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King Arthur - HADRIAN'S WALL

This view of Hadrian's Wall is at Milecastle 39, near Steel Rigg as we look east from a ridge along Hadrian's Wall Path. Photo by Adam Cuerden who has released it into the public domain. Click on the image for a full-page view.

 

The northernmost frontier of Rome’s Empire was not far from Britannia’s border with Scotland (then called Caledonia).  It was not always a safe place.

In 80 A.D., Rome strengthened its defenses against northern intruders (like the ancient Picts, known to Rome as the “Painted Ones”) by building a road (referred to, years later, as “Stanegate,” meaning “stone road”) which extended from Carlisle, in the west, to Corbridge, in the east. 

Remains of Roman forts along that road still exist at Corbridge and Vindolanda (where excavations are ongoing).

But Stanegate Road did not keep out intruders. As a result, in approximately 122 A.D., while on a visit to the province of Britannia, the Roman Emperor Hadrian ordered a 73-mile wall (80 miles using Roman numbers or 118 kilometers using metric) to be built slightly north of Stanegate Road from Bowness (on the Solway Firth) in the west to Wallsend (on the River Tyne) in the east.

Part of the sea-to-sea wall (from Bowness to Birdoswald) was originally made of turf. The rest was made of stone.

Although sections of the stone wall remain, especially near Housesteads (which was called Vercovicium by the Romans), centuries ago people living close to the wall removed its stones to build castles, houses and churches.

What was it like at Hadrian's Wall?

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Author: Carole D. Bos, J.D. 5183stories and lessons created

Original Release: Jul 01, 2004

Updated Last Revision: Jan 28, 2016


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"HADRIAN'S WALL" AwesomeStories.com. Jul 01, 2004. Oct 15, 2019.
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