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correfpondence with the new comers, whom they confidered as intruders upon their property."
The inland inhabitants are reprefented as extremely numerous, living in cottages thatched with ftraw, and feeding large herds of cattle. They lived moftly upon milk or flesh procured by the chace. What
cloaths they wore to cover any part of their bodies, were ufually the skins of beafts; but much of their bodies, as the arms, legs, and thighs, was left naked, and those parts were ufually painted blue. Their hair, which was long, flowed down upon their backs and fhoulders, while their beards were kept clofe fhaven, except upon the upper lip, where it was fuffered to grow. The drefs of favage nations is every where pretty much the fame, being calculated rather to inspire terror than to excite love or refpect.
As to their government, it confifted of feveral Imall principalities, each under its refpective leader; and this feems to be the earlieft mode of dominion with which mankind are acquainted, and deduced from the natural privileges of paternal authority. Upon great, or uncommon dangers, a commander in chief was chofen by common confent, in a general affembly; and to him was committed the conduct of the general intereft, the power of making peace, or leading to war.
Their forces confifted chiefly of foot, and yet they could bring a confiderable number of horfe into the field upon great occafions. They likewife ufed chariots in battle, which, with fhort fcythes fastened to the ends of the axle-trees, inflicted terrible wounds, Spreading terror and devastation wherefoever they drove. Nor while the chariots were thus deftroying, were the warriors who conducted them unemployed. Thefe darted their javelirs against the enemy, ran along the beam, leapt on the ground, refumed their feat, ftopt, or turned their horfes at full fpeed, and
fometimes cunningly retreated, to draw the enemy into confufion.
The religion of the Britons was one of the most confiderable parts of their government; and the Druids, who were the guardians of it, poffeffed great authority among them. No fpecies of fuperftition was ever more terrible than theirs; befides the fevere penalties which they were permitted to inflict in this world, they inculcated the eternal tranfmigration of fouls, and thus extended their authority as far as the fears of their votaries. They facrificed human victims, which they burned in large wicker idols, made fo capacious as to contain a multitude of perfons at once, who were thus confumed together. To these rites, tending to imprefs ignorance with awe, they added the aufterity of their manners, and the simplicity of their lives. They lived in woods, caves, and hollow trees; their food was acorns and berries, and their drink water; by thefe arts, they were not only refpected, but almost adored by the people.
It may be easily fuppofed, that the manners of the people took a tincture from the difcipline of their teachers. Their lives were fimple, but they were marked with cruelty and fiercenefs; their courage was great, but neither dignified by mercy nor perfeve
The Britons had long remained in this rude but independent ftate, when Cæfar having over-run Gaul with his victories, and willing ftill farther to extend his fame, determined upon the conqueft of a country that feemed to promise an easy triumph. When the troops deftined for the expedition were embarked, he fet fail for Britain about midnight, and the next morning arrived on the coaft near Dover, where he faw the rocks and cliffs covered with armed men to oppofe his landing.
The Britons had chofen Caffibelaunus for their commander in chief, but the petty princes under B 2
his command, either defiring his ftation, or fufpecting his fidelitry, threw off their allegiance. Some of them fled with their forces into the internal parts of the kingdom, others fubmitted to Cæfar, till at length Caffibelaunus himself, weakened by fo many defertions, refolved upon making what terms he was able while he yet had power to keep the field. The conditions offered by Cæfar, and accepted by him were, that he should fend to the continent double the num⚫ber of hoftages at firft demanded, and that he should acknowledge fubjection to the Romans. Cæfar, however, was obliged to return once more to compel the Britons to compleat their ftipulated treaty.
Upon the acceffion of Auguftus, that emperor had formed a design of visiting Britain, but was diverted from it by an unexpected revolt of the Pannoni
Tiberius, wifely judging the empire already too extenfive, made no attempt upon Britain. From that time the natives began to improve in all the arts which contribute to the advancement of human nature.
