As with all sources, all those which have been listed below have their individual limitations. Historians who study Rome, Greece, Egypt, Mesopotamia, later Medieval Europe, or any subject in the modern world readily accept that fact and treat them accordingly because they literally have hundreds of available sources. Nearly every person or event has the advantage of multiple perspectives so that they are not forced to rely on just one to derive any accurate information.
British studies have not been as fortunate. Often there is only one source which discusses any particular incident, person, or chronology – and almost always its bias renders any information it gives questionable. This leaves the scholar with a dilemma; to accept the source as accurate and make use of its easily digestible information or to stop and question every aspect of that source for flaws and limitations and then only use the untainted information no matter how useless that decision makes the source. The former option is easier, and was used by nearly all scholars until the 1970s. However, it is also a naïve approach that produces a wide range of inaccurate and often illogical conclusions. Any curious scholar can see that in the legendary history of Gwynedd as proposed in Historia Brittonum, or of Kent beginning with Bede, or even of the Picts as given in their two different king-lists.
In the high-pressure world of academia there are ready-made reasons for cheating on the more thorough approach; it is time consuming and is unlikely to give definitive results. It is also exhausting to keep track of what details are likely colored by bias, which are inaccurate due to lack of information, and which can be verified.
However, it has the advantage that whichever results are arrived at are likely to be accurate. There should be no certainty in our conclusions because there is so much about the materials at our disposal that is entirely unknowable. At least by conducting an exhaustive study on each source there is less uncertainty.
With this in mind, modern scholars have chosen a middle path. When writing broad histories of the period, they have labeled individual sources as either wholly accurate, a good support for information found elsewhere (or their own theories), or entirely dubious. The best scholars have then used each source consistently from there on. The approach balances the time element of the critical approach with the blatant inaccuracies of the naïve analysis. The results have still been unreliable though. Most of the period sources have some useful and reliable information but none of them can be believed without question. By treating all sources as two-dimensional pieces in the three dimensional puzzle of post-Roman Britain, many scholars have done no justice to themselves or the period they study.
To put it another way, the study of post-Roman history began much like a child’s construction of reality; simplistic and fully understandable. As the study of Post-Roman Britain has matured, so our child’s understanding of the world has become more complex. To extend the metaphor, our hypothetical child became a cynical man in his late twenties during the 1970s, and now has finally reached a rational middle age.
Key to that deepening understanding has been a realization that the sources are more complex than a simple label of accurate or inaccurate. To be used properly, each one must be understood as the multifaceted work it is; a compilation of multiple sources often handled multiple writers, each of whome had their own limitations and biases for writing. We must also keep in mind that each source was composed by a person or persons with limitations and an agenda of his own. For instance, the chapters of Historia Brittonum run the entire gambit between historical truth and blatant lie, with folklore and myth taking up significant portions of several chapters.
Understanding that new reality, the next few chapters will be devoted to listing and then describing each source’s particular idiosyncrasies – reasons for being, points of origin, authors, patrons, and so forth. In chronological order, the works that will be discussed are Ammianus Marcellinus, the praise poems of Claudian, Prosper of Aquitaine’s annals, the letters of Sidonius Apollonaris and St. Patrick, Constantius’ Vita Germani, Zosimus, Gildas’s letters, Taliesin’s poems, Aneirin’s Y Gododdin, Gregory of Tours’ personal diary and contemporary history, Vita Samsoni, the Laws of Æthelberht, The Tribal Hidage, the letters of Columbanus, Vita Kentigerni, the Laws of Ine, Adomnan’s Vita Columbae, the anonymous Vita Cuthberti, Eddius Stephanus’ Vita Wilfridi, Bede’s writings, Historia Brittonum, The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, Fer ‘n Alban, Germanic, British, Irish, and Pictish genealogies, The Welsh Triads, saga poetry, various englynion and oral memories, and of course archeology. Together, this unassuming and short list of materials will be used to reconstruct the three hundred years of British history which Arthur’s name dominates. To do so best, the individual sources will be studied in the next two chapters. The two hypothetical sources, Northern Memorandum and the Kentish Source will be explored in a third chapter.
