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Title: Early Britain—Roman Britain
Author: Conybeare, Edward
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Early Britain—Roman Britain" ***

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[Illustration: A MAP OF BRITAIN to illustrate THE ROMAN OCCUPATION.

London: Published by the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge.]


p. vii. _for_ Caesar 55 A.D.  _read_ Caesar 55 B.C.

"   56      "      11th century        "       12th century.

"   58      "      Damnonian Name      "       Damnonian name.

"   66      "      [Greek: êdikên]     "       [Greek: aethikaen]

"  108      "      sunrise             "       sunset.

"  133      "      some lost authority "       Suetonius.

"  141      "      DONATE              "       DONANTE.

"  150      "      Venta Silurum       "       Isca Silurum.

"  185      "      is flanked          "       was flanked.

"  209      "      iambic              "       trochaic.

"   "       "      Exquis              "       Ex quis.

"  213      "      one priceless       "       once priceless.

"  232      "      in pieces           "       to pieces.

"  238      "      constrigit          "       constringit.

"   "       "      Sparas              "       Sparsas.


A little book on a great subject, especially when that book is one
of a "series," is notoriously an object of literary distrust. For
the limitations thus imposed upon the writer are such as few men can
satisfactorily cope with, and he must needs ask the indulgence of his
readers for his painfully-felt shortcomings in dealing with the mass
of material which he has to manipulate. And more especially is this
the case when the volume which immediately precedes his in the series
is such a mine of erudition as the 'Celtic Britain' of Professor Rhys.

In the present work my object has been to give a readable sketch
of the historical growth and decay of Roman influence in Britain,
illustrated by the archaeology of the period, rather than a mainly
archaeological treatise with a bare outline of the history. The chief
authorities of which I have made use are thus those original classical
sources for the early history of our island, so carefully and ably
collected in the 'Monumenta Historica Britannica';[1] which, along
with Huebner's 'Corpus Inscriptionum Latinarum[2],' must always be
the foundation of every work on Roman Britain. Amongst the many
other authorities consulted I must acknowledge my special debt to Mr.
Elton's 'Origins of English History'; and yet more to Mr. Haverfield's
invaluable publications in the 'Antiquary' and elsewhere, without
which to keep abreast of the incessant development of my subject by
the antiquarian spade-work now going on all over the land would be an
almost hopeless task.



A complete Bibliography of Roman Britain would be wholly beyond the
scope of the present work. Much of the most valuable material, indeed,
has never been published in book form, and must be sought out in the
articles of the 'Antiquary,' 'Hermes,' etc., and the reports of the
many local Archaeological Societies. All that is here attempted is to
indicate some of the more valuable of the many scores of sources to
which my pages are indebted.

To begin with the ancient authorities. These range through upwards of
a thousand years; from Herodotus in the 5th century before Christ, to
Gildas in the 6th century after. From about 100 A.D. onwards we find
that almost every known classical authority makes more or less mention
of Britain. A list of over a hundred such authors is given in the
'Monumenta Historica Britannica'; and upwards of fifty are quoted
in this present work. Historians, poets, geographers, naturalists,
statesmen, ecclesiastics, all give touches which help out our
delineation of Roman Britain.

Amongst the historians the most important are--Caesar, who tells his
own tale; Tacitus, to whom we owe our main knowledge of the Conquest,
with the later stages of which he was contemporary; Dion Cassius, who
wrote his history in the next century, the 2nd A.D.;[3] the various
Imperial biographers of the 3rd century; the Imperial panegyrists of
the 4th, along with Ammianus Marcellinus, who towards the close of
that century connects and supplements their stories; Claudian, the
poet-historian of the 5th century, whose verses throw a lurid gleam
on his own disastrous age, when Roman authority in Britain was at its
last gasp; and finally the British writers, Nennius and Gildas, whose
"monotonous plaint" shows that authority dead and gone, with the first
stirring of our new national life already quickening amid the decay.

Of geographical and general information we gain most from Strabo, in
the Augustan age, who tells what earlier and greater geographers than
himself had already discovered about our island; Pliny the Elder,
who, in the next century, found the ethnology and botany of Britain so
valuable for his 'Natural History'; Ptolemy, a generation later yet,
who includes an elaborate survey of our island in his stupendous Atlas
(as it would now be called) of the world;[4] and the unknown compilers
of the 'Itinerary,' the 'Notitia,' and the 'Ravenna Geography.' To
these must be added the epigrammatist Martial, who lived at the time
of the Conquest, and whose references to British matters throw a
precious light on the social connection between Britain and Rome which
aids us to trace something of the earliest dawn of Christianity in our



Aelian               III. A. 6       A.D.  220. Naturalist.
Appian               IV. D. 1        A.D.  140. Historian.
Aristides            V.E. 4          A.D.  160. Orator.
Aristotle            I.C. 1          B.C.  333. Philosopher.
St. Athanasius       V.B. 1, etc.    A.D.  333. Theologian.
Ausonius             V.B. 7          A.D.  380. Poet.
Caesar               V. etc.         B.C.   55. Historian.
Capitolinus          IV. E. 3        A.D.  290. Imperial Biographer.
Catullus             V.E. 4          B.C.   33. Poet.
St. Chrysostom       V.E. 15, etc.   A.D.  380. Theologian.
Cicero               I.D. 3, etc.    B.C.   55. Orator, etc.
Claudian             vi. etc.        A.D.  400. Poet-Historian.
St. Clement          V.E. 4          A.D.   80. Theologian.
Constantius          V.F. 4          A.D.  480. Ecclesiastical
Diodorus Siculus     I.E. 11, etc.   B.C.   44. Geographer.
Dion Cassius         v. etc.         A.D.  150. Historian.
Dioscorides          I.E. 4          A.D.   80. Physician.
Eumenius             V.A. 1          A.D.  310. Imperial Panegyrist.
Eutropius            V.A. 1          A.D.  300. Imperial Panegyrist.
Firmicus             V.B. 2          A.D.  350. Controversialist.
Frontinus            III. A. 1       A.D.   80. Wrote on Tactics.
Fronto               IV. D. 2        A.D.  100. Historian.
Gildas               vi. etc.        A.D.  500. Theologian.
Hegesippus           II. F. 3        A.D.  150. Historian.
Herodian             IV. E. 3        A.D.  220. Historian.
Herodotus            I.C. 3          B.C.  444. Historian, etc.
St. Hilary           V.B. 3          A.D.  350. Theologian.
Horace               III. A. 7       B.C.   25. Poet.
Itinerary            IV. A. 7        A.D.  200.
St. Jerome           V.C. 12         A.D.  400. Theologian.
Josephus             III. F. 1       A.D.   70. Historian.
Juvenal              III. F. 5       A.D.   75. Satirist.
Lampridius           IV. E. 1        A.D.  290. Imperial Biographer.
Lucan                II. E. 1        A.D.   60. Historical Poet.
Mamertinus           V.A. 5          A.D.  280. Panegyrist.
Marcellinus          vi. etc.        A.D.  380. Historian.
Martial              vi. etc.        A.D.   70. Epigrammatist.
Maximus              II. C. 13       A.D.   30. Wrote Memorabilia.
Mela                 I.H. 7          A.D.   50. Geographer, etc.
Menologia Graeca     V.E. 5          A.D.  550.
Minucius Felix       I.E. 2          A.D.  210. Geographer.
Nemesianus           IV. C. 15       A.D.  280. Wrote on Hunting.
Nennius              vi. etc.        A.D.  500. Historian.
Notitia              vi. etc.        A.D.  406.
Olympiodorus          V.C. 10        A.D.  425. Historian.
Onomacritus          I.C. 1          B.C.  333. Poet.
Oppian               IV. C. 15       A.D.  140. Wrote on Hunting
Origen               V.E. 13         A.D.  220. Theologian.
Pliny                vi. etc.        A.D.   70. Naturalist.
Plutarch             I.C. 1          A.D.   80. Historian, etc.
Polyaenus             II. E. 8       A.D.  180. Wrote on Tactics.
Procopius            V.D. 5          A.D.  555. Wrote on Geography,
Propertius           III. 1. 7       B.C.   10. Poet.
Prosper              V.F. 4          A.D.  450. Ecclesiastical
Prudentius           IV. C. 15       A.D.  370. Ecclesiastical Poet.
Ptolemy              v. etc.         A.D.  120. Geographer.
Ravenna Geography    vi. etc.        A.D.  450.
Seneca               III. C. 7       A.D.   60. Philosopher.
Sidonius Apollinaris V.F. 3          A.D.  475. Letters.
Solinus              I.E. 4, etc.    A.D.   80. Geographer.
Spartianus           IV. D. 2        A.D.  303. Historian.
Strabo               vi. etc.        B.C.   20. Geographer.
Suetonius            I.H. 10         A.D.  110. Imperial Biographer.
Symmachus            IV. C. 15       A.D.  390. Statesman, etc.
Tacitus              v. etc.         A.D.   80. Historian.
Tertullian           V.E. 11         A.D.  180. Theologian.
Theodoret            V.E. 4          A.D.  420. Wrote Commentaries.
Tibullus             III. A. 7       B.C.   20. Poet.
Timaeus               I.D. 2         B.C.  300. Geographer.
Vegetius             V.B. 5          A.D.  380. Historian.
Venantius            V.E. 4          A.D.  580. Wrote Ecclesiastical
Victor               V.A. 9          A.D.  380. Historian.
Virgil               III. 1. 7       B.C.  30.  Poet.
Vitruvius.           I.G. 5          A.D.       Wrote on Geography,
Vobiscus.            IV. C. 17       A.D.  290. Historian.
Xiphilinus           vi. etc.        A.D. 1200. Abridged Dio Cassius.
Zosimus              V.C. 11         A.D.  400. Historian.


The constant accession of new material, especially from the unceasing
spade-work always going on in every quarter of the island, makes
modern books on Roman Britain tend to become obsolete, sometimes with
startling rapidity. But even when not quite up to date, a well-written
book is almost always very far from worthless, and much may be learnt
from any in the following list:--

BABCOCK            'The Two Last Centuries of Roman Britain' (1891).
BARNES             'Ancient Britain' (1858).
BROWNE, BISHOP     'The Church before Augustine' (1895).
BRUCE              'Handbook to the Roman Wall' (1895).
CAMDEN             'Britannia' (1587).
COOTE              'Romans in Britain' (1878).
DAWKINS            'Early Man in Britain' (1880).
                   'The Place of the Welsh in English History' (1889).
DILL               'Roman Society' (1899).
ELTON              'Origins of English History' (1890).
EVANS, SIR J.      'British Coins' (1869).
                   'Bronze Implements' (1881).
                   'Stone Implements' (1897).
FREEMAN            'Historical Essays' (1879).
                   'English Towns' (1883).
                   'Tyrants of Britain' (1886).
FROUDE             'Julius Caesar' (1879).
GUEST              'Origines Celticae' (1883).
HADDAN AND STUBBS  'Concilia' (1869).
                   'Remains' (1876).
HARDY              'Monumenta Historica Britannica' (1848).
HAVERFIELD         'Roman World' (1899), etc.
HODGKIN            'Italy and her Invaders' (1892), etc.
HOGARTH (ed.)      'Authority and Archaeology' (1899).
HORSLEY            'Britannia Romana' (1732).
HUEBNER            'Inscriptiones Britannicae Romanae' (1873).
                   'Inscriptiones Britannicae
                    Christianae' (1876), etc.
KEMBLE             'Saxons in England' (1876).
KENRICK            'Phoenicia' (1855).
                   'Papers on History' (1864).
LEWIN              'Invasion of Britain' (1862).
LUBBOCK, SIR J.    'Origin of Civilization' (1889).
LYALL              'Natural Religion' (1891).
LYELL              'Antiquity of Man' (1873).
MAINE, SIR H.      'Early History of Institutions' (1876).
MAITLAND           'Domesday Studies' (1897).
MARQUARDT          'Römische Staatsverwaltung' (1873).
MOMMSEN            'Provinces of the Roman Empire' (1865).
NEILSON            'Per Lineam Valli' (1892).
PEARSON            'Historical Atlas of Britain' (1870).
RHYS               'Celtic Britain' (1882).
                   'Celtic Heathendom' (1888).
                   'Welsh People' (1900).
ROLLESTON          'British Barrows' (1877).
                   'Prehistoric Fauna' (1880).
SCARTH             'Roman Britain' (1885).
SMITH, C.R.        'Collectanea' (1848), etc.
TOZER              'History of Ancient Geography' (1897).
TRAILL AND MANN    'Social England' (1901).
USHER, BP.         'British Ecclesiastical Antiquity' (1639).
VINE               'Caesar in Kent' (1899).
WRIGHT             'Celt, Roman and Saxon' (1875).


DATE      EVENTS.                                  EMPEROR.

350 (?)   Pytheas discovers Britain [I.D. 1]
100 (?)   Divitiacus Overlord of Britain (?)
            [II. B. 4]
          Gauls settle on Thames and Humber
            (?) [I.F. 4]
          Posidonius visits Britain [I.D. 3]
          Birth of Julius Caesar [II. A. 6]
 58       Caesar conquers Gaul [II. A. 9]
 56       Sea-fight with Veneti and Britons
            [II. B. 3]
 55       First invasion of Britain [II.
            C., D.]
          Cassivellaunus Overlord of Britain
            (?) [II. F. 3]
          Mandubratius, exiled Prince of
            Trinobantes, appeals to Caesar (?)
            [II. E. 10]
 54       Second Invasion of Britain [II.
            E., F., G.]
 52       Revolt of Gaul. Commius, Prince
            of Arras, flies to Britain and
            reigns in South-east [III. A. 1]
 44       Caesar slain [II. G. 9]
 32       Battle of Actium [III. A. 6]             Augustus.
          About this time the sons of Commius
            reign in Kent, etc., Addeomarus
            over Iceni, and Tasciovan
            at Verulam [III. A. 1]
A.D.      About this time the Commian
            princes are overthrown [III.
            A. 2]
          Cymbeline, son of Tasciovan, becomes
            Overlord of Britain [III.
            A. 4]. Commians appeal to
            Augustus [III. A. 5]
 14       Death of Augustus                        Tiberius.
 29       Consulship of the Gemini. The
          Crucifixion (?)
 37       Death of Tiberius                        Caligula.
 40 (?)   Cymbeline banishes Adminius,
            who appeals to Rome [III. A. 5]
          Caligula threatens invasion [III.
            A. 6]
 41       Caligula poisoned [III. A. 9]            Claudius.
          Death of Cymbeline (?). His son
            Caradoc succeeds
 43       Antedrigus and Vericus contend
            for Icenian throne: Vericus appeals
            to Rome [III. A. 9]
 44       Claudius subdues Britain [III. B.]
          Cogidubnus, King in South-east,
            made Roman Legate [III. C. 8]
 45       Triumph of Claudius [III. C.
            1, 2]
 47       Ovation of Aulus Plautius, conqueror
            of Britain. [III. C. 2]
 48       Vespasian and Titus crush British
            guerrillas [III. C. 3]
 50       Britain made "Imperial" Province.
            Ostorius Pro-praetor
            [III. C. 9]
          Icenian revolt crushed [III. D.
          Camelodune a colony [III. D. 8]
 51       Silurian revolt under Caradoc
            [III. D. 7, 8]
 52       Caradoc captive [III. D. 9]
 53       Uriconium and Caerleon founded
            [III. D. 12]
 54       Death of Ostorius [III. D. 11]
 55       Didius Gallus Pro-praetor. Last
            Silurian effort [III. D. 13]
          Death of Claudius [III. D. 13]           Nero.
 56 (?)   Aulus Plautius marries Pomponia
            Graecina [V.E. 10]
 61       Suetonius Paulinus Pro-praetor
            [III. E. 7]

          Massacre of Druids in Mona [III.
            E. 8, 9]
          Boadicean revolt [III. E. 2-13].
            St. Peter in Britain (?) [V.E. 5]
 62       Turpiliannus Pro-praetor. "Peace"
            in Britain [III. E. 13]
 63 (?)   Claudia Rufina Marries Pudens
            [V.E. 9]
 64       Burning of Rome. First Persecution.
            St. Paul in Britain (?)
            [V.E. 4]
 65       Aristobulus Bishop in Britain (?)
            [V.E. 5]
 68       Death of Nero (June 10)                  Galba.
          Galba slain (Dec. 16)                    Civil War between
 69       Otho slain (April 20)                    Otho and Vitellius.
          Vitellius slain (Dec. 20)
          British army under Agricola              Vespasian.
            pronounces for Vespasian
            [III. F. 1]
 70       Cerealis Pro-praetor. Brigantes
            subdued by Agricola [III. F. 1]
          Destruction of Jerusalem [IV.
            C. 5]
 75       Frontinus Pro-praetor. Silurians
            subdued by Agricola [III. F. 2]
 78       Agricola Pro-praetor. Ordovices
            and Mona subdued [III. F. 3]
 79       Agricola Latinizes Britain [III.         Titus.
            F. 4]. Vespasian dies
 80       Agricola's first Caledonian campaign
            [III. F. 5].
 81       Agricola's rampart from Forth to         Domitian.
            Clyde [III. F. 7]. Titus dies
 82       Agricola invades Ireland (?) [III.
            F. 5]
 83       Agricola advances into Northern
            Caledonia [III. F. 5]
          First circumnavigation of Britain
            [III. F. 7]
 84       Agricola defeats Galgacus [III.
            F. 6], resigns and dies [III. F. 7]

 95       Second persecution. Flavia Domitilla
          [V.E. 11]
 96       Domitian slain                           Nerva.
 98       Nerva dies                               Trajan.
117       Trajan dies                              Hadrian.
120       Hadrian visits Britain and builds Wall
          [IV. D. 1]
          Britain divided into "Upper" and
          "Lower" [IV. D. 3]
          First "Britannia" coinage [IV. D. 4]
138       Hadrian dies                             Antoninus Pius.
139       Lollius Urbicus, Legate in Britain,
          replaces Agricola's rampart by turf
          wall from Forth to Clyde [IV. D. 5]
140       Britain made Pro-consular [IV. E. 5]
161       Antoninus dies                           Marcus Aurelius.
180       British Church organized by Pope
          Eleutherius (?) [V.E. 12]
          Marcus Aurelius dies                     Commodus.
181       Caledonian invasion driven back by
          Ulpius Marcellus [IV. E. 1]
184       Commodus "Britannicus" [IV. E. 1]
185       British army mutinies against reforms
          of Perennis [IV. E. 1]
187       Pertinax quells mutineers [IV. E. 3]
192       Pertinax superseded by Junius Severus
          [IV. E. 3]
          Death of Commodus                        Interregnum.
193       Pertinax slain by Julianus and Albinus.  Pertinax; Julianus;
          Julianus slain                           Albinus; Severus.
          Severus proclaimed. Albinus Emperor in
          Britain [IV. E. 3]
197       British army defeated at Lyons.          Severus.
          Albinus slain [IV. E. 3]
201       Vinius Lupus, Pro-praetor, buys off
          Caledonians [IV. E. 4]
208       Caledonian invasion. Severus comes to
          Britain [IV. E. 5]
209       Severus overruns Caledonia [IV.
            E. 5]
210       Severus completes Hadrian's Wall
            [IV. E. 6]
211       Severus dies at York [IV. G. 2]          {Caracalla.
212       Geta murdered [IV. G. 2]                 Caracalla.
215 (?)   Roman citizenship extended to
          British provincials [IV. G. 2]
(?)       Itinerary of Antonius [IV. A. 7]
217       Caracalla slain                          Macrinus.
218       Macrinus slain                           Helagabalus.
222       Helagabalus slain                        Alexander Severus.
235       Alexander Severus slain                  Maximin.
238       Maximin slain                            Gordian.
244       Gordian slain                            Philip.
249       Philip slain                             Decius.
251       Decius slain                             Gallus.
254       Gallus slain                             {Valerian.
258       Postumus proclaimed Emperor in
          Britain [V.A. 1]
260       Valerian slain                           Gallienus.
265       Victorinus associated with
          Postumus [V.A. 1]
268       Gallienus slain                          Tetricus.
269       Tetricus slain                           Claudius Gothicus.
270       Claudius Gothicus dies                   Aurelian.
273 (?)   Constantius Chlorus marries
          Helen, a British lady [V.A. 6]
274       Constantine the Great born at
          York [V.A. 6]
275       Aurelian slain                           Tacitus.
276       Tacitus slain                            Florianus.
          Florianus slain                          Probus.
277       Vandal prisoners deported to
          Britain [V.A. 1]
282       Probus slain                             Carus.
283       Carus dies                               Numerian.
284       Numerian dies                            Carinus.
285       Carinus dies                             {Diocletian.
286       Carausius, first "Count of the
          Saxon Shore," becomes Emperor
          in Britain [V.A. 3]
292       Constantine and Galerius "Caesars"
          [V.A. 5]
294       Carausius murdered by Allectus
          [V.A. 4]
296       Constantius slays Allectus and
          recovers Britain [V.A. 7, 8]
          Britain divided into four "Diocletian"
          Provinces [V.A. 9]
303       Tenth Persecution. Martyrdom
          of St. Alban [V.A. 11]
305       Diocletian and Maximian abdicate         {Constantius.
          [V.A. 12]                                {Galerius.
306       Constantius dies at York [V.A.
          13]. Constantine, Galerius,
          Maxentius, Licinius, etc., contend       Interregnum.
          for Empire [V.A. 14]
312       Constantine with British Army
          wins at Milvian Bridge, and
          embraces Christianity [V.A. 14]          Constantine.
314       Council of Arles [V.E. 14]
325       Council of Nicaea [V.B. 1]
                                                   {Constantine II.
337       Constantine dies                         {Constantius II.
340       Constantine II. dies
343       Constans and Constantius II. visit
          Britain [V.B. 1]
350       Constans slain. Usurpation of            Constantius II.
          Magnentius in Britain [V.B. 3]
353       Magnentius dies [V.B. 3]
358       Britain under Julian. Exportation
          of corn [V.B. 4]
360       Council of Ariminum [V.E. 14]
361       Death of Constantius [V.B. 6]            Julian.
362       Lupicinus, Legate in Britain, repels
          first attacks of Picts
          and Scots [V.B. 5]
363       Julian dies                              {Valentinian.
365       Saxons, Picts, and Scots ravage
          shores of Britain [V.B. 7]
366       Gratian associated in Empire             {Valens.
367       Great barbarian raid on Britain
          Roman commanders slain [V.
          B. 7]
368       Theodosius, Governor of Britain,
          expels Picts and Scots [V.
          B. 7]
369       Theodosius recovers Valentia [V.
          B. 7]
374       Saxons invade Britain [V.B. 8]
375       Valentinian dies                         {Gratian.
                                                   {Valentinian II.

378       Valens slain. Theodosius associated      {Valentinian II.
          in Empire                                {Theodosius.

383       Gratian slain. British Army proclaims    {Valentinian II.
          Maximus and conquer                      {Theodosius.
          Gaul [V.C. 1]
387       British Army under Maximus take
          Rome [V.C. 1]
388       Maximus slain. First British
          settlement in Armorica (?) [V.
          C. 1]
392       Valentinian II. slain. Penal laws        Theodosius.
          against Heathenism
394       Ninias made Bishop of Picts by
          Pope Siricius (?) [V.F. 1]
395       Death of Theodosius                      {Arcadius.
396       Stilicho sends a Legion to protect
          Britain (?) [V.C. 1]
402       Theodosius II. associated in Empire      {Honorius.
                                                   {Theodosius II.
406       Stilicho recalls Legion to meet
          Radagaisus [V.C. 2]
          'Notitia' composed (?) [V.C. 3-9]
          German tribes flood Gaul [V.C. 2]

407       British Army proclaim Constantine
          III. and reconquer Gaul [V.C.

408       Arcadius dies. Constantine III.          {Honorius.
          recognized as "Augustus"                 {Theodosius II.
                                                   {Constantine III.
410       Visigoths under Alaric take Rome
          [V.C. 11]

411       Constantine III. slain                   {Honorius.
                                                   {Theodosius II.
413 (?)   Pelagian heresy arises in Britain
          [V.F. 3]

415 (?)   Rescript of Honorius to the Cities
          of Britain [V.C. 11]

423       Death of Honorius                        Theodosius II.

425       Valentinian III., son of Galla           {Theodosius II.
          Placidia, Emperor of West [V.D. 3]       {Valentinian III.

429 (?)   SS. Germanus and Lupus sent to
          Britain by Pope Celestine (?)
          [V.F. 4]

432 (?)   St. Patrick sent to Ireland by
            Pope Celestine [V.F. 2]

435 (?)   Roman Legion sent to aid Britons (?)

436 (?)   Roman forces finally withdrawn (?)

446       Vain appeal of Britons to Actius (?)
          [V.D. 2]

447 (?)   The Alleluia Battle [V.F. 4]

449 (?)   Hengist and Horsa settle in
          Thanet (?) [V.D. 3]

450 (?)   English defeat Picts at Stamford
          (?) [V.B. 2]
          Theodosius II. dies                      Valentinian III.

455 (?)   Battle of Aylesford begins English
          conquest of Britain (?) [V.D. 2]




§ A.--Palaeolithic Age--Extinct fauna--River-bed men--Flint
implements--Burnt stones--Worked bones--Glacial climate ... _p_. 25

§ B.--Neolithic Age--"Ugrians"--Polished flints--Jadite--Gold
ornaments--Cromlechs--Forts--Bronze Age--Copper and tin--Stonehenge
... _p_. 28

§ C.--Aryan immigrants--Gael and Briton--Earliest classical
nomenclature--British Isles--Albion--Ierne--Cassiterides--Phoenician
tin trade _viâ_ Cadiz ... _p_. 31

§ D.--Discoveries of Pytheas--Greek tin trade _viâ_ Marseilles--Trade
routes--Ingots--Coracles--Earliest British coins--Lead-mining ... _p_.

§ E.--Pytheas trustworthy--His notes on Britain--Agricultural
tribes--Barns--Manures--Dene Holes--Mead--Beer--Parched
corn--Pottery--Mill-stones--Villages--Cattle--Pastoral tribes--Savage
tribes--Cannibalism--Polyandry--Beasts of chase--Forest trees--British
clothing and arms--Sussex iron ... _p_. 39

§ F.--Celtic types--"Roy" and "Dhu"--Gael--Silurians--Loegrians--Basque
peoples--Shifting of clans--Constitutional disturbances--Monarchy
--Oligarchy--Demagogues--First inscribed coins ... _p_. 50

§ G.--Clans at Julian invasion--Permanent natural
boundaries--Population Celtic settlements--"Duns"--Maiden Castle ...
_p_. 54

§ H.--Religious state of Britain--Illustrated by
Deities--Mistletoe--Sacred herbs--"Ovum Anguinum"--Suppression of
Druidism--Druidism and Christianity _p_. 62



B.C. 55, 54

§ A.--Caesar and Britain--Breakdown of Roman Republican
institutions--Corruption abroad and at home--Rise of Caesar--Conquest
of Gaul ... _p_. 73

§ B.--Sea-fight with Veneti and Britons--Pretexts for invading
Britain--British dominion of Divitiacus--Gallic tribes in
Britain--Atrebates--Commius ... _p_. 79

§ C.--Defeat of Germans--Bridge over Rhine--Caesar's army--Dread
of ocean--Fleet at Boulogne--Commius sent to Britain--Channel
crossed--Attempt on Dover--Landing at Deal--Legionary
sentiment--British army dispersed ... _p_. 83

§ D.--Wreck of fleet--Fresh British levy--Fight in corn-field--British
chariots--Attack on camp--Romans driven into sea ... _p_. 94

§ E.--Caesar worsted--New fleet built--Caesar at
Rome--Cicero--Expedition of 54 B.C.--Unopposed landing--Pro-Roman
Britons--Trinobantes--Mandubratius--British army surprised--"Old
England's Hole" ... _p_. 102

§ F.--Fleet again wrecked--Britons rally under Caswallon--Battle of
Barham Down--Britons fly to London--Origin of London--Patriot army
dispersed ... _p_. 112

§ G.--Passage of Thames--Submission of clans--Storm of Verulam--Last
patriot effort in Kent--Submission of Caswallon--Romans leave
Britain--"Caesar Divus" ... _p_. 118



B.C. 54-A.D. 85

§ A.--Britain after Julius Caesar--House of Commius--Inscribed
coins--House of Cymbeline--Tasciovan--Commians overthrown--Vain
appeal to Augustus--Ancyran Tablet--Romano-British
trade--Lead-mining--British fashions in Rome--Adminius banished by
Cymbeline--Appeal to Caligula--Futile demonstration--Icenian civil
war--Vericus banished--Appeal to Claudius--Invasion prepared ... _p_.

§ B.--Aulus Plautius--Reluctance to embark--Narcissus--Passage of
Channel--Landing at Portchester--Strength of expedition--Vespasian's
legion--British defeats--Line of Thames held--Arrival of
Claudius--Camelodune taken--General submission of island _p_. 131

§ C.--Claudius triumphs--Gladiatorial shows--Last stand of
Britons--Gallantry of Titus--Ovation of Plautius--Distinctions
bestowed--Triumphal arch--Commemorative coinage--Conciliatory
policy--British worship of Claudius--Cogidubnus--Attitude of
clans--Britain made Imperial province ... _p_. 135

§ D.--Ostorius Pro-praetor--Pacification of Midlands--Icenian
revolt--The Fleam Dyke--Iceni crushed--Cangi--Brigantes--Silurian
war--Storm of Caer Caradoc--Treachery of Cartismandua--Caradoc
at Rome--Death of Ostorius--Uriconium and Caerleon--Britain
quieted--Death of Claudius ... _p_. 142

§ E.--Neronian misgovernment--Seneca--Prasutagus--Boadicean
revolt--Sack of Camelodune--Suetonius in Mona--Druidesses--Sack
of London and Verulam--Boadicea crushed at Battle Bridge--Peace of
Petronius ... _p_. 151

§ F.--Otho and Vitellius--Civil war--Army of
Britain--Priscus--Agricola--Vespasian Emperor--Cerealis--Brigantes
put down--Silurians put down--Agricola Pro-praetor--Ordovices put
down--Frontinus--Pacification of South Britain--Roman
civilization introduced--Caledonian campaign--Galgacus--Agricola's
rampart--Domitian--Resignation and death of Agricola ... _p_. 159



A.D. 85-211

§ A.--Pacification of Britain--Roman roads--London their
centre--Authority for names--Watling Street--Ermine Street--Icknield
Way ... _p_. 165

§ B.--Romano-British towns--Ancient lists--Method of
identification--Dense rural population--Remains in Cam
valley--Coins--Thimbles--Horseshoes ... _p_. 171

§ C.--Fortification of towns late--Chief Roman
centres--London--York--Chester--Bath--Silchester--Remains there
found--Romano-British handicrafts--Pottery--Basket-work--Mining--Rural
life--Villas--Forests--Hunting-dogs--Husbandry--Britain under _Pax
Romana ... p_. 178

§ D.--The unconquered North--Hadrian's Wall--Upper and Lower
Britain--Romano-British coinage--Wall of Antoninus--Britain
Pro-consular ... _p_. 193

§ E.--Commodus Britannicus--Ulpius Marcellus--Murder of Perennis--Era
of military turbulence--Pertinax--Albinus--British army defeated at
Lyons--Severus Emperor--Caledonian war--Severus overruns Highlands ...
_p_. 198

§ F.--Severus completes Hadrian's Wall--"Mile
Castles"--"Stations"--Garrison--The Vallum--Rival
theories--Evidence--Remains--Coins--Altars--Mithraism--Inscription to
Julia Domna--"Written Rock" on Gelt--Cilurnum aqueduct ... _p_. 203

§ G.--Death of Severus--Caracalla and Geta--Roman
citizenship--Extension to veterans--_Tabulae honestae
missionis_--Bestowed on all British provincials ... _p_. 212



A.D. 211-455

§ A.--Era of Pretenders--Probus--Vandlebury--First notice of
Saxons--Origin of name--Count of the Saxon Shore--Carausius
--Allectus--Last Romano-British coinage--Britain Mistress of
the Sea--Reforms of Diocletian--Constantius Chlorus--Re-conquest
of Britain--Diocletian provinces--Diocletian persecution--The
last "Divus"--General scramble for Empire--British army wins
for Constantine--Christianity established ... _p_. 218

§ B.--Spread of Gospel--Arianism--Britain orthodox--Last
Imperial visit--Heathen temples stripped--British
Emperors--Magnentius--Gratian--Julian--British corn-trade--First
inroad of Picts and Scots--Valentinian--Saxon raids--Campaign
of Theodosius--Re-conquest of Valentia--Wall restored and cities
fortified ... _p_. 229

§ C.--Roman evacuation of Britain begun--Maximus--Settlement
of Brittany--Radagaisus invades Italy--Twentieth Legion leaves
Britain--Britain in the 'Notitia'--Final effort of British army--The
last Constantine--Last Imperial Rescript to Britain--Sack of Rome by
Alaric--Final collapse of Roman rule in Britain ... _p_. 235

§ D.--Beginning of English Conquest--Vortigern--Jutes in
Thanet--Battle of Stamford--Massacre of Britons--Valentinian
III.--Latest Roman coin found in Britain--Progress of
Conquest--The Cymry--Survival of Romano-British titles--Arturian
Romances--Procopius--Belisarius--Roman claims revived by
Charlemagne--The British Empire ... _p_. 244

§ E.--Survivals of Romano-British civilization--Romano-British
Church--Legends of its origin--St. Paul--St. Peter--Joseph
of Arimathaea--Glastonbury--Historical notices--Claudia and
Pudens--Pomponia--Church of St. Pudentiana--Patristic references
to Britain--Tertullian--Origen--Legend of Lucius--Native
Christianity--British Bishops at Councils--Testimony of Chrysostom and
Jerome ... _p_. 249

§ F.--British missionaries--Ninias--Patrick--Beatus--British
heresiarchs--Pelagius--Fastidius--Pelagianism stamped out by
Germanus--The Alleluia Battle--Romano-British churches--Why so seldom
found--Conclusion ... _p_. 261





Palaeolithic Age--Extinct fauna--River-bed men--Flint
implements--Burnt stones--Worked bones--Glacial climate.

A. 1.--All history, as Professor Freeman so well points out, centres
round the great name of Rome. For, of all the great divisions of
the human race, it is the Aryan family which has come to the front.
Assimilating, developing, and giving vastly wider scope to the highest
forms of thought and religion originated by other families, notably
the Semitic, the various Aryan nationalities form, and have formed
for ages, the vanguard of civilization. These nationalities are now
practically co-extensive with Christendom; and on them has been laid
by Divine Providence "the white man's burden"--the task of raising the
rest of mankind along with themselves to an ever higher level--social,
material, intellectual, and spiritual.

A. 2.--Aryan history is thus, for all practical purposes, the history
of mankind. And a mere glance at Aryan history shows how entirely
its great central feature is the period during which all the
leading forces of Aryanism were grouped and fused together under
the world-wide Empire of Rome. In that Empire all the streams of our
Ancient History find their end, and from that Empire all those of
Modern History take their beginning. "All roads," says the proverb,
"lead to Rome;" and this is emphatically true of the lines of
historical research; for as we tread them we are conscious at every
step of the _Romani Nominis umbra_, the all-pervading influence of
"the mighty name of Rome."

A. 3.--And above all is this true of the history of Western Europe
in general and of our own island in particular. For Britain, History
(meaning thereby the more or less trustworthy record of political and
social development) does not even begin till its destinies were drawn
within the sphere of Roman influence. It is with Julius Caesar, that
great writer (and yet greater maker) of History, that, for us, this
record commences.

A. 4.--But before dealing with "Britain's tale" as connected with
"Caesar's fate," it will be well to note briefly what earlier
information ancient documents and remains can afford us with regard
to our island and its inhabitants. With the earliest dwellers upon its
soil of whom traces remain we are, indeed, scarcely concerned. For in
the far-off days of the "River-bed" men (five thousand or five hundred
thousand years ago, according as we accept the physicist's or the
geologist's estimate of the age of our planet) Britain was not yet an
island. Neither the Channel nor the North Sea as yet cut it off from
the Continent when those primaeval savages herded beside the banks of
its streams, along with elephant and hippopotamus, bison and elk, bear
and hyaena; amid whose remains we find their roughly-chipped flint
axes and arrow-heads, the fire-marked stones which they used in
boiling their water, and the sawn or broken bases of the antlers
which for some unknown purpose[6] they were in the habit of cutting
up--perhaps, like the Lapps of to-day, to anchor their sledges withal
in the snow. For the great Glacial Epoch, which had covered half the
Northern Hemisphere with its mighty ice-sheet, was still, in their
day, lingering on, and their environment was probably that of Northern
Siberia to-day. Some archaeologists, indeed, hold that they are to
this day represented by the Esquimaux races; but this theory cannot be
considered in any way proved.

A. 5.--Whether, indeed, they were "men" at all, in any real sense
of the word, may well be questioned. For of the many attempts which
philosophers in all ages have made to define the word "man," the only
one which is truly defensible is that which differentiates him
from other animals, not by his physical or intellectual, but by his
spiritual superiority. Many other creatures are as well adapted in
bodily conformation for their environment, and the lowest savages are
intellectually at a far lower level of development than the highest
insects; but none stand in the same relation to the Unseen. "Man," as
has been well said, "is the one animal that can pray." And there is
nothing amongst the remains of these "river-bed men" to show us that
they either did pray, or could. Intelligence, such as is now found
only in human beings, they undoubtedly had. But whether they had
the capacity for Religion must be left an unsolved problem. In this
connection, however, it may be noted that Tacitus, in describing the
lowest savages of his Germania [c. 46], "with no horses, no homes, no
weapons, skin-clad, nesting on the bare ground, men and women alike,
barely kept alive by herbs and such flesh as their bone-tipped arrows
can win them," makes it his climax that they are "beneath the need of
prayer;"--adding that this spiritual condition is, "beyond all others,
that least attainable by man."


Neolithic Age--"Ugrians"--Polished flints--Jadite--Gold
ornaments--Cromlechs--Forts--Bronze Age--Copper and tin--Stonehenge.

B. 1.--Whatever they were, they vanish from our ken utterly, these
Palaeolithic savages, and are followed, after what lapse of time we
know not, by the users of polished flint weapons, the tribes of the
Neolithic period. And with them we find ourselves in touch with the
existing development of our island. For an island it already was, and
with substantially the same area and shores and physical features as
we have them still. Our rivers ran in the same valleys, our hills rose
with the same contour, in those far-off days as now. And while the
place of flint in the armoury of Britain was taken first by bronze
and then by iron, these changes were made by no sudden breaks, but so
gradually that it is impossible to say when one period ended and the
next began.

B.2.--It is almost certain, however, that the Neolithic men were
not of Aryan blood. They are commonly spoken of by the name of
_Ugrians_,[7] the "ogres"[8] of our folk-lore; which has also handed
down, in the spiteful Brownie of the wood and the crafty Pixie of
the cavern, dimly-remembered traditions of their physical and mental
characteristics. Indeed it is not impossible that their blood may
still be found in the remoter corners of our land, whither they were
pushed back by the higher civilization of the Aryan invaders, before
whom they disappeared by a process in which "miscegenation" may well
have played no small part. But disappear they did, leaving behind them
no more traces than their flint arrow-heads and axes (a few of these
being of jadite, which must have come from China or thereabouts),
together with their oblong sepulchral barrows, from some of which the
earth has weathered away, so that the massive stones imbedded in it
as the last home of the deceased stand exposed as a "dolmen" or
"cromlech." But an appreciable number of the earthworks which stud our
hill-tops, and are popularly called "Roman" or "British" camps, really
belong to this older race. Such are "Cony Castle" in Dorset, and the
fortifications along the Axe in Devon.

B. 3.--During the neolithic stage of their development the Ugrians
were acquainted with but one metal, gold, and some of their stone
weapons and implements are thus ornamented. For gold, being at
once the most beautiful, the most incorruptible, the most easily
recognizable, and the most easily worked of metals, is everywhere
found as used by man long before any other. But before the Ugrian
races vanish they had learnt to use bronze, which shows them to
have discovered the properties not only of gold, but of both tin and
copper. All three metals were doubtless obtained from the streams of
the West. They had also become proficients, as their sepulchral urns
show, in the manufacture of pottery. They could weave, moreover, both
linen and woollen being known, and had passed far beyond the mere

B. 4.--The race, indeed, which could erect Avebury and Stonehenge,
as we may safely say was done by this people,[9] must have possessed
engineering skill of a very high order, and no little accuracy of
astronomical observation. For the mighty "Sarsen" stones have all been
brought from a distance,[10] and the whole vast circles are built on a
definite astronomical plan; while so careful is the orientation that,
at the summer solstice, the disc of the rising sun, as seen from the
"altar" of Stonehenge, appears to be poised exactly on the summit of
one of the chief megaliths (now known as "The Friar's Heel"). From
this it would seem that the builders were Sun-worshippers; and amongst
the earliest reports of Britain current in the Greek world we find
the fame of the "great round temple" dedicated to Apollo. But no Latin
author mentions it; so that it is doubtful whether it was ever used
by the Aryan, or at least by the Brythonic, immigrants. These brought
their own worship and their own civilization with them, and all that
was highest in Ugrian civilization and worship faded before them, such
Ugrians as remained having degenerated to a far lower level when first
we meet with them in history.


Aryan immigrants--Gael and Briton--Earliest classical
nomenclature--British Isles--Albion--Ierne--Cassiterides--Phoenician
tin trade _viâ_ Cadiz.

C. 1.--How or when the first swarms of the Aryan migration reached
Britain is quite unknown.[11] But they undoubtedly belonged to the
Celtic branch of that family, and to the Gaelic (Gadhelic or Goidelic)
section of the branch, which still holds the Highlands of Scotland and
forms the bulk of the population of Ireland. By the 4th century
B.C. this section was already beginning to be pressed northwards and
westwards by the kindred Britons (or Brythons) who followed on their
heels; for Aristotle (or a disciple of his) knows our islands as "the
Britannic[12] Isles." That the Britons were in his day but new comers
may be argued from the fact that he speaks of Great Britain by the
name of _Albion_, a Gaelic designation subsequently driven northwards
along with those who used it. In its later form _Albyn_ it long
remained as loosely equivalent to North Britain, and as _Albany_ it
still survives in a like connection. Ireland Aristotle calls _Ierne_,
the later Ivernia or Hibernia; a word also found in the Argonautic
poems ascribed to the mythical Orpheus, and composed probably by
Onomacritus about 350 B.C., wherein the Argo is warned against
approaching "the Iernian islands, the home of dark and noisome
mischief." This is the passage familiar to the readers of Kingsley's

C. 2.--Aristotle's work does no more than mention our islands, as
being, like Ceylon, not pelagic, but oceanic. To early classical
antiquity, it must be remembered, the Ocean was no mere sea, but a
vast and mysterious river encircling the whole land surface of the
earth. Its mighty waves, its tides, its furious currents, all made it
an object of superstitious horror. To embark upon it was the height
of presumption; and even so late as the time of Claudius we shall find
the Roman soldiers feeling that to do so, even for the passage of the
Channel, was "to leave the habitable world."

C. 3.--But while the ancients dreaded the Ocean, they knew also that
its islands alone were the source of one of the most precious and
rarest of their metals. Before iron came into general use (and the
difficulty of smelting it has everywhere made it the last metal to
do so), tin had a value all its own. It was the only known substance
capable of making, along with copper, an alloy hard enough for cutting
purposes--the "bronze" which has given its name to one entire Age of
human development. It was thus all but a necessary of life, and was
eagerly sought for as amongst the choicest objects of traffic.

C. 4.--The Phoenicians, the merchant princes of the dawn of history,
succeeded, with true mercantile instinct, in securing a monopoly of
this trade, by being the first to make their way to the only spots
in the world where tin is found native, the Malay region in the East,
Northern Spain and Cornwall in the West. That tin was known amongst
the Greeks by its Sanscrit name _Kastira_[14] ([Greek: kassiteros])
shows that the Eastern source was the earliest to be tapped. But the
Western was that whence the supply flowed throughout the whole of the
classical ages; and, as the stream-tin of the Asturian mountains seems
to have been early exhausted, the name _Cassiterides_, the Tin
Lands, came to signify exclusively the western peninsula of Britain.
Herodotus, in the 5th century B.C., knew this name, but, as he frankly
confesses, nothing but the name.[15] For the whereabouts of this El
Dorado, and the way to it, was a trade secret most carefully kept by
the Phoenician merchants of Cadiz, who alone held the clue. So jealous
were they of it that long afterwards, when the alternative route
through Gaul had already drawn away much of its profitableness, we
read of a Phoenician captain purposely wrecking his ship lest a Roman
vessel in sight should follow to the port, and being indemnified by
the state for his loss.


Discoveries of Pytheas--Greek tin trade _viâ_ Marseilles--Trade
routes--Ingots--Coracles--Earliest British coins--Lead-mining.

D. 1.--But contemporary with Aristotle lived the great geographer
Pytheas; whose works, unfortunately, we know only by the fragmentary
references to them in later, and frequently hostile, authors, such
as Strabo, who dwell largely on his mistakes, and charge him with
misrepresentation. In fact, however, he seems to have been both an
accurate and truthful observer, and a discoverer of the very first
order. Starting from his native city Massilia (Marseilles), he passed
through the Straits of Gibraltar and traced the coast-line of Europe
to Denmark (visiting Britain on his way), and perhaps even on into the
Baltic.[16] The shore of Norway (which he called, as the natives still
call it, Norgé) he followed till within the Arctic Circle, as his
mention of the midnight sun shows, and then struck across to Scotland;
returning, apparently by the Irish Sea, to Bordeaux and so home
overland. This truly wonderful voyage he made at the public charge,
with a view to opening new trade routes, and it seems to have
thoroughly answered its purpose. Henceforward the Phoenician monopoly
was broken, and a constant stream of traffic in the precious tin
passed between Britain and Marseilles.[17]

D. 2.--The route was kept as secret as possible; Polybius tells
us that the Massiliots, when interrogated by one of the Scipios,
professed entire ignorance of Britain; but Pytheas (as quoted by his
contemporary Timaeus, as well as by later writers) states that the
metal was brought by coasters to a tidal island, _Ictis_, whence it
was shipped for Gaul. This island was six days' sail from the tin
diggings, and can scarcely be any but Thanet. St. Michael's Mount, now
the only tidal island on the south coast, was anciently part of the
mainland; a fact testified to by the forest remains still seen around
it. Nor could it be six days' sail from the tin mines. The Isle of
Wight, again, to which the name Ictis or Vectis would seem to point,
can never have been tidal at this date. But Thanet undoubtedly was
so in mediaeval times, and may well have been so for ages, while its
nearness to the Continent would recommend it to the Gallic merchants.
Indeed Pytheas himself probably selected it on this account for his
new emporium.

D. 3.--In his day, as we have seen, the tin reached this destination
by sea; but in the time of the later traveller Posidonius[18] it came
in wagons, probably by that track along the North Downs now known as
the "Pilgrims' Way." The chalk furnished a dry and open road, much
easier than the swamps and forests of the lower ground. Further
west the route seems to have been _viâ_ Launceston, Exeter, Honiton,
Ilchester, Salisbury, Winchester, and Alton; an ancient track often
traceable, and to be seen almost in its original condition near
"Alfred's Tower," in Somerset, where it is known as "The Hardway."
And this long land transit argues a considerable degree of political
solidarity throughout the south of the island. The tale of Posidonius
is confirmed by Caesar's statement that tin reached Kent "from the
interior," _i.e._ by land. It was obtained at first from the streams
of Dartmoor and Cornwall, where abundant traces of ancient washings
are visible, and afterwards by mining, as now. And when smelted it
was made up into those peculiar ingots which still meet the eye in
Cornwall, and whose shape seems never to have varied from the
earliest times. Posidonius, who visited Cornwall, compares them to
knuckle-bones[19] [Greek: astrhagaloi]

D. 4.--The vessels which thus coasted from the Land's End to the South
Foreland are described as on the pattern of coracles, a very light
frame-work covered with hides. It seems almost incredible that
sea-going craft could have been thus constructed; yet not only is
there overwhelming testimony to the fact throughout the whole history
of Roman Britain, but such boats are still in use on the wild rollers
which beat upon the west coast of Ireland, and are found able to live
in seas which would be fatal to anything more rigidly built. For the
surf boats in use at Madras a similar principle is adopted, not a nail
entering into their construction. They can thus face breakers which
would crush an ordinary boat to pieces. This method of ship-building
was common all along the northern coast of Europe for ages.[20] Nor
were these coracles only used for coasting. As time went on, the
Britons boldly struck straight across from Cornwall to the Continent,
and both the Seine and the Loire became inlets for tin into Gaul, thus
lessening the long land journey--not less than thirty days--which was
required, as Polybius tells us, to convey it from the Straits of Dover
to the Rhone. (This journey, it may be noted, was made not in wagons,
as through Britain, but on pack-horses.)

