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Title: Chronicles (1 of 6): The Historie of England (4 of 8) - The Fovrth Booke Of The Historie Of England
Author: Holinshed, Raphael
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.

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       *       *       *       *       *

_The Britains discomfited, sore wounded, slaine, and disabled by
Plautius and his power, Claudius the Romane taketh the chiefe citie
of Cymbeline the king of Britaine, he bereaueth the Britains of
their armour, and by vertue of his conquest ouer part of the land is
surnamed Britannicus_.


Now Plautius had much adoo to find out the Britains in their lurking
holes and couerts; howbeit when he had traced them out, first
he vanquished Cataratacus, and after Togodumnus the sonnes of
Cynobellinus: for their father was dead not verie long before. These
therefore fléeing their waies, Plautus receiued part of the people
[Sidenote: Bodumni Catuellani]
called Bodumni (which were subiects vnto them that were called
Catuellani) into the obeisance of the Romans: and so leauing there a
garrison of souldiors, passed further till he came to a riuer which
could not well be passed without a bridge: wherevpon the Britains
tooke small regard to defend the passage, as though they had béene
sure inough. But Plautius appointed a certeine number of Germans which
he had there with him (being vsed to swim ouer riuers although neuer
so swift) to get ouer, which they did, sleaing and wounding the
Britains horsses, which were fastened to their wagons or chariots, so
that the Britains were not able to doo anie péece of their accustomed
seruice with the same.

Herewithall was Flauius Vespasianus (that afterwards was emperour)
with his brother Sabinus sent ouer that riuer, which being got to the
further side, slue a great number of the enimies. The residue of the
Britains fled, but the next day proffered a new battell, in the which
they fought so stoutlie, that the victorie depended long in doubtfull
balance, till Caius Sidius Geta being almost at point to be taken, did
so handle the matter, that the Britains finallie were put to flight:
for the which his valiant dooings, triumphant honors were bestowed
vpon him, although he was no consull.

The Britains after this battell, withdrew to the riuer of Thames,
néere to the place where it falleth into the sea, and knowing the
shallowes and firme places thereof, easilie passed ouer to the further
side, whom the Romans following, through lacke of knowledge in the
nature of the places, they fell into the marish grounds, and so came
to lose manie of their men, namelie of the Germans, which were the
first that passed ouer the riuer to follow the Britains, partlie by a
bridge which lay within the countrie ouer the said riuer, and partlie
by swimming, and other such shift as they presentlie made.

[Sidenote: _Togodumnus_]
The Britains hauing lost one of their rulers, namelie Togodumnus
(of whom ye haue heard before) were nothing discouraged, but rather
more egerlie set on reuenge. Plautius perceiuing their fiercenesse,
went no further, but staid and placed garrisons in stéeds where néed
required, to kéepe those places which he had gotten, and with all
spéed sent aduertisement vnto Claudius, according to that he had in
commandement, if anie vrgent necessitie should so mooue him. Claudius
therefore hauing all things before hand in a readinesse, straightwaies
vpon the receiuing of the aduertisement, departed from Rome, and came
by water vnto Ostia, and from thence vnto Massilia, and so through
France sped his iournies till he came to the side of the Ocean
sea, and then imbarking himselfe with his people, passed ouer into
Britaine, and came to his armie which abode his comming néere the
Thames side, where being ioined, they passed the riuer againe, fought
with the Britains in a pitcht field, and getting the victorie, tooke
the towne of Camelodunum (which some count to be Colchester) being the
chiefest citie apperteining vnto Cynobelinus. He reduced also
manie other people into his subiection, some by force, and some by
surrender, whereof he was called oftentimes by the name of emperour,
which was against the ordinance of the Romans: for it was not lawfull
for anie to take that name vpon him oftener than once in anie one
voiage. Moreouer, Claudius tooke from the Britains their armor
and weapons, and committed the gouernment of them vnto Plautius,
commanding him to endeuour himselfe to subdue the residue.

[Sidenote: _Dion Cassius_]
Thus hauing brought vnder a part of Britaine, and hauing made his
abode therin not past a sixtene daies, he departed and came backe
againe to Rome with victorie in the sixt month after his setting
[Sidenote: _Suetonius_]
foorth from thence, giuing after his returne, to his sonne, the
surname of Britannicus. This warre he finished in maner as before is
said, in the fourth yéere of his reigne, which fell in the yéere of
the world 4011, after the birth of our Sauiour 44, and after the
building of Rome 797.

       *       *       *       *       *

_The diuerse opinions and variable reports of writers touching the
partile conquest of this Iland by the Romans, the death of Guiderius_.


There be that write, how Claudius subdued and added to the Romane
empire, the Iles of Orknie situate in the north Ocean beyond Britaine:
which might well be accomplished either by Plautius, or some other his
lieutenant: for Plautius indéed for his noble prowesse and valiant
acts atchieued in Britaine, afterwards triumphed. Titus the sonne of
Vespasian also wan no small praise for deliuering his father out of
danger in his time, being beset with a companie of Britains, which the
said Titus bare downe, and put to flight with great slaughter. Beda
following the authoritie of Suetonius, writeth bréeflie of this
matter, and saith, that Claudius passing ouer into this Ile, to the
which neither before Iulius Cesar, neither after him anie stranger
durst come, within few daies receiued the most part of the countrie
into his subiection without battell or bloudshed.

Gyldas also writing of this reuolting of the Britains, saith thus:
"When information thereof was giuen to the senate, and that hast was
made with a spéedie armie to reuenge the same, there was no warlike
nauie prepared in the sea to fight valiantlie for the defense of the
countrie, no square battell, no right wing, nor anie other prouision
appointed on the shore to be séene, but the backes of the Britains
in stead of a shield are shewed to the persecutors, and their necks
readie to be cut off with the sword through cold feare running through
their bones, which stretched foorth their hands to be bound like
womanlie creatures; so that a common prouerbe followed thereof, to
wit, That the Britains were neither valiant in warre, nor faithfull in
peace: and so the Romans sleaing manie of the rebels, reseruing some,
and bringing them to bondage, that the land should not lie altogither
vntilled and desert, returned into Italie out of that land which was
void of wine and oile, leauing some of their men there for gouernors
to chastise the people, not so much with an armie of men, as with
scourge and whip, and if the matter so required, to applie the naked
sword vnto their sides: so that it might be accounted Rome and not
Britaine. And what coine either of brasse, siluer or gold there was,
the same to be stamped with the image of the emperour." Thus farre

[Sidenote: _Gal. Mon. Matth. West._]
In the British historie we find other report as thus, that Claudius
at his comming aland at Porchester, besieged that towne, to the rescue
whereof came Guiderius, and giuing battell to the Romans, put them to
the woorse, till at length one Hamo, being on the Romans side, changed
his shield and armour, apparelling himselfe like a Britaine, and so
entring into the thickest prease of the British host, came at length
where the king was, and there slue him. But Aruiragus perceiuing
this mischiefe, to the end the Britains should not be discouraged
therewith, caused himselfe to be adorned with the kings cote-armor,
and other abiliments, and so as king continued the fight with such
manhood, that the Romans were put to flight. Claudius retired backe to
his ships, and Hamo to the next woods, whom Aruiragus pursued, and at
length droue him vnto the sea side, and there slue him yer he could
take the hauen which was there at hand; so that the same tooke name of
him, and was called a long time after, Hamons hauen, and at length by
[Sidenote: Hampton, why  so called.]
corruption of speach it was called Hampton, and so continueth vnto
this day, commonlie called by the name of Southhampton. Thus haue you
heard how Guiderius or Guinderius (whether you will) came to his end,
which chanced (as some write) in the 28 yéere of his reigne.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Aruiragus the Britaine & Claudius the Romane with their armies doo
incounter, a composition concerning mariage concluded betweene them,
Claudius returneth to Rome_.


[Sidenote: ARUIRAGUS. _Hector Boet._]
Aruiragus the yoongest son of Kymbeline, and brother to Guinderius
(bicause the same Guinderius left no issue to succéed him) was
admitted king of Britaine in the yeere of our Lord 45, or rather 46.

This Aruiragus, otherwise called by the Britains Meuricus or Mauus, of
[Sidenote: _Caxton_.]
Tacitus Prasutagus, is also named Armiger in the English chronicle,
by which chronicle (as appéereth) he bare himselfe right manfullie
against Claudius and his Romans in the war which they made against
[Sidenote: _Gal. Mon_.]
him: in so much that when Claudius had renewed his force and woone
Porchester, and after came to besiege Winchester (in the which
Aruiragus as then was inclosed) Aruiragus assembling his power, was
readie to come foorth and giue Claudius battell: wherevpon Claudius
doubting the sequele of the thing, sent messengers vnto Aruiragus to
treat of concord, and so by composition the matter was taken vp, with
condition, that Claudius should giue his daughter Genissa in marriage
vnto Aruiragus, & Aruiragus should acknowledge to hold his kingdome of
the Romans.

[Sidenote: _Ranulfus Cestrensis_.]
Some write that Claudius in fauour of the valiant prowesse which he
saw & found in Aruiragus, honored not onlie him with the mariage of
his daughter the said Genissa, but also to the end to make the towne
more famous where this marriage was solemnized, he therefore called
it Claudiocestria, after his name, the which in the British toong was
called before that daie Caerleon, and after Glouernia, of a duke that
ruled in Demetia that hight Glunie, but now it is called Glocester.

Other there be that write, how Claudius being vanquished in battell by
Aruiragus, was compelled by the said Aruiragus to giue vnto him his
said daughter to wife, with condition as before is mentioned: and that
then Aruiragus was crowned king of Britaine. But Suetonius maie
[Sidenote: _Sueton._]
séeme to reprooue this part of the British historie, which in the
life of Claudius witnesseth, that he had by thrée wiues onlie three
daughters, that is to saie, Claudia, Antonia, and Octauia: and
further, that reputing Claudia not to be his, caused hir to be cast
downe at the doore of his wife Herculanilla, whome he had forsaken by
waie of diuorcement: & that he bestowed his daughter Antonia first
on C. Pompeius Magnus, and after on Faustus Silla, verie noble yoong
gentlemen; and Octauia he matched with Nero his wiues son. Whereby it
should appéere, that this supposed marriage betwixt Aruiragus and the
daughter of Claudius is but a feined tale.

¶ And héere to speake my fansie also what I thinke of this Aruiragus,
and other the kings (whome Galfrid and such as haue followed him doo
register in order, to succéed one after another) I will not denie but
such persons there were, and the same happilie bearing verie great
rule in the land, but that they reigned as absolute kings ouer the
whole, or that they succéeded one after another in manner as is
auouched by the same writers, it seemeth most vnlike to be true: for
rather it maie be gessed by that, which as well Gyldas as the old
approoued Romane writers haue written, that diuerse of these kings
liued about one time, or in times greatlie differing from those times
which in our writers we find noted. As for example, Iuuenal maketh
this Aruiragus, of whom we now intreat, to reigne about Domitians
time. For my part therefore, sith this order of the British kinglie
succession in this place is more easie to be flatlie denied and
vtterlie reprooued, than either wiselie defended or trulie amended, I
will referre the reforming therof vnto those that haue perhaps séene
more than I haue, or more déepelie considered the thing, to trie out
an vndoubted truth: in the meane time, I haue thought good, both to
shew what I find in our histories, and likewise in forren writers,
to the which we thinke (namelie in this behalfe, whilest the Romans
gouerned there) we maie safelie giue most credit, doo we otherwise
neuer so much content our selues with other vaine and fond conceits.

To procéed yet with the historie as we find it by our writers set
foorth: it is reported, that after the solemnization of this marriage,
which was doone with all honour that might be deuised, Claudius
[Sidenote: Legions of souldiers sent into Ireland.]
sent certeine legions of souldiers foorth to go into Ireland to subdue
that countrie, and returned himselfe to Rome.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Aruiragus denieth subiection to the Romans, Vespasian is sent to
represse him and his power, the Romane host is kept backe from
landing, queene Genissa pacifieth them after a sharpe conflict: & what
the Romane writers say of Vespasians being in Britaine, the end of


Then did king Aruiragus ride about to view the state of his realme,
repairing cities and townes decaied by the warre of the Romans, and
saw his people gouerned with such iustice and good order, that he was
both feared and greatlie beloued: so that in tract of time he grew
verie welthie, and by reason thereof fell into pride, so that he
[Sidenote: Vespasian in Britaine. _Cornel. Tacit. in uit. Agr. lib.
3 & li. 6. Gal. Mon. Rutupium_.]
denied his subiection to the Romans. Wherevpon Claudius appointed
Vespasian with an armie to go as lieutenant into Britaine. This
iournie was to him the beginning of his advancement to that honour,
which after to him most luckilie befell. But if we shall credit our
Britaine writers, he gained not much at Aruiragus hands, for where he
would haue landed at Sandwich or Richborough, Aruiragus was readie to
resist him, so as he durst not once enter the hauen: for Aruiragus had
there such a puissant number of armed men, that the Romans were afraid
to approach the land.

Vespasian therefore withdrew from thence, and coasting westward,
landed at Totnesse, and comming to Excester, besieged that citie: but
about the seuenth day after he had planted his siege, came Aruiragus,
and gaue him battell, in the which both the armies sustained great
losse of men, and neither part got anie aduantage of the other. On
the morrow after quéene Genissa made them friends, and so the warres
ceassed for that time, by hir good mediation.

¶ But séeing (as before I haue said) the truth of this historie maie
be greatlie mistrusted, ye shall heare what the Romane writers saie
of Vespasianus being héere in Britaine, beside that which we haue
alreadie recited out of Dion in the life of Guiderius.
[Sidenote: Vespasian. _Suetonius. Salcellicus_.]
In the daies of the emperor Claudius, through fauour of Narcissus
(one that might doo all with Claudius) the said Vespasian was sent as
coronell or lieutenant of a legion of souldiers into Germanie, and
being remooued from thence into Britaine, he fought thirtie seuerall
times with the enimies, and brought vnto the Romane obeisance two most
mightie nations, and aboue twentie townes, togither with the Ile of
Wight; and these exploits he atchiued, partlie vnder the conduct of
Aulus Plautius ruler of Britaine for the emperor Claudius, and partlie
vnder the same emperor himselfe. For as it is euident by writers of
good credit, he came first ouer into Britaine with the said Aulus
Plautius, and serued verie valiantlie vnder him, as before in place we
haue partlie touched. By Tacitus it appeareth, that he was called to
be partener in the gouernment of things in Britaine with Claudius,
and had such successe, as it appéered to what estate of honour he was
predestinate, hauing conquered nations, and taken kings prisoners. But
now to make an end with Aruiragus: when he perceiued that his force
was too weake to preuaile against the Romane empire, and that he
[Sidenote: _Gal. Mon._]
should striue but in vaine to shake the yoke of subiection from the
necks of the Britains, he made a finall peace with them in his old
age, and so continued in quiet the residue of his reigne, which he
lastlie ended by death, after he had gouerned the land by the space
[Sidenote: 73.]
of thirtie yéeres, or but eight and twentie, as some other imagine. He
died in the yéere of Grace 73, as one author affirmeth, and was buried
[Sidenote: _Matth. West._]
at Glocester.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Ioseph of Aramathia came into Britaine and Simon Zelotes, the
antiquitie of christian religion, Britaine gouerned by Lieutenants and
treasurers of the Romane emperors, the exploits of Ostorius Scapula
and the men of Oxfordshire, he vanquisheth the Welshmen, appeaseth the
Yorkshiremen, and brideleth the rage of the Silures_.


In the daies of the said Aruiragus, about the yeare of Christ 53,
Ioseph of Arimathia, who buried the bodie of our sauiour, being sent
by Philip the Apostle (as Iohn Bale following the authoritie of Gildas
and other British writers reciteth) after that the Christians were
dispersed out of Gallia, came into Britaine with diuers other godlie
[Sidenote: _Polydorus_.]
christian men, & preaching the gospell there amongst the Britains,
& instructing them in the faith and lawes of Christ, conuerted manie
to the true beliefe, and baptised them in the wholsome water of
regeneration, & there continued all the residue of his life, obteining
of the king a plot of ground where to inhabit, not past a foure miles
from Wells, and there with his fellowes began to laie the first
foundation of the true and perfect religion, in which place (or néere
thereinto) was afterward erected the abbeie of Glastenburie.

Nicephorus writeth in his second booke and fourth chapter, that one
Simon Zelotes came likewise into Britaine. And Theodoretus in his 9.
booke "De curandis Græcorum affectibus," sheweth that Paule being
released of his second imprisonment, and suffered to depart from Rome,
preached the gospell to the Britains and to other nations in the west.
The same thing in manner dooth Sophronius the patriarch of Ierusalem
witnesse, Tertullian also maie be a witnesse of the ancientnes of
the faith receiued here in Britaine, where he writing of these times
saith: Those places of the Britains, to the which the Romans could
not approch, were subiect vnto Christ, as were also the countries
of Sarmatia, Dacia, Germania, Scithia, and others. ¶ Thus it maie
appeare, that the christian religion was planted here in this land
shortlie after Christes time, although it certeinlie appeareth not who
were the first that preached the gospell to the Britains, nor whether
they were Gréeks or Latins.

Cornelius Tacitus writeth, that the Romane emperours in this season
[Sidenote: Treasurers or receiuers.]
gouerned this land by lieutenants and treasurers, the which were
called by the name of legats and procurators, thereby to kéepe the
vnrulie inhabitants the better in order.

[Sidenote: Aulus Plautius.]
And Aulus Plautius a noble man of Rome of the order of consuls, was
[Sidenote: Ostorius Scapula.]
sent hither as the first legat or lieutenant (in maner as before ye
haue heard) & after him Ostorius Scapula, who at his comming found the
Ile in trouble, the enimies hauing made inuasion into the countrie of
those that were friends to the Romans, the more presumptuouslie,
[Sidenote: _Cor. Tacitus lib. 12_.]
for that they thought a new lieutenant, with an armie to him
vnacquainted and come ouer now in the beginning of winter, would not
be hastie to march foorth against them. But Ostorius vnderstanding
that by the first successe and chance of warre, feare or hope is bred
and augmented, hasted forward to encounter with them, and such as he
found abroad in the countrie he slue out right on euerie side, and
pursued such as fled, to the end they should not come togither againe.
Now for that a displeasing and a doubtfull peace was not like to bring
quietnesse either to him or to his armie, he tooke from such as he
suspected, their armour. And after this, he went about to defend
the riuers of Auon & Seuerne, with placing his souldiers in camps
fortified néere to the same. But the Oxfordshire men and other of
those parties would not suffer him to accomplish his purpose in anie
quiet sort, being a puissant kind of people, and not hitherto weakened
[Sidenote: Cornelius Tacit. lib. 12.]
by warres: for they willinglie at the first had ioined in amitie
with the Romans. The countries adjoining also being induced by their
procurement, came to them, & so they chose forth a plot of ground,
fensed with a mightie ditch, vnto the which there was no waie to enter
but one, & the same verie narrow, so as the horssemen could not haue
anie easie passage to breake in vpon them. Ostorius, although he had
no legionarie souldiers, but certeine bands of aids, marched foorth
towards the place within the which the Britains were lodged, and
assaulting them in the same, brake through into their campe, where the
Britains being impeached with their owne inclosures which they had
raised for defense of the place, knowing how that for their rebellion
they were like to find small mercie at the Romans hands, when they saw
now no waie to escape, laid about them manfullie, and shewed great
proofe of their valiant stomachs.

In this battell, the sonne of Ostorius the lieutenant deserued the
[Sidenote: which was a certaine crowne, to be set on his head called
_ciuica corona_.]
price and commendation of preseruing a citizen out of the cruell
enimies hands. But now with this slaughter of the Oxfordshire men,
diuers of the Britains that stood doubtfull what waie to take, either
to rest in quiet, or to moue warres, were contented to be conformable
[Sidenote: Cangi.]
vnto a reasonable order of peace, in so much that Ostorius lead
his armie against the people called Cangi, who inhabited that part of
Wales now called Denbighshire, which countrie he spoiled on euerie
side, no enimie once daring to encounter him: & if anie of them
aduentured priuilie to set vpon those which they found behind, or on
the outsids of his armie, they were cut short yer they could escape
out of danger. Wherevpon he marched straight to their campe and giuing
them battell, vanquished them: and vsing the victorie as reason moued
him, he lead his armie against those that inhabited the inner parts
of Wales, spoiling the countrie on euerie side. And thus sharplie
pursuing the rebels, he approched néere vnto the sea side, which lieth
ouer against Ireland. While this Romane capteine was thus occupied,
he was called backe by the rebellion of the Yorkshire men, whome
forthwith vpon his comming vnto them, he appeased, punishing the first
authors of that tumult with death.

[Sidenote: _Cor. Tacitus. lib_. 12]
In the meane time, the people called Silures, being a verie fierce
kind of men, and valiant, prepared to make warre against the Romans,
for they might not be bowed neither with roughnesse, nor yet with
any courteous handling, so that they were to be tamed by an armie of
legionarie souldiers to be brought among them.

Therefore to restraine the furious rage of those people and their
neighbours, Ostorious peopled a towne néere to their borders, called
Camelodunum with certeine bands of old souldiers, there to inhabit
with their wiues and children, according to such maner as was vsed in
like cases of placing naturall Romans in anie towne or citie, for the
more suertie and defense of the same. Here also was a temple builded
in the honor of Claudius the emperour, where were two images erected,
one of the goddesse Victoria, and an other of Claudius himselfe.

       *       *       *       *       *

_The coniectures of writers touching the situation of Camelodunum
supposed to be Colchester, of the Silures a people spoken of in the
former chapter, a foughten field betwene Caratacus the British prince,
and Ostorius the Romaine, in the confines of Shropshire; the Britains
go miserablie to wracke, Caratacus is deliuered to the Romans, his
wife and daughter are taken prisoners, his brethren yeeld themselues
to their enimies_.


But now there resteth a great doubt among writers, where this citie
or towne called Camelodunum did stand, of some (and not without good
ground of probable coniectures gathered vpon the aduised consideration
of the circumstances of that which in old authors is found written
[Sidenote: Camelodunum, Colchester.]
of this place) it is thought to be Colchester. But verelie by this
place of Tacitus it maie rather seeme to be some other towne, situat
more westward than Colchester, sith a colonie of Romane souldiers were
planted there to be at hand, for the repressing of the vnquiet
[Sidenote: Silures where they inhabited.]
Silures, which by consent of most writers inhabited in Southwales, or
néere the Welsh marshes.

There was a castell of great fame in times past that hight Camaletum,
or in British Caermalet, which stood in the marshes of Summersetshire;
but sith there is none that hath so written before this time, I will
not saie that happilie some error hath growne by mistaking the name of
Camelodunum for this Camaletum, by such as haue copied out the booke
of Cornelius Tacitus; and yet so it might be doon by such as found it
short or vnperfectlie written, namelie, by such strangers or others,
to whom onelie the name of Camelodunum was onelie knowne, and
Camaletum peraduenture neuer séene nor heard of. As for example,
an Englishman that hath heard of Waterford in Ireland, and not of
Wexford, might in taking foorth a copie of some writing easilie commit
a fault in noting the one for the other. We find in Ptolomie Camedolon
to be a citie belonging to the Trinobants, and he maketh mention also
of Camelodunum, but Humfrey Lhoyd thinketh that he meaneth all one

Notwithstanding Polydor Virgil is of a contrarie opinion, supposing
the one to be Colchester in déed, and the other that is Camelodunum
to be Doncaster or Pontfret. Leland esteeming it to be certeinelie
Colchester taketh the Iceni men also to be the Northfolke men. But
howsoeuer we shall take this place of Tacitus, it is euident inough
that Camelodunum stood not farre from the Thames. And therefore to
séeke it with Hector Boetius in Scotland, or with Polydor Virgil so
far as Doncaster or Pontfret, it maie be thought a plaine error.

But to leaue each man to his owne iudgement in a matter so doubtfull,
we will procéed with the historie as touching the warres betwixt the
Romans and the Silurians, against whome (trusting not onelie vpon
their owne manhood, but also vpon the high prowesse & valiancie of
[Sidenote: _Cornelius Tacitus lib. Anna. 12_.]
Caratacus) Ostorius set forward. Caratacus excelled in fame aboue all
other the princes of Britaine, aduanced thereto by manie doubtfull
aduentures and manie prosperous exploits, which in his time he had
atchiued: but as he was in policie and aduantage of place better
prouided than the Romans: so in power of souldiers he was ouermatched.
[Sidenote: _Hu. Lhoyd_.]
And therefore he remoued the battell into the parts of that
countrie where the Ordouices inhabited, which are thought to haue
dwelled in the borders of Shropshire, Cheshire, and Lancashire, which
people together with other that misliked of the Romane gouernment,
he ioined in one, and chose a plot of ground for his aduantage,
determining there to trie the vttermost hazard of battell.

The place which he thus chose was such, as the entries, the backwaies,
and the whole situation thereof made for the Britains aduantage, and
cleane contrarie to the Romans, as inclosed among high hils. And if
there were anie easie passage to enter it vpon anie side, the same was
shut vp with mightie huge stones in manner of a rampire, and afore it
there ran a riuer without anie certeine foord to passe ouer it. This
place is supposed to lie in the confines of Shropshire aloft vpon the
top of an high hill there, enuironed with a triple rampire and ditch
of great depth, hauing thrée entries into it, not directlie one
against an other, but aslope. It is also (they saie) compassed about
with two riuers, to wit, on the left hand with the riuer called Clun,
& on the right hand with an other called Teuid. On thrée sides thereof
the clime is verie stéepe and headlong, and no waie easie to come or
reach vnto it, but onelie one.

Caratac hauing thus fortified himselfe within this place, and brought
his armie into it: to encourage his people, he exhorted them to shew
their manhood, affirming that to be the day, and that armie to be the
same wherein should appeare the beginning either of libertie then to
be recouered, or else of perpetuall bondage for euer to be susteined.
He rehersed also speciallie by name those their elders, which had
resisted Iulius Cesar, by whose high valiancie they liued free from
the bloudie thraldome and tributes of the Romans, and enioied their
wiues and children safe and vndefiled. Thus discoursing of manie
things with them, in such hope of assured victorie, that they began to
raise their cries, each one for him selfe, declaring that he was bound
by the dutie he owght to the gods of his countrie, not to shrinke
for feare of anie wounds or hurts that might chance vnto them by the
enimies weapon.

This chéerefulnesse of the Britains greatlie astonished the Romane
lieutenant. The hideous course also of the riuer before his face, the
fortifications and craggie higth of the hils, all set full of enimies
readie to beat him backe, put him in great feare: for nothing he
saw afore him, but that which séemed dreadfull to those that should
assaile. But the souldiers yet séemed to be verie desirous of battell,
requesting him to bring them to it, protesting that nothing was
able to resist the force of noble prowes. Herewith the capteins and
tribunes discoursing the like, pricked forward the earnest willes
which their souldiers had to fight.

Ostorius perceiuing such courage and readie wils in the men of warre,
as well souldiers as capteins, began to bestirre himselfe, and left
nothing vndone that might serue to set forward their earnest desire to
battell. And hauing aduisedlie considered which waies were hard and
[Sidenote: Cornelius Tacitus Annal. lib. 12.]
vnpossible to be entered vpon, and which were most easie for his
people to find passage by, he led them foorth, being most earnestlie
bent to cope with the enimie.

Now hauing passed the water without any great difficultie, but comming
to the rampire, he lost manie of his people, so long as the fight was
continued with shot and casting of darts: but after that the Romans
couering themselues with their targets, came once close togither, and
approched vnder the rampire, they remooued away the stones which the
Britains had roughlie couched togither, and so came to ioine with them
at handblowes. The Britains being vnarmed, and not able to abide the
force of the armed men, withdrew to the top of the hilles, but as well
their enimies that were light armed, as the other with heauie armour,
followed and brake in among them, so as the Britains could not turne
them anie way to escape, for the light armed men with shot a farre
off, and the heauie armed with weapons at hand, sought to make
slaughter and wracke of them on ech side, so that this was a verie
dolefull day to the Britains.

The wife and daughter of Caratake were taken prisoners, and his
brethren also yéelded themselues. He himselfe escaped, and committing
his person vnto the assurance & trust of Cartemandua queene of the
Brigants, was by hir deliuered into the hands of the Romans. All this
happened about nine yeres after the warres in Britaine first began.

       *       *       *       *       *

_The name of Caratacus famous in Italie, the maner how he and his
alies were led captiues by the Romans in triumph, his courage and
manlie speech to the emperour Claudius, whereby he and his obteine
mercie and pardon: the Britains vndertake a new reuenge against the
Romans; the cause why the Silures hated the Romans, Ostorius Scapula
dieth, the citie of Chester builded_.


[Sidenote: _Cornelius Tacit. lib. 12_. Carataks name renowmed.]
The name of Caratacus being brought out of the Iles was alreadie
spred ouer the prouinces adioining, and began now to grow famous
through Italie. Men therefore were desirous to sée what maner of man
he was that had so manie yéeres set at naught the puissant force of
the empire. For in Rome the name of Caratacus was much spoken of,
insomuch that the emperour whilest he went about to preferre his owne
honour, aduanced the glorie of him also that was vanquished: for
the people were called foorth as vnto some great notable sight or
spectacle. The pretorian bands stood in order of battell armed in the
field that laie before their lodgings, through which field Caratake
shuld come. Then passed by the traine of his friends and seruants; and
such armor, riches, iewels, and other things as had béene gotten in
those warres, were borne forward, and openlie shewed, that all men
might behold the same.

After these followed his brethren, wife, and daughters: and last of
all came Caratacus himselfe, whose countenance was nothing like to
theirs that went afore him. For whereas they fearing punishment for
their rebellion with wailefull countenance craued mercie, he neither
by countenance nor words shewd anie token of a discouraged mind, but
being presented before the emperour Claudius sitting in his tribunall
seat, he vttered this speach as followeth.

"If there had béene in me so much moderation in time of prosperitie,
[Sidenote: _* Sic_.]
as there was nobilitie of birth and puissance, I had come to this
citie rather as a friend than as a capteine *: neither should I haue
thought scorne, being borne of most noble parents, and ruling ouer
many people, to haue accepted peace by waie of ioining with you in
league. My present estate as it is to me reprochfull, so to you it
is honorable. I had at commandement, horsses, men, armor, and great
riches; what maruell is it if I were loth to forgo the same? For if
you shall looke to gouerne all men, it must néeds follow that all men
must be your slaues. If I had at the first yéelded my selfe, neither
my power nor your glorie had béene set foorth to the world, & vpon
mine execution I should straight haue béene forgotten. But if you
now grant me life, I shall be a witnesse for euer of your mercifull

The emperour with these words being pacified, granted life both to
Caratake, and also to his wife and brethren, who being loosed from
their bands, went also to the place where the empresse Agrippina sat
(not farre off) in a chaire of estate, whom they reuerenced with the
like praise and thanks as they had doone before to the emperour. After
this the senat was called togither, who discoursed of manie things
touching this honourable victorie atchiued by the taking of Caratake,
estéeming the same no lesse glorious, than when P. Scipio shewed in
[Sidenote: Siphax. L. Paulus.]
triumph Siphax king of the Numidians, or L. Paulus the Macedonian
king Perses, or other Romane capteins anie such king whom they had

Héerevpon it was determined, that Ostorius should enter the citie of
Rome with triumph like a conqueror, for such prosperous successe as
hitherto had followed him: but afterwards his procéedings were not so
luckie, either for that after Caratake was remooued out of the waie,
or bicause the Romans (as though the warre had béene finished) looked
negligentlie to themselues, either else for that the Britains taking
compassion of the miserable state of Caratake, being so worthie a
prince, through fortunes froward aspect cast into miserie, were more
earnestlie set to reuenge his quarrell. Héerevpon they incompassed the
maister of the campe, and those legionarie bands of souldiers which
were left amongst the Silures to fortifie a place there for the armie
to lodge in: and if succour had not come out of the next towns and
castels, the Romans had béene destroied by siege. The head capteine
yet, and eight centurions, and euerie one else of the companies being
most forward, were slaine. Shortlie after they set vpon the Romane
forragers, and put them to flight, and also such companies of
horssemen as were appointed to gard them. Héerevpon Ostorius set
foorth certeine bands of light horssemen, but neither could he staie
the flight by that meanes, till finallie the legions entred the
battell, by whose force they were staid, and at length the Romans
obteined the better: but the Britains escaped by flight without great
losse, by reason the daie was spent.

