History – Dark Ages

The departure of the Romans from Britain did not happen overnight, but by the year 410 AD, their influence and control was largely over.

  The invasion of Britain by tribes from Northern Europe
The invasion of Britain by tribes from Northern Europe

At this time almost all of Britain was occupied by different Brythonic Tribes and there was no country called Wales.

From about the middle of the 5th century onwards a series of Germanic tribes started to invade and settle in Britain, largely in the South and East of what is now England.

The term ‘Wales or Welsh’ was coined by these Anglo Saxon tribes and means ‘foreigner.’ 

 

 

 

  Arturis Rex, image from historical source
Arturis Rex, image from historical source

This period in history is associated with King Arthur, a British warlord that fought off Saxon invasion. But did King Arthur exist, and if so where was he based?

The legend of King Arthur, Camelot, the Knights of the Round Table comes from the writings of a monk called Geoffrey of Monmouth in the 1100s, therefore, the depiction of Arthur as knight in armour and fighting on horseback, with high walled stone castles is a total misrepresentation. If Arthur did exist, he was a fierce chieftain who somehow managed to galvanise the independent Brythonic tribes to join forces and hold off the invasion of the Saxons, Angles and Jutes from Northern Europe.

Did King Arthur live in what is now Wales? The forensic historians, Wilson and Blackett, think he did – and that in fact history has muddled up two Arthurs who lived 250 years apart! The first was associated with Romanised Britain, whilst the second ruled over what is now South East Wales. 

  Stained Glass window depicting Arthur carrying the Cross of Christ at the battle of Mount Baden
Stained Glass window depicting Arthur carrying the Cross of Christ at the battle of Mount Baden

 

There are historical records that Arthur fought 10 battles against the Saxons, with the last one being staged at Mount Badon. There is a mountain called Badon near LLangenwyd- could this be the site of Arthur’s legendary victory over the Saxons?

Wilson and Blackett have undertaken considerable research and their theories are certainly very interesting – whether you agree with them or not!

So, could the legendary King Arthur have walked only a few miles from what is now Treoes?  No one knows, and we can only speculate. 

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