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The Towns of Roman Britain   By:

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[Frontispiece: Roman Britain shewing the chief Roman Roads.]


By the

Rev. J. O. Bevan, M.A., F.G.S., Assoc. Inst. C.E., F.S.A.; Fellow of the College of Preceptors and Examiner, Sometime Prizeman, Exhibitioner and Foundation Scholar of Emmanuel College, Cambridge.

Author of " The Genesis and Evolution of the Individual Soul " " Egypt and the Egyptians " " University Life in the Middle Ages " " Handbook of the History and Development of Philosophy " " Arch├Žological Map of Herefordshire " and numerous other Works.

London Chapman & Hall, Ltd. 1917 [All Rights Reserved]



The Author writes the last line of this book with a sigh at the incompleteness of his work. He is conscious he has touched but the fringe of the mantle covering the form of the silent Muse of History, but his efforts will be justified if he succeeds in persuading even a single student to persevere and lead the fair Clio to disclose the full story of which broken whispers are here recorded. No one can doubt the fascination of this page of our nation's development, dealing as it does with the dawn of that day of which, please God, the complete effulgence will shine more and more to the perfect end.

In this brochure attention has been chiefly directed to the towns of Roman Britain, as it would have required a volume of stupendous size to formulate a record of sites associated with isolated settlements, camps, burrows, "and bowers," or grounds whereon sports were conducted. Again, there are spots of interest more or less connected with Roman occupation, in tradition or in fact, such as Alderney,[1] Porchester,[2] Glastonbury, Avebury, Arbow Low in Derbyshire, Stripple Stones, on Bodmin Moor, in Cornwall, the hill fort in Parc y meirch Wood, Dinorben, Denbighshire. The line we have been compelled to draw necessarily excludes such as these. The present work is intended to furnish a compendious guide to readers who desire to study the fruits of the Roman occupation, to trace out the roads they laid down, and to possess themselves of the position and essential features of the centres where they congregated for commerce, pleasure, or defence. The Author has long been attracted to the elucidation of the early history of Britain, and this feeling was intensified by the work he undertook some years ago in connection with the compilation of an Arch├Žological Map of Herefordshire, on lines laid down by the Society of Antiquaries. His experience at that time made him aware how such an undertaking might serve to quicken the curiosity, and to whet the expectation of the student of old time as to the wonderful secrets which await the skilful use of such humble implements as the shovel and the pick in almost any quarter of our island home.

[Footnote 1: Alderney (Ald, old ; Ey, island ). This, the most northerly of the four Channel Islands seems to have been known to the Romans as Riduna . Remains of ancient dwellings have been found there.]

[Footnote 2: To the north of Portsmouth Harbour is situated Porchester Castle, a ruined Norman fortress, occupying the site of the Portus Magnus of the Romans.]

The Author desires to convey his acknowledgments to Messrs. Philip and Son, Ltd., of Fleet Street, for their kindness in permitting him to make use of the blocks for the two Maps which appear in this volume.



PAGE Preface . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . v

Table of Contents . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . vii


Historical Sketch . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1

Early History . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5

Main Divisions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6

Roman Britain . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7

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