Opelika High School
Celtic Britain AP & Honors English 12
Anglo-Saxon History Notes
8th Century B.C.—1st Century A.D.
Who were the Celts? o Multiple gods and goddesses
Nomadic people from European mainland o Druids
o Settled in southern Britain Artists
o Lived in villages, not cities or Warriors
Clans Lovers of Words & Sounds
Chiefs o Oral Language
Religious People Bards
o Matriarchal CuChulain
1st Century B.C.—5th Century A.D.
55 B.C. ________________________________________________________________________
o Had never faced Celts using these tactics
o Claimed Britain for Rome and then left
43 A.D. ________________________________________________________________________
o Annexed Britain as part of Rome
o Permanently assigned troops to ______________________________________________
Celts have three choices.
After death of her husband in 60 A.D., Romans had her publically flogged and her
four daughters raped in a show of force.
She led the Iceni to destroy the Roman city of Camolodunum and massacre all
Roman citizens there.
After destroying the 9th Legion, she led the Iceni to _________________________
—over 70,000 Roman citizens killed.
Two Roman legions, the 14th and the 20th, combined to defeat the Iceni. Boudicca
poisoned herself rather than surrender.
Nero sent 5,000 reinforcements from Germany. The Roman army massacred all
Druids in Britain.
o After a century or so of unrest, the two groups, the Celts and the Romans, begin to work
together as the Romans begin enforcing the ________________________ across Britain.
Benefits of the Pax Romana
o Common people could move around without fear of attack from outlaws.
o The Roman army began enlisting British young men as soldiers, teaching them Latin and
paying them with Roman coins.
o A British man who served in the Roman army for 20 years retired with a pension and full
o The Roman administrators organized Britain with prefects and governors, allowing Britain
to function as a united country rather than feuding tribes.
o Roman government provided a standard currency for Britain.
o Paved roads across Britain that are still used today.
o Stone walls around its cities in Britain. The Emperor Hadrian built a wall across northern
Britain to keep the Scots out— “Hadrian’s Wall” which still exists.
o Villas and baths as vacation sites which still exist. Many of these structures had running
water and central heating.
o Harbors and lighthouses on the coast of the English Channel.
o Provided Britain with a written language.
o Formed a “bridge” between Britain and the rest of Roman Europe.
o Spread by way of the army and the government giving Britain names that we still use. Any
town or city whose name ends with “chester” was a Roman camp at one time—Colchester,
Winchester, Dorchester, for example.
o Given official status by the Emperor Constantine in the year 300 A.D.
o Provided another “bridge” between Britain and Roman Europe.
o Reinforced the use of Latin throughout Britain.
o Reinforced the need for a written language in Britain.
o Absorbed Celtic feast days and traditions in order to be more accepted by the British.
Over 300 years of Roman rule, the British and the Romans intermarried, becoming “Romano-
British,” Roman citizens by heritage, but British by birth.
The entire Roman Empire came under heavy pressure from Germanic tribes in the early
Rome began to withdraw its military and government from its borders, including Britain.
While many Roman citizens and members of the military left Britain, many others considered
themselves “British” first and stayed.
Military and government functions did not disappear, but they lost central command and fell back to
regional or local control.