The wild extravagancies of Caligula, by which he threatened Britain with an invafion, ferved rather to expose him to ridicule than the island to danger. At length the Romans, in the reign of Claudius, began to think seriously of reducing them under their dominion. The expedition for this purpose was conducted in the beginning by Plautius and other commanders, with that fucce's which ufually attended the Roman
Caractacus was the firft who seemed willing, by a vigorous effort, to rescue his country and repel its infulting and rapacious conquerors. This rude foldier, though with inferior forces, continued, for above nine years, to oppofe and harrafs the Romans; till at length he was totally routed, and taken prifoner by Oftorius Scapula, who fent him in triumph to Rome, While Caractacus was leading thro' Rome,
he appeared no way dejected at the amazing concourse of spectators that were gathered upon this occafion, but cafting his eyes on the fplendours that furrounded him, "Alas, cried he, how is it poffible that a people poffeffed of fuch magnificence at home could envy me an humble cottage in Britain!" The emperor was affected with the British hero's misfortunes, and won by his addrefs. He ordered him to be unchained upon the fpot, and fet at liberty with the rest of the captives..
The cruel treatment of Boadicea, queen of the Iceni, drove the Britons once more into open rebellion. Prafatagus, king of the Iceni, at his death had bequeathed one-half of his dominions to the Romans, and the other to his daughters, thus hoping by the facrifice of a part, to fecure the reft in his family: but it had a different effect; for the Roman procurator immediately took poffeffion of the whole: and when Boadi cea, the widow of the deceased, attempted to remor ◄ ftrate, he ordered her to be fcourged like a flave, and violated the chastity of her daughters. Thefe outrages were fufficient to produce a revolt throughout the ifland. The Iceni, as being the moft deeply interested in the quarrel, were the first to take arms; all the other states foon followed the example; and Boadi◄ cea, a woman of great beauty and mafculine fpirit, was appointed to head the common forces, which amounted to two hundred and thirty thousand fighting men. Thefe, exafperated by their wrongs, attacked feveral of the Roman fettlements and colonies with fuccefs. Paulinus, who commanded the Roman forces, haftened to relieve London, which was already a flourishing colony; but found on his arrival that it would be requifite for the general fafety to abandon that place to the mercil fs fury of the enemy. London was foon therefore reduced to afhes; fuch of the inhabitants as remained in it were maffacred; and the Romans, with all other ftrangers,
to the number of feventy thoufand, were cruelly put to the fword. Flushed with thefe fucceffes, the Britons no longer fought to avoid the enemy, but boldly came to the place where Paulinus awaited their arrival, pofted in a very advantageous manner with a body of ten thousand men. The battle was obftinate and bloody. Boadicea herfelf appeared in a chariot with her two daughters, and harrangued her army with mafculine intrepidity; but the irregular and undifciplined bravery of her troops was unable to refift the cool intrepidity of the Romans. They were routed with great flaughter, eighty thousand perished in the field, and an infinite number were made prifoners, while Boadicea herself, fearing to fall into the hands of the enraged victor, put an end to her life by poifon.
The general who finally established the dominion of the Romans in this ifland was Julius Agricola, who governed it during the reigns of Vefpafian, Titus, and Domitian, and distinguished himself as well by his courage as humanity.
For feveral years after the time of Agricola, a profound peace feems to have prevailed in Britain, and little mention is made of the affairs of the island by Alayhiftorian.
At length, however, Rome, that had for ages given laws to nations, and diffufed flavery and oppreffion over the know world, at length began to fink under her own magnificence. Mankind, as if by a general confent, rofe up to vindicate their natural freedom; almost every nation afferting that independence which they had been long fo unjustly deprived of.
During thefe ftruggles the British youth were frequently drawn away into Gaul, to give ineffectual fuccour to the various contenders for the empire, who, failing in every attempt, only left the name of tyrants behind them. In the mean time, as the Roman forces decreased in Britain, the Picts and Scots con