In historiography, ancient Rome is Roman civilization from the founding of the Italian city of Rome in the 8th century BC to the collapse of the Western Roman Empire in the 5th century AD, encompassing the Roman Kingdom, Roman Republic and Roman Empire until the fall of the western empire. The civilization began as an Italic settlement in the Italian Peninsula, conventionally founded in 753 BC, that grew into the city of Rome and which subsequently gave its name to the empire over which it ruled and to the widespread civilisation the empire developed; the Roman Empire expanded to become one of the largest empires in the ancient world, though still ruled from the city, with an estimated 50 to 90 million inhabitants and covering 5.0 million square kilometres at its height in AD 117. In its many centuries of existence, the Roman state evolved from a monarchy to a classical republic and to an autocratic semi-elective empire. Through conquest and assimilation, it dominated the North African coast and most of Western Europe, the Balkans and much of the Middle East.
It is grouped into classical antiquity together with ancient Greece, their similar cultures and societies are known as the Greco-Roman world. Ancient Roman civilisation has contributed to modern language, society, law, government, art, literature and engineering. Rome professionalised and expanded its military and created a system of government called res publica, the inspiration for modern republics such as the United States and France, it achieved impressive technological and architectural feats, such as the construction of an extensive system of aqueducts and roads, as well as the construction of large monuments and public facilities. The Punic Wars with Carthage were decisive in establishing Rome as a world power. In this series of wars Rome gained control of the strategic islands of Corsica and Sicily. By the end of the Republic, Rome had conquered the lands around the Mediterranean and beyond: its domain extended from the Atlantic to Arabia and from the mouth of the Rhine to North Africa.
The Roman Empire emerged with the dictatorship of Augustus Caesar. 721 years of Roman–Persian Wars started in 92 BC with their first war against Parthia. It would become the longest conflict in human history, have major lasting effects and consequences for both empires. Under Trajan, the Empire reached its territorial peak, it stretched from the entire Mediterranean Basin to the beaches of the North Sea in the north, to the shores of the Red and Caspian Seas in the East. Republican mores and traditions started to decline during the imperial period, with civil wars becoming a prelude common to the rise of a new emperor. Splinter states, such as the Palmyrene Empire, would temporarily divide the Empire during the crisis of the 3rd century. Plagued by internal instability and attacked by various migrating peoples, the western part of the empire broke up into independent "barbarian" kingdoms in the 5th century; this splintering is a landmark historians use to divide the ancient period of universal history from the pre-medieval "Dark Ages" of Europe.
The eastern part of the empire endured through the 5th century and remained a power throughout the "Dark Ages" and medieval times until its fall in 1453 AD. Although the citizens of the empire made no distinction, the empire is most referred to as the "Byzantine Empire" by modern historians during the Middle Ages to differentiate between the state of antiquity and the nation it grew into. According to the founding myth of Rome, the city was founded on 21 April 753 BC on the banks of the river Tiber in central Italy, by the twin brothers Romulus and Remus, who descended from the Trojan prince Aeneas, who were grandsons of the Latin King Numitor of Alba Longa. King Numitor was deposed by his brother, while Numitor's daughter, Rhea Silvia, gave birth to the twins. Since Rhea Silvia had been raped and impregnated by Mars, the Roman god of war, the twins were considered half-divine; the new king, feared Romulus and Remus would take back the throne, so he ordered them to be drowned. A she-wolf saved and raised them, when they were old enough, they returned the throne of Alba Longa to Numitor.
The twins founded their own city, but Romulus killed Remus in a quarrel over the location of the Roman Kingdom, though some sources state the quarrel was about, going to rule or give his name to the city. Romulus became the source of the city's name. In order to attract people to the city, Rome became a sanctuary for the indigent and unwanted; this caused a problem, in that Rome was bereft of women. Romulus visited neighboring towns and tribes and attempted to secure marriage rights, but as Rome was so full of undesirables he was refused. Legend says that the Latins invited the Sabines to a festival and stole their unmarried maidens, leading to the integration of the Latins with the Sabines. Another legend, recorded by Greek historian Dionysius of Halicarnassus, says that Prince Aeneas led a group of Trojans on a sea voyage to found a new Troy, since the original was destroyed at the end of the Trojan War. After a long time in rough seas, they landed on the banks of the Tiber River. Not long after they landed, the men wanted to take to the sea again, but the women who were traveling with them did not want to leave.