After this, manie bickerings chanced betwixt the Britains and Romans,
& oftentimes they wrought their feats more like the trade of them that
vse to rob by the high waies, than of those that make open warre,
taking their enimies at some aduantage in woods and bogs, as hap or
force ministred occasion vpon malice conceiued, or in hope of prey,
sometimes by commandement, and sometimes without either commandement
or knowledge of capteine or officer.

At one time the Britains surprised two bands of footmen that were with
the Romans in aid, and sent foorth to forreie abroad vnaduisedlie,
through couetousnesse of the capteins. This feat was atchiued by the
Silures also, the which in bestowing prisoners and part of the spoile
vpon other of their neighbours, procured them likewise to rebell
against the Romans, and to take part with them. The Silures were the
more earnestlie set against the Romans, by occasion of words which the
emperor Claudius had vttered in their disfauour, as thus: that euen
as the Sicambres were destroied and remooued into Gallia, so likewise
must the Silures be dealt with, and the whole nation of them
extinguished. These words being blowne abroad, and knowne ouer all,
caused the Silures to conceiue a woonderfull hatred against the
Romans, so that they were fullie bent, either to reteine their
libertie, or to die in defense thereof vpon the enimies swoord.

In the meane time Ostorius Scapula departed this life, a right noble
warrior, and one who by litle & litle insuing the steps of Aulus
Plautius his predecessor, did what he could to bring the Ile into the
forme of a prouince, which in part he accomplished.

[Sidenote: W.H. in his chronologie.]
There be some led by coniecture grounded vpon good aduised
considerations, that suppose this Ostorius Scapula began to build the
citie of Chester after the ouerthrow of Caratacus: for in those parties
he fortified sundrie holds, and placed a number of old souldiers either
there in that selfe place, or in some other néere therevnto by waie of
a colonie. And for somuch (saie they) as we read of none other of anie
name thereabouts, it is to be thought that he planted the same in Chester,
where his successors did afterwards vse to harbour their legions for the
winter season, and in time of rest from iournies which they haue to make
against their common enimies.

In déed it is a common opinion among the people there vnto this daie,
that the Romans built those vaults or tauerns (which in that citie are
vnder the ground) with some part of the castell. And verelie as
[Sidenote: _Ran. Hig._ alias _Cestrensis_.]
Ranulfe Higden saith, a man that shall view and well consider those
buildings, maie thinke the same to be the woorke of Romans rather than
of anie other people. That the Romane legions did make their abode
there, no man séene in antiquities can doubt thereof, for the ancient
name _Caer leon ardour deuy_, that is, The citie of legions vpon the
water of Dée, proueth it sufficientlie enough.

[Sidenote: Corn. Tacit.]
But to returne vnto Ostorius Scapula, we find in Corn. Tacitus, that
during his time of being lieutenant in this Ile, there were certeine
[Sidenote: Cogidune a king in Britane.]
cities giuen vnto one Cogidune a king of the Britains, who continued
faithfull to the Romans vnto the daies of the remembrance of men
liuing in the time of the said Cornelius Tacitus, who liued and wrote
in the emperor Domitianus time. This was doone after an old receiued
custom of the people of Rome, to haue both subiects and kings vnder
their rule and dominion, as who so shall note the acts and déeds of
the Roman emperours from C. Iulius Cesar (who chased Pompeie out of
Italie, and was the first that obteined the Romane empire to
himselfe; of whom also the princes and emperours succéeding him were
called Cesars) to Octauian, Tiberius, Caligula, &c: maie easilie marke
and obserue. For they were a people of singular magnanimitie, of an
ambitious spirit, gréedie of honour and renowme, and not vnaptlie
termed "Romani rerum domini, &c."

       *       *       *       *       *

_ A. Didius is sent to supplie Ostorius his roome in Britaine, the
trecherie and lecherie of queene Cartimanda, Venutius keepeth the
kingdome in spite of the Romans, by what meanes their confines in this
Ile were inlarged; the error of Hector Boetius and others touching the
Silures, Brigants, and Nouants notified, the Britains giue the Romans
a shamefull ouerthrow_.


[Sidenote: A. Didius lieutenant.]
After the deceasse of Ostorius Scapula, one A. Didius was sent to
supplie his roome, but yer he could come, things were brought out of
order, and the Britains had vanquished the legion whereof Manlius
Valens had the conduct: this victorie was set foorth by the Britains
to the vttermost, that with the bruit thereof they might strike a
feare into the lieutenants hart, now vpon his first comming ouer. And
he himselfe reported it by letters to the emperour after the largest
manner, to the end that if he appeased the matter, he might win the
more praise; or if he were put to the woorst, and should not preuaile,
that then his excuse might séeme the more reasonable and woorthie of
pardon. The Silures were they that had atchiued this victorie, and
kept a fowle stur ouer all the countries about them, till by the
comming of Didius against them, they were driuen backe and repelled.

But héerewith began trouble to be raised in another part: for after
[Sidenote: Venutius ruler of the Iugants.]
that Caratac was taken, the chiefest and most skillfull capteine
which the Britains had, was one Venutius, a ruler of the people named
Iugants, a man that remained a long time faithfull to the Romans, and
[Sidenote: Cartimanda.]
by their power was defended from his enimies, who had married with
Cartimanda queene of the Brigants or Yorkeshire men. This Cartimanda
(as ye haue heard) had deliuered Catarac into the Romans hands,
thereby ministring matter for the emperour Claudius to triumph, by
which pleasure shewed to the Romans, she increased thorough their
friendship in power and wealth, whereof followed riotous lust to
satisfie hir wanton appetite, so as she falling at square with hir
[Sidenote: Vellocatus.]
husband, married Vellocatus, one of his esquires, to whom she gaue hir
kingdome, and so dishonoured hir selfe. Héerevpon insued cruell warre,
in so much that in the end Venutius became enimie also to the Romans.
But first they tugged togither betwixt themselues, & the quéene by
a craftie policie found meanes to catch the brother and coosens of
Venutius, but hir enimies nothing therewith discouraged, but kindled
the more in wrath against hir, ceassed not to go forward with their

Manie of the Brigants disdaining to be subiect vnto a womans rule
that had so reiected hir husband, reuolted vnto Venutius: but yet the
quéenes sensuall lust mixed with crueltie, mainteined the adulterer.
Venutius therefore calling to him such aid as he could get, and
strengthened now by the reuolting of the Brigants, brought Cartimanda
to such a narrow point, that she was in great danger to fall into the
hands of hir enimies: which the Romans forséeing, vpon suit made, sent
certeine bands of horssemen and footmen to helpe hir. They had diuerse
incounters with the enimies at the first, with doubtfull successe:
[Sidenote: Venutius keepeth the kingdome in despite of the Romans.]
but at length they preuailed, and so deliuered the quéene out of
perill, but the kingdome remained to Venutius: against whom the Romans
were constreined still to mainteine warre.

About the same time, the legion also which Cesius Nasica led, got the
vpper hand of those Britains against whom he was sent. For Didius
being aged, and by victories past inough renowmed, thought it
sufficient for him to make warre by his capteins, so to staie and
kéepe off the enimie. Certeine castels and holds in déed he caused to
be built and fortified, further within the countrie than had béene
afore attempted by anie of his predecessors, and so thereby were the
confines of the Romans in this Ile somewhat inlarged. Thus haue ye
heard with what successe the Britains mainteined warre in defense of
their libertie against the Romans, whilest Claudius ruled the empire
(according to the report of the Romane writers.)

[Sidenote: The error of _Hector Boetius_.]
¶ But here you must note, that Hector Boetius, following the
authoritie of one Veremond a Spaniard, of Cornelius Hibernicus, & also
of Campbell, remooueth the Silures, Brigants, and Nouants, so farre
northward, that he maketh them inhabitants of those countries which
the Scots haue now in possession, and were euen then inhabited (as he
affirmeth) partlie by the Scots, and partlie by the Picts (as in the
Scotish historie ye may sée more at large) so that what notable feat
soeuer was atchiued by the old Britains against the Romans, the
same by him is ascribed to the Scots and Picts throughout his whole
historie, whereas (in verie truth) forsomuch as may be gathered by
coniecture und presumption of that which is left in writing by ancient
authors, the Brigants inhabited Yorkshire, the Silures Wales and the
Marches, and the Nouants the countrie of Cumberland.

But forsomuch as he hath diligentlie gathered in what maner the warres
were mainteined by those people against the Romans, and what valiant
exploits were taken in hand and finished thorough their stoutnesse
and valiancie, ye may there read the same, and iudge at your pleasure
[Sidenote: A note to be considered in the reading of _Hect. Boetius_.]
what people they were whome he so much praiseth: aduertising you
hereof by the way, that as we haue before expressed, none of the
Romane writers mentioneth any thing of the Scots, nor once nameth
them, till the Romane empire began to decay, about the time of the
emperor Constantius, father of Constantine the great: so that if they
had béene in this Ile then so famous both in peace and warre, as they
are reported by the same Boetius; maruell might it séeme, that the
Romane writers would so passe them ouer with silence.

[Sidenote: _Cor. Tac. lib. annal._ 15.]
After the death of Claudius the emperor of Rome, Claudius
Domitianus Nero succéeded him in gouernement of the empire. In the
seuenth yéere of whose reigne, which was after the incarnation 53,
the Romans receiued a great ouerthrow in Britaine, where neither the
lieutenant A. Didius Gallus (whom in this place Cornelius Tacitus
calleth Auitus) could during the time of his rule doo no more but
hold that which was alreadie gotten, beside the building of certeine
castels (as before ye haue heard) neither his successor Verannius,
beating and forreieng the woods, could atchiue anie further
enterprise, for he was by death preuented, so as he could not procéed
forward with his purpose touching the warres which he had ment to haue
folowed, whose last words (in his testament expressed) detected him
of manifest ambition: for adding manie things by way of flatterie to
content Neros mind, he wished to haue liued but two yéeres longer, in
which space he might haue subdued prouinces vnto his dominion,
meaning therby the whole Ile of Britaine. But this was a Romans brag,
sauouring rather of ambition than of truth or likelihood.

       *       *       *       *       *

_The gouernment of P. Suetonius in this Iland, he inuadeth Anglesey,
and winneth it, a strange kind of women, of the Druides, the Britains
lament their miserie and seruitude, and take aduise by weapon to
redresse it against the Romans their enimies_.


[Sidenote: P. Suetonius lieutenant.]
But now when this great losse chanced to the Romans Paulinus
Suetonius did gouerne here as lieutenant, a man most plentifullie
furnished with all gifts of fortune and vertue, and therewith a right
skilfull warrior. This Suetonius therefore wishing to tame such of
[Sidenote: Anglesey inuaded.]
the Britains as kept out, prepared to assaile the Ile of Anglesey, a
countrie full of inhabitants, and a place of refuge for all outlawes
and rebels. He builded certeine brigantins with flat kéeles to serue
for the ebbes and shallow shelues here and there, lieng vncerteinlie
in the straits which he had to passe. The footmen ferried ouer in
those vessels, the horssemen following by the foords, and swimming
when they came into the deepe, got likewise to the shore, where stood
in order of battell and huge number of armed men close togither, redie
to beat backe the Romans, and to staie them from comming to land.
[Sidenote: A strange maner of women.]
Amongst the men, a number of women were also running vp and downe
as they had béene out of their wits, in garments like to wild roges,
with their haire hanging downe about their shoulders, and bearing
firebrands in their hands. There was also a companie of their priests
[Sidenote: The Druids.]
or philosophers called Druides, who with stretched forth hands
towards heauen, thundered out curssings against the Romans in most
bitter wise.

The souldiers were so amazed with the strangenesse of this sight, that
(as men benummed of their lims and senses) they suffred themselues to
be wounded and slaine like senselesse creatures, till by the calling
vpon of their generall, and ech one incouraging other in no wise to
feare a sort of mad & distract women, they preassed forward vnder
their ensignes, bearing downe such as stood in their way, and with
their owne fire smooldered and burnt them to ashes.

[Sidenote: Anglesey won by the Romans.]
To conclude, the Romane lieutenant got possession of the whole Ile,
wherein he placed garisons of men of warre to kéepe the people there
in subiection. He also caused their woods to be cut downe, that
[Sidenote: Woods cut downe.]
were consecrated to their gods, within the which they were accustomed
to sacrifice sush as they tooke prisoners, and by the view of their
intrailes, in dismembring them, to learne of their gods some oracles
and such other things as should come to passe.

But now in the meane time, whilest Paulinus was abroad about this
enterprise, the Britains began to conferre togither of they great and
importable miseries, of their grieuous state of seruitude, of their
iniuries and wrongs, which they dailie susteined: how that by
sufferance they profited nothing, but still were oppressed with more
[Sidenote: Lieutenant & procurator.]
heauie burthens. Ech countrie in times past had onelie one king
to rule them: now had they two, the lieutenant by his capteins and
souldiers spilling their bloud, and the procurator or receiuer (as we
may call him) bereauing them of their goods and substance. The concord
or discord betwixt those that were appointed to rule ouer them, was
all alike hurtfull vnto the subiects, the lieutenant oppressing them
by his capteins and men of warre, and the procurator or receiuer
by force and reprochfull demeanours, polling them by insufferable

There was nothing frée from the couetous extortion and filthie
concupiscence of these vnsatiable persons, for in these daies (say
they) the greatest spoiler is the valiantest man, and most commonlie
our houses are robbed and ransacked by a sort of cowardlie raskals
that haue no knowledge of anie warlike feats at all. Our children are
taken from us, we are forced to go to the musters, and are set foorth
to serue in forren parties, as those that are ignorant which way to
spend our liues in the quarell of our owne countrie. What a number of
souldiers haue beene transported ouer from hence to serue in other
lands, if a iust account were taken thereof: The Germans by manhood
haue cast (said they) from their shoulders the heauie yoke of bondage,
and are not defended as we are with the maine Ocean sea, but onelie
with a riuer. Where the Britains haue their countrie, their wiues and
parents, as iust causes of war to fight for: the Romans haue none at
all, but a couetous desire to gaine by rapine, and to satisfie their
excessiue lusts.

They might easilie be compelled to depart the countrie, as Iulius
Cesar was, if the Britains would shew some proofe of the noble
prowesse that was euidentlie found in their woorthie ancestors, and
not shrinke or quaile in courage for the misaduenture that should
happilie chance by fighting one battell or two. Greatest force
and constancie alwaies remaineth with those that séek to deliuer
themselues from miserie. Now appeared it that the gods had taken some
pitie of the poore Britains, who by their diuine power did withhold
the chiefe capteine of the Romans with his armie, as it were banished
[Sidenote: Occasion not be neglected.]
in an other Iland. Let vs then (said they) take the oportunitie
of time and good occasion offered, and foorthwith procéed in our
businesse: for lesse danger it is manfullie to aduenture, and to go
forward with our purpose, than to be bewraied and taken in these our
consultations. Thus hauing taken aduise togither, and wholie misliking
their present state, they determined to take weapon in hand, and so by
force to seeke for reformation.

       *       *       *       *       *

_A catalog of causes or greeuances inciting the Britains to rebell
against the Romans, wherein is shewed what iniuries they susteined:
of diuers strange wonders and apparitions; the chiefe cause of the
Britains insurging against the Romans, they admitted as well women
as men to publike gouernement. A description of queene Voadicia, hir
personage and maner of attire_.


[Sidenote: _Cor. Tac. lib. 14_.]
The Britains indeed were occasioned to doo as they purposed,
thorough manie euill parts practised by the Romans greatlie to their
griefs and displeasures. For whereas Prasutagus (who is supposed
[Sidenote: Prasutagus.]
by Hector Boetius to be Aruiragus, king of the people called
[Sidenote: The Oxfordshire and Glocestershire men.]
Iceni) had made the emperour and two of his owne daughters his heires,
supposing by that meane to haue his kingdome and familie preserued
from all iniurie: it happened quite contrarie to that his expectation.
For his kingdome was spoiled by the Romane capteins, his wife
[Sidenote: Voadicia alias Bunduica.]
named Voadicia beaten by the souldiers, his daughters rauished, the
péeres of the realme bereft of their goods, and the kings friends made
and reputed as bondslaues.

[Sidenote: _Dion Cassius_.]
There was also an other great cause that stirred the Britains to
this rebellion, which was the confiscating of their goods: for
whereas Claudius himselfe had pardoned the chiefest persons of the
forfeitures, Decianus Catus the procurator of that Ile mainteined that
[Sidenote: Vsurie.]
the same ought to be renewed againe. To this an other griefe was
added, that where Seneca had lent to the nobilitie of the Ile, foure
hundred sestercies, ech hundred being 500000 pounds starling, or
thereabout, vpon great interest, he required the whole summe togither
by great rigor and violence, although he forced them at the first to
take this monie to vsurie.

Also such old souldiers as were placed by waie of a colonie, to
inhabit the towne of Camelodunum, expelled manie of the Britains out
of their houses, droue them out of their possessions and lands, and
accounted the Britains as slaues, and as though they had bene captiue
prisoners or bondmen. Besides this, the temple there that was built in
honor of Claudius, as an altar of eternall rule and gouernment, was
serued with préests, the which vnder colour of religion did spoile,
consume and deuoure the goods of all men.

Moreouer, such strange sights and woonders as chanced about the same
time, pricked the Britains the rather forward. For the image of the
goddesse Victoria in the temple at Camelodunum, slipping downe, turned
hir backe (as who should saie she gaue place as vanquished) to the
[Sidenote: _Dion Cassius_.]
enimies. Also in the hall where the courts of iustice were kept, there
was a maruellous great noise heard, with much laughing, and a sturre
[Sidenote: Strange woonders.]
in the theatre, with great wéeping and lamentable howling, at such
time as it was certeinlie knowne that there was no creature there
to make anie noise. The sea at a spring tide appeared of a bloudie
colour, and when the tide was gone backe, there were séene on the
[Sidenote: _Dion Cassius_.]
sands the shapes & figures of mens bodies. Women also as rauished
of their wits, and being as it were in a furie, prophesied that
destruction was at hand, so that the Britains were put greatlie in
hope, and the Romans in feare.

[Sidenote: _Polydor_.]
But those things, whether they chanced by the craft of man, or
illusion of the diuell; or whether they procéeded of some naturall
cause, which the common people oftentimes taketh superstitiouslie, in
place of strange woonders signifieng things to follow, we would
let passe, least we might be thought to offend religion; the which
teaching all things to be doone by the prouidence of God, despiseth
the vaine predictions of haps to come, if the order of an historie
(saith Polydor Virgil) would so permit, the which requireth all things
to be written in maner as they fall out and come to passe.

[Sidenote: _Cor. Tac. li. 15_. Voadicia by Dion Cassius is called
But the Britains were chiefelie mooued to rebellion by the iust
complaint of Voadicia, declaring how vnséemelie she had beene vsed
and intreated at the hands of the Romans: and because she was most
earnestlie bent to séeke reuenge of their iniuries, and hated the name
of the Romans most of all other, they chose hir to be capteine (for
[Sidenote: The ancient Britains admitted as well women as men to
publike gouernment.]
they in rule and gouvernment made no difference then of sex,
whether they committed the same to man or woman) and so by a generall
conspiracie, the more part of the people hauing also allured the Essex
men vnto rebellion, rose and assembled themselues togither to make
warre against the Romans. There were of them a hundred and twentie
thousand got togither in one armie vnder the leading of the said
Voadicia, or Bunduica (as some name hir.)

She therefore to encourage hir people against the enimies, mounted vp
into an high place raised vp of turfes & sods made for the nonce, out
of the which she made a long & verie pithie oration. Hir mightie tall
personage, comelie shape, seuere countenance, and sharpe voice, with
hir long and yellow tresses of heare reaching downe to hir thighes,
hir braue and gorgeous apparell also caused the people to haue hir in
great reuerence. She ware a chaine of gold, great and verie massie,
and was clad in a lose kirtle of sundrie colours, and aloft therevpon
she had a thicke Irish mantell: hereto in hir hand (as hir custome
was) she bare a speare, to shew hirselfe the more dreadfull.

       *       *       *       *       *

_The oration of queene Voadicia full of prudence and spirit to the
Britains, for their encouragement against the Romans, wherein she
rippeth vp the vile seruitude and shamefull wrongs which their enimies
inflicted vpon them, with other matters verie motiue, both concerning
themselues and their enimies, hir supplication and praier for


Now Voadicia being prepared (as you heare) set foorth with such
maiestie, that she greatlie incouraged the Britains; vnto whome for
their better animating and emboldening, she vttered this gallant
oration in manner and forme following.

[Sidenote: The oration of Voadicia.]
"I doo suppose (my louers and friends) that there is no man here
but dooth well vnderstand how much libertie and fréedome is to be
preferred before thraldome and bondage. But if there haue bene anie
of you so deceiued with the Romane persuasions, that ye did not for
a time see a difference betwéene them, and iudged whether of both is
most to be desired: now I hope that hauing tried what it is to be
vnder both, ye will with me reforme your iudgement, and by the harmes
alreadie taken, acknowledge your ouersight, and forsake your former
error. Againe, in that a number of you haue rashlie preferred an
externall souereigntie before the customes and lawes of your owne
countrie, you doo at this time (I doubt not) perfectlie vnderstand how
much free pouertie is to be preferred before great riches, wherevnto
seruitude is annexed; and much wealth in respect of captiuitie vnder
forren magistrats, wherevpon slauerie attendeth. For what thing (I
beséech you) can there be so vile & grieuous vnto the nature of man,
that hath not happened vnto vs, sithens the time that the Romans haue
bene acquainted with this Iland?

"Are we not all in manner bereaued of our riches & possessions? Doo
not we (beside other things that we giue, and the land that we till
for their onelie profit) paie them all kinds of tributs, yea for our
owne carcases? How much better is it to be once aloft and fortunate in
deed, than vnder the forged and false title of libertie, continuallie
to paie for our redemption a fréedome? How much is it more commendable
to lose our liues in defense of our countrie, than to carie about not
so much as our heads toll frée, but dailie oppressed & laden with
innumerable exactions? But to what end doo I remember and speake of
these things, since they will not suffer by death to become frée? For
what and how much we paie for them that are dead, there is not one
here but he dooth well vnderstand. Among other nations such as are
brought into seruitude, are alwaies by death discharged of their
bondage: onelie to the Romans the dead doo still liue, and all to
increaes their commoditie and gaine.

"If anie of vs be without monie (as I know not well how and which way
we should come by anie) then are we left naked, & spoiled of that
which remaineth in our houses, & we our selues as men left desolate &
dead. How shall we looke for better dealing at their hands hereafter,
that in the beginning deale so vncourteouslie with vs: since there is
no man that taketh so much as a wild beast, but at the first he will
cherish it, and with some gentlenesse win it to familiaritie? But we
ourselues (to saie the trueth) are authors of our owne mischiefe,
which suffered them at the first to set foot within our Iland, and did
not by and by driue them backe as we did Cesar, or slue them with our
swords when they were yet farre off, and that the aduenturing hither
was dangerous: as we did sometime to Augustus and Caligula.

"We therefore that inhabit this Iland, which for the quantitie thereof
maie well be called a maine, although it be inuironed about with the
Ocean sea, diuiding vs from other nations, so that we séeme to liue
vpon an other earth, & vnder a seuerall heauen: we, euen we (I saie)
whose name hath béene long kept hid from the wisest of them all, are
now contemned and troden vnder foot, of them who studie nothings
else but how to become lords & haue rule of other men. Wherefore my
welbeloued citizens, friendes, and kinsfolkes (for I thinke we are all
of kin, since we were borne and dwell in this Ile, and haue one name
common to vs all) let vs now, euen now (I saie, because we haue not
doone it heretofore, and whilest the remembrance of our ancient
libertie remaineth) sticke togither, and performe that thing which
dooth perteine to valiant and hardie courages, to the end we maie
inioie, not onelie the name of libertie, but also freédome it selfe,
and thereby leaue our force and valiant acts for an example to our
posteritie: for if we which haue béene liberallie and in honest maner
brought vp, should vtterlie forget our pristinate felicitie: what may
we hope for in those that shall sucéed vs, and are like to be brought
vp in miserie and thraldome?

"I doo not make rehearsall of these things vnfo you, to the end I
would prouoke you to mislike of this present estate of things (for
well I know you abhorre it sufficientlie alreadie) neither to put you
in feare of those things that are likelie to fall hereafter (because
you doo feare and sée them verie well before hand) but to the end I
maie giue you heartie thankes and woorthie commendations, for that
of your owne accord and meanes you determine so well to prouide for
things necessarie (thereby to helpe both me and your selues with
willing minds) as men that are nothing in doubt of all the Romane

"If you consider the number of your enimies, it is not greater than
yours: if you regard their strength, they are no stronger than you:
and all this dooth easilie appéere by the bassinets, habergeons, &
greiues wherewith you be armed; and also by the walls, ditches and
trenches that you haue made for your own defense, to kéepe off their
excursions, who had rather fight with vs a farre off, than cope &
deale with vs at hand strokes, as our custome of the warres and
martiall discipline dooth require. Wherefore we doo so farre exceed
them in force, that in mine opinion, our armie is more strong than
stone walls, and one of our targets woorth all the armour that they
doo beare vpon them: by meanes whereof, if the victorie be ours, we
shall soone make them captiues: or if we lose the field, we shall
easilie escape the danger.

"Furthermore, if after the flight we shall indeuour to méet anie
where, we haue the marishes héere beneath to hide vs in, and the hils
round about to kéepe them off, so that by no meanes they shall haue
their purpose of vs, whereas they being ouercharged with heavie
armour, shall neither be able to follow, if we flée; nor escape out of
our danger, if they be put to flight: if they happen to breake out at
anie time as desirous to make a rode, they returne by and by to their
appointed places, where we maie take them as birds alreadie in cage.
In all which things, as they are farre inferior to vs, so most of all
in this, that they can not indure hunger, thirst, cold, heat, and
sunneshine, as we can doo.

"In their houses also and tents, they make much account of their baked
meates, wine, oile, and abroad of the shadow, that if anie of these
doo faile them, they either die foorthwith, or else in time they
languish and consume: whereas to vs euerie hearbe and root is meat,
euerie iuice an oile, all water pleasant wine, and euerie trée an
house. Beside this, there is no place of the land vnknowne to vs,
neither yet vnfriendlie to succour vs at néed; whereas to the Romans
they are for the most part vnknowne and altogither dangerous, if they
should stand in néed: we can with ease swim ouer euerie riuer both
naked and clad, which they with their great ships are scarse able to
performe. Wherefore with hope and good lucke let vs set vpon them
couragiouslie, and teach them to vnderstand, that since they are no
better than hares and foxes, they attempt a wrong match, when they
indeuour to subdue the grehounds and the woolues." With which words
the quéene let an hare go out of hir lap, as it were thereby to giue
prognostication of hir successe, which comming well to passe, all the
companie showted, and cried out vpon such as not long before had doone
such violence to so noble a personage. Presentlie vpon this action,
Voadicia calling them togither againe, procéeded forward with hir
praier, which she made before them all, holding vp hir hands after
this manner:

"I giue thée thanks O Adraste, and call vpon thee thou woman of women,
which reignest not ouer the burthen-bearing Aegyptians, as Nitocris;
neither ouer their merchants, as dooth Semiramis, for these trifles we
haue learned latelie of the Romans: neither ouer the people of Rome,
as a little héeretofore Messalina, then Agrippina, and now Nero, who
is called by the name of a man, but is in déed a verie woman, as dooth
appéere by his voice, his harpe, and his womans attire: but I call
vpon thee as a goddesse which gouernest the Britains, that haue
learned not to till the field, nor to be handicrafts men, but to lead
their liues in the warres after the best manner: who also as they
haue all other things, so haue they likewise their wiues and children
common, whereby the women haue the like audacitie with the men, and no
lesse boldnesse in the warres than they.

"Therefore sithens I haue obteined a kingdome among such a mightie
people, I beséech thée to grant them victorie, health, and libertie,
against these contentious, wicked, and vnsatiable men (if they maie be
called men, which vse warme bathings, delicate fare, hot wines, swéet
oiles, soft beds, fine musicke, and so vnkindlie lusts) who are
altogither giuen to couetousnesse and crueltie, as their dooings doo
declare. Let not I beséech thée, the Neronian or Domitian tyrannie
anie more preuaile vpon me, or (to saie truth) vpon thée, but let them
rather serue thée, whose heauie oppression thou hast borne withall
a long season, and that thou wilt still be our helper onlie, our
defender, our fauourer, and our furtherer, O noble ladie, I hartilie
beséech thée."

       *       *       *       *       *

_Queene Voadicia marcheth against the Romans, to whom she giueth
a shamefull and bloudie ouerthrow without anie motion of mercie,
dredfull examples of the Britains crueltie indifferentlie executed
without exception of age or sex_.


When Voadicia had made an end of hir praier, she set forward against
hir enimies, who at that time were destitute in déed of their
lieutenant Paulinus Suetonius, being as then in Anglesey (as before
[Sidenote: _Corn. Tacit._ Catus Decianus procurator.]
ye haue heard.) Wherefore the Romans that were in Camelodunum sent for
aid vnto Catus Decianus the procurator, that is, the emperours agent,
treasurer, or receiuer, for in that citie (although it were inhabited
by Romans) there was no great garrison of able men. Wherevpon the
procurator sent them such aid as he thought he might well spare, which
was not past two hundred men, and those not sufficientlie furnished
either with weapon or armour.

The citie was not compassed with anie rampire or ditch for defense,
such as happilie were priuie to the conspiracie, hauing put into the
heads of the Romans that no fortification néeded: neither were the
aged men nor women sent awaie, whereby the yoong able personages might
without trouble of them the better attend to the defense of the citie:
but euen as they had béene in all suertie of peace, and frée from
suspicion of anie warre, they were suddenlie beset with the huge armie
of the Britains, and so all went to spoile and fire that could be
found without the inclosure of the temple, into the which the Romane
souldiers (striken with sudden feare by this sudden comming of
the enimies) had thronged themselues. Where being assieged by the
Britains, within the space of two daies the place was woonne, and they
that were found within it, slaine euerie mothers sonne.

After this, the Britains incouraged with this victorie, went to méet
with Petus Cerealis lieutenant of the legion, surnamed the ninth,
and boldlie incountering with the same legion, gaue the Romans the
ouerthrow and slue all the footmen, so that Cerealis with much adoo
escaped with his horssemen, and got him backe to the campe, and saued
himselfe within the trenches. Catus the procurator being put in feare
with this ouerthrow, and perceiuing what hatred the Britains bare
towards him, hauing with his couetousnesse thus brought the warre vpon
the head of the Romans, got him ouer into Gallia.

But Suetonius aduertised of these dooings, came backe out of Anglesey,
and with maruellous constancie marched through the middest of his
enimies to London, being as then not greatlie peopled with Romans,
though there was a colonie of them, but full of merchants, and well
prouided of vittels: he was in great doubt at his comming thither,
whether he might best staie there as in a place most conuenient,
or rather séeke some other more easie to be defended. At length
considering the small number of his men of warre, and remembring how
Cerealis had sped by his too much rashnesse, he thought better with
the losing of one towne to saue the whole, than to put all in danger
of irrecouerable losse. And therewith nothing mooued at the praier &
teares of them which besought him of aid and succour, he departed, and
those that would go with him he receiued into his armie, those that
taried behind were oppressed by the enimies: and the like destruction
happened to them of Verolanium, a towne in those daies of great
fame, situat néere to the place where the towne of Saint Albons now

The Britains leauing the castels and fortresses vnassaulted, followed
their game in spoiling of those places which were easie to get, and
where great plentie of riches was to be found, vsing their victorie
with such crueltie, that they slue (as the report went) to the number
[Sidenote: 80000, saith _Dion_.]
of 70 thousand Romans, and such as tooke their part in the said
places by the Britains thus woon and conquered. For there was nothing
with the Britains but slaughter, fire, gallowes, and such like, so
earnestlie were they set on reuenge. They spared neither age nor sex:
women of great nobilitie and woorthie fame they tooke and hanged vp
naked, and cutting off their paps, sowed them to their mouthes, that
they might séeme as if they sucked and fed on them, and some of their
bodies they stretched out in length, and thrust them on sharpe stakes.
All these things they did in great despite whilest they sacrificed in
their temples, and made feasts, namelie in the wood consecrated to the
honour of Andates, for so they called the goddesse of victorie whom
they worshipped most reuerentlie.

