|The Antiquity of LONDON. The Buildings. The Wall. ||7
Again, London must be a Place of Strength when Paulinus Suetonius, in his Return
from Mora, i.e. Anglesey, marched with so much Resolution through the midst of the
Enemies Country, to possess himself of it, with an Intention to make it the Seat of the
War, as Tacitus saith. But that not finding there so considerable a Number of Roman
Forces as he expected, he altered his Purpose, and chose to preserve the rest with the
Loss of one Town. This affords an Argument of the Bigness of London at that Time.
For he had now in all about Ten thousand Men well armed: But this Number was
insufficient to defend it. Tacitus speaks
as a very pleasant Place, saying, The
Sweetness of the Place tempted some to stay behind, who were all cut off by Boadicia.
Nor is there any Reason to think the Romans built the City of London, where there was
neither a Colony, nor a Municipium, as the said Bishop seems to confess. Nor doth it
appear that they had built any Cities in Britain at this Time: No, not Camalodunum,
which was a Roman Colony; nor Verulamium, a Municipal or Free City, enjoying their
own Municipal Laws, by the Favour and Allowance of the Romans. Nor is it probable
that in so short a Time, as from Julius Cæsar to Nero, in whose Reign Tacitus
gives the former Account of London, could become so famous for her Merchants and
Provisions. Nor yet do the Roman Histories give any Account why TRINOBANTUM
should in so few Years change its Name into LONDON. But the British History
accounts for this Name; namely, that Lud, Brother to Cassivelan, renewed the Walls of
it, and called it LUD-DIN, that is, the City of LUD, or Llwyd; which to this Day is a
known British Name, signifying GREY in English. And it came by an easy Variation
to be called Lundin; and one of its Gates, near which LUD was interred, called Porth
Lud, or Ludgate, as it is called to this Day. This Lud was Son to Belinus Magnus;
whose Name is still continued on Belinsgate. The Bishop of Worcester does not
pretend to derive London from any Latin Word; a Presumption that it is not of a Roman
Original. Ammianus Marcellinus, who flourished A. D. 380. called it
Vetuslum Oppidum, i.e. an ancient Town, and makes it to
be the City of the Trinobantes. He calls it Lundinum. Tacitus and Ptolomy,
Londinium; Stephanus, Lindonion.
London in the British Times a Place of
Tacit. Annal. 14. Loci Dulcedo.
London why so called from Bristish
Lastly, The same Learned Welshman observeth the Antiquity of London by a Coin of
the Emperor Claudius relating to Britain; which Camden speaks of: It had Britannicus
on one side, and on the Reverse, METROPOLIS ETIMINII BA. LO. Where Camden
Etiminii to be the same with Adminii. Which Adminius was the Son of Cunobelin,
King of Camalodunum; and being expelled by his Father, fled to Caligula when he was
making War upon the Ocean, as Suetonius
And that it is not unlikely he might
ingratiate himself with Britannicus, the Son of Claudius, or with Claudius himself, who
was also stiled Britannicus; and so have been constituted King of London, as BA. LO.
i.e. BASILEOS LONDINI, may import: Since that Cities were sometimes bestowed by
the Romans upon the Britains, as Camalodunum was upon Cunobelin; and some Cities
A Roman Coin shewing the Antiquity of
And yet after all, let me subjoin what another learned Antiquarian affirms: That Geffrey
of Monmouth cannot be credited, who wrote that London was a City in the British
Times, a City compassed with Walls, and fortified with innumerable Towers; since the
Britains in those Days were Barbarous and Savage; and their Towns no other than
Groves and Thickets, invironed only with an Hedge and a Ditch. Nor was there a
Brick among them; nor at all, (as far as the Romans at their Descent here could observe)
had they ever gone about to raise one Stone upon another.
London no British City.
John Woodward, M.D.
Now a Word or two concerning the Buildings of the City.
In Q. Elizabeth's Time were strict Proclamations against Inmates, and Increase of New
Buildings in the City; yet to small Effect. In the 2. Reg. Jacob. I. An. 1605, Mar. 1. A
Proclamation was issued forth, forbidding all Increase of New Building within the
City, and one Mile thereof; and likewise
commanding all Persons henceforwards to
build their Forefronts and Windows, either of Brick or Stone; as well for Decency, as
by reason all great and well-grown Woods were much spent and wasted; so as Timber
for Shipping waxed scarce. But this also had little Effect. When upon Octob. 10.
1607, Proclamation was made again to the same Purpose. And Octob. 16. some were
censured in the Star-Chamber, for building contrary to the Tenor of the Proclamation.
Again, by a Proclamation, An. 1614, all Commissioners were required to proceed with
all strictness against all Offenders in this sort. From this time began the new
Reformation of Building. The first House of Note thus Built was an House in the
Strand belonging to Colonel Cecil: After that, an House near Drapers-Hall. Next to
that, a Goldsmith's House in Cheapside, over-against Sadlers-Hall: And a Leather-
seller's House in St. Paul's Church-Yard, near the Northgate; who was compelled
thereunto, after he had set up his House, being all of Timber.]
Proclamations against New Buildings.
E. How's Chron.
The Antiquity of the Wall built about the
Walls when first in Britain. For Defence
against the Picts and Scots .
The Maintenance and Reparation of the Wall of
The ancient Wall near Bishopsgate
The Dimensions of it ;
And a Computation of the Quantity of Ground
within the Walls .
IN few Years after, as Simeon of Durham (an ancient
Writer) reporteth, Helen, the Mother of Constantine the Great, was the first
inwalled this City about the Year of Christ CCCVI. But however, those Walls of
might be builded by the said Helen, yet the Britains, I know, had no Skill of
with Stone; as may appear by that which followeth about the Year of Christ
CCCXCIX, when Arcadius and Honorius, the Sons of Theodofius Magnus, go-
verned the Empire, the one in the East, the other in the West. For Honorius
received Britain, the City of Rome was invaded and destroyed by the Goths.
which Time the Romans left to rule in Britain, as being employed in Defence of
Territories nearer home. Whereupon the Britains, not able to defend themselves
the Invasions of their Enemies, were many Years together under the Oppression of
most cruel Nations, the Scots
The Wall, by whom first built.
Simeon of Durham.
The Romans left to govern Britain.
The Scots and Picts invade Britain.