One woman, named Roma, suggested that the women burn the ships out at sea to prevent their leaving
Hadrian's Wall called the Roman Wall, Picts' Wall, or Vallum Hadriani in Latin, was a defensive fortification in the Roman province of Britannia, begun in AD 122 in the reign of the emperor Hadrian. It ran from the banks of the River Tyne near the North Sea to the Solway Firth on the Irish Sea, was the northern limit of the Roman Empire north of which were the lands of the northern Ancient Britons, including the Picts, it had a stone wall. There were milecastles with two turrets in between. There was a fort about every five Roman miles. From north to south, the wall comprised a ditch, military way and vallum, another ditch with adjoining mounds, it is thought the milecastles were staffed with static garrisons, whereas the forts had fighting garrisons of infantry and cavalry. In addition to the wall's defensive military role, its gates may have been customs posts. A significant portion of the wall still stands and can be followed on foot along the adjoining Hadrian's Wall Path; the largest Roman archaeological feature anywhere, it runs a total of 73 miles in northern England.
Regarded as a British cultural icon, Hadrian's Wall is one of Britain's major ancient tourist attractions. It was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987. In comparison, the Antonine wall, thought by some to be based on Hadrian's wall, was not declared a World Heritage site until 2008, it is a common misconception that Hadrian's Wall marks the boundary between Scotland. In fact Hadrian's Wall lies within England and has never formed the Anglo-Scottish border. While it is less than 0.6 mi south of the border with Scotland in the west at Bowness-on-Solway, in the east at Wallsend it is as much as 68 miles away. Hadrian's Wall was 117.5 km long. East of the River Irthing, the wall was made from squared stone and measured 3 metres wide and 5 to 6 metres high, while west of the river the wall was made from turf and measured 6 metres wide and 3.5 metres high. These dimensions do not include the wall's ditches and forts; the central section measured eight Roman feet wide on a 3 m base. Some parts of this section of the wall survive to a height of 3 m.
South of the wall, a large ditch was dug, with adjoining parallel mounds, one on either side. This is known today as the Vallum though the word vallum in Latin is the origin of the English word wall, does not refer to a ditch. In many places – for example Limestone Corner – the Vallum is better preserved than the wall, robbed of much of its stone. Hadrian's Wall extended west from Segedunum at Wallsend on the River Tyne, via Carlisle and Kirkandrews-on-Eden, to the shore of the Solway Firth, ending a short but unknown distance west of the village of Bowness-on-Solway; the A69 and B6318 roads follow the course of the wall from Newcastle upon Tyne to Carlisle along the northern coast of Cumbria. Although the curtain wall ends near Bowness-on-Solway, this does not mark the end of the line of defensive structures; the system of milecastles and turrets is known to have continued along the Cumbria coast as far as Risehow, south of Maryport. For classification purposes, the milecastles west of Bowness-on-Solway are referred to as Milefortlets.
Hadrian's Wall was planned before Hadrian's visit to Britain in 122. According to restored sandstone fragments found in Jarrow which date from 118 or 119, it was Hadrian's wish to keep "intact the empire", imposed on him via "divine instruction". Although Hadrian's biographer wrote " was the first to build a wall 80 miles long to separate the Romans from the barbarians", reasons for the construction of the wall vary, no recording of an exact explanation survives. Theories have been presented by historians of an expression of Roman power and Hadrian's policy of defence before expansion. On his accession to the throne in 117, there was unrest and rebellion in Roman Britain and from the peoples of various conquered lands across the Empire, including Egypt, Judea and Mauritania; these troubles may have influenced Hadrian's plan to construct the wall as well as his construction of limites in other areas of the Empire, but to what extent is unknown. Scholars disagree over how much of a threat the inhabitants of northern Britain presented and whether there was any economic advantage in defending and garrisoning a fixed line of defences like the Wall, rather than conquering and annexing what has become the Scottish Lowlands and defending the territory with a loose arrangement of forts.