D. 5.--Thus it reached Marseilles; and that the trade was founded
by the Massiliot Pytheas is borne testimony to by the early British
coins, which are all modelled on the classical currency of his age.
The medium in universal circulation then, current everywhere, like the
English sovereign now, was the Macedonian stater, newly introduced by
Philip, a gold coin weighing 133 grains, bearing on the one side
the laureated head of Apollo, on the other a figure of Victory in a
chariot. Of this all known Gallic and British coins (before the Roman
era) are more or less accurate copies. The earliest as yet found in
Britain do not date, according to Sir John Evans, our great authority
on this subject,[21] from before the 2nd century B.C. They are all
dished coins, rudely struck, and rapidly growing ruder as time goes
on. The head early becomes a mere congeries of dots and lines, but one
horse of the chariot team remains recognizable to quite the end of the

D. 6.--These coins have been found in very large numbers, and of
various types, according to the locality in which they were struck.
They occur as far north as Edinburgh; but all seem to have been issued
by one or other of the tribes in the south and east of the island, who
learnt the idea of minting from the Gauls. Whence the gold of which
the coins are made came from is a question not yet wholly solved:
surface gold was very probably still obtainable at that date from the
streams of Wales and Cornwall. But it was long before any other metal
was used in the British mints. Not till after the invasion of Julius
Caesar do we find any coins of silver or bronze issued, though he
testifies to their existence. The use of silver shows a marked
advance in metallurgy, and is probably connected with the simultaneous
development of the lead-mining in the Mendip Hills, of which about
this time we first begin to find traces.


Pytheas trustworthy--His notes on Britain--Agricultural
tribes--Barns--Manures--Dene Holes--Mead--Beer--Parched
corn--Pottery--Mill-stones--Villages--Cattle--Pastoral tribes--Savage
tribes--Cannibalism--Polyandry--Beasts of chase--Forest trees--British
clothing and arms--Sussex iron.

E. 1.--The trustworthiness of Pytheas is further confirmed by the
astronomical observations which he records. He notices, for example,
that the longest day in Britain contains "nineteen equinoctial hours."
Amongst the ancients, it must be remembered, an "hour," in common
parlance, signified merely the twelfth part, on any given day, of
the time between sunrise and sunset, and thus varied according to
the season. But the standard hour for astronomical purposes was the
twelfth part of the equinoctial day, when the sun rises 6 a.m. and
sets 6 p.m., and therefore corresponded with our own. Now the longest
day at Greenwich is actually not quite seventeen hours, but in the
north of Britain it comes near enough to the assertion of Pytheas to
bear out his tale. We are therefore justified in giving credence
to his account of what he saw in our country, the earliest that we
possess. He tells us that, in some parts at least, the inhabitants
were far from being mere savages. They were corn-growers (wheat,
barley, and millet being amongst their crops), and also cultivated
"roots," fruit trees, and other vegetables. What specially struck him
was that, "for lack of clear sunshine[22]," they threshed out their
corn, not in open threshing-floors, as in Mediterranean lands, but in

E. 2.--From other sources we know that these old British farmers were
sufficiently scientific agriculturalists to have invented _wheeled_
ploughs,[23] and to use a variety of manures; various kinds of
mast, loam, and chalk in particular. This treatment of the soil was,
according to Pliny, a British invention[24] (though the Greeks of
Megara had also tried it), and he thinks it worth his while to give
a long description of the different clays in use and the methods of
their application. That most generally employed was chalk dug out from
pits some hundred feet in depth, narrow at the mouth, but widening
towards the bottom. [_Petitur ex alto, in centenos pedes actis
plerumque puteis, ore angustatis; intus spatiante vena_.]

E. 3.--Here we have an exact picture of those mysterious excavations
some of which still survive to puzzle antiquaries under the name of
_Dene Holes_. They are found in various localities; Kent, Surrey, and
Essex being the richest. In Hangman's Wood, near Grays, in Essex,
a small copse some four acres in extent, there are no fewer than
seventy-two Dene Holes, as close together as possible, their entrance
shafts being not above twenty yards apart. These shafts run vertically
downwards, till the floor of the pit is from eighty to a hundred feet
below the surface of the ground. At the bottom the shaft widens out
into a vaulted chamber some thirty feet across, from which radiate
four, five, or even six lateral crypts, whose dimensions are usually
about thirty feet in length, by twelve in width and height. When the
shafts are closely clustered, the lateral crypts of one will extend to
within a few feet of those belonging to its neighbours, but in no
case do they communicate with them (though the recent excavations of
archaeologists have thus connected whole groups of Dene Holes). Many
theories have been elaborated to account for their existence, but
the data are conclusive against their having been either habitations,
tombs, store-rooms, or hiding-places; and, in 1898, Mr. Charles
Dawson, F.S.A., pointed out that, in Sussex, chalk and limestone
are still quarried by means of identically such pits. The chalk so
procured is found a far more efficacious dressing for the soil than
that which occurs on the surface, and moreover is more cheaply got
than by carting from even a mile's distance. At the present day, as
soon as a pit is exhausted (that is as soon as the diggers dare make
their chambers no larger for fear of a downfall), another is sunk hard
by, and the first filled up with the _débris_ from the second. In the
case of the Dene Holes, this _débris_ must have been required for some
other purpose; and to this fact alone we owe their preservation. It
is probable that the celebrated cave at Royston in Hertfordshire
was originally dug for this purpose, though afterwards used as a

E. 4.--Pytheas is also our authority for saying that bee-keeping was
known to the Britons of his day;[25] a drink made of wheat and honey
being one of their intoxicants. This method of preparing mead (or
metheglin) is current to this day among our peasantry. Another drink
was made from barley, and this, he tells us, they called [Greek:
koyrmi], the word still used in Erse for beer, under the form _cuirm_.
Dioscorides the physician, who records this (and who may perhaps have
tried our national beverage, as he lived shortly after the Claudian
conquest of Britain), pronounces it "head-achy, unwholesome, and
injurious to the nerves": [[Greek: kephalalges esti kai kakhochymon,
kai tou neurou blaptikon]].

E. 5.--Not all the tribes of Britain, however, were at this level of
civilization. Threshing in barns was only practised by those highest
in development, the true Britons of the south and east. The Gaelic
tribes beyond them, so far as they were agricultural at all, stored
the newly-plucked ears of corn in their underground dwellings, day by
day taking out and dressing [[Greek: katergazomenous]] what was needed
for each meal. The method here referred to is doubtless that described
as still in use at the end of the 17th century in the Hebrides.[26] "A
woman, sitting down, takes a handful of corn, holding it by the stalks
in her left hand, and then sets fire to the ears, which are presently
in a flame. She has a stick in her right hand, which she manages very
dexterously, beating off the grains at the very instant when the husk
is quite burnt.... The corn may be thus dressed, winnowed, ground, and
baked, within an hour of reaping."

When kept, it may usually have been stored, like that of Robinson
Crusoe, in baskets;[27] for basket-making was a peculiarly British
industry, and Posidonius found "British baskets" in use on the
Continent. But probably it was also hoarded--again in Crusoe
fashion--in the large jars of coarse pottery which are occasionally
found on British sites. These, and the smaller British vessels, are
sometimes elaborately ornamented with devices of no small artistic
merit. But all are hand-made, the potter's wheel being unknown in
pre-Roman days.

E. 6.--Nor does the grinding of corn, even in hand-mills, seem to have
been universal till the Roman era, the earlier British method being
to bruise the grain in a mortar.[28] Without the resources of
civilization it is not easy to deal with stones hard enough for
satisfactory millstones. We find that the Romans, when they came,
mostly selected for this use the Hertfordshire "pudding-stone," a
conglomerate of the Eocene period crammed with rolled flint pebbles,
sometimes also bringing over Niederendig lava from the Rhine valley,
and burr-stone from the Paris basin for their querns.

E. 7.--These tribes are described as living in cheap [[Greek:
euteleis]] dwellings, constructed of reeds or logs, yet spoken of as
subterranean.[29] Light has been thrown on this apparent contradiction
by the excavation in 1889 of the site of a British village at
Barrington in Cambridgeshire. Within a space of about sixty yards
each way, bounded by a fosse some six feet wide and four deep, were
a collection of roughly circular pits, distributed in no recognizable
system, from twelve to twenty feet in diameter and from two to four in
depth. They were excavated in the chalky soil, and from each a small
drainage channel ran for a yard or two down the gentle slope on which
the settlement stood. Obviously a superstructure of thatch and wattle
would convert these pits into quite passable wigwams, corresponding to
the description of Pytheas. This whole village was covered by
several feet of top-soil in which were found numerous interments
of Anglo-Saxon date. It had seemingly perished by fire, a layer of
incinerated matter lying at the bottom of each pit.

E. 8.--The domestic cattle of the Britons were a diminutive breed,
smaller than the existing Alderney, with abnormally developed
foreheads (whence their scientific name _Bos Longifrons_). Their
remains, the skulls especially, are found in every part of the land,
with no trace, in pre-Roman times, of any other breed. The gigantic
wild ox of the British forests (_Bos Primigenius_) seems never to have
been tamed by the Celtic tribes, who, very possibly, like the Romans
after them, may have brought their own cattle with them into the
island. According to Professor Rolleston the small size of the breed
is due to the large consumption of milk by the breeders. (He notes
that the cattle of Burmah and Hindostan are identically the same
stock, and that in Burmah, where comparatively little milk is used,
they are of large size. In Hindostan, on the contrary, where milk
forms the staple food of the population, the whole breed is stunted,
no calf having, for ages, been allowed its due supply of nutriment.)
The Professor also holds that these small oxen, together with the
goat, sheep, horse, dog, and swine (of the Asiatic breed), were
introduced into Britain by the Ugrian races in the Neolithic Age; and
that the pre-Roman Britons had no domestic fowls except geese.[30]

E. 9.--If these considerations are of weight they would point to an
excessive dependence on milk even amongst the agricultural tribes of
Britain. And there were others, as we know, who had not got beyond the
pastoral stage of human development. These, as Strabo declares, had no
idea of husbandry, "nor even sense enough to make cheese, though milk
they have in plenty."[31] And some of the non-Aryan hordes seem to
have been mere brutal savages, practising cannibalism and having wives
in common. Both practices are mentioned by the latest as well as the
earliest of our classical authorities. Jerome says that in Gaul
he himself saw Attacotti (the primitive inhabitants of Galloway)
devouring human flesh, and refers to their sexual relations, which
more probably imply some system of polyandry, such as still prevails
in Thibet, than mere promiscuous intercourse. Traces of this system
long remained in the rule of "Mutter-recht," which amongst several of
the more remote septs traced inheritance invariably through the mother
and not the father.

E. 10.--These savages knew neither corn nor cattle. Like the "Children
of the Mist" in the pages of Walter Scott,[32] their boast was "to own
no lord, receive no land, take no hire, give no stipend, build no hut,
enclose no pasture, sow no grain; to take the deer of the forest
for their flocks and herds," and to eke out this source of supply by
preying upon their less barbarous neighbours "who value flocks and
herds above honour and freedom." Lack of game, however, can seldom
have driven them to this; for the forests of ancient Britain seem to
have swarmed with animal life. Red deer, roebuck, wild oxen, and wild
swine were in every brake, beaver and waterfowl in every stream;
while wolf, bear, and wild-cat shared with man in taking toll of their
lives. The trees of these forests, it may be mentioned, were (as in
some portions of Epping Forest now) almost wholly oak, ash, holly,
and yew; the beech, chestnut, elm, and even the fir, being probably
introduced in later ages.

E. 11.--Of the British tribes, however, almost none, even amongst
these wild woodlanders, were the naked savages, clothed only in blue
paint, that they are commonly imagined to have been. On the contrary,
they could both weave and spin; and the tartan, with its variegated
colours, is described by Caesar's contemporary, Diodorus Siculus, as
their distinctive dress, just as one might speak of Highlanders at
the present day.[33] Pliny mentions that all the colours used were
obtained from native herbs and lichens,[34] as is still the case in
the Hebrides, where sea-weed dyes are mostly used. Woad was used for
tattooing the flesh with blue patterns, and a decoction of beechen
ashes for dyeing the hair red if necessary, whenever that colour was
fashionable.[35] The upper classes wore collars and bracelets of gold,
and necklaces of glass and amber beads.

E. 12.--This last item suggests an interesting question as to whence
came the vast quantities of amber thus used. None is now found upon
our shores, except a very occasional fragment on the East Anglian
beaches. But the British barrows bear abundant testimony to its
having been in prehistoric times the commonest of all materials for
ornamental purposes--far commoner than in any other country. Beads
are found by the myriad--a single Wiltshire grave furnished a
thousand--mostly of a discoid shape, and about an inch in diameter.
Larger plates occasionally appear, and in one case (in Sussex) a cup
formed from a solid block of exceptional size. If all this came from
the Baltic, the main existing source of our amber,[36] it argues
a considerable trade, of which we find no mention in any extant
authority. Pytheas witnesses to the amber of the Baltic, and says
nothing, so far as we know, of British amber. But, according to
Pliny,[37] his contemporary Solinus speaks of it as a British product;
and at the Christian era it was apparently a British export.[38] The
supply of amber as a jetsom is easily exhausted in any given district;
miles of Baltic coast rich in it within mediaeval times are now quite
barren; and the same thing has probably taken place in Britain. The
rapid wearing away of our amber-bearing Norfolk shore is not unlikely
to have been the cause of this change; the submarine fir-groves of the
ancient littoral, with their resinous exudations, having become silted
over far out at sea.[39] The old British amber sometimes
contained flies. Dioscorides[40] applies to it the epithet [Greek:
pterugophoron] ["fly-bearing"].

E. 13.--The chiefs were armed with large brightly-painted shields,[41]
plumed (and sometimes crested) helmets, and cuirasses of leather,
bronze, or chain-mail. The national weapons of offence were darts,
pikes (sometimes with prongs--the origin of Britannia's trident), and
broadswords; bows and arrows being more rarely used. Both Diodorus
Siculus [v. 30] and Strabo [iv. 197] describe this equipment, and
specimens of all the articles have, at one place or another, been
found in British interments.[42] The arms are often richly worked and
ornamented, sometimes inlaid with enamel, sometimes decorated with
studs of red coral from the Mediterranean.[43] The shields, being of
wood, have perished, but their circular bosses of iron still remain.
The chariots, which formed so special a feature of British militarism,
were also of wood, painted, like the shields, and occasionally
ironclad.[44] The iron may have been from the Sussex fields. We know
that in Caesar's day rings of this metal were one of the forms of
British currency, so that before his time the Britons must have
attained to the smelting of this most intractable of metals.


Celtic types--"Roy" and "Dhu"--Gael--Silurians--Loegrians--Basque
peoples--Shifting of clans--Constitutional disturbances--Monarchy
--Oligarchy--Demagogues--First inscribed coins.

F. 1.--Our earliest records point to the existence among the Celtic
tribes in Britain of the two physical types still to be found amongst
them; the tall, fair, red-haired, blue-eyed Gael, whom his clansmen
denominate "Roy" (the Red), and the dark complexion, hair and eyes,
usually associated with shorter stature, which go with the designation
"Dhu" (the Black). Rob Roy and Roderick Dhu are familiar illustrations
of this nomenclature. In classical times these types were much less
intermingled than now, and were characteristic of separate races. The
former prevailed almost exclusively amongst the true Britons of the
south and east, and the Gaelic septs of the north, while the latter
was found throughout the west, in Devon, Cornwall, and Wales. The
Silurians, of Glamorgan, are specially noted as examples of this
"black" physique, and a connection has been imagined between them and
the Basques of Iberia, an idea originating with Strabo.

F. 2.--That a good deal of non-Aryan blood was, and is, to be found
in both regions is fairly certain; but any closer correlation must
be held at any rate not proven. For though Strabo asserts that the
Silurians differ not only in looks but in language from the Britons,
while in both resembling the Iberians, it is probable that he derives
his information from Pytheas four centuries earlier. At that date
non-Aryan speech may very possibly still have lingered on in the West,
but there is no trace whatever to be found of anything of the sort in
the nomenclature of the district during or since the Roman occupation.
All is unmitigated Celtic. We may, however, possibly find a
confirmation of Strabo's view in the word _Logris_ applied to Southern
Britain by the Celtic bards of the Arturian cycle. The word is said
to be akin to _Liger_ (Loire), and tradition traced the origin of the
Loegrians to the southern banks of that river, which were undoubtedly
held by Iberian (Basque) peoples at least to the date when Pytheas
visited those parts. The name, indeed, seems to be connected with
that of the Ligurians, a kindred non-Aryan community, surviving, in
historical times, only amongst the Maritime Alps.

F. 3.--It is probable that the status of each clan was continually
shifting; and what little we know of their names and locations,
their rise and their fall, presents an even more kaleidoscopic
phantasmagoria than the mediaeval history of the Scotch Highlands,
or the principalities of Wales, or the ever-changing septs of ancient
Ireland. Tribes absorbed or destroyed by conquering tribes, tribes
confederating with others under a fresh name, this or that chief
becoming a new eponymous hero,--such is the ceaseless spectacle of
unrest of which the history of ancient Britain gives us glimpses.

F. 4.--By the time that these glimpses become anything like
continuous, things were further complicated by two additional elements
of disturbance. One of these was the continuous influx of new settlers
from Gaul, which was going on throughout the 1st century B.C. Caesar
tells us that the tribes of Kent, Sussex, and Essex were all of the
Belgic stock, and we shall see that the higher politics of his day
were much influenced by the fact that one and the same tribal chief
claimed territorial rights in Gaul and Britain at once; just like so
many of our mediaeval barons. The other was the coincidence that
just at this period the British tribes began to be affected by the
turbulent stage of constitutional development connected, in Greece and
Rome, with the abolition of royalty.

F. 5.--The primitive Aryan community (so far, at least, as the
western branch of the race is concerned) everywhere presents to us the
threefold element of King, Lords, and Commons. The King is supreme,
he reigns by right of birth (though not according to strict
primogeniture), and he not only reigns but governs. Theoretically he
is absolute, but practically can do little without taking counsel with
his Lords, the aristocracy of the tribe, originally an aristocracy
of birth, but constantly tending to become one of wealth. The Commons
gather to ratify the decrees of their betters, with a theoretical
right to dissent (though not to discuss), a right which they seldom or
never at once care and dare to exercise.

F. 6.--In course of time we see that everywhere the supremacy of the
Kings became more and more distasteful to the Aristocracy, and was
everywhere set aside, sometimes by a process of quiet depletion of the
Royal prerogative, sometimes by a revolution; the change being, in
the former case, often informal, with the name, and sometimes even
the succession, of the eviscerated office still lingering on.
The executive then passed to the Lords, and the state became an
oligarchical Republic, such as we see in Rome after the expulsion of
the Tarquins. Next came the rise of the Lower Orders, who insisted
with ever-increasing urgency on claiming a share in the direction of
politics, and in every case with ultimate success. Almost invariably
the leaders who headed this uprising of the masses grasped for
themselves in the end the supreme power, and as irresponsible
"Dictators," "Tyrants," or "Emperors" took the place of the old
constitutional Kings.

F. 7.--Such was the cycle of events both in Rome and in the Greek
commonwealths; though in the latter it ran its course within a few
generations, whilst amongst the law-abiding Romans it was a matter of
centuries. And the pages of Caesar bear abundant testimony to the fact
that in his day the Gallic tribes were all in the state of turmoil
which mostly attended the "_Regifugium_" period of development. Some
were still under their old Kings; some, like the Nervii, had developed
a Senatorial government; in some the Commons had set up "Tyrants" of
their own. It was this general unrest which contributed in no small
degree to the Roman conquest of Gaul. And the same state of things
seems to have been begun in Britain also. The earliest inscribed
British coins bear, some of them the names of Kings and Princes,
others those of peoples, others again designations which seem to point
to Tyrants. To the first class belong those of Commius, Tincommius,
Tasciovan, Cunobelin, etc.; to the second those of the Iceni and the
Cassi; to the last the northern mintage of Volisius, a potentate
of the Parisii, who calls himself Domnoverus, which, according to
Professor Rhys,[45] literally signifies "Demagogue."


Clans at Julian invasion--Permanent natural
boundaries--Population--Celtic settlements--"Duns"--Maiden Castle.

G. 1.--The earliest of these inscribed coins, however, take us
no further back than the Julian invasion; and it is to Caesar's
Commentaries that we are indebted for the first recorded names of any
British tribes. It is no part of his design to give any regular list
of the clans or their territories; he merely makes incidental mention
of such as he had to do with. Thus we learn of the four nameless
clans who occupied Kent (a region which has kept its territorial
name unchanged from the days of Pytheas), and also of the Atrebates,
Cateuchlani, Trinobantes, Cenimagni, Segontiaci, Ancalites, Bibroci,
and Cassi.

G. 2.--To the localities held by these tribes Caesar bears no direct
evidence; but from his narrative, as well as from local remains and
later references, we know that the Trinobantes possessed Essex, and
the Cenimagni (i.e. "the Great Iceni" as they were still called,[46]
though their power was on the wane), East Anglia; while the
Cateuchlani, already beginning to be known as the Cassivellauni (or
Cattivellauni), presumably from their heroic chieftain Caswallon (or
Cadwallon),[47] corresponded roughly to the later South Mercians,
between the Thames and the Nene. The Segontiaci, Ancalites, Bibroci,
and Cassi were less considerable, and must evidently have been
situated on the marches between their larger neighbours. The name of
the Cassi may still, perhaps, cling to their old home, in the _Cashio_
Hundred and _Cassiobury_, near Watford; while conjecture finds traces
of the Ancalites in _Henley_, and of the Bibroci in _Bray_, on either
side of the Thames.

G. 3.--The Atrebates, who play a not unimportant part (as will be
seen in the next chapter) in Caesar's connection with Britain, were
apparently in possession of the whole southern bank of the Thames,
from its source right down to London--the river then, as in
Anglo-Saxon times, being a tribal boundary throughout its entire
length. This would make the Bibroci a sub-tribe of the Atrebatian
Name, and also the Segontiaci, if Henry of Huntingdon (writing in the
12th century with access to various sources of information now lost)
is right in identifying Silchester, the Roman _Calleva_, with their
local stronghold Caer Segent.

G. 4.--But the whole attempt to locate accurately any but the chiefest
tribes found by the Romans in Britain is too conjectural to be
worth the infinite labour that has been expended upon the subject by
antiquaries. All we can say with certainty is that forest and fen
must have cut up the land into a limited number of fairly recognizable
districts, each so far naturally separated from the rest as to have
been probably a separate or quasi-separate political entity also.
Thus, not only was the Thames a line of demarcation, only passable
at a few points, from its estuary nearly to the Severn Sea, but the
southern regions cut off by it were parted by Nature into five main
districts. Sussex was hemmed in by the great forest of Anderida, and
that of Selwood continued the line from Southampton to Bristol.
Kent was isolated by the Romney marshes and the wild country about
Tunbridge, while the western peninsula was a peninsula indeed when
the sea ran up to beyond Glastonbury. In this region, then, the later
Wessex, we find five main tribes; the men of Kent, the Regni south of
the Weald, the Atrebates along the Thames, the Belgae on the Wiltshire
Avon, and the Damnonii of Devon and Cornwall, with (perhaps) a
sub-tribe of their Name, the Durotriges, in Dorsetshire.

G. 5.--Like the south, the eastern, western, and northern districts of
England were cut off from the centre by natural barriers. The Fens of
Cambridgeshire and the marshes of the Lea valley, together with the
dense forest along the "East Anglian" range, enclosed the east in
a ring fence; within which yet another belt of woodland divided the
Trinobantes of Essex from the Iceni of Norfolk and Suffolk. The Severn
and the Dee isolated what is now Wales, a region falling naturally
into two sub-divisions; South Wales being held by the Silurians and
their Demetian subjects, North Wales by the Ordovices. The lands
north of the Humber, again, were barred off from the south by barriers
stretching from sea to sea; the Humber itself on the one hand, the
Mersey estuary on the other, thrusting up marshes to the very foot of
the wild Pennine moorlands between. And the whole of this vast region
seems to have been under the Brigantes, who held the great plain of
York, and exercised more or less of a hegemony over the Parisians
of the East Riding, the Segontii of Lancashire, and the Otadini,
Damnonii, and Selgovae between the Tyne and the Forth. Finally,
the Midlands, parcelled up by the forests of Sherwood, Needwood,
Charnwood, and Arden, into quarters, found space for the Dobuni in the
Severn valley (to the west of the Cateuchlani), for the Coritani east
of the Trent, and for their westward neighbours the Cornavii.[48]

G. 6.--All these tribes are given in Ptolemy's geography, but only a
few, such as the Iceni, the Silurians, and the Brigantes, meet us
in actual history; whilst, of them all, the Damnonian name alone
reappears after the fall of the Roman dominion. Thus the accepted
allotment of tribal territory is largely conjectural. North of the
Forth all is conjecture pure and simple, so far as the location of
the various Caledonian sub-clans is concerned. We only know that there
were about a dozen of them; the Cornavii, Carini, Carnonacae,
Cerones, Decantae, Epidii, Horestae, Lugi, Novantae, Smertae, Taexali,
Vacomagi, and Vernicomes. Some of these may be alternative names.

G. 7.--The practical importance of the above-mentioned natural
divisions of the island is testified to by the abiding character of
the corresponding political divisions. The resemblance which at once
strikes the eye between the map of Roman and Saxon Britain is no mere
coincidence. Physical considerations brought about the boundaries
between the Roman "provinces" and the Anglo-Saxon principalities
alike. Thus a glance will show that Britannia Prima, Britannia
Secunda, Maxima Caesariensis, and Flavia Caesariensis correspond to
the later Wessex, Wales, Northumbria, and Mercia (with its dependency
East Anglia).[49] And even the sub-divisions remained approximately
the same. In Anglo-Saxon times, for example, the Midlands were still
divided into the same four tribal territories; the North Mercians
holding that of the British Cornavii, the South Mercians that of the
Dobuni, the Middle Angles that of the Coritani, and the South Angles
that of the Cateuchlani. So also the Icenian kingdom, with its old
boundaries, became that of the East Angles, and the Trinobantian that
of the East Saxons.

G. 8.--What the entire population of Britain may have numbered at the
Roman Conquest is, again, purely a matter of guess-work. But it may
well have been not very different in amount from what it was at the
Norman Conquest, when the entries in Domesday roughly show that the
whole of England (south of the Humber) was inhabited about as thickly
as the Lake District at the present day, and contained some two
million souls. The primary hills, and the secondary plateaux, where
now we find the richest corn lands of the whole country, were in
pre-Roman times covered with virgin forest. But in the river valleys
above the level of the floods were to be found stretches of good open
plough land, and the chalk downs supplied excellent grazing. Where
both were combined, as in the valleys of the Avon and Wily near
Salisbury, and that of the Frome near Dorchester, we have the ideal
site for a Celtic settlement. In such places we accordingly find the
most conspicuous traces of the prehistoric Briton; the round barrows
which mark the burial-places of his chiefs, and the vast earthworks
with which he crowned the most defensible _dun_, or height, in his

G. 9.--These fortified British _duns_ are to be seen all over England.
Sometimes they have become Roman or mediaeval towns, as at Old Sarum;
sometimes they are still centres of population, as at London, Lincoln,
and Exeter; and sometimes, as at Bath and Dorchester, they remain
still as left by their original constructors. For they were designed
to be usually untenanted; not places to dwell in, but camps of refuge,
whither the neighbouring farmers and their cattle might flee when in
danger from a hostile raid. The lack of water in many of them shows
that they could never have been permanently occupied either in war or
peace.[50] Perhaps the best remaining example is Maiden[51] Castle,
which dominates Dorchester, being at once the largest and the most
untouched by later ages. Here three huge concentric ramparts, nearly
three miles in circuit, gird in a space of about fifty acres on a
gentle swell of the chalk ridge above the modern town by the river. A
single tortuous entrance, defended by an outwork, gives access to the
levelled interior. All, save the oaken palisades which once topped
each round of the barrier, remains as it was when first constructed,
looking down, now as then, on the spot where the population for whose
benefit it was made dwelt in time of peace. For English Dorchester is
the British town whose name the Romans, when they raised the square
ramparts which still encircle it, transliterated into Durnovaria.
Durnovaria in turn became, on Anglo-Saxon lips, Dornwara-ceaster,
Dorn-ceaster, and finally Dorchester.

G. 10.--We have already, on physical grounds, assigned these
Durotriges to the Damnonian Name. There were certainly fewer natural
obstacles between them and the men of Devon to the west than between
them and the Belgae to the northward. Caesar, however, distinctly
states that the Belgic power extended to the coast line, so the
Britons of the Frome valley may have been conquered by them. Or the
Durotriges may be a Belgic tribe after all. For, as we have pointed
out, our evidence is of the scantiest, and there is every reason
to suppose that the era of the Roman invasion was one of incessant
political confusion in the land.


Religious state of Britain--Illustrated by
Deities--Mistletoe--Sacred herbs--"Ovum Anguinum"--Suppression of
Druidism--Druidism and Christianity.

H. 1.--The religious state of the country seems to have been in no
less confusion than its political condition. The surviving "Ugrian"
inhabitants appear to have sunk into mere totemists and fetish
worshippers, like the aboriginal races of India; while the Celtic
tribes were at a loose and early stage of polytheism, with a Pantheon
filled by every possible device, by the adoration of every kind of
natural phenomenon, the sky, the sun, the moon, the stars, the winds
and clouds, the earth and sea, rivers, wells, sacred trees, by the
creation of tribal divinities, gods and goddesses of war, commerce,
healing, and all the congeries of mutually tolerant devotions which
we see in the Brahmanism of to-day. And, as in Brahmanism, all these
devotions were under the shadow of a sacerdotal and prophetic caste,
wielding vast influence, and teaching, esoterically at least, a far
more spiritual religion.

H. 2.--These were the Druids, whose practices and tenets fortunately
excited such attention at Rome that we know more about them by far
than we could collect concerning either Jews or Christians from
classical authors. And though most of our authorities refer to
Druidism as practised in Gaul, yet we have the authority of Caesar for
Britain being the special home and sanctuary of the faith, to which
the Gallic Druids referred as the standard for their practices.[52] We
may safely, therefore, take the pictures given us by him and others,
as supplying a representation of what took place in our land ere the
Romans entered it.

H. 3.--The earliest testimony is that of Julius Caesar himself, in his
well-known sketch of contemporary Druidism ('De Bello Gallico,' vi.
14-20). He tells us that the Druids were the ministers of religion,
the sacrificial priesthood of the nation, the authorized expounders of
the Divine will. All education and jurisprudence was in their hands,
and their sentences of excommunication were universally enforced. The
Gallic Druids were under the dominion of a Primate, who presided at
the annual Chapter of the Order, and was chosen by it; a disputed
election occasionally ending in an appeal to arms. As a rule, however,
Druids were supposed not to shed blood, they were free from all
obligation to military service, and from all taxation of every kind.
These privileges enabled them to recruit their ranks--for they were
not an hereditary caste--from the pick of the national youth, in spite
of the severe discipline of the Druidical novitiate. So great was the
mass of sacred literature required to be committed to memory that a
training of twenty years was sometimes needed. All had to be learnt
orally, for the matter was too sacred to be written down, though
the Druids were well acquainted with writing, and used the Greek
alphabet,[53] if not the Greek language,[54] for secular purposes.
Caesar's own view is that this refusal to allow the inditing of their
sacred books was due to two causes: first, the fear lest the secrets
of the Order should thus leak out, and, secondly, the dread lest
reading should weaken memory, "as, in fact, it generally does." Even
so, amongst the Brahmans there are, to this day, many who can not only
repeat from end to end the gigantic mass of Vedic literature, but who
know by heart also with absolute accuracy the huge and complicated
works of the Sanscrit grammarians.

H. 4.--Caesar further tells us that the Druids taught the doctrine of
transmigration of souls, and that their course of education included
astronomy, geography, physics, and theology. The attributes of their
chief God corresponded, in his view, with those of the Roman Mercury.
Of the minor divinities, one, like Apollo, was the patron of healing;
a second, like Minerva, presided over craft-work; a third, like
Jupiter, was King of Heaven, and a fourth, like Mars, was the
War-god.[55] Their calendar was constructed on the principle that each
night belongs to the day before it (not to that after it, as was
the theory amongst the Mediterranean nations), and they reckoned
all periods of time by nights, not days, as we still do in the word
"fortnight." For this practice they gave the mystical reason that the
Celtic races were the Children of Darkness. At periods of national
or private distress, human sacrifices were in vogue amongst them,
sometimes on a vast scale. "They have images [_simulacra_] of huge
size, whose limbs when enclosed [_contexta_] with wattles, they fill
with living men. The wattles are fired and the men perish amid the
hedge of flame [_circumventi flamma exanimantur homines_]." It
is usually supposed that these _simulacra_ were hollow idols of
basket-work. But such would require to be constructed on an incredible
scale for their limbs to be filled with men; and it is much more
probable that they were spaces traced out upon the ground (like the
Giant on the hill above Cerne Abbas in Dorset), and hedged in with the
wattles to be fired.

H. 5.--From the historian Diodorus Siculus, whose life overlapped
Caesar's, we learn that Druid was a native British name. "There are
certain philosophers and theologians held in great honour whom they
call Druids."[56] Whether this designation is actually of Celtic
derivation is, however, uncertain. Pliny thought it was from the Greek
affected by the Druids and connected with their oak-tree worship.
Professor Rhys mentions that the earliest use of the word in
extant Welsh literature is in the Book of Taliesin, under the form
_Derwyddon_,[57] and that in Irish is to be found the cognate form
_Drui_. But these are as likely to be derived from the Greek [Greek:
_drouides_] as this from them. Diodorus adds that they have mighty
influence, and preside at all sacred rites, "as possessing special
knowledge of the Gods, yea, and being of one speech [[Greek:
homophônôn]] with them." This points to some archaic or foreign
language, possibly Greek, being used in the Druidical ritual. Their
influence, he goes on to say, always makes for peace: "Oft-times, when
hosts be arrayed, and either side charging the one against the other,
yea, when swords are out and spears couched for the onset, will these
men rush between and stay the warriors, charming them to rest [[Greek:
katepasantes]] like so many wild beasts."

H. 6.--With the Druids Diodorus associates two other religiously
influential classes amongst the Britons, the Bards [[Greek: bardos]]
and the Seers [[Greek: manteis]]. The former present the familiar
features of the cosmopolitan minstrel. They sing to harps [[Greek:
organôn tais lurais homoiôn]], both fame and disfame. The latter seem
to have corresponded with the witch-doctors of the Kaffir tribes,
deriving auguries from the dying struggles of their victims
(frequently human), just as the Basuto medicine-men tortured oxen to
death to prognosticate the issue of the war between Great Britain
and the Boers in South Africa. Strabo, in the next generation, also
mentions together these three classes, Bards, Seers [[Greek: Ouateis]
= Vates] and Druids. The latter study natural science and ethics
[[Greek: pros tê phusiologia kai tên êthikên philosophian askousin]].
They teach the immortality of the soul, and believe the Universe to be
eternal, "yet, at the last, fire and water shall prevail."

H. 7.--Pomponius Mela, who wrote shortly before the Claudian conquest
of Britain, says that the Druids profess to know the shape and size of
the world, the movements of the stars, and the will of the Gods. They
teach many secrets in caves and woods, but only to the nobles of
the land. Of this esoteric instruction one doctrine alone has been
permitted to leak out to the common people--that of the immortality of
the soul--and this only because that doctrine was calculated to make
them the braver in battle. In accordance with it, food and the like
was buried with the dead, for the use of the soul. Even a man's debts
were supposed to pass with him to the shades.

H. 8.--Our picture of the Druids is completed by Pliny,[58] writing
shortly after the Claudian conquest. Approaching the subject as a
naturalist he does not mention their psychological tenets, but
gives various highly interesting pieces of information as to their
superstitions with regard to natural objects, especially plants. "The
Druids," he says, "(so they call their Magi) hold nothing so sacred
as the mistletoe and that tree whereon it groweth, if only this be an
oak. Oak-groves, indeed, they choose for their own sake, neither do
they celebrate any sacred rite without oak-leaves, so that they appear
to be called Druids from the Greek word for this tree. Whatsoever
mistletoe, then, groweth on such a tree they hold it for a heaven-sent
sign, and count that tree as chosen by their God himself. Yet but
very rarely is it so found, and, when found, is sought with no small
observance; above all on the sixth day of the moon (which to this
folk is the beginning of months and years alike),[59] and after the
thirtieth year of its age, because it is by then in full vigour of
strength, nor has its half-tide yet come. Hailing it, in their own
tongue, as 'Heal-all,' they make ready beneath the tree, with all due
rites, feast and sacrifice. Then are brought up two bulls of spotless
white, whose horns have never ere this known the yoke. The priest, in
white vestments, climbeth the tree, and with a golden sickle reapeth
the sacred bough, which is caught as it falls in a white robe
[_sagum_]. Then, and not till then, slay they the victims, praying
that their God will prosper this his gift to those on whom he hath
bestowed the same."

H. 9.--A drink made from mistletoe, or possibly the mere insertion of
the branch into drinking water, was held by the Druids, Pliny adds,
as an antidote to every kind of poison. Other herbs had like remedial
properties in their eyes. The fumes of burning "_selago_"[60] were
thus held good for affections of the eyesight, only, however, when
the plant was plucked with due ceremonies. The gatherer must be all
in white, with bare and washen feet, and must hallow himself, ere
starting on his quest, with a devotional partaking of bread and wine
[_sacro facto ... pane vinoque_]. He must by no means cut the sacred
stem with a knife, but pluck it, and that not with bare fingers, but
through the folds of his tunic, his right hand being protruded for
this purpose beneath his left, "in thievish wise" [_velut a furante_].
Another herb, "_samolum_," which grew in marshy places, was of avail
in all diseases both of man and beast. It had to be gathered with the
left hand, and fasting, nor might the gatherer on any account look
back till he reached some runlet [_canali_] in which he crushed his
prize and drank.

H. 10.--Pliny's picture has the interest of having been drawn almost
at the final disappearance of Druidism from the Roman world. For some
reason it was supposed to be, like Christianity, peculiarly opposed
to the genius of Roman civilization, and never came to be numbered
amongst the _religiones licitae_ of the Empire. Augustus forbade the
practice of it to Roman citizens,[61] Tiberius wholly suppressed it in
Gaul,[62] and, in conquering Britain, Claudius crushed it with a
hand of iron. Few pictures in the early history of Britain are more
familiar than the final extirpation of the last of the Druids, when
their sacred island of Mona (Anglesey) was stormed by the Roman
legionaries, and priests and priestesses perished _en masse_ in
the flames of their own altars.[63] Their desperate resistance was
doubtless due to the fact that Rome was the declared and mortal
enemy of their faith. So baneful, indeed, did Druidism come to be
considered, that to hold even with the least of its superstitions
was treated at Rome as a capital offence. Pliny tells us of a Roman
knight, of Gallic birth, who was put to death by Claudius for no other
reason than that of being in possession of a certain stone called
by the Druids a "snake's egg," and supposed to bring good luck in

H. 11.--This stone Pliny himself had seen, and describes it (in his
chapter on the use of eggs) as being like a medium-sized apple, having
a cartilaginous shell covered with small processes like the discs
on the arms of an octopus. This can scarcely have been, as most
commentators suppose, the shell of an echinus (with which Pliny was
well acquainted), even if fossil. His description rather seems to
point to some fossil covered with _ostrea sigillina_, such as are
common in British green-sands. He adds an account of the Druidical
view of its production, how it is the solidified poison of a number of
serpents who put their heads together to eject it, and how, even when
set in gold, it will float, and that against a stream. This "egg," it
will be seen, was from Gaul. The British variant of the superstition
was that the snakes thus formed a ring of poison matter, larger or
smaller according to the number engaged, which solidified into a gem
known as _Glain naidr_, "Adder's glass."[65] The small rings of green
or blue glass, too thick for wear, which are not uncommonly found in
British burial-places, are supposed to represent this gem. So also,
possibly, are the much larger rings of roughly-baked clay which occur
throughout the Roman period. For superstitions die hard, and Gough
assures us that even in 1789 such "adder-beads" or "snake-stones" were
considered "lucky" in Wales and Cornwall, and were still ascribed to
the same source as by the Druids of old.

H. 12.--After its suppression by Claudius, Druidism still lingered
on in Britain beyond the Roman pale, and amid the outlaws of the
Armorican forests in Gaul, but in a much lower form. The least worthy
representatives of the Brahmanic caste in India are those found in
the least civilized regions, whose tendency is to become little better
than sorcerers.[66] And in like manner it is as sorcerers that the
later Druids of Scotland and Ireland meet us in their legendary
encounters with St. Patrick and St. Columba. They are called "The
School of Simon the Druid" (_i.e._ Simon Magus), and a 9th-century
commentary designates Jannes and Jambres as "Druids." But the word did
not wholly lose its higher associations. It is applied to the Wise Men
in an early Welsh hymn on the Epiphany; and in another, ascribed to
Columba himself, the saint goes so far as to say, "Christ, the Son of
God, is my _Druid_."[67]




Caesar and Britain--Breakdown of Roman Republican
institutions--Corruption abroad and at home--Rise of Caesar--Conquest
of Gaul.

A. 1.--If the connection of Britain with Rome is the pivot on which
the whole history of our island turns, it is no less true that the
first connection of Rome with Britain is the pivot whereon all Roman
history depends. For its commencement marks the furthest point reached
in his career of conquest by the man without whom Roman history must
needs have come to a shameful and disastrous end--Julius Caesar.

A. 2.--The old Roman constitution and the old Roman character had
alike proved wholly unequal to meet the strain thrown upon them by the
acquisition of the world-wide empire which they had gained for their
city. Under the stress of the long feud between its Patrician and
Plebeian elements that constitution had developed into an instrument
for the regulation of public affairs, admirably adapted for a
City-state, where each magistrate performs his office under his
neighbour's eye and over his own constituents; constantly amenable
both to public opinion and to the checks provided by law. But it
never contemplated Pro-consuls bearing sway over the unenfranchised
populations of distant Provinces, whence news filtered through to Rome
but slowly, and where such legal checks as a man had to reckon with
were in the hands of a Court far more ready to sympathize with the
oppression of non-voters than to resent it.

A. 3.--And these officials had deteriorated from the old Roman
rectitude, as the Spartan harmosts deteriorated under conditions
exactly similar in the days of the Lacedaemonian supremacy over
Hellas. And, in both cases, the whole national character was dragged
down by the degradation of what we may call the Colonial executive.
Like the Spartan, the Roman of "the brave days of old" was often
stern, and even brutal, towards his enemies. But he was a devoted
patriot, he was true to his plighted faith, and above all he was free
from all taint of pecuniary corruption. The earlier history of both
nations is full of legends illustrating these points, which, whether
individually true or not, bear abundant testimony to the national
ideal. But with irresponsible power, Roman and Spartan alike, while
remaining as brutally indifferent as ever to the sufferings of others,
lost all that was best in his own ethical equipment. Instead of
patriotism we find unblushing self-interest as the motive of every
action; in place of good faith, the most shameless dishonesty; and,
for the old contempt of ill-gotten gains, a corruption so fathomless
and all-pervading as fairly to stagger us. The tale of the doings of
Verres in a district so near Rome as Sicily shows us a depth of mire
and degeneration to which no constitution could sink and live.

A. 4.--Nor could the Roman constitution survive it. From the Provinces
the taint spread with fatal rapidity to the City itself. The thirst
for lucre became the leading force in the State; for its sake the
Classes more and more trampled down the Masses; and entrance to the
Classes was a matter no longer of birth, but of money alone. And all
history testifies that the State which becomes a plutocracy is doomed
indeed. Of all possible forms of government--autocracy, oligarchy,
democracy--that is the lowest, that most surely bears within itself
the seeds of its own inevitable ruin.

A. 5.--So it was with the Roman Republic. As soon as this stage was
reached it began to "stew in its own juice" with appalling rapidity.
Reformers, like the Gracchi, were crushed; and the commonwealth went
to pieces under the shocks and counter-shocks of demagogues like
Clodius, conspirators like Catiline, and military adventurers such
as Marius and Sulla--for whose statue the Senate could find no more
constitutional title than "The Lucky General" [_Sullae Imperatori
Felici_] Well-meaning individuals, such as Cicero and Pompey, were
still to be found, and even came to the front, but they all alike
proved unequal to the crisis; which, in fact, threw up one man, and
one only, of force to become a real maker of history--Caius Julius
Caesar, the first Roman invader of Britain.

A. 6.--Caesar was at the time of this invasion (55 B.C.) some
forty-five years old; but he had not long become a real power in the
political arena. Sprung from the bluest blood of Rome--the Julian
House tracing their origin to the mythical Iulus, son of Aeneas, and
thus claiming descent from the Goddess Venus--we might have expected
to find him enrolled amongst the aristocratic conservatives, the
champions of the _régime_ of Sulla. But though a mere boy at the date
of the strife between the partisans of Sulla and Marius (B.C. 88-78),
Caesar was already clear-sighted enough to perceive that in the
"Classes" of that day there was no help for the tempest-tossed
commonwealth. Accordingly he threw in his lot with the revolutionary
Marian movement, broke off a wealthy matrimonial engagement arranged
for him by his parents to become the son-in-law of Cinna, and in the
very thick of the Sullan proscriptions, braved the Dictator by openly
glorying in his connection with the defeated reformers. How he escaped
with his life, even at the intercession, if it was indeed made, of the
Vestals, is a mystery; for Sulla (who had little regard for religious,
or any other, scruples) was deliberately extirpating every soul whom
he thought dangerous to the plutocracy, and is said to have pronounced
"that boy" as "more to be dreaded than many a Marius." He did,
however, escape; but till the vanquished party recovered in some
degree from this ruthless massacre of their leaders, he could take no
prominent part in politics. The minor offices of Quaestor, Aedile,
and Praetor he filled with credit, and meanwhile seemed to be giving
himself up to shine in Society, which was not, in Rome, then at its
best; and his reputation for intrigue, his skill at the gaming-table,
and his fashionable swagger were the envy of all the young bloods of
the day.

A. 7.--The Catiline conspiracy (B.C. 63), and the irregular executions
that followed its suppression, at length gave him his opportunity.
While the Senate was hailing Cicero as "the Father of his country" for
the stern promptitude which enabled him, as Consul, to say "_Vixere_"
["They _have_ lived"] in answer to the question as to the doom of the
conspirators, Caesar had electrified the assembly by his denunciation
of the view that, in whatsoever extremity, the blood of Roman citizens
might be shed by a Roman Consul, secretly and without legal warrant.
Henceforward he took his place as the special leader on whom popular
feeling at Rome more and more pinned its hopes. As Pontifex Maximus he
gained (B.C. 63) a shadowy but far from unreal religious influence;
as Pro-praetor he solidified the Roman dominion in Spain (where he
had already been Quaestor); and on his return (B.C. 60) reconciled
Crassus, the head of the moneyed interest, with Pompey, the darling
of the Army, and by their united influence was raised next year to the

A. 8.--A Roman Consul invariably, after the expiration of his year of
office, was sent as Pro-consul to take charge of one of the Provinces,
practically having a good deal of personal say as to which should be
assigned to him. Caesar thus chose for his proconsular government the
district of Gaul then under Roman dominion, _i.e._ the valley of the
Po, and that of the Rhone. In making this choice Caesar was actuated
by the fact that in Gaul he was more likely than anywhere else to come
in for active service. Unquiet neighbours on the frontier, Germans and
Helvetians, were threatening invasion, and would have to be repelled.
And this would give the Pro-consul the chance of doing what Caesar
specially desired, of raising and training an army which he might make
as devoted to himself as were Pompey's veterans to their brilliant
chieftain--the hero "as beautiful as he was brave, as good as he was
beautiful." Without such a force Caesar foresaw that all his efforts
to redress the abuses of the State would be in vain. As Consul he had
carried certain small instalments of reform; but they had made him
more hated than ever by the classes at whose corruption they were
aimed, and might any day be overthrown. And neither Pompey nor Crassus
were in any way to be depended upon for his plans in this direction.

A. 9.--Events proved kinder to him than he could have hoped. His
ill-wishers at Rome actually aided his preparations for war; for
Caesar had not yet gained any special military reputation, while
the barbarians whom he was to meet had a very high one, and might
reasonably be expected to destroy him. And the Helvetian peril proved
of such magnitude that he had every excuse for making a much larger
levy than there was any previous prospect of his securing. On the
surpassing genius with which he manipulated the weapon thus put into
his hand there is no need to dwell. Suffice it to say that in spite
of overwhelming superiority in numbers, courage yet more signal, a
stronger individual physique, and arms as effective, his foes one
after another vanished before him. Helvetians, Germans, Belgians,
were not merely conquered, but literally annihilated, as often as they
ventured to meet him, and in less than three years the whole of Gaul
was at his feet.