This chapter will begin with the Roman, or more accurately the continental, sources. The Roman Empire was an extremely centralized government. This is obvious at the top, where emperors had absolute power over every aspect of the government and were worshipped as gods by the citizens. One aspect of their control was that many governors were selected from among their personal friends and business partners. Another was that by law governors could only manage a province for a fixed number of years before returning to Rome and being replaced by another friend or associate of the emperor.
Each new governor brought along his own group of friends and trusted assistants to fill the highest echelons of the province’s bureaucracy, allowing state-educated people from poor families to hold the lower positions in the government. The system ideally designed to maintain loyalty because all the people in higher stations owed a personal debt to the governor, while he was personally obligated to the emperor for his position. Every person involved could best help themselves by serving the empire.
This connection to Rome was felt by the other citizens as well by the fifth century. Apart from Germanic mercenaries along its borders and slaves, every inhabitant of a Roman province was considered a Roman citizen. That meant that all laws applied equally to people in Israel and Rome, to the provinces of Britain and Italy. In its earliest days, Rome had connected its deities with the local gods but had allowed freedom of religion without penalty. With the institution of Christianity after 300, even that regional separation had disappeared. In all cultural and societal respects, a person from Greece or Syria was not a Greek or a Syrian, they were Romans. With this in mind it should surprise no one that there were no British historians in the empire, only Roman historians who mentioned Britain when it was prominent in Roman affairs. It is because of this mentality that our continental sources on Britain are so limited.
The mindset worked both ways. Rome may only have fallen in 476 with the city being sacked in 410, but the empire had been rotting from the inside for centuries. And Britain had been suffering with it. The renewed threat of invasion, now by Germanic tribes, in the late third century had produced a series of successful generals who had been declared emperor and had instigated a series of short civil wars. The twin changes of external threats and internal instability would fundamentally alter the stability of the empire.
To combat the problem, the empire was often divided in two during this period. That solution did simplify the defense of the empire, but the improved external security only inspired more internal conflicts. It became more and more commonplace for Roman soldiers on the borders to proclaim their general as the emperor. Once they had accepted the title tradition demanded that they return to Rome so that the Senate could ratify them. For many years in the third and fourth centuries, the emperor might be a usurper who had followed a usurper. Often these men spent a majority of their careers trying to stabilize the government while at the same time putting down revolts by other emperor hopefuls.
As was mentioned in the Introduction, elections in 406 and 407 led to the rise of Constantine. However, that was not the first instance in Britain. Carausius had been in Britain when he was declared the emperor in 286. So was Maximus in 367. Because of this, they figured in Roman histories.
The constant internal struggles generated their own problems. When the Germanic tribes had first come in contact with Rome during the third century they had been awed by its cultural achievements. That, as much as Roman successes in battle, had kept them from attempting an all-out invasion of the empire. Instead, the Romans had hired many of them to serve as foederati, mercenaries who patrolled the borders in exchange for food and supplies. However, watching their employers squabble among themselves only lessened Germanic awe for them. Internal conflicts also meant that free trade among the provinces was more difficult. Eventually, it led to the tribes receiving less and less of the food and supplies they had been promised.
They could only respond with force. The Visigoths sacked Rome in 410 and the Vandals in 455, but both tribes would leave the city out of respect. It was only in 476 that the Ostrogoths would subjugate the city. Even then their leader, Odoacer, would give the emperor a large pension.
There were also more hostile chieftains. Attila the Hun, “The Scourge of God”, would take tribute from the Eastern and Western Roman Empire during the 440s and 450s when he was not pillaging Europe. Less successful chieftains raided the European borders of the empire throughout the period.
During the fourth century newly accepted and still developing Christianity was also a major force. The last few decades of the fourth century and the first few of the fifth would see the rise of two mutually exclusive philosophies in the religion – the concepts of Free Will and Predestination. The former was championed by a British lawyer named Pelagius who would spend most of his career in Rome speaking about his ideas. He was opposed by St. Augustine of Hippo, a powerful speaker and the writer of several books, including City of God. Their dispute, fought between themselves and drawing in all the Christian leaders of the period, would only end with the Council of Carthage in 418 and the declaration of Pelagianism as a heresy.
