Archaeology in Alfred the Great (1969) and The Last Kingdom (2015–)
AffiliationUniversity of Chester
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AbstractAlfred the Great (1969) was the first, and remains the only, feature-length film portraying the West Saxon king and his conflicts with the Danes. Forty-seven years later, Bernard Cornwell’s novels have been adapted for television as The Last Kingdom (2015–). Despite being fictional adaptions of historical events, and despite the considerable separation in time between their production, both Alfred the Great and The Last Kingdom consciously aspired to portray the Saxons and Vikings with a high degree of historical accuracy. Taking an archaeological perspective – focusing on the material cultures represented and their archaeological inspirations – this chapter asks which is more effective in representing late 9th-century Britain and what are the implications of this comparison?
CitationNicholls, V. & Williams, H. (2020). Archaeology in Alfred the Great (1969) and The Last Kingdom (2015–). In Williams, H. & Clarke, P. (Ed.). Digging into the Dark Ages: Early Medieval Public Archaeologies. Oxford: Archaeopress.
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