       *       *       *       *       *

_P. Suetonius the Romane with a fresh power assalteth the Britains,
whose armie consisted as well of women as men: queene Voadicia
incourageth hir souldiers, so dooth Suetonius his warriors, both
armies haue a sharpe conflict, the Britains are discomfited and
miserablie slaine, the queene dieth, Penius Posthumus killeth
himselfe, the Britains are persecuted with fire, swoord, and famine,
the grudge betweene Cassicianus and Suetonius, whome Polycletus is
sent to reconcile, of his traine, and how the Britains repined at


In this meane time there came ouer to the aid of Suetonius, the legion
surnamed the 14, and other bands of souldiers and men of warre, to
the number of ten thousand in the whole, wherevpon (chieflie bicause
vittels began to faile him) he prepared to giue battell to his
enimies, and chose out a plot of ground verie strong within straits,
and backed with a wood, so that the enimies could not assault his
campe but on the front: yet by reason of their great multitude and
[Sidenote: The Britains were at that time 230000 men, (as _Dion_
hope of victorie conceiued by their late prosperous successe, the
Britains vnder the conduct of quéene Voadicia aduentured to giue
battell, hauing their women there to be witnesses of the victorie,
whome they placed in charrets at the vttermost side of their field.

[Sidenote: _Corn. Tacit. li. 15 Dion Cassius_.]
Voadicia, or Boudicia (for so we find hir written by some copies,
and Bonuica also by Dion) hauing hir daughters afore hir, being
mounted into a charret, as she passed by the souldiers of ech sundrie
countrie, told them "it was a thing accustomed among the Britains to
go to the warres vnder the leading of women; but she was not now come
foorth as one borne of such noble ancestors as she was descended from,
to fight for hir kingdome and riches; but as one of the meaner sort,
rather to defend hir lost libertie, and to reuenge hir selfe of the
enimie, for their crueltie shewed in scourging hir like a vagabond,
and shamefull deflouring of hir daughters: for the licentious lust of
the Romans was so farre spred and increased, that they spared neither
the bodies of old nor yoong, but were readie most shamefullie to abuse
them, hauing whipped hir naked being an aged woman, and forced hir
daughters to satisfie their filthie concupiscence: but (saith she) the
gods are at hand readie to take iust reuenge.

"The legion that presumed to incounter with vs is slaine and beaten
downe. The residue kéepe them close within their holds, or else séeke
waies how to flée out of the countrie: they shall not be once able so
much as to abide the noise and clamor of so manie thousands as we
are héere assembled, much lesse the force of our great puissance and
dreadfull hands. If ye therefore (said she) would wey and consider
with your selues your huge numbers of men of warre, and the causes why
ye haue mooued this warre, ye would surelie determine either in this
battell to die with honour, or else to vanquish the enimie by plaine
force, for so (quoth she) I being a woman am fullie resolued, as for
you men ye maie (if ye list) liue and be brought into bondage."

"Neither did Suetonius ceasse to exhort his people: for though he
trusted in their manhood, yet as he had diuided his armie into three
battels, so did he make vnto ech of them a seuerall oration, willing
them not to feare the shrill and vaine menacing threats of the
Britains, sith there was among them more women than men, they hauing
no skill in warrelike discipline, and heereto being naked without
furniture of armour, would foorthwith giue place when they should
féele the sharpe points of the Romans weapons, and the force of them
by whom they had so often béene put to flight. In manie legions (saith
he) the number is small of them that win the battell. Their glorie
therefore should be the more, for that they being a small number
should win the fame due to the whole armie, if they would (thronging
togither) bestow their weapons fréelie, and with their swoords and
targets preasse forward vpon their enimies, continuing the slaughter
without regard to the spoile, they might assure themselues when the
victorie was once atchiued to haue all at their pleasures."

Such forwardnesse in the souldiers followed vpon this exhortation of
the couragious generall, that euerie one prepared himselfe so readilie
to doo his dutie, and that with such a shew of skill and experience,
that Suetonius hauing conceiued an assured hope of good lucke to
follow, caused the trumpets to sound to the battell. The onset was
giuen in the straits, greatlie to the aduantage of the Romans, being
but a handfull in comparison to their enimies. The fight in the
beginning was verie sharpe and cruell, but in the end the Britains
being a let one to another (by reason of the narrownesse of the place)
were not able to susteine the violent force of the Romans their
enimies, so that they were constreind to giue backe, and so being
disordered were put to flight, and vtterlie discomfited.

[Sidenote: 80000 Britains slaine.]
There were slaine of the Britains that day few lesse than 80000
thousand*, as Tacitus writeth. For the straits being stopped with
the charrets, staied the flight of the Britains, so as they could
not easilie escape: and the Romans were so set on reuenge, that
they spared neither man nor woman, so that manie were slaine in the
battell, manie amongst the charrets, and a great number at the
woods side, which way they made their flight, and manie were taken
prisoners. Those that escaped, would haue fought a new battell, but
in the meane time Voadicia, or Bonuica deceassed of a naturall
infirmitie, as Dion Cassius writeth, but other say that she poisoned
hir selfe, and so died, because she would not come into the hands of
hir bloodthirstie enimies. There died of the Romans part in this most
notable battell 400, and about the like number were grieuouslie hurt
and most pitifullie wounded.

[Sidenote: Penius Posthumous sleieth himselfe.]
Penius Posthumous maister of the campe of the second legion,
vnderstanding the prosperous successe of the other Romane capteins,
because he had defrauded his legion of the like glorie, and had
refused to obeie the commandements of the generall, contrarie to the
vse of warre, slue himselfe.

After this all the Romane armie was brought into the field to make an
end of the residue of the warre. And the emperour caused a supplie to
be sent out of Germanie being 2000 legionarie souldiers, and 8 bands
of aids, with 1000 horssemen, by whose comming the bands of the ninth
legion were supplied with legionarie souldiers, and those bands and
wings of horssemen were appointed to places where they might winter,
and such people of the Britains as were either enimies, or else stood
in doubt whether to be friends or enimies in déed, were persecuted
with fire and sword.

But nothing more afflicted them than famine, for whilest euerie man
gaue himselfe to the warre, and purposed to haue liued vpon the
prouision of the Romans and other their enimies, they applied not
themselues to tillage, nor to anie husbanding of the ground, and long
[Sidenote: Julius Cassickinus procurator.]
it was yer they (being a fierce kind of people) fell to embrace
peace, by reason that Iulius Cassicianus, who was sent into Britaine
as successor to Catus, fell at square with Suetonius, and by his
priuat grudge hindered the prosperous successe of publike affaires.
He sticked not to write to Rome, that except an other were sent to
succéed in the roome that Suetonius did beare, there would be no end
of the warres. Herevpon one Polycletus, which sometime had béene a
bondman, was sent into Britaine, as a commissioner to surueie the
state of the countrie, to reconcile the legat and procurator, & also
to pacifie all troubles within the Ile. The port which Polycletus
bare was great, for he was furnished with no small traine that
attended vpon him, so that his presence seemed verie dreadfull to the
Romans. But the Britains that were not yet pacified, thought great
scorne to see such honorable capteins and men of warre as the Romans
were, to submit themselues to the order of such a one as had béene a

       *       *       *       *       *

_In what state the Iland stood whiles Aruiragus reigned; the dissolute
and loose gouernement of Petronius Turpilianus, Trebellius Maximus,
and Victius Volanus, thrée lieutenants in Brltaine for the Romane
emperours, of Iulius Frontinus who vanquished the Silures_.


In place of Suetonius, was Petronius Turpilianus (who had latelie
béene consull) appointed to haue gouernance of the armie in Britaine,
the which neither troubling the enimie, nor being of the enimie in
anie wise troubled or prouoked, did colour slouthfull rest with
the honest name of peace and quietnesse, and so sat still without
exploiting anie notable enterprise.

After Turpilianus, Trebellius Maximus was made lieutenant of
Britaine, who likewise with courteous demeanour sought to kéepe the
Britains in rest rather than by force to compell them. And now began
the people of the Ile to beare with pleasant faults and flattering
vices, so that the ciuill warres that chanced in those daies after
the death of the emperour Nero at home, might easilie excuse the
slouthfulnesse of the Romane lieutenants.

Moreouer, there rose dissention amongest their men of warre, which
being vsed to lie abroad in the field, could not agrée with the idle
life; so that Trebellius Maximus was glad to hide himselfe from the
sight of the souldiers being in an vprore against him, till at length
humbling himselfe vnto them further than became his estate, he
gouerned by waie of intreatie, or rather at their courtesie. And so
was the commotion staied without bloudshed, the armie as it were
hauing by couenant obtained to liue licentiouslie, and the capteine
suertie to liue without danger to be murthered.

Neither Victius Volanus that succéeded Maximus whilest the time of
the ciuill warres as yet endured, did trouble the Britains, vsing the
same slacknesse and slouth that the other lieutenants had vsed before
him, and permitted the like licence to the presumptuous souldiers: but
yet was Volanus innocent as touching himselfe, and not hated for
anie notable crime or vice: so that he purchased fauour, although
authoritie wanted.

But after that the emperour Vsepasianus had subdued his aduersaries,
and atteined the imperiall gouernment, as well ouer Britaine as ouer
other parts of the world, there were sent hither right noble
[Sidenote: _Cor. Tacitus_.]
capteins, with diuers notable bands of souldiers, and Petilius
Cerialis being appointed lieutenant, put the Britains in great feare,
by inuading the Brigants the mightiest nation of all the whole Iland:
and fighting manie battels, and some right bloudie with those people,
he subdued a great part of the countrie at the last.

After him succéeded as lieutenant of Britaine, one Iulius
Frontinus, who vanquished and brought to the Romane subiection by
force of armes the people called Silures, striuing not onelie against
the stout resistance of the men, but also with the hardnesse &
combersome troubles of the places.

¶ Thus may you perceiue in what state this Ile stood in the time that
Aruiragus reigned in the same, as is supposed by the best histories of
the old Britains: so that it may be thought that he gouerned rather a
part of this land, than the whole, and bare the name of a king,
the Romans not hauing so reduced the countrie into the forme of a
prouince, but that the Britains bare rule in diuerse parts thereof,
and that by the permission of the Romans, which neuerthelesse had
their lieutenants and procuratours here, that bare the greatest rule
vnder the aforesaid emperours.

       *       *       *       *       *

_The state of this Iland under Marius the sonne of Aruiragus, the
comming in of the Picts with Roderike their king, his death in the
field, the Picts and Scots enter into mutuall aliance, the monument of
Marius, his victorie ouer the Picts, his death and interrement_.


[Sidenote: MARIUS. _Hector Boetius_ saith that his Marius was a
Romane. 73.]
After the decease of Aruiragus, this sonne Marius succeeded him in
the estate, and began his reigne in the yeare of our Lord 73. In the
old English chronicle he is fondlie called Westmer, & was a verie wise
man, gouerning the Britains in great prosperitie, honour and wealth.

In the time of this mans reigne, the people called Picts inuaded
[Sidenote: Of these you maie reade more in pag. _Matth. West._]
this land, who are iudged to be descended of the nation of the
Scithians, neare kinsmen to the Goths, both by countrie and maners,
a cruell kind of men and much giuen to the warres. This people with
their ringleader Roderike, or (as some name him) Londorike, entering
the Ocean sea after the maner of rouers, arriued on the coasts of
Ireland, where they required of the Scots new seats to inhabit in: for
the Scots which (as some thinke) were also descended of the Scithians,
did as then inhabit in Ireland: but doubting that it should not be for
their profit to receiue so warlike a nation into that Ile, feining as
it were a friendship, and excusing the matter by the narrownesse of
the countrie, declared to the Picts, that the Ile of Britaine was not
farre from thence, being a large countrie and a plentifull, and not
greatly inhabited: wherefore they counselled them to go thither,
promising vnto them all the aid that might be.

The Picts more desirous of spoile than of rule or gouernment without
delaie returned to the sea, and sailed towards Britaine, where being
arriued, they first inuaded the north parts thereof, and finding
there but few inhabiters, they began to wast and forrey the countrie:
whereof when king Marius was aduertised, with all speed he assembled
[Sidenote: Roderike king of Picts slaine.]
his people, and made towards his enimies, and giuing them battell,
obtained the victorie, so that Roderike was there slaine in the field,
and his people vanquished.

Vnto those that escaped with life, Marius granted licence that they
might inhabit in the north part of Scotland called Catnesse, being as
then a countrie in maner desolate without habitation: wherevpon they
withdrew thither, and setled themselues in those parties. And bicause
the Britains disdained to grant vnto them their daughters in mariage,
they sent vnto the Scots into Ireland, requiring to haue wiues of
their nation. The Scots agréed to their request, with this condition,
that where there wanted lawfull issue of the kings linage to succéed
in the kingdome of the Picts, then should they name one of the womans
side to be their king: which ordinance was receiued and obserued euer
after amongst the Picts, so long as their kingdome endured.

Thus the Picts next after the Romans were the first of anie strangers
that came into this land to inhabit as most writers affirme, although
the Scotish chronicles auouch the Picts to be inhabiters here before
[Sidenote: _Polydor. Matth. West._]
the incarnation of our sauiour. But the victorie which Marius obteined
against their king Roderike, chanced in the yéere after the
incarnation 87. In remembrance of which victorie, Marius caused a
stone to be erected in the same place where the battell was fought, in
which stone was grauen these words, _Marij victoria_. The English
chronicle saith that this stone was set vp on Stanesmoore, and that
the whole countrie thereabout taking name of this Marius, was
Westmaria, now called Westmerland.

King Marius hauing thus subdued his enimies, and escaped the danger of
their dreadfull inuasion, gaue his mind to the good gouernement of
his people, and the aduancement of the common wealth of the realme,
continuing the residue of his life in great tranquillitie, and
[Sidenote: _Matt. West._ Thus find we in the British and English
histories touching this Marius.]
finallie departed this life, after he had reigned (as most writers
say) 52, or 53 yéeres. Howbeit there be that write, that he died in
the yéere of our Lord 78, and so reigned not past fiue or six yéeres
at the most. He was buried at Caerleill, leauing a sonne behind him
called Coill.

Humfrey Lhoyd séemeth to take this man and his father Aruiragus to be
all one person, whether mooued thereto by some catalog of kings which
he saw, or otherwise, I cannot affirme: but speaking of the time when
the Picts and Scots should first come to settle themselues in this
land, he hath these words; Neither was there anie writers of name,
that made mention either of Scots or Picts before Vespasianus time,
about the yeere of the incarnation 72: at what time Meurig or Maw, or
Aruiragus reigned in Britaine, in which time our annales doo report,
that a certeine kind of people liuing by pirasie and rouing on the
sea, came foorth of Sueden, or Norwaie, vnder the guiding of one
Rhithercus, who landed in Albania, wasting all the countrie with
robbing and spoiling so farre as Caerleill, where he was vanquished in
battell, and slaine by Muragus, with a great part of his people; the
residue that escaped by flight, fled to their ships, and so conueied
themselues into the Iles of Orkney and Scotland, where they abode
quietlie a great while after.

Thus farre haue I thought good to shew of the foresaid Lhoyds booke,
for that it seemeth to carie a great likelihood of truth with it, for
the historie of the Picts, which vndoubtedlie I thinke were not as yet
inhabiting in Britaine, but rather first placing themselues in
the Iles of Orkney, made inuasion into the maine Ile of Britaine
afterwards, as occasion was offred. In the British toong they are
called Pightiaid, that is Pightians, and so likewise were they called
in the Scotish, and in their owne toong. Now will we shew what chanced
in this Ile, during the time of the foresaid Marius his supposed
reigne, as is found in the Romane histories.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Iulius Agricola is deputed by Vespasian to gouerne Britaine, he
inuadeth the Ile of Anglesey, the inhabitants yeeld vp them selues,
the commendable gouernement of Agricola, his worthie practises to
traine the Britains to ciuilitie, his exploits fortunatelie atchiued
against diuerse people, as the Irish, &c._


After Iulius Frontinus, the emperor Vespasian sent Iulius Agricola to
[Sidenote: Iulius Agricola lieutenant.]
succéed in the gouernement of Britaine, who comming ouer about the
midst of summer, found the men of warre thorough want of a lieutenant
negligent inough, so those that looking for no trouble, thought
[Sidenote: _Cor. Tacit in uit. Agr._]
themselues out of all danger, where the enimies neuerthelesse watched
[Sidenote: The first yéere of Agricola his gouernment.]
vpon the next occasion to worke some displeasure, and were readie
on ech hand to mooue rebellion, For the people called Ordouices,
that inhabited in the countrie of Chesshire, Lancashire and part of
Shropshire, had latelie before ouerthrowne, and in maner vtterlie
destroied a wing of such horssemen as soiourned in their parties, by
reason whereof all the prouince was brought almost into an assured
hope to recouer libertie.

Agricola vpon his comming ouer, though summer was now halfe past, and
that the souldiers lodging here & there abroad in the countrie, were
more disposed to take rest, than to set forward into the field
against the enimies, determined yet to resist the present danger: and
therewith assembling the men of warre of the Romans, and such other
aids as he might make, he inuaded their countrie that had done this
foresaid displeasure, and slue the most part of all the inhabitants
thereof. Not thus contented (for that he thought good to follow the
steps of fauourable fortune, and knowing that as the begining proued,
so would the whole sequele of his affaires by likelihood come to
passe) he purposed to make a full conquest of the Ile of Anglesey,
[Sidenote: The Ile of Anglesey.]
from the conquest wherof the Romane lieutenant Paulinus was called
backe by the rebellion of other of the Britains, as before ye haue

But whereas he wanted ships for the furnishing of his enterprise, his
wit and policie found a shift to supplie that defect: for choosing out
a piked number of such Britains as he had there with him in aid, which
knew the foords and shallow places of the streames there, and withall
were verie skilfull in swimming (as the maner of the countrie then
was) he appointed them to passe ouer on the sudden into the Ile,
onelie with their horsses, armor, and weapon: which enterprise they so
spéedilie, and with so good successe atchiued, that the inhabitants
much amazed with that dooing (which looked for a nauie of ships to
haue transported ouer their enimies by sea, and therefore watched
on the coast) began to thinke that nothing was able to be defended
against such kind of warriors that got ouer into the Ile after such
sort and maner.

[Sidenote: Anglesey yéelded to Agricola.]
And therefore making sute for peace, they deliuered the Ile into
the hands of Agricola, whose fame by these victories dailie much
increased, as of one that tooke pleasure in trauell, and attempting to
atchiue dangerous enterprises, in stead whereof his predecessors had
delighted, to shew the maiesties of their office by vaine brags,
statelie ports, and ambitious pomps. For Agricola turned not the
prosperous successe of his procéedings into vanitie, but rather with
neglecting his fame, increased it to the vttermost, among them that
iudged what hope was to be looked for of things by him to be atchiued,
which with silence kept secret these his so woorthie dooings.

Moreouer, perceiuing the nature of the people in this Ile of Britaine,
and sufficientlie taught by other mens example, that armor should
little auaile where iniuries followed to the disquieting of the
[Sidenote: Agricola his good gouernment.]
people, he thought best to take away and remooue all occasions of
warre. And first beginning with himselfe and his souldiers, tooke
order for a reformation to be had in his owne houshold, yéelding
nothing to fauor, but altogither in respect of vertue, accounting them
most faithfull which therein most excelled. He sought to know all
things, but not to doo otherwise than reason mooued, pardoning small
faults, and sharpelie punishing great and heinous offenses, neither
yet deliting alwaies in punishment, but oftentimes in repentance of
the offendor. Exactions and tributes he lessened, qualifieng the same
by reasonable equitie. And thus in reforming the state of things, he
wan him great praise in time of peace, the which either by negligence
or sufferance of the former lieutenants, was euer feared, and
accounted woorse than open warre. This was his practise in the winter
time of his first yéere.

[Sidenote: His diligence.]
But when summer was come, he assembled his armie, and leading
foorth the same, trained his souldiers in all honest warlike
discipline, commending the good, and reforming the bad and vnrulie.
He himselfe to giue example, tooke vpon him all dangers that came to
hand, and suffered not the enimies to liue in rest, but wasted their
countries with sudden inuasions. And when he had sufficientlie
chastised them, and put them in feare by such manner of dealing, he
spared them, that they might againe conceiue some hope of peace.
By which meanes manie countries which vnto those daies had kept
themselues out of bondage, laid rancor aside, and deliuered pledges,
and further were contented to suffer castels to be builded within
them, and to be kept with garrisons, so that no part of Britaine was
frée from the Romane power, but stood still in danger to be brought
vnder more and more.

[Sidenote: The second yéere of Agricola his gouernment.]
In the winter following, Agricola tooke paines to reduce the
Britains from their rude manners and customs, vnto a more ciuill sort
and trade of liuing, that changing their naturall fiercenesse and
[Sidenote: The woorthie practises of Agricola to traine the Britains
to ciuilitie.]
apt disposition to warre, they might through tasting pleasures be
so inured therewith, that they should desire to liue in rest and
quietnesse: and therefore he exhorted them priuilie, and holpe them
publikelie to build temples, common halls where plées of law might be
kept, and other houses, commending them that were diligent in such
dooings, and blaming them that were negligent, so that of necessitie
they were driuen to striue who should preuent ech other in ciuilitie.
He also procured that noble mens sonnes should learne the liberall
sciences, and praised the nature of the Britains more than the people
of Gallia, bicause they studied to atteine to the knowledge of the
Romane eloquence. By which meanes the Britains in short time were
brought to the vse of good and commendable manners, and sorted
themselues to go in comelie apparell after the Romane fashion, and
by little and little fell to accustome themselues to fine fare and
delicate pleasures, the readie prouokers of vices, as to walke in
galleries, to wash themselues in bathes, to vse banketting, and such
like, which amongst the vnskilfull was called humanitie or courtesie,
but in verie deed it might be accounted a part of thraldome and
seruitude, namelie being too excessiuelie vsed.

[Sidenote: The third yéere.]
In the third yéere of Agricola his gouernment in Britaine, he
inuaded the north parts thereof (vnknowne till those daies of the
Romans) being the same where the Scots now inhabit: for he
[Sidenote: The water of Tay.]
wasted the countrie vnto the water of Tay, in such wise putting the
inhabitants in feare, that they durst not once set vpon his armie,
though it were so that the same was verie sore disquieted and vexed
by tempest and rage of weather. Wherevpon finding no great let or
hinderance by the enimies, he builded certeine castels and fortresses,
which he placed in such conuenient stéeds, that they greatlie annoied
his aduersaries, and were so able to be defended, that there was none
of those castels which he builded, either woon by force out of the
Romans hands, or giuen ouer by composition, for feare to be taken: so
that the same beeing furnished with competent numbers of men of warre,
were safelie kept from the enimies, the which were dailie vexed by the
often issues made foorth by the souldiers that laie thus in garrison
within them: so that where in times past the said enimies would
recouer their losses susteined in summer by the winters aduantage, now
they were put to the woorse, and kept backe as well in the winter as
in the summer.

[Sidenote: The fourth yéere of Agricola his gouernment. Clota
In the fourth summer, after that Agricola was appointed vnto the
rule of this land, he went about to bring vnder subiection those
people, the which before time he had by incursions and forreies sore
vexed and disquieted: and therevpon comming to the waters of Clide and
Loughleuen, he built certeine fortresses to defend the passages and
entries there, driuing the enimies beyond the same waters, as it had
béene into a new Iland.

[Sidenote: The fift yéere.]
In the fift summer, Agricola causing his ships to be brought
about, and appointing them to arriue on the north coasts of Scotland,
he passed with his armie ouer the riuer of Clide; and subdued such
people as inhabited those further parts of Scotland, which till those
daies had not beene discouered by the Romans. And bicause he thought
it should serue well to purpose, for some conquest to be made of
Ireland, if that part of Scotland which bordereth on the Irish seas
might be kept in due obedience, he placed garrisons of souldiers
in those parties, in hope verelie vpon occasion to passe ouer into
Ireland, and for the more easie aduancement of his purpose therein, he
interteined with honourable prouision one of the kings of Ireland,
[Sidenote: An Irish king expelled out of his countrie.]
which by ciuill discord was expelled and driuen out of his countrie.
In déed Agricola perceiued, that with one legion of souldiers, and
a small aid of other men of warre it should be an easie matter to
conquer Ireland, and to bring it vnder the dominion of the Romans:
which enterprise he iudged verie necessarie to be exploited, for
better kéeping of the Britains in obedience, if they should sée the
iurisdiction of the Romans euerie where extended, and the libertie of
their neighbours suppressed.

[Sidenote: The sixt yéere of Agricola his government.]
In the sixt summer of Agricola his gouernment, he proceeded in
subduing the furthermost parts of Scotland northwards, causing his
nauie to kéepe course against him by the coast as he marched foorth
by land, so that the Britains perceiuing how the secret hauens and
créekes of their countries were now discouered, and that all hope of
refuge was in maner cut off from them, were in maruellous feare. On
the other part the Romans were sore troubled with the rough mounteins
and craggie rocks, by the which they were constreined to passe beside
the dangerous riuers, lakes, woods, streicts, and other combersome
waies and passages.

The danger also of them that were in the ships by sea was not small,
by reason of winds and tempests, and high spring tides, which tossed
and turmoiled their vessels verie cruellie: but by the painfull
diligence of them that had béene brought vp and inured with continuall
trauell and hardnesse, all those discommodities were ouercome to their
great reioising, when they met and fell in talke of their passed
perils. For oftentimes the armie by land incamped so by the shore,
that those which kept the sea came on land to make merrie in the
campe, and then ech one would recount to others the aduentures that
had happened, as the manner is in semblable cases.

       *       *       *       *       *

_The Britains of Calenderwood assalt the Romans upon aduantage,
bloudie battels fought betwixt them, great numbers slaine on both
sides, the villanous dealing of certeine Dutch souldiers against their
capteins and fellowes in armes, the miserie that they were driven vnto
by famine to eate one another, a sharpe conflict betweene the Romans
and Britains, with the losse of manie a mans life, and effusion of
much bloud_.


[Sidenote: Calenderwood.]
The Britains that inhabited in those daies about the parts of
Calenderwood, perceiuing in what danger they were to be vtterlie
subdued, assembled themselues togither, in purpose to trie the fortune
of battell: whereof Agricola being aduertised, marched foorth with his
armie diuided in three battels, so that the enimies doubting to trie
the matter in open field, espied their time in the night, and with all
their whole puissance set vpon one of the Romane legions, which they
knew to be most féeble and weake, trusting by a camisado to distresse
the same: and first sleaing the watch, they entred the campe, where
the said legion laie, and finding the souldiers in great disorder,
betwixt sléepe and feare, began the fight euen within the campe.

Agricola had knowledge of their purposed intent, and therefore with
all speed hasted foorth to come to the succours of his people, sending
first his light horssemen, and certeine light armed footmen to assaile
the enimies on their backs, and shortlie after approched with his
whole puissance, so that the Romane standards beginning to appéere in
sight by the light of the daie that then began to spring, the Britains
were sore discouraged, and the Romans renewing their force, fiercelie
preassed vpon them, so that euen in the entrie of the campe, there was
a sore conflict, till at length the Britains were put to flight and
chased, so that if the mareshes and woods had not saued them from the
pursute of the Romans, there had beene an end made of the whole warre
euen by that one daies worke. But the Britains escaping as well as
they might, and reputing the victorie to haue chanced not by the
valiancie of the Romane soldiers, but by occasion, and the prudent
policie of their capteine, were nothing abashed with that their
present losse, but prepared to put their youth againe into armour: and
therevpon they remooued their wiues and children into safe places, and
then assembling the chiefest gouernours togither, concluded a league
amongst themselues, ech to aid other, confirming their articles with
dooing of sacrifice (as the manner in those daies was.)

[Sidenote: The seuenth yéere.]
The same summer, a band of such Dutch or Germaine souldiers as had
béene leuied in Germanie & sent ouer into Britaine to the aid of
the Romans, attempted a great and woonderfull act, in sleaing their
capteine, and such other of the Romane souldiers which were appointed
to haue the training and leading of them, as officers and instructors
to them in the feats of warre: and when they had committed that
murther, they got into thrée pinesses, and became rouers on the coasts
of Britaine, and incountring with diuerse of the Britains that were
readie to defend their countrie from spoile, oftentimes they got the
vpper hand of them, and now and then they were chased awaie, insomuch
that in the end they were brought to such extremitie for want of
vittels, that they did eate such amongst them as were the weakest,
and after, such as the lot touched, being indifferentlie cast amongst
them: and so being caried about the coasts of Britaine, & losing their
vessels through want of skill to gouerne them, they were reputed for
robbers, and therevpon were apprehended, first by the Suabeners, and
shortlie after by the Frizers, the which sold diuerse of them to the
Romans and other, whereby the true vnderstanding of their aduentures
came certeinlie to light.

[Sidenote: The eight yéere of Agricola his gouernment.]
In summer next following, Agricola with his armie came to the
mounteine of Granziben, where he vnderstood that his enimies were
incamped, to the number of 30 thousand and aboue, and dailie there
came to them more companie of the British youth, and such aged persons
also as were lustie and in strength, able to weld weapon and beare
[Sidenote: Galgagus whome the Scots name Gald and will néeds haue
him a Scotish man.]
armour. Amongst the capteins the chiefest was one Galgagus whom the
Scotish chronicles name Gald. This man as chiefteine and head capteine
of all the Britains there assembled, made to them a pithie oration, to
incourage them to fight manfullie, and likewise did Agricola to his
people: which being ended, the armies on both sides were put in order
of battell. Agricola placed 8 thousand footmen of strangers which he
had there in aid with him in the midst, appointing thrée thousand
horssemen to stand on the sides of them as wings. The Romane legions
stood at their backs in stéed of a bulworke. The Britains were
imbattelled in such order, that their fore ward stood in the plaine
ground, and the other on the side of an hill, as though they had risen
on heigth one ranke aboue another. The midst of the field was
[Sidenote: _Corn. Tacit._]
couered with their charrets and horssemen. Agricola doubting by the
huge multitude of enimies, least his people should be assailed not
onlie afront, but also vpon euerie side the battels, he caused the
ranks so to place themselues, as their battels might stretch farre
further in bredth than otherwise the order of warre required: but he
tooke this to be a good remedie against such inconuenience as might
haue followed, if the enimie by the narrownesse of the fronts of his
battels should haue hemmed them in on ech side.

This done, and hauing conceiued good hope of victorie, he alighted on
foot, and putting his horsse from him, he stood before the standards
as one not caring for anie danger that might happen. At the first they
bestowed their shot and darts fréelie on both sides. The Britains
aswell with constant manhood, as skilfull practise, with broad swords
and little round bucklers auoided and beat from them the arrowes and
darts that came from their enimies, and therewithall paid them home
againe with their shot and darts, so that the Romans were néere hand
oppressed therewith, bicause they came so thicke in their faces,
[Sidenote: Betaui. Congri.]
till at length Agricola caused thrée cohorts of Hollanders, & two of
Lukeners to presse forward, & ioine with them at hand-strokes, so as
the matter might come to be tried with the edge of the swoord, which
thing as to them (being inured with that kind of fight) it stood
greatlie with their aduantage, so to the Britains it was verie
dangerous, that were to defend themselues with their mightie huge
swoords and small bucklers. Also by reason their swoords were broad
at the ends, and pointlesse, they auailed little to hurt the armed
enimie. Wherevpon when the Hollanders came to ioine with them, they
made fowle worke in sleaing and wounding them in most horrible wise.

