Completed in 731, Bede's Historia Ecclesiastica (hereafter HE) is perhaps the magnum opus of its period for both its scope and influence. Not only does the HE provide far and away the most important account of seventh-century Britain—the century in which several English kingdoms converted to Christianity—but it has also shaped how we understand early England. Through his account of the Christian conversion and events of English history from the Roman invasion of Britain in 60 BCE to the ascension of Ceolwulf as King of the Northumbrians in 729 and the death of Archbishop Berhtwold in 731, Bede distinguished himself as the preeminent author in early eighth-century Britain and earned praise on the continent as well. It may be needless to say that Bede constructed and shaped his text with the sources available to him and by the Roman leanings of his home monastery, where he lived from age...

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