# Invasions of Great Britain

Name the five groups of people who successfully invaded and settled Great Britain.
Quiz by Quizmaster
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Last updated: April 1, 2017
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 First submitted January 24, 2017 Times taken 52,772 Average score 80.0% Rating 4.41
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 When Invaders 500s BC Celts 55 BC–60s AD Romans 400s–600s Germanic Tribes 800s–1000s Vikings 1066 Normans
+48
Level ∞
Jan 24, 2017
Despite these invasions, eighty percent of the DNA of most Britons has been passed down from the few thousand hunter gatherers who lived in the region several thousand years ago.

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2005/07/0719_050719_britishgene.html

+5
Level 62
Jan 24, 2017
Fascinating..
+2
Level 31
Jun 6, 2020
I just got vikings and romans
+2
Level 20
Jun 6, 2020
same
+7
Level 74
Jan 25, 2017
Does that mean the 80% of the 0.01 percent, not all humans have in common? Would be shocked, if Britons actually where farther distinct from us than most monkies.

http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v437/n7055/full/nature04072.html

+17
Level 82
Sep 5, 2019
no that's not how it works. If I got 100% of my DNA from my mom and dad, that doesn't mean that my mom and dad are a different species from other humans.
+9
Level 74
Jun 6, 2020
I'm a bit confused by your answer. If your mother and father are human beings, they share 99.5% of their DNA with every other human being, as do you. If this is not the case, if you only share 80% of you DNA with humans, you are probably not a Homo Sapiens.

As I assume, that Brits are Humans, they share 99.5% of their DNA with me, a Non-Brit Homo Sapiens.

+2
Level 69
Jun 6, 2020
That very small amount (.1-.5% genetic difference between individuals) still means several million genetic differences; as such it is certainly very reasonable to compare how many of those millions of differences are shared between various individuals or groups, even if the overall genomes are largely the same
+8
Level 79
Jun 7, 2020
'Monkies'??
+1
Level 78
Jan 4, 2024
For pity's sake, JackintheBox, find something better to do. Your pettiness is vexing.
+1
Level 61
Mar 8, 2024
I agree with JItB but this made me laugh
+1
Level 74
Jun 7, 2020
DarkJaguar, I do not despute this, I am just wondering how Quizmasters factoid is fitting into this.

Jack: Humans share ~96% of their DNA with chimps and ~93% with monkeys.

+4
Level 65
Jun 7, 2020
Some basics: DNA forms a readable code made up from repeating chemical units, like letters in the alphabet. Your complete DNA code is called your genome and contains 3000 million ‘letters’, which contain the instructions that the cells in your body ‘read’ to make you the way you are.

The genes are the recipes in the recipe book. It is a small part of the code that contain a set of instructions that usually make one particular protein. We have 20,000 genes, but this only comprises 2% of our genome (total DNA).

Studies comparing animal and plant DNA to our own are done by comparing the DNA base pairs in genes that humans and chimps share. So in the genes that chimps and humans have in common are approximately 98%. But that is misleading because it omits a large sources of variation (like duplications and deletions) and doesn’t look at ‘non coding DNA’ - which does influence the way our genes are expressed (so is important in explaining our differences

+3
Level 65
Jun 7, 2020
Cont.

Human beings are basically identical if you use the metrics used with comparing to other species. So the genomic studies in humans look at minuscule detail compared to this, including things like SNPs - which are non coding markers used in things like 23 and me tests

All humans are ultimately related but we are all unique, with mixing and “de novo” alterations having at every generation. When the founding population is small, this happens a bit faster because the gene pool is smaller and the gene frequencies are different. This is called the founder effect https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IRTn0iNkAHI

If you want to know where the greatest diversity of humans is - it’s Africa, because its where we came from. There is more genetic and phenotypical differences within Africa than there is in the entire rest of the world put together.

+1
Level 65
Jun 7, 2020
The second part of my comment appears to be pending moderation
+2
Level 59
Jun 7, 2020
QRU I think that the 80% number came from 80% of their DNA is shared with this one subset of other humans in the past, the 'few thousand hunter-gatherers'. I may be misinterpreting this though
+1
Level 75
Jun 9, 2020
PO - my understanding is that you can't really put a number on how many genes there are in an organism's DNA code - a gene is just a contiguous section of DNA which, as a unit, has an affect on the development of the "host" organism. It doesn't have a set length - a gene could be 5 letters (nucleotide pairs?) long, or it could be 50,000 long, and sections of DNA can be part of more than one gene (i.e. genes can overlap, effectively sharing sections of a chromosome) so it's really impossible in practical terms to quantify how many genes an organism has.