The horssemen also that made resistance they pulled from their
horsses, and began to clime the hill vpon the Britains. The other
bands desirous to match their fellowes in helping to atchiue the
[Sidenote: Hollanders.]
victorie, followed the Hollanders, and beat downe the Britains where
they might approch to them: manie were ouerrun and left halfe dead,
and some not once touched with anie weapon, were likewise ouerpressed,
such hast the Romans made to follow vpon the Britains. Whilest the
British horssemen fled, their charets ioined themselues with their
footmen, and restoring the battell, put the Romans in such feare, that
they were at a sudden stay: but the charets being troubled with prease
of enimies, & vnéeuennesse of the ground, they could not worke their
feat to anie purpose, neither had that fight anie resemblance of a
battell of horssemen, when ech one so encumbred other, that they had
no roome to stirre themselues. The charets oftentimes wanting their
guiders were caried awaie with the horsses, that being put in feare
with the noise and stur, ran hither and thither, bearing downe one
another, and whomsoeuer else they met withall.

Now the Britains that kept the top of the hils, and had not yet fought
at all, despising the small number of the Romans, began to come
downewards and to cast about, that they might set vpon the backs of
their enimies, in hope so to make an end of the battell, and to win
the victorie: but Agricola doubting no lesse, but that some such thing
would come to passe, had aforehand foreséene the danger, and hauing
reserued foure wings of horssemen for such sudden chances, sent them
foorth against those Britains, the which horssemen with full randon
charging vpon them as they rashlie came forwards, quicklie disordered
them and put them all to flight, and so that purposed deuise and
policie of the Britains turned to their owne hinderance. For their
horssemen by their capteins appointment trauersing ouerthwart by the
fronts of them that fought, set vpon that battell of the Britains
which they found before them. Then in those open and plaine places a
greeuous & heauie sight it was to behold, how they pursued, wounded,
and tooke their enimies: and as they were aduised of other to slea
those that they had before taken, to the end they might ouertake the
other, there was nothing but fléeing, taking, and chasing, slaughter,
spilling of bloud, scattering of weapons, grunting and groning of men
and horsses that lay on the ground, gasping for breath, & readie to

The Britains now and then as they saw their aduantage, namelie when
they approched néere to the woods, gathered themselues togither,
and set vpon the Romans as they followed vnaduisedlie, and further
(through ignorance of the places) than stood with their suertie,
insomuch that if Agricola had not prouided remedie, and sent foorth
mightie bands of light armed men both on foot and horssebacke to close
in the enimies, and also to beat the wood, some greater losse would
haue followed through too much boldnes of them that too rashlie
pursued vpon the Britains: who when they beheld the Romans thus to
follow them in whole troops and good order of battell, they slipt
awaie and tooke them to flight, ech one seeking to saue himselfe, and
kept not togither in plumps as before they had doone. The night made
an end of the chase which the Romans had followed till they were
[Sidenote: Ten thousand Britains slaine. Aulus Atticus slaine.]
throughlie wearied. There were slaine of the Britains that day 10000,
and of the Romans 340, among whom Aulus Atticus a capteine of one
of the cohorts or bands of footmen was one, who being mounted on
horssebacke (through his owne too much youthfull courage, and fierce
vnrulines of his horsse) was caried into the middle throng of his
enimies, and there slaine.

       *       *       *       *       *

_The lamentable distresse and pitifull perplexitie of the Britains
after their ouerthrow, Domitian enuieth Agricola the glorie of his
victories, he is subtilie depriued of his deputiship, and Cneus
Trebellius surrogated in his roome_.


The night insuing the foresaid ouerthrow of the Britains was spent of
[Sidenote: Britains, not Scots, neither yet Picts.]
the Romans in great ioy & gladnes for the victorie atchiued. But
among the Britains there was nothing else heard but mourning and
lamentation, both of men and women that were mingled togither, some
busie to beare away the wounded, to bind and dresse their hurts; other
calling for their sonnes, kinsfolkes and friends that were wanting.
Manie of them forsooke their houses, and in their desperate mood set
them on fire, and choosing foorth places for their better refuge and
safegard, foorthwith misliking of the same, left them and sought
others: herewith diuerse of them tooke counsell togither what they
were best to doo, one while they were in hope, an other while they
fainted, as people cast into vtter despaire: the beholding of their
wiues and children oftentimes mooued them to attempt some new
enterprise for the preseruation of their countrie and liberties. And
certeine it is that some of them slue their wiues and children, as
mooued thereto with a certeine fond regard of pitie to rid them out of
further miserie and danger of thraldome.

The next day the certeintie of the victorie more plainlie was
disclosed, for all was quiet about, and no noise heard anie where: the
houses appeared burning on ech side, and such as were sent foorth to
discouer the countrie into euerie part thereof, saw not a creature
stirring, for all the people were auoided and withdrawne a farre off.

When Agricola had thus ouerthrowne his enimies in a pitcht field at
the mountaine of Granziben, and that the countrie was quite rid of all
appearance of enimies: bicause the summer of this eight yéere of his
gouernement was now almost spent, he brought his armie into the
[Sidenote: _Hector Boet._]
confines of the Horrestians, which inhabited the countries now called
[Sidenote: _Cor. Tacitus_.]
Angus & Merne, and there intended to winter, and tooke hostages of
the people for assurance of their loialtie and subiection. This doone,
he appointed the admirall of the nauie to saile about the Ile,
[Sidenote: An hauen called Trutulensis, peraduenture Rutupensis.]
which accordinglie to his commission in that point receiued, luckilie
accomplished his enterprise, and brought the nauie about againe into
an hauen called Trutulensis.

In this meane time, whiles Iulius Agricola was thus occupied in
Britaine, both the emperour Vespasianus, and also his brother Titus
that succéeded him, departed this life, and Domitianus was elected
emperor, who hearing of such prosperous successe as Agricola had
against the Britains, did not so much reioise for the thing well
doone, as he enuied to consider what glorie and renowme should redound
to Agricola thereby, which he perceiued should much darken the glasse
of his fame, hauing a priuate person vnder him, who in woorthinesse of
noble exploits atchiued, farre excelled his dooings.

To find remedie therefore herein, he thought not good to vtter his
malice as yet, whilest Agricola remained in Britaine with an armie,
which so much fauoured him, and that with so good cause, sith by his
policie and noble conduct the same had obteined so manie victories,
so much honor, and such plentie of spoiles and booties. Wherevpon to
dissemble his intent, he appointed to reuoke him foorth of Britaine,
as it were to honor him, not onelie with deserued triumphs, but also
with the lieutenantship of Syria, which as then was void by the
[Sidenote: Cneus Trebellius alias Salustius Lucullus as some thinke.]
death of Aulius Rufus. Thus Agricola being countermanded home to Rome,
deliuered his prouince vnto his successor Cneus Trebellius, appointed
thereto by the emperour Domitianus, in good quiet and safegard.

¶ Thus may you sée in what state Britaine stood in the daies of king
Marius, of whome Tacitus maketh no mention at all. Some haue written,
that the citie of Chester was builded by this Marius, though other
(as before I haue said) thinke rather that it was the worke of
[Sidenote: _Fabian_.]
Ostorius Scapula their legat. Touching other the dooings of Agricola,
in the Scotish chronicle you maie find more at large set foorth:
for that which I haue written héere, is but to shew what in effect
Cornelius Tacitus writeth of that which Agricola did here in Britaine,
without making mention either of Scots or Picts, onelie naming them
Britains, Horrestians, and Calidoneans, who inhabited in those daies
a part of this Ile which now we call Scotland, the originall of which
countrie, and the inhabitants of the same, is greatlie controuersed
among writers; diuerse diuerslie descanting therevpon, some fetching
their reason from the etymon of the word which is Gréeke, some from
the opening of their ancestors as they find the same remaining in
records; other some from comparing antiquities togither, and aptlie
collecting the truth as néere as they can. But to omit them, and
returne to the continuation of our owne historie.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Of Coillus the sonne of Marius, his education in Rome, how long he
reigned: of Lucius his sonne and successor, what time he assumed
the gouernment of this land, he was an open professor of christian
religion, he and his familie are baptised, Britaine receiueth the
faith, 3 archbishops and 28 bishops at that time in this Iland,
Westminster church and S. Peters in Cornehill builded, diuers opinions
touching the time of Lucius his reigne, of his death, and when the
christian faith was receiued in this Iland_.


[Sidenote: COILLUS. 125.]
Coillus the sonne of Marius was after his fathers deceasse made
king of Britaine, in the yeare of our Lord 125. This Coillus or Coill
was brought vp in his youth amongst the Romans at Rome, where he spent
his time not vnprofitablie, but applied himselfe to learning & seruice
in the warres, by reason whereof he was much honored of the Romans,
and he likewise honored and loued them, so that he paied his tribute
truelie all the time of his reigne, and therefore liued in peace and
good quiet. He was also a prince of much bountie, and verie liberall,
whereby he obteined great loue both of his nobles and commons. Some
[Sidenote: Colchester built.]
saie, that he made the towne of Colchester in Essex, but others write,
that Coill which reigned next after Asclepiodotus was the first
founder of that towne, but by other it should séeme to be built long
before, being called Camelodunum. Finallie when this Coill had reigned
the space of 54 yeares, he departed this life at Yorke, leauing after
him a sonne named Lucius, which succéeded in the kingdome.

[Sidenote: LUCIUS.]
Lucius the sonne of Coillus, whose surname (as saith William
Harison) is not extant, began his reigne ouer the Britains about the
yeare of our Lord 180, as Fabian following the authoritie of Peter
Pictauiensis saith, although other writers seeme to disagrée in that
account, as by the same Fabian in the table before his booke partlie
appeareth, wherevnto Matthæus Westmonasteriensis affirmeth, that this
Lucius was borne in the yeare of our Lord 115, and was crowned king in
the yeare 124, as successor to his father Coillus, which died the same
yeare, being of great age yer the said Lucius was borne. It is noted
[Sidenote: 165.]
by antiquaries, that his entrance was in the 4132 of the world,
916 after the building of Rome, 220 after the comming of Cesar into
Britaine, and 165 after Christ, whose accounts I follow in this

This Lucius is highlie renowmed of the writers, for that he was the
first king of the Britains that receiued the faith of Iesus Christ:
for being inspired by the spirit of grace and truth, euen from the
beginning of his reigne, he somewhat leaned to the fauoring of
Christian religion, being moued with the manifest miracles which the
Christians dailie wrought in witnesse and proofe of their sound and
perfect doctrine. For euen from the daies of Ioseph of Arimathia and
his fellowes, or what other godlie men first taught the Britains the
gospell of our Sauiour there remained amongest the same Britains some
christians which ceased not to teach and preach the word of God most
sincerelie vnto them: but yet no king amongst them openlie professed
that religion, till at length this Lucius perceiuing not onelie some
of the Romane lieutenants in Britaine as Trebellius and Pertinax, with
others, to haue submitted themselues to that profession, but also the
emperour himselfe to begin to be fauorable to them that professed it,
he tooke occasion by their good example to giue eare more attentiuelie
vnto the gospell, and at length sent vnto Eleutherius bishop of Rome
two learned men of the British nation, Eluane and Meduine, requiring
him to send some such ministers as might instruct him and his people
in the true faith more plentifullie, and to baptise them according to
the rules of christian religion.

[Sidenote: Fol. 119. (*)]
¶ The reuerend father Iohn Iewell, sometime bishop of Salisburie,
writeth in his * replie vnto Hardings answer, that the said
Eleutherius, for generall order to be taken in the realme and churches
héere, wrote his aduice to Lucius in maner and forme following. "You
haue receiued in the kingdome of Britaine, by Gods mercie, both the
law and faith of Christ; ye haue both the new and the old testament,
out of the same through Gods grace, by the aduise of your realme make
a law, and by the same through Gods sufferance rule you your kingdome
of Britaine, for in that kingdome you are Gods vicar."

Herevpon were sent from the said Eleutherius two godlie learned men,
the one named Fugatius, and the other Damianus, the which baptised the
king with all his familie and people, and therewith remoued the
[Sidenote: Britaine receiueth the faith.]
worshipping of idols and false gods, and taught the right meane and
waie how to worship the true and immortall God. There were in those
daies within the bounds of Britaine 28 Flamines, & thrée Archflamines,
which were as bishops and archbishops, or superintendents of the
pagan or heathen religion, in whose place (they being remoued) were
instituted 28 bishops & thrée archbishops of the christian religion.
One of the which archbishops held his sée at London, another at Yorke,
[Sidenote: _Matth. West._]
and the third at Caerleon Arwiske in Glamorganshire. Vnto the
archbishop of London was subiect Cornewall, and all the middle part of
England, euen vnto Humber. To the archbishop of Yorke all the north
parts of Britaine from the riuer of Humber vnto the furthest partes
of Scotland. And to the archbishop of Caerleon was subiect all Wales,
within which countrie as then were seuen bishops, where now there are
but foure. The riuer of Seuern in those daies diuided Wales (then
called Cambria) from the other parts of Britaine. Thus Britaine
[Sidenote: Iosephus of Arimathia.]
partlie by the meanes of Ioseph of Arimathia (of whome ye haue heard
before) & partlie by the wholesome instructions & doctrines of
Fugatius and Damianus, was the first of all other regions that openlie
receiued the gospell, and continued most stedfast in that profession,
till the cruell furie of Dioclesian persecuted the same, in such sort,
that as well in Britaine as in all other places of the world, the
christian religion was in manner extinguished, and vtterlie destroied.

[Sidenote: _Polydor_. Westminster Church built.]
There be that affirme, how this Lucius should build the church
of saint Peter at Westminster, though manie attribute that act vnto
Sibert king of the east Saxons, and write how the place was then
ouergrowne with thornes and bushes, and thereof tooke the name, and
was called Thorney. They ad moreouer that Thomas archbishop of London
preached, read, and ministred the sacraments there to such as made
resort vnto him. Howbeit by the tables hanging in the reuestrie of
saint Paules at London, and also a table sometime hanging in saint
Peters church in Cornehill, it should séeme that the said church of
saint Peter in Cornehill was the same that Lucius builded. But herein
(saith Harison _anno mundi_ 4174) dooth lie a scruple. Sure Cornell
might soone be mistaken for Thorney, speciallie in such old records,
as time, age, & euill handling haue oftentimes defaced.

But howsoeuer the case standeth, truth it is, that Lucius reioising
much, in that he had brought his people to the perfect light and
vnderstanding of the true God, that they néeded not to be deceiued
anie longer with the craftie temptations and feigned miracles of
wicked spirits, he abolished all prophane worshippings of false
gods, and conuerted all such temples as had béene dedicated to their
seruice, vnto the vse of christian religion: and thus studieng onlie
how to aduance the glorie of the immortall God, and the knowledge of
his word, without seeking the vaine glorie of worldlie triumph, which
is got with slaughter and bloudshed of manie a giltlesse person, he
left his kingdome; though not inlarged with broder dominion than he
receiued it, yet greatlie augmented and inriched with quiet rest, good
ordinances, and (that which is more to be estéemed than all the rest)
adorned with Christes religion, and perfectlie instructed with his
[Sidenote: _Polydor. Fabian. Iohn Hard._]
most holie word and doctrine. He reigned (as some write) 21
yeares, though other affirme but twelue yeares. Againe, some testifie
that he reigned 77, others 54, and 43.

Moreouer here is to be noted, that if he procured the faith of Christ
to be planted within this realme in the time of Eleutherius the Romane
bishop, the same chanced in the daies of the emperour Marcus Aurelius
Antonius; and about the time that Lucius Aurelius Commodus was ioined
and made partaker of the empire with his father, which was seuen yéere
after the death of Lucius Aelius, Aurelius Verus, and in the 177 after
the birth of our Sauiour Iesus Christ, as by some chronologies is
easie to be collected. For Eleutherius began to gouerne the sée of
Rome in the yéere 169, according to the opinion of the most diligent
chronographers of our time, and gouerned fiftéene yeeres and thirtéene
[Sidenote: _Gal. Mon. Matth. West._]
daies. And yet there are that affirme, how Lucius died at
Glocester in the yéere of our Lord 156. Other say that he died in the
yere 201, and other 208. So that the truth of this historie is brought
into doubt by the discord of writers, concerning the time and other
circumstances, although they all agrée that in this kings daies the
christian faith was first by publike consent openlie receiued and
professed in this land, which as some affirme, should chance in the
[Sidenote: _Polydor_.]
twelfe yéere of his reigne, and in the yéere of our Lord 177.
Other iudge that it came to passe in the eight yeere of his regiment,
and in the yéere of our Lord 188, where other (as before is said)
[Sidenote: _Nauclerus_.]
alledge that it was in the yéere of the Lord 179. Nauclerus saith,
[Sidenote: _Hen. Herf._]
that this happened about the yeare of our Lord 156. And Henricus
de Herfordea supposeth, that it was in the yéere of our Lord 169, and
in the nintéenth yéere of the emperor Marcus Antonius Verus; and after
other, about the sixt yéere of the emperor Commodus.

But to conclude, king Lucius died without issue, by reason whereof
[Sidenote: _Fabian_.]
after his deceasse the Britains fell at variance, which continued
about the space of fiftéene yéeres (as Fabian thinketh) howbeit the
old English chronicle affirmeth, that the contention betwixt them
[Sidenote: _Caxton. Iohn Hard._]
remained fiftie yéeres, though Harding affirmeth but foure yéeres.
And thus much of the Britains, and their kings Coilus and Lucius. Now
it resteth to speake somewhat of the Romans which gouerned here in
the meane while. After that Agricola was called backe to Rome, the
Britains (and namelie those that inhabited beyond Tweed) partlie being
weakned of their former strength, and partlie in consideration of
their pledges, which they had deliuered to the Romans, remained in
peace certeine yéeres.

       *       *       *       *       *

_The Britains after the deceasse of Lucius (who died without issue)
rebell against the Romans, the emperor Adrian comming in his owne
person into Britaine appeaseth the broile, they go about to recouer
their libertie against the Romans, but are suppressed by Lollius the
Romane lieutenant; the vigilantnesse or wakefulnesie of Marcellus, and
his policie to keepe the souldiers waking, the Britains being ruled by
certeine meane gentlemen of Perhennis appointing doo falselie accuse
him to the emperor Commodus, he is mangled and murthered of his


In the meane time the Romane lieutenant Cneus Trebellius that
succéeded Iulius Agricola, could not foresee all things so preciselie
but that the souldiers waxing vnrulie by reason of long rest, fell
at variance among themselues, and would not in the end obey the
lieutenant, but disquieted the Britains beyond measure. Wherefore
the Britains perceiuing themselues sore oppressed with intollerable
bondage, and that dailie the same incresed, they conspired togither,
vpon hope to recouer libertie, and to defend their countrie by all
meanes possible, and herewith they tooke weapon in hand against the
Romans, and boldlie assailed them: but this they did yet warilie,
and so, that they might flie vnto the woods and bogs for refuge vpon
necessitie, according to the maner of their countrie. Herevpon diuers
slaughters were committed on both parties, and all the countrie was
now readie to rebell: whereof when the emperour Adrian was aduertised
from Trebellius the lieutenant, with all conuenient speed he passed
ouer into Britaine, and quieted all the Ile, vsing great humanitie
towards the inhabitants; and making small account of that part where
the Scots now inhabit, either bicause of the barrennesse thereof, or
for that by reason of the nature of the countrie he thought it would
be hard to be kept vnder subiection, he deuised to diuide it from the
[Sidenote: The wall of Adrian built. _Spartianus_.]
residue of Britaine, and so caused a wall to be made from the
mouth of Tine vnto the water of Eske, which wall contained in length
30 miles.

After this, the Britains bearing a malicious hatred towards the Romane
souldiers, and repining to be kept vnder the bond of seruitude,
eftsoones went about to recouer libertie againe. Whereof
[Sidenote: Lollius Vrbicus lieutenant.]
aduertisement being giuen, the emperour Pius Antoninus sent ouer
Lollius Vrbicus as lieutenant into Britaine, who by sundrie battels
striken, constreined the Britains to remaine in quiet, and causing
[Sidenote: _Julius Capitol_. An other wall built.]
those that inhabited in the north parts to remooue further off from
the confines of the Romane prouince, raised another wall beyond that
which the emperor Adrian had made, as is to be supposed, for the more
suertie of the Romane subiects against the inuasion of the enimies.
But yet Lollius did not so make an end of the warrs, but that the
Britains shortlie after attempted afresh, either to reduce their state
into libertie, or to bring the same into further danger.

[Sidenote: CALPHURNIUS AGRICOLA. Of the doings of this Calphurnius in
Britaine ye may read more in the Scotish chronicle. _Dion Cassius_.]
Wherevpon Marcus Antonius that succéeded Pius, sent Calphurnius
Agricola to succéed Lollius in the gouernement of Britaine, the which
easilie ouercame and subdued all his enimies. After this there chanced
some trouble in the daies of the emperour Commodus the son of Marcus
Antonius and his successor in the empire: for the Britans that dwelled
northwards, beyond Adrians wall, brake through the same, and spoiled
a great part of the countrie, against whom the Romane lieutenant for
that time being come foorth, gaue them battell: but both he and the
Romane souldiers that were with him, were beaten downe and slaine.

[Sidenote: Vlpius Marcellus lieutenant.]
With which newes Commodus being sore amazed, sent against
the Britains one Vlpius Marcellus, a man of great diligence and
temperance, but therewith rough and nothing gentle. He vsed the same
kind of diet that the common souldiers did vse. He was a capteine much
watchfull, as one contented with verie little sléepe, and desirous to
haue his souldiers also vigilant and carefull to kéepe sure watch in
the night season. Euerie euening he would write twelue tables, such as
they vsed to make on the lind trée, and deliuering them to one of his
seruants, appointed him to beare them at seuerall houres of the night
to sundrie souldiers, whereby supposing that their generall was still
watching and not gone to bed, they might be in doubt to sléepe.

And although of nature he could well absteine from sléepe, yet to be
the better able to forbeare it, he vsed a maruellous spare kind of
diet: for to the end that he would not fill himselfe too much with
bread, he would eat none but such as was brought to him from Rome, so
that more than necessitie compelled him he could not eat, by reason
that the stalenesse tooke awaie the pleasant tast thereof, and lesse
prouoked his appetite. He was a maruellous contemner of monie, so that
bribes might not mooue him to doo otherwise than dutie required. This
Marcellus being of such disposition, sore afflicted the Britains, and
put them oftentimes to great losses: through fame wherof, C[=o]modus
enuieng his renowme was after in mind to make him away, but yet spared
him for a further purpose, and suffered him to depart.

[Sidenote: Perhennis capteine of the emperours gard.]
After he was remooued from the gouernment of Britaine, one
Perhennis capteine of the emperors gard (or pretorian souldiers
as they were then called) bearing all the rule vnder the emperor
Commodus, appointed certeine gentlemen of meane calling to gouerne the
armie in Britaine. Which fond substituting of such petie officers
to ouersée and ouerrule the people, was to them an occasion of
hartgrudge, and to him a meanes of finall mischéefe: both which it
is likelie he might haue auoided, had he béene prouident in his
[Sidenote: _Aelius Lampridius_.]
deputation. For the souldiers in the same armie grudging and
repining to be gouerned by men of base degree, in respect of those
that had borne rule ouer them before, being honorable personages, as
senators, and of the consular dignitie, they fell at square among
themselues, and about fiftéene hundred of them departed towards Rome
to exhibit their complaint against Perhennis: for whatsoeuer was
amisse, the blame was still laid to him. They passed foorth without
impeachment at all, and comming to Rome, the emperour himselfe came
foorth to vnderstand what they meant by this their comming in such
sort from the place where they were appointed to serue. Their answer
was, that they were come to informe him of the treason which Perhennis
had deuised to his destruction, that he might make his son emperor. To
the which accusation when Commodus too lightlie gaue eare, & beléeued
it to be true, namelie, through the setting on of one Cleander,
who hated Perhennis, for that he brideled him from dooing diuerse
vnlawfull acts, which he went about vpon a wilfull mind (without all
reason and modestie) to practise; the matter was so handled in the
end, that Perhennis was deliuered to the souldiers, who cruellie
mangled him, and presentlie put him to a pitifull death.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Pertinax is sent as lieutenant into Britaine, he is in danger to be
slaine of the souldiers, he riddeth himselfe of that perilous office:
Albinus with an armie of Britains fighteth against Seuerus and his
power neere to Lions, Seuerus is slaine in a conflict against the
Picts, Geta and Bassianus two brethren make mutuall warre for the
regiment of the land, the one is slaine, the other ruleth_.


[Sidenote: Pertinax lieutenant of Britaine.]
Now will we saie somewhat of the tumults in Britaine. It was
thought néedfull to send some sufficient capteine of autoritie
thither; and therefore was one Pertinax that had béene consull and
ruler ouer foure seuerall consular prouinces, appointed by Commodus
to go as lieutenant into that Ile, both for that he was thought a man
most méet for such a charge, and also to satisfie his credit, for that
he had béene discharged by Perhennis of bearing anie rule, and sent
home into Liguria where he was borne, and there appointed to remaine.
This Pertinax comming into Britaine, pacified the armie, but not
[Sidenote: The lieutenant in danger.]
without danger to haue béene slaine by a mutinie raised by one of
the legions: for he was stricken downe, and left for dead among the
slaine carcasses. But he woorthilie reuenged himselfe of this iniurie.
At length, hauing chastised the rebels, and brought the Ile into
méetelie good quiet, he sued and obteined to be discharged of that
roome, because as he alledged, the souldiers could not brooke him,
for that he kept them in dutifull obedience, by correcting such as
offended the lawes of armes.

Then was Clodius Albinus appointed to haue the rule of the Romane
armie in Britaine: whose destruction when Seuerus the emperour sought,
Albinus perceiued it quicklie: and therefore choosing foorth a great
power of Britains, passed with the same ouer into France to encounter
with Seuerus, who was come thither towards him, so that néere to the
citie of Lions they ioined in battell and fought right sore, in so
much that Seuerus was at point to haue receiued the ouerthrow by the
high prowesse and manhood of the Britains: but yet in the end Albinus
lost the field, and was slaine. Then Heraclitus as lieutenant began to
gouerne Britaine (as writeth Spartianus) being sent thither by Seuerus
for that purpose before. And such was the state of this Ile about the
yeare of our Lord 195. In which season, because that king Lucius was
dead, and had left no issue to succéed him, the Britains (as before ye
haue heard) were at variance amongst themselues, and so continued till
the comming of Seuerus, whome the British chronographers affirme to
reigne as king in this Ile, & that by right of succession in bloud, as
descended of Androgeus the Britaine, which went to Rome with Iulius
Cesar, as before ye haue heard.

[Sidenote: SEUERUS]
This Seuerus as then emperour of Rome, began to rule this Ile (as
authors affirme) in the yeare of our Lord 207, and gouerned the same 4
yeares and od moneths. At length hearing that one Fulgentius as then
a leader of the Picts was entred into the borders of his countrie on
this side Durham, he raised an host of Britains and Romans, with
the which he marched towards his enimies: and méeting with the said
Fulgentius in a place néere vnto Yorke, in the end after sore fight
Seuerus was slaine, when he had ruled this land for the space almost
of fiue yeares, as before is said, and was after buried at Yorke,
leauing behind him two sonnes, the one named Geta, and the other
Bassianus. This Bassianus being borne of a British woman, succéeded
his father in the gouernement of Britaine, in the yeare of the
incarnation of our Lord 211. The Romans would haue had Geta created
king of Britaine, bearing more fauour to him because he had a Romane
ladie to his mother: but the Britains moued with the like respect,
held with Bassianus. And thervpon warre was raised betwixt the two
brethren, who comming to trie their quarrell by battell, Geta was
slaine, and Bassianus with aid of the Britains remained victor, and
so continued king, till at length he was slaine by one Carausius a
Britaine, borne but of low birth, howbeit right valiant in armes, and
therefore well estéemed. In somuch that obteining of the senat of Rome
the kéeping of the coasts of Britaine, that he might defend the same
from the malice of strangers, as Picts and others, he drew to him a
great number of souldiers and speciallie of Britains, to whome he
promised that if they would make him king, he would cléerelie deliuer
them from the oppression of the Roman seruitude. Wherevpon the
Britains rebelling against Bassianus, ioined themselues to Carausius,
who by their support vanquished and slue the said Bassianus, after he
had reigned 6 or (as some affirme) 30 yeares.

¶ Thus farre out of the English and British writers, the which how
farre they varie from likelihood of truth, you shall heare in the next
chapter what the approued historiographers, Gréekes and Latines,
[Sidenote: _Herodianus_.]
writing of these matters, haue recorded.

       *       *       *       *       *

_The ambitious mind of the old emperour Seuerus, he arriueth in
Britaine with a mightie power to suppresse the rebellious Britains,
the emperours politike prouision for his souldiers in the fens and
bogs: the agilitie of the Britains, their nimblenesse, the painting
of their bodies with diuerse colours, their furniture, their great
sufferance of hunger, cold, &c: diuerse conflicts betweene the Romans
and the Britains, their subtile traines to deceiue their enimies, the
Romans pitifullie distressed, Seuerus constreineth the Caledonians
to conclude a league with him; he falleth sicke, his owne sonne
practiseth to make him away: the Britains begin a new rebellion, the
cruell commandement of Seuerus to kill and slea all that came to
hand without exception, his age, his death, and sepulchre: Bassianus
ambitiouslie vsurpeth the whole regiment, he killeth his brother Geta,
and is slaine himselfe by one of his owne souldiers_.


The emperour Seuerus receiuing aduertisment from the lieutenant
of Britaine, that the people there mooued rebellion, & wasted the
countrie with roads and forraies, so that it was néedful to haue the
prince himselfe to come thither with a great power to resist the
enimies, he of an ambitious mind reioised not a little for those
newes, bicause he saw occasion offered to aduance his renowne and
fame with increase of new victories now in the west, after so manie
triumphs purchased and got by him in the east and north parts of the
world. Héerevpon though he was of great age, yet the desire that he
had still to win honour, caused him to take in hand to make a iournie
into this land, and so being furnished of all things necessarie, he
set forwards, being carried for the more part in a litter for his more
ease: for that beside his féeblenesse of age, he was also troubled
with the gout. He tooke with him his two sonnes, Antoninus
[Sidenote: Antoninus and Geta.]
Bassianus and Geta, vpon purpose as was thought, to auoid occasions
of such inconuenience as he perceiued might grow by discord mooued
betwixt them through flatterers and malicious sycophants, which sought
to set them at variance: which to bring to passe, he perceiued there
should want no meane whilest they continued in Rome, amidst such
pleasures & idle pastimes as were dailie there frequented: and
therefore he caused them to attend him in this iournie into Britaine,
that they might learne to liue soberlie, and after the manner of men
of warre.

[Sidenote: The emperor Seuerus arriueth in Britaine.]
Seuerus being thus on his iournie towards Britaine, staied not by
the waie, but with all diligence sped him foorth, and passing the
sea verie swiftlie, entred this Ile, and assembled a mightie power
togither, meaning to assaile his enimies, and to pursue the warre
against them to the vttermost. The Britains greatlie amazed with this
sudden arriuall of the emperour, and hearing that such preparation was
made against them, sent ambassadours to him to intreat of peace, and
to excuse their rebellious dooings. But Seuerus delaieng time for
answere, as he that was desirous to atchiue some high enterprise
against the Britains, for the which he might deserue the surname of
Britannicus, which he greatlie coueted, still was busie to prepare all
things necessarie for the warre; and namelie, caused a great number
of bridges to be made to lay ouer the bogs and mareshes, so that his
souldiers might haue place to stand vpon, and not to be incumbered for
lacke of firme ground when they should cope with their enimies: for
[Sidenote: _Herodianus_.]
the more part of Britaine in those daies (as Herodianus writeth) was
full of fens & maresh ground, by reason of the often flowings and
[Sidenote: He meaneth of the north Britains or sauage Britains as we
may call them.]
washings of the sea tides: by the which maresh grounds the enimies
being thereto accustomed, would run and swim in the waters, and wade
vp to the middle at their pleasure, going for the more part naked, so
that they passed not on the mud and mires, for they knew not the vse
or wearing cloths, but ware hoopes of iron about their middles and
necks, esteeming the same as an ornament token of riches, as other
barbarous people did gold.