With the external pressures of roving chieftains, the internal issues of so many upstart emperors, revolts by Germanic foederati, and the controversy of Rome’s one religion, it should not be surprising that Britain’s security and stability were not of great concern to the continent. Nor did Roman historians find what happened in Britain as worthwhile as the events on the continent. However, a few did mention the province of Britannia occasionally. But first, a brief critique of archeology.
With all of the literary and historical sources, we have pieces of information that were generated and recorded because someone in the past wanted the future to know about it. Without a doubt we have the information given to us by the craftiest, wealthiest, and luckiest people of Post-Roman Britain. With archeology there is no intent in what we find. No warrior wanted to leave his sword behind; he wanted to either use it in the next life or hoped his son would use it. Farmers did not want their homes abandoned; they wanted their descendants to live in it. In that respect, archeology deals with less bias than any other historical study.
The study does have some serious drawbacks, though. For one, every potentially useful site cannot be excavated. Even if they could find the funding to feed and shelter sometimes dozens of volunteers, many places of interest are in the middle of private or heavily traveled areas. In Britain, permission is only given for some excavations when a site might be destroyed by new construction. Even then it is limited by time, money, and the area of study.
On more accessible sites, modern archeological methods take a more conservative approach. Experts exam in the soil using sonar and other techniques and use the information to pick out the sections most likely to produce useful artifacts and then only dig there. Usually, it is only a small portion of the structure. This approach is less intrusive but gives fewer artifacts and allows for less surprise. It is only when a broad range of excavations return similar results that a pattern may be roughly determined and any one object’s nature might be understood. Even then, looking at the materials without the perspective of modern eyes is one of the more difficult aspects of archeology.
Another area of difficulty is interpreting the results of an individual dig without placing it against a context of already accepted truths. In British studies, the pseudo-historian Geoffrey of Monmouth has long been known as a poor historian who took from whatever sources he could find to create a coherent history. However, his work was the first attempt to write a full history of the period, and its storyline has proven to be a seductive place from which to reconstruct the fifth and sixth centuries.
Dating, too, is notoriously difficult among artifacts – usually nothing closer than a range of several decades is even possible. That is not a consistent problem. A large number of a specific brooch or type of pottery might allow scholars to guess a tighter date-range. On rare occasion, an artifact is even found in context with a relatively unused coin and a specific year can be determined. At other times tree ring dating (dendrochronology) of a large number of similar items can reveal a narrow range of years for a building.
However, such a tight dating is not generally the rule. Expensive or beautiful items often became heirlooms. Good armaments or even plows might be used for some generations after they were made. This can throw off the dating by as much as a century. The reality of archaeology is that it is useless for absolute chronology and often difficult in establishing a relative date. It is of greatest use in understanding the culture of the people, and can only be done safely with the assistance of written sources. Any use of the field beyond that must be purely speculative.
Ammianus Marcellinus is the first person to write about Britain after 367. He was born in Antioch around 365 and spent the first part of his life as a soldier. After he retired he came to Rome where he wrote his history, which ended in 378. Ammianus could not have written before 400 and probably started a few years after.
Ammianus’ background suggests a thorough knowledge of Roman tactics as well as a limited understanding of Rome’s larger military strategies.
His problem is that he had a limited knowledge of Britain. For instance, his first relevant mention is of two Germanic chieftains coming to Britain as foederati. They are the only two foederati he names in Britain during the second half of the fourth century. His testimony is contrary to what can be constructed from the archeology of the period and several official Roman records. The other evidence shows that Germanic posts were set up along the southern and eastern coasts of Britain. Standard foederati practice was that each post was settled by an entire tribe – chieftain, warriors, women, and children. Each foederati station in the archeological record means a different tribe under a distinct chieftain.
Foederati activity was so intense in the late fourth century because their cousins, other Germanic tribes, were preying on ships coming to and from Britain. That is probably why Ammianus knew so little about Britain. What Ammianus does not have in volume, however, he more than makes up for in quality. He comes across as neutral every time he mentions the province of Britain.
Claudian was a poet working for Emperor Hadrian in the years around 400. His favorite subject was Stilicho, the most powerful and successful general of the era. Claudian makes no secret of his partisanship. On the other hand, he could not outright lie about Stilicho and his activities, either. He was a contemporary to both his hero and Hadrian, and Hadrian may well have known about the events he praised. If he had misrepresented the truth and Hadrian had found out about it he might have been executed for it. Stilicho was in 408.