I think sometimes even non-contiguous sections of chromosomes combine forces to create a single protein to affect embryonic development, but I'm not entirely sure - thinking about it I can't see how separate sections of DNA would be able to work together to consistently create specific proteins.

You may well be able to tell me that I'm wrong about all of the above though...

+1
Level 74
Jul 23, 2020
Well, you are wrong imho to a certain extent.

Yes, genes work together, and the "code" is gibberish on itself, but that does not mean that it is indivisible.

This is like saying that the number of lines/blocks of code cannot be determined as the lines are part of a bigger code.

There are numerous genes identified which have even been transferred between species (there are light-emitting plants based on i think firefly genes). Some "simpler" genes have been identified, where the function is clear and isolated and where changes in code ("alleles") have a "clear" effect on those persons (e.g. missing enzymes, warrior gene, ...)

The main issue is the sheer amount of code, which is in fact very tolerant for "typo's". This makes it very hard to understand exactly what each and every part means (like we know it is code but we cannot read it yet). It does not mean there is no distinct division. There things like stop codons the mark the end of a certain protein strand.

interesting stuf

+1
Level 75
Apr 28, 2021
I think that what I was getting at was that "gene" in a physical sense has a somewhat vague definition in that it is really just a term for any section of genetic code which is being focused on for the current discussion - a gene doesn't have set parameters in the same was as, for example, a byte does in binary code.

And (I think) genes can overlap, combine, etc. So a "gene" might itself be a subsection of another, larger gene (and may have a completely unrelated function to that larger gene), or it might work in conjuction with a physically separate section of genetic code to act as a non-contiguous gene.

But yeah, we can identify sections of the genetic code which function to produce specific proteins so I guess they are quantifiable.

And again, this is just my understanding which is very limited - if you know about this stuff then I'm sure you're right. And yes, it is very interesting stuff

+1
Level 60
Aug 8, 2021
QRU, you make no sense to me.
+1
Level 49
May 25, 2018
Really interesting.
+8
Level 65
Jun 6, 2020
We are all related to everyone else and descended from a relatively small number of individuals. Family trees fold into each other over generations. If you imagine a traditional family tree of emperor Charlemagne to now (742 generations onwards) - with each one person descended from 2 unrelated people - you would have 137438953472 individuals on it (more people than have been alive over the course of human history in total). So that can’t be right.

So If you look at the population 1000 years ago in Europe, 80% of that population is related to *everyone* today in Europe. The other 20% died out. That’s what “I’m descended from an ancient king’ is so damn meaningless. If you are, then we literally all are.

From Adam Rutherford’s book, the story of everyone who has ever lived

+2
Level 20
Jun 6, 2020
wow
+2
Level 75
Jun 6, 2020
So apparently it isn't only rednecks whose family trees don't fork. :)
+2
Level 75
Jun 6, 2020
I've never heard of Adam Rutherford, but it helped me to remember the book Sarum, by Edward Rutherfurd, a historical novel spanning 10,000 years of English history.
+1
Level 65
Jun 7, 2020
I really would recommend the book. Really well written and researched science communication about a confusing but fascinating subject.

The favourite simple message about human population genetics is that “humans have always been horny and mobile”

+3
Level 60
Jun 6, 2020
The Norman invasion of 1066 for example was only less than 10k people in total. That is fascinating by itself, but it explains your fact.
+3
Level 73
Mar 30, 2023
Or maybe those few thousand hunter/gatherers shared ancestry with the central and northern European tribes that invaded later on...
+3
Level 78
Jan 25, 2017
I think Danish or Danes should be accepted for the Vikings.
+2
Level ∞
Jan 25, 2017
Danes would have worked
+2
Level 37
Mar 31, 2017
I kept trying norse
+16
Level 64
Oct 5, 2017
I tried Danish also, but coffee cake was better with my morning beverage.
+1
Level 20
Jun 6, 2020
yeah
+8
Level 39
Jan 30, 2017
the dutch..
+5
Level 65
Jan 31, 2017
The Dutch invasion of 1996 for the Euros?
+16
Level 61
Mar 31, 2017
No, 1688. The Glorious Revolution, actually a hostile takeover even if it was at the request of Middle Management.