Moreouer they marked, or (as it were) painted their bodies in diuerse
sorts and with sundrie shapes and figures of beasts and fowles, and
therefore they vsed not to weare anie garments, that such painting of
their bodies might the more apparantlie be séene, which they estéemed
a great brauerie.

They were as the same Herodianus writeth, a people giuen much to war,
[Sidenote: The furniture of the sauage Britains.]
and delighted in slaughter and bloudshed, vsing none other weapons
or armour but a slender buckler, a iaueline, and a swoord tied to
their naked bodies: as for headpéece or habergeon, they estéemed not,
bicause they thought the same should be an hinderance to them when
they should passe ouer anie maresh, or be driuen to swim anie waters,
or flée to the bogs.

Moreouer, to suffer hunger, cold, and trauell, they were so vsed and
inured therewith, that they would not passe to lie in the bogs and
mires couered vp to the chin, without caring for meate for the space
of diuerse daies togither: and in the woods they would liue vpon
roots and barks of trées. Also they vsed to prepare for themselues a
certeine kind of meate, of the which if they receiued but so much as
amounted to the quantitie of a beane, they would thinke themselues
satisfied, and féele neither hunger nor thirst. The one halfe of
the Ile or little lesse was subiect vnto the Romans, the other was
gouerned of themselues, the people for the most part hauing the rule
in their hands.

Seuerus therefore meaning to subdue the whole, and vnderstanding their
nature, and the manner of their making warre, prouided him selfe of
all things expedient for the annoiance of them and helpe of his owne
souldiers, and appointing his sonne Geta to remaine in that part of
the Ile which was subiect to the Romans, he tooke with him his other
sonne Antoninus, and with his armie marched foorth, and entred into
the confines of the enimies, and there began to waste and forrey
the countrie, whereby there insued diuerse conflicts and skirmishes
betwixt the Romans and the inhabitants, the victorie still remaining
on the Romans side: but the enimies easilie escaped without anie great
losse vnto the woods, mountains, bogs, and such other places of refuge
as they knew to be at hand, whither the Romans durst not follow, nor
once approch, for feare to be intrapped and inclosed by the Britains
that were readie to returne and assaile their enimies vpon euerie
occasion of aduantage that might be offered.

This maner of dealing sore troubled the Romans, and so hindered them
[Sidenote: _Dion Cassius_.]
in their procéedings, that no spéedie end could be made of that
warre. The Britains would oftentimes of purpose laie their cattell, as
oxen, kine, shéepe, and such like, in places conuenient, to be as a
stale to the Romans; and when the Romans should make to them to fetch
the same awaie, being distant from the residue of the armie a good
space, they would fall vpon them and distresse them. Beside this, the
Romans were much annoied with the vnwholesomnesse of the waters which
they were forced to drinke, and if they chanced to straie abroad, they
were snapped vp by ambushes which the Caledonians laid for them, and
when they were so féeble that they could not through want of strength
kéepe pace with their fellowes as they marched in order of battell,
they were slaine by their owne fellowes, least they should be left
behind for a prey to the enimies. Héereby there died in this iournie
of the Romane armie, at the point of fiftie thousand men: but yet
would not Seuerus returne, till he had gone through the whole Ile,
and so came to the vttermost parts of all the countrie now called
Scotland, and at last backe againe to the other part of the Ile
subiect to the Romans, the inhabitants whereof are named (by Dion
Cassius) _Meatæ_. But first he forced the other, whom the same Dion
nameth Caledonij, to conclude a league with him, vpon such conditions,
as they were compelled to depart with no small portion of the
countrie, and to deliuer vnto him their armour and weapons.

In the meane time, the emperour Seuerus being worne with age fell
sicke, so that he was constreined to abide at home within that part of
the Ile which obeied the Romans, and to appoint his sonne Antoninus
to take charge of the armie abroad. But Antoninus not regarding the
enimies, attempted little or nothing against them, but sought waies
how to win the fauour of the souldiers and men of warre, that after
his fathers death (for which he dailie looked) he might haue their aid
and assistance to be admitted emperour in his place. Now when he saw
that his father bare out his sicknesse longer time than he would haue
wished, he practised with physicians and other of his fathers seruants
to dispatch him by one meane or other.

Whilest Antoninus thus negligentlie looked to his charge, the Britains
began a new rebellion, not onlie those that were latelie ioined in
league with the emperour, but the other also which were subjects to
the Romane empire. Seuerus tooke such displeasure, that he called
togither the souldiers, and commanded them to inuade the countrie, and
to kill all such as they might méet within anie place without respect,
and that his cruell commandement he expressed in these verses taken
out of Homer:
[Sidenote: _Iliados. 3_.]

  Nemo manus fugiat vestras, cædémque cruentam,
  Non foetus grauida mater quern gessit in aluo
  Horrendam effugiat cædem.

But while he was thus disquieted with the rebellion of the Britains,
and the disloiall practises of his sonne Antoninus, which to him were
not vnknowne, (for the wicked sonne had by diuers attempts discouered
his traitorous and vnnaturall meanings) at length, rather through
[Sidenote: Heriodianus. Dion Cassius. Eutropius. Dion Cassius.]
sorrow and griefe, than by force of sicknesse, he wasted awaie, and
departed this life at Yorke, the third daie before the nones of
Februarie, after he had gouerned the empire by the space of 17 yeares,
8 moneths, & 33 daies. He liued 65 yeres, 9 moneths, & 13 daies: he
was borne the third ides of April. By that which before is recited out
of Herodian and Dion Cassius, of the maners & vsages of those people,
against whome Seuerus held warre here in Britaine, it maie be
coniectured, that they were the Picts, the which possessed in those
daies a great part of Scotland, and with continuall incursions and
[Sidenote: Eutropius. Orosius.]
rodes wasted and destroyed the borders of those countries which
were subiect to the Romans. To kéepe them backe therefore and to
represse their inuasions, Seuerus (as some write) either restored
[Sidenote: _Dion Cassius_.]
the former wall made by Adrian, or else newlie built an other
ouerthwart the Ile, from the east sea to the west, conteining in
[Sidenote: _Beda_.]
length 232 miles. This wall was not made of stone, but of turfe and
earth supported with stakes and piles of wood, and defended on the
[Sidenote: _Hector Boetius_]
backe with a déepe trench or ditch, and also fortified with
diuerse towers and turrets built & erected vpon the same wall or
rampire so néere togither, that the sound of trumpets being placed in
the same, might be heard betwixt, and so warning giuen from one to
another vpon the first descrieng of the enimies.

[Sidenote: _Polydorus. Herodianus_. 211.]
Seuerus being departed out of this life in the yere of our Lord
211, his son Antoninus otherwise called also Bassianus, would faine
haue vsurped the whole gouernment into his owne hands, attempting with
bribes and large promises to corrupt the minds of the souldiers: but
when he perceiued that his purpose would not forward as he wished in
that behalfe, he concluded a league with the enimies, and making peace
with them, returned backe towards Yorke, and came to his mother and
brother Geta, with whome he tooke order for the buriall of his father.
And first his bodie being burnt (as the maner was) the ashes were put
into a vessell of gold, and so conueied to Rome by the two brethren
and the empresse Iulia, who was mother to Geta the yonger brother,
and mother in law to the elder, Antoninus Bassianus, & by all meanes
possible sought to maintaine loue and concord betwixt the brethren,
which now at the first tooke vpon them to rule the empire equallie
togither. But the ambition of Bassianus was such, that finallie vpon
desire to haue the whole rule himselfe, he found meanes to dispatch
his brother Geta, breaking one daie into his chamber, and slaieng him
euen in his mothers lap, and so possessed the gouernment alone, till
at length he was slaine at Edessa a citie in Mesopotamia by one of his
owne souldiers, as he was about to vntrusse his points to doo the
[Sidenote: _Sextus Aurelius_.]
office of nature, after he had reigned the space of 6 yeares, as is
aforesaid. Where we are to note Gods judgment, prouiding that he which
had shed mans bloud, should also die by the sword.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Of Carausius an obscure Britaine, what countries he gaue the Picts,
and wherevpon, his death by Alectus his successor, the Romans foiled
by Asclepiodotus duke of Cornewall, whereof Walbrooke had the name,
the couetous practise of Carausius the usurper_.


[Sidenote: CARAUSIUS. 218.]
Carausius a Britan of vnknowne birth, as witnesseth the British
histories, after he had vanquisht & slaine Bassianus (as the same
histories make mention) was of the Britains made king and ruler ouer
them, in the yeare of our Lord 218, as Galfridus saith: but W.H.
[Sidenote: _Galfrid. Polychron. Fabian_.]
noteth it to be in the yeare 286. This Carausius either to haue the
aid & support of the Picts, as in the British historic is conteined,
either else to be at quietnesse with them, being not otherwise able
to resist them, gaue to them the countries in the south parts of
Scotland, which ioine to England on the east marshes, as Mers,
Louthian, and others.

[Sidenote: _Galfridus_.]
¶ But here is to be noted, that the British writers affirme, that
these Picts which were thus placed in the south parts of Scotland at
this time, were brought ouer out of Scithia by Fulgentius, to aid him
against Seuerus, and that after the death of Seuerus, and Fulgentius,
which both died of hurts receiued in the batell fought betwixt them at
Yorke: the Picts tooke part with Bassianus, and at length betraied him
in the battell which he fought against Carausius: for he corrupting
them by such subtile practises as he vsed, they turned to his side,
to the ouerthrow and vtter destruction of Bassianus: for the which
traitorous part they had those south countries of Scotland giuen
vnto them for their habitation. But by the Scotish writers it should
appeare, that those Picts which aided Fulgentius and also Carausius,
were the same that long before had inhabited the north parts of
Britaine, now called Scotland. But whatsoeuer they were, truth it is
(as the British histories record) that at length one Alectus was
sent from Rome by the senat with 3 legions of souldiers to subdue
Carausius, which he did, and slue him in the field, as the same
histories make mention, after he had reigned the space of 7, or 8,
yeares: and in the yeare of our saluation two hundred, ninetie, three.

[Sidenote: ALECTUS. Of whom our British histories doo write after their
maner. 293.]
Alectus in hauing vanquished and slaine Carausius tooke vpon him
the rule and gouernment of Britaine, in the yeare of our Lord 293.
This Alectus, when he had restored the land to the subiection of the
Romans, did vse great crueltie against such Britains as had maintained
the part of Carausius, by reason whereof he purchased much euill
will of the Britains, the which at length conspired against him, and
purposing to chase the Romans altogither out of their countrie, they
procured one Asclepiodotus (whome the British chronicles name duke
of Cornewall) to take vpon him as chiefe captaine that enterprise.
Wherevpon the same Asclepiodotus assembling a great armie, made such
sharpe warres on the Romans, that they being chased from place to
place, at length withdrew to the citie of London, and there held them
till Asclepiodotus came thither, and prouoked Alectus and his Romans
so much, that in the end they issued foorth of the citie, and gaue
battell to the Britans, in the which much people on both parts were
slaine, but the greatest number died on the Romans side: and amongst
others, Alectus himselfe was slaine, the residue of the Romans that
were left aliue, retired backe into the citie with a capteine of
theirs named Liuius Gallus, and defended themselues within the walles
for a time right valiantlie. Thus was Alectus slaine of the
[Sidenote: _Fabian. Matth. West._]
Britains, after he had reigned (as some suppose) about the terme of
six yeares, or (as some other write) thrée yeares.

[Sidenote: ASCLEPIODOTUS. _Gal. Mon. Matt. West._]
Asclepiodotus, duke of Cornewall, began his reigne ouer the
Britains in the yeare of our Lord 232. After he had vanquished the
Romans in battell, as before is recited, he laid his siege about the
citie of London, and finallie by knightlie force entred the same, and
slue the forenamed Liuius Gallus néere vnto a brooke, which in those
daies ran through the citie, & threw him into the same brooke: by
reason whereof long after it was called Gallus or Wallus brooke.
[Sidenote: Walbrooke.]
And at this present the streete where the same brooke did run, is
called Walbrooke.

Then after Asclepiodotus had ouercome all his enimies, he held this
land a certeine space in good rest and quiet, and ministred iustice
vprightlie, in rewarding the good, and punishing the euill. Till at
length, through slanderous toongs of malicious persons, discord was
raised betwixt the king and one Coill or Coilus, that was gouernour
of Colchester: the occasion whereof appeareth not by writers. But
whatsoeuer the matter was, there insued such hatred betwixt them, that
on both parts great armies were raised, and meeting in the field,
[Sidenote: Asclepiodotus slaine. _Matt. West._ hath x. years.]
they fought a sore and mightie battell, in the which Asclepiodotus was
slaine, after he had reigned 30 yeares. Thus haue Geffrey of Monmouth
and our common chroniclers written of Carausius, Alectus, and
Asclepiodotus, which gouerned héere in Britaine.

[Sidenote: _Eutropius_.]
But Eutropius the famous writer of the Romane histories, in the
acts of Dioclesian hath in effect these woords. "About the same time
Carausius, the which being borne of most base ofspring, attained to
high honour and dignitie by order of renowmed chiualrie & seruice in
the warres, receiued charge at Bolein, to kéepe the seas quiet alongst
the coasts of Britaine, France, and Flanders, and other countries
thereabouts, bicause the Frenchmen, which yet inhabited within the
bounds of Germanie, and the Saxons sore troubled those seas.
[Sidenote: The couetous practising of Carausius.]
Carausius taking oftentimes manie of the enimies, neither restored the
goods to them of the countrie from whome the enimies had bereft the
same, nor yet sent anie part therof to the emperours, but kept the
whole to his owne use. Whervpon when suspicion arose, that he should
of purpose suffer the enimies to passe by him, till they had taken
some prises, that in their returne with the same he might incounter
with them, and take that from them which they had gotten (by which
subtile practise he was thought greatly to haue inriched him
selfe) Maximianus that was fellow in gouernment of the empire with
[Sidenote: Maximianus purposeth to slea Carusius.]
Dioclesianus, remaining then in Gallia, and aduertised of these
dooings, commanded that Carausius should be slaine, but he hauing
warning thereof rebelled, and vsurping the imperiall ornaments and
title, got possession of Britaine, against whom (being a man of
great experience in all warlike knowledge) when warres had béene
[Sidenote: _Polydor_.]
attempted and folowed in vaine, at length a peace was concluded with
him, and so he enioied the possession of Britaine by the space of
[Sidenote: _Eutropius_.]
seuen yéeres, & then was slaine by his companion Alectus, the
which after him ruled Britaine for the space of thrée yéeres, and was
in the end oppressed by the guile of Asclepiodotus gouernour of the
pretorie, or (as I maie call him) lord lieutenant of some precinct
and iurisdiction perteining to the Romane empire." And so was Britaine
recouered by the foresaid Asclepiodotus about ten yeeres after that
Carausius had first vsurped the gouernment there, and about the
[Sidenote: 300.]
yéere of our Lord 300, as Polydor iudgeth, wherein he varieth much
from Fabian and others.

¶But to shew what we find further written of the subduing of Alectus,
[Sidenote: _Mamertinus_.]
I thinke it not amisse to set downe what Mamertinus in his oration
written in praise of Maximianus dooth report of this matter, which
shall be performed in the chapter following.

       *       *       *       *       *

_The substance of that which is written touching Britaine in a
panegyrike oration ascribed to Mamertinus, which he set foorth in
praise of the emperors Dioclesian and Maximian: it is intituled onelie
to Maximian, whereas neuerthelesse both the emperors are praised;
and likewise (as ye may perceiue) Constantius who was father to
Constantine the great is here spoken of, being chosen by the two
foresaid emperors, to assist them by the name of Cæsar in rule of the
empire: of whom hereafter more shall be said_.


"All the compasse of the earth (most victorious emperor) being now
recouered through your noble prowesse, not onelie so farre as the
limits of the Romane empire had before extended, but also the enimies
borders beeing subdued, when Almaine had beene so often vanquished,
and Sarmatia so often restrained & brought vnder, the people called
[Sidenote: Vitungi, Quadi, Carpi, and people of Germanie and Polonie.]
Vitungi, Quadi, Carpi so often put to flight, the Goth submitting
himselfe, the king of Persia by offering gifts suing for peace: one
despitefull reproch of so mightie an empire and gouernement ouer the
whole greeued vs to the heart, as now at length we will not sticke to
confesse, and to vs it seemed the more intollerable, bicause it onlie
remained to the accomplishing of your perfect renowme and glorie. And
verilie as there is but one name of Britaine, so was the losse to be
esteemed smal to the common wealth of a land so plentifull of corne,
so abundant with store of pastures, so flowing with veines of mettall,
so gainfull with reuenues rising of customs and tributes, so enuironed
with hauens, so huge in circuit, the which when Cesar, the founder of
this your honourable title, being the first that entered into it, writ
that he had found an other world, supposing it to be so big, that it
was not compassed with the sea, but that rather by resemblance the
great Ocean was compassed with it. Now at that time Britaine was
nothing furnished with ships of warre; so that the Romans, soone after
the warres of Carthage and Asia, had latelie beene exercised by
sea against pirats, and afterwards by reason of the warres against
Mithridates, were practised as well to fight by sea as land; besides
this, the British nation then alone was accustomed but onelie to
[Sidenote: Picts and Irishmen.]
the Picts and Irishmen, enimies halfe naked as yet & not vsed to weare
armor, so that the Britains for lacke of skill, easilie gaue place to
the Romane puissance, insomuch that Cesar might by that voiage onelie
glorie in this, that he had sailed and passed ouer the Ocean sea.

"But in this wicked rebellious robberie, first the nauie that in times
past defended the coasts of Gallia, was led away by the pirat when he
fled his waies: and beside this, a great number of other ships were
built after the mould of ours, the legion of Romane souldiers was
woon, and brought to take part with the enimie, and diuers bands of
strangers that were also souldiers were shut vp in the ships to serue
also against vs. The merchants of the parties of Gallia were assembled
and brought togither to the musters, and no small numbers of barbarous
nations procured to come in aid of the rebels, trusting to inrich
themselues by the spoile of the prouinces: and all these were trained
in the wars by sea, through the instruction of the first attemptors of
this mischieuous practise.

"And although our armies were inuincible in force and manhood, yet
were they raw and not accustomed to the seas, so that the fame of a
greeuous and great trouble by warre that was toward by this shamefull
rebellious robberie was blowne and sounded in ech mans eare,
[Sidenote: Long sufferance of euill increaseth boldnesse in the
although we hoped well of the end. Vnto the enimies forces was added
a long sufferance of their wicked practises without punishment, which
had puffed vp the presumptuous boldnesse of desperate people, that
they bragged of our stay, as it had bene for feare of them, whereas
the disaduantage which we had by sea, seemed as it were by a fatall
necessitie to deferre our victorie: neither did they beleeue that the
warre was put off for a time by aduise and counsell, but rather to be
omitted through despaire of dooing anie good against them, insomuch
that now the feare of common punishment being laid aside, one of
[Sidenote: Carausius slaine.]
the mates slue the archpirat or capteine rouer as I may call him,
hoping in reward of so great an exploit, to obteine the whole
gouernement into his hands.

"This warre then being both so necessarie, so hard to enter vpon, so
growne in time to a stubborne stiffenesse, and so well prouided for of
the enimies part, you noble emperour did so take it in hand, that so
soone as you bent the thundering force of your imperiall maiestie
against that enimie, ech man made account that the enterprise was
alreadie atchiued. For first of all, to the end that your diuine
power being absent, the barbarous nations should not attempt anie
new trouble (a thing chieflie to be foreseene) it was prouided for
aforehand by intercession made vnto your maiestie: for you your selfe,
you (I say) mightie lord Maximian eternall emperour, vouchedsafe to
aduance the comming of your diuine excellence by the neerest way that
might be, which to you was not vnknowne. You therefore suddenlie came
to the Rhine, and not with anie armie of horssemen or footmen, but
with the terrour of your presence did preserue and defend all that
frontire: for Maximian once being there vpon the riuage, counteruailed
anie the greatest armies that were to be found. For you (most
inuincible emperour) furnishing and arming diuers nauies, made the
enimie so vncerteine of his owne dooing and void of counsell, that
then at length he might perceiue that he was not defended, but rather
inclosed with the Ocean sea.

"Here commeth to mind how pleasant and easefull the good lucke of
those princes in gouerning the common wealth with praise was, which
sitting still in Rome had triumphs and surnames appointed them of
[Sidenote: Fronto counted Ciceros match.]such nations as their
capteins did vanquish. Fronto therefore, not the second, but match
with the first honor of the Romane eloquence, when he yeelded vnto
the emperor Antoninus the renowme of the warre brought the citie,
had committed the conduct and successe of that warre ouer vnto the
same Fronto, it was confessed by him, that the emperour sitting as
it were at the helme of the ship, deserued the praise, by giuing of
perfect order to the full accomplishing of the enterprise. But you
(most inuincible emperour) haue bene not onlie the appointer foorth
how all this voiage by sea, and prosecuting the warre by land should
bee demeaned, as apperteined to you by vertue of your imperiall rule
and dignitie, but also you haue beene an exhorter and setter forward
in the things themselues, and through example of your assured
constancie, the victorie was atchiued. For you taking the sea at
Sluice, did put an irreuocable desire into their hearts that were
readie to take ship at the same time in the mouth of the riuer of
Saine, insomuch that when the capteins of that armie did linger out
the time, by reason the seas and aire was troubled, they cried to haue
the sailes hoised vp, and signe giuen to lanch foorth, that they
might passe forward on their iournie, despising certeine tokens
which threatened their wrecke, and so set forward on a rainie and
tempestuous day, sailing with a crosse wind, for no forewind might
serue their turne.

"But what was he that durst not commit himselfe vnto the sea, were
the same neuer so vnquiet, when you were once vnder saile, and set
forward? One voice and exhortation was among them all (as report hath
gone thereof) when they heard that you were once got forth vpon the
water, What doo we dout? what mean we to staie? He is now loosed from
land, he is forward on his waie, and peraduenture is alreadie got
ouer: Let vs put all things in proofe, let vs venter through anie
dangers of sea whatsoeuer. What is there that we may stand in feare
of? we follow the emperour. Neither did the opinion of your good hap
deceiue them: for as by report of them selues we doo vnderstand, at
that selfe time there fell such a mist and thicke fog vpon the seas,
that the enimies nauie laid at the Ile of wight watching for their
aduersaries, and lurking as it were in await, these your ships passed
by, and were not once perceiued, neither did the enimie then staie
although he could not resist.

"But now as concerning that the same vnuanquishable army fighting
vnder your ensignes and name, streightwaies after it came to land,
set fire on their ships; what mooued them so to doo, except the
admonitions of your diuine motion? Or what other reason persuaded them
to reserue no furtherance for their flight, if need were, nor to feare
the doubtfull chances of war, nor (as the prouerbe saith) to
thinke the hazard of martiall dealings to be common, but that by
contemplation of your prosperous hap, it was verie certeine that there
needed no doubt to be cast for victorie to be obteined? There were no
sufficient forces at that present among them, no mightie or puissant
strength of the Romans, but they had onelie consideration of your
vnspeakable fortunate successe comming from the heauens aboue. For
whatsoeuer battell dooth chance to be offered, to make full account
[Sidenote: The good lucke in a capteine.]
of victorie, resteth not so much in the assurance of the
souldiers, as in the good lucke and felicitie of the capteine

"That same ringleader of the vngratious faction, what ment he to
depart from that shore which he possessed? Why did he forsake both his
nauie and the hauen? But that (most inuincible emperour) he stood
in feare of your comming, whose sailes he beheld readie to approch
towards him, how soeuer the matter should fall out, he chose rather to
trie his fortune with your capteins, than to abide the present force
of your highnes. Ah mad man! that vnderstood not, that whither so euer
he fled, the power of your diuine maiestie to be present in all places
where your countenance & banners are had in reuerence. But he fleeing
from your presence, fell into the hands of your people, of you was he
ouercome, of your armies was he oppressed.

"To be short, he was brought into such feare, and as it were still
looking behind him, for doubt of your comming after him, that as one
out of his wits and amazed, he wist not what to doo, he hasted forward
to his death, so that he neither set his men in order of battell, nor
marshalled such power as he had about him, but onlie with the old
authors of that conspiracie, and the hired bands of the barbarous
nations, as one forgetfull of so great preparation which he had made,
ran headlong forwards to his destruction, insomuch (noble emperour)
your felicitie yeeldeth this good hap to the common wealth, that the
victorie being atchiued in the behalfe of the Romane empire, there
almost died not one Romane: for as I heare, all those fields and
hills lay couered with none but onelie with the bodies of most wicked
enimies, the same being of the barbarous nations, or at the leastwise
apparelled in the counterfet shapes of barbarous garments, glistering
with their long yellow haires, but now with gashes of wounds and bloud
all deformed, and lieng in sundrie manners, as the pangs of death
occasioned by their wounds had caused them to stretch foorth or draw
in their maimed lims and mangled parts of their dieng bodies. And
[Sidenote: Alectus found dead.]
among these, the chiefe ringleader of the theeues was found, who
had put off those robes which in his life time he had vsurped and
[Sidenote: He had despoiled himselfe of the imperiall robes, bicause
he would not be knowne if he chanced to be slaine.]
dishonoured, so as scarse was he couered with one peece of apparell
whereby he might be knowne, so neere were his words true, vttered at
the houre of his death, which he saw at hand, that he would not haue
it vnderstood how he was slaine.

"Thus verelie (most inuincible emperour) so great a victorie was
appointed to you by consent of the immortall gods ouer all the enimies
whome you assailed, but namelie the slaughter of the Frankeners and
those your souldiers also, which (as before I haue said) 24 through
[Sidenote Francones slue Franci.]
missing their course by reason of the mist that lay on the seas, were
now come to the citie of London, where they slue downe right in ech
part of the same citie, what multitude soeuer remained of those hired
barbarous people, which escaping from the battell, ment (after they
had spoiled the citie) to haue got awaie by flight. But now being thus
slaine by your souldiers, the subiects of your prouince were both
preserued from further danger, and tooke pleasure to behold the
slaughter of such cruell enimies. O what a manifold victorie was this,
worthie vndoubtedlie of innumerable triumphes! by which victorie
Britaine is restored to the empire, by which victorie the nation of
the Frankeners is vtterlie destroied, & by which manie other nations
found accessaries in the conspiracie of that wicked practise, are
compelled to obedience. To conclude, the seas are purged and brought
to perpetuall quietnesse.

"Glorie you therefore, inuincible emperour, for that you haue as it
were got an other world, & in restoring to the Romane puissance the
glory of conquest by sea, haue added to the Romane empire an element
greater than all the compasse of the earth, that is, the mightie maine
ocean. You haue made an end of the warre (inuincible emperour) that
seemed as present to threaten all prouinces, and might haue spred
abroad and burst out in a flame, euen so largelie as the ocean seas
stretch, and the mediterrane gulfs doo reach. Neither are we ignorant,
although through feare of you that infection did fester within the
bowels of Britaine onelie, and proceeded no further, with what furie
it would haue aduanced it selfe else where, if it might haue beene
assured of means to haue ranged abroad so far as it wished. For it was
bounded in with no border of mounteine, nor riuer, which garrisons
appointed were garded and defended but euen so as the ships, although
we had your martiall prowes and prosperous fortune redie to releeue
vs, & was still at our elbowes to put vs in feare, so farre as either
sea reacheth or wind bloweth.

"For that incredible boldnesse and vnwoorthie good hap of a few sillie
[Sidenote: The piracie of the Frankeners called _Franci_ or _Francones_.]
captiues of the Frankeners in time of the emperour Probus came to our
remembrance, which Frankeners in that season, conueieng awaie certeine
vessels from the coasts of Pontus, wasted both Grecia and Asia, and
not without great hurt and damage, ariuing vpon diuers parts of the
shore of Libia, at length tooke the citie of Saragose in Sicile (an
hauen towne in times past highlie renowmed for victories gotten by
sea:) & after this passing thorough the streicts of Giberalterra,
came into the Ocean, and so with the fortunate successe of their rash
presumptuous attempt, shewed how nothing is shut vp in safetie from
the desperate boldnesse of pirats, where ships maie come and haue
accesse. And so therefore by this your victorie, not Britaine alone
is deliuered from bondage, but vnto all nations is safetie restored,
which might by the vse of the seas come to as great perils in time of
warre, as to gaine of commodities in time of peace.

"Now Spaine (to let passe the coasts of Gallia) with hir shores almost
in sight is in suertie: now Italie, now Afrike, now all nations euen
vnto the fens of Meotis are void of perpetuall cares. Neither are they
lesse ioifull, the feare of danger being taken awaie, which to feele
as yet the necessitie had not brought them: but they reioise so much
the more for this, that both in the guiding of your prouidence, and
also furtherance of fortune, so great a force of rebellion by seamen
is calmed, vpon the entring into their borders, and Britaine it selfe
which had giuen harbour to so long a mischiefe, is euidentlie knowne
[Sidenote: Britains restored to quietnes.]
to haue tasted of your victorie, with hir onelie restitution to
quietnesse. Not without good cause therfore immediatlie, when you hir
long wished reuenger and deliuerer were once arriued, your maiestie
was met with great triumph, & the Britains replenished with all inward
[Sidenote: The Britains receiue Maximian with great ioy and
gladnesse, came foorth and offered themselues to your presence,
with their wiues and children, reuerencing not onlie your selfe (on
whom they set their eies, as on one descended downe to them from
heauen) but also euen the sailes and tackling of that ship which had
brought your diuine presence vnto their coasts: and when you should
set foot on land, they were readie to lie downe at your feet, that you
might (as it were) march ouer them, so desirous were they of you.

"Neither was it anie maruell if they shewed them selues so ioifull,
sith after their miserable captiuitie so manie yeeres continued, after
so long abusing of their wiues, and filthie bondage of their children,
at length yet were they now restored to libertie, at length made
Romans, at length refreshed with the true light of the imperiall rule
and gouernement: for beside the fame of your clemencie and pitie,
which was set forth by the report of all nations, in your countenance
(Cesar) they perceiued the tokens of all vertues, in your face
grauitie, in your eies mildnesse, in your ruddie cheekes bashfulnesse,
in your words iustice: all which things as by regard they
acknowledged, so with voices of gladnesse they signified on high. To
you they bound themselues by vow, to you they bound their children:
yea and to your children they vowed all the posteritie of their race
and ofspring.

[Sidenote: Dioclesian and Maximian.]
"We trulie (O perpetuall parents and lords of mankind) require
this of the immortall gods with most earnest supplication and heartie
praier, that our children and their children, and such other as shall
come of them for euer hereafter, may be dedicated vnto you, and to
those whom you now bring vp, or shall bring vp hereafter. For what
better hap can we wish to them that shall succeed vs, than to be
enioiers of that felicitie which now we our selues enioy? The Romane
common wealth dooth now comprehend in one coniunction of peace, all
whatsoeuer at sundrie times haue belonged to the Romans, and that huge
power which with too great a burden was shroonke downe, and riuen in
sunder, is now brought to ioine againe in the assured ioints of the
imperiall gouernment. For there is no part of the earth nor region
vnder heauen, but that either it remaineth quiet through feare, or
subdued by force of armies, or at the lestwise bound by clemencie.
And is there anie other thing else in other parts, which if will and
reason should mooue men thereto, that might be obteined? Beyond the
Ocean, what is there more than Britaine, which is so recouered by
[Sidenote: Nations néere to Britaine obeie the emperours.]
you, that those nations which are nere adioining to the bounds of that
Ile, are obedient to your commandements? There is no occasion that may
mooue you to passe further, except the ends of the Ocean sea, which
nature forbiddeth should be sought for. All is yours (most inuincible
princes) which are accounted woorthie of you, and thereof commeth it,
that you may equallie prouide for euerie one, sith you haue the whole
in your maiesties hands. And therefore as heretofore (most excellent
emperour Dioclesian) by your commandement Asia did supplie the desert
places of Thracia with inhabitants transported thither, as afterward
(most excellent emperour Maximian) by your appointment, the Frankeners
at length brought to a pleasant subiection, and admitted to liue vnder
[Sidenote: The printed booke hath Heruij, but I take the H, to be
thrust in for N.]
lawes, hath peopled and manured the vacant fields of the Neruians,
and those about the citie of Trier. And so now by your victories
(inuincible Constantius Cesar) whatsoeuer did lie vacant about Amiens,
Beauois, Trois, and Langres, beginneth to florish with inhabitants of
sundrie nations: yea and moreouer that your most obedient citie of
Autun, for whose sake I haue a peculiar cause to reioise, by meanes
of this triumphant victorie in Britaine, it hath receiued manie &
[Sidenote: Artificers foorth of Britaine.]
diuerse artificers, of whom those prouinces were ful, and now by their
workemanship the same citie riseth vp by repairing of ancient houses,
and restoring of publike buildings and temples, so that now it
accounteth that the old name of brotherlie incorporation to Rome, is
againe to hir restored, when she hath you eftsoones for hir founder. I
haue said (inuincible emperour) almost more than I haue beene able,
& not so much as I ought, that I may haue most iust cause by your
clemencies licence, both now to end, & often hereafter to speake: and
thus I ceasse."

