Anglo-Saxon is the adjective given to the Germanic tribes that migrated to and conquered Britain in the 5th century. Later it took on the meaning of referring to England and the English people as a whole. The name comes from two of the tribes that made this migration.

The Angles are thought to be from an area of Holstein, in what is now northern Germany, known as the Angul, so-called because of its shape. The word comes from a common Germanic root meaning a hook or other bent object. The Angles bequeathed their name to England and the English language.

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