The limites of Rome were never expected to stop tribes from migrating or armies from invading, while a frontier protected by a palisade or stone wall would help curb cattle-raiders and the incursions of other small groups, the economic viability of constructing and keeping guarded a wall 72 miles long along a sparsely populated border to stop small-scale raiding is dubious. Another possible explanation for the wall is the degree of control it would have provided over immigration and customs. Limites did not mark the boundaries of the empire: Roman power and influence extended beyond the walls. People within and beyond the limites travelled through it each day when conducting business, organised check-points like those offered by Hadrian's Wall provided good opportunities for taxation. With watch towers only a short distance from gateways in the limites, patrolling legionaries could have kept track of
Manaw Gododdin was the narrow coastal region on the south side of the Firth of Forth, part of the Brythonic-speaking Kingdom of Gododdin in the post-Roman Era. It is notable as the homeland of Cunedda prior to his conquest of North Wales, as the homeland of the heroic warriors in the literary epic Y Gododdin. Pressed by the Picts expanding southward and the Northumbrians expanding northward, it was permanently destroyed in the 7th century and its territory absorbed into the then-ascendant Kingdom of Northumbria; the lands both south and north of the Firth of Forth were known as'Manaw', but from the post-Roman Era forward, only the southern side is referred to as Manaw Gododdin, the Manaw associated with the people of Gododdin. Manaw Gododdin was adjacent to – and included in – Eidyn, the region surrounding modern Edinburgh. Though Manaw Gododdin was located within the territory of modern Scotland, as a part of Yr Hen Ogledd it is an intrinsic part of Welsh history, as both the Welsh and the Men of the North were self-perceived as a single people, collectively referred to as Cymry.
The arrival in Wales of Cunedda of Manaw Gododdin in c. 450 is traditionally considered to be the beginning of the history of modern Wales. The name appears in literature as both Manaw Manau Gododdin; the modern Welsh form is spelled with a'w'. Background: confusion with the Isle of Man The Isle of Man is known in Welsh as Ynys Manaw, this has introduced ambiguity in literary and historical references where Manaw was used without further elaboration, as to whether the reference was to Manaw Gododdin or to the Isle of Man. A similar problem exists in Irish, where both the northern Pictish Manaw and the southern Manaw Gododdin are referred to as Manann. Certain forms of the Irish name for the Isle of Man produce the genitive name Manann. Either place can be inferred. Historia Brittonum In the Historia Brittonum, Nennius says that "the great king Mailcun reigned among the Britons, i.e. in Gwynedd". He adds that Maelgwn's ancestor Cunedda arrived in Gwynedd 146 years before Maelgwn's reign, coming from Manaw Gododdin, expelled the Scots with great slaughter.
In the chapters of the Historia Brittonum discussing the circumstances leading up to the death of Penda of Mercia in 655, Oswiu of Northumbria is besieged at "Iudeu" by Penda and his allies and offers up the wealth of that place, captured by the Northumbrians, as well as that which he held "as far as Manaw". In Latin the phrase is usque in manau pendae; the recensions are not all consistent on this point. There is esque in manu pendae and esque in manum pendae, which if reliable, would allow for a different interpretation, as manus is Latin for hand. Welsh genealogies The royal genealogies provide no information per se about Manaw Gododdin. However, as it was the homeland of Cunedda and he was the progenitor of many Welsh royal lines, he is prominent in the Harleian genealogies; some of these genealogies reappear in Jesus College MS. 20, though it focuses on the ancient royalty of South Wales. All of Cunedda's descendants claim a heritage from Manaw Gododdin. Annals of Ulster According to the Annals of Ulster, Áedán mac Gabráin, king of Dál Riata, was victor in a "bellum Manonn" in 582.