       *       *       *       *       *

_What is to be observed and noted out of the panegyrike oration of
Mamertinus afore remembred, with necessarie collections out of other


Now let vs consider what is to be noted out of this part of the
foresaid oration. It should seeme that when the emperour Maximian was
sent into Gallia by appointment taken betwixt him and Dioclesian,
after he had quieted things there, he set his mind foorthwith to
reduce Britaine vnder the obedience of the empire, which was at that
present kept vnder subiection of such princes as mainteined their
state, by the mightie forces of such number of ships as they had got
togither, furnished with all things necessarie, & namelie of able
[Sidenote: Franci, or Frankeneres, people of Germanie.]
seamen, as well Britains as strangers, among whome the Frankeners
were chiefe, a nation of Germanie, as then highly renowmed for their
puissance by sea, néere to the which they inhabited, so that there
were no rouers comparable to them.

But because none durst stirre on these our seas for feare of the
British fléet that passed to and fro at pleasure, to the great
annoiance of the Romane subiects inhabiting alongst the coasts of
Gallia, Maximian both to recouer againe so wealthie and profitable a
land vnto the obeisance of the empire, as Britaine then was, and also
to deliuer the people of Gallia subiect to the Romans, from danger
of being dailie spoiled by those rouers that were mainteined here in
Britaine, he prouided with all diligence such numbers of ships as were
thought requisite for so great an enterprise, and rigging them in
sundrie places, tooke order for their setting forward to his most
aduantage for the easie atchiuing of his enterprise. He appointed to
passe himselfe from the coasts of Flanders, at what time other of
capteines with their fleets from other parts should likewise make
saile towards Britaine. By this meanes Alectus that had vsurped the
title & dignitie of king or rather emperour ouer the Britains, knew
not where to take héed, but yet vnderstanding of the nauie that was
made readie in the mouth of Saine, he ment by that which maie be
coniectured, to intercept that fléet, as it should come foorth and
make saile forwards: and so for that purpose he laie with a great
number of ships about the Ile of Wight.

But whether Asclepiodotus came ouer with that nauie which was rigged
on the coasts of Flanders, or with some other, I will not presume
to affirme either to or fro, because in déed Mamertinus maketh
no expresse mention either of Alectus or Asclepiodotus: but
notwithstanding it is euident by that which is conteined in his
oration, that not Maximian, but some other of his capteins gouerned
the armie, which slue Alectus, so that we maie suppose that
Asclepiodotus was chiefteine ouer some number of ships directed by
Maximians appointment to passe ouer into this Ile against the same
Alectus: and so maie this, which Mamertinus writeth, agrée with the
[Sidenote: _Eutropius_.]
truth of that which we doo find in Eutropius.

Héere is to be remembred, that after Maximians had thus recouered
Britaine out of their hands that vsurped the rule thereof from the
Romans, it should séeme that not onelie great numbers of artificers
& other people were conueied ouer into Gallia, there to inhabit and
furnish such cities as were run into decaie, but also a power of
warlike youths was transported thither to defend the countrie from the
inuasion of barbarous nations. For we find that in the daies of this
Maximian, the Britains expelling the Neruians out of the citie of Mons
in Henaud, held a castell there, which was called Bretaimons after
them, wherevpon the citie was afterward called Mons, retaining the
last syllable onlie, as in such cases it hath often happened.

Moreouer this is not to be forgotten, that as Humfrey Lhoyd hath very
well noted in his booke intituled "Fragmenta historiæ Britannicæ,"
Mamertinus in this parcell of his panegyrike oration dooth make first
mention of the nation of Picts, of all other the ancient Romane
writers: so that not one before his time once nameth Picts or Scots.
But now to returne where we left.

       *       *       *       *       *

_The state of this Iland vnder bloudie Dioclesian the persecuting
tyrant, of Alban the first that suffered martyrdome in Britaine, what
miracles were wrought at his death, whereof Lichfield tooke the name;
of Coilus earle of Colchester, whose daughter Helen was maried to
Constantius the emperour, as some authours suppose_.


After that Britaine was thus recouered by the Romans, Dioclesian and
Maximian ruling the empire, the Iland tasted of the crueltie that
Dioclesian exercised against the christians, in persecuting them with
all extremities, continuallie for the space of ten yéeres. Amongst
other, one Alban a citizen of Werlamchester, a towne now bearing
his name, was the first that suffered here in Britaine in this
persecution, being conuerted to the faith by the zealous christian
Amphibalus, whom he receiued into his house: insomuch that when there
[Sidenote: _Beda and Gyldas_.]
came sergeants to séeke for the same Amphibalus, the foresaid
Alban to preserue Amphibalus out of danger, presented himselfe in the
apparell of the said Amphibalus, & so being apprehended in his stead,
was brought before the iudge and examined: and for that he refused to
doo sacrifice to the false gods, he was beheaded on the top of an hill
ouer against the towne of Werlamchester aforesaid where afterwards
was builded a church and monasterie in remembrance of his martyrdome,
insomuch that the towne there restored, after that Werlamchester was
destroied, tooke name of him, and so is vnto this day called saint

It is reported by writers, that diuers miracles were wrought at the
[Sidenote: _Beda_. Sée the booke of acts and monuments set forth
by master Fox.]
time of his death, insomuch that one which was appointed to doo the
execution, was conuerted, and refusing to doo that office, suffered
also with him: but he that tooke vpon him to doo it, reioised nothing
thereat, for his eies fell out of his head downe to the ground,
togither with the head of that holie man which he had then cut off.
There were also martyred about the same time two constant witnesses
of Christ his religion, Aaron and Iulius, citizens of Caerleon
[Sidenote:_Iohn Rossus. Warwicens. in lib. de Wigorniens. epis._]
Arwiske. Moreouer, a great number of Christians which were assembled
togither to heare the word of life, preached by that vertuous man
Amphibalus, were slaine by the wicked pagans at Lichfield, whereof
[Sidenote: Lichfield whereof it tooke name.]
that towne tooke name, as you would say, The field of dead corpses.

To be briefe, this persecution was so great and greeuous, and thereto
[Sidenote: _Gyldas_.]
so vniuersall, that in maner the Christian religion was thereby
destroied. The faithfull people were slaine, their bookes burnt,
[Sidenote: _Ran. Cestren._]
and churches ouerthrowne. It is recorded that in one moneths space
[Sidenote: _Matth. West. Constantius_.]
in diuers places of the world there were 17000 godlie men and women
put to death, for professing the christian faith in the daies of that
tyrant Dioclesian and his fellow Maximian.

[Sidenote: COELUS. 262.]
Coelus earle of Colchester began his dominion ouer the Britains in
the yeere of our Lord 262. This Coelus or Coell ruled the land for
a certeine time, so as the Britains were well content with his
gouernement, and liued the longer in rest from inuasion of the Romans,
bicause they were occupied in other places: but finallie they finding
[Sidenote: _Fabian_.]
time for their purpose, appointed one Constantius to passe ouer
into this Ile with an armie, the which Constantius put Coelus in
such dread, that immediatlie vpon his arriuall Coelus sent to him an
ambassage, and concluded a peace with him, couenanting to pay the
[Sidenote:_Gal. Mon._ _Fabian_. _Caxton_.]
accustomed tribute, & gaue to Constantius his daughter in mariage
called Helen, a noble ladie and a learned. Shortlie after king Coell
died, when he had reigned (as some write) 27 yeeres or (as other haue)
but 13 yeeres.

¶ But by the way touching this Coelus, I will not denie, but assuredly
such a prince there was: howbeit that he had a daughter named Helen,
whom he maried vnto Constantius the Romane lieutenant that was after
emperor, I leaue that to be decided of the learned. For if the whole
course of the liues, as well of the father and the sonne Constantius
and Constantine, as likewise of the mother Helen, be consideratelie
marked from time to time, and yeere to yéere, as out of authors both
[Sidenote: _Lib. 7. cap. 18_.]
Greeke and Latine the same may be gathered, I feare least such
doubt maie rise in this matter, that it will be harder to prooue Helen
a Britane, than Constantine to be borne in Bithynia (as Nicephorus
auoucheth.) But forsomuch as I meane not to step from the course of
our countrie writers in such points, where the receiued opinion may
séeme to warrant the credit of the historie, I will with other admit
both the mother and sonne to be Britains in the whole discourse of the
historie following, as though I had forgot what in this place I haue

       *       *       *       *       *

_A further discourse of the forenamed Constantius and Helen, his
regiment ouer this Iland, his behauiour and talke to his sonne and
councellors as he lay on his death-bed, a deuise that he put in
practise to vnderstand what true Christians he had in his court,
his commendable vertues, that the Britains in his time imbraced the
christian faith is prooued_.


[Sidenote: CONSTANTIUS. _Matth. West._ saith 302. 289.]
Constantius a senatour of Rome began to reigne ouer the Britains,
in the yeere of our Lord 289, as our histories report. This
Constantius (as before ye haue heard) had to wife Helen the
daughter of the foresaid king Coel, of whome he begat a sonne named
Constantinus, which after was emperour, and for his woorthie dooings
surnamed Constantine the great. S. Ambrose following the common
[Sidenote: _Orosius. Beda_.]
report, writeth that this Helen was a maid in an inne: and some
againe write, that she was concubine to Constantius, and not his wife.
[Sidenote: _Cuspinian_.]
But whatsoeuer she was, it appeareth by the writers of the Romane
[Sidenote: _Fabian._]
histories, that Constantius being the daughters sonne of one
Crispus, that was brother to the emperour Claudius, came into
Britaine, and quieted the troubles that were raised by the Britains,
and there (as some write) maried the foresaid Helen, being a woman of
an excellent beautie, whom yet [after] he was constreined to forsake,
and to marrie Theodora the daughter in law of Herculeus Maximianus, by
whome he had six sonnes, and finallie was created emperour, togither
with the said Galerius Maximianus, at what time Dioclesianus and his
fellow Herculeus Maximianus renounced the rule of the empire, and
committed the same vnto them. The empire was then diuided betwixt
them, so that to Constantius the regions of Italie, Affrike, France
Spaine and Britaine were assigned; & to Galerius, Illyricum, Grecia,
and all the east parts. But Constantine being a man void of ambition,
was contented to leaue Italie and Affrike, supposing his charge to be
great inough to haue the gouernement in his hands of France, Spaine,
and Britaine (as Eutropius saith.)

But as touching his reigne ouer the Britains, we haue not to say
further than as we find in our owne writers recorded: as for his
gouernement in the empire, it is to be considered, that first he was
admitted to rule as an assistant to Maximian vnder the title of
Cesar: and so from that time if you shall account his reigne, it maie
comprehend 11, 12, or 13 yeeres, yea more or lesse, according to the
diuersitie found in writers. Howbeit, if we shall reckon his reigne
from the time onelie that Dioclesian and Maximian resigned their
title vnto the empire, we shall find that he reigned not fullie thrée
yéeres. For whereas betwéene the slaughter of Alectus, and the comming
of Constantius, are accounted 8 yéeres and od moneths, not onelie
those eight yéeres, but also some space of time before maie be
ascribed vnto Constantius: for although before his comming ouer into
Britaine now this last time (for he had béene here afore, as it well
appéereth) Asclepiodotus gouerning as legat, albeit vnder Constantius,
who had a great portion of the west parts of the empire vnder his
regiment, by the title, as I haue said, of Cesar, yet he was not said
to reigne absolutelie till Dioclesian and Maximian resigned. But now
to conclude with the dooings of Constantius, at length he fell
[Sidenote: 306.]
sicke at Yorke, and there died, about the yéere of our Lord 306.

This is not to be forgotten, that whilest he laie on his death-bed,
somewhat before he departed this life, hearing that his sonne
Constantine was come, and escaped from the emperours Dioclesian and
Maximian, with whom he remained as a pledge (as after shall be partlie
touched) he receiued him with all ioy, and raising himselfe vp in his
bed, in presence of his other sonnes & counsellours, with a great
number of other people and strangers that were come to visit him, he
set the crowne vpon his sonnes head, and adorned him with other
[Sidenote: _Niceph._]
imperiall robes and garments, executing as it were him selfe the
office of an herald, and withall spake these woords vnto his said
sonne, and to his counsellours there about him: "Now is my death to
[Sidenote: _Tripartit. histo._]
me more welcome, and my departure hence more pleasant; I haue héere a
large epitaph and monument of buriall, to wit, mine owne sonne, and
one whome in earth I leaue to be emperour in my place, which by Gods
good helpe shall wipe away the teares of the Christians, and reuenge
the crueltie exercised by tyrants. This I reckon to chance vnto me in
stéed of most felicitie."

After this, turning himselfe to the multitude, he commanded them all
to be of good comfort, meaning those that had not forsaken true vertue
and godlinesse in Christ, which Christ he vndertooke should continue
with his sonne Constantine in all enterprises, which in warres or
otherwise he should take in hand. That deuise also is woorthie to
be had in memorie, which he put in practise in his life time, to
vnderstand what true and sincere Christians were remaining in his
court. For whereas he had béene first a persecuter, and after was
conuerted, it was a matter easie to persuade the world, that he was no
earnest Christian: and so the policie which he thought to worke, was
the sooner brought to passe, which was this.

He called togither all his officers and seruants, feining himselfe
to choose out such as would doo sacrifice to diuels, and that those
onelie should remaine with him and kéepe their office, and the rest
that refused so to doo, should be thrust out, and banished the court.
Héervpon all the courtiers diuided themselues into companies: and
when some offered willinglie to doo sacrifice, and other some boldlie
refused: the emperour marking their dealings, sharpelie rebuked those
which were so readie to dishonour the liuing God, accounting them as
treitours to his diuine maiestie, and not woorthie to remaine within
the court gates: but those that constantlie stood in the profession
of the christian faith, he greatlie commended, as men woorthie to be
about a prince: and withall declared, that from thencefoorth they
should be as chiefe counsellours and defenders both of his person and
kingdome, estéeming more of them than of all the treasure he had in
his coffers.

To conclude, he was a graue prince, sober, vpright, courteous and
liberall, as he which kept his mind euer frée from couetous desire of
great riches: insomuch that when he should make anie great feast to
his friends, he was not ashamed to borow plate and siluer vessell to
[Sidenote: _Pomponius Lænis_.]
serue his turne, and to furnish his cupbord for the time, being
contented for himselfe to be serued in cruses & earthen vessels. He
was woont to haue this saieng in his mouth, that better it was that
the subiects should haue store of monie and riches, than the prince to
kéepe it close in his treasurie, where it serued to no vse. By such
courteous dealing the prouinces which were in his charge flourished
in great wealth and quietnesse. He was a verie wise and politike
[Sidenote: He died in the yéere 306. as _Matt. West._ hath noted,
and reigned over the Britains but 11. yéeres as _Galf._ saith.]
prince in the ordering of all weightie matters, and verie skillfull in
the practise of warres, so that he stood the Romane empire in great
stéed, and was therefore highlie beloued of the souldiers, insomuch
that immediatlie after his deceasse, they proclaimed his sonne
Constantine emperour.

That the Christian faith was imbraced of the Britains in this season,
it maie appéere, in that Hilarias bishop of Poictiers writeth to his
brethren in Britaine, and Constantine in an epistle (as Theodoretus
saith in his first booke and tenth chapter) maketh mention of the
churches in Britaine: which also Sozomenus dooth affirme. For the
Britains after they had receiued the faith, defended the same euen
with the shedding of their bloud, as Amphibalus, who in this
[Sidenote: 291. _Iohn Bale_.]
Constantius daies being apprehended, suffered at Redburne neere to
Werlamchester, about 15 yéeres after the martyrdome of his host S.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Constantine created emperour in Britaine, he is sollicited to take
vpon him the regiment of those countries that his father gouerned, he
is requested to subdue Maxentius the vsurping tyrant, Maximianus his
father seeketh to depose him, Constantines death is purposed by the
said Maximianus the father & his sonne Maxentius, Fausta the daughter
of Maximianus & wife to Constantine detecteth hir fathers trecherie
to hir husband, Maximianus is strangled at Constantines commandement,
lèague and alliance betweene him and Licinius, he is slaine, the
empresse Helen commended, the crosse of Christ found with the
inscription of the same, what miracles were wrought thereby, of the
nailes wherewith Christ was crucified, Constantine commended, the
state of Britaine in his time_.


[Sidenote: CONSTANTINE. 306.]
Constantine being the son of the forenamed Constantius, begot of
his first wife Helen, the daughter (as some affirme) of Coell late
king of the Britains, began to reigne in the yéere of our Lord 306.
This worthie prince begotten of a British woman, & borne of hir in
Britaine (as our writers doo affirme) and created certeinlie emperour
in Britaine, did doubtlesse make his natiue countrie partaker of his
high glorie and renowme, which by his great prowes, politike
wisedome, woorthie gouernment, and other his princelie qualities most
abundantlie planted in his noble person, he purchased and got thorough
the circuit of the whole earth, insomuch that for the high enterprises
and noble acts by him happilie brought to passe and atchiued, he was
surnamed (as before is said) the great Constantine. Whilest this
Constantine remained at Rome in manner as he had béene a pledge with
Galerius in his fathers life time, he being then but yoong, fled from
thence, and with all post hast returned to his father into Britaine,
killing or howghing by the waie all such horsses as were appointed
[Sidenote: Eutropius. Sextus Aurelius Victor.]
to stand at innes readie for such as should ride in post, least being
pursued, he should haue béene ouertaken, and brought backe againe by
such as might be sent to pursue him.

At his comming into Britaine, he found his father sore vexed with
sicknesse, whereof shortlie after he died, and then was he by helpe of
such as were about him, incouraged to take vpon him as emperour:
[Sidenote: Erocus king of the Almains.]
and namelie one Erocus king of the Almains, which had accompanied
his father thither, assisted him thereto, so that being proclaimed
emperour, he tooke vpon him the rule of those countries which his
father had in gouernment, that is to saie, France, Spaine, the Alpes,
and Britaine, with other prouinces héere in the west: and ruling the
same with great equitie and wisdome, he greatly wan the fauour of
the people, insomuch that the fame of his politike gouernment and
courteous dealing being spred abroad, when Maxentius the tyrant
[Sidenote: Maxentius the tyrant.]
that occupied the rule of the empire at Rome, and in Italie by
wrongfull vsurping & abusing the same, was grown into the hatred of
the Romans and other Italians, Constantine was earnestlie by them
requested to come into Italie, and to helpe to subdue Maxentius, that
he might reforme the state of things there.

This Maxentius was sonne to Herculeus Maximianus, and Constantine had
married Fausta the daughter of the said Maximianus. Now so it was,
that Maximianus, immediatlie after that his sonne Maxentius had taken
the rule vpon him, sought meanes to haue deposed him, and to haue
resumed and taken eftsoones into his owne hands the gouernment of
the empire. But solliciting Dioclesian to doo the like, he was much
reprooued of him for his vnreasonable and ambitious purpose: so that
when he perceiued that neither Dioclesian would be thereto agreeable,
nor induce the souldiers to admit him, they hauing alreadie
established his sonne, began to deuise waies how to assure the state
more stronglie to his said sonne. And hearing that his sonne in law
Constantine was minded to come into Italie against him, he purposed to
practise Constantines destruction, insomuch that it was iudged by this
[Sidenote: Dissimulation.]
which followed, that Herculeus Maximianus did but for a colour
séeme to mislike that which his said son Maxentius had doone, to the
end he might the sooner accomplish his intent for the dispatching of
Constantine out of the waie.

[Sidenote: _Ranulphus Cestrensis_.]
Heerevpon (as it were) fléeing out of Italie, he came to
Constantine, who as then hauing appointed lieutenants vnder him in
Britaine, remained in France, and with all ioy and honour that might
be, receiued his father in law: the which being earnestlie bent to
[Sidenote: Fausta the daughter of Maximianas and wife to Constantine.]
compasse his purpose, made his daughter Fausta priuie thereto:
which ladie (either for feare least the concealing thereof might turne
hir to displeasure, either else for the entire loue which she bare to
hir husband) reuealed hir fathers wicked purpose. Wherevpon whilest
[Sidenote: Marsiles.]
Constantine went about to be reuenged of such a traitorous
practise, Herculeus fled to Marsiles, purposing there to take the sea,
and so to retire to his sonne Maxentius into Italie. But yer he could
[Sidenote: Maximianus slaine. _Ann. Chri. 322_.]
get awaie from thence, he was strangled by commandement of his
sonne in law Constantine, and so ended his life, which he had spotted
with manie cruell acts, as well in persecuting the professours of the
christian name, as others.

[Sidenote: Licinius chosen fellow with Maximianus in the empire.]
In this meane time had Maximianus adopted one Licinius to assist
him in gouernance of the empire, proclaiming him Cesar. So that now at
one selfe time Constantine gouerned France and the west parts of the
empire, Maxentius held Italie, Affrike, and Aegypt: and Maximianus
which likewise had beene elected Cesar, ruled the east parts, and
Licinius Illyrium and Grecia. But shortlie after, the emperour
Constantine ioined in league with Licinius, and gaue to him his
sister in marriage, named Constantia, for more suertie of faithfull
friendship to indure betwixt them. He sent him also against Maximianus
who gouerning in the east part of the empire, purposed the destruction
of Constantine and all his partakers: but being vanquished by Licinius
at Tarsus, he shortlie after died, being eaten with lice. Constantine
after this was called into Italie, to deliuer the Romans and Italians
from the tyrannie of Maxentius, which occasion so offered, Constantine
gladlie accepting, passed into Italie, and after certeine victories
got against Maxentius, at length slue him.

After this, when Maximianus was dead, who prepared to make warre
against Licinius, that had married Constantia the sister of
Constantine, he finallie made warre against his brother in law the
said Licinius, by reason of such quarrels as fell out betwixt them. In
the which warre Licinius was put to the woorse, and at length comming
into the hands of Constantine, was put to death, so that Constantine
by this meanes got the whole empire vnder his rule and subiection.
He was a great fauourer of the Christian religion, insomuch that to
aduance the same, he tooke order for the conuerting of the temples
dedicated to the honour of idols, vnto the seruice of the true and
almightie God. He commanded also, that none should be admitted to
[Sidenote: Christians honoured and cherished.]
serue as a souldier in the warres, except he were a christian, nor yet
to haue rule of anie countrie or armie. He also ordeined, the wéeke
before Easter, and that which followed to be kept as holie, and no
person to doo anie bodilie woorks during the same.

[Sidenote: _Polydor_. The praise of the empresse Helen. 328.]
He was much counselled by that noble and most vertuous ladie his
mother, the empresse Helen, who being a godlie and deuout woman, did
what in hir laie, to mooue him to the setting foorth of Gods honour
and increase of the christian faith, wherein as yet he was not fullie
instructed. ¶ Some writers alledge, that she being at Ierusalem, made
diligent search to find out the place of the sepulchre of our Lord,
and at length found it, though with much adoo: for the infidels had
stopped it vp, and couered it with a heape of filthie earth, and
builded aloft vpon the place, a chappell dedicated to Venus, where
yoong women vsed to sing songs in honour of that vnchast goddesse.
Helen caused the same to be ouerthrowne, the earth to be remooued, and
the place cleansed, so that at length the sepulchre appéered, and fast
by were found there buried in the earth thrée crosses and the nailes.
But the crosse wherevpon our Sauiour was crucified, was knowne by the
title written vpon it, though almost worne out, in letters of Hebrew,
Gréeke, and Latine: the inscription was this, _Iesus Nazarenus rex
Iudæorum_. It was also perceiued which was that crosse by a miracle
(as it is reported, but how trulie I can not tell) that should be
wrought thereby: for being laid to a sicke woman, onlie with the
touching thereof she was healed. It was also said, that a dead man was
raised from death to life, his bodie onlie being touched therewith.
Wherevpon Constantine mooued with these things, forbad that from
thencefoorth anie should be put to death on the crosse, to the
end that the thing which afore time was accounted infamous and
reprochfull, might now be had in honour and reuerence.

The empresse Helen hauing thus found the crosse, builded a temple
there,& taking with hir the nailes, returned with the same to hir
sonne Constantine, who set one of them in the crest of his helmet,
[Sidenote: _Polydor_.]
an other in the bridle of his horsse, and the third he cast into the
sea, to asswage and pacifie the furious tempests and rage thereof. She
also brought with hir a parcell of that holie crosse, and gaue it
[Sidenote: _Polydor_.]
to hir sonne the said Constantine, the which he caused to be closed
within an image that represented his person, standing vpon a piller
in the market place of Constantine, or (as some late writers haue) he
caused it to be inclosed in a coffer of gold, adorned with rich stones
and pearls, placing it in a church called Sessoriana, the which church
he indued with manie great gifts and precious ornaments. Manie works
of great zeale and vertue are remembered by writers to haue béene
doone by this Constantine and his mother Helen, to the setting foorth
of Gods glorie, and the aduancing of the faith of Christ. But to be
[Sidenote: The commendation of Constantine.]
briefe, he was a man in whome manie excellent vertues and good
qualities both of mind and bodie manifestlie appéered, chieflie he was
a prince of great knowledge and experience in warre, and therewith
verie fortunate, an earnest louer of iustice, and to conclude, borne
to all honour.

But now to speake somewhat of the state of Britaine in his time, ye
shall vnderstand, that as before is recorded, at his going ouer into
France, after that he was proclaimed emperour, he left behind him in
Britaine certeine gouernours to rule the land, and amongst other one
Maximinus a right valiant capteine. He tooke with him a great part
of the youth of Britaine, and diuerse of the chiefe men amongst the
nobilitie, in whose approoued manhood, loialtie, and constancie, he
conceiued a great hope to go thorough with all his enterprises, as
with the which being accompanied and compassed about, he passed ouer
into Gallia, entred into Italie, and in euerie place ouercame his

[Sidenote: _Gulielmus Malmes._ Britains seruing in the warres vnder
Some write that Constantine thus conueieng ouer sea with him a
great armie of Britains, and by their industrie obteining victorie as
he wished, he placed a great number of such as were discharged out
of wages, and licenced to giue ouer the warre, in a part of Gallia
towards the west sea coast, where their posteritie remaine vnto this
daie, maruellouslie increased afterwards, and somewhat differing from
our Britains, the Welshmen, in manners and language. Amongst those
noble men which he tooke with him when he departed out of this
[Sidenote: _Galfridus. Matt. West._]
land (as our writers doo testifie) were thrée vncles of his mother
Helen, that is to say Hoelmus, Trahernus, and Marius, whome he made
senators of Rome.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Of Octauius a British lord, his reigne ouer the Britains, he
incountereth with Traherne first neere Winchester, and afterwards in
Westmerland: Octauius being discomfited fleeth into Norway, Traherne
is slaine, Octauius sendeth for Maximianus, on whom he bestoweth his
daughter and the kingdome of Britaine: the death of Octauius, Helena
builded the wals of Colchester and London, she dieth and is buried,
Constantine departeth this life, Britaine reckoned among the prouinces
that reteined the christian faith, Paulus a Spaniard is sent into
Britaine, he dealeth roughlie with the people, Martinus the lieutenant
excuseth them as innocent, his vnluckie end, Paulus returneth into


Now in the meane time that Constantine had obteined and ruled the
whole empire, Britaine as it were hauing recouered libertie, in that
one of hir children being hir king, had got the gouernment of the
[Sidenote: Octauius. _Caxton_. Gewisses inhabited the countrie
which the west Saxons after held. The name of Gewisses came in with
the Saxons of Guuy, &c.]
whole earth, remained in better quiet than afore time she had doone.
But yet in the meane season, if we shall credit the British chronicle
and Geffrey of Monmouth the interpretor thereof; there was a British
lord, named Octauius or Octauian, as the old English chronicle nameth
him, that was duke of the Gewisses, and appointed by Constantine to
be ruler of the land in his absence, the which Octauius (after that
Constantine had recouered Rome and Italie, and was so busied in the
affaires of the empire in those parts, that as was thought, he could
not returne backe into Britaine) seized into his hands the whole
dominion of Britaine, and held himselfe for king.

[Sidenote: OCTAUIUS.]
This Octauius then beginning his reigne ouer the Britains in the
[Sidenote: _Galfridus_. Sidenote: 329.]
yéere of our Lord 329, prouoked Constantine to send against him one
of his mothers vncles, the foresaid Traherne. This Trahernus, or
as some name him Traherne, entred this land with three legions of
souldiers, & in a field néere vnto Winchester, was incountered by
[Sidenote: _Fabian_. _Galfridus_. This agréeth not
altogither with that which _Hector Boetius_ writeth, as in the
Scotish chronicle appéereth.]
Octauius and his Britains, by whome after a sore battell there
striken betwixt them, in the end Traherne was put to flight and
chased, insomuch that he was constreined to forsake that part of the
land, and to draw towards Scotland. Octauius hauing knowledge of his
passage, followed him, & in the countrie of Westmerland eftsoones gaue
him battell, but in that battell Octauius was put to the woorsse, and
constreined to forsake the land, fled into Norway, there to purchase
aid: and being readie with such power as he there gathered, what of
Britains and Norwegians, to returne into Britaine. Before his landing
he was aduertised that an earle of Britaine which bare him heartie
[Sidenote: Traherne slaine. See in the Scotish chronicles more of
these matters. _Matth. West._ saith 316.]
good will, had by treason slaine Traherne. Octauius then comming to
land, eftsoones got possession of Britaine, which should be (as Fabian
gathereth) about the yéere of our Lord 329, in the 20 yéere of the
reigne of the emperour Constantine, and about two yéeres after that
the said Octauius first tooke vpon him to rule as king.

After this (as the British chronicle affirmeth) Octauius gouerned the
land right noblie, and greatlie to the contentation of the Britains.
At length when he was fallen in age, and had no issue but one
[Sidenote: Maximianus is sent for. Conan Meridoc duke of Cornewall.
This agréeth not with that which is found in the Scotish chronicles.]
daughter, he was counselled to send vnto Rome for one Maximianus, a
noble yoong man, coosine to the emperour Constantine, on the part of
his mother Helena, to come into Britaine, and to take to his wife
the said daughter of Octauius, and so with hir to haue the kingdome.
Octauius at the first meant to haue giuen hir in mariage vnto one
Conan Meridoc duke of Cornewall, which was his nephue: but when the
lords would not thereto agrée, at the length he appointed one
Maurice sonne to the said Conan to go to Rome to fetch the forenamed

Maurice according to his commission and instruction in that behalfe
[Sidenote: Maximianus commeth into Britaine.]
receiued, came to Rome, and declared his message in such
effectuall sort, that Maximianus consented to go with him into
Britaine, and so taking with him a conuenient number, set forward, and
did so much by his iournies, that finallie he landed here in Britaine.
And notwithstanding that Conan Meridoc past not so much to haue béene
dooing with him, for malice that he conceiued towards him, because
he saw that by his meanes he should be put beside the crowne, yet at
length was Maximianus safelie brought to the kings presence, and of
him honorablie receiued, and finallie the mariage was knit vp, and
solemnized in all princelie maner. Shortlie after, Octauius
[Sidenote: Octauius departeth this life.]
departed out of this life, after he had reigned the terme of fiftie
and foure yeares, as Fabian gathereth by that which diuers authors
doo write, how he reigned till the daies that Gratian and Valentinian
ruled the Roman empire which began to gouerne in the yeare of
[Sidenote: 382.]
our Lord (as he saith) 382, which is to be vnderstood of Gratian his
reigne after the deceasse of his vncle Valens, for otherwise a doubt
maie rise, because Valentine the father of Gratian admitted the said
Gratian to the title of Augustus in the yeare of our Lord 351.

