roman rule and the Norman conquest, which occurred about 650 years later, were some of the most critical times in English history. Unfortunately, this long time is also one of the most difficult to understand, so it has been called "the Dark Ages" for a long time. But during these centuries, England became a kingdom and a new "English" identity and language with it.

Both the 5th and 6th centuries are shrouded in mystery. There are few records; they are difficult to understand or written after the events they describe. One thing is for sure:the Romans did not just get up and leave Britain. After 350 years of Roman rule, which is between now and Charles II, everyone in Britain was in a way Roman.

To begin with, Irish raiders from the west and pickets from the north were Britain's greatest enemies. Later, people from all over the North Sea - the Angles, the Saxons and the Jews - came to live there. We do not know how they came to England or settled there, but in 500 AD. had Germanic speakers moved deep into Britain.


As the Roman Empire fell apart in the 5th century and the need to train more soldiers to protect Rome arose, the Romans left Britain one by one. After the Romans left, the Celtic tribes began to fight again, and one of the local chiefs had the not so good idea of ​​asking some Germanic tribes from the north of present-day Germany and southern Denmark for help. These people came in the 5th and 6th centuries. They were anglers, Saxons and Jews.

But things did not go as the Celts thought they would. After the battle, the Germanic tribes did not return home. Instead, they felt they were strong enough to take over the whole country, which they did. They pushed all the Celtic tribes back to Wales and Cornwall and started their kingdoms in Kent (Jutland), Wessex, Sussex and Essex (Saxons), as well as East Anglia, Mercia and Northumbria further north (the Angles). The Anglo-Saxon heptarchy later meant the seven kingdoms that ruled all of England from about 500 to 850 AD


The Norse invaded Europe in the second half of the 9th century. Then, in 1000 AD, they were the first Europeans to set foot in America. After that, the Danes created problems in Western Europe to North Africa.

The Danes took over North East England, from Northumberland to East Anglia, and created a new empire called Danelaw. In the year 911, another group of Danes was able to take Paris and get land from the King of France. The inhabitants of this area were called Normans, and it became the Duchy of Normandy. The word "Norman" comes from "North Men", which is another word for "Viking".

Medieval England (1066–1485 AD)

In 1066, when Duke William of Normandy defeated King Harold at the Battle of Hastings, a new era began. The Norman defeat of the Saxon kingdom of England changed everything about the country they took over, from its organization and government to its language, customs and perhaps most obviously its buildings.


After the Normans moved into the country they had just taken over, they adopted the French feudal system and made French the official language. In the 10th century, the Danes tried to take over England, but the kings of Wessex fought back and defeated them. But the strong Knud the Great (995–1035 AD), who was king of the newly united Denmark and Norway and overlord of Schleswig and Pomerania, led two more invasions of England in 1013 and 1015. Finally, he defeated the Anglo-Saxon King Edmund II in 1016 and became King of England.

Edward the Confessor took over from Knud's two sons in 1004. He chose William, Duke of Normandy, as his successor, but the powerful Earl of Wessex, Harold Godwinson, crowned himself king when William died. In 1066, William refused to accept Harold as king and sent 12,000 XNUMX soldiers to England. The story goes that an arrow to the eye killed King Harold at the Battle of Hastings, and William the Conqueror became King William I of England. His children and grandchildren have ruled England ever since.

William I (1027–1087 AD) commissioned the Domesday Book, a survey of all the land in the land, and gave land to his vassals. Under Williams' rule, many of the country's medieval castles were built (eg Dover, Arundel, Windsor, Warwick, Kenilworth, Lincoln). The Norman rulers kept their land in France and even cultivated it to cover most of western France. England used French as its official language until 1362, when France's Hundred Years' War began. Nevertheless, most spoke English, a mixture of Anglo-Saxon and Norse. Over time, French and Latin, which were used by the clergy, mixed with English to create modern English.

Tudors (1485–1603 AD)

The turbulent wars over the roses ended when Henry VII defeated Richard III at the Battle of Bosworth. This era started the Tudor dynasty, which may have been the most famous royal family in English history. Under the rule of three generations of Tudor kings and queens, the country underwent many significant changes. First, Henry VIII introduced the new state religion, and as the state became more confident, a unique English culture grew with it.

Stuartene (1603–1714 AD)

James I, who was also James VI of Scotland, took over from Elizabeth I. This period was the beginning of the Stuart era. She died in 1603 without having children. England and Scotland fought war for a long time before James took the throne. During the Stuart era, there were many religious and political struggles, which caused the monarchy to lose power and give it to parliament. In the meantime, new ideas and discoveries changed science, architecture, and daily life.

Georgians (1714–1837 AD)

Queen Anne died childless in 1714, so the German Hanoverians happened to take her place. This period marked the beginning of the Georgian era, named after the first four Hanovarian kings, whose names were all George. During this time, Britain became a global power and the center of an expanding empire. As things changed rapidly after the 1770s, Britain became the first industrialized country.

Victorians (1837–1901 AD)

Queen Victoria was only 18 years old when she took the throne. She was to be Queen of England for more than 60 years. Under this long rule, the country gained power and wealth that had never been there before. Britain's influence spread throughout the world because it had an empire and a stable government and made great strides in transport and communications. We still use a lot of the intellectual and cultural achievements of this time.

The conclusion

At the end of the Victorian era in 1901 AD. it was difficult to imagine what Britain would be like in 2000. However, the first two and second world wars of the 1920s caused many significant changes in society, including extensive improvements in health and education. In addition, the car changed both city and country, and Britain was no longer responsible for a third of the world.