Prosper of Aquitaine wrote in the decades following 400. He was a staunch supporter of Augustine and Predestination in the Christian debates of his time. For this reason he might have made a paper tiger out of some of Free Will’s arguments and in speaking of St. Germanus, the hero who went to Britain to end Pelagianism, he might have been expected to exaggerate his exploits there. However, his only contribution to this study is his date of 429 for the visit. As he was a contemporary to the event he must have been accurate; he had access to the information and if he had altered the date it would have affected his credibility in areas that were more important to him, and more subjective.
Prosper is followed by the Gallic Chronicles, two simple annals likely written by a pair of holy men from Gallia Narbonensis. Both chronicles continue the history begun by Eusebius (776 B.C.E.-325 C.E.) and continued by his son Jerome (325-379) beginning in August of 378 A.D. They are known by the year in which they end, giving the Chronicle of 452 and the Chronicle of 511.
Both chronicles are considered fairly accurate about the continental information they report. However, Britain would have been a different story. As has been seen, the English Channel was being pirated by Saxon tribes during the fifth century. St. Germanus was able to cross it, but he was a former general and a political leader who had unusual resources at his disposal. For merchants and other less prominent travelers the journey would have been too dangerous to risk, which meant that commerce and with it information coming out of Britain would have been trickling out of Britain at this time. There would have been no way of measuring the accuracy of whatever data they were given, either. These writers were recording rumors and the information they give should be treated as such.
The one unique piece of information they give about Britain is that the island was overrun by the Germanic tribes in the 440s. The Chronicle of 452 dates the event to 441/2 while the Chronicle of 412 says it occurred in 440. We know they are wrong because British and Pictish kingdoms would exist later in the fifth century. The Germanic tribes did not even make an island-wide raid because there is no evidence of it in the archeological record. Knowing the limitations of the source, Dr. Miller suggested it was a ghost event, though most scholars have assumed the entry must have been based on some real incident and have suggested that this 441 was the year all communications with Britain went dark, probably the time of Gildas’ mercenary revolt.
The next historian to mention Britain was Zosimus, a pagan who held a position at the royal court of Anastasius I (491-518) in Constantinople. That is where he wrote his Historia Nova, which contains our most thorough explanation about the events at the end of Roman Britain. There are two unique things to know when reading Zosimus. The first is that he was a pagan, making him the only non-Christian source for the end of the Roman Empire. The second is that he relies exclusively on one source per period – to the extent that his tone and the choice of facts given when he changes from one source to another and that he gives no information when his sources did not cover that year.
For the years after 407 that source was Olympiodorus of Thebes. However, with Olympiodorus he was less faithful than with previous sources. Very little of his writings have survived, and those only as fragments. What we do know from those fragments is that Zosimus often disagreed with him. Nor is Zosimus’ absolute chronology very strong; on the rare occasion that he gives a date for any Western European event more reliable sources normally give different years.
On the other hand, Zosimus is generally more even-handed than his Christian contemporaries when discussing the politics and personalities of the Eastern Roman Empire. He could be overly harsh on the Christian emperors, but he has never been accused of an outright falsehood.
Zosimus’ relative chronology of the West seems reasonably accurate even if his absolute chronology his unreliable so that in light of his (or Olympiodorus’) general precision otherwise, it seems likely that other factors were involved. When speaking of Britain in particular, distance must have been a significant dynamic. The Eastern Roman Empire had no interest in reclaiming it, nor had any Western Roman ruler since Honorius. For that reason, it seems likely that any errors in his work were due more to an inability to obtain correct information or a lack of interest in his subject (as he did not gather information himself) than to any sinister motivation.
The Vita Germani, probably written between 480 and 490 but definitely before 494, is the first personal account of a continental visit to post-Roman Britain. As the name suggests, the book comes from a biography of St. Germanus of Auxerre; it was designed specifically to stress the religious authority of its hero while minimizing any negative aspects of his life.