But to leaue the credit of the long reigne of Octauius, with all his
and others gouernement and rule ouer the Britains since the time of
Constantius, vnto our British and Scotish writers, let vs make an end
with the gouernement of that noble emperour Constantine, and assured
branch of the Britains race, as borne of that worthie ladie the
empresse Helen, daughter to Coell earle of Colchester, and after king
of Britaine (as our histories doo witnesse.) Vnto the which empresse
Constantine bare such dutifull reuerence, that he did not onelie
honour hir with the name of empresse, but also made hir as it were
partaker with him of all his wealth, and in manie things was led and
ruled by hir vertuous and godlie admonitions, to the aduancement
of Gods honour, and maintenance of those that professed the true
christian religion. For the loue that she bare vnto Colchester and
London, she walled them about, and caused great bricke and huge tiles
to be made for the performance of the same, whereof there is great
store to be séene euen yet to this present, both in the walls of
[Sidenote: _Nicephorus_. The empresse Helen departeth this life.]
the towne and castell of Colchester, as a testimonie of the
woorkemanship of those daies. She liued 79 yeares, and then departed
this life about the 21 yeare of hir sonnes reigne. First she was
buried at Rome without the walls of the citie with all funerall pompe,
[Sidenote: 340.]
as to hir estate apperteined: but after hir corps was remoued and
brought to Constantinople, where it was eftsoones interred. Hir
[Sidenote: The deceasse of the emperour Constantine.]
sonne the emperour Constantine liued till about the yeare of Christ
340, and then deceassed at Nicomedia in Asia, after he had ruled the
empire 32 yeares and od moneths.

We find not in the Romane writers of anie great stur here in Britaine
during his reigne more than the British and Scotish writers haue
recorded: so that after Traherne had reduced this land to quietnesse,
it maie be supposed, that the Britains liued in rest vnder his
gouernement, and likewise after vnder his sonnes that succéeded him in
[Sidenote: 360.]
the empire, till about the yeare 360, at what time the Picts and
Scots inuaded the south parts of the land.

But now to end with Octauius, that the christian faith remained still
in Britaine, during the supposed time of this pretended kings reigne,
it maie appeare, in that amongst the 36 prouinces, out of the which
there were assembled aboue 300 bishops in the citie of Sardica
[Sidenote: _Synodus anno_. 354]
in Dacia, at a synod held there against the Eusebians, Britaine is
numbred by Athanasius in his second apologie to be one. And againe,
the said Athanasius in an epistle which he writeth to the emperour
Iouinianus reciteth, that the churches in Britaine did consent with
the churches of other nations in the confession of faith articuled
in the Nicene councell. Also mention is made by writers of certeine
godlie & learned men, which liued in offices in the church in those
daies, as Restitutus bishop of London, which went ouer to the synod
held at Arles in France, and also one Kibius Corinnius sonne to
Salomon duke of Cornewall, and bishop of Anglesey, who instructed the
people that inhabited the parts now called Northwales, and them of
Anglesey aforesaid verie diligentlie.

But now to speake somewhat of things chancing in Britaine about this
season (as we find recorded by the Romane writers) some trouble was
likelie to haue growne vnto the Britains by receiuing certeine men of
warre that fled out of Italie into Britaine, whome the emperour
[Sidenote: _Marcellinus. lib._ 14.]
Constantius would haue punished, because they had taken part with
[Sidenote: Paulus a notarie.]
Maxentius his aduersarie. Paulus a Spaniard and notarie was sent
ouer by him, with commission to make inquirie of them, and to sée them
brought to light to answere their transgressions: which Paulus began
to deale roughlie in the matter, whereof he was called Catera, and to
rage against the Britains and partakers with the fugitiues, in that
they had receiued and mainteined them, as he alledged: but in the
[Sidenote: Martinus lieutenant.]
end being certified by Martinus the lieutenant of their innocencie,
and fearing least his extreame rigour might alienate the hearts of the
inhabitants altogither, and cause them to withdraw their obedience
from the Romane empire, he turned the execution of his furie from them
vnto the Romans, and made hauocke of those that he suspected, till the
said Martinus fell at square with him, & thinking on a time to kill
him, he drew his sword and smote at him. But such was his age and
weakenesse, that he was not able to kill him or giue him anie deadlie
wound: wherefore he turned the point of his sword against himselfe,
and so ended his life, being contented rather to die than sée his
countriemen and subiects of the empire so to be abused. After this the
said Paulus returned backe againe into Italie from whence he came,
after whose departure, it was not long yer he also was slaine, and
then all the Scots and Picts sore disquieted the Romane subiects,
for the suppressing of whose attempts Lupicinus was sent ouer out of
Gallia by Iulianus, as shall be declared out of Amianus Marcellinus,
after we haue first shewed what we find written in our owne writers
concerning the Scots and Picts, who now began to rob and spoile the
British inhabitants within the Romane prouinces here in this Ile, and
that euen in most outragious maner.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Maximianus or Maximus gouerneth this Ile, why writers speake ill
of him, strife betwixt him and Conan duke of Cornewall, Maximus is
proclaimed emperour in Britaine, he transporteth the British youth
seruiceable for warres into France, little Britaine in France why
so called, eleuen thousand maids sent thither to match with Conans
people, whereof some were drowned, and other some murthered in the
way by Guanius king of Hunnes and Melga king of Picts, they flie into
Ireland, murther requited with murther, the words of Gyldas concerning


After the deceasse of Octauius or Octauian (as the old English
chronicle nameth him) Maximianus or Maximus (as the Romane writers
call him) began to rule the Britains in the yéere of our Lord 383, he
was the sonne of one Leonine, and coosen germane to Constantine the
great, a valiant personage, & hardie of stomach: but yet because he
was cruell of nature, and (as Fabian saith) somewhat persecuted the
christians, he was infamed by writers: but the chiefe cause why he was
euil reported, was for that he slue his souereigne lord the emperour
Gratianus, as after shall appeare, for otherwise he is supposed
woorthie to haue had the rule of the empire committed to his hands in
ech respect. Betwixt him and the aboue-named Conan Meridoc duke of
Cornewall, chanced strife and debate, so that Conan got him into
Scotland, and there purchasing aid, returned, and comming ouer
Humber, wasted the countrie on ech side. Maximianus thereof hauing
aduertisement, raised his power and went against him, and so fighting
with him diuers battels, sometime departed awaie with victorie, and
sometime with losse. At length through mediation of friends, a peace
was made betwixt them. Finallie this Maximianus, or (as the Romane
histories say) Maximus, was by the souldiers chosen and proclaimed
emperour here in Britaine: although some write that this was doone in

[Sidenote: _Gal. Mon. Fabian. Caxton. Matth. West._ The British youth
led forth of the realme by Maximianus. Britaine in France.]
After he had taken vpon him the imperiall dignitie, vpon desire to
haue inlarged his dominion, he assembled togither all the chosen youth
of this land méet to doo seruice in the warres, with the which he
passed ouer into France, & there (as our writers record) he first
subdued the countrie ancientlie called Armorica, and slue in battell
the king thereof called Imball. This doone he gaue the countrie vnto
Conan Meridoc, which was there with him, to hold the same of him, and
of the kings of great Britaine for euer. He also commanded that the
said countrie from thencefoorth should be called litle Britaine, and
so was the name changed. What people soeuer inhabited there before,
the ancient name argueth that they were rather Britains than anie
other: for Armorica in the British toong signifieth as much as a
countrie lieng vpon the sea.

Conan then placing himselfe and his Britains in that quarter of
Gallia, auoided all the old inhabitants, peopling that countrie onelie
with Britains, which abhorring to ioine themselues with women borne in
Gallia, Conan was counselled to send into Britaine for maids to be
[Sidenote: Dionethius duke of Cornwall.]
coupled with his people in mariage. Herevpon a messenger was
dispatched vnto Dionethus at that time duke of Cornwall, and gouernour
of Britaine vnder Maximianus, requiring him to send ouer into
[Sidenote: Maids sent foorth.]
little Britaine 11000 maids, that is to say, 8000 to be bestowed vpon
the meaner sort of Conans people, and 3000 to be ioined in mariage
with the nobles and gentlemen. Dionethus at Conans request, assembled
the appointed number of maids, and amongst them he also appointed his
daughter Vrsula, a ladie of excellent beautie, to go ouer and to be
giuen in mariage to the foresaid Conan Meridoc, as he had earnestlie

[Sidenote: Vrsula the daughter of Dionethus.]
These number of maids were shipped in Thames, and passing forward
toward Britaine, were by force of weather and rage of wind scattered
abroad, and part of them drowned, and the residue (among whom was the
foresaid Vrsula) were slaine by Guanius king of the Hunnes, and Melga
king of the Picts, into whose hands they fell, the which Guanius and
Melga were sent by the emperour Gracian to the sea coasts of Germanie,
to oppresse and subdue all such as were friends and mainteiners of the
part of Maximianus. We find in some bookes, that there were sent ouer
at that time 51000 maids, that is to say, 11000 gentlewomen, and 40000

[Sidenote: Guanius and Melga.]
After that Guanius and Melga had murthered the foresaid virgins,
they entred into the north parts of Britaine, where the Scots now
inhabit, and began to make sore warre on the Britains, whereof when
Maximus was aduertised, he sent into Britaine one Gratianus with thrée
legions of souldiers, who bare himselfe so manfullie against the
enimies, that he constreined the said Guanius and Melga to flie out of
the land, and to withdraw into Ireland. In this meane while, Maximus
hauing slaine the emperor Gratian at Lions in France, and after
entring into Italie, was slaine himselfe at Aquilia (after he had
gouerned the Britains eight yéeres) by the emperour Theodosius, who
came in aid of Valentinian, brother to the said emperor Gratian, as ye
may find in the abridgement of the histories of Italie.

¶ But here yet before we make an end with this Maximus or Maximianus,
I haue thought good to set downe the words which we find in Gyldas,
where he writeth of the same Maximus, vndoubtedlie a Britaine
[Sidenote: Consobrinus Helenæ imperatricis.]
borne, nephue to the empresse Helen, and begotten by a Romane. "At
length (saith Gyldas) the spring of tyrants budding vp, and now
increasing into an huge wood, the Ile being called after the name of
Rome, but holding neither maners nor lawes according to that name, but
rather casting the same from it, sendeth foorth a branch of hir most
bitter planting, to wit Maximus, accompanied with a great number of
warriors to gard him, and apparelled in the imperiall robes which he
neuer ware as became him, nor put them on in lawfull wise, but (after
the custome of tyrants) was put into them by the mutining souldiers:
which Maximus at the first by craftie policie rather than by true
manhood winding in (as nets of his periurie and false suggestion)
vnto his wicked gouernement the countries & prouinces next adioining,
against the imperiall state of Rome, stretching one of his wings into
Spaine, and the other into Italie, placed the throne of his most
vniust empire at Trier, and shewed such rage in his wood dealing
against his souereigne lords, that the one of the lawfull emperours he
expelled out of Rome, and the other he bereft of his most religious
and godlie life. Now without long tariance, compassed about with
such a furious and bold gard as he had got togither, at the citie
of Aquilia he loseth his wicked head, which had cast downe the most
honourable heads of all the world from their kingdome and empire.

"From thencefoorth Britaine being depriued of all hir warlike
souldiers and armies, of hir gouernors also (though cruell) and of
an huge number of hir youth (the which following the steps of the
foresaid tyrant, neuer returned home againe) such as remained being
vtterlie vnskilfull in feats of warre, were troden downe by two
nations of beyond the seas, the Scots from the west, and the Picts
[Sidenote: Scotorum à circio, Pictorum ab aquilone.]
from the north, and as men thus quite dismaid, lament their miserable
case, not knowing what else to doo for the space of manie yéeres
togither. By reason of whose gréeuous inuasion and cruell oppression
wherewith she was miserablie disquieted, she sendeth hir ambassadors
vnto Rome, making lamentable sute euen with teares to haue some power
of men of warre sent to defend hir against the enimies, promising to
be true subiects with all faithfulnes of mind, if the enimie might be
kept off and remooued."

¶ Thus farre Gyldas, and more, as in place hereafter you shall find

       *       *       *       *       *

_What Gratianus it was that was sent ouer from Rome into Britaine by
Maximus, in what estimation the British souldiers haue beene, the
priuie treason of Andragatius whereby Gratian came to his end: Maximus
and his sonne Victor doo succeed him in the empire, they are both
slaine, Marcus the Romane lieutenant sucéeding them is murthered,
Gratianus also his successour hath the same end, the election of
Constantine a Britaine borne, his praise and dispraise reported by
writers, he goeth into France, maketh his sonne Constance partaker
with him of the empire, a sharpe incounter betwixt his power and two
brethrens that had the keeping of the Pyrenine hils, the issue of the


But now where the British histories, and such of our English writers
as follow them, make mention of one Gratianus a Romane, sent ouer with
thrée legions of souldiers by Maximus, as before ye haue heard: we
maie suppose that it was Gratianus the Britaine, that afterwards
vsurped the imperiall dignitie héere in Britaine, in the daies of the
[Sidenote: _Sextus Aurelius_]
emperour Honorius. For it standeth neither with the concurrence of
time nor yet with reason of the historie, that it should be Gratianus,
surnamed Funarius, father to Valentinian, and grandfather to the
emperour Gratianus, against whome Maximus rebelled. And yet I remember
not that anie of the Romane writers maketh mention of anie other
Gratianus, being a stranger, that should be sent hither as lieutenant
to gouerne the Romane armie, except of the foresaid Gratianus
[Sidenote: _Lib. 30_.]
Funarius, who (as appéereth by Amian. Marcellinus) was generall of
the Romane armie héere in this Ile, and at length being discharged,
returned home into Hungarie (where he was borne) with honour, and
there remaining in rest, was at length spoiled of his goods by the
emperour Constantius as confiscate, for that in time of the ciuill
warres he had receiued Maxentius, as he past thorough his countrie.

But let vs grant, that either Gratianus the Britaine, or some other of
that name, was sent ouer into Britaine (as before is said) by Maximus,
least otherwise some errour may be doubted in the writers of the
British histories, as hauing happilie mistaken the time and matter,
bringing Gratianus Funarius to serue vnder Maximus, where peraduenture
that which they haue read or heard of him, chanced long before that
time by them suppposed: and so thorough mistaking the thing, haue made
a wrong report, where neuerthelesse it standeth with great likelihood
of truth, that some notable seruice of chiualrie was atchiued by the
same Gratianus Funarius whilest he remained héere in this Ile, if the
truth might be knowne of that which hath béene written by authors, and
happilie by the same Am. Marcellinus, if his first thirtéene bookes
might once come to light and be extant.

But now to end with Maximus. William of Malmesburie (as ye haue heard)
writeth, that not Maximus, but rather Constantine the great first
peopled Armorica: but yet he agréeth, that both Maximus, and also
Constantinus the vsurper, of whome after ye shall heare, led with them
a great number of the Britains out of this land, the which Maximus
or Maximianus and Constantinus afterwards being slaine, the one by
Theodosius, and the other by Honorius, the Britains that followed them
to the warres, part of them were killed, and the residue escaping by
flight, withdrew vnto the other Britains which Constantine the great
had first placed in Armorica. And so when the tyrants had left none in
the countrie but rude people, nor anie in the townes but such as were
giuen to slouth and gluttonie, Britaine being void of all aid of hir
valiant youth, became a prey to hir next neighbours the Scots and

Héere is yet to be considered, in what price the souldiers of the
British nation were had in those daies, with whose onelie puissance
Maximus durst take vpon him to go against all other the forces of the
whole Romane empire: and how he prospered in that dangerous aduenture,
it is expressed sufficientlie in the Romane histories, by whose report
[Sidenote: _W.H._ out of _Paulus Diaco. lib. 12. & alijs_.]
it appéereth, that he did not onlie conquer all the hither parts of
France and Germanie, namelie on this side the Rhine, but also found
meanes to intrap the emperour Gratian by this kind of policie. He had
a faithfull friend called Andragatius, who was admirall of the seas
perteining to the empire. It was therefore agréed betwixt them, that
this Andragatius (with a chosen companie of the armie) should be
carried in secret wise in a coch toward Lions, as if it had béene
[Sidenote: _Tripart. hist. lib. 9. cap. 21_.]
Constantia Posthumia the empresse, wife to the emperour Gratian,
bruting abroad there withall, that the said empresse was comming
forwards on hir waie to Lions, there to méet with hir husband, for
that vpon occasion she was verie desirous to commune with him about
certeine earnest businesse.

When Gratian heard héereof, as one mistrusting no such dissimulation,
he made hast to meete his wife, and comming at length without anie
great gard about him, as one not in doubt of anie treason, approched
the coch, where supposing to find his wife, he found those that
streightwaies murthered him: & so was he there dispatched quite of
life by the said Andragatius, who leapt foorth of the coch to woorke
that feate when he had him once within his danger.

Thus did the emperour Gratian finish his life in the 29 yéere of his
[Sidenote: 383.]
age, on the 25 of August, in the yéere of Christ 383, and then
died. Maximus succéeded him (making his sonne Flauius Victor
[Sidenote: This Flauius Victor he begat of his wife Helen the daughter
of Eudes. _H. Lhoyd_.]
Nobilissimus his assistant in the empire) reigning fiue yéeres and two
daies. In the beginning of his reigne Valentinian the yoonger made
great suit to him to haue his fathers bodie, but it would not be
granted. Afterwards also Maximus was earnestlie requested to come to
an enteruiew with the same Valentinian, who promised him not onelie
a safe conduct, but also manie other beneficiall good turnes beside.
Howbeit Maximus durst not put himselfe in anie such hazard, but rather
ment to pursue Valentinian as an vsurper, and so at length chased him
into Slauonie, where he was driuen to such a streight, that if
[Sidenote: Valentinian put in danger by Maximus.]
Theodosius had not come to releeue him, Maximus had driuen him thence
also, or else by slaughter rid him out of the waie.

But when Maximus thought himselfe most assured, and so established in
the empire, as he doubted no perils, he liued carelesse of his owne
safegard, and therfore dismissed his British souldiers, who retiring
into the northwest parts of Gallia, placed themselues there
among their countriemen, which were brought ouer by the emperour
[Sidenote: _Eutropius_. 388.]
Constantius, whilest Maximus passing the residue of his time
in delights and pleasures, was surprised in the end and slaine by
Theodosius néere vnto Aquilia, the 27 of August, in the yéere of Grace
388, and in the beginning of the sixt yéere of his reigne, or rather
vsurpation, as more rightlie it maie be tearmed. His sonne Flauius
Victor surnamed Nobilissimus was also dispatched and brought to his
end, not farre from the place where his father was slaine, by the
[Sidenote: Arbogastes.]
practise of one Arbogastes a Goth, which Flauius Victor was by the
said Maximus made regent of the Frankeners, and partaker (as before is
said) with him in the empire.

After this, the Ile of Britaine remained in méetlie good quiet by the
space of twentie yéeres, till one Marcus (that was then legat, or
as we maie call him lord lieutenant or deputie of Britaine for the
Romans) was by the souldiers héere proclaimed emperour against
Honorius, which Marcus was soone after killed in a tumult raised among
[Sidenote: Gratianus a Britaine. He reigned foure yéeres if we shal
beléeue the British historie.]
the people within few daies after his vsurpation began. Then one
Gratianus a Britaine borne succéeded in his place, who was also slaine
in the fourth moneth, after he had taken vpon him the imperiall
ornaments. The souldiers not yet heerewith pacified, procéeded to the
election of an other emperour, or rather vsurper, and so pronounced a
noble gentleman called Constantine, borne also in Britaine, to be
[Sidenote: 409.]
emperour, who tooke that honour vpon him in the 409 yéere after the
birth of our Sauiour, continuing his reigne by the space of two yéeres
and od moneths, as the Romane histories make mention. Some report
this Constantine to be of no great towardlie disposition woorthie to
gouerne an empire, and that the souldiers chose him rather for the
name sake, bicause they would haue another Constantine, more than for
anie vertues or sufficient qualities found in his person. But other
commend him both for manhood and wisedome, wherein to speake a truth,
he deserued singular commendation, if this one note of vsurpation of
the imperiall dignitie had not stained his other noble qualities. But
heerein he did no more than manie other would haue doone, neither yet
after his inuesture did so much as was looked for at his hands.

Constantine being placed in the imperiall throne, gathered an armie
with all possible indeuour, purposing out of hand to go ouer therwith
into France, and so did, thinking thereby to win the possession of
that countrie out of the hands of Honorius, or at the least to worke
so, as he should not haue the souldiers and people there to be against
him, if he missed to ioine in league with the Suabeiners, Alanes, and
Vandales, which he sought to performe. But in the end, when neither
of these his deuises could take place, he sent ouer for his sonne
Constans (whome in his absence his aduersaries had shorne a moonke) &
making him partaker with him in the empire, caused him to bring ouer
with him another armie, which vnder the conduct of the same Constans
he sent into Spaine to bring that countrie vnder his obeisance.

This Constans therefore comming vnder the passages that lead ouer the
Pyrenine mountains, Dindimus and Verianianus two brethren, vnto whome
[Sidenote: His souldiers were Picts, and placed among other men of
warre that serued vnder the ensignes of the empire, and named after
Honorius, Honoriciani. _Blondus_.]
the keeping of those passages was committed to defend the same
against the Vandals, and all other enimies of the empire, were readie
to resist him with their seruants and countriemen that inhabited
therabouts, giuing him a verie sharpe incounter, and at the first
putting him in great danger of an ouerthrow, but yet at length by the
valiant prowes of his British souldiers, Constans put his aduersaries
to flight, and killed the two capteins, with diuers other men of
name, that were partakers with him in the necessarie defense of that
countrie against the enimies. When Constans had thus repelled those
that resisted him, the custodie of the passages in the Pyrenine
mounteins was committed vnto such bands of Picts and other, as were
appointed to go with him about the atchiuing of this enterprise, who
hauing the possession of those streicts or passages in their hands,
gaue entrie vnto other barbarous nations to inuade Spaine, who being
once entered, pursued the former inhabitants with fire and swoord,
setled them selues in that countrie, and droue out the Romans.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Honorius sendeth earle Constantius to expell Constantine out of
Gallia, the end of Constantinus the father and Constans the sonne,
the valure and prowesse of the British souldiers, the British writers
reprooued of necligences for that they haue inserted fables
into their woorkes, whereas they might haue deposed matters of truth_.


The emperour Honorius, perceiuing the réeling state of the empire,
determined, foorthwith to recouer it, before it fell altogither
into ruine: and therefore sent one Constantius an earle to driue
Constantine out of Gallia, which he accordinglie performed: for after
certeine bickerings, he slue the said Constantine at Arles, although
not without great bloudshed. He pursued also the residue of the
Britains, driuing them to the verie sea coasts, where they shrowded
themselues among the other Britains, that before were setled in the
countrie there, ancientlie called (as before we said) Armorica, that
is, a region lieng on the sea coast: for _Ar_ in the British toong
signifieth vpon; and _Moure_, perteining to the sea. And as this
Constantine the father was slaine by Constantius, so was Constans the
sonne killed at Vienna by one of his owne capteines named Gerontius.
Whereby it came to passe, that Honorius shortlie after, hauing thus
obteined the victorie of both these vsurpers, recouered the Ile, but
yet not till the yeare next following, and that by the high industrie
and great diligence of that valiant gentleman earle Constantius. The
slaughter of Constantine & his sonne happened in the 1 yeare of the
297 Olympiad, 465 after the comming of Cesar, 1162 after the building
of Rome, the dominicall letter being A, and the golden number 13, so
[Sidenote: 411.]
that the recouering of the Iland fell in the yeare of our Lord

Here also is eftsoones to be considered the valure of the British
souldiers, who following this last remembred Constantine the vsurper,
did put the Romane state in great danger, and by force brake through
into Spaine, vanquishing those that kept the streicts of the mounteins
betwixt Spaine and Gallia, now called France, an exploit of no small
consequence, sith thereby the number of barbarous nations got frée
passage to enter into Spaine, whereof insued manie battels, sacking of
cities and townes, and wasting of the countries, accordinglie as the
furious rage of those fierce people was mooued to put their crueltie
in practise.

¶ If therefore the Britaine writers had considered and marked the
valiant exploits and noble enterprisee which the Brittish aids, armies
and legions atchiued in seruice of the Romane emperours (by whome
whilest they had the gouernement ouer this Ile, there were at sundrie
times notable numbers conueied foorth into the parties of beyond the
seas, as by Albinus and Constantius, also by his sonne Constantine the
great, by Maximus, and by this Constantine, both of them vsurpers) if
(I saie) the British writers had taken good note of the numbers of the
British youth thus conueied ouer from hence, & what notable exploits
they boldlie attempted, & no lesse manfullie atchiued, they néeded not
to haue giuen eare vnto the fabulous reports forged by their Bards,
of Arthur and other their princes, woorthie in déed of verie high

And pitie it is, that their fame should be brought by such meanes out
of credit, by the incredible and fond fables which haue béene deuised
of their acts so vnlike to be true, as the tales of Robin Hood, or the
gests written by Ariost the Italian in his booke intituled "Orlando
furioso," sith the same writers had otherwise true matter inough to
write of concerning the worthie feats by their countriemen in those
daies in forren parts boldlie enterprised, and no lesse valiantlie
accomplished, as also the warres which now and then they mainteined
against the Romans here at home, in times when they felt themselues
oppressed by their tyrannicall gouernment, as by that which is written
before of Caratacus, Voadicia, Cartimandua, Venusius, Galgagus, or
Galdus (as some name him) and diuers other, who for their noble
valiancies deserue as much praise, as by toong or pen is able to be
expressed. But now to returne vnto the British historie: we will
procéed in order with their kings as we find them in the same
mentioned, and therefore we haue thought good to speake somewhat
further of Gratian, from whome we haue digressed.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Gratians rough regiment procureth his owne destruction, the comming
of his two brethren Guanius and Melga with their armies, the Scots
and Picts plague the Britains, they send for aid to Rome, Valentinian
sendeth Gallio Rauenna to releeue them, the Romans refuse anie longer
to succour the Britains, whom they taught how to make armour and
weapons, the Scots and Picts enter afresh into Britaine and preuaile,
the Britains are brought to extreme miserie, ciuill warres among them,
and what mischiefe dooth follow therevpon, their lamentable letter to
Actius for succour against their enimies, their sute is denied, at
what time the Britains ceased to be tributaries to the Romans, they
send ambassadors to the K. of Britaine in France, and obteine their


[Sidenote: GRATIANUS.]
Gratianus then, whome Maximus or Maximinus had sent into Britaine
(as before ye haue heard) hearing that his maister was slaine, tooke
[Sidenote: 390.]
vpon him the rule of this our Britaine, and made himselfe king
therof, in the yeare 390. He was a Britaine borne, as Polydor writeth,
coniecturing so, by that he is named of authors to be Municeps, that
[Sidenote: Of the Romane souldiers as _Blondus_ saith.]
is to saie, a frée man of the countrie or citie where he inhabited.
For his sternenesse and rough gouernement, he was of the Britains (as
the histories alledge) slaine and dispatched out of the waie, after
he had reigned the space of foure yeares, or rather foure moneths, as
should séeme by that which is found in autentike writers. Then the
[Sidenote: _Galfrid. Caxton_.]
forenamed kings Guantius and Melga, which (as some write) were
brethren, returned into this land with their armies increased with
new supplies of men of warre, as Scots, Danes, the Norwegians, and
destroied the countrie from side to side. For the Britains in this
season were sore inféebled, and were not able to make anie great
[Sidenote: _Galfrid. Matth. West. Caxton_.]
numbers of souldiers, by reason that Maximus had led foorth of the
land the floure and chiefest choise of all the British youth into
Gallia, as before ye haue heard.

[Sidenote: _Gyldas_.]
Gyldas maketh no mention of these two kings Guanius and Melga
of the Hunnes, but rehearsing this great destruction of the land,
declareth (as before ye haue heard) that the Scots and Picts were
the same that did all the mischiefe, whome he calleth two nations of
beyond the seas, the Scots comming out of the northwest, and the Picts
out of the northeast, by whome (as he saith) the land was ouerrun, and
brought vnder foot manie yeares after. Therefore the Britains being
thus vexed, spoiled, and cruellie persecuted by the Scots and Picts
(if we shall so take them) sent messengers with all spéed vnto Rome
to make sute for some aid of men of war to be sent into Britaine.
Wherevpon immediatlie a legion of souldiers was sent thither in the
[Sidenote: 414.]
yéere 414, which easilie repelled the enimies, and chased them backe
with great slaughter, to the great comfort of the Britains, the which
by this meanes were deliuered from danger of vtter destruction, as
they thought.

But the Romans being occasioned to depart againe out of the land,
appointed the Britains to make a wall (as had béene aforetime by the
emperours Adrian, Antoninus and Seuerus) ouerthwart the countrie
[Sidenote: _Beda_ and _Polychron._]
from sea to sea, stretching from Penuelton vnto the citie of Aclud,
whereby the enimies might be staid from entring the land: but this
wall being made of turfs and sods, rather than with stones, after
the departure of the Romans was easilie ouerthrowne by the Scots
and Picts, which eftsoones returned to inuade the confines of the
Britains, and so entring the countrie, wasted and destroied the places
[Sidenote: _Beda_ and _Polychron._]
before them, according to their former custome. Herevpon were
messengers with most lamentable letters againe dispatched towards Rome
for new aid against those cruell enimies, with promise, that if the
Romans would now in this great necessitie helpe to deliuer the
land, they should be assured to find the Britains euermore obedient
subiects, and redie at their commandement. Valentinianus (pitieng
[Sidenote: _Blondus_. Gallio Ravenna sent into Brittaine.]
the case of the poore Britains) appointed another legion of souldiers
(of the which one Gallio of Rauenna had the leading) to go to their
succours, the which arriuing in Britaine set on the enimies, and
giuing them the ouerthrow, slue a great number of them, and chased the
residue out of the countrie.