Sea-fight with Veneti and Britons--Pretexts for invading
Britain--British dominion of Divitiacus--Gallic tribes in

B. 1.--One of the last tribes to be subdued (in B.C. 56) was that
which, as the chief seafaring race of Gaul, had the most intimate
relations with Britain, the Veneti, or men of Vannes, who dwelt in
what is now Brittany.[68] These enterprising mariners had developed a
form of vessel fitted to cope with the stormy Chops of the Channel on
lines exactly opposite to those of the British "curraghs."[69] Instead
of being so light as to rise to every lift of the waves, and with
frames so flexible as to bend rather than break under their every
stress, the Venetian ships were of the most massive construction,
built wholly of the stoutest oak planking, and with timbers upwards of
a foot in thickness. All were bolted together with iron pins "as thick
as a man's thumb." Forecastle and poop were alike lofty, with a lower
waist for the use of sweeps if needful. But this was only exceptional,
sails being the usual motive power. And these were constructed chiefly
with a view to strength. Instead of canvas, they were formed of
untanned hides. And instead of hempen cables the Veneti were so far
ahead of their time as to use iron chains with their anchors; an
invention which perished with them, not to come in again till the 19th
century. Their broad beam and shallow keel enabled these ships to
lie more conveniently in the tidal inlets on either side of the

B. 2.--Thus equipped, the Veneti had tapped the tin trade at its
source, and established emporia at Falmouth, Plymouth, and Exmouth;
on the sites of which ancient ingots, Gallic coins of gold, and
other relics of their period have lately been discovered. Thence they
conveyed their freight to the Seine, the Loire, and even the Garonne.
The great Damnonian clan, which held the whole of Devon and Cornwall,
were in close alliance with them, and sent auxiliaries to aid in their
final struggle against Caesar. Indeed they may possibly have drawn
allies from a yet wider area, if, as Mr. Elton conjectures, the
prehistoric boats which have at various times been found in the silt
at Glasgow may be connected with their influence.[71]

B. 3.--Caesar describes his struggle with the Veneti and their British
allies as one of the most arduous in his Gallic campaigns. The Roman
war galleys depended largely upon ramming in their sea-fights, but the
Venetian ships were so solidly built as to defy this method of attack.
At the same time their lofty prows and sterns enabled them to deliver
a plunging fire of missiles on the Roman decks, and even to command
the wooden turrets which Caesar had added to his bulwarks. They
invariably fought under sail, and manoeuvred so skilfully that
boarding was impossible. In the end, after several unsuccessful
skirmishes, Caesar armed his marines with long billhooks, instructing
them to strike at the halyards of the Gallic vessels as they swept
past. (These must have been fastened outboard.) The device succeeded.
One after another, in a great battle off Quiberon, of which the Roman
land force were spectators, the huge leathern mainsails dropped on
to the decks, doubtless "covering the ship as with a pall," as in the
like misfortune to the Elizabethan _Revenge_ in her heroic defence
against the Spanish fleet, and hopelessly crippling the vessel,
whether for sailing or rowing. The Romans were at last able to board,
and the whole Venetian fleet fell into their hands. The strongholds
on the coast were now stormed, and the entire population either
slaughtered or sold into slavery, as an object lesson to the rest of
the confederacy of the fate in store for those who dared to stand out
against the Genius of Rome.

B. 4.--Caesar had now got a very pretty excuse for extending his
operations to Britain, and, as his object was to pose at Rome as "a
Maker of Empire," he eagerly grasped at the chance. Something of a
handle, moreover, was afforded him by yet another connection between
the two sides of the Channel. Many people were still alive who
remembered the days when Divitiacus, King of the Suessiones (at
Soissons), had been the great potentate of Northern Gaul. In Caesar's
time this glory was of the past, and the Suessiones had sunk to
a minor position amongst the Gallic clans. But within the last
half-century the sway of their monarch had been acknowledged not only
over great part of Gaul, but in Britain also. Caesar's words, indeed,
would almost seem to point to the island as a whole having been in
some sense under him: _Etiam Britanniae imperium obtinuit_.[72]

B. 5.--And traces of his rule still existed in the occupation of
British districts by colonists from two tribes, which, as his nearest
neighbours, must certainly have formed part of any North Gallic
confederacy under him--the Atrebates and the Parisii. The former had
their continental seat in Picardy; the latter, as their name tells us,
on the Seine. Their insular settlements were along the southern bank
of the Thames and the northern bank of the Humber respectively. How
far the two sets of Parisians held together politically does not
appear; but the Atrebates, whether in Britain or Gaul, acknowledged
the claim of a single magnate, named Commius, to be their paramount
Chieftain.[73] In this capacity he had led his followers against
Caesar in the great Belgic confederacy of B.C. 58, and on its
collapse, instead of holding out to the last like the Nervii, had
made a timely submission. If convenient, this submission might be
represented as including that of his British dominions; especially
as we gather that a contingent from over-sea may have actually fought
under his banner against the Roman eagles. Nay, it is possible that
the old claims of the ruler of Soissons over Britain may have been
revived, now that that ruler was Julius Caesar. It is even conceivable
that his complaint of British assistance having been given to the
enemy "in all our Gallic wars" may point to his having heard some form
of the legend, whose echoes we meet with in Welsh Triads, that the
Gauls who sacked Rome three centuries earlier numbered Britons amongst
their ranks.


Defeat of Germans--Bridge over Rhine--Caesar's army--Dread
of ocean--Fleet at Boulogne--Commius sent to Britain--Channel
crossed--Attempt on Dover--Landing at Deal--Legionary
sentiment--British army dispersed.

C. 1.--For making use of these pretexts, however, Caesar had to wait
a while. It was needful to bring home to both supporters and opponents
his brilliant success by showing himself in Rome, during the idle
season when his men were in winter quarters. And when he got back to
his Province with the spring of A.D. 55, his first attention had to be
given to the Rhine frontier, whence a formidable German invasion
was threatening. With his usual skill and war-craft--which, on
this occasion, in the eyes of his Roman ill-wishers, seemed
indistinguishable from treachery--he annihilated the Teutonic
horde which had dared to cross the river; and then, by a miracle of
engineering skill, bridged the broad and rapid stream, and made such a
demonstration in Germany itself as to check the national trek westward
for half a millennium.

C. 2.--By this time, as this wonderful feat shows, the Army of Gaul
had become one of those perfect instruments into which only truly
great commanders can weld their forces. Like the Army of the
Peninsula, in the words of Wellington, "it could go anywhere and do
anything." The men who, when first enlisted, had trembled before
the Gauls, and absolutely shed tears at the prospect of encountering
Germans, now, under the magic of Caesar's genius, had learnt to dread
nothing. Often surprised, always outnumbered, sometimes contending
against tenfold odds, the legionaries never faltered. Each individual
soldier seems to have learnt to do instinctively the right thing in
every emergency, and every man worshipped his general. For every man
could see that it was Caesar and Caesar alone to whom every victory
was due. The very training of the engineers, the very devices, such as
that of the Rhine bridge, by which such mighty results were achieved,
were all due to him. Never before had any Roman leader, not even
Pompey "the Great," awakened such devotion amongst his followers.

C. 3.--Caesar therefore experienced no such difficulty as we shall
find besetting the Roman commanders of the next century, in persuading
his men to follow him "beyond the world,"[74] and to dare the venture,
hitherto unheard of in the annals of Rome, of crossing the ocean
itself. We must remember that this crossing was looked upon by the
Romans as something very different from the transits hither and
thither upon the Mediterranean Sea with which they were familiar. The
Ocean to them was an object of mysterious horror. Untold possibilities
of destruction might lurk in its tides and billows. Whence those tides
came and how far those billows rolled was known to no man. To dare
its passage might well be to court Heaven knew what of supernatural

C. 4.--But Caesar's men were ready to brave all things while he led
them. So, after having despatched his German business, he determined
to employ the short remainder of the summer in a _reconnaissance
en force_ across the Channel, with a view to subsequent invasion
of Britain. He had already made inquiries of all whom he could find
connected with the Britanno-Gallic trade as to the size and military
resources of the island. But they proved unwilling witnesses, and
he could not even get out of them what they must perfectly well have
known, the position of the best harbours on the southern shores.

C. 5.--His first act, therefore, was to send out a galley under
Volusenus "to pry along the coast," and meanwhile to order the fleet
which he had built against the Veneti to rendezvous at Boulogne.
Besides these war-galleys (_naves longae_) he got together eighty
transports, enough for two legions, besides eighteen more for the
cavalry.[75] These last were detained by a contrary wind at "a further
harbour," eight miles distant--probably Ambleteuse at the mouth of the

C. 6.--All these preparations, though they seem to have been carried
out with extreme celerity, lasted long enough to alarm the Britons.
Several clans sent over envoys, to promise submission if only Caesar
would refrain from invading the country. This, however, did not
suit Caesar's purpose. Such diplomatic advantages would be far less
impressive in the eyes of the Roman "gallery" to which he was playing
than his actual presence in Britain. So he merely told the envoys that
it would be all the better for them if he found them in so excellent
and submissive a frame of mind on his arrival at their shores, and
sent them back, along with Commius, who was to bring in his own clan,
the Atrebates, and as many more as he could influence. And the Britons
on their part, though ready to make a nominal submission to "the
mighty name of Rome," were resolved not to tolerate an actual invasion
without a fight for it. In every clan the war party came to the front,
all negotiations were abruptly broken off, Commius was thrown into
chains, and a hastily-summoned levy lined the coast about Dover, where
the enemy were expected to make their first attempt to land.

C. 7.--Dover, in fact, was the port that Caesar made for. It was, at
this date, the obvious harbour for such a fleet as his. All along
the coast of Kent the sea has, for many centuries, been constantly
retreating. Partly by the silting-up of river-mouths, partly by
the great drift of shingle from west to east which is so striking a
feature of our whole southern shore, fresh land has everywhere been
forming. Places like Rye and Winchelsea, which were well-known havens
of the Cinque Ports even to late mediaeval times, are now far inland.
And though Dover is still our great south-eastern harbour, this is
due entirely to the artificial extensions which have replaced the
naturally enclosed tidal area for which Caesar made. There is abundant
evidence that in his day the site of the present town was the bed
of an estuary winding for a mile or more inland between steep chalk
cliffs,[77] not yet denuded into slopes, whence the beach on either
side was absolutely commanded.

C. 8.--Caesar saw at a glance that a landing here was impossible to
such a force as he had with him. He had sailed from Boulogne "in the
third watch"--with the earliest dawn, that is to say--and by 10
a.m. his leading vessels, with himself on board, were close under
Shakespeare's Cliff. There he saw the British army in position
waiting for him, crowning the heights above the estuary, and ready
to overwhelm his landing-parties with a plunging fire of missiles. He
anchored for a space till the rest of his fleet came up, and meanwhile
called a council of war of his leading officers to deliberate on the
best way of proceeding in the difficulty. It was decided to make for
the open shore to the northwards (perhaps for Richborough,[78] the
next secure roadstead of those days), and at three in the afternoon
the trumpet sounded, the anchors were weighed, and the fleet coasted
onwards with the flowing tide.[79]

C. 9.--The British army also struck camp, and kept pace by land with
the invaders' progress. First came the cavalry and chariot-men, the
mounted infantry of the day; then followed the main body, who in the
British as in every army, ancient or modern, fought on foot. We can
picture the scene, the bright harvest afternoon--(according to
the calculations of Napoleon, in his 'Life of Caesar,' it was St.
Bartholomew's Day)--the calm sea, the long Roman galleys with their
rows of sweeps, the heavier and broader transports with their great
mainsails rounding out to the gentle breeze, and on cliff and beach
the British ranks in their waving tartans--each clan, probably,
distinguished by its own pattern--the bright armour of the chieftains,
the thick array of weapons, and in front the mounted contingent
hurrying onwards to give the foe a warm greeting ere he could set foot
on shore.

C. 10.--Thus did invaders and defenders move on, for some seven miles,
passing, as Dio Cassius notes, beneath the lofty cliffs of the South
Foreland,[80] till these died down into the flat shore and open beach
of Deal. By this time it must have been nearly five o'clock, and if
Caesar was to land at all that day it must be done at once. Anchor was
again cast; but so flat was the shore that the transports, which drew
at least four feet of water, could not come within some distance
of it. Between the legionaries and the land stretched yards of
sea, shoulder-deep to begin with, and concealing who could say what
treacherous holes and quicksands beneath its surface. And their wading
had to be done under heavy fire; for the British cavalry and chariots
had already come up, and occupied every yard of the beach, greeting
with a shower of missiles every motion of the Romans to disembark.
This was more than even Caesar's soldiers were quite prepared to face.
The men, small shame to them, hesitated, and did not spring overboard
with the desired alacrity. Caesar's galleys, however, were of lighter
draught, and with them he made a demonstration on the right flank (the
_latus apertum_ of ancient warfare, the shield being on every man's
_left_ arm) of the British; who, under a severe fire of slings,
arrows, and catapults, drew back, though only a little, to take up a
new formation, and their fire, in turn, was for the moment silenced.
And that moment was seized for a gallant feat of arms which shows how
every rank of Caesar's army was animated by Caesar's spirit.

C. 11.--The ensign of every Roman legion was the Roman Eagle, perched
upon the head of the standard-pole, and regarded with all, and
more than all, the feeling which our own regiments have for their
regimental colours. As with them, the staff which bore the Eagle
of the Legion also bore inscriptions commemorating the honours and
victories the legion had won, and to lose it to the foe was an even
greater disgrace than with us. For a Roman legion was a much larger
unit than a modern regiment, and corresponded rather to a Division;
indeed, in the completeness of its separate organization, it might
almost be called an Army Corps. Six thousand was its normal force in
infantry, and it had its own squadrons of cavalry attached, its
own engineer corps, its own baggage train, and its own artillery of
catapults and balistae.[81] There was thus even more legionary feeling
in the Roman army than there is regimental feeling in our own.

C. 12.--At this time, however, this feeling, so potent in its effects
subsequently, was a new development. Caesar himself would seem to have
been the first to see how great an incentive such divisional sentiment
might prove, and to have done all he could to encourage it. He had
singled out one particular legion, the Tenth, as his own special
favourite, and made its soldiers feel themselves the objects of his
special regard. And this it was which now saved the day for him. The
colour-sergeant of that legion, seeing the momentary opening given by
the flanking movement of the galleys, after a solemn prayer that this
might be well for his legion, plunged into the sea, ensign in hand.
"Over with you, comrades," he cried, "if you would not see your Eagle
taken by the enemy." With a universal shout of "Never, never" the
legion followed; the example spread from ship to ship, and the whole
Roman army was splashing and struggling towards the shore of Britain.

C. 13.--At the same time this was no easy task. As every bather
knows, it is not an absolutely straightforward matter for even an
unencumbered man to effect a landing upon a shingle beach, if ever so
little swell is on. And the Roman soldier had to keep his footing, and
use his arms moreover for fighting, with some half-hundredweight
of accoutrements about him. To form rank was, of course, out of
the question. The men forced their way onward, singly and in little
groups, often having to stand back to back in rallying-squares, as
soon as they came within hand-stroke of the enemy.[82] And this was
before they reached dry land. For the British cavalry and chariots
dashed into the water to meet them, making full use of the advantage
which horsemen have under such circumstances, able to ply the full
swing of their arms unembarrassed by the waves, not lifted off their
feet or rolled over by the swell, and delivering their blows from
above on foes already in difficulties. And on their side, they copied
the flanking movement of the Romans, and wheeled round a detachment
to fire upon the _latus apertum_ of such invaders as succeeded in
reaching shallower water.

C. 14.--Thus the fight, in Caesar's words, was an exceedingly sharp
one. It was not decided till he sent in the boats of his galleys, and
any other light craft he had, to mingle with the combatants. These
could doubtless get right alongside the British chariots; and now the
advantage of position came to be the other way. A troop of irregular
horsemen up to their girths in water is no match for a boat's crew of
disciplined infantry. Moreover the tide was flowing,[83] and driving
the Britons back moment by moment. For a while they yet resisted
bravely, but discipline had the last word. Yard by yard the Romans won
their way, till at length they set foot ashore, formed up on the beach
in that open order[84] which made the unique strength of the Legions,
and delivered their irresistible charge. The Britons did not wait for
the shock. Their infantry was, probably, already in retreat, covered
by the cavalry and chariots, who now in their turn gave rein to their
ponies and retired at a gallop.

C. 15.--Caesar saw them go, and bitterly felt that his luck had failed
him. Had he but cavalry, this retreat might have been turned into
a rout. But his eighteen transports had failed to arrive, and his
drenched and exhausted infantry were in no case for effective pursuit
of a foe so superior in mobility. Moreover the sun must have been now
fast sinking, and all speed had to be made to get the camp fortified
before nightfall. But the Roman soldier was an adept at entrenching
himself. A rampart was hastily thrown up, the galleys beached at the
top of the tide and run up high and dry beyond the reach of the surf,
the transports swung to their anchors where the ebb would not leave
them grounded, the quarters of the various cohorts assigned them, the
sentries and patrols duly set; and under the summer moon, these first
of the Roman invaders lay down for their first night on British soil.


Wreck of fleet--Fresh British levy--Fight in corn-field--British
chariots--Attack on camp--Romans driven into sea.

D. 1.--Meanwhile the defeated Britons had made off, probably to their
camp above Dover, where their leaders' first act, on rallying, was to
send their prisoner, Commius, under a flag of truce to Caesar, with
a promise of unconditional submission. That his landing had been
opposed, was, they declared, no fault of theirs; it was all the
witlessness of their ignorant followers, who had insisted on fighting.
Would he overlook it? Yes; Caesar was ready to show this clemency;
but, after conduct so very like treachery, considering their embassy
to him in Gaul, he must insist on hostages, and plenty of them. A few
were accordingly sent in, and the rest promised in a few days,
being the quota due from more distant clans. The British forces were
disbanded; indeed, as it was harvest time, they could scarcely have
been kept embodied anyhow; and a great gathering of chieftains was
held at which it was resolved that all alike should acknowledge the
suzerainty of Rome.

D. 2.--This assembly seems to have been held on the morrow of the
battle or the day after, so that it can only have been attended by the
local Kentish chiefs, unless we are to suppose (as may well have been
the case), that the Army of Dover comprised levies and captains from
other parts of Britain. But whatever it was, before the resolution
could be carried into effect an unlooked-for accident changed the
whole situation.

D. 3.--On the fourth day after the Roman landing, the south-westerly
wind which had carried Caesar across shifted a few points to the
southward. The eighteen cavalry transports were thus enabled to leave
Ambleteuse harbour, and were seen approaching before a gentle breeze.
The wind, however, continued to back against the sun, and, as usual,
to freshen in doing so. Thus, before they could make the land, it was
blowing hard from the eastward, and there was nothing for them but to
bear up. Some succeeded in getting back to the shelter of the Gallic
shore, others scudded before the gale and got carried far to the
west, probably rounding-to under the lee of Beachy Head, where they
anchored. For this, however, there was far too much sea running.
Wave after wave dashed over the bows, they were in imminent danger of
swamping, and, when the tide turned at nightfall, they got under weigh
and shaped the best course they could to the southern shore of the

D. 4.--And this same tide that thus carried away his reinforcements
all but wrecked Caesar's whole fleet at Deal. His mariners had
strangely forgotten that with the full moon the spring tides would
come on; a phenomenon which had been long ago remarked by Pytheas,[85]
and with which they themselves must have been perfectly familiar on
the Gallic coast. And this tide was not only a spring, but was driven
by a gale blowing straight on shore. Thus the sleeping soldiers were
aroused by the spray dashing over them, and awoke to find the breakers
pounding into their galleys on the beach; while, of the transports,
some dragged their anchors and were driven on shore to become total
wrecks, some cut their cables, and beat, as best they might, out to
sea, and all, when the tide and wind alike went down, were found next
morning in wretched plight. Not an anchor or cable, says Caesar, was
left amongst them, so that it was impossible for them to keep their
station off the shore by the camp.

D. 5.--The army, not unnaturally, was in dismay. They were merely on
a reconnaissance, without any supply of provisions, without even their
usual baggage; perhaps without tents, certainly without any means of
repairing the damage to the fleet. Get back to Gaul for the winter
they must under pain of starvation, and where were the ships to take

D. 6.--The Britons, on the other hand, felt that their foes were
now delivered into their hands. Instead of the submission they were
arranging, the Council of the Chiefs resolved to make the most of the
opportunity, and teach the world by a great example that Britain was
not a safe place to invade. Nor need this cost many British lives.
They had only to refuse the Romans food; what little could be got by
foraging would soon be exhausted; then would come the winter, and the
starving invaders would fall an easy prey. The annihilation of the
entire expedition would damp Roman ambitions against Britain for many
a long day. A solemn oath bound one and all to this plan, and every
chief secretly began to levy his clansmen afresh.

D. 7.--Naturally, hostages ceased to be sent in; but it did not need
this symptom to show Caesar in how tight a place he now was. His only
chance was to strain every nerve to get his ships refitted; and by
breaking up those most damaged, and ordering what materials were
available from the Continent, he did in a week or two succeed in
rendering some sixty out of his eighty vessels just seaworthy.

D. 8.--And while this work was in progress, another event showed how
imperative was his need and how precarious his situation. He had, in
fact, been guilty of a serious military blunder in going with a mere
flying column into Britain as he had gone into Germany. The Channel
was not the Rhine, and ships were exposed to risks from which his
bridge had been entirely exempt. Nothing but a crushing defeat would
cut him off from retiring by that; but the Ocean was not to be so

D. 9.--It was, as we have said, the season of harvest, and the corn
was not yet cut, though the men of Kent were busily at work in the
fields. With regard to the crops nearest the camp, the legionaries
spared them the trouble of reaping, by commandeering the corn
themselves, the area of their operations having, of course, to be
continually extended. Harvesters numbered by the thousand make quick
work; and in a day or two the whole district was cleared, either by
Roman or Briton. Caesar's scouts could only bring him word of one
unreaped field, bordered by thick woodland, a mile or two from the
camp, and hidden from it by a low swell of the ground. Mr. Vine, in
his able monograph 'Caesar in Kent,' thinks that the spot may still be
identified, on the way between Deal and Dover, where, by this time, a
considerable British force was once more gathered. So entirely was
the whole country on the patriot side, that no suspicion of all this
reached the Romans, and still less did they dream that the unreaped
corn-field was an elaborate trap, and that the woodlands beside it
were filled, or ready for filling, by masses of the enemy. The Seventh
legion, which was that day on duty, sent out a strong fatigue party
to seize the prize; who, on reaching the field, grounded shields and
spears, took off, probably, their helmets and tunics, and set to work
at cutting down the corn, presumably with their swords.

D. 10.--Not long afterwards the camp guard reported to Caesar that
a strange cloud of dust was rising beyond the ridge over which the
legion had disappeared. Seeing at once that something was amiss, he
hastily bade the two cohorts (about a thousand men) of the guard to
set off with him instantly, while the other legion, the Tenth, was to
relieve them, and follow with all the rest of their force as speedily
as possible. Pushing on with all celerity, he soon could tell by the
shouts of his soldiers and the yells of the enemy that his men were
hard pressed; and, on crowning the ridge, saw the remnant of the
legion huddled together in a half-armed mass, with the British
chariots sweeping round them, each chariot-crew[86] as it came up
springing down to deliver a destructive volley of missiles, then on
board and away to replenish their magazine and charge in once more.

D. 11.--Even at this moment Caesar found time to note and admire the
supreme skill which the enemy showed in this, to him, novel mode of
fighting. Their driving was like that of the best field artillery of
our day; no ground could stop them; up and down slopes, between and
over obstacles, they kept their horses absolutely in hand; and, out of
sheer bravado, would now and again exhibit such feats of trick-driving
as to run along the pole, and stand on the yoke, while at full speed.
Such skill, as he truly observed, could not have been acquired without
constant drill, both of men and horses; and his military genius
grasped at once the immense advantages given by these tactics,
combining "the mobility of cavalry with the stability of infantry."

D. 12.--We may notice that Caesar says not a word of the scythe-blades
with which popular imagination pictures the wheels of the British
chariots to have been armed. Such devices were in use amongst the
Persians, and figure at Cunaxa and Arbela. But there the chariots were
themselves projectiles, as it were, to break the hostile ranks; and
even for this purpose the scythes proved quite ineffective, while they
must have made the whole equipment exceedingly unhandy. In the 'De Re
Militari' (an illustrated treatise of the 5th century A.D. annexed to
the 'Notitia') scythed chariots are shown. But the scythes always
have chains attached, to pull them up out of the way in ordinary
manoeuvres. The Britons of this date, whose chariots were only to
bring their crews up to the foe and carry them off again, had, we may
be sure, no such cumbrous and awkward arrangement.[87]

D. 13.--On this scene of wild onset Caesar arrived in the nick of time
[_tempore opportunissimo_]. The Seventh, surprised and demoralized,
were on the point of breaking, when his appearance on the ridge caused
the assailants to draw back. The Tenth came up and formed; their
comrades, possibly regaining some of their arms, rallied behind them,
and the Britons did not venture to press their advantage home. But
neither did Caesar feel in any case to retaliate the attack [_alienum
esse tempus arbitratus_], and led his troops back with all convenient
speed. The Britons, we may well believe, represented the affair as a
glorious victory for the patriot arms.[88] They employed several days
of bad weather which followed in spreading the tidings, and calling
on all lovers of freedom or of spoil to join in one great effort for
crushing the presumptuous invader.

D. 14.--The news spread like wild-fire, and the Romans found
themselves threatened in their very camp (whence they had taken care
not to stir since their check) by a mighty host both of horse and
footmen. Caesar was compelled to fight, the legions were drawn up with
their backs to the rampart, that the hostile cavalry might not take
them in rear, and, after a long hand-to-hand struggle, the Roman
charge once more proved irresistible. The Britons turned their backs
and fled; this time cut up, in their retreat, by a small body of
thirty Gallic horsemen whom Commius had brought over as his escort,
and who had shared his captivity and release. So weak a force could,
of course, inflict no serious loss upon the enemy, but, before
returning to the camp, they made a destructive raid through the
neighbouring farms and villages, "wasting all with fire and sword far
and wide."

D. 15.--That same day came fresh envoys to treat for peace. They were
now required to furnish twice as many hostages as before; but Caesar
could not wait to receive them. They must be sent after him to the
Continent. His position had become utterly untenable; the equinoctial
gales might any day begin; and he was only too glad to find wind and
weather serve that very night for his re-embarkation. Under cover
of the darkness he huddled his troops on board; and next morning the
triumphant Britons beheld the invaders' fleet far on their flight
across the Narrow Seas.


Caesar worsted--New fleet built--Caesar at Rome--Cicero--Expedition
of 54 B.C.--Unopposed Landing--Pro-Roman Britons--Trinobantes
--Mandubratius--British army surprised--"Old England's Hole."

E. 1.--Caesar too had, on his side, gained what he wanted, though at a
risk quite disproportionate to the advantage. So much prestige had
he lost that on his disembarkation his force was set upon by the very
Gauls whom he had so signally beaten two years before. Their attack
was crushed with little difficulty and great slaughter; but that
it should have been made at all shows that he was supposed to be
returning as a beaten man. However, he now knew enough about Britain
and the Britons to estimate what force would be needful for a real
invasion, and energetically set to work to prepare it. To make such
an invasion, and to succeed in it, had now become absolutely necessary
for his whole future. At any cost the events of the year 55 must be
"wiped off the slate;" the more so as, out of all the British clans,
two only sent in their promised hostages. Caesar's dispatches home, we
may be sure, were admirably written, and so represented matters as to
gain him a _supplicatio_, or solemn thanksgiving, of twenty days from
the Senate. But the unpleasant truth was sure to leak out unless it
was overlaid by something better. It did indeed so far leak out
that Lucan[89] was able to write: _Territa quaesitis ostendit terga

  ["He sought the Britons; then, in panic dread,
  Turned his brave back, and from his victory fled."]

E. 2.--Before setting off, therefore, for his usual winter visit to
Rome, he set all his legionaries to work in their winter quarters, at
building ships ready to carry out his plans next spring. He himself
furnished the drawings, after a design of his own, like our own
Alfred a thousand years later.[90] They were to be of somewhat lower
free-board than was customary, and of broader beam, for Caesar had
noted that the choppy waves of the Channel had not the long run of
Mediterranean or Atlantic rollers. All, moreover, were to be provided
with sweeps; for he did not intend again to be at the mercy of the
wind. And with such zeal and skill did the soldiers carry out his
instructions, by aid of the material which he ordered from the
dockyards of Spain, that before the winter was over they had
constructed no fewer than six hundred of these new vessels, besides
eighty fresh war-galleys.

E. 3.--Caesar meanwhile was also at his winter's work amid the turmoil
of Roman politics. His "westward ho!" movement was causing all the
stir he hoped for. We can see in Cicero's correspondence with Atticus,
with Trebatius, and with his own brother Quintus (who was attached
in some capacity to Caesar's second expedition), how full Rome was of
gossip and surmise as to the outcome of this daring adventure. "Take
care," he says to Trebatius, "you who are always preaching caution;
mind you don't get caught by the British chariot-men."[91] "You will
find, I hear, absolutely nothing in Britain--no gold, no silver. I
advise you to capture a chariot and drive straight home. Anyhow get
yourself into Caesar's good books."[92]

E. 4.--To be in Caesar's good books was, in fact, Cicero's own great
ambition at this time. Despite his constitutional zeal, he felt "the
Dynasts," as he called the Triumvirate, the only really strong force
in politics, and was ready to go to considerable lengths in courting
their favour--Caesar's in particular. He not only withdrew all
opposition to the additional five years of command in Gaul which the
subservient Senate had unconstitutionally decreed to the "dynast,"
but induced his brother Quintus to volunteer for service in the coming
invasion of Britain. Through Quintus he invited Caesar's criticisms
on his own very poor verses, and wrote a letter, obviously meant to be
shown, expressing boundless gratification at a favourable notice: "If
_he_ thinks well of my poetry, I shall know it is no mere one-horse
concern, but a real four-in-hand." "Caesar tells me he never read
better Greek. But why does he write [Greek: rhathumôtera] ['rather
careless'] against one passage? He really does. Do find out why."

E. 5.--This gentle criticism seems to have somewhat damped Cicero's
ardour for Caesar and his British glories. His every subsequent
mention of the expedition is to belittle it. In the spring he had
written to Trebatius: "So our dear Caesar really thinks well of you as
a counsel. You will be glad indeed to have gone with him to Britain.
There at least you will never meet your match."[93] But in the summer
it is: "I certainly don't blame you for showing yourself so little
of a sight-seer [_non nimis_ [Greek: philotheôron]] in this British
matter."[94] "I am truly glad you never went there. You have missed
the trouble, and I the bore of listening to your tales about it
all."[95] To Atticus he writes: "We are all awaiting the issue of
this British war. We hear the approaches [_aditus_] of the island are
fortified with stupendous ramparts [_mirificis molibus_]. Anyhow we
know that not one scruple [_scrupulum_] of money exists there, nor
any other plunder except slaves--and none of them either literary or
artistic."[96] "I heard (on Oct. 24) from Caesar and from my brother
Quintus that all is over in Britain. No booty.... They wrote on
September 26, just embarking."

E. 6.--Both Caesar and Quintus seem to have been excellent
correspondents, and between them let Cicero hear from Britain almost
every week during their stay in the island, the letters taking on
an average about a month to reach him. He speaks of receiving on
September 27 one written by Caesar on September 1; and on September 13
one from Quintus ("your fourth")[97] written August 10. And apparently
they were very good letters, for which Cicero was duly grateful. "What
pleasant letters," he says to Quintus, "you do write.... I see you
have an extraordinary turn for writing [[Greek: hypothesin] _scribendi
egregiam_]. Tell me all about it, the places, the people, the customs,
the clans, the fighting. What are they all like? And what is your
general like?"[98] "Give me Britain, that I may paint it in your
colours with my own brush [_penicillo_]."[99] This last sentence
refers to a heroic poem on "The Glories of Caesar," which Cicero
seems to have meditated but never brought into being. Nor do we know
anything of the contents of his British correspondence, except that it
contains some speculations about our tide-ways; for, in his 'De Natura
Deorum,'[100] Cicero pooh-poohs the idea that such natural phenomena
argue the existence of a God: "Quid? Aestus maritimi ... Britannici
... sine Deo fieri nonne possunt?"

E. 7.--Neither can we say what he meant by the "stupendous ramparts"
against Caesar's access to our island. The Dover cliffs have been
suggested, and the Goodwin Sands; but it seems much more probable
that the Britons were believed to have artificially fortified the most
accessible landing-places. Perhaps they may have actually done so, but
if they did it was to no purpose; for this time Caesar disembarked
his army quite unopposed. On his return from Rome he had bidden his
newly-built fleet, along with what was left of the old one,
rendezvous at Boulogne; whence, after long delay through a continuous
north-westerly breeze [_Corus_], he was at length enabled to set sail
with no fewer than eight hundred vessels. Never throughout history has
so large a navy threatened our shores. The most numerous of the
Danish expeditions contained less than four hundred ships, William the
Conqueror's less than seven hundred;[101] the Spanish Armada not two

E. 8.--Caesar was resolved this time to be in sufficient strength, and
no longer despised his enemies. He brought with him five out of
his eight legions, some thirty thousand infantry, that is, and two
thousand horse. The rest remained under his most trusted lieutenant,
Labienus, to police Gaul and keep open his communications with Rome.
According to Polyaenus[102] (A.D. 180), he even brought over with him
a fighting elephant, to terrify the natives and their horses. There
is nothing impossible about the story; though it is not likely Caesar
would have forgotten to mention so striking a feature of his campaign.
One particular animal we may be sure he had with him, his own famous
charger with the cloven hoof, which had been bred in his own stud, and
would suffer on its back none but himself. On it, as the rumour went,
it had been prophesied by the family seer that he should ever ride to

E. 9.--It was, as the Emperor Napoleon has calculated, on July
21 that, at sun-set this mighty armament put out before a gentle
south-west air, which died away at midnight, leaving them becalmed
on a waveless sea. When morning dawned Britain lay on their left, and
they were drifting up the straits with the tide. By and by it turned,
oars were got out, and every vessel made for the spot which the events
of the previous year had shown to be the best landing-place.[103]
Thanks to Caesar's foresight the transports as well as the galleys
could now be thus propelled, and such was the ardour of the soldiers
that both classes of ships kept pace with one another, in spite of
their different build. The transports, of course, contained men enough
to take turns at the sweeps, while the galley oarsmen could not be
relieved. By noon they reached Britain, and found not a soul to resist
their landing. There had been, as Caesar learnt from "prisoners," a
large force gathered for that purpose, but the terrific multitude of
his ships had proved quite too demoralizing, and the patriot army had
retired to "higher ground," to which the prisoners were able to direct
the invader.

E. 10.--There is obviously something strange about this tale. There
was no fighting, the shore was deserted, yet somehow prisoners were
taken, and prisoners singularly well informed as to the defenders'
strategy. The story reads very much as if these useful individuals
were really deserters, or, as the Britons would call it, traitors. We
know that in one British tribe, at least, there was a pro-Roman party.
Not long before this there had fled to Caesar in Gaul, Mandubratius,
the fugitive prince of the Trinobantes, who dwelt in Essex. His
father Immanuentius had been slain in battle by Cassivellaunus,
or Caswallon[104] (the king of their westward neighbours the
Cateuchlani), now the most powerful chieftain in Britain, and he
himself driven into exile.

E. 11.--This episode seems to have formed part of a general native
rising against the over-sea suzerainty of Divitiacus, which had
brought Caswallon to the front as the national champion. It was
Caswallon who was now in command against Caesar, and if, as is very
probable, there was any Trinobantian contingent in his army, they
may well have furnished these "prisoners." For Caesar had brought
Mandubratius with him for the express purpose of influencing the
Trinobantes, who were in fact thus induced in a few weeks to set an
example of submission to Rome, as soon as their fear of Caswallon
was removed. And meanwhile nothing is more likely than that a certain
number of ardent loyalists should leave the usurper's ranks and hasten
to greet their hereditary sovereign, so soon as ever he landed.
The later British accounts develop the transaction into an act of
wholesale treachery; Mandubratius (whose name they discover to mean
_The Black Traitor_) deserting, in the thick of a fight, to Caesar,
at the head of twenty thousand clansmen,--an absurd exaggeration which
may yet have the above-mentioned kernel of truth.

E. 12.--But whoever these "prisoners" were, their information was so
important, and in Caesar's view so trustworthy, that he proceeded to
act upon it that very night. Before even entrenching his camp, leaving
only ten cohorts and three hundred horse to guard the vessels, most of
which were at anchor on the smooth sea, he set off at the head of his
army "in the third watch," and after a forced march of twelve miles,
probably along the British trackway afterwards called Watling Street,
found himself at daybreak in touch with the enemy. The British forces
were stationed on a ridge of rising ground, at the foot of which
flowed a small stream. Napoleon considers this stream to have been the
Lesser Stour (now a paltry rivulet, dry in summer, but anciently much
larger), and the hill to have been Barham Down, the camping-ground of
so many armies throughout British history.

E. 13.--The battle began with a down-hill charge of the British
cavalry and chariots against the Roman horse who were sent forward
to seize the passage of the stream. Beaten back they retreated to its
banks, which were now, doubtless, lined by their infantry. And here
the real struggle took place. The unhappy Britons, however, were
hopelessly outclassed, and very probably outnumbered, by Caesar's
twenty-four thousand legionaries and seventeen hundred horsemen. They
gave way, some dispersing in confusion, but the best of their troops
retiring in good order to a stronghold in the neighbouring woods,
"well fortified both by nature and art," which was a legacy from some
local quarrel. Now they had strengthened it with an abattis of felled
trees, which was resolutely defended, while skirmishers in open
order harassed the assailants from the neighbouring forest [_rari
propugnabant e silvis_]. It was necessary for the Seventh legion
to throw up trenches, and finally to form a "tortoise" with their
shields, as in the assault on a regularly fortified town, before the
position could be carried. Then, at last, the Britons were driven from
the wood, and cut up in their flight over the open down beyond.
The spot where they made this last stand is still, in local legend,
associated with the vague memory of some patriot defeat, and known by
the name of "Old England's Hole." Traces of the rampart, and of the
assailants' trenches, are yet visible.[105]


Fleet again wrecked--Britons rally under Caswallon--Battle of Barham
Down--Britons fly to London--Origin of London--Patriot army dispersed.

F. 1.--It was Caesar's intention to give the broken enemy no chance
of rallying. In spite of the dire fatigue of his men (who had now been
without sleep for two nights, and spent the two succeeding days in
hard rowing and hard fighting), he sent forward the least exhausted to
press the pursuit. But before the columns thus detailed had got out of
sight a message from the camp at Richborough changed his purpose. The
mishap of the previous year had been repeated. Once more the gentle
breeze had changed to a gale, and the fleet which he had left so
smoothly riding at anchor was lying battered and broken on the beach.
His own presence was urgently needed on the scene of the misfortune,
and it would have been madness to let the campaign go on without
him. So the pursuers, horse and foot, were hastily recalled, and,
doubtless, were glad enough to encamp, like their comrades, on the
ground so lately won, where they took their well-earned repose.

F. 2.--But for Caesar there could be no rest. Without the loss of a
moment he rode back to the landing-place, where he found the state
of things fully as bad as had been reported to him. Forty ships were
hopelessly shattered; but by dint of strenuous efforts he succeeded
in saving the rest. All were now drawn on shore, and tinkered up by
artificers from the legions, while instructions were sent over to
Labienus for the building of a fresh fleet in Gaul. The naval station,
too, was this time thoroughly fortified.

F. 3.--Ten days sufficed for the work; but meanwhile much of the
fruit of the previous victory had been lost. The Britons, finding the
pursuit checked, and learning the reason, had rallied their scattered
force; and when Caesar returned to his camp at Barham Down he found
before it a larger patriot army than ever, with Caswallon (who is
now named for the first time) at its head. This hero, who, as we
have said, may have been brought to the front through the series of
inter-tribal wars which had ruined the foreign supremacy of Divitiacus
in Britain, was by this time acclaimed his successor in a dignity
corresponding in some degree to the mythical Pendragonship of Welsh
legend.[106] His own immediate dominions included at least the future
districts of South Anglia and Essex, and his banner was followed by
something very like a national levy from the whole of Britain south
of the Forth. When we read of the extraordinary solidarity which
animated, over a much larger area, the equally separate clans of Gaul
in their rising against the Roman yoke a year later, there is nothing
incredible, or even improbable, in the Britons having developed
something of a like solidarity in their resistance to its being laid
upon their necks. Burmann's 'Anthology' contains an epigram which
bears witness to the existence amongst us even at that date of the
sentiment, "Britons never shall be slaves." Our island is described as
"_Libera non hostem non passa Britannia regem_."[107]

F. 4.--Even on his march from the new naval camp to Barham Down Caesar
was harassed by incessant attacks from flying parties of Caswallon's
chariots and horsemen, who would sweep up, deliver their blow, and
retire, only to take grim advantage of the slightest imprudence on
the part of the Roman cavalry in pursuit. And when, with a perceptible
number of casualties, the Down was reached, a stronger attack was
delivered on the outposts set to guard the working parties who were
entrenching the position, and the fighting became very sharp
indeed. The outposts were driven in, even though reinforced by two
cohorts--each the First of its Legion, and thus consisting of picked
men, like the old Grenadier companies of our own regiments. Though
these twelve hundred regulars, the very flower of the Roman army,
awaited the attack in such a formation that the front cohort was
closely supported by the rear, the Britons pushed their assault home,
and had "the extreme audacity" to charge clean through the ranks of
both, re-form behind, and charge back again, with great loss to
the Romans (whose leader, Quintus Labienus Durus, the Tribune, or
Divisional General in command of one of the legions, was slain),
and but little to themselves. Not till several more cohorts were
dispatched to the rescue did they at length retire.

F. 5.--This brilliant little affair speaks well both for the
discipline and the spirit of the patriot army; and Caesar ungrudgingly
recognizes both. He points out how far superior the British warriors
were to his own men, both in individual and tactical mobility. The
legionaries dare not break their ranks to pursue, under pain of being
cut off by their nimble enemies before they could re-form; and even
the cavalry found it no safe matter to press British chariots too far
or too closely. At any moment the crews might spring to earth, and the
pursuing horsemen find themselves confronted, or even surrounded, by
infantry in position. Moreover, the morale of the British army was so
good that it could fight in quite small units, each of which, by the
skilful dispositions of Caswallon, was within easy reach of one of his
series of "stations" (_i.e._ block-houses) disposed along the line of
march, where it could rest while the garrison turned out to take its
turn in the combat.

F. 6.--Against such an enemy it was obviously Caesar's interest to
bring on, as speedily as possible, a general action, in which he
might deliver a crushing blow. And, happily for him, their success had
rendered the Britons over-confident, so that they were even deluded
enough to imagine that they could face the full Roman force in open
field. Both sides, therefore, were eager to bring about the same
result. Next morning the small British squads which were hovering
around showed ostentatious reluctance to come to close quarters, so as
to draw the Romans out of their lines. Caesar gladly met their views,
and sent forward all his cavalry and three legions, who, on their
part, ostentatiously broke rank and began to forage. This was the
opportunity the Britons wanted--and Caesar wanted also. From every
side, in front, flank, and rear, the former "flew upon" their enemies,
so suddenly and so vigorously that ere the legions, prepared as they
were for the onset, could form, the very standards were all but taken.

F. 7.--But this time it was with legions and not with cohorts that
the enemy had to do. Their first desperate charge spent itself
before doing any serious damage to the masses of disciplined valour
confronting them, and the Romans, once in formation, were able to
deliver a counter-charge which proved quite irresistible. On every
side the Britons broke and fled; the main stream of fugitives unwisely
keeping together, so that the pursuers, cavalry and infantry alike,
were able to press the pursuit vigorously. No chance was given for a
rally; amid the confusion the chariot-crews could not even spring to
earth as usual; and the slaughter was such as to daunt the stoutest
patriot. The spell of Caswallon's luck was broken, and his auxiliaries
from other clans with one accord deserted him and dispersed homewards.
Never again throughout all history did the Britons gather a national
levy against Rome.

F. 8.--This break-up of the patriot confederacy seems, however, to
have been not merely the spontaneous disintegration of a routed army,
but a deliberately adopted resolution of the chiefs. Caesar speaks of
"their counsel." And this brings us to an interesting consideration.
Where did they take this counsel, and why did the fleeing hosts follow
one line of flight? And how was the line of the Roman advance so
accurately calculated upon by Caswallon that he was able to place
his "stations" along it beforehand? The answer is that there was an
obvious objective for which the Romans would be sure to make; indeed
there was almost certainly an obvious track along which they would be
sure to march. There is every reason to believe that most of the later
Roman roads were originally British trackways, broad green ribands of
turf winding through the land (such as the Icknield Way is still in
many parts of its course), and following the lines most convenient for

F. 9.--But, if this is so, then that convergence of these lines on
London, which is as marked a feature of the map of Roman Britain as it
is of our railway maps now, must have already been noticeable. And the
only possible reason for this must be found in the fact that already
London was a noted passage over the Thames. That an island in
mid-stream was the original _raison d'être_ of London Bridge is
apparent from the mass of buildings which is shown in every ancient
picture of that structure clustering between the two central spans.
This island must have been a very striking feature in primaeval days,
coming, as it did, miles below any other eyot on the river, and
must always have suggested and furnished a comparatively easy
crossing-place. Possibly even a bridge of some sort may have existed
in 54 B.C.; anyhow this crossing would have been alike the objective
of the invading, and the _point d'appui_ of the defending army. And
the line both of the Roman advance and of the British retreat would
be along the track afterwards known as the Kentish Watling Street. For
here again the late British legends which tell us of councils of war
held in London against Caesar, and fatal resolutions adopted there,
with every detail of proposer and discussion, are probably founded,
with gross exaggeration, upon a real kernel of historic truth. It was
actually on London that the Britons retired, and from London that the
gathering of the clans broke up, each to its own.


Passage of Thames--Submission of clans--Storm of Verulam--Last patriot
effort in Kent--Submission of Caswallon--Romans leave Britain--"Caesar

G. 1.--Caswallon, however, and his immediate realm still remained to
be dealt with. His first act, on resolving upon continued resistance,
would of course be to make the passage of the London tide-way
impossible for the Roman army; and Caesar, like William the Conqueror
after him, had to search up-stream for a crossing-place. He did not,
however, like William, have to make his way so far as Wallingford
before finding one. Deserters told him of a ford, though a difficult
one, practicable for infantry, not many miles distant. The traditional
spot, near Walton-on-Thames, anciently called Coway Stakes, may
very probably be the real place. Both name and stakes, however, have
probably, in spite of the guesses of antiquaries, no connection with
Caesar and his passage, but more prosaically indicate that here was a
passage for cattle (Coway = Cow Way) marked out by crossing stakes.

G. 2.--The forces of Caswallon were accompanying the Roman march on
the northern bank of the stream, and when Caesar came to the ford he
found them already in position [_instructas_] to dispute his passage
behind a _chevaux de frise_ of sharpened stakes, more of which, he
was told, were concealed by the water. If the Britons had shown
their wonted resolution this position must have been impregnable. But
Caswallon's men were disheartened and shaken by the slaughter on
the Kentish Downs and the desertion of their allies. Caesar
rightly calculated that a bold demonstration would complete their
demoralization. So it proved. The sight of the Roman cavalry plunging
into the steam, and the legionaries eagerly pressing on neck-deep in
water, proved altogether too much for their nerves. With one accord,
and without a blow, they broke and fled.[108]

G. 3.--Nor did Caswallon think it wise again to gather them. He had no
further hope of facing Caesar in pitched battle, and contented
himself with keeping in touch with the enemy with a flying column of
chariot-men some two thousand strong. His practice was to keep his men
a little off the road--there was still, be it noted, a _road_ along
which the Romans were marching--and drive off the flocks and herds
into the woods before the Roman advance. He made no attempt to attack
the legions, but if any foragers were bold enough to follow up the
booty thus reft from them, he was upon them in a moment. Such serious
loss was thus inflicted that Caesar had to forbid any such excursions,
and to content himself with laying waste the fields and farms in
immediate proximity to his route.

G. 4.--He was now in Caswallon's own country, and his presence there
encouraged the Trinobantian loyalists openly to throw off allegiance
to their conqueror and raise Mandubratius to his father's throne under
the protection of Rome; sending to Caesar at the same time provisions
for his men, and forty hostages whom he demanded of them. Caesar
in return gave strict orders to his soldiers against plundering or
raiding in their territory. This mingled firmness and clemency made
so favourable an impression that the submission of the Trinobantes was
followed by that of various adjoining clans, small and great, from the
Iceni of East Anglia to the little riverside septs of the Bibroci and
Ancalites, whose names may or may not be echoed in the modern Bray and
Henley. The Cassi (of Cassiobury) not only submitted, but guided the
Romans to Caswallon's own neighbouring stronghold in the forests near
St. Alban's. It was found to be a position of considerable natural
strength (probably on the site of the later Verulam), and well
fortified; but all the heart was out of the Cateuchlanians. When the
assailing columns approached to storm the place on two sides at once,
they hesitated, broke, and flung themselves over the ramparts on the
other sides in headlong flight. Caesar, however, was able to head
them, and his troops killed and captured large numbers, besides
getting possession of all the flocks and herds, which, as usual, had
been gathered for refuge within the stockade.

