Tuesday, 9 February 2010

So who exactly are we? part 2

Oh Im going to love confusing you all now.

Just to recap - we've briefly covered the Celts and the Picts.

The Picts lived in Pictland, and the Celts lived...well, everywhere else in the British Isles!

Until, of course, yet another race of people decided to visit mainland Britain...... THE SCOTS!

Who came from (drum roll) .............Northern Ireland.

There are a few different theories about the origins of the Scots (or Scoti/Scotti), but one thing everyone agrees on, is that from the Emerald Isle they came, and that they were a Celtic tribe.
It's thought that the name may mean something along the lines of 'raiders' or 'pirates'. In any event, people who would have been recognised as Scots may have been living in Argyll as early as c.300.

Other Celtic tribes or factions also moved across the sea from Ireland and settled in Wales.

Ok - so who came next in our chequered past?

Shall we try the Romans?

The Romans ruled Gaul (Gallia as they called it) although today we know it as France. In 55 B.C. the Roman General Julius Caesar led his army across the sea from Gaul to Britain. He wanted to make Britain part of Rome's empire.

The British Celts fought bravely, and Caesar soon gave up and went back to Gaul.

Next year, in 54 B.C. the Romans came back. This time Caesar brought 30,000 soldiers. He had a few fights, managed to capture a Celtic hill-fort, then he left again. He didn't think Britain was worth a long war, and he wanted to get back to Rome.

Nearly a hundred years later, 43 A.D., the Romans returned. Emperor Claudius sent an army to invade Britain. The army had four legions, and this time the Romans conquered the southern half of Britain, and made it part of the Roman Empire.

The Romans ruled over England for 400 years. But in 410 A.D., the Romans left England because their homes in Italy were being attacked by fierce tribes and every soldier was needed.

Which then left Britain virtually undefended and it became possible for the Angles, Saxons and Jutes from across the North Sea who had been raiding the coast of Britain for a hundred years, to increase their pressure. Instead of raiding and then withdrawing, by about 450 A.D they were beginning to settle here. The invasion consisted of a series of attacks on different parts of the country over a period of years and under a number of leaders.

The Angles, Saxons, and Jutes are known as the Anglo-Saxons. The Angles and the Saxon tribes were the largest of the three attacking tribes and so we often know them as Anglo-Saxons. They shared the same language but were each ruled by different strong warriors.

The Jutes settled mainly in Kent and referred to themselves as 'the Kentings', which means the men living in Kent.

The Angles settled in East Anglia.

The Saxons settled in areas of Essex (East Saxons), Sussex (South Saxons), Middlesex (Middle Saxons), and Wessex (West Saxons).

So who do we have so far in our little cooking pot of genetic material?

Celts, Picts, Scots, Romans, Angles, Saxons and Jutes.

Confused yet? Well save your confusion for the time being as Ive got quite a bit more to add in part 3.


  1. I think I am following you thus far. Roll on part 3!


    Publish or Perish

  2. It is good to see the blog developing. I suggest you set up an email account just for the blog so that people can contact you. I've just discovered that I don't have a contact email for you - can you send it to me at monix123@gmail.com

  3. This is very interesting and I am learning a lot! I share in your vehement denial of owning any Welsh ancestry and think that it might be because I am a Lassy from Cheshire next door to Lancashire and and in the very 'olden days' both our Cheshire and Lancashire ancestors were constantly sniping with the Welsh. My own theory! Your American friend might be even more puzzled if you get into trying to explain the different characteristics of counties. ~ That should keep you going for the millennium! Nice Blog.

  4. Hahaha is this "Crinny" the "Crin" who I think she is? :-)

  5. Oh how lovely to "see" you again. I think that the last time that I saw you was when we came down to visit you at Arundel with my friend Elaine. I hope you're keeping well and apologise in advance if any of my future blogs get a bit bawdy :-) x

    ps. Thank you for your earlier comment - I now don't feel QUITE so bad for the "Welsh" comment hehehe

  6. Yes, I remember you coming to Arundel, but there are many other good memories too.
    I think I can cope with the bawdy but don't forget you Nan might be reading this!!


Thank you very much for taking the time to comment on my waffle. I'll reply when Im next online.