I suppose there was the distinction that unlike the other five, there wasn't a huge amount of Dutch settlement in the country (although there was a little bit).

+4
Level 53
Mar 31, 2017
Usually known as a revolution rather than an invasion
+9
Level 63
Sep 5, 2019
Known as a revolution, but an invasion nonetheless.
+2
Level 58
Mar 31, 2017
Is it good or bad that I got 4/5 using pure guess work?
+4
Level 60
Aug 8, 2021
Probably good for you, but bad for the quiz being so easy
+2
Level 79
Mar 31, 2017
Should accept Anglo Saxons. Agree re William of Orange - but what about Henry IV, Edward IV, and Henry VII as well? All successful invasions mounted from outside England.
+2
Level 83
Apr 3, 2017
The title says Great Britain though
+2
Level 79
Sep 18, 2017
Yes, sloppy terminology on my part, but the point remains good - they were all successful invasions launched from outside the island of Great Britain.
+4
Level 58
Mar 31, 2017
Why don't you accept Anglo-Saxons? First thing I tried - that is how we refer to that period.
+2
Level 2
Mar 31, 2017
because Anglo is English... they were just Saxons when they invaded
+31
Level 47
Mar 31, 2017
No, the Angles were a Germanic tribe like the Saxons...
+15
Level 58
Oct 5, 2017
Dammit, my history degree on Anglo-Saxon History was completely wrong then. I'll have to write to my old university (plus every other university that covers the subject) then and tell them that GingeAlex says that Anglo-Saxon is wrong and that everything written on the subject over the last few centuries is now wrong.
+2
Level 81
Nov 10, 2020
Hey, he didn't just magically get to Level 3. The guy knows stuff. ;)
+2
Level 84
Mar 31, 2017
Second this. This is what they're most commonly referred to, as well.
+3
Level 61
Jun 6, 2020
Exactly. Angles, Saxons, Jutes, Frisians, yet fitheach here brasses it out and elaborately accuses everyone ELSE. The Angles gave their name to England, not vice versa.
+2
Level ∞
Apr 1, 2017
Anglo-Saxon will work now, in additional to the previously accepted Angle, Saxon, and Jute.
+12
Level 70
Sep 6, 2019
Jute AKA Legolanders who dotted the English countryside with sharp, small plastic bricks to temporarily immobilize and intensely anger the native populations. It would have been more successful too had the cost of these devilish landmines not been so shockingly expensive and their illustrated instructions somewhat unclear.
+11
Level 79
Mar 31, 2017
Not if you're Welsh. We refer to it as the arrival of the barbarians. We've civilised them a little over the last thousand years or so but there's still work to be done.
+2
Level 47
Mar 31, 2017
Maybe you should accept Norse for vikings, especially if you accept Saxons.
+2
Level 66
Mar 31, 2017
Please accept Norse or Norsemen for vikings.
+2
Level ∞
Apr 1, 2017
Okay
+1
Level 70
Mar 31, 2017
Agree. I tried Norse, then gave up.
+1
Level 34
Mar 31, 2017
Didn't the Visigoths or Francias have lower GB after the collapse of the Western Roman Empire?
+4
Level 58
Oct 5, 2017
No
+1
Level 41
Mar 31, 2017
Forgot the Celts
+3
Level 41
Mar 31, 2017
French should work for Normans.
+10
Level 60
Apr 1, 2017
It shouldn't, since the Normans weren't French.
+3
Level 70
Sep 5, 2019
That depends on how you define "French".
+4
Level 71
Jun 6, 2020
By 1066 the "Normans" were Frenchmen.

The Normans entered vassalage to the king of France at the Treaty of Saint-Clair-sur-Epte in 911. They settled in Normandy and assimilated into the local population.

By the time William, duke of Normandy, crossed the Channel 150 years later, he and his army were French and considered themselves to be so. Born in France, raised in France, speaking French and carrying French culture. In fact, it would take another 350 years before a king was crowned in England that would speak English (Henry IV in 1399).

Norman is a euphemism used by the English in order to avoid accepting the inescapable truth that their land was conquered by a Frenchmen 1000 years ago. Denial is a powerful thing.

