I had originally conceived of this post as a response to the thread concerning dialect diversity in modern England, but I realized that it is more generally applicable than that. In this spirit, I have eliminated all material specific to that thread (to which I shall reply in about an hour (my typing skills are terrible!), and created this new thread, which I hope all interested will find informative: *** Two reliable products of modern scholarship paint a picture of far more diverse settlement of "thaem maesten dael Bryttnes" than that claimed by the Venerable Bede. I here cite from: Robinson, Orrin W. "Old English and its Closest Relatives: a Survey of the Earliest Germanic Languages" (Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 1992), p.137: "According to Bede, the forebears of the Anglo-Saxons of his day came from three great Germanic groups on the Continent: the Saxons; the Angles, who lived north of the Saxons on Jutland peninsula, in Modern Schleswig; and the Jutes, who are supposed to have lived north of the Angles, also on the Jutland peninsula, Modern research suggests two rather large revisions of this picture. In the first place, it seems unlikely that the Jutes came directly from Jutland, if at all; rather, their archaeological remains bear a striking resemblance to those of the Ripuarian Franks of the middle Rhine. The second revision, which has some support from old sources, would include large numbers of Frisians among the invading tribes." *** My second source is Chickering, Howell D. Jr. "Beowulf: a Dual-Language Edition" (Garden City, NY: Anchor Books, 1977), p. 248: "A high level of Anglo-Saxon culture also existed in seventh-century East Anglia, as we can see from the magnificent Royal ship-burial discovered in 1939 at Sutton Hoo, Suffolk. This treasure-burial is sufficiently like the burials of Scyld and Beowulf to suggest that possibly the poem was composed in the East Anglian royal palace.of the Wuffing dynasty at nearby Rendlesham, within living memory of the ship-burial, which is dated to A.D. 625-55. The mound at Sutton-Hoo contained some grave-goods that link it with the royal burials at Uppsala, Sweden. With surprising exactness, Beowulf describes goods not merely of Anglo-Saxon times, but also Swedish goods of the presumed date of the historical events in the poem. A.D. 500-600. Was it through the early East Anglian court that the [p. 249] detailed knowledge of Scandinavian tribal history in Beowulf became available in England? The genealogy of the East Angles names one Wehha as the first king to rule over them in England. His son was Wuffa, from whom the dynasty took its name, the Wuffingas. These names correspond roughly to Weohstan, Wiglaf, and the Wylfingas [this author's own two cents: although Professor Chickering's argument makes sense in terms of sound-similarity, it doesn't make sense morphologically, as Wylfingas clearly means "The Sons of the Wolves", whereas Wiglaf, the man after whom the "Sons of the Wolves" tribe was supposedly named, clearly contains the initial element "wig", which means "war". (I'm still working on the meaning of the "-laf" element)] in Beowulf. It is conceivable that the Geats (in Swedish, the "Gauts") who lived near Uppsala, migrated to Anglia under the leadership of Weohstan or Wiglaf, bringing with them Swedish heirlooms that were later buried at Sutton Hoo. Perhaps they left Gautland after a disastrous defeat by the Swedes, as prophesied at the end of Beowulf. That the poem was composed under such circumstances makes a tantalizing hypothesis, but, alas, it cannot be definitely proven" *** My point is that the Germanic settlement of "thaem maesten dael Bryttnes" seems to have been a proper free-for-all, not limited to just three ethnic groups.