G. 5.--Caswallon himself, however, escaped, and now made one last bid
for victory. So great was still the influence of his prestige that,
broken as he was, he was able to prevail upon the clans of Kent
to make a sudden and desperate onset upon the Naval Station at
Richborough. All four of the chieftains beneath whose sway the county
was divided (Cingetorix, Canilius, Taximagulus, and Segonax) rose with
one accord at his summons. The attack, however, proved a mere flash
in the pan. Even before it was delivered, the garrison sallied
out vigorously, captured one of the British leaders, Lugotorix,
slaughtered the assailants wholesale, and crushed the whole movement
without the loss of a man. This final defeat of his last hopes broke
even Caswallon's sturdy heart. His followers slain, his lands wasted,
his allies in revolt, he bowed to the inevitable. Even now, however,
he did not surrender unconditionally, but besought Caesar's _protégé_,
the Atrebatian chieftain Commius, to negotiate terms with the

G. 6.--To Caesar this was no small relief. The autumn was coming
on, and Caswallon's guerrilla warfare might easily eat up all the
remainder of the summer, when he must needs be left alone, conquered
or unconquered, that the Roman army might get back to its winter
quarters on the Continent; more especially as ominous signs in Gaul
already predicted the fearful tempest of revolt which, that winter,
was to burst. Easy conditions were therefore imposed. Caswallon
pledged himself, as Lord Paramount, that Britain should pay an annual
tribute to the Roman treasury, and, as Chief of the Cateuchlani, that
he would leave Mandubratius on the Trinobantian throne. Hostages were
given, and the Roman forces returned with all convenient speed to the
coast; this time, presumably, crossing the Thames in the regular way
at London.

G. 7.--After a short wait, in vain expectation of the sixty ships
which Labienus had built in Gaul and which could not beat across the
Channel, Caesar crowded his troops and the hordes of British captives
on board as best he could, and being favoured by the weather, found
himself and them safe across, having worked out his great purpose, and
leaving a nominally conquered and tributary Britain behind him. This,
as we have seen from Cicero's letter, was on September 26, B.C. 54.

G. 8.--We have seen, too, that Cicero's cue was to belittle the
business. But this was far from being the view taken by the Roman "in
the street." To him Caesar's exploit was like those of the gods and
heroes of old; Hercules and Bacchus had done less, for neither had
passed the Ocean. The popular feeling of exultation in this new glory
added to Roman fame may be summed up in the words of the Anthologist
already quoted:

    Libera non hostem, non passa Britannia regem, Aeternum nostro
    quae procul orbe jacet; Felix adversis, et sorte oppressa
    secunda, Communis nobis et tibi Caesar erit. ["Free Britain,
    neither foe nor king that bears, That from our world lies
    far and far away, Lucky to lose, crushed by a happy doom,
    Henceforth, O Caesar, ours--and yours--will be."]

G. 9.--Caesar never set foot in Britain again, though he once saved
himself from imminent destruction by utilizing his British experiences
and passing his troops over a river in coracles of British build.[109]
He went his way to the desperate fighting, first of the great Gallic
revolt, then of the Civil War (with his own Labienus for the most
ferocious of his opponents), till he found himself the undisputed
master of the Roman world. But when he fell, upon the Ides of March
B.C. 44, it was mainly through the superhuman reputation won by
his invasion of Britain that he received the hitherto unheard of
distinction of a popular apotheosis, and handed down to his successors
for many a generation the title not only of Caesar, but of "Divus."




Britain after Julius Caesar--House of Commius--Inscribed coins--House
of Cymbeline--Tasciovan--Commians overthrown--Vain appeal to
Augustus--Ancyran Tablet--Romano-British trade--Lead-mining--British
fashions in Rome--Adminius banished by Cymbeline--Appeal to
Caligula--Futile demonstration--Icenian civil war--Vericus
banished--Appeal to Claudius--Invasion prepared.

A. 1.--With the departure of Caesar from its shores our knowledge of
the affairs of Britain becomes only less fragmentary than before he
reached them. We do not even learn how far the tribute he had imposed
continued to be paid. Most probably during the confusion of the Gallic
revolt and the Civil Wars it ceased altogether. In that confusion
Commius finally lost his continental principality of Arras, and had
to fly for his life into his British dominions. He only saved himself,
indeed, by an ingenious stratagem. When he reached the shore of Gaul
he found his ship aground in the tide-way. Nevertheless, by hoisting
all sail, he deceived the pursuing Romans into thinking themselves too
late till the rising tide permitted him really to put to sea.[110] The
effect of the extinction of Atrebatian power in Gaul was doubtless to
consolidate it in Britain, as when our English sovereigns lost their
hold on Normandy and Anjou, for we find that Commius reigned at least
over the eastern counties of Wessex, and transmitted his power to his
sons, Verica, Eppillus, and Tincommius, who seem to have shared
the kingdom between them. Tincommius, however, may possibly be, as
Professor Rhys suggests, merely a title, signifying the _Tanist_ (or
Heir) of Commius. In this case it would be that of Verica, who was
king after his father.[111]

A. 2.--The evidence for this is that in the district mentioned
British coins are found bearing these names. For now appears the first
inscribed British coinage; the inscriptions being all in Latin, a
sign of the abiding influence of the work of Caesar. And it is by that
light mainly that we know the little we do know of British history for
the next century. The coins are very numerous, and preserve for us
the names of no fewer than thirty several rulers (or states). They
are mostly of gold (though both silver and bronze also occur), and
are found over the greater part of the island, the southern and the
eastern counties being the richest. The inscriptions indicate, as
has already been mentioned,[112] a state of great political confusion
throughout the country. But they also bear testimony not only to the
dynasty of Commius, but to the rise of a much stronger power north of
the Thames.

A. 3.--That power was the House of Cunobelin, or Cinobellinus[113]
(Shakespeare's Cymbeline), who figures in the pages of Suetonius as
King of all Britain, insomuch that his fugitive son, Adminius, posed
before Caligula as the rightful sovereign of the whole island. His
coins were undoubtedly current everywhere south of Trent and east of
Severn, if not beyond those rivers. They are found in large numbers,
and of most varied devices, all showing the influence of classical
art. A head (probably his own portrait) is often on the obverse, and
on the reverse Apollo playing the lyre, or a Centaur, or a Victory, or
Medusa, or Pegasus, or Hercules. Other types show a warrior on horse
or foot, or a lion,[114] or a bull, or a wolf, or a wild boar; others
again a vine-leaf, or an ear of bearded wheat. On a very few is found
the horse, surviving from the old Macedonian mintage.[115] And
all bear his own name, sometimes in full, CVNOBELINVS REX, oftener
abbreviated in various ways.

A. 4.--But the coins do more than testify to the widespread power of
Cymbeline himself. They show us that he inherited much of it from his
father. This prince, whose name was Tasciovan, is often associated
with his son in the inscriptions, and the son is often described as
TASCIIOVANI F. (_Filius_) or TASCIOVANTIS. There are besides a large
number of coins belonging to Tasciovan alone. And these tell us where
he reigned. They are struck (where the mint is recorded) either at
Segontium[116] or at Verulam. The latter is pretty certainly the town
which had sprung up on the site of Caswallon's stronghold, so that
we may reasonably conclude that Tasciovan was the successor of the
patriot hero on the Cateuchlanian throne--very probably his son.
But Cymbeline's coins are struck at the _Trinobantian_ capital,
Camelodune,[117] which we know to have been the royal city of his son
Caratac (or Caradoc) at the Claudian conquest.

A. 5.--It would seem, therefore, that, Caesar's mandate to the
contrary notwithstanding, Caswallon's clan, who were now called
(perhaps from his name), Cattivellauni, had again conquered the
Trinobantes, deposing, and probably slaying, Mandubratius.[118] This
would be under Tasciovan, who gave the land to his son Cymbeline, and,
at a later date, must have subdued the Atrebatian power in the south.
The sons of Commius were, as is shown by Sir John Evans, contemporary
with Tasciovan. But, by and by, we find Epaticcus, _his_ son, and
Adminius, apparently his grandson, reigning in their realm, the latter
taking Kent, the former the western districts. The previous Kentish
monarch was named Dumnovellanus, and appears as DAMNO BELLA on the
Ancyran Tablet. This wonderful record of the glories of Augustus
mentions, _inter alia_, that certain British kings, of whom this
prince was one, fled to his protection. The tablet is, unhappily,
mutilated at the point where their names occur, but that of another
begins with TIM--probably, as Sir John Evans suggests, Tin-Commius.
Adminius also was afterwards exiled by his own father, Cymbeline, and
in like manner appealed to Caesar--Caligula--in 40 A.D.

A. 6.--Nothing came of either appeal. Augustus did indeed, according
to Dio Cassius, meditate completing his "father's" work, and (in B.C.
34) entered Gaul with a view to invading Britain. But the political
troubles which were to culminate at Actium called him back, and
he contented himself with laying a small duty on the trade between
Britain and Gaul. Tin, as before, formed the staple export of our
island, and other metals seem now to have been added--iron from Sussex
and lead from Somerset. Doubtless also the pearls from our native
oysters (of which Caesar had already dedicated a breastplate to his
ancestral Venus) found their way to Rome, though of far less value
than the Oriental jewel, being of a less pure white.[119] Besides
these we read of "ivory bracelets and necklets, amber and glass
ornaments, and such-like rubbish,"[120] which doubtless found a sale
amongst the _virtuosi_ of Rome, as like products of savage industry
from Africa or Polynesia find a sale amongst our _virtuosi_ nowadays.
Meanwhile, Roman dignity was saved by considering these duties to be
in lieu of the unpaid tribute imposed by Caesar, and the island was
declared by courtly writers to be already in practical subjection.
"Some of the chiefs [Greek: dunastai] have gained the friendship of
Augustus, and dedicated offerings in the Capitol.... The island
would not be worth holding, and could never pay the expenses of a

A. 7.--At the same time the Romans of the day evidently took a very
special interest in everything connected with Britain. The leaders of
Roman society, like Maecenas, drove about in British chariots,[122]
smart ladies dyed their hair red in imitation of British
warriors,[123] tapestry inwoven with British figures was all the
fashion,[124] and constant hopes were expressed by the poets that,
before long, so interesting a land might be finally incorporated in
the Roman Empire.[125]

A. 8.--Augustus was too prudent to be stirred up by this "forward"
policy; which, indeed, he had sanctioned once too often in the fatal
invasion of Germany by Varus. But the diseased brain of Caligula _was_
for a moment fired with the ambition of so vast an enterprise. He
professed that the fugitive Adminius had ceded to him the kingship of
the whole island, and sent home high-flown dispatches to that effect.
He had no fleet, but drew up his army in line of battle on the Gallic
shore, while all wondered what mad freak he was purposing; then
suddenly bade every man fill his helmet with shells as "spoils of the
Ocean" to be dedicated in the Capitol. Finally he commemorated this
glorious victory by the erection of a lofty lighthouse,[126] probably
at the entrance of Boulogne harbour.

A. 9.--It was clear, however, that sooner or later Britain must be
drawn into the great system so near her, and the next reign furnished
the needful occasion. Yet another exiled British pretender appealed
to the Emperor to see him righted--this time one Vericus. His name
suggests that he may have been Verica son of Commius; but the theory
of Professor Rhys and Sir John Evans seems more probable--that he was
a Prince of the Iceni. The earliest name found on the coins of that
clan is Addeomarus (Aedd Mawr, or Eth the Great, of British legend),
who was contemporary with Tasciovan. After this the tribe probably
became subject to Cymbeline, at whose death[127] the chieftainship
seems to have been disputed between two pretenders, Vericus
and Antedrigus; and on the success of the latter (presumably by
Cateuchlanian favour) the former fled to Rome. Claudius, who now sat
on the Imperial throne, eagerly seized the opportunity for the renown
he was always coveting, and in A.D. 44 set in motion the forces of the
Empire to subdue our island.


Aulus Plautius--Reluctance to embark--Narcissus--Passage of
Channel--Landing at Portchester--Strength of expedition--Vespasian's
legion--British defeats--Line of Thames held--Arrival of
Claudius--Camelodune taken--General submission of island.

B. 1.--The command of the expedition was entrusted to Aulus Plautius
Laelianus, a distinguished Senator, of Consular rank. But the
reluctance of the soldiery to advance "beyond the limits of this
mortal world" [Greek: _exô tas ohikoumenês_], and entrust themselves
to the mysterious tides of the ocean which was held to bound it,
caused him weeks of delay on the shores of Gaul. Nor could anything
move them, till they found this malingering likely to expose them
to the degradation of a quasi-imperial scolding from Narcissus, the
freed-man favourite of Claudius, who came down express from Rome as
the Emperor's mouthpiece.[128] To bear reproof from one who had been
born a slave was too much for Roman soldiers. When Narcissus mounted
the tribune to address them in the Emperor's name, his very first
words were at once drowned by a derisive shout from every mouth
of "_Io Saturnalia_!" the well-known cry with which Roman slaves
inaugurated their annual Yule-tide licence of aping for the day the
characters of their masters. The parade tumultuously broke off, and
the troops hurried down to the beach to carry out the commands of
their General--who was at least free-born.

B, 2.--The passage of the Channel was effected in three separate
fleets, possibly at three separate points, and the landing on our
shores was unopposed. The Britons, doubtless, had been lulled to
security by the tidings of the mutinous temper in the camp of the
invaders, and were quite unprepared for the very unexpected result
of the mission of Narcissus. It seems likely, moreover, that the
disembarkation was made much further to the west than they would have
looked for. The voyage is spoken of as long, and amid its discomforts
the drooping spirits of the soldiery were signally cheered by a
meteor of special brilliance which one night darted westwards as their
harbinger. Moreover we find that when the Romans did land, their first
success was a defeat of the Dobuni, subject allies of the House
of Cymbeline, who, as we gather from Ptolemy, dwelt in what is now
Southern Gloucestershire.[129] This objective rather points to their
landing-place having been in Portsmouth harbour[130] (_the_ Port, as
its name still reminds us, of Roman Britain), where the undoubtedly
Roman site of Portchester may well mark the exact spot where the
expedition first set foot on shore.

B. 3.--Besides an unknown force of Gallic auxiliaries, its strength
comprised four veteran legions, one (the Ninth _Hispanica_)[131] from
the Danube frontier, the rest (Twentieth, Fourteenth, and Second) from
the Rhine. This last, an "Augustan"[132] legion, was commanded by the
future Emperor Vespasian--a connection destined to have an important
influence on the _pronunciamento_ which, twenty-five years later,
placed him on the throne.[133] As yet he was only a man of low family,
whom favouritism was held to have hurried up the ladder of promotion
more rapidly than his birth warranted.[134] Serving under him as
Military Tribunes were his brother Sabinus and his son Titus; and in
this British campaign all three Flavii are said to have distinguished
themselves,[135] especially at the passage of an unnamed river, where
the Britons made an obstinate stand. The ford was not passed till
after three days' continuous fighting, of which the issue was finally
decided by the "Celtic" auxiliaries swimming the stream higher up, and
stampeding the chariot-horses tethered behind the British lines.

B. 4.--What this stream may have been is a puzzle.[136] Dion Cassius
brings it in after a victory over the sons of Cymbeline, Caradoc (or
Caractacus, as historians commonly call him) and Togodumnus, wherein
the latter was slain. And he adds that from its banks the Britons fell
back upon their next line of defence, the _tide-way_ on the Thames. He
tells us that, though tidal, the river was, at this point, fordable at
low water for those who knew the shallows; and incidentally mentions
that at no great distance there was even a bridge over it. But it was
bordered by almost impassable[137] swamps. It must be remembered that
before the canalizing of the Thames the influence of the tide
was perceptible at least as high as Staines, where was also a
crossing-place of immemorial antiquity. And hereabouts may very
probably have been the key of the British position, a position so
strong that it brought Plautius altogether to a standstill. Not till
overwhelming reinforcements, including even an elephant corps, were
summoned from Rome, with Claudius in person at their head, was a
passage forced. The defence then, however, collapsed utterly, and
within a fortnight of his landing, Claudius was able to re-embark for
Rome, after taking Camelodune, and securing for the moment, without
the loss of a man,[138] as it would seem, the nominal submission of
the whole island, including even the Orkneys.[139]


Claudius triumphs--Gladiatorial shows--Last stand of
Britons--Gallantry of Titus--Ovation of Plautius--Distinctions
bestowed--Triumphal arch--Commemorative coinage--Conciliatory
policy--British worship of Claudius--Cogidubnus--Attitude of
clans--Britain made Imperial Province.

C. 1.--The success thus achieved was evidently felt to be something
quite exceptionally brilliant and important. Not once, as was usual,
but four several times was Claudius acclaimed "Imperator"[140] even
before he left our shores; and in after years these acclamations
were renewed at Rome as often as good news of the British war
arrived there, till, ere Claudius died, he had received no fewer
than twenty-one such distinctions, each signalized by an issue of
commemorative coinage. His "Britannic triumph" was celebrated on a
scale of exceptional magnificence. In addition to the usual display,
he gave his people the unique spectacle of their Emperor climbing the
ascent to the Capitol not in his triumphal car, nor even on foot, but
on his knees (as pilgrims yet mount the steps of the Ara Coeli), in
token of special gratitude to the gods for so signal an extension
of the glory and the Empire of Rome. In the gladiatorial shows which
followed, he presided in full uniform [_paludatus_],[141] with his son
(whose name, like his own, a _Senatus consultum_ had declared to
be _Britannicus_)[142] on his knee.[143] One of the spectacles
represented the storm of a British _oppidum_ and the surrender of
British kings. The kings were probably real British chieftains, and
the storm was certainly real, with real Britons, real blood, real
slaughter, for Claudius went to every length in this direction.

C. 2.--The narrative of Suetonius[144] connects these shows with the
well-known tale of the unhappy gladiators who fondly hoped that a
kind word from the Emperor meant a reprieve of their doom. He had
determined to surpass all his predecessors in his exhibition of a
sea-fight, and had provided a sheet of water large enough for the
manoeuvres of real war-galleys, carrying some five hundred men
apiece.[145] The crews, eleven thousand in all, made their usual
preliminary march past his throne, with the usual mournful acclaim,
"_Ave Caesar! Salutant te morituri_!" Claudius responded, "_Aut non_:"
and these two words were enough to inspire the doomed ranks with hopes
of mercy. With one accord they refused to play their part, and he had
to come down in person and solemnly assure them that if his show was
spoilt he would exterminate every man of them "with fire and sword,"
before they would embark. Once entered upon the combat, however, they
fought desperately; so well, indeed, that at its close the survivors
were declared exempt from any further performance. Such was the fate
which awaited those who dared to defend their freedom against the
Fortune of Rome, and such the death died by many a brave Briton for
the glory of his subjugators. Dion Cassius[146] tells us that
Aulus Plautius made a special boast of the numbers so butchered in
connection with his own "Ovation."

C. 3.--This ceremony was celebrated A.D. 47, two years after that of
Claudius. Plautius had remained behind in Britain to stamp out the
last embers of resistance,--a task which all but proved fatal to
Vespasian, who got hemmed in by the enemy. He was only saved by the
personal heroism and devotion of Titus, who valiantly made in to his
father's rescue, and succeeded in cutting him out. This seems to
have been in the last desperate stand made by the Britons during
this campaign. After this, with Togodumnus slain, Caradoc probably a
fugitive in hiding, and the best and bravest of the land slaughtered
either in the field or in the circus at Rome, British resistance
was for the moment utterly crushed out. Claudius continued his
demonstrations of delight; when Plautius neared Rome he went out in
person to meet him,[147] raised him when he bent the knee in homage,
and warmly shook hands with him[148] [Greek:[kalos diacheirisas]];
afterwards himself walking on his left hand in the triumphal
procession along the Via Sacra.[149]

C. 4.--Rewards were at the same time showered on the inferior
officers. Cnaeus Ostorius Geta, the hero of the first riverside fight
in Britain, was allowed to triumph in consular fashion, though not yet
of consular rank; and an inscription found at Turin speaks of collars,
gauntlets and phalera bestowed on one Caius Gavius, along with
a golden wreath for Distinguished Service. Another, found in
Switzerland,[150] records the like wreath assigned to Julius Camillus,
a Military Tribune of the Fourth Legion, together with the decoration
of the _Hasta Pura_ (something, it would seem, in the nature of the
Victoria Cross); which was also, according to Suetonius,[151] given to
Posides, one of the Emperor's favourite freedmen.

C. 5.--To Claudius himself, besides his triumph, the Senate voted
two triumphal arches,[152] one in Rome, the other in the Gallic port
whence he had embarked for Britain. Part of the inscription on the
former of these was found in 1650 on the site where it stood (near
the Palazzo Sciarra), and is still to be seen in the gardens of the
Barberini Palace. It runs as follows (the conjectural restoration of
the lost portions which have been added being enclosed in brackets):


"To Tiberius Claudius Caesar, Augustus, Pontifex Maximus, holding
for the 9th time the authority of Tribune, Consul for the 6th time,
acclaimed Imperator for the 16th, the Senate and People of Rome [have
dedicated this arch]. Because that without the loss of a man he hath
subdued the Kings of Britain, and hath been the first to bring under
her barbarous clans under our sway." Claudius also affixed to the
walls of the imperial house on the Palatine (which was destined
to give the name of "palace" to royal abodes for all time),[153] a
"_corona navalis_"--a circlet in which the usual radiations were made
to resemble the sails, etc. of ships--in support of his proud claim
to have tamed the Ocean itself [_quasi domiti oceani_] and brought it
under Roman sway: "_Et jam Romano cingimur Oceano_."[154]

C. 6.--As usual, coins were struck to commemorate the occasion, the
earliest of the long series of Roman coins relating to Britain. They
bear on the obverse the laureated head of Claudius to the right, with
the superscription TI. CLAVD. CAESAR. AVG. P.M. TR. P. VIIII. IMP.
XVI. On the reverse is an equestrian figure, between two trophies,
surmounting a triumphal arch, over which is inscribed the legend DE.
BRITAN. This coin, being of gold, was struck not by the Senate (who
regulated the bronze issue), but by the Imperial mint, and dates from
the year 46, when Claudius was clothed for the ninth time with the
authority of Tribune. By that time the arch was doubtless completed,
and the coin may well show what it was actually like. Another coin,
also bearing the words DE. BRITAN., shows Claudius in his triumphal
chariot with an eagle on his sceptre. Even poor little Britannicus,
who never came to his father's throne, being set aside through the
intrigues of his stepmother Agrippina and finally poisoned (A.D. 55)
by Nero, had a coin of his own on this occasion issued by the
Senate and inscribed TI. CLAVD. CAESAR. AVG. F. [_Augusti Filius_]

C.7.--Seneca, whose own connection with Britain was that of a grinding
usurer,[155] speaks with intense disgust of the conciliatory attitude
of Claudius towards the populations, or more probably the kinglets,
who had submitted to his sway. He purposed, it seems, even to see some
of them raised to Roman citizenship [_Britannos togatos videre_].
That the grateful provincials should have raised a temple to him at
Camelodune, and rendered him worship as an incarnate deity, adds to
the offence. And, writing on the Emperor's death, the philosopher
points with evident satisfaction to the wretched fate of the man who
triumphed over Britain and the Ocean, only to fall at last a victim to
the machinations of his own wife.

C. 8.--An interesting confirmation of this information as to the
relations between Claudius and his British subjects is to be found in
a marble tablet[156] discovered at Chichester, which commemorates
the erection of a temple (dedicated to Neptune and Minerva) for
the welfare of the Divine [_i.e._ Imperial] Household by a Guild of
Craftsmen [_collegium fabrorum_] on a site given by Pudens the son
of Pudentinus;[157] all under the authority of Tiberius Claudius
Cogidubnus, at once a native British kinglet and Imperial Legate in
Britain. This office would imply Roman citizenship, as would also the
form of his name. That (doubtless on his enfranchisement) he should
have been allowed to take such a distinguished _nomen_ and _praenomen_
as Tiberius Claudius marks the special favour in which he was held by
the Emperor.[158] To this witness is also borne by Tacitus, who says
that certain states in Britain were placed under Cogidubnus not as a
tributary Kingdom but as a Roman Province. Hence his title of Imperial
Legate. These states were doubtless those of the Cantii and Regni in
Kent, Surrey and Sussex.

C. 9.--The Iceni, on the other hand, were subject allies of Rome, with
Vericus, in all probability, on the throne.[159] The Atrebates would
seem also to have been "friendlies." But the great mass of the British
clans were chafing under the humiliation and suffering which the
invaders had wrought for them, and evidently needed a strong hand
to keep them down. Under the Empire provinces requiring military
occupation were committed not to Pro-consuls chosen by the Senate, but
to Pro-praetors nominated by the Emperor, and were called "Imperial"
as opposed to "Senatorial" governments.[160] Britain was now
accordingly declared an Imperial Province, and Ostorius Scapula sent
by Claudius to administer it as Pro-praetor.


Ostorius Pro-praetor--Pacification of Midlands--Icenian revolt--Camb's
dykes--Iceni crushed--Cangi--Brigantes--Silurian war--Storm of
Caer Caradoc--Treachery of Cartismandua--Caradoc at Rome--Death of
Ostorius--Uriconium and Caerleon--Britain quieted--Death of Claudius.

D. 1.--When Ostorius, in A.D. 50, reached Britain he found things in a
very disturbed state. The clans which had submitted to the Romans were
being raided by their independent neighbours, who calculated that
this new governor would not venture on risking his untried levies in a
winter campaign against them. Ostorius, however, was astute enough to
realize that such a first impression of his rule would be fatal, and,
by a sudden dash with a flying column (_citas cohortes_), cut the
raiders to pieces. As usual the Britons hoisted the white flag in
their familiar manner, making a surrender which they had no intention
whatever of keeping to longer than suited their plans; and they
were proportionately disgusted when Ostorius set to work at a real
pacification of the Midlands, constructing forts at strategic points
along the Trent and Severn, and requiring all natives whatsoever
within this Roman Pale to give up their arms.

D. 2.--This demand the Britons looked upon as an intolerable
dishonour, even as it seemed to the Highlanders two centuries ago.
The first to resent it were the chieftain and clan whose alliance with
Rome had been the _raison d'être_ of the Conquest, Vericus and his
Iceni.[161] Was this brand of shame to be their reward for bringing
in the invaders? They received the mandate of Ostorius with a burst of
defiance, and hastily organized a league of the neighbouring tribes
to resist so intolerable a degradation. Before their allies could
come in, however, Ostorius was upon them, and it became a matter of
defending their own borders.

D. 3.--The spot they selected for resistance was a space shut in by
earthworks _(agresti aggere)_ accessible only by one narrow entrance.
This description exactly applies to the locality where we should look
for an Icenian Thermopylae. The clan dwelt, as we have said, in East
Anglia, their borders to the south being the marshy course of the
Stour, running from the primaeval forest that capped the "East Anglian
Heights," and, to the west, the Cambridgeshire Fens. They thus lived
within a ring fence almost unassailable. Only in one spot was there an
entrance. Between the Fen and the Forest stretched a narrow strip of
open turf, some three or four miles across, affording easy marching.
And along it ran their own great war-path, the Icknield Street,
extending from the heart of their realm right away to the Thames
at Goring. It never became a Roman road, though a few miles are now
metalled. Along most of its course it remains what it was in British
days, a broad, green track seamed with scores of rut-marks. And even
where it has been obliterated, its course may be traced by the
names of Ickborough in Norfolk, Iclingham in Suffolk, Ickleton in
Cambridgeshire, and Ickleford in Hertfordshire.[162]

D. 4.--The Iceni had long ago taken care to fortify this approach to
their land. The whole space between fen and forest in the Cam valley
was cut across by four (or five) great dykes which may still be
traced, constructed for defence against invaders from the westward.
Of these, the two innermost are far more formidable than the rest, the
"Fleam Dyke" near Cambridge, and the "Devil's Ditch" by Newmarket.
The outer fosse of each is from twenty to thirty feet deep; and the
rampart, when topped by a stockade, must have constituted an obstacle
to troops unprovided with artillery which the Iceni might justifiably
think insuperable. The "one narrow entrance" along the whole length
of the dykes (five miles and ten miles respectively) is where the
Icknield Way cuts through them.

D. 5.--Here then, probably, the Icenian levies confidently awaited
the onslaught of Ostorius--the more confidently inasmuch as he had
not waited to call up his legionaries from their winter quarters, but
attacked only with the irregulars whom he had been employing against
the marauders in the midlands. The Iceni, doubtless, imagined that
such troops would be unequal to assaulting their dyke at all. But
Ostorius was no ordinary leader. Such was the enthusiasm which he
inspired in his troops that they surprised the revolters by attacking
along the whole line of the Fleam Dyke at once, and that with such
impetuosity that in a moment they were over it. The hapless Iceni were
now caught in a death-trap. Behind them the Devil's Ditch barred all
retreat save through its one narrow entrance, and those who failed to
force their way through the mad crush there could only fight and die
with the courage of despair. "Many a deed of desperate valour did
they," says Tacitus [_multa et clara facinora_], and the Romans
displayed like courage; the son of Ostorius winning in the fray the
"civic crown"[163] awarded for the rescue of a Roman citizen. But no
quarter seems to have been given, and the flower of the Icenian tribe
perished there to a man.

D. 6.--This slaughter effectually scotched the rising which the
Icenians were hoping to organize. All Central Britain submitted, and,
we may presume, was quietly disarmed; though the work cannot have been
very effectually done, as these same tribes were able to rise under
Boadicea twelve years later. The indefatigable Ostorius next led
his men against the Cangi in North Wales[164] (who seem to have been
stirred to revolt by the Icenian Prince Antedrigus), and gained much
booty, for the Britons dared not venture upon a battle, and had
no luck in their various attempts at surprise. But before he quite
reached the Irish Sea he was recalled by a disturbance amongst the
Brigantes, which by a judicious mixture of firmness and clemency he
speedily suppressed. And all this he did without employing a single

D. 7.--But neither firmness nor clemency availed to put an end to the
desperate struggle for freedom maintained by the one clan in Britain
which still held out against the Roman yoke. The Silurians of South
Wales were not to be subdued without a regular campaign which was to
tax the Legions themselves to the utmost. Naturally brave, stubborn,
and with a passionate love of liberty, they had at this juncture a
worthy leader, for Caradoc was at their head. We hear nothing of
his doings between the first battle against Aulus Plautius, when his
brother Togodumnus fell, leaving him the sole heir of Cymbeline, until
we find him here. But we may be pretty sure that he was the animating
spirit of the resistance which so long checked the conquerors on
the banks of the Thames, and that he took no part in the general
submission to Claudius. Probably he led an outlaw life in the forest,
stirring up all possible resistance to the Roman arms, till finally
he found himself left with this one clan of all his father's subjects
still remaining faithful.

D. 8.--But he never thought of surrender. He was everywhere amongst
his followers, says Tacitus, exhorting them to resist to the death,
reminding them how Caswallon had "driven out" the great Julius,
and binding one and all by a solemn national covenant [_gentili
religione_] never to yield "either for wound or weapon." Ostorius had
to bring against him the whole force he could muster, even calling out
the veterans newly settled at the Colony[165] of Camelodune. Caradoc
and his Silurians, on their part, did not wait at home for the attack,
but moved northwards into the territory of the Ordovices, who at least
sympathized if they did not actually aid. Here he entrenched himself
upon a mountain, very probably that Caer Caradoc, near Shrewsbury,
which still bears his name. Those who know the ground will not wonder
that Ostorius hesitated at assaulting so impregnable a position. His
men, however, were eager for the attack. "Nothing," they cried, "is
impregnable to the brave." The legionaries stormed the hill on
one side, the auxiliaries on the other; and once hand to hand, the
mail-clad Romans had a fearful advantage against defenders who wore
no defensive armour, nor even helmets. The Britons broke and fled,
Caradoc himself seeking refuge amongst the Brigantes of the north.

D. 9.--At this time the chief power in this tribe was in the hands of
a woman, Cartismandua, the heiress to the throne, with whose name and
that of her Prince Consort scandal was already busy. The disturbances
amongst the clan which Ostorius had lately suppressed were probably
connected with her intrigues. Anyhow she posed as the favourite and
friend of the Romans; and now showed her loyalty by arresting the
national hero and handing him over to the enemy. With his family
and fellow-captives he was [A.D. 52] deported to Rome, and publicly
exhibited by the Emperor in his chains, as the last of the Britons,
while the Praetorian Guards stood to their arms as he passed.

D. 10.--According to Roman precedent the scene should have closed with
a massacre of the prisoners. But while the executioners awaited the
order to strike, Caradoc stepped forward with a spirited appeal, the
substance of which there is every reason to believe is truthfully
recorded by Tacitus. Disdaining to make the usual pitiful petitions
for mercy, he boldly justified his struggle for his land and crown,
and reminded Claudius that he had now an exceptional opportunity for
winning renown. "Kill me, as all expect, and this affair will soon be
forgotten; spare me, and men will talk of your clemency from age to
age." Claudius was touched; and even the fierce Agrippina, who, to
the scandal of old Roman sentiment, was seated beside him at the
saluting-point "as if she had been herself a General," and who must
have reminded Caradoc of Cartismandua, was moved to mercy. Caradoc was
spared, and assigned a residence in Italy; and the Senate, believing
the war at an end with his capture, voted to Ostorius "triumphal
insignia"[166]--the highest honour attainable by any Roman below
Imperial rank.[167]

D. 11.--But even without their King the stubborn clan still stood
desperately at bay. Their pertinacious resistance in every pass and
on every hill-top of their country at length fairly wore Ostorius out.
The incessant fatigues of the campaign broke down his health, and he
died [A.D. 54] on the march; to the ferocious joy of the Silurians,
who boasted that their valour had made an end of the brave enemy who
had vowed to "extinguish their very name,"[168] no less than if they
had slain him upon the field of battle.

D. 12.--Before he died, however, he had curbed them both to north and
south by the establishment of strong Roman towns at Uriconium on the
Severn (named after the neighbouring Wrekin), and Isca Silurum at
the mouth of the Usk. The British name of the latter place, Caerleon
[Castra Legionum], still reminds us that it was one of the great
legionary stations of the island, while the abundant inscriptions
unearthed upon the site, tell us that here the Second Legion had its
head-quarters till the last days of the Roman occupation.[169]

D. 13.--The unremitting pressure of these two garrisons crushed out at
last the Silurian resistance. The fighting men of the clan must
indeed have been almost wholly killed off during these four years
of murderous warfare. Thus Avitus Didius Gallus, the successor of
Ostorius, though himself too old to take the field, was able to
announce to Claudius that he had completed the subjugation of Britain.
The Silurians after one last effort, in which they signally defeated
an entire Legion, lay in the quietude of utter exhaustion; and though
Cartismandua caused some little trouble by putting away her husband
Venusius and raising a favourite to the throne, the matter was
compromised by Roman intervention; and Claudius lived to hear that the
island was, at last, peacefully submissive to his sway. Then Agrippina
showed herself once more the Cartismandua of Rome, and her son Nero
sat upon the throne of her poisoned husband [A.D. 55].


Neronian misgovernment--Seneca--Prasutagus--Boadicea's revolt--Sack
of Camelodune--Suetonius in Mona--"Druidesses"--Sack of London and
Verulam--Boadicea crushed at Battle Bridge--Peace of Petronius.

E. 1.--Under Nero the unhappy Britons first realized what it was to be
Roman provincials. Though Julius Caesar and Augustus had checked the
grossest abuses of the Republican proconsulates, yet enough of the
evil tradition remained to make those abuses flourish with renewed
vigour under such a ruler as Nero. The state of things which ensued
can only be paralleled with that so vividly described by Macaulay in
his lurid picture of the oppression of Bengal under Warren Hastings.
The one object of every provincial governor was to exploit his
province in his own pecuniary interest and that of his friends at
Rome. Requisitions and taxes were heaped on the miserable inhabitants
utterly beyond their means, with the express object of forcing them
into the clutches of the Roman money-lenders, whose frightful terms
were, in turn, enforced by military licence.

E. 2.--The most virtuous and enlightened citizens were not ashamed
thus to wring exorbitant interest from their victims. Cicero tells
us[170] how no less austere a patriot than Brutus thus exacted from
the town of Salamis in Cyprus, 48 per cent. compound interest, and,
after starving five members of the municipality to death in default of
payment, was mortally offended because he, Cicero, as proconsul, would
not exercise further military pressure for his ends.

E. 3.--The part thus played in Cyprus by Brutus was played in Britain
by Seneca, another of the choice examples of the highest Roman virtue.
By a series of blood-sucking transactions[171] he drove the Britons
to absolute despair, his special victim being Prasutagus, now Chief of
the Iceni, presumably set up by the Romans on the suppression of the
revolt under Vericus. As a last chance of saving any of his wealth for
his children, Prasutagus, by will, made the Emperor his co-heir.
This, however, only hastened the ruin of his family. His property
was pounced upon by the harpies of Seneca and Nero, with the
Procurator[172] of the Province, Catus Decimus, at their head, his kin
sold into slavery, his daughters outraged, and his wife Boadicea, or,
more correctly, _Boudicca_, brutally scourged. This was in A.D. 61.

E. 4.--A convulsive outburst of popular rage and despair followed.
The wrongs of Boadicea kindled the Britons to madness, and she found
herself at once at the head of a rising comprising all the clans of
the east and the Midlands. Half-armed as they were, their desperate
onset carried all before it. The first attack was made upon the hated
Colony at Camelodune, where the great Temple of "the God" Claudius,
rising high above the town, bore an ever-visible testimony to Rome's
enslavement of Britain,[173] and whence the lately-established
veterans were wont, by the connivance of the Procurator, to treat the
neighbourhood with utterly illegal military licence, sacking houses,
ravaging fields, and abusing their British fellow-subjects as "caitiff

E. 5.--These marauders were, however, as great cowards as bullies, and
were now trembling before the approach of vengeance. How completely
they were cowed is shown by the gloomy auguries which passed from
lip to lip as foreshadowing the coming woe. The statue of Victory
had fallen on its face, women frantic with fear rushed about wildly
shrieking "Ruin!", strange moans and wailings were heard in Courthouse
and Theatre, on the Thames estuary the ruddy glow of sunset looked
like blood and flame, the sand-ripples and sea-wrack left by the ebb
suggested corpses; everything ministered to their craven fear.

E. 6.--So hopeless was the demoralization that the very commonest
precautions were neglected. The town was unfortified, yet these old
soldiers made no attempt at entrenchment; even the women and children
were not sent away while the roads were yet open. And when the storm
burst on the town the hapless non-combatants were simply abandoned to
massacre, while the veterans, along with some two hundred badly-armed
recruits (the only help furnished by their precious Procurator, who
himself fled incontinently to Gaul), shut themselves up in the Temple,
in hopes of thus saving their own skins till the Ninth Legion, which
was hastening to their aid, should arrive.

E. 7.--It is a satisfaction to read that in this they were
disappointed. Next day their refuge was stormed, and every soul within
put to the sword. The Temple itself, and all else at Camelodune, was
burnt to the ground, and the wicked Colony blotted off the face of the
earth. The approaching Legion scarcely fared better. The victorious
Britons swept down upon it on the march, cut to pieces the entire
infantry, and sent the cavalry in headlong flight to London, where
Suetonius Paulinus, the Governor of Britain, was now mustering such
force as he could make to meet the overwhelming onslaught.

E. 8.--When the outbreak took place he had been far away, putting down
the last relics of the now illicit Druidism in the island of Mona or
Anglesey. The enterprise was one which demanded a considerable display
of force, for the defenders of the island fought with fanatical
frenzy, the priests and priestesses alike taking part in the fray,
and perishing at last in their own sacrificial fires, when the passage
over the Menai Straits was made good.

E. 9--It is noticeable that in Mona alone do we meet with
"Druidesses." Female ministers of religion, whether priestesses or
prophetesses, are always exceptional, and usually mark a survival from
some very primitive cult. The Pythoness at Delphi, and the Vestals at
Rome, obviously do so. And amongst the races of Gaul and Britain
the same fact is testified to by such female ministrations being
invariably confined to far western islands. Pytheas, as he passed Cape
Finisterre (in Spain) by night, heard a choir of women worshipping
"Mother Earth and her Daughter"[175] with shrill yells and music.
A little further he tells of the barbarous rites observed by the
_Samnitae_ or _Amnitae_[176] in an island near the mouth of the Loire,
on which no male person might ever set foot; and of another island at
the extreme point of Gaul, already known as Uxisana (Ushant), where
nine virgin sorceresses kept alight the undying fire on their sacred
hearth and gave oracular responses. These cults clearly represented a
much older worship than Druidism, though the latter may very probably
have taken them under its shadow (as in India so many aboriginal rites
are recognized and adopted by modern Brahmanism). And the priestesses
in Mona were, in like manner, not "Druidesses" at all, but
representatives of some more primitive cult, already driven from the
mainland of Britain and finding a last foothold in this remote island.

E. 10.--The stamping out of the desperate fanaticism of Mona was
barely accomplished, when tidings were brought to Suetonius of
Boadicea's revolt. By forced marches he reached London before her,
only to find himself too weak, after the loss of the Ninth Legion, to
hold it. London, though no Colony, was already the largest and most
thriving of the Roman settlements in Britain, and piteous was the
dismay of the citizens when Suetonius bade the city be evacuated.
But neither tears nor prayers could postpone his march, and such
non-combatants as from age or infirmity could not retire with his
column, were massacred by the furious Britons even as those at
Camelodune. Next came the turn of Verulam, the Roman town on the
site of Tasciovan's stronghold,[177] where like atrocities marked the
British triumph. Every other consideration was lost in the mad lust of
slaughter. No prisoners were taken, no spoil was made, no ransom was
accepted; all was fire, sword, and hideous torturing. Tacitus declares
that, to his own knowledge,[178] no fewer than seventy thousand Romans
and pro-Romans thus perished in this fearful day of vengeance; the
spirit of which has been caught by Tennyson, with such true poetic
genius, in his 'Boadicea.'

E. 11.--Suetonius, however, now felt strong enough to risk a battle.
The odds were enormous, for the British forces were estimated at
two hundred and thirty thousand, while his own were barely ten
thousand--only one legion (the Fourteenth) with the cavalry of the
Twentieth. (Where its infantry was does not appear: it may have been
left behind in the west.) The Ninth had ceased to exist, and the
Second did not arrive from far-off Caerleon till too late for the
fight. The strength of legionary sentiment is shown by the fact that
its commander actually slew himself for vexation that the Fourteenth
had won without his men.

E. 12.--Where the armies met is quite uncertain, though tradition
fixes on a not unlikely spot near London, whose name of "Battle
Bridge" has but lately been overlaid by the modern designation of
"King's Cross."[179] We only know that Suetonius drew up his line
across a glade in the forest, which thus protected his flanks, and
awaited the foe as they came pouring back from Verulam. In front of
the British line Boadicea, arrayed in the Icenian tartan, her plaid
fastened by a golden brooch, and a spear in her hand, was seen passing
along "loftily-charioted" from clan to clan, as she exhorted each
in turn to conquer or die. Suetonius is said to have given the like
exhortation to the Romans; but every man in their ranks must already
have been well aware that defeat would spell death for him. The one
chance was in steadiness and disciplined valour; and the legionaries
stood firm under a storm of missiles, withholding their own fire
till the foe came within close range. Then, and not till then, they
delivered a simultaneous discharge of their terrible _pila_[180] on
the British centre. The front gave with the volley, and the Romans, at
once wheeling into wedge-shape formation, charged sword in hand into
the gap, and cut the British line clean in two. Behind it was a laager
of wagons, containing their families and spoil, and there the Britons
made a last attempt to rally. But the furious Romans entered the
enclosure with them, and the fight became a simple massacre. No
fewer than eighty thousand fell, and the very horses and oxen were
slaughtered by the maddened soldiery to swell the heaps of slain.
Boadicea, broken-hearted, died by poison; and (being reinforced by
troops from Germany) Suetonius proceeded "to make a desert and call it

E. 13.--The punishment he dealt out to the revolted districts was
so remorseless that the new Procurator, Julius Classicianus, sent a
formal complaint to Rome on the suicidal impolicy of his superior's
measures. Nero, however, did not mend matters by sending (like
Claudius) a freed-man favourite as Royal Commissioner to supersede
Suetonius. Polycletus was received with derision both by Roman and
Briton, and Suetonius remained acting Governor till the wreck of some
warships afforded an excuse for a peremptory order to "hand over
the command" to Petronius Turpilianus. Fighting now ceased by mutual
consent; and this disgraceful slackness was called by the new Governor
"Peace with Honour" [_honestum pacis nomen segni otio imposuit_].


Civil war--Otho and Vitellius--Army of
Britain--Priscus--Agricola--Vespasian Emperor--Cerealis--Brigantes put
down--Frontinus--Silurians put down--Agricola Pro-praetor--Ordovices
put down--Pacification of South Britain--Roman civilization
introduced--Caledonian campaign--Galgacus--Agricola's
rampart--Domitian--Resignation and death of Agricola.

F. 1.--Disgraceful as the policy of Petronius seemed to Tacitus
(under the inspiration probably of his father-in-law Agricola), it did
actually secure for Britain several years of much-needed peace. Not
till the months of confusion which followed the death of Nero [June
10, A.D. 68] did any native rising take place, and then only in Wales
and the north. The Roman Army of Britain was thus free to take sides
in the contest for the throne between Otho and Vitellius, of which all
that could be predicted was that the victor would be the worse of the
two [_deteriorem fore quisquis vicisset_]. They were, however, so
much ahead of their date that, before accepting this alternative,
they actually thought of setting up an Emperor of their own, after the
fashion so freely followed in later centuries. Fortunately the popular
subaltern [[Greek: hupostratêgos]] on whom their choice fell, one
Priscus, had the sense to see that the time was not yet come for such
action, and sarcastically refused the crown. "I am no more fit," he
said, "to be an Emperor [[Greek: autokrator]]than you to be soldiers."
The army now proceeded to "sit on the fence"; some legions, notably
the famous Fourteenth, slightly inclined to Otho, others to Vitellius,
till their hesitation was ended by their own special hero, Vespasian,
fresh from his Judaean victories,[182] coming forward as Pretender.
Agricola, now in command of the Twentieth, at once declared for him,
and the other legions followed suit--the Fourteenth being gratified by
the title "_Victores Britannici_," officially conferred upon them by
the Emperor's new Pro-praetor, Petilius Cerealis.

F. 2.--We now enter upon the last stage of the fifty years' struggle
made by British patriots before they finally bowed to the Roman
yoke. The glory of ending the long conflict is due to Agricola,
whose praises are chronicled by his son-in-law Tacitus, and who does
actually seem to have been a very choice example of Roman virtue and
ability. The Army of Britain had been his training school in
military life, and successive commanders had recognized his merits by
promotion. Now his superiors gave him an almost independent command,
in which he showed himself as modest as he was able. Thanks to him,
Cerealis was able in A.D. 70 to end a Brigantian war (of which the
inevitable Cartismandua was the "_teterrima causa_" now no less than
twenty years earlier), and the next Pro-praetor, Frontinus, to put
down, in 75, the very last effort of the indomitable Silurians. Yet
another year, and he himself was made Military Governor of the island,
and set about the task of permanently consolidating it as a Roman
Province, with an insight all his own.

F. 3.--The only Britons yet in arms south of the Tyne were the
Ordovices of North Wales, who had lately cut to pieces a troop of
Roman cavalry. Agricola marched against them, and, by swimming
his horsemen across the Menai Straits, surprised their stronghold,
Anglesey, thus bringing about the same instant submission of the whole
clan which through the same tactics he had seen won, seventeen years
earlier, by Suetonius.

F. 4.--But Agricola was not, like Suetonius, a mere military
conqueror. He saw that Britons would never unfeignedly submit so
long as they were treated as slaves; and he set himself to remedy the
grievances under which the provincials so long had suffered. Military
licence, therefore, and civil corruption alike, he put down with
a resolute hand, never acting through intermediaries, but himself
investigating every complaint, rewarding merit, and punishing
offences. The vexatious monopolies which previous governors had
granted, he did away with; and, while he firmly dealt with every
symptom of disloyalty, his aim was "not penalty but penitence" [_nom
paena sed saepius paenitentia_]--penitence shown in a frank acceptance
of Roman civilization. Under his influence Roman temples, Roman
forums, Roman dwelling-houses, Roman baths and porticoes, rose all
over the land, and, above all, Roman schools, where the youth of the
upper classes learnt with pride to adopt the tongue[183] and dress of
their conquerors. It is appropriate that the only inscription
relating to him as yet found in Britain should be on two of the lead
water-pipes (discovered in 1899 and 1902) which supplied his new Roman
city (_Deva_) at Chester.[184]

F. 5.--This proved a far more effectual method of conquest than any
yet adopted, and Southern Britain became so quiet and contented that
Agricola could meditate an extension of the Roman sway over the wilder
regions to the north, and even over Ireland.[185] He did not, indeed,
actually accomplish either design, but he extended the Roman frontier
to the Forth, and carried the Roman arms beyond the Tay. The game,
however, proved not worth the candle. The regions penetrated were wild
and barren, the inhabitants ferocious savages, who defended themselves
with such fury that it was not worth while to subdue them.