In the later Middle Ages, the writing of vitae, the biographies of holy people, would develop into an entire genre full of recurring miracles and other supernatural elements. Written at the very beginning, though, the Vitae Germani has none of that. It has little more than a few exaggerations of events. We also know that Constantius, the author, used St. Lupus as his primary source for the British information. Lupus was Germanus’ companion on his first trip to Britain.
Several authors have noted that Constantius is extremely precise in his continental details. That is contrasted with his extremely vague reporting on Britain. For instance, he only names Elafius specifically and never gives the villages, cities, regions, or provinces that Germanus visits. Because of his disparity on this point, his lack of information about Britain is likely more a measure of an old man’s memory and the fact that communications with Britain was difficult than to any intentional deception on the part of the author.
Constantius writes about two voyages to Britain. The first, naturally, contains the most details and includes a miraculous calming of the sea, Elafius, the “Halleluiah” victory, a debate between Predestination and Free Will. The second trip has many similarities to the first. Several scholars, primarily Thompson, have provided good evidence that it did happen. There is always the possibility, though, that Lupus provided Constantius with just enough mutually exclusive materials for Constantius to conclude that there had been two distinct voyages to Britain.
Though Procopius is the next source for the period, he provides some information about Britain from the early fifth century up until his own time. Procopius was born in Caesarea, Palestine around 490 – the same era the Vita Germani was written. An intelligent and well-educated scholar, he served under Belisarius for most of his career.
Procopius admired Belisarius, and wrote about his campaigns. He also wrote a Secret History, in which he attacked both Belisarius and the emperor Justinian. His history is what is of interest to scholars. Despite its obvious bias, it contains useful inside information about the goings-on of the Byzantine Empire.
However, when dealing with Western Europe, and especially with Britain, Procopius is neither reliable nor does he have inside information. During his career, which spanned mosr of the first half of the sixth century and into the second, Belisarius managed to conquer Italy for a short time. However, no further conquests were attempted to the West. Nor were there any secure trade routes between Italy and Britain. The only information Procopius had access to was the occasional diplomat who might have been in or near Britain and other second or third-hand sources.
The sparcity of his sources shows in the few times Procopius mentions Britain. He seems to have been unaware that Constantine had been immediately preceded by two other usurpers. He thinks that Britain is ruled by three over-kings – of the Britons, the Angles, and the Frisians. He is not even sure about what to call Britain, Britannia or Brittia. His information has been qualified as hearsay and will be treated as such.
With Gregory of Tours we come again to a more reliable source. Gregory was born in what is now modern France in about 538. He was descended from a Roman patrician family that had survived the Frankish conquest and retained its status through its work in the church. Gregory lived his entire life as an aristocrat in a stable kingdom.
His family was especially prominent in Tours, where his relatives had been several of its bishops. His mother moved him there after the death of his father. He was consecrated to the office of bishop in 573.
As a bishop and a member of one of the most prominent families in Gaul, Gregory was exposed to political and ecclesiastical information throughout the kingdom. He also would have had a limited awareness of happenings in Britain. Because of his prominent family and his 21-year tenure as a bishop he would have had first-hand knowledge of every significant event in the region for the last half of the sixth century. He is as close to a firsthand account of Britain in the sixth century as could be hoped for.
He is also an ideal historian. Gregory never formed a themed history in which he put down one religion in favor of another or bent historical facts to meet his priorities. What he wrote instead was an extended chronicle which he updated after every significant event in Gaul. The only editing he made was to interpolate materials he found important in retrospect. There is also strong evidence that he occasionally used his writings to set the record of his own relationships straight. Previous authors have also mentioned a number of simple mistakes. However, he has never been accused of giving false information intentionally.
Gregory is of greatest use as a recorder of Breton affairs, a people foreign to the Franks but who had forged small kingdoms on the western coast of the kingdom. The Bretons gave their allegiance to the Frankish kings but did not take part in Frankish politics or religious affairs whenever possible. Instead, their leaders fought amongst themselves in endless rivalries. Gregory clearly enjoyed reporting on them, using their bickering as a sort of comic aside to his writing because they were such a small and inconsequential group in the greater scheme of Frankish politics. It is even feasible that he has omitted episodes when they were lacking in this respect.
