View Full Version : The Angelic Angles

Monday, September 8th, 2003, 01:49 AM
The 'Venerable' Bede, an Angle by stock, (before 735) and evidently also Pope Gregory the Great (before 597) considered the Angles specifically (and perhaps also the Saxons and Jutes generally) to be 'angelic-like' by external physical appearance. Refer to the below excerpts from Bede's 'History-Ecclesiastical-Folk-English:' [my comments are underlined and in bold and in brackets.]

From: Bede's Ecclesiastical History of England
By A. M. Sellar
(based on the earlier Giles {1842} & Stevens translations which were based on Plummer's Latin version)
Book II, Chapter 1
Nor must we pass by in silence the story of the blessed Gregory, handed down to us by the tradition of our ancestors, which explains his earnest care for the salvation of our nation. It is said that one day, when some merchants had lately arrived at Rome, many things were exposed for sale in the market place, and much people resorted thither to buy: Gregory himself went with the rest, and saw among other wares some boys put up for sale, of fair complexion [candidi corporis], with pleasing countenances [venusti vultus], and very beautiful hair [capillorum quoque forma egregia]. When he beheld them, he asked, it is said, from what region or country they were brought? and was told, from the island of Britain, and that the inhabitants were like that in appearance [Brittania insula, cuius incolae talis essent aspectus]. He again inquired whether those islanders were Christians, or still involved in the errors of paganism, and was informed that they were pagans. Then fetching a deep sigh from the bottom of his heart, "Alas! what pity," said he, "that the author of darkness should own men of such fair countenances [lucidi vultus homines]; and that with such grace of outward form [gratia frontispicii], their minds should be void of inward grace. He therefore again asked, what was the name of that nation? and was answered, that they were called Angles [Angli]. "Right," said he, "for they have an angelic face, and it is meet that such should be co-heirs with the Angels in heaven [At ille: "Bene," inquit; "nam et angelicam habent faciem, et tales angelorum in caelis decet esse coheredes.]. What is the name of the province from which they are brought?" It was replied, that the natives of that province were called Deiri. (Note: Southern Northumbria ) "Truly are they Deira," said he, "saved from wrath, and called to the mercy of Christ [At ille: "Bene," inquit, "Deiri; de ira eruti, et ad misericordiam Christi vocati]. How is the king of that called?" They told him his name was Aelli;' and he, playing upon the name, said, "Allelujah, the praise of God the Creator must be sung in those parts."
Baeda's (Bede's) Historia Ecclesiastica Gentis Anglorum in the original Mediaeval Latin
As Listed By: Plummer
Nec silentio praetereunda opinio, quae be beato Gregorio traditione maiorum ad nos usque perlata est; qua videlicet ex causa admonitus tam sedulam erga salutem nostrae gentis curam gesserit. Dicunt quia die quadam cum, advenientibus nuper mercatoribus, multa venalia in forum fuissent conlata, multi ad emendum confluxissent, et ipsum Gregorium inter alios advenisse, ac vidisse inter alia pueros venales positos candidi corporis [bright/white/pale bodies], ac venusti vultus [beautiful faces], capillorum [hair] quoque forma [forms] egregia [distinguished]. Quos cum aspiceret, interrogavit, ut aiunt, de qua regione vel terra essent adlati. Dictumque est quia de Brittania insula, cuius incolae talis essent aspectus. Rursus interrogavit utrum idem insulani Christiani, an paganis adhuc erroribus essent inplicati. Dictum est quod essent pagani. At ille, intimo ex corde longa trahens suspiria; "Heu, pro dolor!" inquit, "quod tam lucidi vultus homines [bright/light faces of men] tenebrarum auctor possidet, tantaque gratia frontispicii [graceful looking-faces] mentem ab interna gratia vacuam gestat!" Rursus ergo interrogavit quod esset vocabulum gentis illius. Responsum est, quod Angli [Angles] vocarentur. At ille: "Bene," inquit; "nam et angelicam [angelic] habent faciem [face], et tales angelorum [angels] in caelis decet esse coheredes. Quod habet nomen ipsa provincia, de qua isti sunt adlati?" Responsum est, quod Deiri [tribal branch of the Angles] vocarentur idem provinciales. At ille: "Bene," inquit, "Deiri; de ira eruti, et ad misericordiam Christi vocati. Rex provinciae illius quomodo appellatur?" Responsum est quod Aelli [ ∆lli was not an Angle but was one of the original invading West Saxon chieftains, he was the [i]ealdormann of his particular branch of the Saxons] diceretur. At ille adludens ad nomen ait: "Alleluia, laudem Dei Creatoris illis in partibus oportet cantari."
My conclusions based on this excerpt are thus:

The Angles, Saxons, and Jutes of the "Anglo-Saxon" period of English history were all of bright/white/pale skin--this kind of skin is generally accompanied by the various forms of 'blonde' hair that exist. Also, this kind of skin tone is universally ruddy and with this ruddiness of skin comes the accompanying higher possiblities rufosity (a variety of 'blonde,' BTW) of hair color. IMO, all of these tribes were to a certain significant %: 'red' haired.

Both Bede (a priest) and Gregory (the Bishop of Rome) were of course knowledgable of the Christian Scriptures. Both knew that the Bible speaks of 'angels' as 'beings of light'--as BRIGHT as LIGHTNING! So, it was easy for them to make the connection of the 'bright' Anglo-Saxons of their day to the 'searingly BRIGHT!' concept of Biblical angels.

Most folks of the modern English ethnicity, IMO, still have the same bright/'white'/pale skin as their forefathers/foremothers had. Little seems to have changed in this regard since the days of Bede and Gregory. I can't say for sure, but I believe the BRIGHTNESS of 'angels' remains the same, in spite of the passage of ca. 1,400 years of time. ;-)

Monday, September 8th, 2003, 11:49 AM
Ah, yeah, I remember that that story is mentioned in the race books of Woltmann or GŁnther.

Thursday, September 11th, 2003, 04:18 AM
Ah, yeah, I remember that that story is mentioned in the race books of Woltmann or GŁnther.

Ja, Thorburnulf, now that you mention it I seem to have recalled coming across a mentioning of this piece by GŁnther too. I need to do a little digging on this. I'm completely unfamiliar with Woltmann.

Thursday, September 11th, 2003, 03:35 PM
Ludwig Woltmann (1871-1907) wrote among others Die Germanen und die Renaissance in Italien (The Germanics and the Renaissance in Italy), analysing the Nordic-Germanic element in Italy since the VŲlkerwanderung.

I think I read the Angelic Angles episode several times in racialist works, but I can't remember exactly where. With regard to GŁnther it was probably in his book about the origins of the Germanics or in the "Racial Elements of European History". But I havn't checked it out already.

Schultze-Naumburg wrote a book on "Nordic Beauty". Perhaps I have read in there, too.

Thursday, September 11th, 2003, 06:06 PM
Thanks Suomut2_13!

I've come across this passage myself before....I think in Bede's book itself. I find it an interesting piece from a racial perspective but not so from a spiritual one as conversion was not far behind!


Saturday, September 13th, 2003, 03:40 AM
THANKS! Thorburnulf & Dalonord for your replies...I appreciate them VERY MUCH! :)

I made a mistake in this thread, though, gentlemen (and folks), that I just found out about today. I originally stated in the brackets below:

Responsum est quod Aelli [ ∆lli was not an Angle but was one of the original invading West Saxon chieftains, he was the ealdormann of his particular branch of the Saxons] diceretur.

The ∆lli that Bede spoke of in this passage was actually (evidently) the Angle king of Northumbria, King ∆lle(-i) who took control of the kingdom following the death of it's former King Ida and he ruled from the period ca. 560-90. So, the Angle boys that stood before Gregory the Great as slaves surely were at an earlier point in their lives under the rule of this Angle King ∆lli.

I've learned a lesson: think TWICE before questioning the words of the VENERABLE Bede!!!! lol ;)