F. 6.--The final battle [A.D. 84], somewhere near Inverness, is
described in minute and picturesque detail by Tacitus, who was
present. He shows us the slopes of the Grampians alive with the
Highland host, some on foot, some in chariots, armed with claymore,
dirk, and targe as in later ages. He puts into the mouth of the
leader, Galgacus, an eloquent summary of the motives which did really
actuate them, and he reports the exhortation to close the fifty years
of British warfare with a glorious victory which Agricola, no doubt,
actually addressed to his soldiers. He paints for us the wild charge
of the clans, the varying fortunes of the conflict (which at one point
was so doubtful that Agricola dismounted to fight on foot with his
men), and the final hopeless rout of the Caledonian army, with
the slaughter of ten thousand men; the Roman loss being under four
hundred--including one unlucky colonel [_praefectus cohortis_] whose
horse ran away with him into the enemy's ranks.

F. 7.--Agricola had now the prudence to draw his stakes while the game
was still in his favour. He sent his fleet north-about (thus, for the
first time, _proving_ Britain to be an island),[186] and marched his
army across to meet it on the Clyde, whence he had already drawn his
famous rampart to the Forth, henceforward to be the extreme limit of
Roman Britain.[187] His work was now done, and well done. He resigned
his Province, and returned to Rome, in time to avoid dismissal by
Domitian, to whom preeminent merit in any subject was matter for
jealous hatred,[188] and who now made Agricola report himself by
night, and received him without one word of commendation. Had his life
been prolonged he would undoubtedly have perished, like so many of the
best of the Roman aristocracy, by the despot's hands; but just before
the unrestrained outbreak of tyranny, he suddenly died--"_felix
opportunitate mortis_"--to be immortalized by the love and genius
of his daughter's husband. And he left Britain, as it had never been
before, truly within the comity of the Roman Empire.




Pacification of Britain--Roman roads--London their centre--Authority
for names--Watling Street--Ermine Street--Icknield Way.

A. 1.--The work of Agricola inaugurated in Britain that wonderful _Pax
Romana_ which is so unique a phenomenon in the history of the world.
That Peace was not indeed in our island so long continued or so
unbroken as in the Mediterranean lands, where, for centuries on end,
no weapon was used in anger. But even here swords were beaten into
ploughshares and spears into pruning-hooks to an extent never known
before or since in our annals. So profound was the quiet that for a
whole generation Britain vanishes from history altogether. All through
the Golden Age of Rome, the reigns of Nerva and Trajan, no writer
even names her; and not till A.D. 120 do we find so much as a passing
mention of our country. But we may be sure that under such rulers the
good work of Agricola was developing itself upon the lines he had laid
down, and that Roman civilization was getting an ever firmer hold. The
population was recovering from the frightful drain of the Conquest,
the waste cities were rebuilt, and new towns sprang up all over the
land, for the most part probably on old British sites, connected by
a network of roads, no longer the mere trackways of the Britons, but
"streets" elaborately constructed and metalled.

A. 2.--All are familiar with the Roman roads of Britain as they
figure on our maps. Like our present lines of railway, the main routes
radiate in all directions from London, and for a like reason; London
having been, in Roman days as now, the great commercial centre of the
country. The reason for this, that it was the lowest place where the
Thames could be bridged, we have already referred to.[189] We see the
_Watling Street_ roughly corresponding to the North-Western Railway on
one side of the metropolis, and to the South-Eastern on the other; the
_Ermine Street_ corresponding to the Great Northern Railway; while
the Great Western, the South-Western, the Great Eastern, and the
Portsmouth branch of the South Coast system are all represented in
like manner. We notice, perhaps, that, except the Watling Street and
the Ermine Street, all these routes are nameless; though we find four
minor roads with names crossing England from north-east to south-west,
and one from north-west to south-east. The former are the _Fosse
Way_ (from Grimsby on the Humber to Seaton on the Axe), the _Ryknield
Street_ (from Newcastle-on-Tyne to Caerleon-upon-Usk), the _Akeman
Street_ (from Wells on the Wash to Aust on the Severn), and the
_Icknield Way_ (from Norfolk to Dorset). The latter is the _Via
Devana_ (from Chester to Colchester).

A. 3.--It comes as a surprise to most when we learn that all these
names (except the Watling Street, the Fosse, and the Icknield Way
only) are merely affixed to their respective roads by the conjectures
of 17th-century antiquarianism, Gale being their special identifier.
The names themselves (except in the case of the Via Devana) are old,
and three of them, the Ermine Street, the Icknield Street, and the
Fosse Way, figure in the inquisition of 1070 as being, together with
the Watling Street, those of the Four Royal Roads (_quatuor chimini_)
of England, the King's Highways, exempt from local jurisdiction and
under the special guard of the King's Peace. Two are said to cross the
length of the land, two its breadth. But their identification (except
in the case of the main course of Watling Street) has been matter of
antiquarian dispute from the 12th century downwards.[190] The very
first chronicler who mentions them, Geoffrey of Monmouth, makes Ermine
Street run from St. David's to Southampton, Icknield Street from St.
David's to Newcastle, and the Fosse Way from Totnes in Devon to far
Caithness; and his error has misled many succeeding authorities. That
it _is_ an error, at least with regard to the Icknield Way and the
Fosse Way, is sufficiently proved by the various mediaeval charters
which mention these roads in connection with localities along their
course as assigned by our received geography.

As to the main Watling Street there is no dispute. Running right
across the island from the Irish Sea[191] to the Straits of Dover, it
suggested to the minds of our English ancestors the shining track of
the Milky Way from end to end of the heavens. Even so Chaucer, in his
'House of Fame,' sings:

  "Lo there!" quod he, "cast up your eye,
  Se yonder, lo! the Galaxie,
  The whiche men clepe the Milky Way,
  For it is white, and some, parfay,
  Y-callen han it Watlinge-strete."

At Dover it still retains its name, and so it does in one part of its
course through London (which it enters as the Edgware Road, and leaves
as the Old Kent Road).[192]

A. 4.--This name, like that of the Ermine Street, is most probably
derived from Teutonic mythology; the "Watlings" being the patrons of
handicraft in the Anglo-Saxon Pantheon, and "Irmin" the War-god from
whom "Germany" is called.[193] There is no reason to suppose that
the roads of Britain had any Roman name, like those of Italy. The
designations given them by our English forefathers show how deeply
these mighty works impressed their imagination. The term "street"
which they adopted for them shows, as Professor Freeman has pointed
out, that such engineering ability was something quite new to their
experience.[194] It is the Latin "Via _strata_" Anglicized, and
describes no mere track, but the elaborately constructed Roman
causeway, along which the soft alluvium was first dug away, and
its place taken by layers of graduated road metal, with the surface
frequently an actual pavement.[195]

A. 5.--For the assignment of the name Ermine Street to the Great North
Road there is no ancient authority.[196] All we can say is that this
theory is more probable than that set forth by Geoffrey of Monmouth.
That the road existed in Roman times is certain, as London and York
were the two chief towns in the island; and direct communication
between them must have been of the first importance, both for military
and economical reasons. Indeed it is probably older yet. (See p. 117.)
But, with the exceptions already pointed out, the nomenclature of the
Romano-British roads is almost wholly guess-work. Some archaeological
maps show additional Watling Streets and Ermine Streets branching
in all directions over the land,[197] presumably on the authority of
local tradition. And these traditions may be not wholly unfounded;
for the same motives which made the English immigrants of one district
ascribe the handiwork of by-gone days to mythological powers might
operate to the like end in another.

A. 6.--The origin of the names Ryknield Street and Akeman Street
is beyond discovery;[198] but that of the Icknield Street is almost
undoubtedly due to its connection with the great Icenian tribe, to
whose territory it formed the only outlet.[199] By them, in the days
of their greatness, it was probably driven to the Thames, the more
southerly extension being perhaps later. It was never, as its present
condition abundantly testifies, made into a regular Roman "Street."
The final syllable may possibly, as Guest suggests, be the A.S. _hild_
= war.

A. 7.--Besides these main routes, a whole network of minor roads must
have connected the multitudinous villages and towns of Roman Britain,
a fact which is borne witness to by the very roundabout route often
given in the 'Itinerary' of Antoninus between places which we know
were directly connected.[200] Moreover this network must have been
at least as close as that of our present railways, and probably
approximated to that of our present roads.


Romano-British towns--Ancient lists--Methods of identification--Dense
rural population--Remains in Cam valley--Coins--Thimbles--Horseshoes.

B. 1.--Of these many Romano-British towns we have five contemporary
lists; those of Ptolemy in the 2nd century, of the Antonine
'Itinerary' in the 3rd, of the 'Notitia'[201] in the 5th, and those
of Nennius and of the Ravenna Geographer, composed while the memory of
the Roman occupation was still fresh. Ptolemy and Nennius profess to
give complete catalogues; the 'Itinerary' and 'Notitia' contain only
incidental references; while the Ravenna list, though far the most
copious, is expressly stated to be composed only of selected names. Of
these it has no fewer than 236, while the 'Notitia' gives 118, Ptolemy
60, and Nennius 28 (to which Marcus Anchoreta adds 5 more).

B. 2.--With this mass of material[202] it might seem to be an easy
task to locate every Roman site in Britain; especially as Ptolemy
gives the latitude (and sometimes the longitude[203] also) of every
place he mentions, and the 'Itinerary' the distances between its
stations. Unfortunately it is quite otherwise; and of the whole number
barely fifty can be at all certainly identified, while more than half
cannot even be guessed at with anything like reasonable probability.
To begin with, the text of every one of these authorities is corrupt
to a degree incredible; in Ptolemy we find _Nalkua_, for example,
where the 'Itinerary' and Ravenna lists give _Calleva_; _Simeni_
figures for _Iceni_, _Imensa_ for _Tamesis_. The 'Itinerary' itself
reads indiscriminately _Segeloco_ and _Ageloco_, _Lagecio_ and
_Legeolio_; and examples might be multiplied indefinitely. In Nennius,
particularly, the names are so disguised that, with two or three
exceptions, their identification is the merest guess-work; _Lunden_ is
unmistakable, and _Ebroauc_ is obviously York; but who shall say what
places lie hid under _Meguaid_, _Urnath_, _Guasmoric_, and _Celemon_?
And if this corruption is bad amongst the names, it absolutely runs
riot amongst the numbers, both in Ptolemy and the 'Itinerary,' so that
the degrees of the former and the distances of the latter are alike
grievously untrustworthy guides. Ptolemy, for example, says that the
longest day in London is 18 hours, an obvious mistake for 17, as the
context clearly shows. There is further the actual equation of error
in each authority: Ptolemy, for all his care, has confused
Exeter (_Isca Damnoniorum_) with the more famous _Isca Silurum_
(Caerleon-on-Usk); and there are blunders in his latitude and
longitude which cannot wholly be ascribed to textual corruption. Still
another difficulty is that then, as now, towns quite remote from each
other bore the same name, or names very similar. Not only were two
called _Isca_, but three were _Venta_, two _Calleva_, two _Segontium_,
and no fewer than seven _Magna_; while _Durobrivae_ is only too like
to _Durocobrivae_, _Margiodunum_ to _Moridunum_, _Durnovaria_ to
_Durovernum_, etc. The last name even gets confounded with _Dubris_ by

B. 3.--In all the lists we are struck by the extraordinary
preponderance of northern names. Half the sites given by Ptolemy lie
north of the Humber, and this is also the case with the Ravenna list,
while in the 'Notitia' the proportion is far greater. In the last case
this is due to the fact that the military garrisons, with which the
catalogue is concerned, were mainly quartered in the north, and a like
explanation probably holds good for the earlier and later lists
also. Nennius, as is to be expected, draws most of his names from the
districts which the Saxons had not yet reached; all being given with
the Celtic prefix _Caer_ (=city).

B. 4.--Amid all these snares the most certain identification of a
Roman site is furnished by the discovery of inscriptions relating to
the special troops with which the name is associated in historical
documents. When, for example, we find in the Roman station at
Birdoswald, on the Wall of Hadrian, an inscription recording the
occupation of the spot by a Dacian cohort, and read in the 'Notitia'
that such a cohort was posted at _Amboglanna per lineam Valli_, we
are sure that Amboglanna and Birdoswald are identical. This method,
unfortunately, helps us very little except on the Wall, for the
legionary inscriptions elsewhere are found in many places with which
history does not particularly associate the individual legions thus
commemorated.[204] However, the special number of such traces of the
Second Legion at Caerleon, the Twentieth at Chester, and the Sixth at
York, would alone justify us in certainly determining those places
to be the Isca, Deva, and Eboracum given as their respective
head-quarters in our documentary and historical evidence.

B. 5.--In the case of York another proof is available; for the name,
different as it sounds, can be traced, by a continuous stream of
linguistic development, through the Old English Eorfowic to the Roman
_Eboracum_. In the same way the name of _Dubris_ has unmistakably
survived in Dover, _Lemannae_ in Lympne, _Regulbium_ in Reculver.
_Colonia, Glevum_, _Venta, Corinium, Danum_, and _Mancunium_, with the
suffix "chester,"[205] have become Colchester, Gloucester, Winchester,
Cirencester, Doncaster, and Manchester. Lincoln is _Lindum Colonia_,
Richborough, _Ritupis_; while the phonetic value of the word London
has remained absolutely unaltered from the very first, and varies but
slightly even in its historical orthography.

B. 6.--With names of this class, of which there are about thirty,
for a starting-point, we can next, by the aid of our various lists
(especially Ptolemy's, which gives the tribe in which each town lies,
and the 'Itinerary'), assign, with a very high degree of probability,
some thirty more--similarity of name being still more or less of
a guide. For example, when midway between _Venta_ (Winchester) and
_Sorbiodunum_ (Sarum) the 'Itinerary' places _Brige_, and the name
_Broughton_ now occupies this midway spot, _Brige_ and _Broughton_ may
be safely assumed to be the same. This method shows Leicester to
be the Roman _Ratae_, Carlisle to be _Luguvallum_, Newcastle
_Pons Aelii_, etc., with so much probability that none of these
identifications have been seriously disputed amongst antiquaries;
while few are found to deny that Cambridge represents
_Camboricum_,[206] Huntingdon (or Godmanchester) _Durolipons_,
Silchester _Calleva_, etc. A list of all the sites which may be said
to be fairly certified will be found at the end of this chapter.

B. 7.--Beyond them we come to about as many more names in our ancient
catalogues of which all we can say is that we know the district to
which they belong, and may safely apply them to one or other of the
existing Roman sites in that district; the particular application
being disputed with all the heat of the _odium archaeologicum_. Thus
_Bremetonacum_ was certainly in Lancashire; but whether it is
now Lancaster, or Overborough, or Ribchester, we will not say;
_Caesaromagum_ was certainly in Essex; but was it Burghstead, Widford,
or Chelmsford? And was the original _Camalodunum_ at Colchester,
Lexden, or Maldon?

B. 8.--And, yet further, we find, especially in the Ravenna list,
multitudes of names with nothing whatever to tell us of their
whereabouts; though nearly all have been seized upon by rival
antiquaries, and ascribed to this, that, and the other of the endless
Roman sites which meet us all over the country.[207]

B. 9.--For it must be remembered that there are very few old towns in
England where Roman remains have not been found, often in profusion;
and even amongst the villages such finds are exceedingly common
wherever excavations on any large scale have been undertaken. Thus
in the Cam valley, where the "coprolite" digging[208] resulted in
the systematic turning over of a considerable area, their number
is astounding, proving the existence of a teeming population. Many
thousands of coins were turned up, scarcely ever in hordes, but
scattered singly all over the land, testifying to the amount of petty
traffic which must have gone on generation after generation. For these
coins are very rarely of gold or silver, and amongst them are found
the issues of every Roman Emperor from Augustus to Valentinian III.
And, besides the coins, the soil was found to teem with fragments of
Roman pottery; while the many "ashpits" discovered--as many as thirty
in a single not very large field--have furnished other articles of
domestic use, such as thimbles.[209] Even horseshoes have been found,
though their use only came in with the 5th century of our era.[210]

B. 10.--Now there is no reason for supposing that the Cam valley was
in any way an exceptionally prosperous or populous district in the
Roman period. It contained but one Roman town of even third-class
importance, Cambridge, and very few of the "villas" in which the
great landed proprietors resided. The wealth of remains which it has
furnished is merely a by-product of the "coprolite" digging, and it
is probable that equally systematic digging would have like results in
almost any alluvial district in the island. We may therefore regard
it as fairly established that these districts were as thickly peopled
under the Romans as at any other period of history, and that the
agricultural population of our island has never been larger than in
the 3rd and 4th centuries, till its great development in the 19th.


Fortification of towns late--Chief Roman
centres--London--York--Chester--Bath--Silchester--Remains there
found--Romano-British handicrafts--Pottery--Basket work--Mining--Rural
life--Villas--Forests--Hunting dogs--Husbandry--Britain under the _Pax

C. 1.--The profound peace which reigned in these rural districts is
shown by the fact that Roman weapons are the rarest of all finds, far
less common than the earlier British or the ensuing Saxon.[211] At the
same time it is worthy of note that every Roman town which has been
excavated has been found to be fortified, often on a most formidable
scale. Thus at London there still remains visible a sufficiently large
fragment of the wall to show that it must have been at least thirty
feet high, while that of Silchester was nine feet thick, with a fosse
of no less than thirty yards in width. And at Cirencester the river
Churn or Corin (from which the town took its name _Corinium_) was made
to flow round the ramparts, which consisted first of an outer
facing of stone, then of a core of concrete, and finally an earthen
embankment within, the whole reaching a width of at least four yards.
It is probable, however, that these defences, like those of so many of
the Gallic cities, and like the Aurelian walls of Rome itself; belong
to the decadent period of Roman power, and did not exist (except
in the northern garrisons and the great legionary stations, York,
Chester, and Caerleon) during the golden age of Roman Britain.[212]

C. 2.--Their circuit, where it has been traced, furnishes a rough
gauge of the comparative importance of the Roman towns of Britain.
Far at the head stands London, where the names of Ludgate, Newgate,
Aldersgate, Moorgate, Bishopsgate, and Aldgate still mark the ancient
boundary line, five miles in extent (including the river-front),
nearly twice that of any other town.[213] And abundant traces of the
existence of a flourishing suburb have been discovered on the southern
bank of the river. To London ran nearly all the chief Roman roads, and
the shapeless block now called London Stone was once the _Milliarium_
from which the distances were reckoned along their course throughout
the land.[214]

C. 3.--The many relics of the Roman occupation to be seen in the
Museum at the Guildhall bear further testimony to the commercial
importance of the City in those early days, an importance primarily
due, as we have already seen, to the natural facilities for crossing
the Thames at London Bridge.[215] The greatness of Roman London seems,
however, to have been purely commercial. We do not even know that it
was the seat of government for its own division of Britain. It was
not a Colony, nor (in spite of the exceptional strength of the site,
surrounded, as it was, by natural moats)[216] does it ever appear as
of military importance till the campaign of Theodosius at the very end
of the chapter.[217] In the 'Notitia' it figures as the head-quarters
of the Imperial Treasury, and about the same date we learn that the
name Augusta had been bestowed upon the town, as on Caerleon and on
so many others throughout the Empire, though the older "London" still
remained unforgotten.[218]

C. 4.--But, so far as Britain had a recognized capital at all,
York and not London best deserved that name. For here was the chief
military nerve-centre of the land, the head-quarters of the Army,
where the Commander-in-Chief found himself in ready touch with the
thick array of garrisons holding every strategic point along the
various routes by which any invader who succeeded in forcing the Wall
would penetrate into the land. At York, accordingly, the Emperors who
visited Britain mostly held their court; beginning with Hadrian, who
here established the Sixth Legion which he had brought over with him,
possibly incorporating with it the remains of the Ninth, traces of
which are here found. And here it remained permanently quartered to
the very end of the Roman occupation, as abundant inscriptions,
etc. testify. One of these, found in the excavations for the railway
station, is a brass tablet with a dedication (in Greek) to _The
Gods of the Head Praetorium_ [[Greek: theois tois tou haegemonikou
praitoriou]], bearing witness to the essential militarism of the city.

C. 5.--A Praetorium, moreover, was not merely a military centre. It
was also, as at Jerusalem, a Judgment Hall; and here, probably, the
_Juridicus Britanniae_[219] exercised his functions, which would
seem to have been something resembling those of a Lord Chief Justice.
Precedents laid down by his Court are quoted as still in force even by
the Codex of Justinian (555). One of these incidentally lets us know
that the Romans kept up not only a British Army, but a British Fleet
in being.[220] The latter, probably, as well as the former, had its
head-quarters at York, where the Ouse of old furnished a far more
available waterway than now. Even so late as 1066 the great fleet of
Harold Hardrada could anchor only a few miles off, at Riccall: and
there is good evidence that in the Roman day the river formed an
extensive "broad" under the walls of York itself. As at Portsmouth and
Plymouth to-day, the presence of officers and seamen of the Imperial
Navy must have added to the military bustle in the streets of
Eboracum; while tesselated pavements, unknown in the ruder fortresses
of the Wall, testify to the softer side of social life in a garrison

C. 6.--Chester [Deva] was also a garrison town, the head-quarters
of the Twentieth Legion; so was Caerleon-upon-Usk [Isca], with the
Second. A detachment was almost certainly detailed from one or other
of these to hold Wroxeter [Uriconium], midway between them;[221] thus
securing the line of the Marches between the wild districts of Wales
and the more fertile and settled regions eastward. And the name of
Leicester records the fact (not otherwise known to us) that here too
was a military centre; probably sufficient to police the rest of the

C. 7.--Gloucester, Colchester, and Lincoln, as being Colonies, may
have been also, perhaps, always fortified, and possibly garrisoned.
But in the ordinary Romano-British town, such as London,
Silchester, or Bath,[223] the life was probably wholly civilian.
The fortifications, if the place ever had any, were left to decay
or removed, the soldiery were withdrawn or converted into a mere
_gendarmerie_, and under the shield of the _Pax Romana_, the towns
were as open as now. And as little as now did they look forward to
a time when each would have to become a strongly-held place of arms
girded in by massive ramparts, yet destined to prove all too weak
against the sweep of barbarian invasion.

C. 8.--On most of these sites continuous occupation for many
subsequent ages has blotted out the vestiges of their Roman day. Every
town has a tendency literally to bury its past; and the larger the
town the deeper the burial. Thus at London the Roman pavements, etc.
found are some twenty feet below the present surface, at Lincoln some
six or seven, and so forth. To learn how a Roman town was actually
laid out we must have recourse to those places which for some reason
have not been resettled since their destruction at the Anglo-Saxon
conquest, such as Wroxeter and Silchester, where the remains
accordingly lie only a foot or two below the ground. The former has
been little explored, but the latter has for the last ten years
been systematically excavated under the auspices of the Society of
Antiquaries, the portions unearthed being reburied year by year, after
careful examination and record.[224]

C. 9.--The greater part of the site has thus been already (1903) dealt
with; proving the town to have been laid out on a regular plan, with
straight streets dividing it, like an American city, into rectangular
blocks. Twenty-eight of these have, so far, been excavated. They are
from 100 to 150 yards in length and breadth, arranged, like the blocks
in a modern town, with houses all round, and a central space for
gardens, back-yards, etc. The remains found (including coins from
Caligula to Arcadius) prove that the site was occupied during the
whole of the Roman period. Originally it was, in all probability, one
of the towns built for the Britons by Agricola[225] on the distinctive
Roman pattern, with a central forum, town hall, baths, temples, and an
amphitheatre outside the city limits.

C. 10.--The forum was flanked by a vast basilica, no less than 325
feet in length by 125 in breadth, with apses of 39 feet radius.[226] A
smaller edifice of basilican type is generally supposed to have been
a Christian church. It stands east and west, and consists of a nave 30
feet long by 10 broad, flanked by 5-feet aisles, with a narthex of 7
feet (extending right across the building) at the east end, and at
the west an apse of 10 feet radius, having in the centre a tesselated
pavement 6 feet square, presumably for the Altar.[227]

C. 11.--The main street of Silchester ran east and west, and _may_
have been the main road from London to Bath; while that which crosses
it at the forum was perhaps an extension of the Icknield Way
from Wallingford to Winchester. A third road led straight to Old
Sarum,[228] and there may have been others. Silchester lies about
half-way between Reading and Basingstoke.

C. 12.--The relics of domestic life found indicate a high order of
peaceful civilization. Abundance of domestic pottery (some of it
the glazed ware manufactured at Caistor on the Nen), many bones
of domestic animals (amongst them the cat),[229] finger-rings
with engraved gems, and the like, have been discovered in the old
wells[230] and ashpits. More remarkable was the unearthing (in 1899)
of the plant of a silver refinery,[231] showing that the method
employed was analogous to that in vogue amongst the Japanese to-day,
and that bone-ash was used in the construction of the hearths.[232]
The houses were mainly built of red clay (on a foundation wall of
flint and mortar) filled into a timber frame-work and supported by
lath or wattle. The exterior was stamped with ornamental patterns,
as in modern "parjetting" (which may thus very possibly be an actual
survival from Roman days). This clay has in most cases soaked away
into a mere layer of red mud overlying the pavements; but in 1901
there was unearthed a house in which a fortunate fire had calcined it
into permanent brick, still retaining the parjetting and the impress
of wattle and timber. But the whole site has not provided a single
weapon of any sort or kind, and the construction of the defences
clearly shows that they formed no part of the original plan on which
the place was laid out.[233] They were probably, as we have said,
added at the break up of the Pax Romana.

C. 13.--With the exception of the silver refinery above mentioned,
nothing has appeared to tell us what handicrafts were practised
at Silchester; but such industries formed a noteworthy feature of
Romano-British life. Naturally the largest traces have been left in
connection with that most imperishable of all commodities, pottery.
The kilns where it was made are frequently met with in excavations;
and individual vases, jugs,[234] cups, and amphorae (often of very
large dimensions) constantly appear. Many of these are beautifully
modelled and finished, and not unseldom glazed in various ways. But
there is no evidence that the delicate "Samian" ware[235] was ever
manufactured in Britain, though every house of any pretensions
possessed a certain store of it. The indigenous art of
basket-making[236] also continued as a speciality of Britain under the
Romans, and the indigenous mining for tin, lead, iron, and copper was
developed by them on the largest scale. In every district where these
metals are found, in Cornwall, in Somerset, in Wales, in Derbyshire,
and in Sussex, traces of Roman work are apparent, dating from the very
beginning of the occupation to the very end. The earliest known
Roman inscription found in Britain is one of A.D. 49 (the year before
Ostorius subdued the Iceni) on a pig of lead from the Mendips,[237]
and similar pigs bearing the Labarum, _i.e._ not earlier than
Constantine presumably, have been dredged up in the Thames below
London.[238] Inscriptions also survive to tell us of a few amongst
the many other trades which must have figured in Romano-British
life,--goldsmiths, silversmiths, iron-workers, stone-cutters,
sculptors, architects, eye-doctors, are all thus commemorated.[239]

C. 14.--But then, as always, the life of Britain was mainly rural. The
evidence for this unearthed in the Cam valley has already been spoken
of, and in every part of England the "villas" of the great Roman
landowners are constantly found. Hundreds have already been
discovered, and year by year the list is added to. One of the most
recent of the finds is that at Greenwich in 1901, and the best known,
perhaps, that at Brading in the Isle of Wight. Here, as elsewhere,
the tesselated pavements, the elaborate arrangements for warming (by
hypocausts conveying hot air to every room), the careful laying out of
the apartments, all testify to the luxury in which these old landlords
lived. For the "villa" was the Squire's Hall of the period, and was
provided, like the great country houses of to-day, with all the best
that contemporary life could give.[240] And, like these also, it was
the centre of a large circle of humbler dependencies wherein resided
the peasantry of the estate and the domestics of the mansion.[241] The
existence amongst these of huntsmen (as inscriptions tell) reminds
us that not only was the chase, then as now, popular amongst the
squirearchy, but that there was a far larger scope for its exercise.
Great forests still covered a notable proportion of the soil (the
largest being that which spread over the whole Weald of Sussex)[242],
and were tenanted by numberless deer and wild swine, along with the
wolves, and, perhaps, bears,[243] that fed upon them.

C. 15.--Hence it came about that during the Roman occupation the
British products we find most spoken of by classical authors are the
famous breeds of hunting-dogs produced by our island. Oppian[244]
[A.D. 140] gives a long description of one sort, which he describes
as small [Greek: _baion_], awkward [Greek: _guron_], long-bodied,
rough-haired, not much to look at, but excellent at scenting out their
game and tackling it when found--like our present otter-hounds. The
native name for this strain was Agasseus. Nemesianus[245] [A.D. 280]
sings the swiftness of British hounds; and Claudian[246] refers to a
more, formidable kind, used for larger game, equal indeed to pulling
down a bull. He is commonly supposed to mean some species of mastiff;
but, according to Mr. Elton[247] mastiffs are a comparatively recent
importation from Central Asia, so that a boarhound of some sort is
more probably intended, such as may be seen depicted (along with its
smaller companion) on the fine tesselated pavement preserved in the
Corinium Museum at Cirencester.[248] Whatever the creature was, it is
probably the same as the Scotch "fighting dog," which figures in the
4th century polemics as a huge massive brute of savage temper[249]
and evil odour,[250] to which accordingly controversialists rejoice
in likening their ecclesiastical opponents.[251] Jerome incidentally
tells us that "Alpine" dogs were of this Scotch breed, which thus may
possibly be the original strain now developed into the St. Bernard.

C. 16.--But the existence of such tracts of forest, even when very
extensive, is quite compatible (as the present state of France shows
us) with a highly developed civilization, and a population thick upon
the ground. And that a very large area of our soil came to be under
the plough at least before the Roman occupation ended is proved by the
fact that eight hundred wheat-ships were dispatched from this island
by Julian the Apostate for the support of his garrisons in Gaul. The
terms in which this transaction is recorded suggest that wheat was
habitually exported (on a smaller scale, doubtless) from Britain to
the Continent. At all events enough was produced for home consumption,
and under the shadow of the Pax Romana the wild and warlike
Briton became a quiet cultivator of the ground, a peaceful and not
discontented dependent of the all-conquering Power which ruled the
whole civilized world.

C. 17.--In the country the husbandman ploughed and sowed and reaped
and garnered,[252] sometimes as a freeholder, oftener as a tenant;
the miller was found upon every stream; the fisher baited his hook and
cast his net in fen and mere; the Squire hunted and feasted amid his
retainers (who were usually slaves); his wife and daughters occupied
themselves in the management of the house. The language of Rome
was everywhere spoken, the literature of Rome was read amongst the
educated classes; while amongst the peasantry the old Celtic tongue,
and with it, we may be sure, the old Celtic legends and songs, held
its own. Intercourse was easy between the various districts; for along
every great road a series of posting-stations, each with its stud of
relays, was available for the service of travellers. In the towns were
to be found schools, theatres, and courts of justice, with shops of
every sort and kind, while travelling pedlars supplied the needs of
the rural districts. No one, except actual soldiers, dreamt of bearing
arms, or indeed was allowed to do so,[253] and the general aspect of
the land was as wholly peaceful as now. But every one had to pay a
substantial proportion of his income in taxes, in the collection of
which there was not seldom a notable amount of corruption, as amongst
the publicans of Judaea. In the bad days of the decadence this became
almost intolerable;[254] but so long as the central administration
retained its integrity the amount exacted was no more than left to
every class a fair margin for the needs, and even the enjoyments, of


The unconquered North--Hadrian's Wall--Upper and Lower
Britain--Romano-British coinage--Wall of Antoninus--Britain

D. 1.--The weak point of all this peaceful development was that the
northern regions of the island remained unsubdued. It was all very
well for the Roman Treasury, with true departmental shortsightedness,
to declare (as Appian[255] reports) that North Britain was a worthless
district, which could never be profitable [Greek: [_euphoron_]] to
hold. The cost would have been cheap in the end. All through the Roman
occupation it was from the north that trouble was liable to arise,
and ultimately it was the ferocious independence of the Highland clans
that brought Roman Britain to its doom. The Saxons, as tradition tells
us, would never have been invited into the land but for the ravages
of these Picts; and, in sober history, it may well be doubted whether
they could ever have effected a permanent settlement here had not the
Britons, in defending our shores, been constantly exposed to Pictish
attacks from the rear.

D. 2.--Thus our earliest notice of Britain in this period tells us
that Hadrian (A.D. 120), our first Imperial visitor since Claudius
(A.D. 44), found it needful (after a revolt which cost many lives,
and involved, as it seems, the final destruction of the unlucky Ninth
Legion, which had already fared so badly in Boadicea's rebellion[256])
to supplement Agricola's rampart, between Forth and Clyde, with
another from sea to sea, between Tynemouth and Solway, "dividing the
Romans from the barbarians."[257] This does not mean that the district
thus isolated was definitely abandoned,[258] but that its inhabitants
were so imperfectly Romanized that the temptation to raid the more
civilized lands to the south had better be obviated. The Wall of
Hadrian marked the real limit of Roman Britain: beyond it was a
"march," sometimes strongly, more often feebly, garrisoned, but never
effectually occupied, much less civilized. The inhabitants, indeed,
seem to have rapidly lost what civilization they had. Dion Cassius
describes them, in the next generation, as far below the Caledonians
who opposed Agricola, a mere horde of squalid and ferocious
cannibals,[259] going into battle stark-naked (like their descendants
the Galwegians a thousand years later),[260] having neither chief nor
law, fields nor houses. The name Attacotti, by which they came finally
to be known, probably means _Tributary_, and describes their nominal
status towards Rome.

D. 3.--How hopeless the task of effectually incorporating these
barbarians within the Empire appeared to Hadrian is shown by the
extraordinary massiveness of the Wall which he built[261] to keep them
out from the civilized Provinces[262] to the southwards. "Uniting the
estuaries of Tyne and Solway it chose the strongest line of defence
available. Availing itself of a series of bold heights, which slope
steadily to the south, but are craggy precipices to the north, as if
designed by Nature for this very purpose, it pursued its mighty course
across the isthmus with a pertinacious, undeviating determination
which makes its remains unique in Europe, and one of the most
inspiriting scenes in Britain."[263] Its outer fosse (where the nature
of the ground permits) is from 30 to 40 feet wide and some 20 deep, so
sloped that the whole was exposed to direct fire from the Wall,
from which it is separated by a small glacis [_linea_] 10 or 12 feet
across. Beyond it the upcast earth is so disposed as to form the
glacis proper, for about 50 feet before dipping to the general ground
level. The Wall itself is usually 8 feet thick, the outer and inner
faces formed of large blocks of freestone, with an interior core of
carefully-filled-in rubble. The whole thus formed a defence of the
most formidable character, testifying strongly to the respect in which
the valour of the Borderers against whom it was constructed was held
by Hadrian and his soldiers.[264]

D. 4.--This expedition of Hadrian is cited by his biographer, Aelius
Spartianus, as the most noteworthy example of that invincible activity
which led him to take personal cognizance of every region in his
Empire: "_Ante omnes enitebatur ne quid otiosum vel emeret aliquando
vel pasceret."_ His contempt for slothful self-indulgence finds vent
in his reply to the doggerel verses of Florus, who had written:

  _Ego nolo Caesar esse,       ["To be Caesar I'd not care,
  Ambulare per Britannos,          Through the Britons far to fare,
  Scythicas pati pruinas_.      Scythian frost and cold to bear."]

Hadrian made answer:

  _Ego nolo Florus esse,       ["To be Florus I'd not care,
  Ambulare per tabernas,           Through the tavern-bars to fare,
  Cimices pati rotundas_.       Noxious insect-bites to bear."]

To us its special interest (besides the Wall) is found in the bronze
coins commemorating the occasion, the first struck with special
reference to Britain since those of Claudius. These are of various
types, but all of the year 120 (the third Consulate of Hadrian); and
the reverse mostly represents the figure so familiar on our present
bronze coinage, Britannia, spear in hand, on her island rock, with her
shield beside her.[265] This type was constantly repeated with slight
variations in the coinage of the next hundred years; and thus, when,
after an interval of twelve centuries, the British mint began once
more, in the reign of Charles the Second, to issue copper, this device
was again adopted, and still abides with us. The very large number of
types (approaching a hundred) of the Romano-British coinage, from this
reign to that of Caracalla, shows that Hadrian inaugurated the system
of minting coins not only with reference to Britain, but for special
local use. They were doubtless struck within the island; but we can
only conjecture where the earliest mints were situated.

D. 5.--Twenty years after Hadrian's visit we again find (A.D.
139) some little trouble in the north, owing to a feud between the
Brigantes and Genuini, a clan of whom nothing is known but the name.
The former seem to have been the aggressors, and were punished by the
confiscation of a section of their territory by Lollius Urbicus,
the Legate of Antoninus Pius; who further "shut off the excluded
barbarians by a turf wall" (_muro cespitio submotis[266] barbaris
ducto_). The context connects this operation with the Brigantian
troubles; but it is certain that Lollius repaired and strengthened
Agricola's rampart between Forth and Clyde. His name is found in
inscriptions along that line,[267] and that of Antoninus is frequent.
This work consisted of a _vallum_ some 40 miles in length, from
Carriden to Dumbarton, with fortified posts at frequent intervals.
It is locally known as "Graham's Dyke," and, since 1890, has been
systematically explored by the Glasgow Archaeological Society. It is
in the strictest sense "a turf wall"--no mere grass-grown earthwork,
but regularly built of squared sods in place of stones (sometimes on
a stone base). Roman engineers looked upon such a rampart as being the
hardest of all to construct.


Commodus Britannicus--Ulpius Marcellus--Murder of Perennis--Era of
military turbulence--Pertinax--Albinus--British Army defeated at
Lyons--Severus--Caledonian war--Severus overruns Highlands.

E. 1.--It may very probably be owing to the energy of Lollius that
Britain, "Upper" and "Lower" together as it seems, as inscriptions
tell us, was about this date ranked amongst the Senatorial Provinces
of the Empire, the Pro-consul being C. Valerius Pansa. That it should
have been made a Pro-consulate shows (as is pointed out on p. 142)
that they were now considered amongst the more peaceful governorships.
In fact, though some slight disturbances threatened at the death of
Antoninus (A.D. 161), the country remained quiet till Commodus came to
the throne (A.D. 180). Then, however, we hear of a serious inroad of
the northern barbarians, who burst over the Roman Wall and were not
repulsed without a hard campaign. The Roman commander was Ulpius
Marcellus, a harsh but devoted officer, who fared like a common
soldier, and insisted on the strictest vigilance, being himself "the
most sleepless of generals."[268] The British Army, accordingly, swore
by him, and were minded to proclaim him Emperor,[2] a matter which
all but cost him his life at the hands of Commodus; who, however,
contented himself with assuming, like Claudius, the title of
Britannicus, in virtue of this success.[2] The further precaution was
taken of cashiering not only Ulpius but all the superior officers
of this dangerous army; men of lower rank and less influence being
substituted. The soldiers, however, defeated the design by breaking
out into open mutiny, and tearing to pieces the "enemy of the Army,"
Perennis, Praefect of the Praetorian Guards, who had been sent from
Rome (A.D. 185) to carry out the reform.[269]

E. 2.--This episode shows us how great a solidarity the Army of
Britain had by this time developed. It was always the policy of
Imperial Rome to recruit the forces stationed throughout the Provinces
not from the natives around them, but from those of distant regions.
Inscriptions tell that the British Legions were chiefly composed of
Spaniards, Aquitanians, Gauls, Frisians, Dalmatians, and Dacians;
while from the 'Notitia' we know that, in the 5th century, such
distant countries as Mauretania, Libya, and even Assyria,[270]
furnished contingents. Britons, in turn, served in Gaul, Spain,
Illyria, Egypt, and Armenia, as well as in Rome itself.

E. 3.--The outburst which led to the slaughter of Perennis was but the
dawn of a long era of military turbulence in Britain. First came the
suppression of the revolt A.D. 187 by the new Legate,[271] Pertinax,
who, at the peril of his life, refused the purple offered him by the
mutineers,[272] and drafted fifteen hundred of the ringleaders into
the Italian service of Commodus;[273] then Commodus died (A.D. 192),
and Pertinax became one of the various pretenders to the Imperial
throne; then followed his murder by Julianus, while Albinus succeeded
to his pretensions as well as to his British government; then that of
Julianus by Severus; then the desperate struggle between Albinus and
Severus for the Empire; the crushing defeat (A.D. 197) of the British
Army at Lyons, the death of Albinus,[274] and the final recognition of
Severus[275] as the acknowledged ruler of the whole Roman world.

E. 4.--Of all the Roman Emperors Severus is the most closely connected
with Britain. The long-continued political and military confusion
amongst the conquerors had naturally excited the independent tribes
of the north. In A.D. 201 the Caledonians beyond Agricola's rampart
threatened it so seriously that Vinius Lupus, the Praetor, was fain
to buy off their attack; and, a few years later, they actually joined
hands with the nominally subject Meatae within the Pale, who thereupon
broke out into open rebellion, and, along with them, poured down upon
the civilized districts to the south. So extreme was the danger that
the Prefect of Britain sent urgent dispatches to Rome, invoking the
Emperor's own presence with the whole force of the Empire.

E. 5.--Severus, in spite of age and infirmity,[276] responded to the
call, and, in a marvellously short time, appeared in Britain, bringing
with him his worthless sons, Caracalla[277] and Geta[278]--"my
Antonines," as he fondly called them,[279] though his life was already
embittered by their wickedness,--and Geta's yet more worthless mother,
Julia Domna. Leaving her and her son in charge south of Hadrian's
Wall, Severus and Caracalla undertook a punitive expedition[280]
beyond it, characterized by ferocity so exceptional[281] that the
names both of Caledonians and Meatae henceforward disappear from
history. The Romans on this occasion penetrated further than even
Agricola had gone, and reached Cape Wrath, where Severus made careful
astronomical observations.[282]

E. 6.--But the cost was fearful. Fifty thousand Roman soldiers
perished through the rigour of the climate and the wiles of the
desperate barbarians; and Severus felt the north so untenable that he
devoted all his energies to strengthening Hadrian's Wall,[283] so as
to render it an impregnable barrier beyond which the savages might be
allowed to range as they pleased.[284]

E. 7.--In what, exactly, his additions consisted we do not know, but
they were so extensive that his name is no less indissolubly connected
with the Wall than that of Hadrian. The inscriptions of the latter
found in the "Mile Castles" show that the line was his work, and
that he did not merely, as some have thought, build the series of
"stations" to support the "Vallum." But it is highly probable that
Severus so strengthened the Wall both in height and thickness as to
make it[285] far more formidable than Hadrian had left it. For now it
was intended to be the actual _limes_ of the Empire.


Severus completes Hadrian's Wall--Mile
theories--Evidence--Remains--Coins--Altars--Mithraism--Inscription to
Julia Domna--"Written Rock" on Gelt--Cilurnum aqueduct.

F. 1.--It is to Severus, therefore, that we owe the final development
of this magnificent rampart, the mere remains of which are impressive
so far beyond all that description or drawing can tell. Only those
who have stood upon the heights by Peel Crag and seen the long line of
fortification crowning ridge after ridge in endless succession as
far as the eye can reach, can realize the sense of the vastness and
majesty of Roman Imperialism thus borne in upon the mind. And if this
is so now that the Wall is a ruin scarcely four feet high, and, but
for its greater breadth, indistinguishable from the ordinary local
field-walls, what must it have been when its solid masonry rose to
a height of over twenty feet; with its twenty-three strong
fortresses[286] for the permanent quarters of the garrison, its
great gate-towers[287] at every mile for the accommodation of the
detachments on duty, and its series of watch-turrets which, at every
three or four hundred yards, placed sentinels within sight and call of
each other along the whole line from sea to sea?

F. 2.--Of all this swarming life no trace now remains. So entirely did
it cease to be that the very names of the stations have left no shadow
of memories on their sites. Luguvallum at the one end, and Pons
Aelii at the other, have revived into importance as Carlisle and
Newcastle,[288] but of the rest few indeed remain save as solitary
ruins on the bare Northumbrian fells tenanted only by the flock and
the curlew. But this very solitude in which their names have perished
has preserved to us the means of recovering them. Thanks to it there
is no part of Britain so rich in Roman remains and Roman inscriptions.
At no fewer than twelve of these "stations" such have been already
found relating to troops whom we know from the 'Notitia' to have been
quartered at given spots _per lineam valli_. A Dacian cohort (for
example) has thus left its mark at Birdoswald, and an Asturian
at Chesters, thereby stamping these sites as respectively the
_Amboglanna_ and _Cilurnum_, whose Dacian and Asturian garrisons the
'Notitia' records. The old walls of Cilurnum, moreover, are still
clothed with a pretty little Pyrenaean creeper, _Erinus Hispanicus_,
which these Asturian exiles must have brought with them as a memorial
of their far-off home.

F. 3.--Many such small but vivid touches of the past meet those who
visit the Wall. At "King Arthur's Well," for example, near Thirlwall,
the tiny chives growing in the crevices of the rock are presumably
descendants of those acclimatized there by Roman gastronomy. At
Borcovicus ("House-steads") the wheel-ruts still score the pavement;
at Cilurnum the hypocaust of the bath is still blackened with smoke,
and at various points the decay of Roman prestige is testified to by
the walling up of one half or the other in the wide double gates which
originally facilitated the sorties of the garrisons.

F. 4.--The same decay is probably the key to the problem of the
"Vallum," that standing crux to all archaeological students of the
Wall. Along the whole line this mysterious earthwork keeps company
with the Wall on the south, sometimes in close contact, sometimes
nearly a mile distant. It has been diversely explained as an earlier
British work, as put up by the Romans to cover the fatigue-parties
engaged in building the Wall, and as a later erection intended to
defend the garrison against attacks from the rear. Each of these views
has been keenly debated; the last having the support of the late Dr.
Bruce, the highest of all authorities on the mural antiquities. And
excavations, even the very latest, have produced results which are
claimed by each of the rival theories.[289]

F. 5.--Quite possibly all are in measure true. The "Vallum" as we now
see it is obviously meant for defence against a southern foe. But the
spade has given abundant evidence that the rampart has been altered,
and that, in many places at least, it at one time faced northwards.
Though not an entirely satisfactory solution of the problem, the
following sequence of events would seem, on the whole, best to explain
the phenomena with which we are confronted. Originally a British
earthwork[290] defending the Brigantes against the cattle-lifting
raids of their restless northern neighbours, the "Vallum" was
adapted[291] for like purposes by the Romans, and that more than once.
After being thus utilized, first, perhaps, by Agricola, and afterwards
by Hadrian (for the protection of his working-parties engaged in
quarrying stone for the outer fortifications), it became useless when
the Wall was finally completed,[292] and remained a mere unfortified
mound so long as the Roman power in Southern Britain continued

But when the garrison of the Wall became liable to attacks from
the rear, the "Vallum" was once more repaired, very probably by
Theodosius,[293] and this time with a ditch to the south, to enable
the soldiers to meet, if needful, a simultaneous assault of Picts in
front and Scots[294] or Saxons behind. Weak though it was as compared
to the Wall, it would still take a good deal of storming, if stoutly
held, and would effectually guard against any mere raid both the small
parties marching along the Military Way[295] from post to post, and
the cattle grazing along the rich meadows which frequently lie between
the two lines of fortification.

F.6.--As we have said, the line of country thus occupied teems with
relics of the occupation. Coins by the thousand, ornaments, fragments
of statuary, inscriptions to the Emperors, to the old Roman gods, to
the strange Pantheistic syncretisms of the later Mithraism[296], to
unknown (perhaps local) deities such as Coventina, records of
this, that, and the other body of troops in the garrison, personal
dedications and memorials--all have been found, and are still
constantly being found, in rich abundance. Of the whole number
of Romano-British inscriptions known, nearly half belong to the

F.7.--As an example of these inscriptions we may give one discovered
at Caervoran (the Roman _Magna_), and now in the Newcastle Antiquarian
Museum,[298] the interpretation of which has been a matter of
considerable discussion amongst antiquaries. It is written in letters
of the 3rd century and runs as follows:--



Here we have ten very rough trochaic lines:

    Imminet Leoni Virgo caelesti situ Spicifera, justi inventrix,
    urbium conditrix; Ex quis muneribus nosse contigit Deos. Ergo
    eadem Mater Divum, Pax, Virtus, Ceres, Dea Syria, lance vitam
    et jura pensitans. In caelo visum Syria sidus edidit Libyae
    colendum: inde cuncti didicimus. Ita intellexit, numine
    inductus tuo, Marcus Caecilius Donatianus, militans Tribunus
    in Praefecto, dono Principis.