The next continental source is the Vita Samsoni, which is possibly the oldest surviving British saint’s life. In the past, it was assumed that the biography was written in the ninth century, when most of the other Breton vitae were published. However, that position has lost ground. Ninth-century Breton vitae focus on Breton independence from France; in the Vita Samsoni, the Frankish kings are occasionally the saint’s allies and not his enemies. The author claims to have been the great-nephew of Samson and to have consulted with a very old contemporary in writing the book. Nothing in the work contradicts that claim, and in fact the name-forms and other details in the extant manuscripts support a seventh century date. The fact that it is generally free of fantastic elements also favors an earlier rather than later date.
Accepting it was written in the early seventh century the vita still has its own particular problems. For one, it was written in Brittany so that the writer could not have had easy access to any of the sites Samson had been active at.
Secondly, even if the author was his grand-nephew and used a contemporary for some of his information, there was still an entire lifetime between the events of the vita and the time they were written down. During those intervening decades many important details may have been forgotten or rationalized for any of a number of unforeseen reasons.
Still, as a near-contemporary source the information it provides is invaluable. The events and issues of Samson’s life, as well as the saint’s perspective on contemporary events and personalities, is a useful supplement to the information to be gleaned from annals and histories.
The Ravenna Cosmography is the last of our continental sources. Written in the seventh century by an anonymous Ravenna cleric, the work lists all of the Roman units in Europe along with their current locations. It also gives sources for each region, though they are all otherwise unknown. Because of this, it was traditionally believed to have been taken from a Roman itinerary. The problem with the cosmography is that we know some of its information is inaccurate. For instance, many of the locations where it says there are soldiers had been long abandoned by 700. More importantly for this book, the preamble names the Saxons as newcomers to Britain whereas traditional history has placed that event at around 450 and the author’s own work has shown that Germanic migrations began in the late fourth century. In the past, it was assumed that in not claiming to use a known scholar the Ravenna Cosmography was more credible. It now seems more likely that the sources were invented.
The safest assumption to make is that the cleric who composed The Ravenna Cosmography gathered the most recent information he had and synthesized it. Realizing that without sources his work would look like fantasy he created them. The result was a haphazard picture of Europe that was current in some places but hopelessly outdated in others. Unfortunately, his information was at least three hundred years behind when it came to Britain, which makes the document useless for the current study.
If we can accept that the Vita Samsoni was written in the seventh century we have a single continental source that gives more information than one or two dates or the third-hand explanation of one or two events in Britain.
The rest are exactly that, two-dimensional sources of information for the period. Not that they have not been useful together in the reconstruction of the fifth century and the change in dynamics during the sixth and seventh centuries, but they are not as useful as they could be if even one of them could give a context for the events they record.
This lack of perspective is not surprising. As we have seen even with the limited continental source materials, communication with Britain was very difficult during this period. The English Channel was flooded with Saxon pirates during the late fourth century and this continued till the late fifth century. By the time that era was over, the Germanic peoples controlled the entire eastern and most of the southern coastline, separating the British from the continent. The Germanic peoples who stood as the barrier were not yet formed into kingdoms that might have welcomed communications and even trade. They were instead non-Christians more interested in cattle-raiding among each other than in anything the continent had to offer. It was their lack of awareness more than anything that limited the continent’s knowledge of Britain during the period.
1 I will explore the lesser government positions in Chapter 6. For now it is only important to understand that they were not personally connected to the governor or the emperor.
2 A modern example might serve well here. In the United States, the “Peace” symbol is the index and middle finger pointed in a “V” with the palm or the knuckles facing a person. In Britain and Commonwealth nations, “Peace” is strictly where the palm is facing the person being communicated with. The reverse, with the knuckle facing them, is an expletive. Taken within a U.S. context, an insult could be interpreted as just the opposite.
3 Cameron, Claudian: Poetry and Propaganda at the Court of Hadrian, (Oxford, 1970).
4 Though a layman he defended Augustine’s position in De vocatione omnium gentium and responded to the opposition of his day, going so far as to work through Pope Leo I.
5 Jones and Casey, “The Gallic Chronicle Restored: A Chronology for the Anglo-Saxon Invasions and the End of Roman Britain”, Brit 19 (Stroud, 1978), 367.