+6
Level ∞
Jun 6, 2020
The crown of France didn't conquer England and didn't have anything to do with the invasion.
+1
Level 71
Jun 7, 2020
But the question doesn't say what country successfully invaded and settled Great Britain, does it? It says what groups of people. In 1066, a group of Frenchmen successfully invaded and settled Great Britain.........
+1
Level 57
Jun 10, 2020
Strikes me that saying the Normans were French is a bit like saying the Welsh are English - in fact it's even less true.

It helps to remember that, around this time, France was a relatively tiny country covering not much more than the modern Île-de-France (hence the name). They were vastly influential for their size, of course, but their vassals the Normans were simply Normans, they weren't French. A vassal state, after all, by definition is not part of the state it is vassal to.

+1
Level 12
Mar 30, 2023
JonOfKent you're seriously arguing that the kingdom of France didn't exist, or at least didn't have the frontiers you'll find in ANY encyclopedia or ANY history book. It's incredible how absurd people become just to deny the fact that the normans were french.

You're talking about the royal domain, because indeed the king of France in the middle ages never totally controlled his kingdom: he controlled the royal domain, and had powerful vassals controlling the rest of the kingdom. Some of those vassals were politically near independant at some point in history (like the Normans). Yet, being politically divided doesn't mean the kingdom didn't exist, don't be stupid.

Regarding 1066, just look at William's ancestry, the entire tree. Most original Norse settlers assimilated and mixed with the native population in Normandy from the start (that native population was always the majority), so by the time William invaded England, most Normans had an overwhelming French ancestry.

+2
Level 71
Jun 10, 2020
In 1066, France was not a tiny country centred around Ile-de-France. By the time Hugh Capet was crowned in 987, France was already a massive state ranging from the Pyrenees out to Flanders. Yes there were regional differences within the kingdom. But saying Normans in 1066 weren't French is more like saying that Texans aren't Americans, Bavarians aren't Germans and Quebecers aren't Canadians. They are (although some wish they weren't).
+4
Level 75
Sep 6, 2019
Normans were actually quite fascinating. They kept raiding France as vikings, then the French king gave them some land, hoping they would chill down a bit. Soon after the vikings suddenly assimilated and became these fancy-pants French-speaking Normans.
+3
Level ∞
Jun 6, 2020
They might have adopted the French language and religion but they were still among the fiercest warriors on the planet. England wasn't the only place they conquered. They also conquered Malta, parts of Italy, parts of Northern Africa, and attacked the Byzantine Empire. True assimilation would take hundreds of years.
+2
Level 20
Jun 6, 2020
whattt
+2
Level 81
Jun 6, 2020
So why don't you lump them in with the rest of the Viking invasions then?
+2
Level 71
Jun 7, 2020
That is simply not true. The Norman assimilation was quite fast. By the end of the reign of Richard I of Normandy in 996 (aka Richard the Fearless / Richard sans Peur), all descendants of Vikings became, according to Cambridge Medieval History (Volume 5, Chapter XV), 'not only Christians but in all essentials Frenchmen.' ....
+1
Level 12
Mar 30, 2023
The vikings in Normandy always remained a minority, most people in Normandy remained descendants of natives French. William the conquerors himself, had 90% of his ancestry from France.

Those are easily verifiable informations. They didn't just change culturally, they changed in every single way, including blood. So you can't consider the Normans as vikings at any point in history.