This may be thus rendered:

    O'er the Lion hangs the Virgin, in her place in heaven, With
    her corn-ear;--justice-finder, city-foundress, she: And in
    them that do such office Gods may still be known. She, then,
    is the Gods' own Mother, Peace, Strength, Ceres, all; Syria's
    Goddess, in her Balance weighing life and Law. Syria sent
    this Constellation shining in her sky Forth for Libya's
    worship:--thence we all have learnt the lore. Thus hath
    come to understanding, by the Godhead led, Marcus Caecilius
    Donatianus Serving now as Tribune-Prefect, by the Prince's

F. 8.--These obscure lines Dr. Hodgkin refers to Julia Domna, the wife
of Severus, the one Emperor that Africa gave to the Roman world.
He was an able astrologer, and from early youth considered himself
destined by his horoscope for the throne. He was thus guided by
astrological considerations to take for his second wife a Syrian
virgin, whose nativity he found to forecast queenship. As his Empress
she shared in the aureole of divinity which rested upon all members
of the Imperial family. This theory explains the references in the
inscription to the constellation Virgo, with its chief star Spica,
having Leo on the one hand and Libra on the other, also to the Syrian
origin of Julia and her connection with Libya, the home of Severus.
It may be added that Dr. Hodgkin's view is confirmed by the fact that
this Empress figures, on coins found in Britain, as the Mother of
the Gods, and also as Ceres. The first line may possibly have special
reference to her influence in Britain during the reign of Severus
and her stepson[299] Caracalla (who was also her second husband), Leo
being a noted astrological sign of Britain.[300] The inscription was
evidently put up in recognition of promotion gained by her favour,
though the exact interpretation of _Tribunus in praefecto_ requires a
greater knowledge of Roman military nomenclature than we possess.
Dr. Hodgkin's "Tribune instead of Prefect" seems scarcely admissible

F. 9.--Another inscription which may be mentioned is that referred to
by Tennyson in 'Gareth and Lynette' (l. 172), which

  "the vexillary
  Hath left crag-carven over the streaming Gelt."[301]

This is one of the many such records in the quarries south of the Wall
telling of the labours of the fatigue-parties sent out by Severus
to hew stones for his mighty work, and cut on rocks overhanging the
river. It sets forth how a _vexillatio_[302] of the Second Legion
was here engaged, under a lieutenant [_optio_] named Agricola, in the
consulship of Aper and Maximus (A.D. 207);[303] perhaps as a guard
over the actual workers, who were probably a _corvée_ of impressed

F. 10.--Yet another inscription worth notice was unearthed in 1897,
and tells how a water supply to Cilurnum was brought from a source
in the neighbourhood through a subterraneous conduit by Asturian
engineers under Ulpius Marcellus (A.D. 160). That this should have
been done brings home to us the magnificent thoroughness with which
Rome did her work. Cilurnum stood on a pure and perennial stream, the
North Tyne, with a massively-fortified bridge, and thus could never be
cut off from water; it was only some six acres in total area; yet in
addition to the river it received a water supply which would now be
thought sufficient for a fair-sized town.[304] Well may Dr. Hodgkin
say that "not even the Coliseum of Vespasian or the Pantheon of
Agrippa impresses the mind with a sense of the majestic strength of
Rome so forcibly" as works like this, merely to secure the passage of
a "little British stream, unknown to the majority even of Englishmen."


Death of Severus--Caracalla and Geta--Roman citizenship--Extended
to veterans--_Tabulae honestae, missionis_--Bestowed on all British

G. 1.--This mighty work kept Severus in Britain for the rest of his
life. He incessantly watched over its progress, and not till it was
completed turned his steps once more (A.D. 211) towards Rome. But he
was not to reach the Imperial city alive. Scarcely had he completed
the first stage of the journey than, at York, omens of fatal import
foretold his speedy death. A negro soldier presented him with a
cypress crown, exclaiming, "_Totum vicisti, totum fuisti. Nunc
Deus esto victor_."[305] When he would fain offer a sacrifice of
thanksgiving, he found himself by mistake at the dark temple of
Bellona; and her black victims were led in his train even to the
very door of his palace, which he never left again. Dark rumours were
circulated that Caracalla, who had already once attempted his father's
life, and was already intriguing with his stepmother, was at the
bottom of all this, and took good care that the auguries should be
fulfilled. Anyhow, Severus never left York till his corpse was carried
forth and sent off for burial at Rome. With his last breath he is said
solemnly to have warned "my Antonines" that upon their own conduct
depended the peace and well-being of the Empire which he had so ably
won for them.[306]

G. 2.--The warning was, as usual, in vain. Caracalla and Julia were
now free to work their will, and, having speedily got rid of her son
Geta, entered upon an incestuous marriage. The very Caledonians, whose
conjugal system was of the loosest,[307] cried shame;[308] but
the garrison of the Wall which kept them off was, as we have seen,
officered by Julia's creatures, and all beyond it was definitely
abandoned,[309] not to be recovered for two centuries.[310] The guilty
pair returned to Rome, and a hundred and thirty years elapsed before
another Augustus visited Britain.[311]

G. 3.--They left behind them no longer a subject race of mere
provincials, but a nation of full Roman citizens. For it was
Caracalla, seemingly, who, by extending it to the whole Roman
world, put the final stroke to the expansion, which had long been in
progress, of this once priceless privilege; with its right of appeal
to Caesar, of exemption from torture, of recognized marriage, and of
eligibility to public office. Originally confined strictly to natives
of Rome and of Roman Colonies, it was early bestowed _ipso facto_
on enfranchised slaves, and sometimes given as a compliment to
distinguished strangers. After the Social War (B.C. 90) it was
extended to all Italians, and Claudius (A.D. 50) allowed Messalina
to make it purchasable ("for a great sum," as both the Acts of the
Apostles and Dion Cassius inform us) by provincials.

G. 4.--And they could also earn it by service in the Imperial armies.
A bronze tablet, found at Cilurnum,[312] sets forth that Antoninus
Pius confers upon the _emeriti_, or time-expired veterans, of the
Gallic, Asturian, Celtiberian, Spanish, and Dacian cohorts in Britain,
who have completed twenty-five years' service with the colours, the
right of Roman citizenship, and legalizes their marriages, whether
existing or future.[313] As there is no reason to suppose that such
discharged soldiers commonly returned to their native land,
this system must have leavened the population of Britain with a
considerable proportion of Roman citizens, even before Caracalla's
edict. Besides its privileges, this freedom brought with it certain
liabilities, pecuniary and other; and it was to extend the area of
these that Caracalla took this apparently liberal step, which had
been at least contemplated by more worthy predecessors[314] on
philanthropic grounds. Any way, Britain was, by now, in the fullest
sense Roman.



Aballaba = Watch-cross
Branodunum = Brancaster
_Braboniacum_ = Ribchester
Brige = Broughton
_Caesaromagum = Chelmsford_
Calcaria = Tadcaster
Calleva = Silchester
Camboricum = Cambridge
Cataractonis = Catterick
_Clausentum = Southampton_
Colonia = Colchester
Concangium = Kendal
_Devonis = Devonport_
Dictis = Ambleside
Durobrivis = Rochester
Durolipons = Godmanchester
Durnovernum = Canterbury
_Etocetum = Uttoxeter_
Gobannium = Abergavenny
Isca Damnoniorum = Exeter
Isurium = Aldborough (York)
_Longovicum = Lancaster_
Lugovallum = Carlisle
Magna = Caervoran
Mancunium = Manchester
_Moridunum = Seaton
Muridunum = Caermarthen
Olikana = Ilkley_
Pons Aelii = Newcastle
Pontes = Staines
_Procolitia = Carrawburgh_
_Regnum = Chichester_
Segedunum = Wall's End
Spinae = Speen (Berks)
Vindoballa = Rutchester
Vindomara = Ebchester
Vindolana = Little Chesters


Alaunus Fl. = Tweed
Belisama Est. = Mouth of Mersey
_Cunio Fl. = Conway_
Setantion Est. = Mouth of Ribble
Seteia Est. = Mouth of Dee
Tava Est. = Firth of Tay
_Tuerobis Fl. = Tavy_
Vedra Fl. = Wear


Epidium Pr. = Mull of Cantire
Herculis Pr. = Hartland Point
Noranton Pr. = Mull of Galloway
Orcas Pr. = Dunnet Head
Taexalum Pr. = Kinnaird Head

N.B.--Many of these names vary notably in our several authorities:
e.g. Manna is also written Mona, Monaoida, Monapia, Mevania.




Era of Pretenders--Probus--Vandlebury--First notice of Saxons--Origin
of name--Count of the Saxon Shore--Carausius--Allectus--Last
Romano-British coinage--Britain Mistress of the Sea--Reforms of
Diocletian--Constantius Chlorus--Re-conquest of Britain--Diocletian
provinces--Diocletian persecution--The last "Divus"--General
scramble for Empire--British Army wins for Constantine--Christianity

A. 1.--After the death of Severus in A.D. 211, Roman historians tell
us nothing more concerning Britain till we come to the rise of the
only other Emperor who died at York, Constantius Chlorus. During the
miserable period which the wickedness of Caracalla brought upon the
Roman world, when Pretender after Pretender flits across the scene,
most to fail, some for a moment to succeed, but all alike to end their
brief course in blood, our island remained fairly quiet. The Army of
Britain made one or two futile pronunciamentos (the least unsuccessful
being those for Postumus in A.D. 258, and Victorinus in A.D. 265), and
in 277 the Emperor Probus, probably to keep it in check, leavened it
with a large force recruited from amongst his Vandal prisoners,[316]
whose name may, perhaps, still survive in Vandlebury Camp, on the
Gog-Magog[317] Hills, near Cambridge. But not till the energy and
genius of Diocletian began to bring back to order the chaos into which
the Roman world had fallen does Britain play any real part in the
higher politics.

A. 2.--Then, however, we suddenly find ourselves confronted with names
destined to exert a supreme influence on the future of our land. The
Saxons from the Elbe, and the Franks from the Rhine had already begun
their pirate raids along the coasts to the westwards.[318] Each tribe
derived its name from its peculiar national weapon (the Franks from
their throwing-axe (_franca_),[319] the Saxons from the _saexes_, long
murderous knives, snouted like a Norwegian knife of the present day,
which they used with such deadly effect);[320] and their appearance
constituted a new and fearful danger to the Roman Empire. Never, since
the Mediterranean pirates were crushed by Pompey (B.C. 66) had it been
exposed to attacks by sea. A special effort was needed to meet this
new situation, and we find, accordingly, a new officer now added to
the Imperial muster,--the Count of the Saxon Shore. His jurisdiction
extended over the northern coast of Gaul and the southern and eastern
shores of Britain, the head-quarters of his fleet being at Boulogne.

A. 3.--The first man to be placed in this position was Carausius,[321]
a Frisian adventurer of low birth, but great military reputation,
to which unfortunately he proved unequal. When his command was not
followed by the looked-for putting-down of the pirate raiders, he was
suspected, probably with truth, of a secret understanding with them.
The Government accordingly sent down orders for his execution, to
which he replied (A.D. 286) by open rebellion, took the pirate fleets
into his pay, and having thus got the undisputed command of the sea,
succeeded in maintaining himself as Emperor in Britain for the rest of
his life.

A. 4.--His reign and that of his successor (and murderer) Allectus
are marked by the last and most extraordinary development of
Romano-British coinage. Since the time of Caracalla no coins which can
be definitely proved to deserve this name are found; but now, in less
than ten years, our mints struck no fewer than five hundred several
issues, all of different types. Nearly all are of bronze, with the
radiated head of the Emperor on the obverse, and on the reverse
devices of every imaginable kind. The British Lion once more figures,
as in the days of Cymbeline; and we have also the Roman Wolf, the
Sea-horse, the Cow (as a symbol of Prosperity), Plenty, Peace,
Victory, Prudence, Health, Safety, Might, Good Luck, Glory, all
symbolized in various ways. But the favourite type of all is the
British warship; for now Britannia, for the first time, ruled the
waves, and was, indeed, so entirely Mistress of the Sea that her fleet
appeared even in Mediterranean waters.[322] The vessels figured are
invariably not Saxon "keels," but classical galleys, with their rams
and outboard rowing galleries, and are always represented as cleared
for action (when the great mainsail and its yard were left on shore).

A. 5.--The usurpation of Carausius, "the pirate," as the Imperial
panegyrists called him,[323] brought Diocletian's great reform of
the Roman administration within the scope of practical politics in
Britain. The old system of Provinces, some Imperial, some Senatorial,
with each Pro-praetor or Pro-consul responsible only and immediately
to the central government at Rome, had obviously become outgrown. And
the Provinces themselves were much too large. Diocletian accordingly
began by dividing the Empire into four "Prefectures," two in the east
and two in the west. Each pair was to be under one of the co-Augusti,
who again was to entrust one of his Prefectures to the "Caesar"[324]
or heir-apparent of his choice. Thus Diocletian held the East,
while Galerius, his "Caesar," took the Prefecture of Illyricum. His
colleague Maximian, as Augustus of the West, ruled in Italy; and the
remaining Prefecture, that of "the Gauls," fell to the Western
Caesar, Constantius Chlorus. Each Prefecture, again, was divided into
"Dioceses" (that of Constantius containing those of Britain, Gaul,
Spain, and Mauretania), each under a "Vicar," and comprising a certain
number of "Provinces" (that of Britain having four). Thus a regular
hierarchy with rank above rank of responsibility was established,
and so firmly that Diocletian's system lasted (so far as provincial
government was concerned) till the very latest days of the Roman

A. 6.--When Constantius thus became Caesar of the West, his first
task was to restore Britain to the Imperial system. He was already, it
seems, connected with the island, and had married a British lady
named Helen.[325] Their son Constantine, a youth of special promise
(according to the panegyrists), had been born at York, about A.D.
274, and now appeared on the scene to aid his father's operations
with supernatural speed, "_quasi divino quodam curriculo_."[326]
Extraordinary celerity, indeed, marked all these operations. Allectus
was on his guard, with one squadron at Boulogne to sweep the coast
of Gaul, and another cruising in the Channel. By a sudden dash
Constantius [in A.D. 296] seized the mouth of Boulogne harbour, threw
a boom across it, "_defixis in aditu trabibus_," and effectually
barred the pirates from access to the sea.[327] Meanwhile the fleet
which he had been building simultaneously in various Gallic ports was
able to rendezvous undisturbed at Havre.

A. 7.--His men were no expert mariners like their adversaries; and,
for this very reason, were ready, with their Caesar at their head,
to put to sea in threatening weather, which made their better-skilled
pilots hesitate. "What can we fear?" was the cry, "Caesar is with us."
Dropping down the Seine with the tide on a wild and rainy morning,
they set sail with a cross wind, probably from the north-east, a rare
thing with ancient ships. As they neared the British coast the breeze
sank to a dead calm, with a heavy mist lying on the waveless sea, in
which the fleet found it impossible to keep together. One division,
with Constantius himself on board, made their land-fall somewhere in
the west, perhaps at Exeter, the other far to the east, possibly at

A. 8.--But the wonderful luck which attended Constantius, and on which
his panegyrists specially dwell, made all turn out for the best. The
mist enabled both his divisions to escape the notice of the British
fleet, which was lying off the Isle of Wight on the watch for him; and
the unexpected landing at two such distant points utterly demoralized
the usurper. Of the large force which had been mustered for land
defence, only the Frankish auxiliaries could be got together in time
to meet Constantius--who, having burnt his ships (for his only hope
now lay in victory), was marching, with his wonted speed, straight on
London. One battle,[328] in which scarcely a single Roman fell on the
British side, was enough; the corpse of Allectus [_ipse vexillarius
latrocinii_] was found, stripped of the Imperial insignia, amongst the
heaps of slain barbarians, and the routed Franks fled to London. Here,
while they were engaged in sacking the city before evacuating it,
they were set upon by the eastern division of the Roman army (under
Asclepiodotus the Praetorian Prefect)[329] and slaughtered almost to
a man. The rescued metropolis eagerly welcomed its deliverers, and the
example was followed by the rest of Britain; the more readily that the
few surviving Franks were distributed throughout the land to perish in
the provincial amphitheatres.

A. 9.--The Diocletian system was now introduced; and, instead of
Hadrian's old divisions of Upper and Lower Britain, the island south
of his Wall was distributed into four Provinces, "Britannia Prima,"
"Britannia Secunda," "Maxima Caesariensis," and "Flavia Caesariensis."
That the Thames, the Severn, and the Humber formed the frontier lines
between these new divisions is probable. But their identification,
in the current maps of Roman Britain, with the later Wessex, Wales,
Northumbria, and Mercia (with East Anglia), respectively, is purely
conjectural.[330] All that we know is that when the district between
Hadrian's Wall and Agricola's Rampart was reconquered in 369, it was
made a fifth British Province under the name Valentia. The Governor
of each Province exercised his functions under the "Vicar" of the
"Diocese," an official of "Respectable" rank--the second in precedence
of the Diocletian hierarchy (exclusive of the Imperial Family).

A. 10.--With the Diocletian administration necessarily came the
Diocletian Persecution--an essential feature of the situation. There
is no reason to imagine that the great reforming Emperor had, like
his colleague Maximian, any personal hatred for Christianity. But
Christianity was not among the _religiones licitae_ of the Empire.
Over and over again it had been pronounced by Imperial Rescript
unlawful. This being so, Diocletian saw in its toleration merely
one of those corruptions of lax government which it was his special
mission to sweep away, and proceeded to deal with it as with any other
abuse,--to be put down with whole-hearted vigour and rigour.

A. 11.--The Faith had by this time everywhere become so widespread
that the good-will of its professors was a political power to be
reckoned with. Few of the passing Pretenders of the Era of Confusion
had dared to despise it, some had even courted it; and thus throughout
the Empire the Christian hierarchy had been established, and Christian
churches been built everywhere; while Christians swarmed in every
department of the Imperial service,--their neglect of the official
worship winked at, while they, in turn, were not vigorous in rebuking
the idolatry of their heathen fellow-servants. Now all was changed.
The sacred edifices were thrown down, or (as in the famous case of St.
Clement's at Rome) made over for heathen worship, the sacred books and
vessels destroyed, and every citizen, however humble, had to produce
a _libellus_,[331] or magisterial certificate, testifying that he had
formally done homage to the Gods of the State, by burning incense at
their shrines, by pouring libations in their name, and by partaking of
the victims sacrificed upon their altars. Torture and death were the
lot of all recusants; and to the noble army of martyrs who now sealed
their testimony with their blood Britain is said (by Gildas) to have
contributed a contingent of no fewer than seventeen thousand, headed
by St. Alban at Verulam.

A. 12.--So thorough-going a persecution the Church had never known.
But it came too late for Diocletian's purpose; and it was probably
the latent consciousness of his failure that impelled him, in 305,
to resign the purple and retire to his cabbage-garden at Dyrrhachium.
Maximian found himself unwillingly obliged to retire likewise; and the
two Caesars, Galerius and Constantius, became, by the operation of the
new constitution, _ipso facto_ Augusti.

A. 13.--But already the mutual jealousy and distrust in which that
constitution was so soon to perish began to manifest themselves.
Galerius, though properly only Emperor of the East, seized on Rome,
and with it on the person of the young Constantine, whom he hoped
to keep as hostage for his father's submission. The youth, however,
contrived to flee, and post down to join Constantius in Gaul,
slaughtering every stud of relays along the entire road to delay his
pursuers. Both father and son at once sailed for Britain, where the
former shortly died, like Severus, at York. With their arrival the
persecution promptly ceased;[332] for Helena, at least, was an ardent
Christian, and her husband well-affected to the Faith. Yet, on his
death, he was, like his predecessors, proclaimed _Divus_; the last
formal bestowal of that title being thus, like the first,[333]
specially connected with Britain. Constantius was buried, according
to Nennius,[334] at Segontium, wherever that may have been; and
Constantine, though not yet even a Caesar, was at once proclaimed by
the soldiers (at his native York) Augustus in his father's room.

A. 14.--This was the signal for a whole outburst of similar
proclamations all over the Roman world, Licinius, Constantine's
brother-in-law, declared himself Emperor at Carnutum, Maxentius,
son of Maximian and son-in-law of Galerius, in Rome, Severus in the
Illyrian provinces, and Maximin (who had been a Caesar) in Syria.
Galerius still reigned, and even Maximian revoked his resignation
and appeared once more as Augustus. But one by one this medley of
Pretenders swept each other away, and the survival of the fittest was
exemplified by the final victory of Constantine over them all. For
a few years he bided his time, and then, at the head of the British
army, marched on Rome. Clear-sighted enough to perceive that events
were irresistibly tending to the triumph of Christianity, he declared
himself the champion of the Faith; and it was not under the Roman
Eagle, but the Banner of Christ,[335] that his soldiers fought and
won. Coins of his found in Britain, bearing the Sacred Monogram which
led his men to the crowning victory of 312 at the Milvian Bridge (the
intertwined letters [Greek: Chi] and [Greek: Rho] between [Greek:
Alpha] and [Greek: Omega], the whole forming the word [Greek: ARChÔ],
"I reign"), with the motto _Hoc Signo Victor Eris_, testify to the
special part taken by our country in the establishment of our Faith
as the officially recognized religion of Rome,--that is to say, of the
whole civilized world. And henceforward, as long as Britain remained
Roman at all, it was a monarch of British connection who occupied
the Imperial throne. The dynasties of Constantius, Valentinian, and
Theodosius, who between them (with the brief interlude of the reign
of Julian) fill the next 150 years (300-450), were all markedly
associated with our island. So, indeed, was Julian also.


Spread of Gospel--Arianism--Britain orthodox--Last
Imperial visit--Heathen temples stripped--British
Emperors--Magnentius--Gratian--Julian--British corn-trade--First
inroad of Picts and Scots--Valentinian--Saxon raids--Campaign of
Theodosius--Re-conquest of Valentia.

B. 1.--For a whole generation after the triumph of Constantine
tranquillity reigned in Britain. The ruined Christian churches were
everywhere restored, and new ones built; and in Britain, as elsewhere,
the Gospel spread rapidly and widely--the more so that the Church here
was but little troubled[336] by the desperate struggle with Arianism
which was convulsing the East. Britain, as Athanasius tells us, gave
an assenting vote to the decisions of Nicaea [[Greek: sumpsêphos
etunchane]], and British Bishops actually sat in the Councils of Arles
(314) and of Ariminum (360).

B. 2.--The old heathen worship still continued side by side with the
new Faith; but signs soon appeared that the Church would tolerate no
such rivalry when once her power was equal to its suppression. Julius
Firmicus (who wrote against "Profane Religions" in 343) implores
the sons of Constantine to continue their good work of stripping the
temples and melting down the images;--in special connection with
a visit paid by them that year to Britain[337] (our last Imperial
visit), when they had actually been permitted to cross the Channel
in winter-time; an irrefragable proof of Heaven's approval of their
iconoclasm. It is highly probable that they pursued here also a course
at once so pious and so profitable, and that the fanes of the ancient
deities but lingered on in poverty and neglect till finally suppressed
by Theodosius (A.D. 390).

B. 3.--And now Britain resumed her _rôle_ of Emperor-maker.[338]
After the death of Constans, (A.D. 350), Magnentius, an officer in the
Gallic army of British birth, set up as Augustus, and was supported
by Gratian, the leader of the Army of Britain, and by his son
Valentinian. Magnentius himself had his capital at Treves, and
for three years reigned over the whole Prefecture of the Gauls. He
professed a special zeal for orthodoxy, and was the first to introduce
burning, as the appropriate punishment for heresy, into the penal code
of Christendom. Meanwhile his colleague Decentius advanced against
Constantius, and was defeated, at Nursa on the Drave, with such awful
slaughter that the old Roman Legions never recovered from the shock.
Henceforward the name signifies a more or less numerous body, more or
less promiscuously armed, such as we find so many of in the 'Notitia.'
Magnentius, in turn, was slain (A.D. 353), and the supreme command in
Britain passed to the new Caesar of the West, Julian "the Apostate."

B. 4.--Under him we first find our island mentioned as one of the
great corn-growing districts of the Empire, on which Gaul was able to
draw to a very large extent for the supply of her garrisons. No fewer
than eight hundred wheat-ships sailed from our shores on this errand;
a number which shows how large an area of the island must have been
brought under cultivation, and how much the country had prospered
during the sixty years of unbroken internal peace which had followed
on the suppression of Allectus.

B. 5.--That peace was now to be broken up. The northern tribes had
by this recovered from the awful chastisement inflicted upon them by
Severus,[339] and, after an interval of 150 years, once more (A.D.
362) appeared south of Hadrian's Wall. Whether as yet they _burst
through_ it is uncertain; for now we find a new confederacy of
barbarians. It is no longer that of Caledonians and Meatae, but of
Picts and Scots. And these last were seafarers. Their home was not in
Britain at all, but in the north of Ireland. In their "skiffs"[340]
they were able to turn the flank of the Roman defences, and may well
have thus introduced their allies from beyond Solway also. Anyhow,
penetrate the united hordes did into the quiet cornfields of Roman
Britain, repeating their raids ever more frequently and extending them
ever more widely, till their spearmen were cut [Errata: to] pieces in
450 at Stamford by the swords of the newly-arrived English.[341]

B. 6.--For the moment they were driven back without much difficulty,
by Lupicinus, Julian's Legate (the first Legate we hear of in Britain
since Lollius Urbicus), who, when the death of Constantius II. (in
361) had extinguished that royal line, aided his master to become
"_Dominus totius orbis_"--as he is called in an inscription[342]
describing his triumphant campaigns "_ex oceano Britannico_." And
after "the victory of the Galilaean" (363) had ended Julian's brief
and futile attempt to restore the Higher Paganism (to which several
British inscriptions testify),[343] it was again to an Emperor from
Britain that there fell the Lordship of the World--Valentinian, son
of Gratian, whose dynasty lasted out the remaining century of
Romano-British history.

B. 7.--His reign was marked in our land by a life-and-death struggle
with the inrushing barbarians. The Picts and Scots were now joined by
yet another tribe, the cannibal[344] Attacotti[345] of Valentia, and
their invasions were facilitated by the simultaneous raids of the
Saxon pirates (with whom they may perhaps have been actually in
concert) along the coast. The whole land had been wasted, and more
than one Roman general defeated, when Theodosius, father of the Great
Emperor, was sent, in 368, to the rescue. Crossing from Boulogne to
Richborough in a lucky calm,[346] and fixing his head-quarters at
London, or Augusta, as it was now called [_Londinium vetus oppidum,
quod Augustam posteritas apellavit_], he first, by a skilful
combination of flying columns, cut to pieces the scattered hordes of
the savages as they were making off with their booty, and finally
not only drove them back beyond the Wall, which he repaired and
re-garrisoned,[347] but actually recovered the district right up to
Agricola's rampart, which had been barbarian soil ever since the
days of Severus.[348] It was now (369) formed into a fifth British
province, and named Valentia in honour of Valens, the brother and
colleague of the Emperor.

B. 8.--The Twentieth Legion, whose head-quarters had so long been at
Chester, seems to have been moved to guard this new province. Forty
years later Claudian speaks of it as holding the furthest outposts in
Britain, in his well-known description of the dying Pict:

  "Venit et extremis legio praetenta Britannis,
  Quae Scoto dat frena truci, ferroque notatas
  Perlegit exsangues Picto moriente figuras."

  ["From Britain's bound the outpost legion came,
  Which curbs the savage Scot, and fading sees
  The steel-wrought figures on the dying Pict."]

The same poet makes Theodosius fight and conquer even in the Orkneys
and in Ireland;

  "--maduerunt Saxone fuso
  Orcades; incaluit Pictorum sanguine Thule;
  Scotorum cumulos flevit glacialis Ierne."[349]

  ["With Saxon slaughter flowed the Orkney strand,
  With Pictish blood cold Thule warmer grew;
  And icy Erin wept her Scotchmen slain."]

The relief, however, was but momentary. Five years later (374) another
great Saxon raid is recorded; yet eight years more and the Picts and
Scots have again to be driven from the land; and in the next decade
their attacks became incessant.


Roman evacuation of Britain begun--Maximus--Settlement of
Brittany--Stilicho restores the Wall--Radagaisus invades
Italy--Twentieth Legion leaves Britain--Britain in the
'Notitia'--Final effort of British Army--The last Constantine--Last
Imperial Rescript to Britain--Sack of Rome by Alaric--Collapse of
Roman rule in Britain.

C. 1.--By this time the evacuation of Britain by the Roman soldiery
had fairly begun. Maximus, the last victor over the Scots, the "Pirate
of Richborough," as Ausonius calls him, set up as Emperor (A.D. 383);
and the Army of Britain again marched on Rome, and again, as under
Constantine, brought its leader in triumph to the Capitol (A.D. 387).
But this time it did not return. When Maximus was defeated and slain
(A.D. 388) at Aquileia by the Imperial brothers-in-law Valentinian II.
and Theodosius the Great[350] (sons of the so-named leaders connected
with Britain), his soldiers, as they retreated homewards, straggled
on the march; settling, amid the general confusion, here and there,
mostly in Armorica, which now first began to be called Brittany.[351]
This tale rests only on the authority of Nennius, but it is far from
improbable, especially as his sequel--that a fresh legion dispatched
to Britain by Stilicho (in 396) once more repelled the Picts and
Scots, and re-secured the Wall--is confirmed by Claudian, who makes
Britain (in a sea-coloured cloak and bearskin head-gear) hail Stilicho
as her deliverer:

    Inde Caledonio velata Britannia monstro, Ferro picta genas,
    cujus vestigia verrit Coerulus, Oceanique aestum mentitur,
    amictus: "Me quoque vicinis percuntem gentibus," inquit,
    "Munivit Stilichon, totam quum Scotus Iernen Movit, et infesto
    spumavit remige Tethys. Illius effectum curis, ne tela timerem
    Scotica, ne Pictum tremerem, ne litore toto Prospicerem dubiis
    venturum Saxona ventis."[352]

    [Then next, with Caledonian bearskin cowled, Her cheek
    steel-tinctured, and her trailing robe Of green-shot blue,
    like her own Ocean's tide, Britannia spake: "Me too," she
    cried, "in act To perish 'mid the shock of neighbouring
    hordes, Did Stilicho defend, when the wild Scot All Erin
    raised against me, and the wave Foamed 'neath the stroke of
    many a foeman's oar. So wrought his pains that now I fear no
    more Those Scottish darts, nor tremble at the Pict, Nor mark,
    where'er to sea mine eyes I turn, The Saxon coming on each
    shifting wind."]

C. 2.--Which legion it was which Stilicho sent to Britain is much more
questionable. The Roman legions were seldom moved from province to
province, and it is perhaps more probable that he filled up the three
quartered in the island to something like their proper strength. But
a crisis was now at hand which broke down all ordinary rules. Rome was
threatened with such a danger as she had not known since Marius, five
hundred years before, had destroyed the Cimbri and Teutones (B.C.
101). A like horde of Teutonic invaders, nearly half a million
strong, came pouring over the Alps, under "Radagaisus the Goth," as
contemporary historians call him, though his claim, to Gothic lineage
is not undisputed. And these were not, like Alaric and his Visigoths,
who were to reap the fruits of this effort, semi-civilized Christians,
but heathen savages of the most ferocious type. Every nerve had to be
strained to crush them; and Stilicho did crush them. But it was at a
fearful cost. Every Roman soldier within reach had to be swept to the
rescue, and thus the Rhine frontier was left defenceless against the
barbarian hordes pressing upon it. Vandals, Sueves, Alans, Franks,
Burgundians, rushed tumultuously over the peaceful and fertile fields
of Gaul, never to be driven forth again.

C. 3.--Of the three British legions one only seems to have been thus
withdrawn,--the Twentieth, whose head-quarters had been so long at
Chester, and whose more recent duty had been to garrison the outlying
province of Valentia, which may now perhaps have been again abandoned.
It seems to have been actually on the march towards Italy[353] when
there was drawn up that wonderful document which gives us our last and
completest glimpse of Roman Britain--the _Notitia Dignitatum Utriusque

C. 4.--This invaluable work sets forth in detail the whole machinery
of the Imperial Government, its official hierarchy, both civil
and military, in every land, and a summary of the forces under the
authority of each commander. A reference in Claudian would seem
to show that it was compiled by the industry of Celerinus, the
_Primicerius Notariorum_ or Head Clerk of the Treasury. The poet tells
us how this indefatigable statistician--

    "Cunctorum tabulas assignat honorum, Regnorum tractat numeros,
    constringit in unum Sparsas Imperii vires, cuneosque recenset
    Dispositos; quae Sarmaticis custodia ripis, Quae saevis
    objecta Getis, quae Saxona frenat Vel Scotum legio; quantae
    cinxere cohortes Oceanum, quanto pacatur milite Rhenus."[354]

    ["Each rank, each office in his lists he shows, Tells every
    subject realm, together draws The Empire's scattered force,
    recounts the hosts In order meet;--which Legion is on guard By
    Danube's banks, which fronts the savage Goth, Which curbs the
    Saxon, which the Scot; what bands Begird the Ocean, what keep
    watch on Rhine."]

To us the 'Notitia' is only known by the 16th-century copies of a
10th-century MS. which has now disappeared.[355] But these were made
with exceptional care, and are as nearly as may be facsimiles of the
original, even preserving its illuminated illustrations, including the
distinctive insignia of every corps in the Roman Army.

C. 5.--The number of these corps had, we find, grown erormously since
the days of Hadrian, when, as Dion Cassius tells us, there were 19
"Civic Legions" (of which three were quartered in Britain). No fewer
than 132 are now enumerated, together with 108 auxiliary bodies. But
we may be sure that each of these "legions" was not the complete Army
Corps of old,[356] though possibly the 25 of the First Class, the
_Legiones Palatinae_, may have kept something of their ancient
effectiveness. Indeed it is not wholly improbable that these alone
represent the old "civil" army; the Second and Third Class
"legions," with their extraordinary names ("Comitatenses" and
"Pseudo-Comitatenses"), being indeed merely so called by "courtesy,"
or even "sham courtesy."

C. 6.--In Britain we find the two remaining legions of the
old garrison, the Second, now quartered not at Caerleon but at
Richborough, under the Count of the Saxon Shore, and the Sixth under
the "Duke of the Britains," holding the north (with its head-quarters
doubtless, as of yore, at York, though this is not mentioned). Along
with each legion are named ten "squads" [_numeri_], which may perhaps
represent the ten cohorts into which legions were of old divided. The
word cohort seems to have changed its meaning, and now to signify
an independent military unit under a "Tribune." Eighteen of these,
together with six squadrons [_alae_] of cavalry, each commanded by a
"Praefect," form the garrison of the Wall;--a separate organization,
though, like the rest of the northern forces, under the Duke of the
Britains. The ten squads belonging to the Sixth Legion (each under a
Prefect) are distributed in garrison throughout Yorkshire,
Lancashire, and Westmoreland. Those of the Second (each commanded by a
"Praepositus") are partly under the Count of the Saxon Shore, holding
the coast from the Wash to Arundel,[357] partly under the "Count of
Britain," who was probably the senior officer in the island[358]
and responsible for its defence in general. Besides these bodies of
infantry the British Army comprised eighteen cavalry units; three,
besides the six on the Wall, being in the north, three on the Saxon
Shore, and the remaining six under the immediate command of the Count
of Britain, to whose troops no special quarters are assigned. Not a
single station is mentioned beyond the Wall, which supports the theory
that the withdrawal of the Twentieth Legion had involved the practical
abandonment of Valentia.[359]

C. 7.--The two Counts and the Duke were the military leaders of
Britain. The chief civil officer was the "respectable" Vicar of the
Diocese of Britain, one of the six Vicars under the "illustrious"
Pro-consul of Africa. Under him were the Governors of the five
Provinces, two of these being "Consulars" of "Right Renowned" rank
[_clarissimi_,] the other three "Right Perfect" [_perfectissimi_]
"Presidents." The Vicar was assisted by a staff of Civil Servants,
nine heads of departments being enumerated. Their names, however, have
become so wholly obsolete as to tell us nothing of their respective

C. 8.--Whatever these may have been they did not include the financial
administration of the Diocese, the general management of which was in
the hands of two officers, the "Accountant of Britain" [_Rationalis
Summarum Britanniarum_] and the "Provost of the London Treasury"
[_Praepositus thesaurorum Augustensium_].[360] Both these were
subordinates of the "Count of the Sacred Largesses" [_Comes Sacrarum
Largitionum_], one of the greatest officers of State, corresponding to
our First Lord of the Treasury, whose name reminds us that all public
expenditure was supposed to be the personal benevolence of His Sacred
Majesty the Emperor, and all sources of public revenue his personal
property. The Emperor, however, had actually in every province domains
of his own, managed by the Count of the Privy Purse [_Comes Rei
Privatae_], whose subordinate in Britain was entitled the "Accountant
of the Privy Purse for Britain" [_Rationalis Rei Privatae per
Britanniam_]. Both these Counts were "Illustrious" [_illustres_];
that is, of the highest order of the Imperial peerage below the "Right
Noble" [_nobilissimi_] members of the Imperial Family.

C. 9.--Such and so complete was the system of civil and military
government in Roman Britain up to the very point of its sudden and
utter collapse. When the 'Notitia' was compiled, neither Celerinus, as
he wrote, nor the officials whose functions and ranks he noted, could
have dreamt that within ten short years the whole elaborate fabric
would, so far as Britain was concerned, be swept away utterly and for
ever. Yet so it was.

C. 10.--For what was left of the British Army now made a last effort
to save the West for Rome, and once more set up Imperial Pretenders
of its own.[361] The first two of these, Marcus and Gratian, were
speedily found unequal to the post, and paid the usual penalty of such
incompetence; but the third, a private soldier named Constantine, all
but succeeded in emulating the triumph of his great namesake. For four
years (407-411) he was able to hold not only Britain, but Gaul and
Spain also under his sceptre; and the wretched Honorius, the unworthy
son and successor of Theodosius, who was cowering amid the marshes of
Ravenna, and had murdered his champion Stilicho, was fain to recognize
the usurper as a legitimate Augustus. Only by treachery was he put
down at last, the traitor being the commander of his British forces,
Gerontius. Both names continued for many an age favourites in British
nomenclature, and both have been swept into the cycle of Arturian
romance, the latter as "Geraint."

C. 11.--Neither Gerontius nor his soldiers ever got back to their old
homes in Britain. What became of them we do not know. But Zosimus[362]
tells us that Honorius now sent a formal rescript to the British
cities abrogating the Lex Julia, which forbade civilians to carry
arms, and bidding them look to their own safety. For now the end had
really come, and the Eternal City itself had been sacked by barbarian
hands. Never before and never since does history record a sacked city
so mildly treated by the conquerors. Heretics as the Visi-goths
were, they never forgot that the vanquished Catholics were their
fellow-Christians, and, barbarians as they were, they left an example
of mercy in victory which puts to the blush much more recent Christian
and civilized warfare.

C. 12.--But, for all that, the moral effect of Alaric's capture of
Rome was portentous, and shook the very foundations of civilization
throughout the world. To Jerome, in his cell at Bethlehem, the tidings
came like the shock of an earthquake. Augustine, as he penned his 'De
Civitate Dei,' felt the old world ended indeed, and the Kingdom of
Heaven indeed at hand. And in Britain the whole elaborate system of
Imperial civil and military government seems to have crumbled to the
ground almost at once. It is noticeable that the rescript of Honorius
is addressed simply to "the cities" of Britain, the local municipal
officers of each several place. No higher authority remained. The
Vicar of Britain, with his staff, the Count and Duke of the
Britains with their soldiery, the Count of the Saxon Shore with his
coastguard,--all were gone. It is possible that, as the deserted
provincials learnt to combine for defence, the Dictators they chose
from time to time to lead the national forces may have derived some
of their authority from the remembrance of these old dignities. "The
dragon of the great Pendragonship,"[363] the tufa of Caswallon
(633), and the purple of Cunedda[364] may well have been derived (as
Professor Rhys suggests) from this source. But practically the history
of Roman Britain ends with a crash at the Fall of Rome.


Beginning of English Conquest--Vortigern--Jutes in Thanet--Battle of
Stamford--Massacre of Britons--Valentinian III.--Latest Roman coin
found in Britain--Progress of Conquest--The Cymry--Survival of
Romano-British titles--Arturian Romances--Procopius--Belisarius--Roman
claims revived by Charlemagne--The British Empire.

D. 1.--Little remains to be told, and that little rests upon no
contemporary authority known to us. In Gildas, the nearest, writing in
the next century, we find little more than a monotonous threnody over
the awful visitation of the English Conquest, the wholesale and utter
destruction of cities, the desecration of churches, the massacre of
clergy and people. Nennius (as, for the sake of convenience, modern
writers mostly agree to call the unknown author of the 'Historia
Britonum') gives us legends of British incompetence and Saxon
treachery which doubtless represent the substantial features of the
break-up, and preserve, quite possibly, even some of the details. Bede
and the 'Anglo-Saxon Chronicle' assign actual dates to the various
events, but we have no means of testing their accuracy.

D. 2.--Broadly we know that the unhappy civilians, who were not only
without military experience, but had up to this moment been actually
forbidden to carry arms, naturally proved unable to face the ferocious
enemies who swarmed in upon them. They could neither hold the Wall
against the Picts nor the coast against the Saxons. It may well be
true that they chose a _Dux Britannorum_,[365] and that his name may
have been something like Vortigern, and that he (when a final appeal
for Roman aid proved vain)[366] may have taken into his pay (as
Carausius did) the crews of certain pirate "keels" [_chiulae_],[367]
and settled them in Thanet. The very names of their English captains,
"Hengist and Horsa," may not be so mythical as critics commonly
assume.[368] And the tale of the victory at Stamford, when the
spears of the Scottish invaders were cut to pieces by the
swords of the English mercenaries,[369] has a very true ring
about it. So has also the sequel, which tells how, when the inevitable
quarrel arose between employers and employed, the Saxon leader gave
the signal for the fray by suddenly shouting to his men, _Nimed eure
saxes_[370] (_i.e._ "Draw your knives!"), and massacred the hapless
Britons of Kent almost without resistance.

D. 3.--The date of this first English settlement is doubtful. Bede
fixes it as 449, which agrees with the order of events in Gildas, and
with the notice in Nennius that it was forty years after the end of
Roman rule in Britain [_transacto Romanorum in Britannia imperio_].
But Nennius also declares that this was in the fourth year of
Vortigern, and that his accession coincided with that of the nephew
and successor of Honorius, Valentinian III., son of Galla Placidia,
which would bring in the Saxons 428. It may perhaps be some very
slight confirmation of the later date, that Valentinian is the last
Emperor whose coins have been found in Britain.[371]

D. 4.--Anyhow, the arrival of the successive swarms of Anglo-Saxons
from the mouth of the Elbe, and their hard-won conquest of Eastern
Britain during the 5th century, is certain. The western half of the
island, from Clydesdale southwards, resisted much longer, and, in
spite of its long and straggling frontier, held together for more
than a century. Not till the decisive victory of the Northumbrians at
Chester (A.D. 607), and that of the West Saxons at Beandune (A.D. 614)
was this Cymrian federation finally broken into three fragments, each
destined shortly to disintegrate into an ever-shifting medley of petty
principalities. Yet in each the ideal of national and racial unity
embodied in the word Cymry[372] long survived; and titles borne to
this day by our Royal House, "Duke of Cornwall," "Prince of Wales,"
"Duke of Albany," are the far-off echoes, lingering in each, of the
Roman "Comes Britanniae" and "Dux Britanniarum." The three feathers of
the Principality may in like manner be traced to the _tufa_, or plume,
borne before the supreme authority amongst the Romans of old, as the
like are borne before the Supreme Head of the Roman Church to this
day. And age after age the Cymric harpers sang of the days when
British armies had marched in triumph to Rome, and the Empire had
been won by British princes, till the exploits of their mystical
"Arthur"[373] became the nucleus of a whole cycle of mediaeval
romance, and even, for a while, a real force in practical

D. 5.--And as the Britons never quite forgot their claims on the
Empire, so the Empire never quite forgot its claims on Britain. How
entirely the island was cut off from Rome we can best appreciate by
the references to it in Procopius. This learned author, writing under
Justinian, scarcely 150 years since the day when the land was fully
Roman, conceives of Britannia and Brittia as two widely distant
islands--the one off the coast of Spain, the other off the mouth
of the Rhine.[375] The latter is shared between the Angili,
Phrissones,[376] and Britons, and is divided _from North to
South_[377] by a mighty Wall, beyond which no mortal man can
breathe. Hither are ferried over from Gaul by night the souls of the
departed;[378] the fishermen, whom a mysterious voice summons to the
work, seeing no one, but perceiving their barks to be heavily sunk in
the water, yet accomplishing the voyage with supernatural celerity.

D. 6.--About the same date Belisarius offered to the Goths,[379] in
exchange for their claim to Sicily, which his victories had already
rendered practically nugatory, the Roman claims to Britain, "a much
larger island," which were equally outside the scope of practical
politics for the moment, but might at any favourable opportunity be
once more brought forward. And, when the Western Empire was revived
under Charlemagne, they were in fact brought forward, and actually
submitted to by half the island. The Celtic princes of Scotland, the
Anglians of Northumbria, and the Jutes of Kent alike owned the new
Caesar as their Suzerain. And the claim was only abrogated by the
triumph of the counter-claim first made by Egbert, emphasized by
Edward the Elder, and repeated again and again by our monarchs
their descendants, that the British Crown owes no allegiance to any
potentate on earth, being itself not only Royal, but in the fullest
sense Imperial.[380]


Survivals of Romano-British civilization--Romano-British
Church--Legends of its origin--St. Paul--St. Peter--Joseph
of Arimathaea--Glastonbury--Historical notices--Claudia and
Pudens--Pomponia--Church of St. Pudentiana--Patristic references
to Britain--Tertullian--Origen--Legend of Lucius--Native
Christianity--British Bishops at Councils--Testimony of Chrysostom and

E. 1.--Few questions have been more keenly debated than the extent to
which Roman civilization in Britain survived the English Conquest.
On the one hand we have such high authorities as Professor Freeman
assuring us that our forefathers swept it away as ruthlessly and as
thoroughly as the Saracens in Africa; on the other, those who consider
that little more disturbance was wrought than by the Danish invasions.
The truth probably lies between the two, but much nearer to the former
than the latter. The substitution of an English for the Roman name of
almost every Roman site in the country[381] could scarcely have taken
place had there been anything like continuity in their inhabitants.
Even the Roman roads, as we have seen,[382] received English
designations. We may well believe that most Romano-British
towns shared the fate of Anderida (the one recorded instance of
destruction),[383] and that the word "chester" was only applied to
the Roman _ruins_ by their destroyers.[384] But such places as London,
York, and Lincoln may well have lived on through the first generation
of mere savage onslaught, after which the English gradually began to
tolerate even for themselves a town life.

E. 2.--And though in the country districts the agricultural population
were swept away pitilessly to make room for the invaders,[385] till
the fens of Ely[386] and the caves of Ribblesdale[387] became the
only refuge of the vanquished, yet, undoubtedly, many must have
been retained as slaves, especially amongst the women, to leaven the
language of the conquerors with many a Latin word, and their ferocity
with many a recollection of the gentler Roman past.

E. 3.--And there was one link with that past which not all the
massacres and fire-raisings of the Conquest availed to break. The
Romano-British populations might be slaughtered, the Romano-British
towns destroyed, but the Romano-British Church lived on; the most
precious and most abiding legacy bestowed by Rome upon our island.

E. 4.--The origin of that Church has been assigned by tradition
to directly Apostolic sources. The often-quoted passage from
Theodoret,[388] of St. Paul having "brought help" to "the isles of the
sea" [[Greek: tais en to pelagei diakeimenais nêsois]], can scarcely,
however, refer to this island. No classical author ever uses the
word [Greek: pelagos] of the Oceanic waters; and the epithet [Greek:
diakeimenais], coming, as it does, in connection with the Apostle's
preaching in Italy and Spain, seems rather to point to the islands
between these peninsulas--Sardinia, Corsica, and the Balearic Islands.
But the well-known words of St. Clement of Rome,[389] that St. Paul's
missionary journeys extended to "the End of the West" [Greek: to terma
tês duseôs], were, as early as the 6th century, held to imply a visit
to Britain (for our island was popularly supposed by the ancients to
lie west of Spain).[390] The lines of Venantius (A.D. 580) even seem
to contain a reference to the tradition that he landed at Portsmouth:

    "Transit et Oceanum, vel qua facit insula portum, Quasque
    Britannus habet terras atque ultima Thule."

    ["Yea, through the ocean he passed, where the Port is made by
    an island, And through each British realm, and where the world
    endeth at Thule."]

E. 5.--The Menology of the Greek Church (6th century) ascribes the
organization of the British Church to the visitation, not of St. Paul,
but of St. Peter in person.

    [Greek: O Petros ... ehis Bretannian paraginetai. Entha dô
    cheirotribôsas [_sic_] kai polla tôn hakatanomatôn hethnôn
    eis tôn tou Christou pistin epispasamenos ... kai pollous
    toi logoi photisas tôs charitos, ekklaesias te sustêsamenos,
    episkopous te kai presbuterous kai diakonous
    cheipotonhêsas, dôdekatôi etei tou Kaisaros authis eis Rômên

    ["Peter ... cometh even unto Britain. Yea, there abode he
    long, and many of the lawless folk did he draw to the Faith of
    Christ ... and many did he enlighten with the Word of Grace.
    Churches, too, did he set up, and ordained bishops and priests
    and deacons. And in the twelfth year of Caesar[392] came he
    again unto Rome."]

The 'Acta Sanctorum' also mentions this tradition (filtered through
Simeon Metaphrastes), and adds that St. Peter was in Britain during
Boadicea's rebellion, when he incurred great danger.