6 Miller (“The last British entry in the ‘Gallic Chronicles’”, Brit 9 (Stroud, 1978b), 315-318) did believe the original text had been heavily edited while Burgess (“The Dark Ages Return to Fifth-Century Britain: The ‘Restored’ Gallic Chronicle Exploded”, Brit 21 (Stroud, 1990), 185-195) questioned the inconsistent dating.
7 Modern scholarship has generally leaned toward believing the corrected date is 441. Chronica Minora I, (Berlin, 1886), 515-660, ed. Theodor Mommsen; Miller, “The last British entry in the ‘Gallic Chronicles’”, Brit 9 (Stroud, 1978b), 315-318; Jones and Casey, “The Gallic Chronicle Restored: A Chronology for the Anglo-Saxon Invasions and the End of Roman Britain”, Brit 19 (Stroud, 1978), 367-398; Burgess, “The Dark Ages Return to Fifth-Century Britain: The ‘Restored’ Gallic Chronicle Exploded”, Brit 21 (Stroud, 1990), 185-195.
8 For instance, he uses Eunapius up to 404 and Olymiodorus from 407, leaving 405 and 406 absent in his history.
9 Mendelssohn, Zosimi comitiset exadvocati fisci historia nova, (Lipsiae, rep. 1963).
10 Levison, “Bischof of Germanus of Auxerre und die Quellen zu seiner Geschichte”, Neus Archiv der Gesellschaft für ältere deutsche Geschichtskunde 29 (1903-4), 112; Bardy, Saint Germain d’Auxerre et Son Temps, (Auxerre, 1950), 96-97; Thompson, St. Germanus of Auxerre and the end of Roman Britain, (Woodbridge, 1984), 26.
11 Bardy, Saint Germain d’Auxerre et Son Temps, (Auxerre, 1950), 107; Thompson, St Germanus of Auxerre and the end of Roman Britain, (Woodbridge, 1984), 8-14.
12 Thompson argued passionately and persuasively to that effect in St Germanus of Auxerre and the end of Roman Britain, (Woodbridge, 1984), 13-14.
13 St Germanus of Auxerre and the end of Roman Britain, (Woodbridge, 1984). However, it should be remembered that there is no overriding reason why Germanus visited Britain a second time and no external source corroborates Constantius.
14 E.A. Thompson, trained as a classical scholar, occasionally used him in his work on reconstructing fifth-century Britain.
17 8.20.4-5; Thompson, “Procopius on Brittia and Britannia” Classical Quarterly 30, (London, 1980), 498-507.
18 Thorpe lists them (Gregory of Tours, The History of the Franks, trans. and ed. Lewis Thorpe, (New York, 1974), 26), they are mainly enrichments of his religious passages. He did apparently write drafts of Book IV and possibly earlier books which he had used other sources to write about.
19 Thorpe again lists these (32). They are his quarrel with Felix, his argument with Chilperic, and his personal trial at Berny-Rivière for having slandered Queen Fredegund among others.
20 Dalton, The History of the Franks by Gregory of Tours, (Oxford, 1927), 36.
21 The Life of Samson of Dol, trans. Thomas Taylor, (Llanerch, rep. 1991), xxxix; Poulin, “Hagiographie et Politique. La Première vie de S. Samson de Dol” Francia 5 ((Paris, 1977), 1-26.
22 Chapter 26 and 27. Duine, “La vie de S. Samson, à propos d’un ouvrage récent”, Annales de Bretagne 28 (Paris, 1912-13), 332-56; Davies, “Property Rights and Property Claims in Welsh “Vitae” of the Eleventh Century”, Hagiographie, cultures, et sociétés ive-xiie siécles, ed. Evelyne Patlagean and Pierre Riché, (Paris, 1981), 515; Wright, “Gildas’s Geographical Perspective: Some Problems”, Gildas: new approaches, eds. David N. Dumville and Michael Lapidge. (Woodbridge, 1984), 199 fn. 25; Sharpe, “Gildas as Father of the Church”, Gildas: new approaches, ed. David N. Dumville and Michael Lapidge, (Woodbridge, 1984), 193 fn. 25.
23 Richmond and Crawford, “The British Section of the Ravenna Cosmography”, Archaeologia Cambrensis 93 (1949), 1.