There is some scholarly disagreement as to the place meant, whether Manaw Gododdin or the Isle of Man. Both are plausible and have some supporting evidence, but lacking hard information, the issue will not be settled definitively. Both those favouring the Isle and those favouring Manaw Gododdin say so and include a footnote to the effect that the balance seems to be on one side or the other, with accompanying arguments. Annals of Ulster, Anglo-Saxon Chronicle The Annals of Ulster say that in 711, the Northumbrians defeated the Picts at the campus Manann, the field of Manaw; the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle gives the year as 710, saying that "Beorhtfrith the ealdorman fought against the Picts between Haefe and Caere". This is assumed to be between the Rivers Carron. William Forbes Skene first argues for it in The Four Ancient Books of Wales, noting that the Avon rises in the place still known as Slamannan Moor, he repeats the conjecture in his Celtic Scotland, historians have accepted his suggestion, citing him as the source.
Manapii Gododdini, Manapii "The tribe of Of Odin, from Belgium of Assir-Vanir Of the "Land of the Godi Odin,Adam,Atum" Asia and the Kingdom of Van, called Vadalusia centered on the Holy Mt of Urartu The Gaelic form of the name is Manann. Like Manaw, its etymology is uncertain, with neither form owing a heritage to the other. In the Early Middle Ages, Brythonic was replaced by Gaelic in the region of Manaw, it was common to retain original place-names, but to alter the pronunciation to be in accord with the language, current. Manaw Gododdin South of the Firth of Forth and River Forth the name survives in the name of Slamannan Moor and the village of Slamannan, in Falkirk; this is derived from Sliabh Manann,'Mount Manann'. It appears in the name of Dalmeny, some 5 miles northwest of Edinburgh, it was known as Dumanyn, assumed to be derived from Dun Manann. Pictish Manaw North of the Forth it survives in the name of the burgh of Clackmannan and the eponymous county of Clackmannanshire; this is derived from Clach Manann, the'stone of Manann', referring to a monument stone located there.
With little known about Manaw Gododdin, there is little that ca
The Votadini known as the Wotādīni, Votādīni or Otadini, were a Celtic people of the Iron Age in Great Britain. Their territory was in what is now south-east Scotland and north-east England, extending from the Firth of Forth and around modern Stirling to the River Tyne, including at its peak what are now the Falkirk and Borders regions and Northumberland; this area was part of the Roman province of Britannia. The earliest known capital of the Votadini appears to have been the Traprain Law hill fort in East Lothian, until, abandoned in the early 5th century, they afterwards moved to Din Eidyn. The name is recorded as Votadini in classical sources, their descendants were the early medieval kingdom known in Old Welsh as Guotodin, in Welsh as Gododdin. One of the oldest known pieces of British literature is a poem called Y Gododdin, written in Old Welsh, having been passed down via the oral traditions of the Brythonic speaking Britons; this poem celebrates the bravery of the soldiers from what was referred to by the Britons as Yr Hen Ogledd – The Old North.
The area was settled as early as 3000 BC, offerings of that period imported from Cumbria and Wales left on the sacred hilltop at Cairnpapple Hill, West Lothian, show that by there was a link with these areas. By around 1500 BC Traprain Law in East Lothian was a place of burial, with evidence of occupation and signs of ramparts after 1000 BC. Excavation at Edinburgh Castle found late Bronze Age material from about 850 BC. Brythonic Celtic culture and language spread into the area at some time after the 8th century BC through cultural contact rather than mass invasion, systems of kingdoms developed. Numerous hillforts and settlements support the image of quarrelsome tribes and petty kingdoms recorded by the Romans, though evidence that at times occupants neglected the defences might suggest that symbolic power was sometimes as significant as warfare. In the 1st century the Romans recorded the Votadini as a British tribe. Between 138–162 they came under direct Roman military rule as occupants of the region between Hadrian's and the Antonine Walls.