E. 6--The 'Synopsis Apostolorum,' ascribed to Dorotheus (A.D. 180),
but really a 6th-century compilation, gives us yet another Apostolic
preacher, St. Simon Zelotes. This is probably due to a mere confusion
between [Greek: Mabritania] [Mauretania] and [Greek: Bretannia]. But
it is impossible to deny that the Princes of the Apostles _may_
both have visited Britain, nor indeed is there anything essentially
improbable in their doing so. We know that Britain was an object of
special interest at Rome during the period of the Conquest, and it
would be quite likely that the idea of simultaneously conquering
this new Roman dominion for Christ should suggest itself to the two
Apostles so specially connected with the Roman Church.[393]

E. 7.--But while we may _possibly_ accept this legend, it is otherwise
with the famous and beautiful story which ascribes the foundation of
our earliest church at Glastonbury to the pilgrimage of St. Joseph of
Arimathaea, whose staff, while he rested on Weary-all Hill, took root,
and became the famous winter thorn, which

    "Blossoms at Christmas, mindful of our Lord,"[394]

and who, accordingly, set up, hard by, a little church of wattle to be
the centre of local Christianity.

E. 8.--Such was the tale which accounted for the fact that this humble
edifice developed into the stateliest sanctuary of all Britain. We
first find it, in its final shape, in Geoffrey of Monmouth (1150);
but already in the 10th century the special sanctity of the shrine was
ascribed to a supernatural origin,[395] as a contemporary Life of St.
Dunstan assures us; and it is declared, in an undisputed Charter of
Edgar, to be "the first church in the Kingdom built by the disciples
of Christ." But no earlier reference is known; for the passages
cited from Gildas and Melkinus are quite untrustworthy. So striking a
phenomenon as the winter thorn would be certain to become an object
of heathen devotion;[396] and, as usual, the early preachers would
Christianize the local cult, as they Christianized the Druidical
figment of a Holy Cup (perhaps also local in its origin), into the
sublime mysticism of the Sangreal legend, connected likewise with
Joseph of Arimathaea.[397]

E. 9.--That the original church of Glaston was really of wattle
is more than probable, for the remains of British buildings thus
constructed have been found abundantly in the neighbouring peat. The
Arimathaean theory of its consecration became so generally accepted
that at the Council of Constance (1419) precedence was actually
accorded to our Bishops as representing the senior Church of
Christendom. But the oldest variant of the legend says nothing about
Arimathaea, but speaks only of an undetermined "Joseph" as the leader
[_decurio_][398] of twelve missionary comrades who with him settled
down at Glastonbury. And this may well be true. Such bands (as we
see in the Life of Columba) were the regular system in Celtic mission
work, and survived in that of the Preaching Friars:

    "For thirteen is a Covent, as I guess."[399]

E. 10.--And though such high authorities as Mr. Haddan have come to
the conclusion that Christianity in Britain was confined to a small
minority even amongst the Roman inhabitants of the island, and almost
vanished with them, yet the catena of references to British converts
can scarcely be thus set aside. They begin in Apostolic times and
in special connection with St. Paul. Martial tells us of a British
princess named Claudia Rufina[400] (very probably the daughter of that
Claudius Cogidubnus whom we meet in Tacitus as at once a British
King and an Imperial Legate),[2] whose beauty and wit made no little
sensation in Rome; whither she had doubtless been sent at once for
education and as a hostage for her father's fidelity. And one of
the most beautiful of his Epigrams speaks of the marriage of this
foreigner to a Roman of high family named Pudens, belonging to the
Gens Aemilia (of which the Pauline family formed a part):

    "Claudia, Rufe, meo nubet peregrina Pudenti,
    Macte esto taedis, O Hymenaee, suis.
    Diligat illa senem quondam; sed et ipsa marito,
    Tunc quoque cum fuerit, non videatur anus."[401]

    [To RUFUS. Claudia, from far-off climes, my Pudens weds: With
    choicest bliss, O Hymen, crown their heads! May she still love
    her spouse when gray and old, He in her age unfaded charms

It may have been in consequence of this marriage that Pudens joined
with Claudius Cogidubnus in setting up the Imperial Temple at
Chichester.[402] And the fact that Claudia was an adopted member of
the Rufine family shows that she was connected with the Gens Pomponia
to which this family belonged.

E. 11.--Now Aulus Plautius, the conqueror of Britain, had married
a Pomponia, who in A.D. 57 was accused of practising an illicit
religion, and, though pronounced guiltless by her husband (to whose
domestic tribunal she was left, as Roman Law permitted), passed
the rest of her life in retirement.[403] When we read of an illicit
religion in connection with Britain, our first thought is, naturally,
that Druidism is intended.[404] But there are strong reasons for
supposing that Pomponia was actually a Christian. The names of her
family are found in one of the earliest Christian catacombs in Rome,
that of Calixtus; and that Christianity had its converts in very
high quarters we know from the case of Clemens and Domitilla, closely
related to the Imperial throne.

E. 12.--Turning next to St. Paul's Second Epistle to Timothy, we find,
in close connection, the names of Pudens and Claudia (along with
that of the future Pope Linus) amongst the salutations from Roman
Christians. And recent excavations have established the fact that the
house of Pudens was used for Christian worship at this date, and is
now represented by the church known as St. Pudentiana.[405] That this
should have been so proves that this Pudens was no slave going under
his master's name (as was sometimes done), but a man of good position
in Rome. Short of actual proof it would be hard to imagine a series
of evidences more morally convincing that the Pudens and Claudia of
Martial are the Pudens and Claudia of St. Paul, and that they, as well
as Pomponia, were Christians. Whether, then, St. Paul did or did
not actually visit Britain, the earliest British Christianity is, at
least, closely connected with his name.

E. 13.--Neither legendary nor historical sources tell us of any
further development of British Christianity till the latter days of
the 2nd century. Then, however, it had become sufficiently widespread
to furnish a common-place for ecclesiastical declamation on
the all-conquering influence of the Gospel. Both Tertullian and
Origen[406] thus use it. The former numbers in his catalogue of
believing countries even the districts of Britain beyond the Roman
pale, _Britannorum inaccessa Romanis loca, Christo vero subdita_[407].
And in this lies the interest of his reference, as pointing to the
native rather than the Roman element being the predominant factor
in the British Church. For just at this period comes in the legend
preserved by Bede,[408] that a mission was sent to Britain by Pope
Eleutherius[409] in response to an appeal from "Lucius Britanniae
Rex." The story, which Bede probably got from the 'Catalogus
Pontificum,'[410] may be apocryphal; but it would never have been
invented had British Christianity been found merely or mainly in the
Roman veneer of the population. Modern criticism finds in it this
kernel of truth, that the persecution which gave the Gallican Church
the martyrs of Lyons, also sent her scattered refugees as missionaries
into the less dangerous regions of Britain;--those remoter parts, in
especial, where even the long arm of the Imperial Government could not
reach them.

E. 14.--The Picts, however, as a nation, remained savage heathens even
to the 7th century, and the bulk of our Christian population must
have been within the Roman pale; but little vexed, it would seem,
by persecution, till it came into conflict with the thorough-going
Imperialism of Diocletian.[411] Its martyrs were then numbered,
according to Gildas, by thousands, according to Bede by hundreds; and
their chief, St. Alban, at least, is a fairly established historical
entity.[412] Nor is there any reason to doubt that after Constantine
South Britain was as fully Christian as any country in Europe. In
the earliest days of his reign (A.D. 314) we find three bishops,[413]
together with a priest and a deacon, representing[414] the British
Church at the Council of Arles (which, amongst other things, condemned
the marriage of the "innocent divorcee"[415]). And the same number
figure in the Council of Ariminum (360), as the only prelates (out of
the 400) who deigned to accept from the Emperor the expenses of their
journey and attendance.

E. 15.--This Council was called by Constantius II. in the semi-Arian
interest, and not allowed to break up till after repudiating the
Nicene formula. But the lapse was only for a moment. Before the
decade was out Athanasius could write of Britain as notoriously
orthodox,[416] and before the century closes we have frequent
references to our island as a fully Christian and Catholic land.
Chrysostom speaks of its churches and its altars and "the power of
the Word" in its pulpits,[417] of its diligent study of Scripture and
Catholic doctrine,[418] of its acceptance of Catholic discipline,[419]
of its use of Catholic formulae: "Whithersoever thou goest," he says,
"throughout the whole world, be it to India, to Africa, or to Britain,
thou wilt find _In the beginning was the Word_."[420] Jerome, in turn,
tells of British pilgrimages to Jerusalem[421] and to Rome;[422] and,
in his famous passage on the world-wide Communion of the Roman See,
mentions Britain by name: "Nec altera Romanae Urbis Ecclesia, altera
totius orbis existimanda est. Et Galliae, et Britanniae, et Africa, et
Persis, et Oriens, et Indio, et omnes barbarae nationes, unum Christum
adorant, unam observant regulam veritatis."[423]

    ["Neither is the Church of the City of Rome to be held one,
    and that of the whole world another. Both Gaul and Britain
    and Africa and Persia and the East and India, and all the
    barbarian nations, adore one Christ, observe one Rule of


British Missionaries--Ninias--Patrick--Beatus--Heresiarchs--Pelagius
Fastidius--Pelagianism stamped out by Germanus--The Alleluia
Battle--Romano-British churches--Why so seldom found--Conclusion.

F. 1.--The fruits of all this vigorous Christian life soon showed
themselves in the Church of Britain by the evolution of noteworthy
individual Christians. First in order comes Ninias, the Apostle of the
Southern Picts, commissioned to the work, after years of training at
Rome, by Pope Siricius (A.D. 394), and fired by the example of St.
Martin, the great prelate of Gaul. To this saint (or, to speak more
exactly, under his invocation) Ninias, on hearing of his death in A.D.
400, dedicated his newly-built church at Whithern[424] in Galloway,
the earliest recorded example of this kind of dedication in
Britain.[425] Galloway may have been the native home of Ninias, and
was certainly the head-quarters of his ministry.

F. 2.--The work of Ninias amongst the Picts was followed in the next
generation by the more abiding work of St. Patrick amongst the Scots
of Ireland. Nay, even the Continent was indebted to British piety;
though few British visitors to the Swiss Oberland remember that the
Christianity they see around them is due to the zeal of a British
Mission. Yet there seems no solid reason for doubting that so it is.
Somewhere about the time of St. Patrick, two British priests, Beatus
and Justus, entered the district by the Brunig Pass, and set up their
first church at Einigen, near Thun. There Justus abode as the settled
Missioner of the neighbourhood, while Beatus made his home in the
ivy-clad cave above the lake which still bears his name,[426] sailing
up and down with the Gospel message, and evangelizing the valleys
and uplands now so familiar to his fellow-countrymen--Grindelwald,
Lauterbrunnen, Mürren, Kandersteg.

F. 3.--And while the light of the Gospel was thus spreading on every
side from our land, Britain was also becoming all too famous as the
nurse of error. The British Pelagius,[427] who erred concerning
the doctrine of free-will, grew to be a heresiarch of the first
order;[428] and his follower Fastidius, or Faustus, the saintly Abbot
of Lerins in the Hyères, the friend of Sidonius Apollinaris,[429] was,
in his day, only less renowned. He asserted the materiality of the
soul. Both were able writers; and Pelagius was the first to adopt the
plan of promulgating his heresies not as his own, but as the tenets of
supposititious individuals of his acquaintance.

F. 4.--Pelagianism spread so widely in Britain that the Catholics
implored for aid from over-sea. St. Germanus of Auxerre, and St.
Lupus, Bishop of Troyes (whose sanctity had disarmed the ferocity even
of Attila), came[430] accordingly (in 429) and vindicated the faith in
a synod held at Verulam so successfully that the neighbouring shrine
of St. Alban was the scene of a special service of thanksgiving. In
a second Mission, fifteen years later, Germanus set the seal to his
work, stamping out throughout all the land both this new heresy and
such remains of heathenism as were still to be found in Southern
Britain. While thus engaged on the Border he found his work endangered
by a raiding host of Picts or Saxons, or both. The Saint, who had been
a military chieftain in his youth, promptly took the field at the head
of his flock, many of whom were but newly baptized. It was Easter Eve,
and he took advantage of the sacred ceremonies of that holy season,
which were then actually performed by night. From the New Fire, the
"Lumen Christi," was kindled a line of beacons along the Christian
lines, and when Germanus intoned the threefold Easter Alleluia,
the familiar strain was echoed from lip to lip throughout the host.
Stricken with panic at the sudden outburst of light and song, the
enemy, without a blow, broke and fled.[431]

F. 5.--This story, as told by Constantius, and confirmed by both
Nennius and Bede, incidentally furnishes us with something of a key
to the main difficulty in accepting the widely-spread Romano-British
Christianity to which the foregoing citations testify. What, it is
asked, has become of all the Romano-British churches? Why are no
traces of them found amongst the abundant Roman remains all over the
land? That they were the special objects of destruction at the Saxon
invasion we learn from Gildas. But this does not account for their
very foundations having disappeared; yet at Silchester[432] alone have
modern excavations unearthed any even approximately certain example of
them. Where are all the rest?

F. 6.--The question is partly answered when we read that the soldiers
of Germanus had erected in their camp a church of wattle, and that
such was the usual material of which, even as late as 446, British
churches were built (as at Glastonbury). Seldom indeed would such
leave any trace behind them; and thus the country churches of Roman
Britain would be sought in vain by excavators. In the towns, however,
stone or brick would assuredly be used, and to account for the paucity
of ecclesiastical ruins three answers may be suggested.

F. 7.--First, the number of continuously unoccupied Romano-British
cities is very small indeed. Except at Silchester, Anderida, and
Uriconium, almost every one has become an English town. But when this
took place early in the English settlement of the land, the ruins of
the Romano-British churches would still be clearly traceable at the
conversion of the English, and would be rebuilt (as St. Martin's at
Canterbury was in all probability rebuilt)[433] for the use of English
Christianity, the old material[434] being worked up into the new
edifices. It is probable that many of our churches thus stand on the
very spot where the Romano-British churches stood of old. But this
very fact would obliterate the remains of these churches.

F. 8.--Secondly, it is very possible that many of the heathen temples
may, after the edict of Theodosius (A.D. 392), have been turned into
churches (like the Pantheon at Rome), so that _their_ remains may mark
ecclesiastical sites. There are reasons for believing that in various
places, such as St. Paul's, London, St. Peter's, Cambridge, and St.
Mary's, Ribchester, Christian worship did actually thus succeed Pagan
on the same site.

F. 9.--Thirdly, as Lanciani points out, the earliest Christian
churches were simply the ordinary dwelling-houses of such wealthier
converts as were willing to permit meetings for worship beneath their
roof, which in time became formally consecrated to that purpose. Such
a dwelling-house usually consisted of an oblong central hall, with
a pillared colonnade, opening into a roofed cloister or peristyle on
either side, at one end into a smaller guest-room [_tablinum_], at the
other into the porch of entry. The whole was arranged thus:

    Small Guest Room. P P e e r r i Central Hall, i s with pillars
    s t on each side t y (often roofless). y l l e e Porch of

It will be readily seen that we have here a building on the lines of
an ordinary church. The small original congregation would meet, like
other guests, in the reception-room. As numbers increased, the hall
and adjoining cloisters would have to be used (the former being roofed
in); the reception-room being reserved for the most honoured members,
and ultimately becoming the chancel of a fully-developed church, with
nave and aisles complete.[435] It _may_ be, therefore, that some of
the Roman villas found in Britain were really churches.[436]

F. 10.--This, however, is a less probable explanation of the absence
of ecclesiastical remains; and the large majority of Romano-British
church sites are, as I believe, still in actual use amongst us for
their original purpose. And it may be considered as fairly proved,
that before Britain was cut off from the Empire the Romano-British
Church had a rite[437] and a vigorous corporate life of its own, which
the wave of heathen invasion could not wholly submerge. It lived on,
shattered, perhaps, and disorganized, but not utterly crushed, to
be strengthened in due time by a closer union with its parent stem,
through the Mission of Augustine, to feel the reflex glow of its own
missionary efforts in the fervour of Columba and his followers,[438]
and, finally, to form an integral part of that Ecclesia Anglicana
whose influence knit our country into one, and inspired the Great
Charter of our constitutional liberties.[439] Her faith and her
freedom are the abiding debt which Britain owes to her connection with


Aaron of Caerleon, 259
Addeomarus, 130
Adder-beads, 71
Adelfius, 259
Adminius, 126, 128, 130
Aetius, 245
Agricola, 156, 160, 161, 162, 163, 164, 165
Agriculture, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 191, 231
Agrippina, 140, 149, 150
Akeman Street, 166
Alaric, 237, 243
Alban, St., 227, 259
Albany, 247
Albinus, 200
Albion, 32
Alexander Severus, 71
Allectus, 220, 223, 224, 231
Alleluia Battle, 264
Alpine dogs, 191
Amber, 48, 49
Ambleteuse, 86, 95
Amboglanna, 174, 204
Aminus. _See_ Adminius
Amphitheatres, 185, 224
Ancalites, 55, 120
Ancyran Tablet, 128
Anderida, 56, 240, 250, 265
Anglesey, 154, 161
Antedrigus, 131, 146
Antonines, 213
Antoninus Pius, 171, 197, 214
Aquae Sulis, 183. _See_ Bath
Aquila, 257
Arianism, 230
Arms, 49, 178
Army of Britain, 159, 160, 199, 200, 218, 228, 230, 235, 242
Army of Church, 268
Arthur, 247
Arthur's Well, 205
Asclepiodotus, 224
Ash-pits, 177, 186
Asturians, 204, 205
Atrebates, 55, 56, 82, 87, 125, 127, 142
Attacotti, 46, 194, 233
Augusta, 180, 233
Augustine, 243
Augustus, 128, 129
Avebury, 30

Bards, 66
Barham Down, 110, 114
Barns, British, 40
Barrows, 29, 60
Basilicas, 185
Baskets, 43
Basques, 51
Bath, 60, 170, 174, 183
Battle Bridge, 157
Beads, 48, 128
Beatus, St., 262
Bee-keeping, 42
Beer, 42
Belgae, 52, 57, 61
Belisarius, 249
Bericus. _See_ Vericus
Bibroci, 55, 56, 120
Birdoswald, 174, 203, 204
Bishops, British, 230, 255, 259
Boadicea, 152, 157, 158, 253
Borcovicus, 205
Boulogne, 86, 220, 223, 233
Breeches, 47
Brigantes, 49, 57, 146, 148, 160, 197, 206
Brige, 175
Britain, "Upper" and "Lower," 195
Britannia coins, 197
Britannia I. and II., 59, 225
Britannicus, 136, 140, 199
British coins, 38, 125, 126, 127
   "    Lion, 126, 210 221
Britons, Origin of, 32
Brittany, 235
Bronze, 30, 33
Brownies, 29
Brutus, 151

Cadiz, 34
Cadwallon. _See_ Cassivellaunus
Caer Caradoc, 148
Caergwent, 184
Caerleon, 150, 166, 179, 182, 195, 239, 259
Caer Segent, 56
Caesar, Julius:
  Earlier career, 73-83
  First invasion, 83-101
  Second invasion, 102-123
Caesar (as title), 222
Caesar's horse, 107
Caledonians, 163, 194, 201, 202, 213, 232
Caligula, 126, 130
Calleva, 56, 172, etc. _See_ Silchester
Cambridge, 171, 175, 178, 266
Camelodune, 127, 135, 147, 152, 154, 176
Cangi, 146
Cannibalism, 46, 233
Canterbury, 265
Caracalla, 171, 201, 212-214
Caractacus (Caradoc, Caratac), 127, 134, 137, 147, 148, 149
Carausius, 180, 220, 221, 245
Carlisle, 175, 204
Cartismandua, 148, 150, 160
Cassi, 54, 55, 120
Cassiterides, 34
Cassivellaunus (Caswallon), 109, 113-122, 127
Cateuchlani (Cattivellauni), 55, 58, 59, 109, 121, 127
Cattle, British, 45
Celestine, Pope, 263
Celtic types, 50
Cerealis, 160
Cerne Abbas, 65
Chariots, British, 50, 92, 99, 115, 129, 134, 163
Charnwood, 190
Chedworth, 58, 267
Chester, 162, 167, 174, 179, 182, 195, 247, 250
"Chester" (suffix), 175, 183, 250
Chesters. _See_ Cilurnum
Chichester, 141
Chives, 205
Christianity, British, 225-230, 251-268
Churches, British, 185, 264-267
Cicero, 36, 75, 77, 104-106, 122, 151
Cilurnum, 204, 205, 211
Cirencester, 225. _See_ Corinium
Citizenship, Roman, 140, 141, 213, 214
Clans, British, 52, 55-59
Claudia Rufina, 141, 256, 257
Claudius, 131, 134-143, 147, 149, 150
Clement, St., 252
Climate, British, 40, 185
Cogidubnus, 141, 256
Cohorts, 86, 114, 239
Coins, British, 38, 54, 125-127
  "    Romano-British, 139, 177, 197, 221, 246
Colchester (Colonia), 167, 171, 175, 176, 222. _See_ Camelodune
Colonies, 147, 152-154, 175
Columba, 71, 72, 268
Comitatenses, 239
Commius, 54, 83, 87, 94, 101, 121, 124-127, 130
Commodus, 199, 200
Constans, 230
Constantine I., 222, 227-229
     "      III., 242
Constantius I., 180, 222-224, 227-229
Constantius II., 231, 260
Cony Castle, 30
Coracles, 37, 245
Corinium 179, 189-191. _See_ Cirencester
Corn-growing, 40, 191, 231
Coronation Oath, 260
Council of Ariminum, 230, 260
    "      Arles, 230, 259
    "      Cloveshoo, 267
    "      Constance, 255
    "      Nice, 230
Count of Britain, 240, 243, 247
  "      the Saxon Shore, 220, 240, 243
Counts of the Empire, 240
Coway Stakes, 119
Cromlechs, 29
Cymbeline (Cunobelin), 54, 126-128
Cymry, 247

Damnonii, 57, 58, 61, 80, 247
Deal, 89, 108
Decangi, 146
Decentius, 231
Decurions, 182
Dedication of churches, 261
Dene Holes, 41
"Dioceses," 222
Diocletian, 59, 71, 219, 221, 222, 224-227
Divitiacus, 82, 109
Divorce, 259
"Divus," 123, 227
Dobuni, 57, 132
Dogs, British, 190
Dol, 235
Dolmens, 29
Domestic animals, 45, 46
Domitian, 163
Domitilla, 257
Dorchester, 61
Dover, 87
Dragon standard, 244
"Druidesses," 71, 154, 155
Druidism, 62-72
Duke of the Britains, 239, 243, 247
Duke of the Britons, 245
Duns, 60
Durotriges, 57, 61

Eagles, Legionary, 90, 91, 228
Eboracum, 174
Eborius, 259
Elephants, 107, 119, 134
Eleutherius, 258
Emeriti, 214
English, 232, 245, 246
Epping Forest, 47, 190
Equinoctial hours, 39, 40
Erinus Hispanicus, 204
Ermine Street, 166-170
Exports, British, 128, 129

Fastidius, Faustus, 263
Flavians, 133
Fleam Dyke, 144, 145
Fleet, British, 182, 221
Forests, 47, 56-58, 189
Fosse Way, 166, 167, 169
Frampton, 267
Franks, 219, 224, 237
Frisians, 200, 220, 248
Fruit-trees, 186

Gael, 32, 50
Galerius, 222, 227, 228
Galgacus, 163
Galloway, 46, 194, 233, 248, 261
Gates of London, 179
Geese, 46
Gelt, R., 210
Genuini, 197
Germanus, 263-265
Gerontius (Geraint), 242
Geta, 201, 213
Gladiators, 136, 137, 224
Glass, 48, 129
Glastonbury, 27, 57, 254, 255
Glazed ware, 188
Gnossus, 37
Gog-Magog Hills, 219
Gold, 30, 39, 48
Goths, 249
Grindelwald, 262
Gulf Stream, 40

Hadrian, 181, 194-197
Hair-dye, 48, 129
Handicrafts, 187, 188
Hardway, 36
Hasta Pura, 138
Havre, 223
Helena, 222, 227
"Hengist and Horsa," 245
Heretics, 263
Honorius, 242, 243
Horseshoes, 177
Hounds, 190
Hugh, St., 185
Huntingdon, 171
Hypocausts, 189, 205

Iberians, 51
Iceni, 54, 57, 58, 59, 120, 130, 142-146, 152, 157, 170
Icknield Street, 144, 145, 167, 170, 186
Ictis, 35
Ierne, 32, 234, 236. _See_ Ireland
Immanuentius, 109
Imperial visits, 134, 194, 201, 223, 230
Ireland, 162, 232, 262, 268. _See_ Ierne
Iron, 33, 50
Itinerary, 171, 172, 173, 175

Jadite, 29
Jerome, St., 46, 191, 233, 260
Jerusalem, 160, 181, 260
Joseph of Arimathaea, 254
Julia Domna, 209, 210, 213
  "   Lex, 192, 243
Julian, 191, 225, 231, 232
Julianus, 200
Julius Caesar. _See_ Caesar
  "    Classicianus, 158
  "    Firmicus, 230
  "    of Caerleon, 259
Juridicus Britanniae, 181
Justinian, 181, 248
Justus, 262

Kalendar of Druids, 64
"Keels," Saxon, 221, 245
Kent, 55, 121, 127, 142, 247-249
Kilns, 187
King's Cross, 157
Koridwen, 155

Labarum, 188, 228, 229, 267
Labienus, 107, 122, 123
Lambeth, 168
Lead-mining, 39, 146, 188
Legates, 141, 197, 200, 232
Legion II., 133, 150, 157, 174, 182, 239
  "    VI., 174, 182, 239
  "    VII., 99
  "    IX., 133, 154, 157, 178, 181, 194
  "    X., 91, 99
  "    XIV., 133, 150, 156, 160
  "    XX., 133, 150, 157, 160, 174, 182, 234, 237, 240
Legionary feeling, 91, 157
Legions, Roman, 86, 90, 91, 231, 238, 239
Leicester, 183
Libelli, 226
Liber Landavensis, 259
Licinius, 228
Ligurians, 51
Lincoln, 171, 175, 185, 250, 259
Linus, 257
Lion, British, 126, 210, 221
Loddon, R., 134
Logris, 51
Lollius Urbicus, 197, 198
London, 60, 117, 118, 122, 154, 156, 157, 166, 168, 169, 171,
  179-183, 224, 233, 241, 250, 259
Lupicinus, 232
Lupus, 263
Lyminge, 265
Lyons, 200, 258

Magna, 208
Magnentius, 230, 231
Maiden Castle, 61
  "    Way, 169
Mandubratius, 109, 122, 127
Mansions, 189
Manures, 40
Marcus Aurelius, 215
Marseilles, 35, 38
Martial, 43, 141, 255-257
Martin, St., 261, 262
Martyrs, British, 227, 259
Mastiffs, 190
Mater Deum, 209, 210
Maxentius, 228
Maximian, 222, 225, 227, 228
Maximin, 228
Maximus, 235
Mead, 42
Meatae, 201, 202, 232
Mendips, 39, 188
Mile Castles, 195, 204
Milestones, 180
Millstones, 44
Missionaries, British, 261, 262
Mistletoe, 67, 68
Mithraism, 207, 208, 228
Mona, 154, 155, 161
Money-box, 184
Morgan, 263
Mutter-recht, 46

Narcissus, 131
Needwood, 58, 190
Nennius, 171-173, 244-247
Neolithic Age, 28-30
Nero, 151, 158, 159
Nervii, 54
Newcastle, 204
Ninias, 261, 262, 264
North Tyne R., 211
Notitia, 171, 173, 174, 237-242

Oberland, 262
Ocean, 33, 85, 97, 122, 131, 236, 238, 256
Ogre, 29
"Old England's Hole," 111
Optio, 211
Ordovices, 57, 147, 161
Ostorius, 142-149
Otho, 159, 160

Paganism suppressed, 230
Palaeolithic period, 26-28
Pansa, 198
Pantheon, Druidic, 62, 64
Parisii, 54, 58, 82
Parjetting, 187
Patrick, St., 71, 262
Paul, St., 251-257
Pax Romana, 165, 178, 187
Pearls, British, 128
Peel Crag, 203
Pelagius, 263
Perennis, 199
Pertinax, 200
Peter, St., 252, 253
Petronius, 158
Phoenicians, 33-37
Picts, 193, 207, 232-236, 245, 259, 261, 264
Pilgrims, British, 260
Pilgrims' Way, 36
Pillars, multiple, 185
Pilum, 158
Pirates, 219-221, 235, 245
Plautius, 131, 134, 137, 147, 256
Plough, British, 40
Pomponia, 256
Population, 59, 178
Portsmouth Harbour, 132, 240, 252
Port Way, 186
Posidonius, 36, 82
Posting, 189, 227
Postumus, 218
Pottery, 30, 187
Praetorium, 181
Prasutagus, 152
Precedents, British, 182
Prefectures, 221
Prince of Wales, 247
Priscilla, 257
Priscus, 159
Probus, 192, 218
Pro-consuls, 74, 77, 142, 198
Procurator of Britain, 152, 153, 158
Prosper, 263
Provinces, 59, 74, 77, 195, 198, 222, 225, 230, 240
Ptolemy, 171-175
Pudens, 141, 256, 257
Pytheas, 34-36, 38-40, 42, 45, 49, 51, 55

Querns, 44
Quiberon, Battle off, 81
Quintus Cicero, 104, 105, 106

Radagaisus, 237
Rampart of Agricola, 163, 194, 198, 201, 234
Rationalis Britanniarum, 241
Regni, 57, 142
Ribchester, 176, 266
Richborough, 88, 108, 121, 175, 223, 233, 235, 239
Rings, 186
Rite, British, 267
River-bed men, 26, 27
Rogation Days, 267
Roman citizenship, 140, 141, 213, 214
Roman roads, 117, 166-171
Royal roads, 167
Rycknield Street, 166, 170

Saexe, 219, 246
Sallustius Lucullus, 164
Samian pottery, 188
"Sarsen," 30, 31
Sarum, 175
Saturnalia, 132
Saxons, 193, 206, 219, 233, 234, 236, 238, 244, 245
  _See_ English
Saxon Shore, 219
Scotch dogs, 191
Scots, 232-238, 246, 262
Scythed chariots, 100
Seers, 66
Segontium, 127, 172, 228
Selwood, 38, 190
Seneca, 140, 152
Settle, 251
Severus, 200-203, 209-213, 231
Sherwood, 58, 190
Shields, British, 49, 50
  "  Roman, 178
Ships, British, 37, 80
  "  Venetian, 79, 80
  "  Caesar's, 81, 103
  "  Scotch, 232
  "  Saxon, 245
Silchester, 56, 162, 175,179, 183-188, 264, 265
Silurians, 51, 57, 146-150, 161
Silver, 39, 186
Simon Magus, 71
  "  Zelotes, 253
"Snake's Egg," 70, 71
South Foreland, 89
Spain, 77, 103, 155, 200, 222, 242
Squads, 239
Squared word, 189
Stamford, Battle of, 232, 246
Staters, 38
"Stations," 202, 203
Stilicho, 235-237, 242
Stoke-by-Nayland, 265
Stonehenge, 30, 31
"Streets," 169
Suetonius Paulinus, 154-158, 161
Sul, 183
Sussex, 50, 128, 142
Sylla, 75
Syracuse, 219

Tabulae Missionis, 214
Tartan, 47
Tasciovan, 54, 127, 128, 130, 156
Tattooing, 48
Taxation, 192
Thames, 56, 117-119, 122, 134
Thanet, 36, 108, 245
Theatres, 153, 184
Theodosius the Elder, 233, 234
    "       "  Great, 230, 235, 242, 268
Thimbles, Roman, 177
Tides, 88, 93, 96, 108, 124, 233
Tin, 33-38. 128
Tincommius, 54, 125, 128
Titus, 133, 137
Togodumnus, 134, 147
Tonsure, Druidic, 72
Treasury, 180, 241
Trebatius, 104
Trees, 47
Tribal boundaries, 56-58
Tribune, 114, 138, 209, 239
Trident, 49
Trinobantes, 55, 57, 59, 109, 122, 127
Triumphs, 135, 149
Tufa, 244, 247
Turf wall, 197, 198, 206
Tyrants, 53, 54, 247

"Ugrians," 29-31, 62
Ulpius Marcellus, 199, 211
Ulysses, 64, 248
Uriconium, 150, 179, 184
Ushant, 155
Uther, 244

Valens, 234
Valentia, 225, 234, 237, 240
Valentinian I., 230, 233
  "  II., 235
  "  III., 177, 246
Vallum, 205-207, 233
Vandals, 219, 237
Varus, 130
Veneti, 79-81
Verica, 125
Vericus, 130, 142, 143, 152
Verulam, 120, 127, 156, 157, 168, 227, 263
Vespasian, 133, 137, 159
Vexillatio, 210
Via Devana, 166, 167
Vicar of Britain, 240, 243
Victorinus, 218
Villages, 27, 44, 45, 129
Villas, 188, 189, 267
Vine-growing, 192
Visi-goths, 243
Volisius, 54
Vortigern, 245

Wagons, 36
Wall (of Hadrian), 174, 195, 196, 202-212
Wall (of London, etc.), 179
Water-supply, 60, 162, 211
Watling Street, 118, 166-170
Wattle churches, 254, 255, 265
Weald, 57, 189
Wells, 186
West Saxons, 248
Whitherne, 261, 262
Wight, I. of, 36, 133, 189, 224
Winchester, 175
Winter thorn, 254


[Footnote 1: Published by the Record Office, 1848.]

[Footnote 2: Published by the Royal Academy of Berlin. Vol. VII.
contains the Romano-British Inscriptions.]

[Footnote 3: His later books only survive in the epitome of
Xiphilinus, a Byzantine writer of the 13th century.]

[Footnote 4: See p. 171.]

[Footnote 5: See p. 256.]

[Footnote 6: In the British (?) village near Glastonbury the bases of
shed antlers are found hafted for mallets.]

[Footnote 7: This name is simply given for archaeological convenience,
to indicate that these aborigines were non-Aryan, and perhaps of
Turanian affinity.]

[Footnote 8: Skeat, however, traces "ogre" (the Spanish "ogro") to the
Latin _Orcus_.]

[Footnote 9: The latest excavations (1902) prove Stonehenge to be
a Neolithic erection. No metal was found, but quantities of flint
implements, broken in the arduous task of dressing the great Sarsen
monoliths. The process seems to have been that still used for granite,
viz. to cut parallel channels on the rough surface, and then break and
rub down the ridges between. This was done by the use of conical lumps
of Sarsen stone, weighing from 20 to 60 lbs., several of which were
discovered bearing traces of usage, both in pounding and rubbing. The
monoliths examined were found to be thus tooled accurately down to the
very bottom, 8 or 9 feet below ground. At Avebury the stones are not

[Footnote 10: _Sarsen_ is the same word as _Saracen_, which in
mediaeval English simply means _foreign_ (though originally derived
from the Arabic _sharq_ = Eastern). Whence the stones came is still
disputed. They _may_ have been boulders deposited in the district by
the ice-drift of the Glacial Epoch.]

[Footnote 11: Professor Rhys assigns 600 B.C. as the approximate date
of the first Gadhelic arrivals, and 200 B.C. as that of the first

[Footnote 12: Whether or no this word is (as some authorities hold)
derived from the Welsh _Prutinach_ (=Picts) rather than from the
Brythons, it must have reached Aristotle through Brythonic channels,
for the Gadhelic form is _Cruitanach_.]

[Footnote 13: A certain amount of British folk-lore was brought
back to Greece, according to Plutarch ('De defect. orac.' 2), by
the geographer Demetrias of Tarsus about this time. He refers to the
cavern of sleeping heroes, so familiar in our mediaeval legends.]

[Footnote 14: The word is said to be derived from the root _kâsh_,
"shine." Some authorities, however, maintain that it came into
Sanscrit from the Greek.]

[Footnote 15: 'Hist.' III. 112.]

[Footnote 16: See p. 48.]

[Footnote 17: For a full notice of Pytheas see Elton, 'Origins of
English History,' pp. 13-75. See also Tozer's 'Ancient Geography,'
chap. viii.]

[Footnote 18: Posidonius of Rhodes, the tutor of Cicero, visited
Britain about 100 B.C., and wrote a History of his travels in fifty
volumes, only known to us by extracts in Strabo (iii. 217, iv. 287,
vii. 293), Diodorus Siculus (v. 28, 30), Athenaeus, and others. See
Bake's 'Posidonius' (Leyden, 1810).]

[Footnote 19: The ingots of bronze found in the recent [1900]
excavations at Gnossus, in Crete, which date approximately from
2000 B.C., are of this shape. Presumably the Britons learnt it from
Phoenician sources.]

[Footnote 20: _Saxon_ coracles are spoken of even in the 5th century
A.D. See p. 245.]

[Footnote 21: 'Coins of the Ancient Britons,' p. 24.]

[Footnote 22: This familiar feature of our climate is often touched on
by classical authors. Minucius Felix (A.D. 210) is observant enough
to connect it with our warm seas, "its compensation," due to the Gulf

[Footnote 23: 'Nat. Hist.' xviii. 18.]

[Footnote 24: _Ibid_. xvii. 4.]

[Footnote 25: Solinus (A.D. 80) adds that bees, like snakes, were
unknown in Ireland, and states that bees will even desert a hive if
Irish earth be brought near it!]

[Footnote 26: Matthew Martin, 'Western Isles,' published 1673. Quoted
by Elton ('Origins of English Hist.,' p. 16), who gives Martin's date
as 1703.]

[Footnote 27: Strabo, iv. 277. The word _basket_ is itself of Celtic
origin, and passed into Latin as it has passed into English.
Martial ('Epig.' xiv. 299) says: "Barbara de pictis veni _bascauda_
Britannis." Strabo wrote shortly before, Martial shortly after, the
Roman Conquest of Britain.]

[Footnote 28: One of these primitive mortars, a rudely-hollowed block
of oolite, with a flint pestle weighing about 6 lbs., was found near
Cambridge in 1885.]

[Footnote 29: Diod. Siculus, 'Hist.' v. 21.]

[Footnote 30: 'British Barrows,' p. 750.]

[Footnote 31: 'Geog.' IV.]

[Footnote 32: 'Legend of Montrose,' ch. xxii.]

[Footnote 33: Diod. Sic. v. 30: "Saga crebris tessellis florum instar
distincta." This _sagum_ was obviously a tartan plaid such as are now
in use. The kilt, however, was not worn. It is indeed a comparatively
quite modern adaptation of the belted plaid. Ancient Britons wore
trousers, drawn tight above the ankles, after the fashion still
current amongst agricultural labourers. They were already called
"breeches." Martial (Ep. x. 22) satirizes a life "as loose as the old
breeches of a British pauper."]

[Footnote 34: Pliny, 'Nat. Hist.' viii. 48.]

[Footnote 35: _Id_. xxviii. 2. Fashions about hair seem to have
changed as rapidly amongst Britons (throughout the whole period of
this work) as in later times. The hair was sometimes worn short,
sometimes long, sometimes strained back from the forehead; sometimes
moustaches were in vogue, sometimes a clean shave, more rarely a full
beard; but whiskers were quite unknown.]

[Footnote 36: Tozer ('Ancient Geog.' p. 164) states that amber is also
exported from the islands fringing the west coast of Schleswig, and
considers that these rather than the Baltic shores were the "Amber
Islands" of Pytheas.]

[Footnote 37: 'Nat. Hist.' xxxvii. 1.]

[Footnote 38: See p. 128.]

[Footnote 39: A lump weighing nearly 12 lbs. was dredged up off
Lowestoft in 1902.]

[Footnote 40: A.D. 50.]

[Footnote 41: Seneca speaks of the blue shields of the Yorkshire

[Footnote 42: See Elton, 'Origins of English History,' p. 116.]

[Footnote 43: Thurnam, 'British Barrows' (Archaeol. xliii. 474).]

[Footnote 44: Propertius, iv. 3, 7.]

[Footnote 45: 'Celtic Britain,' p. 40.]

[Footnote 46: This seems the least difficult explanation of this
strange name. An alternative theory is that it = _Cenomanni_ (a Gallic
tribe-name also found in Lombardy). But with this name (which must
have been well known to Caesar) we never again meet in Britain. And it
is hard to believe that he would not mention a clan so important and
so near the sphere of his campaign as the Iceni.]

[Footnote 47: See p. 109.]

[Footnote 48: These tribes are described by Vitruvius, at the
Christian era, as of huge stature, fair, and red-haired. Skeletons of
this race, over six feet in height, have been discovered in Yorkshire
buried in "monoxylic" coffins; i.e. each formed of the hollowed trunk
of an oak tree. See Elton's 'Origins,' p. 168.]

[Footnote 49: This correspondence, however, is wholly an antiquarian
guess, and rests on no evidence. It is first found in the forged
chronicle of "Richard of Cirencester." The _names_ are genuine, being
found in the 'Notitia,' though dating only from the time of Diocletian
(A.D. 296). But, on our theory, the same administrative divisions must
have existed all along. See p. 225.]

[Footnote 50: General Pitt Rivers, however, in his 'Excavations in
Cranborne Chase' (vol. ii. p. 237), proves that the ancient water
level in the chalk was fifty feet higher than at present, presumably
owing to the greater forest area. "Dew ponds" may also have existed in
these camps. But these can scarcely have provided any large supply of

[Footnote 51: The word is commonly supposed to represent a Celtic form
_Mai-dun_. But this is not unquestionable.]

[Footnote 52: 'De Bello Gall.' vi. 13.]

[Footnote 53: 'De Bell. Gall.' vi. 14.]

[Footnote 54: Jerome ('Quaest. in Gen.' ii.) says that Varro, Phlegon,
and all learned authors testify to the spread of Greek [at the
Christian era] "from Taurus to Britain." And Solinus (A.D. 80) tells
of a Greek inscription in Caledonia, "ara Graecis literis
scripta"--as a proof that Ulysses (!) had wandered thither (Solinus,
'Polyhistoria,' c. 22). See p. 248.]

[Footnote 55: 'De Bell, Gall.' vi. 16.]

[Footnote 56: 'Hist.' v. 31.]

[Footnote 57: 'Celtic Britain,' p. 69.]

[Footnote 58: 'Nat. Hist.' xvi. 95.]

[Footnote 59: So Caesar, 'De Bell. Gall.' vi. 17.]

[Footnote 60: Pliny, 'Nat. Hist.' xxiv. 62. Linnaeus has taken
_selago_ as his name for club-moss, but Pliny here compares the herb
to _savin_, which grows to the height of several feet. _Samolum_ is
water-pimpernel in the Linnaean classification. Others identify it
with the _pasch-flower_, which, however, is far from being a marsh

[Footnote 61: Suetonius (A.D. 110), 'De xii. Caes.' v. 25.]

[Footnote 62: Pliny, 'Nat. Hist.' xxx. 3.]

[Footnote 63: Tacitus, 'Annals,' xiv. 30. See p. 154.]

[Footnote 64: Pliny, 'Nat. Hist.' xxix. 12.]

[Footnote 65: See Brand, 'Popular Antiquities,' under _Ovum Anguinum_.
He adds that _Glune_ is the Irish for glass.]

[Footnote 66: Lampridius, in his life of Alexander Severus, tells us
of a "Druid" sorceress who warned the Emperor of his approaching doom.
Another such "Druidess" is said to have foretold Diocletian's rise.
See Coulanges, '_Comme le Druidisme a disparu_,' in the _Revue
Celtique_, iv. 37.]

[Footnote 67: See Professor Rhys, 'Celtic Britain,' p. 70. The
Professor's view that the "schismatical" tonsure of the Celtic clergy,
which caused such a stir during the evangelization of England, was a
Druidical survival, does not, however, seem probable in face of the
very pronounced antagonism between those clergy and the Druids. That
tonsure was indeed ascribed by its Roman denouncers to Simon Magus
[see above], but this is scarcely a sufficient foundation for the

[Footnote 68: They may very possibly have been connected with the
Veneti of Venice at the other extremity of "the Gauls."]

[Footnote 69: See p. 37.]

[Footnote 70: Caesar, 'Bell. Gall.' iii. 9, 13.]

[Footnote 71: Elton, 'Origins of English Hist.,' p. 237. Though less
massive, these vessels are built much as the Venetian. But it is just
as probable they may really be "picts." See p. 232.]

[Footnote 72: This opening of Britain to continental influences may
perhaps account for Posidonius having been able to make so thorough a
survey of the islands. See p. 36.]

[Footnote 73: Elton ('Origins of English Hist.') conjectures that
these tribes did not migrate to Britain till after Caesar's day. But
there is no evidence for this, and my view seems better to explain the

[Footnote 74: Solinus (A.D. 80) says of Britain, "_alterius orbis
nomen mereretur_." This passage is probably the origin of the Pope's
well-known reference to St. Anselm, when Archbishop of Canterbury, as
"_quasi alterius orbis antistes_."]

[Footnote 75: A Roman legion at this date comprised ten "cohorts,"
_i.e._ some six thousand heavy-armed infantry, besides a small
light-armed contingent, and an attached squadron of three hundred
cavalry. Each of Caesar's transports must thus have carried from one
hundred and fifty to two hundred men, and at this rate the eighteen
cavalry vessels (reckoning a horse as equivalent to five men, the
usual proportion for purposes of military transport) would suffice for
his two squadrons.]

[Footnote 76: An ancient ship could not sail within eight points of
the wind (see Smith, 'Voyage of St. Paul'). Thus a S.W. breeze, while
permitting Caesar to leave Boulogne, would effectually prevent these
vessels from working out of Ambleteuse.]

[Footnote 77: Hence the name Dubris = "the rivers."]

[Footnote 78: The claims of Richborough [Ritupis] to be Caesar's
actual landing-place have been advocated by Archdeacon Baddeley, Mr.
G. Bowker, and others. But it is almost impossible to make this place
square with Caesar's narrative.]

[Footnote 79: This was four days before the full moon, so that the
tide would be high at Dover about 6 p.m.]

[Footnote 80: The "lofty promontory" rounded is specially noticed by
Dio Cassius.]

[Footnote 81: The principle of the balista that of the sling, of the
catapult that of the bow. Ammianus Marcellinus (xv. 12) speaks of "the
snowy arms" of the Celtic women dealing blows "like the stroke of a

[Footnote 82: Valerius Maximus (A.D. 30) has recorded one such act of
daring on the part of a soldier named Scaeva, who with four comrades
held an isolated rock against all comers till he alone was left, when
he plunged into the sea and swam off, with the loss of his shield. In
spite of this disgrace Caesar that evening promoted him on the field.
The story has a suspicious number of variants, but off Deal there
_is_ such a patch of rocks, locally called the Malms; so that it may
possibly be true ('Memorabilia,' III. 2, 23).]

[Footnote 83: Valerius Maximus (A.D. 30) states that the Romans landed
on a _falling_ tide, which cannot be reconciled with Caesar's own
narrative (see p. 88). The idea may have originated in the fact that
it was probably the approaching turn of the tide which forced him to
land at Deal. He could not have reached Richborough before the ebb

[Footnote 84: Every soldier was four feet from his nearest neighbour
to give scope for effective sword-play. No other troops in history
have ever had the morale thus to fight at close quarters.]

[Footnote 85: See Plutarch, 'De placitis philosophorum.']

[Footnote 86: Each chariot may have carried six or seven men, like
those of the Indian King Porus. See Dodge, 'Alexander,' p. 554.]

[Footnote 87: Pomponius Mela ('De Situ Orbis,' I) tells us that by his
date (50 A.D.) it had come in: "Covinos vocant, quorum falcatis axîbus

[Footnote 88: It is thus represented by Giraldus Cambrensis, who gives
us the story of Caesar's campaigns from the British point of view, as
it survived (of course with gross exaggerations) in the Cymric legends
of his day.]

[Footnote 89: Lucan, the last champion of anti-Caesarism, sung, two
generations after its overthrow, the praises and the dirge of the

[Footnote 90: See my 'Alfred in the Chroniclers,' p. 44.]

[Footnote 91:'Ad Treb.' Ep. VI.]

[Footnote 92: 'Ad Treb.' Ep. VII.]

[Footnote 93: Ep. 10.]

[Footnote 94: Ep. 16.]

[Footnote 95: Ep. 17.]

[Footnote 96: IV. 15.]

[Footnote 97: III. 1.]

[Footnote 98: II. 16.]

[Footnote 99: II. 15.]

[Footnote 100: III. 10.]

[Footnote 101: Wace ('Roman de Ron,' 11,567) gives 696 as the exact

[Footnote 102: 'Strategemata,' viii. 23.]

[Footnote 103: This was probably not Deal, which had not proved a
satisfactory station, but Richborough, where the Wantsum, then a broad
arm of the sea between Kent and Thanet, provided an excellent harbour
for a large fleet. It was, moreover, the regular emporium of the tin
trade (see p. 36), and a British trackway thus led to it.]

[Footnote 104: Otherwise _Cadwallon_, which, according to Professor
Rhys, signifies War King, and may possibly have been a title rather
than a personal name. But it remained in use as the latter for many
centuries of British history.]

