Do you read about the history of the places you visit? I do, always, with passion, lost and fascinated in old history class memories being updated and visually made alive.
Sometimes perplexed, I rediscover broad historical phenomenons that I associated with other geographies and am puzzled to encounter right here: like Napoleon in Egypt, or the Silk Road whilst visiting Crimea.
Today, in lovely and sunny Norwich, I refreshed my memory about:
- the Anglo-Saxon heritage of England: a culture and language formed by the migration of Germanic tribes after the fall of the Roman Empire, from the 5th century. The city of Norwich was founded by the Anglo-Saxons, close to an old Roman settlement fallen into decay.
- the Viking invasion of England: a continuous flow of raids into England around 800-1100. The Vikings made Norwich a thriving centre for trade, and Norwich grew into one of England’s biggest and most important cities.
- the Norman conquest acquired after William the Conqueror‘s victory at the Battle of Hastings in 1066. In Norwich, the Normans founded a castle and built an enormous cathedral that now form Norwich’s key highlights.
- the Dutch revolt that burst in 1566 in modern-day Benelux forced many Flemish protestants to flee Catholic persecution and many found refuge in Norwich. The legend says that many had pet canaries, originally brought to Flanders by Spanish sailors; and this is how Norwich’s mascot became the canary.
And now, time to go and stroll back into the city to admire it in light of these fresh insights!