When the Romans drew back to Hadrian's Wall the Votadini became a friendly buffer state, getting the rewards of alliance with Rome without being under its rule, until about 400 when the Romans withdrew from southern Great Britain. Quantities of Roman goods found at Traprain Law, East Lothian might suggest that this proved profitable, though this is open to speculation. Since the 3rd century, Britannia had been divided into four provinces. In a late reorganisation a province called Valentia was created, which may have been a new province including the Votadini territory, but is more to have been one of the four existing provinces renamed. Excavations in Votadini territory around Traprain Law, have unearthed silver Roman items, including several Gallic Roman coins, indicating some level of trade with the continent, it is unknown, whether the other items were traded for, or given to them by the Romans as an appeasement. After the Roman withdrawal in the early 5th century, the lands of the Votadini became part of the area known as the Hen Ogledd.
By about 470, a new kingdom of Gododdin had emerged covering most of the original Votadini territory, while the southern part between the Tweed and the Tyne formed its own separate kingdom called Brynaich. Cunedda, legendary founder of the Kingdom of Gwynedd in north Wales, is said to have been a Gododdin chieftain who migrated south-west about this time. Both kingdoms warred with the Angles of Bernicia; however Gwynedd where Cunedda established a militaristic dynasty remained undefeated until the 13th century The name has been taken by the Votadini Motorcycle Club, based in the North East of England. The tribe features in author Anthony Riches' Empire series as part of the failed uprising by Calgus, a fictional Selgovae king, who betrays them and leaves them at the mercy of the Romans. After a brief battle between the Romans and a depleted Votadini host, the leader of the Votadini, allies himself with the Romans for vengeance against the Selgovae. Martos militarily attaches himself and a substantial number of his men to the lead character, Marcus Valerius Aquila, thus sees action in Germania & Dacia when the lead's exploits take him there.
Dere Street History of Northumberland History of Scotland Yeavering Bell Ancient Lothian – Histories – the romano-british era The History Files: Post-Roman Celtic Kingdoms: Goutodin BBC – History – The Gododdin 590 BBC – History – Tribes of Britain A Very Rough Guide To the Main DNA Sources of the Counties of the British Isles John Eckersley, Katherine Hope Borges, 12 June 2006. Retrieved 5 September 2006
King Arthur was a legendary British leader who, according to medieval histories and romances, led the defence of Britain against Saxon invaders in the late 5th and early 6th centuries. The details of Arthur's story are composed of folklore and literary invention, his historical existence is debated and disputed by modern historians; the sparse historical background of Arthur is gleaned from various sources, including the Annales Cambriae, the Historia Brittonum, the writings of Gildas. Arthur's name occurs in early poetic sources such as Y Gododdin. Arthur is a central figure in the legends making up the Matter of Britain; the legendary Arthur developed as a figure of international interest through the popularity of Geoffrey of Monmouth's fanciful and imaginative 12th-century Historia Regum Britanniae. In some Welsh and Breton tales and poems that date from before this work, Arthur appears either as a great warrior defending Britain from human and supernatural enemies or as a magical figure of folklore, sometimes associated with the Welsh otherworld Annwn.
How much of Geoffrey's Historia was adapted from such earlier sources, rather than invented by Geoffrey himself, is unknown. Although the themes and characters of the Arthurian legend varied from text to text, there is no one canonical version, Geoffrey's version of events served as the starting point for stories. Geoffrey depicted Arthur as a king of Britain who established a vast empire. Many elements and incidents that are now an integral part of the Arthurian story appear in Geoffrey's Historia, including Arthur's father Uther Pendragon, the magician Merlin, Arthur's wife Guinevere, the sword Excalibur, Arthur's conception at Tintagel, his final battle against Mordred at Camlann, final rest in Avalon; the 12th-century French writer Chrétien de Troyes, who added Lancelot and the Holy Grail to the story, began the genre of Arthurian romance that became a significant strand of medieval literature. In these French stories, the narrative focus shifts from King Arthur himself to other characters, such as various Knights of the Round Table.
