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Lundenwīc: the Middle Saxon Trading Emporium

Previous page: Early Anglo-Saxon London 

Excavation in the City of London in the 1970s and 1980s had failed to find virtually any evidence of occupation in the period from 410 AD to the 10th century despite apparently unambiguous historical evidence of London's existence at least from 604 AD onwards. However, the Department of Greater London Archaeology (DGLA) had discovered so-called Saxon farms in the area of Fleet Street, Covent Garden, and Westminster.

In the mid 1980s Alan Vince and Martin Biddle independently came up with the theory that London had been re-established not in the City but a couple of miles to the west, centred on the area called Aldwych. This Middle Saxon settlement was known as Lundenwic. Lundenwic was subjected to increasing Viking attack in the 9th century and the population may have been forced to scatter


In about 886 AD Alfred the Great moved the Londoners back into the City of London and the shelter of the Roman defensive walls, which still stood. The Late Saxon reoccupation of the Roman town site was known as Lundenburgh.

See also:
AD 700 - Saxon London Discovered; Saxon London in a tale of two cities; The early years of Lundenwic

 Next page: London and the Vikings