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This 1913 book was considered ground-breaking on first publication. While there are few documentary sources for Anglo-Saxon history, Major uses his intimate knowledge of the geography of the West County to re-interpret the surviving records. By examining physical and archaeological evidence, he sheds new light on the foundation and development of the kingdom of Wessex. He also uses modern boundaries, place names and local traditions, previously overlooked by scholars, to understand how Wessex history was shaped. He shows how the kingdom was first established, and its boundaries extended through warfare with its neighbours, between the late fifth to eighth centuries. Thereafter, famously led by Alfred the Great, Wessex fought and survived Viking invasions; but eventually fell to the Normans in 1066. Although much new archaeological evidence has been uncovered since the book was written, it continues to demonstrate the significance of landscape and folklore study to history.