The Romans thus hauing obteined the victorie, declared to the
Britains, that from thencefoorth they would not take vpon them for
euerie light occasion so painefull a iournie, alledging how there was
no reason why the Romane ensignes, with such a number of men of warre,
should be put to trauell so far by sea and land, for the repelling and
beating backe of a sort of scattering rouers and pilfring théeues.
Wherfore they aduised the Britains to looke to their dueties, and like
men to indeuour themselues to defend their countrie by their owne
force from the enimies innasions. And because they iudged it might be
an helpe to the Britains, they set in hand to build a wall yet once
againe ouerthwart the Ile, in the same place where the emperour
[Sidenote: A wall built overthwart the Iland. _Beda_.]
Seuerus caused his trench and rampire to be cast. This wall which the
Romans now built with helpe of the Britains, was 8 foot in bredth and
12 in length, trauersing the land from east to west, & was made of

[Sidenote: _Gyldas and Beda_.]
After that this wall was finished, the Romans exhorted the
Britains to plaie the men, and shewed them the way how to make armor &
weapons. Besides this, on the coast of the east sea where their ships
lay at rode, & where it was douted that the enimies would land, they
caused towers to be erected, with spaces betwixt, out of the which the
[Sidenote: _Gyldas_.]
seas might be discouered. These things ordered, the Romans bad the
Britains farewell, not minding to returne thither againe. The Romans
then being gon out of the land, the Scots and Picts knowing thereof,
by & by came againe by sea, & being more emboldened than before,
bicause of the deniall made by the Romans to come any more to the
succor of the Britains, they tooke into possession all the north and
vttermost bounds of the Ile, euen vnto the foresaid wall, therein
[Sidenote: This chanced in the yere 43. as _M. W._ saith.]
to remaine as inhabitants. And wheras the Britains got them to their
wall to defend the same, that the enimies should not passe further
into the countrie, they were in the end beaten from it, and diuers of
them slaine, so that the Scots and Picts entred vpon them and pursued
them in more cruell maner than before, so that the Britains being
chased out of their cities, townes, and dwelling houses, were
constreined to flie into desert places, and there to remaine and liue
after the maner of sauage people, and in the end began to rob and
spoile one another, so to auoid the danger of staruing for lacke of
food: and thus at the last the countrie was so destroied and wasted,
that there was no other shift for them that was left aliue to liue by,
except onelie by hunting and taking of wild beasts and foules. And
[Sidenote: _Hector Boet._ Rebellion.]
to augment their miserie, the commons imputing the fault to rest in
the lords and gouernors, arose against them in armes, but were
vanquished and easilie put to flight at two seuerall times, being
beaten downe and slaine (through lacke of skill) in such numbers,
especiallie the latter time, that the residue which escaped, withdrew
into the craggie mounteins, where within the bushes and caues they
kept themselues close, sometimes comming downe and fetching away from
the heards of beasts and flocks of shéepe which belonged to the nobles
and gentlemen of the countrie, great booties to relieue them withall.
But at length oppressed with extreme famine, when neither part could
long remaine in this state, as néeding one anothers helpe, necessitie
[Sidenote: Ciuill warre decaied the force of the Britains. What
mischiefe follow of ciuill warres.]
made peace betwixt the lords and commons of the land, all iniuries
being pardoned and cléerelie forgiuen. This ciuill warre decaied the
force of the Britains, little lesse than the tyrannicall practises of
Maximus, for by the auoiding of the commons thus out of their houses,
the ground laie vntilled, whereof insued such famine for the space of
thrée yéeres togither, that a woonderfull number of people died for
want of sustenance.

Thus the Britains being brought generallie into such extreame miserie,
[Sidenote: Actius.]
they thought good to trie if they might purchase some aid of that
noble man Actius, which at that time remained in France as yet called
Gallia, gouerning the same as lieutenant vnder the emperor Honorius:
and herevpon taking counsell togither, they wrote a letter to him, the
tenor whereof insueth.

_To Actius thrise consull_.

"The lamentable request of vs the Britains, beseeching you of aid
to bee ministred vnto the prouince of the Romane empire, vnto our
countrie, vnto our wiues and children at this present, which stand in
most extreame perill. For the barbarous people driue vs to the sea,
and the sea driueth vs backe vnto them againe. Hereof rise two kinds
of death, for either we are slaine, or drowned, and against such euils
haue we no remedie nor helpe at all. Therefore in respect of your
clemencie, succor your owne we most instantlie require you, &c."

Notwithstanding the Britains thus sought for aid at Actius hands as
[Sidenote: The Britains could get no aid fr[=o] the Romans.]
then the emperours lieutenant, yet could they get none; either
for that Actius would not, as he that passed litle how things went,
bicause he bare displeasure in his mind against Valentinian as then
emperor; or else for that he could not, being otherwise constreined to
imploie all his forces in other places against such barbarous nations
as then inuaded the Romane empire. And so by that means was Britaine
lost, and the tribute which the Britains were accustomed to pay to the
Romans ceassed, iust fiue hundred yéeres after that Iulius Cesar first
entred the Ile.

The Britains being thus put to their shifts, manie of them as
hunger-starued were constrained to yéeld themselues into the griping
hands of their enimies, whereas other yet kéeping within the
mounteins, woods and caues, brake out as occasion serued vpon their
aduersaries, and then first (saith Gyldas) did the Britains not
putting their trust in man but in God (according to the saieng of
Philo, Where mans helpe faileth, it is needfull that Gods helpe be
present) make slaughter of their enimies that had béene accustomed
[Sidenote: Punishment ceaseth, but sin increaseth.]
manie yéeres to rob and spoile them in maner as before is recited,
and so the bold attempts of the enimies ceassed for a time, but the
wickednesse of the British people ceassed not at all. The enimies
departed out of the land, but the inhabitants departed not from their
naughtie dooings, being not so readie to put backe the common enimies,
as to exercise ciuill warre and discord among themselues. The wicked
Irish people departed home, to make returne againe within a while
after. But the Picts settled themselues first at that season in the
vttermost bounds of the Ile, and there continued, making insurrections
oftentimes vpon their neighbours, and spoiling them of their goods.

[Sidenote: _Galfridus. Gyldas_ his words are to be considered.]
This with more also hath Gyldas, and likewise Beda written of this
great desolation of the British people: wherein if the words of Gyldas
be well weighed and considered, it maie lead vs to thinke, that the
Scots had no habitations here in Britaine, but onelie in Ireland, till
after this season, and that at this present time the Picts, which
before inhabited within the Iles of Orkenie, now placed themselues in
the north parts of Scotland, and after by processe of time came and
nestled themselues in Louthian, in the Mers, and other countries more
neere to our borders. But to procéed.

The British histories affirme, that whilest the Britains were thus
persecuted by these two most cruell and fierce nations the Scots and
Picts, the noble and chiefest men amongst them consulted togither,
[Sidenote: An ambassage sent from the Britains vnto Aldroenus king of
Britaine in France.]
& concluded to send an honorable ambassage vnto Aldroenus as then king
of little Britaine in Gallia, which Aldroenus was the fourth from
Conan Meridoc the first king there of the British nation. Of this
ambassage the archbishop of London named Guetheline or Gosseline was
appointed the chiefe and principall, who passing ouer into little
Britaine, and comming before the presence of Aldroenus, so declared
[Sidenote: Constantine the brother of Aldroenus]
the effect of his message, that his suit was granted. For
Aldroenus agréed to send his brother Constantine ouer into great
Britaine with a conuenient power, vpon condition, that the victorie
being obteined against the enimies, the Britains should make him king
of great Britaine.

¶ Thus it is apparent, that this land of Britaine was without anie
certeine gouernour (after that Gratian the vsurper was dispatched) a
number of yéeres togither, but how manie, writers in their account
[Sidenote: _Fabian_.]
do varie. Fabian deposeth by diuers coniecturs that the space betwixt
the death of Gratian, and the beginning of the reigne of the said
Constantine, brother to Aldroenus, continued nine and thirtie yéeres,
during which time the Britains were sore and miserablie afflicted
by the inuasions of the Scots and Picts, as before ye haue heard by
testimonies taken out of Beda, Gyldas, Geffrey of Monmouth, and other
writers both British and English.

       *       *       *       *       *

_What the Roman historiographer Marcellinus reporteth of the Scots,
Picts, and Britains vnder the emperour Iulianus, Valentinianus and
Valens, they send their vicegerents into Britaine, the disquietnesse
of that time, London called Augusta, the worthie exploits of
Theodosius in this Iland against the enimie, Valentinus a banished
malefactor deuiseth his destruction, he is taken and executed, he
reformeth manie disorders and inconueniences, the first entring of
the Saxons into Britaine, they are dawnted at the verie sight of the
Romane ensignes, the Saxons lieng in wait for their enimies are slaine
euerie mothers sonne_.


[Sidenote: Maximus.]
But now sith no mention is made of the Scots in our histories,
till the daies of Maximus the vsurper or tyrant, as some call him, who
began his reigne here in Britaine about the yéere of our Lord 383,
[Sidenote: 383.]
and that till after he had bereft the land of the chiefest forces
thereof, in taking the most part of the youth ouer with him: we find
not in the same histories of anie troubles wrought to the Britains by
that nation. Therefore we haue thought good héere to come backe to the
former times, that we may shew what is found mentioned in the Romane
histories, both before that time and after, as well concerning the
[Sidenote: _Ammianus Marcellinus lib._ 20. The emperor Iulianius.]
Scots and Picts, as also the Saxons, and especiallie in Ammianus
Marcellinus, where in the beginning of his twentith booke intreating
of the doings of the emperour Iulianus, he saith as followeth.

In this state stood things in Illyricum or Slauonia, and in the east
parts, at what time Constantius bare the office of consull the tenth
time, and Iulianus the third time, that is to say, in the yéere
[Sidenote: 360.]
of our Lord 360, when in Britaine quietnesse being disturbed by roads
[Sidenote: Scots and Picts trouble the state of this Ile.]
made by the Scots and Picts, which are wild and sauage people,
the frontiers of the countrie were wasted, and feare oppressed the
prouinces wearied with the heape of passed losses. The emperor [he
meaneth Iulianus] as then remaining at Paris, and hauing his mind
troubled with manie cares, doubted to go to the aid of them beyond the
sea, as we haue shewed that Constantius did, least he should leaue
them in Gallia without a ruler, the Almains being euen then prouoked
and stirred vp to crueltie and warre.

[Sidenote: Lupicinus sent into Britaine.]
He thought good therefore to send Lupicinus vnto these places to
bring things into frame and order, which Lupicinus was at that time
master of the armorie, a warlike person and skilfull in all points of
chiualrie, but proud and high-minded beyond measure, and such one as
it was doubted long whether he was more couetous or cruell. Herevpon
[Sidenote: Bataui now Hollanders.]
the said Lupicinus setting forward the light armed men of the
Heruli and Bataui, with diuers companies also of the people of Mesia
now called Bulgarie; when winter was well entred and come on, he came
himselfe to Bulleine, and there prouiding ships, and imbarking his
[Sidenote: Rutupis.]
men, when the wind serued his purpose, he transported ouer vnto
Sandwich, and so marched foorth unto London, from thence purposing to
set forward, as vpon aduise taken according to the qualitie of his
businesse he should thinke méet and expedient.

[Sidenote: Of the displacing of these men the learned may sée more in
_Am. Mar._]
In the meane time, whilest Lupicinus was busie here in Britaine
to represse the enimies, the emperour Constantius displaced certeine
officers, and among other he depriued the same Lupicinus of the office
of the master of the armorie, appointing one Gumobarius to succéed him
in that roome, before anie such thing was knowen in these parties. And
where it was doubted least that Lupicinus (if he had vnderstood so
much whilest he was yet in Britaine) would haue attempted some new
trouble, as he was a man of a stout and loftie mind, he was called
backe from thence, and withall there was sent a notarie vnto Bulleine,
to watch that none should passe the seas ouer into Britaine till
Lupicinus were returned: and so returning ouer from thence yer he
had anie knowledge what was doone by the emperour, he could make no
sturre, hauing no such assistants in Gallia, as it was thought he
might haue had in Britaine, if he should haue mooued rebellion there.

[Sidenote: _Lib._ 26.]
The same Marcellinus speaking of the doings about the time that
[Sidenote: _Ammianus Marcellinus lib._ 26.]
Valentinianus, being elected emperour, had admitted his brother
Valens as fellow with him in gouernement, hath these words. In this
season as though trumpets had blowne the sound to battell through out
the whole Romane empire, most cruell nations being stirred vp, inuaded
[Sidenote: The Almans. The Sarmatians. The Quadi Picts and Saxons.
Austorians. The Goths.]
the borders next adioining, the Almans wasted and destroied the
parts of Gallia and Rhetia, as the Sarmatians and Quadi did Paunonia,
the Picts, the Saxons, the Scots, and the Attacots vexed the Britains
with continuall troubles, and gréeuous damages; the Austorians and the
people of the Moores ouerran the countrie of Affrike more sharpelie
than in time past they had done; the pilfring troops of the Goths
spoiled Thracia; the king of Persia set in hand to subdue the
Armenians, and sought to bring them vnder his obeisance, hasting with
all spéed toward Numonia, pretending (though vniustlie) that now after
the deceasse of Iouinius, with whome he had contracted a league and
bond of peace, there was no cause of let what he ought not to recouer
those things, which (as he alledged) did belong to his ancestors: and
so foorth.

[Sidenote: _Lib._ 27.]
Moreouer, the same Marcellinus in another place writeth in this
wise, where he speaketh of the said Valentinianus. Departing therefore
from Amiens, and hasting to Trier, he was troubled with gréeuous newes
that were brought him, giuing him to vnderstand, that Britaine by
[Sidenote: Comes maritimi tractus.]
a conspiracie of the barbarous nations was brought to vtter pouertie,
that Nectaridus one of the emperours house earle of the sea coast,
hauing charge of the parties towards the sea, was slaine, and that
the generall Bulchobaudes was circumuented by traines of the enimies.
These things with great horrour being knowne, he sent Seuerus as then
[Sidenote: Comes domesticorum.]
erle, or (as I may call him lord steward of his houshold) to
reforme things that were amisse, if hap would so permit, who being
shortlie called backe, Iouinius going thither, and with spéed hasting
forward, sent for more aid and a great power of men, as the instant
necessitie then required. At length, for manie causes, and the same
greatlie to be feared, the which were reported and aduertised out
[Sidenote: Theodosius sent into Britaine.]
of that Ile, Theodosius was elected and appointed to go thither, a man
of approoued skill in warlike affaires, and calling togither an hardie
youthfull number of the legions and cohorts of men of warre, he went
foorth, no small hope being conceiued of his good spéed; the fame
wherof spred and went afore him.

A litle after, Marcellinus adding what people they were that troubled
[Sidenote: Picts diuided into two nations. Attacotti.]
the Britains in this wise, saith thus. This shall suffice to
be said, that in this season the Picts diuided into two nations
Dicalidones, and Victuriones, and in like maner the Attacotti a right
warlike nation, and the Scots wandering here and there, made fowle
woorke in places where they came. The confines of France were
disquieted by the Frankeners and Saxons borderers vnto them, euerie
one as they could breaking foorth, & dooing great harme by cruell
spoile, fire, and taking of prisoners. To withstand those dooings if
good fortune would giue him leaue, that most able capteine going
[Sidenote: Theodosius passeth ouer into Britaine.]
vnto the vttermost bounds of the earth, when he came to the coast of
Bullen which is seuered from the contrarie coast on the other side by
the sea, with a narrow streight, where sometime the water goeth verie
high and rough, & shortlie after becommeth calme & pleasant, without
hurt to those that passe the same, transporting ouer at leasure, he
arriued at Sandwich (or rather Richburrow) where there is a quiet road
[Sidenote: Bataui Hollanders.]
for vessels to lie at anchor. Wherevpon the Bataui and Heruli,
with the souldiers of the legions called Iouij, and Victores, being
companies that trusted well to their owne strength, marched foorth
[Sidenote: London called Augusta.]
& drew towards London, an ancient citie, which now of late hath bin
called Augusta. Herewith diuiding his armie into sundrie parts, he
set vpon the troops of his enimies as they were abroad to forrey the
countrie, pestered with burdens of their spoiles and pillage, and
spéedilie putting them to flight, as they were leading away those
prisoners which they had taken, with their booties of cattell, he
bereft them of their preie, the which the poore Britains that were
tributaries had lost. To be briefe, restoring the whole, except a
small portion bestowed amongst the wearie souldiers, he entred the
citie which before was opprest with troubles, but now suddenlie
refreshed, bicause there was hope of reliefe and assured preseruation.

After this, when Theodosius was comforted with prosperous successe to
attempt things of greater importance, and searching waies how with
good aduise to woorke suerlie: whilest he remained doubtfull what
would insue, he learned as well by the confession of prisoners taken,
as also by the information of such as were fled from the enimies, that
the scattered people of sundrie nations which with practise of great
crueltie were become fierce and vndanted, could not be subdued but by
policie secretlie practised, and sudden inuasions. At length therefore
setting foorth his proclamations, and promising pardon to those that
were gone awaie from their capteins or charge, he called them backe
againe to serue: and also those that by licence were departed and laie
scattered here and there in places abroad. By this meanes, when manie
were returned, he being on the one side earnestlie prouoked, and
[Sidenote: Theodosius requireth to haue Ciuilis sent to him.]
on the other holden backe with thoughtfull cares, required to haue
one Ciuilis by name sent to him to haue the rule of the prouinces in
Britaine in steed of the other gouernours, a man of sharpe wit,
[Sidenote: Dulcitius.]
and an earnest mainteiner of iustice. He likewise required that one
Dulcitius a capteine renowmed in knowledge of warlike affaires might
be sent ouer to him for his better asistance. These things were doone
in Britaine.

Againe, in his eight and twentith booke, the same Marcellinus reciting
further what the same Theodosius atchiued in Britaine, hath in effect
these words: Thedosius verelie a capteine of woorthie fame, taking
[Sidenote: London called Augusta.]
a valiant courage to him, and departing from Augusta, which men of old
time called London, with souldiers assembled by great diligence, did
succour and reléeue greatlie the decaied and troubled state of the
Britains, preuenting euerie conuenient place where the barbarous
people might lie in wait to doo mischiefe: and nothing he commanded
the meane souldiers to doo, but that whereof he with a chéerefull
mind would first take in hand to shew them an example. By this meanes
accomplishing the roome of a valiant souldier, and fulfilling the
charge of a noble capteine, he discomfited and put to flight sundrie
nations, whome presumption (nourished by securitie) emboldened to
inuade the Romane prouinces: and so the cities and castels that
had béene sore endamaged by manifold losses and displeasures, were
restored to their former state of wealth, the foundation of rest and
quietnesse being laid for a long season after to insue.

But as these things were a dooing, one wicked practise was in hand &
like to haue burst foorth, to the gréeuous danger of setting things in
broile, if it had not béene staied euen in the beginning of the
[Sidenote: Valentinus. Valeria now Stiermarke.]
first attempt. For there was one Valentinus, borne in the parties of
Valeria adioining to Pannonia, now called Stiermarke, a man of a proud
and loftie stomach, brother to the wife of Maximinus, which Valentinus
for some notable offense had béene banished into Britaine, where
the naughtie man that could not rest in quiet, deuised how by some
commotion he might destroy Theodosius, who as he saw was onelie able
to resist his wicked purposes. And going about manie things both
priuilie and apertlie, the force of his vnmeasurable desire to
mischiefe still increasing, he sought to procure aswell other that
were in semblable wise banished men, & inclined to mischiefe like him
selfe, as also diuers of the souldiers, alluring them (as the time
serued) with large promises of great wealth, if they would ioine with
him in that enterprise. But euen now in the verie nicke, when they
shuld haue gone in hand with their vngratious exploit, Theodosius
warned of their intent, boldlie aduanced himselfe to sée due
punishment executed on the offendors that were foorthwith taken and
knowne to be guiltie in that conspiracie.

[Sidenote: Dulcitius is appointed to put Valentinus to death.]
Theodosius committed Valentine with a few other of his trustie
complices vnto the capteine Dulcitius, commanding him to see them put
to death: but coniecturing by his warlike skill (wherein he passed all
other in those daies) what might follow, he would not in anie wise
haue anie further inquirie made of the other conspirators, least
through feare that might be spread abroad in manie, the troubles of
the prouinces now well quieted, should be againe reuiued. After
this, Theodosius disposing himselfe to redresse manie things as néed
required, all danger was quite remooued: so that it was most apparent,
that fortune fauored him in such wise, that she left him not destitute
of hir furtherance in anie one of all his attempts. He therefore
restored the cities & castels that were appointed to be kept with
garrisons, and the borders he caused to be defended and garded with
sufficient numbers to keépe watch and ward in places necessarie. And
hauing recouered the prouince which the enimies had gotten into their
possession, he so restored it to the former state, that vpon his
[Sidenote: A part of Britaine called Valentia.]
motion to haue it so, a lawfull gouernour was assigned to rule it,
and the name was changed, so as from thencefoorth it should be called
Valentia for the princes pleasure.

The Areani, a kind of men ordeined in times past by our elders (of
whome somewhat we haue spoken in the acts of the emperour Constance)
being now by little and little fallen into vices, he remooued from
their places of abiding, being openlie conuicted, that allured with
bribes and faire promises, they had oftentimes bewraied vnto the
barbarous nations what was doone among the Romans: for this was their
charge, to runne vp and downe by long iournies, and to giue warning to
our captains, what sturre the people of the next confines were about
to make.

[Sidenote: The praise of Theodosius.]
Theodosius therefore hauing ordered these & other like things,
most woorthilie & to his high fame, was called home to the emperours
court, who leauing the prouinces in most triumphant state, was highlie
renowmed for his often and most profitable victories, as if he had
béene an other Camillus or Cursor Papirius, and with the fauor and
loue of all men was conueied vnto the sea side; and passing ouer with
a gentle wind, came to the court, where he was receiued with great
gladnesse and commendation, being immediatlie appointed to succéed
in the roome of Valence Iouinus that was maister of the horsses.
Finallie, he was called by the emperour Gratianus, to be associated
with him in the imperiail estate, after the death of Valence,
[Sidenote: 379.]
in the yeare after the incarnation of our Sauior 379, and reigned
emperour, surnamed Thodosius the great, about 16 yeares and 2 daies.

[Sidenote: _Wil. Har._]
Hereto also maie that be applied which the foresaid Marcellinus
[Sidenote: _Walf. Lazi._]
writeth in the same booke, touching the inuasion of the Saxons,
the which (as Wolf. Lazius taketh it) entred then first into great
Britaine, but were repelled of the emperour Valentinianus the first,
[Sidenote: Seuerus.]
by the conduct and guiding of Seuerus. The same yéere (saith he)
that the emperours were the third time consuls, there brake forth a
multitude of Saxons, & passing the seas, entred stronglie into the
Romane confines: a nation fed oftentimes with the slaughter of our
[Sidenote: Nonneus Comes.]
people, the brunt of whose first inuasion earle Nonneus sustained,
one which was appointed to defend those parties, an approoued
capteine, & with continuall trauell in warres verie expert. But then
incountring with desperate and forlorne people, when he perceiued some
of his souldiers to be ouerthrowne and beaten downe, and himselfe
wounded, not able to abide the often assaults of his enimies, he
obteined this by informing the emperour what was necessarie and
[Sidenote: Seuerus coronell of the footmen.]
ought to be doone, insomuch that Seuerus, maister or (as I maie call
him) coronell of the footmen, was sent to helpe and reléeue things
that stood in danger: the which bringing a sufficient power with him
for the state of that businesse, when he came to those places, he
diuiding his armie into parts, put the Saxons in such feare and
trouble before they fought, that they did not so much as take weapon
in hand to make resistance, but being amazed with the sight of the
glittering ensignes, & the eagles figured in the Romane standards,
they streight made sute for peace, and at length after the matter
was debated in sundrie wise (because it was judged that it should be
profitable for the Romane commonwealth) truce was granted vnto them,
and manie yoong men (able for seruice in the warres) deliuered to the
Romans according to the couenants concluded.

After this the Saxons were permitted to depart without impeachment, &
so to returne from whence they came, who being now out of all feare,
and preparing to go their waies, diuers bands of footmen were sent
to lie priuilie in a certeine hid vallie so ambushed, as they might
easilie breake foorth vpon the enimies as they passed by them. But
it chanced far otherwise than they supposed, for certeine of those
footmen stirred with the noise of them as they were comming, brake
foorth out of time, and being suddenlie discouered whilest they hasted
to vnite and knit themselues togither, by the hideous crie and shout
of the Saxons they were put to flight. Yet by and by closing togither
againe, they staied, and the extremitie of the chance ministring to
them force (though not sufficient) they were driuen to fight it out,
and being beaten downe with great slaughter, had died euerie mothers
sonne, if a troope of horssemen armed at all points (being in like
maner placed in an other side at the entring of the waie to assaile
the enimies as they should passe) aduertised by the dolefull noise
of them that fought, had not spéedilie come to the succour of their

Then ran they togither more cruellie than before, and the Romans
bending themselues towards their enimies, compassed them in on each
side, and with drawne swords slue them downe right, so that there was
not one of them left to returne home to their natiue countrie to bring
newes how they had sped, nor one suffered to liue after anothers
death, either to reuenge their ruine, or to lament their losse.
Thus were the limits of the Romane empire preserued at that time in
Britaine, which should séeme to be about the yéere of our Lord 399.
[Sidenote: 399.]

¶ Thus were the Romans, as commonlie in all their martiall affaires,
so in this incounter verie fortunate, the happie issue of the conflict
falling out on their side. And strange it is to consider and marke,
how these people by a celestiall kind of influence were begotten and
borne as it were to prowesse and renowme; the course of their dealings
in the field most [Page 548] aptlie answering to their name. For (as
some suppose) the Romans were called of the Gréeke word [Greek: rhomae],
[Sidenote: _Solinus. Adr. Iun._]
signifieng power and mightinesse: and in old time they were called
Valentians, _A valendo_, of preuailing: so that it was no maruell though
they were victorious subduers of forren people, sithens they were by
nature created and appointed to be conquerors, and thereof had their

       *       *       *       *       *

_What the poet Claudianus saith of the state of Britaine in the decaie
of the Romane empire, of the Scots and Picts cruellie vexing the
Britains, they are afflicted by inuasion of barbarous nations, the
practise of the Saxons, of the Scots first comming into this Iland,
and from whence, the Scotish chonographers noted for curiositie and


[Sidenote: _Solinus. Adr. Iun._]
After this, in the time of the emperour Honorius, the Scots,
Picts, and Saxons, did eftsoones inuade the frontiers of the Romane
prouince in Britaine, as appéereth by that which the poet Claudianus
writeth, in attributing the honour of preseruing the same frontiers
[Sidenote: 396. _Claudianus_.]
vnto the said emperour, in his booke intituled "Panegerycus tertij
consulatus" (which fell in the yéere 396) as thus:

  Ille leues Mauros nec falso nomine Pictos
  Edomuit, Scotúmq; vago mucrone secutus,
  Fregit Hyperboreas remis audacibus vndas,
  Et geminis fulgens vtróq; sub axe tropheis,
  Tethyos alternae refluas calcauit arenas.

  The nimble Mores and Picts by right
  so cald, he hath subdude,
  And with his wandring swoord likewise
  the Scots he hath pursude:
  He brake with bold couragious oare
  the Hyperborean waue,
  And shining vnder both the poles
  with double trophies braue,
  He marcht vpon the bubling sands
  of either swelling seas.

The same Claudianus vpon the fourth consulship of Honorius, saith in a
tetrastichon as followeth:

  Quid rigor æternus cæli? quid frigora prosunt?
  Ignotúmq; fretum? maduerunt Saxone fuso
  Orcades, incaluit Pictonum sanguine Thule,
  Scotorum cumulos fleuit glacialis Hyberne.

  What lasting cold? what did to them
  the frostie climats gaine?
  And sea vnknowne? bemoisted all
  with bloud of Saxons slaine
  The Orknies were: with bloud of Picts
  [Sidenote: Thule some take to be Iseland, some Scotland.]
  hath Thule waxed warme,
  And ysie Ireland hath bewaild
  the heaps of Scotish harme.

The same praise giueth he to Stilico the sonne in law of Honorius, and
maketh mention of a legion of souldiers sent for out of Britaine in
the periphrasis or circumlocution of the Gotish bloudie warres:

  Venit & extremis legio prætenta Britannis,
  Quas Scoto dat fræna truci, ferróq; notatas
  Perleget exanimes Picto moriente figuras.

  A legion eke there came from out
  the farthest Britains bent,
  Which brideled hath the Scots so sterne:
  and marks with iron brent
  Vpon their liuelesse lims dooth read,
  whiles Picts their liues relent.

He rehearseth the like in his second "Panegerycus" of Stilico, in most
ample and pithie manner insuing:

  Inde Calidonio velata Britannia monstro,
  Ferro Picta genas, cuius vestigia verrit
  Cærulus, Oceaniq; æstum mentitur amictus,
  Me quoq; vicinis pereuntem gentibus inquit,
  Muniuit Stilico, totam quum Scotus Hybernam
  Mouit, & infesto spumauit remige Thetis,
  Illius effectum curis, ne bella timerem
  Scotica, ne Pictum tremerem, ne littore toto
  Prospicerem dubijs venturum Saxona ventis.

  Then Britaine whom the monsters did
  of Calidone surround,
  Whose cheekes were pearst with scorching steele,
  whose garments swept the ground,
  Resembling much the marble hew
  of ocean seas that boile,
  Said, She whom neighbour nations did
  conspire to bring to spoile,
  Hath Stilico munited strong, when
  raised by Scots entice
  All Ireland was, and enimies ores
  the salt sea fome did slice,
  His care hath causd, that I all feare
  of Scotish broiles haue bard,
  Ne doo I dread the Picts, ne looke
  my countrie coasts to gard
  Gainst Saxon troops, whom changing winds
  sent sailing hitherward.

[Sidenote: Britaine afflicted by inuasion of barbarous nations.]
Thus maie it appéere, that in the time when the Romane empire began to
decaie, in like manner as other parts of the same empire were inuaded
by barbarous nations, so was that part of Britaine which was subiect
to the Romane emperors grieuouslie assailed by the Scots and Picts,
and also by the Saxons, the which in those daies inhabiting all
alongst the sea coasts of low Germanie, euen from the Elbe vnto the
Rhine, did not onelie trouble the sea by continuall rouing, but also
vsed to come on land into diuerse parts of Britaine and Gallia,
inuading the countries, and robbing the same with great rage and

[Sidenote: _Sidon. Apol. li. 8. Epist._]
To the which Sidonius Apollinaris thus alludeth, writing to Namatius.
"The messenger did assuredlie affirme, that latelie ye blew the
trumpet to warre in your nation, and betwixt the office one while of
a mariner, and another while of a souldier, wafted about the
[Sidenote: The pirasie of the Saxons.]
crooked shores of the ocean sea against the fléet of the Saxons, of
whome as manie rouer as ye behold, so manie archpirats ye suppose to
sée: so doo they altogither with one accord command, obeie, teach,
and learne to plaie the parts of rouers, that euen now there is good
occasion to warne you to beware. This enimie is more cruell than all
other enimies. He assaileth at vnwares, he escapeth by forseeing the
danger afore hand, he despiseth those that stand against him, he
throweth downe the vnwarie: if he be followed he snappeth them vp that
pursue him, if he flée he escapeth."

Of like effect for proofe héereof be those verses which he wrote vnto
Maiorianus his panegyrike oration, following in Latine and in English

  Tot maria intraui duce te, longéq; remotas
  Sole sub occiduo gentes, victricia Cæsar
  Signa Calidonios transuexit ad vsq; Britannos,
  Fuderit & quanquam Scotum, & cum Saxone Pictum,
  Hostes quæsiuit quem iam natura vetabat,
  Quærere plus homines, &c.

  So manie seas I entred haue,
  and nations farre by west,
  By thy conduct, and Cæsar hath
  his banners borne full prest
  Vnto the furthest British coast,
  where Calidonians dwell,
  The Scot and Pict with Saxons eke,
  though he subdued fell,
  Yet would he enimies seeke vnknowne
  whom nature had forbid, &c.

¶ Thus much haue we thought good to gather out of the Romane and other
writers, that ye might perceiue the state of Britaine the better in
that time of the decaie of the Romane empire, and that ye might haue
occasion to marke by the waie, how not onelie the Scots, but also the
Saxons had attempted to inuade the Britains, before anie mention is
made of the same their attempts by the British and English writers.
But whether the Scots had anie habitation within the bounds of
Britaine, till the time supposed by the Britaine writers, we leaue
that point to the iudgement of others that be trauelled in the search
of such antiquities, onelie admonishing you, that in the Scotish
chronicle you shall find the opinion which their writers haue
conceiued of this matter, and also manie things touching the acts of
the Romans doone against diuerse of the Britains, which they presume
to be doone against their nation, though shadowed vnder the generall
name of Britains, or of other particular names, at this daie to most
men vnknowne. But whensoeuer the Scots came into this Ile, they
made the third nation that inhabited the same, comming first out of
[Sidenote: _Polydor_.]
Scithia, or rather out of Spaine (as some suppose) into Ireland,
and from thence into Britaine; next after the Picts, though their
writers fetch a farre more ancient beginning (as in their chronicles
at large appéereth) referring them to the reading thereof, that desire
to vnderstand that matter as they set it foorth.

_Thus farre the dominion and tribute of the Romans ouer this land
of Britaine, which had continued (by the collection of some
chronographers) the space of 483. yeeres. And héere we thinke it
conuenient to end this fourth booke._

*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Chronicles (1 of 6): The Historie of England (4 of 8) - The Fovrth Booke Of The Historie Of England" ***

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