glasgow archaeological society.
Paulus Orosius, Hist., vii., cap. 17 Where [i.e., in Britain], after often
(ed. Zangemeister, 1S82). Mon. Hist. fighting great and severe battles,
Brit., I., lxxix. Severus thought to separate the
tXbi magnis gravibusque pracliis annexed portion of the island from
saepe gestis receptara partem insulae the other unsubdued tribes by a vallum,
a eaeteris indomitis gentibus vallo dis- So he drew a great fosse and a very
tinguendam [Severus] putavit. Itaque strong vallum, fortified with numerous
magnam fossam firmissimumque val- towers upon it, for 132 miles from sea
lum, crebris insuper turribus eommuni- to sea.
turn per centum triginta et duo millia
passuum a mari ad mare duxit.
This last passage enjoyed the distinction of beiug not only a principal source
used by the Venerable Bede, but also of being rendered into Anglo-Saxon by
King Alfred the Great, of whose translation it forms chapter 15.
Cassiodorus, writing about a. d. 520, follows those already quoted.
Cassiodorus, Chronicon (Migne, lxix., During the consulship of Aper and
p. 1235). Mon. Hist. Brit., I., lxxxii. Maximus [a.d. 207], Severus made war
Aper et Maximus.— His coss. upon the Britons, where, in order to
Severus in Britannos bellum movit make the annexed provinces more
ubi ut receptas provmcias ab incursione secure from barbarian incursion, he
barbarica facevet securiores vallum per drew a vallum for 132 miles from sea
cxxxii. passuum millia a mari ad mare to sea.
Of course, no modern writer entertains the belief that
Severus was really the founder of the Antonine Wall. The
opinions of Skene and Mommsen, derived from a consideration
of these authorities, are that Severus reconstructed it in the course
of his Caledonian expedition (208-211 a.d.),1 at which time Skene
surmises the fosse may have been added to an originally ditchless
vallum, and the vallum itself repaired and strengthened. Present
historical opinion appears to be divided on the interpretation of
the problem. Mr. Haverfield, in a paper printed (Appendix I.)
at the end of this Eeport, produces evidence to show that the
whole work was constructed by Pius, and lost by the Romans in
the reign either of his successor Marcus or of Marcus' son
Commodus, that is, circa 160-190 a.d.
After the time of Severus, we hear no more directly concerning
the wall until the reign of the Emperor Valentinian, who sent
his general, Theodosius, to Britain in the year 369, in which
year he was himself at Trier and fighting on the Rhine. During
the preceding half-century, the Picts and Scots had been making-
continual inroads, and had become a source of intolerable trouble
to the Romanised part of the island.
Theodosius strengthened the Roman defences of Britain
1 Rhys' Celtic Britain (ed. 2), 92-3, takes the same view.