Arthurian literature thrived during the Middle Ages but waned in the centuries that followed until it experienced a major resurgence in the 19th century. In the 21st century, the legend lives on, not only in literature but in adaptations for theatre, television and other media; the historical basis for King Arthur has long been debated by scholars. One school of thought, citing entries in the Historia Brittonum and Annales Cambriae, sees Arthur as a genuine historical figure, a Romano-British leader who fought against the invading Anglo-Saxons some time in the late 5th to early 6th century; the Historia Brittonum, a 9th-century Latin historical compilation attributed in some late manuscripts to a Welsh cleric called Nennius, contains the first datable mention of King Arthur, listing twelve battles that Arthur fought. These culminate in the Battle of Badon. Recent studies, question the reliability of the Historia Brittonum; the other text that seems to support the case for Arthur's historical existence is the 10th-century Annales Cambriae, which link Arthur with the Battle of Badon.
The Annales date this battle to 516–518, mention the Battle of Camlann, in which Arthur and Medraut were both killed, dated to 537–539. These details have been used to bolster confidence in the Historia's account and to confirm that Arthur did fight at Badon. Problems have been identified, with using this source to support the Historia Brittonum's account; the latest research shows that the Annales Cambriae was based on a chronicle begun in the late 8th century in Wales. Additionally, the complex textual history of the Annales Cambriae precludes any certainty that the Arthurian annals were added to it that early, they were more added at some point in the 10th century and may never have existed in any earlier set of annals. The Badon entry derived from the Historia Brittonum; this lack of convincing early evidence is the reason many recent historians exclude Arthur from their accounts of sub-Roman Britain. In the view of historian Thomas Charles-Edwards, "at this stage of the enquiry, one can only say that there may well have been an historical Arthur the historian can as yet say nothing of value about him".
These modern admissions of ignorance are a recent trend. The historian John Morris made the putative reign of Arthur the organising principle of his history of sub-Roman Britain and Ireland, The Age of Arthur. So, he found little to say about a historical Arthur. In reaction to such theories, another school of thought emerged which argued that Arthur had no historical existence at all. Morris's Age of Arthur prompted the archaeologist Nowell Myres to observe that "no figure on the borderline of history and mythology has wasted more of the historian's time". Gildas' 6th-century polemic De Excidio et Conquestu Britanniae, written within living memory of Badon, mentions the battle but does not mention Arthur. Arthur is not mentioned in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle or named in any surviving manuscript written between 400 and 820, he is absent from Bede's early-8th-century Ecclesiastical History of the English People, another major early source for post-Roman history that mentions Badon. The historian David Dumville wrote: "I think.
He owes his place in our history books to a'no smoke without fire' school of thought... The f
Kingdom of Gwynedd
The Principality or Kingdom of Gwynedd was a Roman Empire successor state that emerged in sub-Roman Britain in the 5th century during the Anglo-Saxon settlement of Britain. Based in northwest Wales, the rulers of Gwynedd rose to dominance and were acclaimed as "King of the Britons" before losing their power in civil wars or invasions; the kingdom of Gruffydd ap Llywelyn—the King of Wales from 1055 to 1063—was shattered by a Saxon invasion in 1063 just prior to the Norman invasion of Wales, but the House of Aberffraw restored by Gruffudd ap Cynan recovered and Llywelyn the Great of Gwynedd was able to proclaim the Principality of Wales at the Aberdyfi gathering of Welsh princes in 1216. In 1277, the Treaty of Aberconwy granted peace between the two but would guarantee that Welsh self-rule would end upon Llewelyn's death, so it represented the completion of the first stage of the conquest of Wales by Edward I. Welsh tradition credited the founding of Gwynedd to the Brittonic polity of Gododdin from Lothian invading the lands of the Brittonic polities of the Deceangli and Gangani in the 5th century.