+11
Level 74
Mar 31, 2017
Can you accept "Europeans" and fill in all 5 in one fell swoop?
+1
Level 20
Jun 6, 2020
lel
+2
Level 28
Mar 31, 2017
5/5 in 14 seconds!!! Happy!
+1
Level 55
Oct 5, 2017
Not too difficult, finished in 15 seconds
+1
Level 84
Jun 18, 2020
-That's what he said
+1
Level 64
Oct 5, 2017
I guess for an "invasion," there have to be "boots on the ground" or the German air assault in WWII would count.
+3
Level 67
Oct 5, 2017
The Germans didn't "successfully" settle there.
+1
Level 20
Jun 6, 2020
yeah
+2
Level 60
Nov 4, 2022
unless you include POW camps
+2
Level 83
Dec 19, 2018
so... who were there before the Celts?!
+4
Level 85
May 29, 2019
The Beaker Folk I think.
+2
Level 79
Apr 18, 2020
And even they arrived to find people living there already.
+2
Level 83
Mar 30, 2023
It's debated to what extent 'Celtic' refers more to a people or a culture... While some call it an invasion, there are other suggestions that it was a migration, and yet other suggestions that there was little actual movement of people involved and the culture was simply brought to Britain through trade routes. Though I don't know how reliable the theories are. Anyway there were people in western Europe before the Celts, like the Etruscans and the Basques, and Britain was no exception, although it hadn't been continuously settled for quite as long due to the Ice Ages.
+1
Level 85
Mar 30, 2023
I don't think the Germanic tribes invaded either. At least not at first. They were invited to help defend the Britons from the Picts/Scots.
+3
Level 63
Apr 17, 2019
Call it a "glorious revolution" all you want, but the fact of the matter is that the Dutch invaded England with the help of an army and sympathizers in Parliament.
+3
Level 78
Sep 5, 2019
Do you get a point for Boris?
+3
Level 70
Sep 6, 2019
He doesn't fit the criteria unless you define "settled" as "destroyed" or "stirred up trouble in".
+6
Level 63
Sep 5, 2019
Another possible addition is the Scots, who originated in Ireland and invaded starting in late Roman times.
+1
Level 55
Jan 11, 2020
That was going to be my comment
+1
Level 54
Jun 7, 2020
There was also a lot of Irish/Scots invasion and settlement in West Wales and the South West of what's now England in the post Roman era.
+1
Level 64
Apr 26, 2022
Agreed. I tried Gaels and was surprised it didn't work
+1
Level 69
Sep 6, 2019
Weren't Vikings kind of Germanic tribes too? ;)
+2
Level 75
Sep 6, 2019
No.
+1
Level 69
Sep 19, 2019
So who were they?
+1
Level 57
Apr 24, 2020
Yes.
+1
Level 73
Jun 6, 2020
I took this quiz more than 3 years ago and specifically remember taking it and the fact that I didn't think of Celts and felt dumb.
+1
Level 76
Jun 6, 2020
I think the Germanic tribes should be broken down into Angles, Saxons and Jutes. They're all fairly well-known (e.g. Anglo-Saxon) enough for a quiz like this. I actually tried Anglos, Saxons and Jutes before trying Germanics.
+2
Level 24
Jun 10, 2020
Hey! Normans are Vikings! And they belong to German tribes
+3
Level ∞
Feb 18, 2023
Hey, wait a second. All these groups are Indo-Europeans. Why didn't Indo-European work for all of them!
+3
Level 76
Mar 29, 2023
I guess "animals" should be accepted now, then.
+1
Level 76
Mar 30, 2023
Whoa! Whoa! Now we're getting carried away. I won't go a step beyond humanoid life-forms!
+1
Level 60
Jan 6, 2021
Pretty sure that French People also invaded Great Britain.
+1
Level 76
Mar 29, 2023
The Normans were "French People" (Or at least, they came from France).
+2
Level 64
Aug 5, 2021
It's been said before, the Dutch invasion of 1667(might be considered a raid and not an invasion) and the "Glorious Revolution" which is just an invasion could be on the list. Also the capture of the Channel Islands by the Germans in WW2 could be considered.
+2
Level 67
Mar 18, 2023
The Channel islands aren't Great Britain so they shouldn't be here.
+1
Level 61
Mar 8, 2024
Should definitely include the Dutch invasion of 1688. That is the last successful invasion of Britain.

Is there any reason it hasn't been included in this quiz?

+1
Level 72
Mar 21, 2023
I'm curious how so many people missed the Celts. We're not gone yet!
+1
Level 58
Mar 31, 2023
probibly didnt consider it due to the inhabitants of the british isles also being celts. So celts invading celts wouldnt seem an answer
+1
Level 43
Mar 30, 2023
Got the top three
+2
Level 54
Mar 30, 2023
Picts or it didn't happen.
+2
Level 58
Mar 30, 2023
Since we are only talking about invasions, I suggest OP checks Louis VIII of France and Invasion of England (1326) (two separated event) on wikipedia.
+1
Level 56
Jun 18, 2024
Did they settle there though?
+1
Level 58
Mar 31, 2023
are the irish invasions considered part of the celts?