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The Romans in Britain
The Roman occupation of Britain began in 43 AD and lasted for almost 400 years. This period was marked by several key events, both military and civilian. Here is a timeline of the most important happenings during the Roman occupation of Britain.
55-53 BC, The Roman occupation of Britain began with the first and second invasion of Julius Caesar
43 AD, Claudius orders the conquest of Britain; the first Roman governor was Aulus Plautius
50 AD, London (Londinium) is founded
55 AD, the Roman general Quintus Petillius Cerialis led an expedition into what is now Wales and defeated the Celtic tribes there
61 AD, the Romans conquered southern England after the revolt of Boudicca and established the province of Britannia
63 AD Joseph of Arimathea is sent to Britain to convert the people to Christianity.
77 AD, The Romans defeated the last of the resistant tribes in the North making all of Britain Roman.
79 AD, Roman general, Julius Agricola led a series of campaigns against the Caledonians (the Scottish tribes)
122 AD, the construction of Hadrian's Wall begins
209 AD, St Alban becomes the 1st English Christian martyr
306 AD, Constantine the Great declared Roman Emperor at York
312 AD, Emperor Constantine converts to Christianity and made Christianity legal throughout the Roman Empire.
410 AD, The Romans withdrew from Britain, after which it was invaded by several different peoples, including the Anglo-Saxons, the Vikings, and the Normans
Map of Roman Britain c150 AD
Facts about Romans in Britain
- Romans viewed the British tribes people as little more than drunken Barbarians. They were always getting into fights, and traditionally sported spikey hair and blue war paint.
- Children in Roman Britain played games such as Dice, Hopscotch, and Hide and Seek, which have survived to the present day.
- Medical knowledge was very limited in Roman times, but herbal medicines were very popular. Fennel was said to calm the nerves, while Sage was put in cough mixtures, and Lemon Balm helped headaches.
- Romans enjoyed all sorts of random delicacies at their meals, one popular dish was Marinated Larks Tongues. The recipe required 1,000 of the birds.
- One of the new religions Romans brought to Britain, was worshipping Mithras the Persian God Of Light. Male soldiers and sea merchants went underground and took part in gruesome rituals, such as being locked in a tomb for several hours.
- Up until the Roman invasions of Britain, childrens learning solely consisted of stories, poems, songs and customs, being passed down through the generations. When the Romans arrived, if money was available, children were sent to a school called a Ludus. The boys and the few girls who attended school, learnt to write, count using an Abacus, and studied work from Greek and Roman Authors.
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