[Footnote 105: Vine, 'Caesar in Kent,' p. 171. The spot is "in Bourne
Park, not far from the road leading up to Bridge Hill."]

[Footnote 106: See p. 244.]

[Footnote 107: See II. G. 8. The tradition of this sentiment long
survived. Hegesippus (A.D. 150) says: "Britanni ... quidesse servitus
ignorabant; soli sibi nati, semper sibi liberi" ('De Bello Judiaco,'
II. 9).]

[Footnote 108: Polyaenus (A.D. 180) in his 'Strategemata' (viii. 23)
ascribes their panic to Caesar's elephant. See p. 107.]

[Footnote 109: At Ilerda. See Dodge, 'Caesar,' xxviii.]

[Footnote 110: Frontinus (A.D. 90), 'Strategemata II.' xiii. II.]

[Footnote 111: Coins of all three bear the words COMMI. F. (_Commii
Filius_), but Verica alone calls himself REX. Those of Eppillus were
struck at Calleva (Silchester?).]

[Footnote 112: See p. 54.]

[Footnote 113: This is the spelling adopted by Suetonius.]

[Footnote 114: The lion was already a specially British emblem.
Ptolemy ('de Judiciis II.' 3) ascribes the special courage of Britons
to the fact that they are astrologically influenced by Leo and Mars.
It is interesting to remember that our success in the Crimean War
was prognosticated from Mars being in Leo at its commencement (March
1854). Tennyson, in 'Maud,' has referred to this--"And pointed to
Mars, As he hung like a ruddy shield on the Lion's breast."]

[Footnote 115: See p. 38.]

[Footnote 116: The site of this town is quite unknown. Caesar mentions
the Segontiaci amongst the clans of S.E. Britain.]

[Footnote 117: In S.E. Essex, near Colchester. See p. 176.]

[Footnote 118: See pp. 109, 122.]

[Footnote 119: Aelian (A.D. 220), 'De Nat. Animal.' xv. 8.]

[Footnote 120: [Greek: Elephantina psalia, kai periauchenia, kai
lingouria kai huala skeuê, kai rhôpos toioutos]. Strabo is commonly
supposed to mean that these were the _imports_ from Gaul. But his
words are quite ambiguous, and such of the articles he mentions as are
found in Britain are clearly of native manufacture. British graves
are fertile (see p. 48) in the "amber and glass ornaments" (the former
being small roughly-shaped fragments pierced for threading, the latter
coarse blue or green beads), and produce occasional armlets of narwhal
ivory. Glass beads have been found (1898) in the British village near
Glastonbury, and elsewhere.]

[Footnote 121: Strabo, v. 278.]

[Footnote 122: Propertius, II. 1. 73: Esseda caelatis siste Britanna

[Footnote 123: _Ibid_. II. 18. 23. See p. 47.]

[Footnote 124: Virgil, 'Georg.' III. 24.]

[Footnote 125: Virgil, 'Eccl.' I. 65; Horace, 'Od.' I. 21. 13, 35. 30,
III. 5. 3; Tibullus, IV. 1. 147; Propertius, IV. 3. 7.]

[Footnote 126: Suetonius, 'De XII. Caes.' IV. 19.]

[Footnote 127: The lofty spur of the Chiltern Hills which overhangs
the church of Ellsborough is traditionally the site of his tomb.]

[Footnote 128: This whole episode is from 'Dio Cassius' (lib. xxxix.
Section 50).]

[Footnote 129: He places Cirencester in their territory, while both
Bath and Winchester belonged to the Belgae. To secure Winchester,
where they would be on the line of the tin-trade road (see p.
36), would be the first object of the Romans if they did land at
Portsmouth. Their further steps would depend upon the disposition of
the British armies advancing to meet them,--the final objective of the
campaign being Camelodune, the capital of the sons of Cymbeline.]

[Footnote 130: This is stated by both Geoffrey of Monmouth and Matthew
of Westminster.]

[Footnote 131: For three centuries this legion was quartered at
Caerleon-upon-Usk, and the Twentieth at Chester. See Mommsen, 'Roman
Provinces,' p. 174.]

[Footnote 132: This was the honorary title of several legions; as
there are several "Royal" regiments.]

[Footnote 133: Tac, 'Hist.' III. 44.]

[Footnote 134: The Flavian family was of very humble origin.]

[Footnote 135: Bede, from Suetonius, tells us that Vespasian with his
legion fought in Britain thirty-two battles and took twenty towns,
besides subduing the Isle of Wight ('Sex. Aet.' A.D. 80).]

[Footnote 136: If the Romans were advancing eastward from the Dobunian
territory it may have been the Loddon. Mommsen cuts the knot in true
German fashion by refusing to identify the Dobuni of Ptolemy with
those of Dion, and placing the latter in Kent on his own sole
authority. ('Roman Provinces,' p. 175.)]

[Footnote 137: [Greek: dusdiexoda.]]

[Footnote 138: See p. 139.]

[Footnote 139: 'Orosius,' VII. 5.]

[Footnote 140: A victorious Roman general was commonly thus hailed by
his troops after any signal victory. But by custom this could only be
done once in the same campaign.]

[Footnote 141: Suet. v. 21.]

[Footnote 142: Dio Cassius, lx. 23. The boy, who was the child of
Messalina, had previously been named _Germanicus_.]

[Footnote 143: Suet. v. 28.]

[Footnote 144: Suet. v. 21.]

[Footnote 145: Tac., 'Ann.' xii. 56.]

[Footnote 146: Dio Cassius, lx. 30.]

[Footnote 147: Suet. v. 24.]

[Footnote 148: Dio Cassius, lx. 30.]

[Footnote 149: Eutropius, vii. 13.]

[Footnote 150: Muratori, Thes. mcii. 6.]

[Footnote 151: 'De XII. Caesaribus,' v. 28.]

[Footnote 152: Dio Cassius, lx. 23.]

[Footnote 153: See Haverfield in 'Authority and Archaeology,' p. 319]

[Footnote 154: 'Laus Claudii' (Burmann, 'Anthol.' ii. 8).]

[Footnote 155: See p. 152.]

[Footnote 156: The inscription runs thus:

    IN. BRIT. _Colle_ GIVM. FABRO. ET. QVI. IN. E. . . . . .

(The italics are almost certain restoration of illegible letters.)]

[Footnote 157: See p. 256.]

[Footnote 158: Claudia, the British Princess mentioned by Martial
as making a distinguished Roman marriage, may very probably be his

[Footnote 159: See p. 130.]

[Footnote 160: Thus in St. Luke ii. we find Cyrenius _Pro-praetor_
([Greek: hêgemôn]) of Syria, but in Acts xviii. Gallio _Pro-consul_
([Greek: hanthupatos]) of Achaia.]

[Footnote 161: See p. 131.]

[Footnote 162: See p. 170.]

[Footnote 163: His reputation for strength, skill, and daring cost him
his life a few years later, under Nero (Tac, 'Ann.' xvi. 15).]

[Footnote 164: Pigs of lead have been found in Denbighshire stamped
CANGI or DECANGI. Mr. Elton, however, locates the tribe in Somerset.
Coins testify to Antedrigus, the Icenian, being somehow connected with
this tribe.]

[Footnote 165: A Roman "Colony" was a town peopled by citizens of
Rome (old soldiers being preferred) sent out in the first instance to
dominate the subject population amid whom they were settled. Such was

[Footnote 166: Tacitus, 'Annals,' xii. 38.]

[Footnote 167: The distinction of an actual triumph was reserved for
Emperors alone.]

[Footnote 168: Tacitus, 'Annals,' xii. 39.]

[Footnote 169: See p. 239. Uriconium alone has as yet furnished
inscriptions of the famous Fourteenth Legion, _"Victores Britannici."_
(See p. 160.)]

[Footnote 170: 'Ep. ad Atticum,' vi. 1.]

[Footnote 171: See Dio Cassius, xii. 2.]

[Footnote 172: The Procurator of a Province was the Imperial Finance
Administrator. (See Haverfield, 'Authority and Archaeology,' p. 310.)]

[Footnote 173: An inscription calls the place _Colonia Victricensis_.]

[Footnote 174: Tacitus, 'Ann.' xiv. 32.]

[Footnote 175: Demeter and Kore. M. Martin ('Hist. France,' i. 63)
thinks there is here a confusion between the Greek Kore (Proserpine)
and Koridwen, the White Fairy, the Celtic Goddess of the Moon and also
(as amongst the Greeks) of maidenhood. But this is not proven.]

[Footnote 176: The former is Strabo's variant of the name (which may
possibly be connected with [Greek: _semnos_]), the latter that of
Dionysius Periegetes ('De Orbe,' 57). In Caesar we find a third form
_Namnitae_, which Professor Rhys connects with the modern Nantes.]

[Footnote 177: See p. 127.]

[Footnote 178: As Agricola, his father-in-law, was actually with
Suetonius, Tacitus had exceptional opportunities for knowing the

[Footnote 179: Suetonius probably retreated southward when he
left London, and reoccupied its ruins when the Britons, instead of
following him, turned northwards to Verulam.]

[Footnote 180: The Roman _pilum_ was a casting spear with a heavy
steel head, nine inches long.]

[Footnote 181: Tac., 'Agricola,' c. 12.]

[Footnote 182: That the well-known coins commemorating these victories
and bearing the legend IVDAEA CAPTA are not infrequently found in
Britain, indicates the special connection between Vespasian and our
island. The great argument used by Titus and Agrippa to convince the
Jews that even the walls of Jerusalem would fail to resist the onset
of Romans was that no earthly rampart could compare with the ocean
wall of Britain (Josephus, D.B.J., II. 16, vi, 6).]

[Footnote 183: The spread of Latin oratory and literature in Britain
is spoken of at this date by Juvenal (Sat. xv. 112), and Martial
(Epig. xi. 3), who mentions that his own works were current here:
"Dicitur et nostros cantare Britannia versus."]

[Footnote 184: Mr. Haverfield suggests that Silchester may also be an
Agricolan city (see p. 184).]

[Footnote 185: Juvenal mentions these designs (II. 159):

  "--Arma quidem ultra
  Litora Juvernae promovimus, et modo captas
  Orcadas, et minima contentos nocte Britannos"
  (i.e. those furthest north).]

[Footnote 186: According to Dio Cassius this voyage of discovery was
first made by some deserters ('Hist. Rom.' lxix. 20).]

[Footnote 187: The little that is known of this rampart will be found
in the next chapter (see p. 198).]

[Footnote 188: Sallustius Lucullus, who succeeded Agricola as
Pro-praetor, was slain by Domitian only for the invention of an
improved lance, known by his name (as rifles now are called Mausers,

[Footnote 189: See p. 117.]

[Footnote 190: All highways were made Royal Roads before the end
of the 12th century, so that the course of the original four became
matter of purely antiquarian interest.]

[Footnote 191: Where it struck that sea is disputed, but Henry of
Huntingdon's assertion that it ran straight from London to Chester
seems the most probable.]

[Footnote 192: The lines of these roads, if produced, strike the
Thames not at London Bridge, but at the old "Horse Ferry" to Lambeth.
This _may_ point to an alternative (perhaps the very earliest) route.]

[Footnote 193: Guest ('Origines Celticae') derives "Ermine" from A.S.
_eorm_=fen, and "Watling" from the Welsh Gwyddel=Goidhel=Irish. The
Ermine Street, however, nowhere touches the fenland; nor did any
Gaelic population, so far as is known, abut upon the Watling Street,
at any rate after the English Conquest. Verulam was sometimes called
Watling-chester, probably as the first town on the road.]

[Footnote 194: The distinction between "Street" and "Way" must not,
however, be pressed, as is done by some writers. The Fosse Way is
never called a Street, though its name [_fossa_] shows it to have been
constructed as such; and the Icknield Way is frequently so called,
though it was certainly a mere track--often a series of parallel
tracks (_e.g._ at Kemble-in-the-Street in Oxfordshire)--as it mostly
remains to this day.]

[Footnote 195: This may still be seen in places; _e.g._ on the
"Hardway" in Somerset and the "Maiden Way" in Cumberland. See
Codrington, 'Roman Roads in Britain.']

[Footnote 196: Camden, however, speaks of a Saxon charter so
designating it near Stilton ('Britannia,' II. 249).]

[Footnote 197: The whole evidence on this confused subject is well set
out by Mr. Codrington ('Roman Roads in Britain').]

[Footnote 198: It is, however, possible that the latter is named from
Ake-manchester, which is found as A.S. for Bath, to which it must have
formed the chief route from the N. East.]

[Footnote 199: See p. 144. Bradley, however, controverts this,
pointing out that the pre-Norman authorities for the name only refer
to Berkshire.]

[Footnote 200: Thus Iter V. takes the traveller from London to Lincoln
_viâ_ Colchester, Cambridge, and Huntingdon, though the Ermine Street
runs direct between the two. The 'Itinerary' is a Roadbook of the
Empire, giving the stages on each route set forth, assigned by
commentators to widely differing dates, from the 2nd century to the
5th. In my own view Caracalla is probably the Antoninus from whom it
is called. But after Antoninus Pius (138 A.D.) the name was borne (or
assumed) by almost every Emperor for a century and more.]

[Footnote 201: See p. 237.]

[Footnote 202: Ptolemy also marks, in his map of Britain, some fifty
capes, rivers, etc., and the Ravenna list names over forty.]

[Footnote 203: The longitude is reckoned from the "Fortunate Isles,"
the most western land known to Ptolemy, now the Canary Islands.
Ferro, the westernmost of these, is still sometimes found as the Prime
Meridian in German maps.]

[Footnote 204: Thus the north supplies not only inscriptions relating
to its own legion (the Sixth), but no fewer than 32 of the Second, and
22 of the Twentieth; while at London and Bath indications of all three
are found.]

[Footnote 205: The Latin word _castra_, originally meaning "camp,"
came (in Britain) to signify a fortified town, and was adopted into
the various dialects of English as _caster, Chester_, or _cester_;
the first being the distinctively N. Eastern, the last the S. Western

[Footnote 206: Amongst these, however, must be named the high
authority of Professor Skeat. See 'Cambs. Place-Names.']

[Footnote 207: Pearson's 'Historical Maps of England' gives a complete
list of these.]

[Footnote 208: This industry flourished throughout the last half of
the 19th century. The "coprolites" were phosphatic nodules found in
the greensand and dug for use as manure.]

[Footnote 209: These are of bronze, with closed ends, pitted for the
needle as now, but of size for wearing upon the _thumb_.]

[Footnote 210: There seems no valid reason for doubting that the
horseshoes found associated with Roman pottery, etc., in the ashpits
of the Cam valley, Dorchester, etc., are actually of Romano-British
date. Gesner maintains that our method of shoeing horses was
introduced by Vegetius under Valentinian II. The earlier shoes seem
to have been rather such slippers as are now used by horses drawing
mowing-machines on college lawns. They were sometimes of rope: _Solea
sparta pes bovis induitur_ (Columella), sometimes of iron: _Et supinam
animam gravido derelinquere caeno Ferream ut solam tenaci in voragine
mula_ (Catullus, xvii. 25). Even gold was used: _Poppaea jumentis suis
soleas ex auro induebat_ (Suet., 'Nero,' xxx.). The Romano-British
horseshoes are thin broad bands of iron, fastened on by three nails,
and without heels. See also Beckmann's 'History of Inventions' (ed.

[Footnote 211: This is true of the whole of Britain, even along the
Wall, as a glance at the cases in the British Museum will show. There
may be seen the most interesting relic of this class yet discovered,
a bronze shield-boss, dredged out of the Tyne in 1893 [see 'Lapid.
Sept.' p. 58], bearing the name of the owner, Junius Dubitatus, and
his Centurion, Julius Magnus, of the Ninth Legion.]

[Footnote 212: The wall of London is demonstrably later than the town,
old material being found built into it. So is that of Silchester.]

[Footnote 213: York was not three miles in circumference, Uriconium
the same, Cirencester and Lincoln about two, Silchester and Bath
somewhat smaller.]

[Footnote 214: Roman milestones have been found in various places,
amongst the latest and most interesting being one of Carausius
discovered in 1895, at Carlisle. It had been reversed to substitute
the name of Constantius (see p. 222.). It may be noted that the
earliest of post-Roman date are those still existing on the road
between Cambridge and London, set up in 1729.]

[Footnote 215: See p. 117. When the existing bridge was built, Roman
remains were found in the river-bed.]

[Footnote 216: The Thames to the south, the Fleet to the west, and the
Wall Brook to the east and north.]

[Footnote 217: See p. 233. The city wall may well be due to him.]

[Footnote 218: See p. 233.]

[Footnote 219: On this functionary, see article by Domaszewski in
the 'Rheinisches Review,' 1891. His appointment was part of the
pacificatory system promoted by Agricola.]

[Footnote 220: An _archigubernus_ (master pilot) of this fleet left
his property to one of his subordinates in trust for his infant son.
The son died before coming of age, whereupon the estate was claimed by
the next of kin, while the trustee contended that it had now passed
to him absolutely. He was upheld by the Court. Another York decision
established the principle that any money made by a slave belonged
to his _bonâ fide_ owner. And another settled that a _Decurio_ (a
functionary answering to a village Mayor in France) was responsible
only for his own _Curia_.]

[Footnote 221: Inscriptions of the Twentieth have been found here.]

[Footnote 222: _Legra-ceaster_, the earliest known form of the name,
signifies Camp-chester _(Legra = Laager)_. In Anglo-Saxon writings the
name is often applied to Chester. This, however, was _the_ Chester,
_par excellence_, as having remained so long unoccupied. In the days
of Alfred it is still a "waste Chester" in the A.S. Chronicle.
The word _Chester_ is only associated with Roman fortifications in
Southern Britain. But north of the wall, as Mr. Haverfield points out,
we find it applied to earthworks which cannot possibly have ever been
Roman. (See 'Antiquary' for 1895, p. 37.)]

[Footnote 223: Bath was frequented by Romano-British society for its
medicinal waters, as it has been since. The name _Aquae_ (like
the various _Aix_ in Western Europe) records this fact. Bath was
differentiated as _Aquae Solis_; the last word having less reference
to Apollo the Healer, than to a local deity _Sul_ or _Sulis_. Traces
of an elaborate pump-room system, including baths and cisterns still
retaining their leaden lining, have here been discovered; and even
the stock-in-trade of one of the small shops, where, as now at such
resorts, trinkets were sold to the visitors.(See 'Antiquary,' 1895, p.

[Footnote 224: Similar excavations are in progress at Caergwent, but,
as yet, with less interesting results. Amongst the objects found is a
money-box of pottery, with a slit for the coins. A theatre [?] is now
(1903) being uncovered.]

[Footnote 225: See II. F. 4; also Mr. Haverfield's articles in the
'Athenaeum' (115, Dec. 1894), and in the 'Antiquary' (1899, p. 71).]

[Footnote 226: Mr. Haverfield notes ('Antiquary,' 1898, p. 235) that
British basilicas are larger than those on the Continent, probably
because more protection from weather was here necessary. Almost as
large as this basilica must have been that at Lincoln, where sections
of the curious multiple pillars (which perhaps suggested to St. Hugh
the development from Norman to Gothic in English architecture) may be
seen studding the concrete pavement of Ball Gate.]

[Footnote 227: A plan of this "church" is given by Mr. Haverfield in
the 'English Hist. Review,' July 1896.]

[Footnote 228: An inspection of the Ordnance Map (1 in.) shows this
clearly. It is the road called (near Andover) the _Port Way_.]

[Footnote 229: See p. 46.]

[Footnote 230: The water supply of Silchester seems to have been
wholly derived from these wells, which are from 25 to 30 feet in
depth, and were usually lined with wood. In one of them there were
found (in 1900) stones of various fruit trees (cherry, plum, etc.),
the introduction of which into Britain has long been attributed to
the Romans, (See Earle, 'English Plant Names.') But this find is not
beyond suspicion of being merely a mouse's hoard of recent date.]

[Footnote 231: Roman refineries for extracting silver existed in the
lead-mining districts both of the Mendips and of Derbyshire, which
were worked continuously throughout the occupation. But the Silchester
plant was adapted for dealing with far more refractory ores; for what
purpose we cannot tell.]

[Footnote 232: See paper by W. Gowland in Silchester Report (Society
of Antiquaries) for 1899.]

[Footnote 233: A glance at the maps issued by the Society of
Antiquaries will show this. The massive rampart, forming an irregular
hexagon, cuts off the corners of various blocks in the ground plan.]

[Footnote 234: The well-known Cambridge jug of Messrs. Hattersley is a
typical example.]

[Footnote 235: "Samian" factories existed in Gaul.]

[Footnote 236: See p. 43.]

DE BRITAN. This was found at Wokey Hole, near Wells.]

[Footnote 238: Haverfield, 'Ant.' p. 147.]

[Footnote 239: See 'Corpus Inscript. Lat.' Vol. VII.]

[Footnote 240: A specially interesting touch of this old country house
life is to be seen in the Corinium Museum at Cirencester--a mural
painting whereon has been scratched a squared word (the only known
classical example of this amusement):


[Footnote 241: The word _mansio_, however, at this period signified
merely a posting-station on one or other of the great roads.]

[Footnote 242: Selwood, Sherwood, Needwood, Charnwood, and Epping
Forest are all shrunken relics of these wide-stretching woodlands,
with which most of the hill ranges seem to have been clothed. See
Pearson's 'Historical Maps of England.']

[Footnote 243: Classical authorities only speak of bears in Scotland.
See P. 236.]

[Footnote 244: Cyneget., I. 468.]

[Footnote 245: _Ibid_. 69.]

[Footnote 246: In II. Cons. Stilicho, III. 299: _Magnaque taurorum
fracturae colla Britannae_.]

[Footnote 247: 'Origins of English History,' p. 294.]

[Footnote 248: A brooch found at Silchester also represents this dog.]

[Footnote 249: Symmachus (A.D. 390) represents them as so fierce as to
require iron kennels (Ep. II. 77).]

[Footnote 250: Prudentius (contra Sab. 39): _Semifer, et Scoto sentit
cane milite pejor_.]

[Footnote 251: Proleg. to Jeremiah, lib. III.]

[Footnote 252: Flavius Vopiscus (A.D. 300) tells us that vine-growing
was also attempted, by special permission of the Emperor Probus.]

[Footnote 253: The Lex Julia forbade the carrying of arms by

[Footnote 254: See Elton's 'Origins,' p. 347.]

[Footnote 255: Proem, v.]

[Footnote 256: See Fronto,'De Bello Parthico', I. 217. The latest
known inscription relating to this Legion is of A.D. 109 [C.I.L. vii.

[Footnote 257: Spartianus (A.D. 300), 'Hist. Rom.']

[Footnote 258: About a fifth of the known legionary inscriptions of
Britain have been found in Scotland.]

[Footnote 259: See p. 233.]

[Footnote 260: At the Battle of the Standard, 1138.]

[Footnote 261: That Hadrian and not Severus (by whose name it is
often called) was the builder of the Wall as well as of the adjoining
fortresses is proved by his inscriptions being found not only in them,
but in the "mile-castles" [see C.I.L. vii. 660-663]. Out of the 14
known British inscriptions of this Emperor, 8 are on the Wall; out of
the 57 of Severus, 3 only.]

[Footnote 262: Hadrian divided the Province of Britain [see p. 142]
into "Upper" and "Lower"; but by what boundary is wholly conjectural.
All we know is that Dion Cassius [Xiph. lv.] places Chester and
Caerleon in the former and York in the latter. The boundary _may_ thus
have been the line from Mersey to Humber; "Upper" meaning "nearer to

[Footnote 263: Neilson, 'Per Lineam Valli,' p.I.]

[Footnote 264: See further pp. 203-212.]

[Footnote 265: The figure has been supposed to represent Rome seated
on Britain. But the shield is not the oblong buckler of the Romans,
but a round barbaric target.]

[Footnote 266: So Tacitus speaks of "_Submotis velut in aliam insulam
hostibus_" by Agricola's rampart. And Pliny says, "_Alpes Gcrmaniam ab
Italia submovent_."]

[Footnote 267: Corpus Inscript. Lat, vii. 1125.]

[Footnote 268: Dio Cassius, lxxii. 8.]

[Footnote 269: Aelius Lampridius, 'De Commodo,' c. 8.]

[Footnote 270: Inscriptions in the Newcastle Museum show that bargemen
from the Tigris were quartered on the Tyne.]

[Footnote 271: Dio Cassius, lxxii. 9.]

[Footnote 272: Julius Capitolinus, 'Pertinax,' c. 3.]

[Footnote 273: Orosius, 'Hist' 17.]

[Footnote 274: Herodian, 'Hist.' iii. 20.]

[Footnote 275: Lucius Septimus Severus.]

[Footnote 276: Herodian, 'Hist. III.' 46. He is a contemporary

[Footnote 277: Also called Bassianus. His throne name was Marcus
Aurelius Antoninus Pius.]

[Footnote 278: Publius Septimus Geta Antoninus Pius.]

[Footnote 279: Aelius Spartianus, 'Severus,' c. 23.]

[Footnote 280: Dion Cassius, lxxvi. 12.]

[Footnote 281: Severus gave as a _mot d'ordre_ to his soldiers the "No
quarter" proclamation of Agamemnon. ('Iliad,' vi. 57): [Greek: _ton
mêtis hupekphugoi aipun olethron_].]

[Footnote 282: Dion Cassius, lxxvi. 12.]

[Footnote 283: See p. 195.]

[Footnote 284: Aurelius Victor (20) makes him (as Mommsen and others
think) restore _Antonine's_ rampart: "_vallum per_ xxxii. _passuum
millia a mari ad mare_." But more probably xxxii. is a misreading for

[Footnote 285: The very latest spade-work on the Wall (undertaken by
Messrs. Haverfield and Bosanquet in 1901) shows that the original wall
and ditch ran through the midst of the great fortresses of Chesters
and Birdoswald, which are now astride, so to speak, of the Wall;
pointing to the conclusion that Severus rebuilt and enlarged them. In
various places along the Wall itself the stones bear traces of mortar
on their exterior face, showing that they have been used in some
earlier work.]

[Footnote 286: This is the number _per lineam valli_ given in the
'Notitia.' Only twelve have been certainly identified. They are
commonly known as "stations."]

[Footnote 287: Antiquaries have given these structures the name of
"mile-castles." They are usually some fifty feet square.]

[Footnote 288: The familiar name of "Wallsend" coals reminds us of
this connection between the Tynemouth colliery district and the Wall's

[Footnote 289: So puzzling is the situation that high authorities
on the subject are found to contend that the work was perfunctorily
thrown up, in obedience to mistaken orders issued by the departmental
stupidity of the Roman War Office, that in reality it was never
either needed or used, and was obsolete from the very outset. But this
suggestion can scarcely be taken as more than an elaborate confession
of inability to solve the _nodus_.]

[Footnote 290: It should be noted that the "Vallum" is no regular
Roman _muris caespitius_ like the Rampart of Antoninus, though traces
have been found here and there along the line of some intention to
construct such a work (see 'Antiquary,' 1899, p. 71).]

[Footnote 291: In more than one place the line of fortification
swerves from its course to sweep round a station.]

[Footnote 292: Near Cilurnum the fosse was used as a receptacle for
shooting the rubbish of the station, and contains Roman pottery of
quite early date.]

[Footnote 293: See p. 233.]

[Footnote 294: See p. 232.]

[Footnote 295: The existing military road along the line of the Wall
does not follow the track of its Roman predecessor. It was constructed
after the rebellion of 1745, when the Scots were able to invade
England by Carlisle before our very superior forces at Newcastle could
get across the pathless waste between to intercept them.]

[Footnote 296: Mithraism is first heard of in the 2nd century A.D.,
as an eccentric cult having many of the features of Christianity,
especially the sense of Sin and the doctrine that the vicarious
blood-shedding essential to remission must be connected with a New
Baptismal Birth unto Righteousness. The Mithraists carried out this
idea by the highly realistic ceremonies of the _Taurobolium_; the
penitent neophyte standing beneath a grating on which the victim
was slain, and thus being literally bathed in the atoning blood,
afterwards being considered as born again [_renatus_]. It thus evolved
a real and heartfelt devotion to the Supreme Being, whom, however
(unlike Christianity), it was willing to worship under the names of
the old Pagan Deities; frequently combining their various attributes
in joint Personalities of unlimited complexity. One figure has the
head of Jupiter, the rays of Phoebus, and the trident of Neptune;
another is furnished with the wings of Cupid, the wand of Mercury, the
club of Hercules, and the spear of Mars; and so forth. Mithraism thus
escaped the persecution which the essential exclusiveness of their
Faith drew down upon Christians; gradually transforming by its deeper
spirituality the more frigid cults of earlier Paganism, and making
them its own. The little band of truly noble men and women who in the
latter half of the 4th century made the last stand against the triumph
of Christianity over the Roman world were almost all Mithraists. For
a good sketch of this interesting development see Dill, 'Roman Society
in the Last Century of the Western Empire.']

[Footnote 297: Of the 1200 in the 'Corpus Inscript. Lat.' (vol. vii.),
500 are in the section _Per Lineam Valli_.]

[Footnote 298: 'Corpus Inscript. Lat.' vol. vii., No. 759.]

[Footnote 299: Some authorities consider him to have been her own

[Footnote 300: See p. 126.]

[Footnote 301: The Gelt is a small tributary joining the Irthing
shortly before the latter falls into the Eden.]

[Footnote 302: Polybius (vi. 24) tells us that in the Roman army of
his day a _vexillum_ or _manipulum_ consisted of 200 men under two
centurions, each of whom had his _optio_. Vegetius (II. 1) confines
the word _vexillatio_ to the cavalry, but gives no clue as to its

[Footnote 303: On this inscription see Huebner, C.I.L. vii. 1. A
drawing will be found in Bruce's 'Handbook to the Wall' (ed. 1895), p.

[Footnote 304: The name _Cilurnum_ may be connected with this wealth
of water. In modern Welsh _celurn_ = caldron.]

[Footnote 305: "All hast thou won, all hast thou been. Now be God the
winner." (These final words are equivocal, in both Latin and English.
They might signify, "Now let God be your conqueror," and "Now, thou
conqueror, be God," _i. e_. "die"; for a Roman Emperor was deified at
his decease.) Spartianus, 'De Severo,' 22.]

[Footnote 306: Aelius Spartianus, 'Severus,' c. 22.]

[Footnote 307: See p. 46.]

[Footnote 308: Dio Cassius, lxxvi. 16.]

[Footnote 309: _Ibid_. lxxvii. I.]

[Footnote 310: In 369. See p. 230.]

[Footnote 311: Constans in 343. See p. 230.]

[Footnote 312: See Bruce, 'Handbook to Wall' (ed. 1895), p. 267.]

[Footnote 313: Such tablets, called _tabulae honestae missionis_
("certificates of honourable discharge"), were given to every
enfranchised veteran, and were small enough to be carried easily on
the person. Four others, besides that at Cilurnum, have been found in

[Footnote 314: None of the above-mentioned _tabulae_ found are later
than A.D. 146, which, so far as it goes, supports the contention that
Marcus Aurelius was the real extender of the citizenship; Caracalla
merely insisting on the liabilities which every Roman subject had
incurred by his rise to this status.]

[Footnote 315: See pp. 175, 176. Only those fairly identifiable are
given; the certain in capitals, the highly probable in ordinary
type, and the reasonably probable in italics. For a full list
of Romano-British place-names, see Pearson, 'Historical Maps of

[Footnote 316: Probus was fond of thus dealing with his captives. He
settled certain Franks on the Black Sea, where they seized shipping
and sailed triumphantly back to the Rhine, raiding on their way the
shores of Asia Minor, Greece, and Africa, and even storming Syracuse.
They ultimately took service under Carausius. [See Eumenius, Panegyric
on Constantius.] The Vandals he had captured on the Rhine, after their
great defeat by Aurelius on the Danube.]

[Footnote 317: This name may also echo some tradition of barbarians
from afar having camped there.]

[Footnote 318: Eutropius (A.D. 360), 'Breviarium,' x. 21.]

[Footnote 319: By the analogy of Saxon and of Lombard (_Lango-bardi_
= "Long-spears"), this seems the most probable original derivation of
the name. In later ages it was, doubtless, supposed to have to do with
_frank_ = free. The franca is described by Procopius ('De Bell. Goth.'
ii. 25.), and figures in the Song of Maldon.]

[Footnote 320: See Florence of Worcester (A.D. 1138); also the Song of

[Footnote 321: Eutropius, ix. 21.]

[Footnote 322: The Franks of Carausius had already swept that sea (see
p. 219).]

[Footnote 323: Mamertinus, 'Paneg. in Maximian.']

[Footnote 324: Caesar, originally a mere family name, was adapted
first as an Imperial title by the Flavian Emperors.]

[Footnote 325: Henry of Huntingdon makes her the daughter of Coel,
King of Colchester; the "old King Cole" of our nursery rhyme, and as
mythical as other eponymous heroes. Bede calls her a concubine, a slur
derived from Eutropius (A.D. 360), who calls the connection _obscurius
matrimonium_ (Brev. x. 1).]

[Footnote 326: Eumenius, 'Panegyric on Constantine,' c. 8.]

[Footnote 327: Eumenius, 'Panegyric on Constantius,' c. 6.]

[Footnote 328: Salisbury Plain has been suggested as the field.]

[Footnote 329: The historian Victor, writing about 360 A.D., ascribes
the recovery of Britain to this officer rather than to the personal
efforts of Constantius. The suggestion in the text is an endeavour to
reconcile his statement with the earlier panegyrics of Eumenius.]

[Footnote 330: See p. 59. An inscription found near Cirencester
proves that place to have been in Britannia Prima. It is figured
by Haverfield ('Eng. Hist. Rev.' July 1896), and runs as follows:
_Septimius renovat Primae Provinciae Rector Signum et erectam prisca
religione columnam_. This is meant for two hexameter lines, and refers
to Julian's revival of Paganism (see p. 233).]

[Footnote 331: Specimens of these are given by Harnack in the
'Theologische Literaturzeitung' of January 20 and March 17, 1894.]

[Footnote 332: See Sozomen, 'Hist. Eccl.' I, 6.]

[Footnote 333: See p. 123.]

[Footnote 334: The name commonly given to the really unknown author
of the 'History of the Britons.' He states that the tombstone of
Constantius was still to be seen in his day, and gives Mirmantum
or Miniamantum as an alternative name for Segontium. Bangor and
Silchester are rival claimants for the name, and one 13th-century MS.
declares York to be signified.]

[Footnote 335: The Sacred Monogram known as _Labarum_. Both name
and emblem were very possibly adapted from the primitive cult of the
Labrys, or Double Axe, filtered through Mithraism. The figure is never
found as a Christian emblem before Constantine, though it appears as
a Heathen symbol upon the coinage of Decius (A.D. 250). See Parsons,
'Non-Christian Cross,' p. 148.]

[Footnote 336: Hilary (A.D. 358), 'De Synodis,' § 2.]

[Footnote 337: Ammianus Marcellinus, 'Hist.' XX. I.]

[Footnote 338: Jerome calls her "fertilis tyrannorum provincia." ['Ad
Ctesiph.' xliii.] It is noteworthy that in all ecclesiastical notices
of this period Britain is always spoken of as a single province, in
spite of Diocletian's reforms.]

[Footnote 339: See p. 202.]

[Footnote 340: These Scotch pirate craft (as it would seem) are
described by Vegetius (A.D. 380) as skiffs (_scaphae_), which, the
better to escape observation, were painted a neutral tint all over,
ropes and all, and were thus known as _Picts_. The crews were dressed
in the same colour--like our present khaki. These vessels were large
open boats rowing twenty oars a side, and also used sails. The very
scientifically constructed vessels which have been found in the silt
of the Clyde estuary may have been _Picts_. See p. 80.]

[Footnote 341: Henry of Huntingdon, 'History of the English,' ii. I.]

[Footnote 342: Murat, CCLXIII. 4.]

[Footnote 343: See p. 225.]

[Footnote 344: Jerome, in his treatise against Jovian, declares that
he could bear personal testimony to this.]

[Footnote 345: See p. 194.]

[Footnote 346: Marcellinus dwells upon the chopping seas which
usually prevailed in the Straits; and of the rapid tide, which is also
referred to by Ausonius (380), "Quum virides algas et rubra corallia
nudat Aestus," etc.]

[Footnote 347: To him is probably due the reconstruction of the
"Vallum" as a defence against attacks from the south, such as the
Scots were now able to deliver. See p. 207.]

[Footnote 348: Marcellinus, 'Hist.' XXVIII. 3. See p. 202.]

[Footnote 349: 'De Quarto Consulatu Honorii,' I. 31.]

[Footnote 350: Theodosius married Galla, daughter of Valentinian I.]

[Footnote 351: For the later migrations to Brittany see Elton's
'Origins,' p. 350. Samson, Archbishop of York, is said to have fled
thither in 500, and settled at Dol. Sidonius Apollinaris speaks of
Britons settled by the Loire.]

[Footnote 352: 'In Primum Consulatum Stilichonis,' II. 247.]

[Footnote 353: Alone amongst the legions it is not mentioned in the
'Notitia' as attached to any province.]

[Footnote 354: 'Epithalamium Paladii,' 85.]

[Footnote 355: The first printed edition was published 1552.]

[Footnote 356: See p. 90.]

[Footnote 357: _Portus Adurni_. Some authorities, however, hold this
to be Shoreham, others Portsmouth, others Aldrington. The remaining
posts are less disputed. They were Branodunum (Brancaster), Garianonum
(Yarmouth), Othona (Althorne[?] in Essex), Regulbium (Reculver),
Rutupiae (Richborough), Lemanni (Lyminge), Dubris (Dover), and

[Footnote 358: There were six "Counts" altogether in the Western
Empire, and twelve "Dukes." Both Counts and Dukes were of
"Respectable" rank, the second in the Diocletian hierarchy.]

[Footnote 359: See p. 237.]

[Footnote 360: This word, however, may perhaps signify _Imperial_
rather than _London_.]

[Footnote 361: Olympiodorus (A.D. 425).]

[Footnote 362: 'Hist. Nov.' vi. 10. He is a contemporary authority.]

[Footnote 363: Tennyson, 'Guinevere,' 594. The dragon standard first
came into use amongst the Imperial insignia under Augustus, and the
red dragon is mentioned by Nennius as already the emblem of Briton
as opposed to Saxon. The mediaeval Welsh poems speak of the legendary
Uther, father of Arthur, as "Pendragon," equivalent to Head-Prince, of

[Footnote 364: See Rhys, 'Celtic Britain,' pp. 116, 136.]

[Footnote 365: Gildas (xxiii,) so calls him.]

[Footnote 366: "The groans of the Britons" are said by Bede to have
been forwarded to Aetius "thrice Consul," _i.e._ in 446, on the eve of
the great struggle with Attila.]

[Footnote 367: Nennius (xxviii.) so calls them, and they are commonly
supposed to have been clinker-built like the later Viking ships. But
Sidonius Apollinaris (455) speaks of them as a kind of coracle. See p.

    "Quin et Armorici piratam Saxona tractus Sperabant, cui
    _pelle_ salum sulcare Britannum Ludus, et _assuto_ glaucum
    mare findere lembo."

    ('Carm.' vii. 86.)]

[Footnote 368: See Elton, 'Origins,' ch. xii.]

[Footnote 369: Henry of Huntingdon, 'Hist. of the English,' ii. 1.]

[Footnote 370: Nennius, xlix. This is the reading of the oldest MSS.;
others are _Nimader sexa_ and _Enimith saxas_. The regular form would
be _Nimap eowre seaxas_.]

[Footnote 371: A coin of Valentinian was discovered in the Cam valley
in 1890. On the reverse is a Latin Cross surrounded by a laurel

[Footnote 372: _Cymry_ signifies _confederate_, and was the name
(quite probably an older racial appellation revived) adopted by the
Western Britons in their resistance to the Saxon advance.]

[Footnote 373: Arthur is first mentioned (in Nennius and the 'Life
of Gildas') as a Damnonian "tyrant" (i.e. a popular leader with no
constitutional status), fighting against "the kings of Kent." This
notice must be very early--before the West Saxons came in between
Devon and the Kentish Jutes. His early date is confirmed by his
mythical exploits being located in every Cymric region--Cornwall,
Wales, Strathclyde, and even Brittany.]

[Footnote 374: The ambition of Henry V. for Continental dominion was
undoubtedly thus quickened.]

[Footnote 375: Procopius, 'De Bello Gothico,' iv. 20.]

[Footnote 376: These presumably represent the Saxons, who were
next-door neighbours to the Frisians of Holland. But Mr. Haverfield's
latest (1902) map makes Frisians by name occupy Lothian.]

[Footnote 377: Ptolemy's map shows how this error arose; Scotland, by
some extraordinary blunder, being therein represented as an _eastward_
extension at right angles to England, with the Mull of Galloway as its
northernmost point.]

[Footnote 378: This fable probably arose from the mythical visit of
Ulysses (see p. 64 _n_.), who, as Claudian ('In Rut.' i. 123) tells,
here found the Mouth of Hades.]

[Footnote 379: Procopius, 'De Bello Gothico,' ii. 6.]

[Footnote 380: See my 'Alfred in the Chroniclers,' p. 6.]

[Footnote 381: See p. 175.]

[Footnote 382: See p. 168.]

[Footnote 383: 'Anglo-Saxon Chronicle,' A. 491: "This year Ella and
Cissa stormed Anderida and slew all that dwelt therein, so that not
one Briton was there left."]

[Footnote 384: Chester itself, one of the last cities to fall,
is called "a waste chester" as late as the days of Alfred ('A.-S.
Chron.,' A. 894).]

[Footnote 385: In the districts conquered after the Conversion of the
English there was no such extermination, the vanquished Britons being

[Footnote 386: For the British survival in the Fenland see my 'History
of Cambs.,' III., § 11.]

[Footnote 387: Romano-British relics have been found in the Victoria
Cave, Settle.]

[Footnote 388: 'Comm. on Ps. CXVI.' written about 420 A.D.]

[Footnote 389: 'Epist. ad. Corinth.' 5.]

[Footnote 390: Catullus, in the Augustan Age, refers to Britain as the
"extremam Occidentis," and Aristides (A.D. 160) speaks of it as "that
great island opposite Iberia."]

[Footnote 391: 'Menol. Graec.,' June 29. A suspiciously similar
passage (on March 15) speaks of British ordinations by Aristobulus,
the disciple of St. Paul.]

[Footnote 392: Nero. This would be A.D. 66.]

[Footnote 393: It is less generally known than it should be that the
head of St. Paul as well as of St. Peter has always figured on the
leaden seal attached to a Papal Bull.]

[Footnote 394: Tennyson, 'Holy Grail,' 53. This thorn, a patriarchal
tree of vast dimensions, was destroyed during the Reformation. But
many of its descendants exist about England (propagated from
cuttings brought by pilgrims), and still retain its unique season
for flowering. In all other respects they are indistinguishable from
common thorns.]

[Footnote 395: See also William of Malmesbury, 'Hist. Regum,' § 20.]

[Footnote 396: See p. 62.]

[Footnote 397: See Introduction to Tennyson's 'Holy Grail' (G.C.
Macaulay), p. xxix.]

[Footnote 398: See Bp. Browne, 'Church before Augustine,' p. 46.]

[Footnote 399: Chaucer, 'Sumpnour's Tale.']

[Footnote 400: Epig. xi. 54: "Claudia coeruleis ... Rufina Britannis

[Footnote 401: See p. 141.]

[Footnote 402: Epig. v. 13.]

[Footnote 403: Tacitus, 'Ann.' xiii. 32.]

[Footnote 404: See p. 69.]

[Footnote 405: Lanciani, 'Pagan and Christian Rome,' p. 110. The house
was bought by Pudens from Aquila and Priscilla, and made a titular
church by Pius I.]

[Footnote 406: Homily 4 on Ezechiel, 6 on St. Luke.]

[Footnote 407: 'Adversus Judaeos,' c. 7.]

[Footnote 408: 'Eccl. Hist.' iv.]

[Footnote 409: Pope from 177-191.]

[Footnote 410: Haddan and Stubbs, i. 25. The 'Catalogus' was composed
early in the 4th century, but the incident is a later insertion.]

[Footnote 411: See p. 225.]

[Footnote 412: He is mentioned by Gildas, along with Julius and Aaron
of Caerleon. These last were already locally canonized in the 9th
century, as the 'Liber Landavensis' testifies; and the sites of their
respective churches could still be traced, according to Bishop Godwin,
in the 17th century.]

[Footnote 413: Eborius of York, Restitutus of London, and Adelfius of
"Colonia Londinensium." The last word is an obvious misreading. Haddan
and Stubbs ('Concilia,' p. 7) suggest _Legionensium_, i.e. Caerleon.]

[Footnote 414: It is more reasonable to assume this than to
imagine, with Mr. French, that these three formed the entire British
episcopate. And there is reason to suppose that York, London, and
Caerleon were metropolitan sees.]

[Footnote 415: Canon x.: De his qui conjuges suas in adulterio
deprehendunt, et iidem sunt fideles, et prohibentur nubere; Placuit
... ne viventibus uxoribus suis, licet adulteris, alias accipiant.
[Haddan, 'Concilia,' p. 7.]]

[Footnote 416: 'Ad Jovian' (A.D. 363).]

[Footnote 417: 'Contra Judaeos' (A.D. 387).]

[Footnote 418: 'Serm. de Util. Lect. Script.']

[Footnote 419: Hom. xxviii., in II. Corinth.]

[Footnote 420: This text seems from very early days to have been a
sort of Christian watchword (being, as it were, an epitome of the
Faith). The Coronation Oath of our English Kings is still, by ancient
precedent, administered on this passage, _i.e._ the Book is opened for
the King's kiss at this point. In mediaeval romance we find the words
considered a charm against ghostly foes; and to this day the text is
in use as a phylactery amongst the peasantry of Ireland.]

[Footnote 421: Ep. xlix. ad Paulinum. These pilgrimages are also
mentioned by Palladius (420) and Theodoret (423).]

[Footnote 422: Ep. lxxxiv. ad Oceanum.]

[Footnote 423: Ep. ci. ad Evang.]

[Footnote 424: Whithern (in Latin _Casa Candida_) probably derived its
name from the white rough-casting with which the dark stone walls of
this church were covered, a strange sight to Pictish eyes, accustomed
only to wooden buildings.]

[Footnote 425: The practice, now so general, of dedicating a church
to a saint unconnected with the locality, was already current at Rome.
But hitherto Britain had retained the more primitive habit, by which
(if a church was associated with any particular name) it was called
after the saint who first built or used it, or, like St. Alban's,
the martyr who suffered on the spot. Besides Whithern, the church of
Canterbury was dedicated about this time to St. Martin, showing the
close ecclesiastical sympathy between Gaul and Britain.]

[Footnote 426: The cave is on the northern shore of the Thuner-See,
near Sundlauenen. Beatus is said to have introduced sailing into the
Oberland by spreading his mantle to the steady breeze which blows
down the lake by night and up it during the day. The name of Justus is
preserved in the Justis-thal near Merlingen.]

[Footnote 427: This name is merely the familiar Welsh _Morgan_, which
signifies _sea-born_, done into Greek.]

[Footnote 428: See Orosius, 'De Arbit. Lib.,' and other authorities in
Haddan and Stubbs.]

[Footnote 429: Sidonius, Ep. ix. 3.]

[Footnote 430: Constantius, the biographer of Germanus, says they were
sent by a Council of Gallican Bishops; but Prosper of Aquitaine (who
was in Rome at the time) declares they were commissioned by Pope
Celestine. Both statements are probably true.]

[Footnote 431: The lives of Germanus, Patrick, and Ninias will be
found in a trustworthy and well-told form in Miss Arnold-Foster's
'Studies in Church Dedication.']

[Footnote 432: See p. 185.]

[Footnote 433: Bede, 'Eccl. Hist.' I. xxvi.]

[Footnote 434: Many existing churches are more or less built of Roman
material. The tower of St. Albans is a notable example, and that of
Stoke-by-Nayland, near Colchester. At Lyminge, near Folkestone, so
much of the church is thus constructed that many antiquaries have
believed it to be a veritable Roman edifice.]

[Footnote 435: See Lanciani, 'Pagan and Christian Rome,' p. 115.]

[Footnote 436: At Frampton, near Dorchester, and Chedworth, near
Cirencester, stones bearing the Sacred Monogram have been found
amongst the ruins of Roman "villas."]

[Footnote 437: The British rite was founded chiefly on the Gallican,
and differed from the Roman in the mode of administering baptism, in
certain minutiae of the Mass, in making Wednesday as well as Friday a
weekly fast, in the shape of the sacerdotal tonsure, in the Kalendar
(especially with regard to the calculation of Easter), and in the
recitation of the Psalter. From Canon XVI. of the Council of Cloveshoo
(749) it appears that the observance of the Rogation Days constituted
another difference.]

[Footnote 438: The Mission of St. Columba the Irishman to Britain was
a direct result of the Mission of St. Patrick the Briton to Ireland.]

[Footnote 439: Magna Charta opens with the words _Ecclesia Anglicana
libera sit_; and the Barons who won it called themselves "The Army of
the Church."]

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