The sons of their leader, were said to have possessed the land between the rivers Dee and Teifi. The true borders of the realm varied over time, but Gwynedd Proper was thought to comprise the cantrefs of Aberffraw and Cantref Rhosyr on Anglesey and Arllechwedd, Dunoding, Dyffryn Clwyd, Llŷn, Rhos and Tegeingl at the mountainous mainland region of Snowdonia opposite; the name Gwynedd is believed to be an early borrowing from Irish, either cognate with the Old Irish ethnic name Féni, "Irish People", from Primitive Irish *weidh-n- "Forest People"/"Wild People", or Old Irish fían "war band", from Proto-Irish *wēnā. The 5th-century Cantiorix Inscription now in Penmachno church seems to be the earliest record of the name, it is in memory of a man named Cantiorix, the Latin inscription is Cantiorix hic iacit/Venedotis cives fuit/consobrinos Magli magistrati: "Cantiorix lies here. He was a citizen of Gwynedd and a cousin of Maglos the magistrate"; the use of terms such as "citizen" and "magistrate" may be cited as evidence that Romano-British culture and institutions continued in Gwynedd long after the legions had withdrawn.
Ptolemy marks the Llŷn Peninsula as the "Promontory of the Gangani", a name he recorded in Ireland. In the late and post-Roman eras, Irish from Leinster may have arrived in Anglesey and elsewhere in northwest Wales, with the name Llŷn derived from Laigin, an Old Irish form that means "of Leinster"; the region became known as Venedotia in Latin. The name was attributed to a specific Irish colony on Anglesey, but broadened to refer to Irish settlers as a whole in North Wales by the 5th century. According to 9th century monk and chronicler Nennius, North Wales was left defenseless by the Roman withdrawal and subject to increasing raids by marauders from the Isle of Man and Ireland, a situation which led Cunedda, his sons and their entourage, to migrate in the mid-5th century from Manaw Gododdin to settle and defend North Wales against the raiders and bring the region within Romano-British control. According to traditional pedigrees, Cunedda's grandfather was Padarn Beisrudd, Paternus of the red cloak, "an epithet which suggests that he wore the cloak of a Roman officer", according to Davies.
Nennius recounts how Cunedda brought order to North Wales and after his death Gwynedd was divided among his sons: Dynod was awarded Dunoding, another son Ceredig received Ceredigion, so forth. However, this overly neat origin myth has been met with skepticism: Early Welsh literature contains a wealth of stories seeking to explain place-names, doubtless the story is propaganda aimed at justifying the right of Cunedda and his descendants to territories beyond the borders of the original Kingdom of Gwynedd; that kingdom consisted of the two banks of the Menai Straits and the coast over towards the estuary of the river Conwy, the foundations upon which Cunedda's descendants created a more extensive realm. Undoubtedly, a Brittonic leader of substance established himself in North Wales, he and his descendants defeated any remaining Irish presence, incorporated the settlements into their domain and reoriented the whole of Gwynedd into a Romano-British and "Welsh" outlook; the Welsh of Gwynedd remained conscious of their Romano-British heritage, an affinity with Rome survived long after the Empire retreated from Britain with the use of Latin in writing and sustaining the Christian religion.
The Welsh ruling classes continued to emphasize Roman ancestors within their pedigrees as a way to link their rule with the old imperial Roman order, suggesting stability and continuity with that old order. According to Professor John Davies, "here is a determinedly Brythonic, indeed Roman, air to early Gwynedd." So palpable was the Roman heritage felt that Professor Bryan Ward-Perkins of Trinity College, wrote "It took until 1282, when Edward I conquered Gwynedd, for the last part of Roman Britain to fall a strong case can be made for Gwynedd as the last part of the entire Roman Empire and west, to fall to the barbarians." There was quick abandonment of Roman political and ecclesiastical practices and institutions within Gwynedd and elsewhere in Wales. Roman knowledge was lost as the Romano-Britons shifted towards a streamlined militaristic near-tribal society that no longer
The limitanei or ripenses, meaning "the soldiers in frontier districts" or "the soldiers on the riverbank", were an important part of the late Roman and early Byzantine army after the reorganizations of the late 3rd and early 4th centuries. The limitanei, unlike the comitatenses and scolae, garrisoned fortifications along the borders of the Roman Empire and were not expected to fight far from their fortifications; the limitanei were lower-status and lower-paid than the comitatenses and palatini, the status distinction between scolae, palatini and limitanei had replaced the older distinction between praetorians and auxiliaries. The limitanei and palatini both included legionary units alongside auxiliary units; the nature of the limitanei changed between their introduction in the 3rd or 4th century and their disappearance in the 6th or 7th century. In the 4th century, the limitanei were professional soldiers, included both infantry and cavalry as well as river flotillas, but after the 5th century they were part-time soldiers, after the 6th century they were unpaid militia.
