The Last Kingdom By Bernard Cornwell's The Last Kingdom

1226 Words5 Pages
In the eight hundreds, the Anglo Saxons biggest priority was not fighting. They were more content with their ordinary lifestyle and were not looking for trouble. As portrayed by Bernard Cornwell in the Last Kingdom, the Anglo Saxons had multiple cultural practices and customs. Of the characters, Alfred is the strongest embodiment of the Anglo Saxon’s motivations behind their societal actions and behaviors. Alfred's intelligence, religious practices, and power, are results of the cultural values of the Anglo Saxons, while his manipulative task emphasizes the importance of maintaining a legacy. From the instant that Alfred is introduced into The Last Kingdom it is immediately evident that religion plays a crucial role in his cultural identity. His decisions throughout the novel are heavily influenced by the Christian religion, including its beliefs, customs, restrictions and punishments. “God, as he went on, was guiding his choice, but now he must talk with me [Uhtred] to see whether God’s advice chimed with his own intuition.” (257 Cornwell) While Alfred had his motivations and ideas, he believed God made the ultimate decision in every situation. He even showed his religion in claiming his title as king, “but Alfred, to his dying day, insisted that the Pope had conferred the succession on him, and so justified his usurpation of the thrown.” (91 Cornwell). Alfred wasn’t ashamed of his God and made an effort to practice Christianity even during negotiations and war, “Alfred

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