The role of the limitanei remains somewhat uncertain. Hugh Elton and Warren Treadgold suggest that, besides garrisoning fortifications along the frontier, they operated as border guards and customs police and to prevent small-scale raids, they may have driven off medium-scale attacks without the support of the field armies. Edward Luttwak saw their role as a key part in a strategy of defence-in-depth in combination with the provincial field armies. In the early 3rd century, the Roman military was organized into several provincial armies under the command of the provincial governors, a smaller reserve under the command of the emperor, guard units such as the Praetorian Guard, the urban cohorts. Field armies were temporary formations composed of the reserve and/or of detachments drawn from the provincial armies. In the 3rd century, due to the frequent wars, field armies could remain together for several years, under the direct command of the emperor, would require their own recruitment systems.
By the mid 4th century, the Roman military was divided into frontier armies under the command of the provincial duces and permanent field armies under the command of the emperor, the magistri peditum, magistri equitum, or comites. The frontier armies would oppose small-scale raids, they may have driven off medium-scale attacks without the support of the field armies. The frontier armies would be known as limitanei or ripenses; the field armies would respond to larger-scale attacks, would fight against rival emperors, would conduct any large-scale attacks into neighboring countries. The field armies would be known as comitatenses or palatini; the first known written reference to ripenses was in 325 and the first to limitanei was not until 363. Historians disagree on whether the emperor Diocletian, or one of his successors, such as Constantine I, split the Roman military into frontier armies and field armies. Theodor Mommsen, H. M. D. Parker, more Warren Treadgold and David S. Potter attribute the reorganization to Diocletian.
E. C. Nischer, D. van Berchem, more M. C. Bishop and J. C. N. Coulston attribute an expansion to Diocletian, the reorganization to Constantine I and his successors. Karl Strobel sees the reorganization as the culmination of trends going back well into the 3rd century, with Diocletian strengthening both the frontier and field armies; the division of the Roman Empire, the collapse of its western portion, the formation of the successor states means that the limitanei may have developed differently in the east and the west, or in different regions of the west. In the east, the emperor Justinian cancelled their pay. After this, the eastern limitanei were no longer professional soldiers, but continued to exist as militia through the Persian Wars and the Arab Conquest; the Arabic ajnad of Palestine, Jordan and Homs, may represent continuations of the commands of Palaestina, Arabia and Syria. In the west, the collapse of the empire cut off regular pay. Peter Heather notes an incident in the Life of St. Severinus, in Noricum in the 460s, where raiders had intercepted and cut down limitanei who were bringing their pay to the rest of their unit.
The limitanei represented the largest part of the late Roman Army. The eastern portion of the Notitia Dignitatum, from about 395, may count some 195,500 personnel in the frontier armies not counting the river flotillas, 104,000 in the field armies not counting the fleets, 3,500 in the palace guard; the western portion, from about 420, is harder to work with, because it has been unevenly edited, it omits some frontier provinces, it includes British provinces which were lost to the Empire. The size of the army, therefore of the limitanei, remains controversial. A. H. M. Jones and Warren Treadgold argue that the late Roman army was larger than earlier Roman armies, Treadgold estimates they had up to 645,000 troops. Karl Strobel denies this, Strobel estimates that the late Roman army had some 435,000 troops in the time of Diocletian and 450,000 in the time of Constantine I; the limitanei were under the command of the duces of their respective provinces. There were some exceptions, with comites commanding units of limitanei, with duces commanding units from two or more provinces.
The units of the limitanei included legiones of infantry divided between two bases and sometimes divided among more, numeri and cohortes of infantry, as well as vexillationes, equites and alae of cavalry. The size of