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Roman Britain's Pirate King (Kindle)

Carausius, Constantius Chlorus and the Fourth Roman Invasion of Britain

British History Ancient History Rome Military

By Dr Simon Elliott
Imprint: Pen & Sword Military
File Size: 18.7 MB (.mobi)
Pages: 192
Illustrations: 20 colour
ISBN: 9781399094382
eBook Released: 30th June 2022


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In the mid-3rd century AD Roman Britain’s regional fleet, the Classis Britannica, disappeared. It was never to return. Soon the North Sea and English Channel were over-run by Germanic pirates preying upon the east and south coast of Britain, and the continental coast up to the Rhine Delta. The western augustus (senior emperor) Maximian turned to a seasoned naval leader called Marcus Aurelius Mausaeus Valerius Carausius to restore order. He was so successful that Maximian accused him of pocketing the plunder he’d recaptured, ordering his execution. The canny Carausius moved first and in 286 usurped imperial authority, creating a North Sea empire in northern Gaul and Britain which lasted until 296. Dubbed the pirate king, he initially thrived, seeing off early attempts by Maximian to defeat him. However, in the early 290s Maximian appointed his new caesar (junior emperor), Constantius Chlorus (the father of Constantine the Great), to defeat Carausius. A seasoned commander, Constantius Chlorus soon brought northern Gaul back into the imperial fold, leaving Carausius controlling only Britain. Carausius was then assassinated and replaced by Allectus, his treasurer. Allectus was in turn defeated by Constantius Chlorus in AD 296 in the fourth Roman invasion of Britain, the caesar arriving just in time to prevent London being sacked by Allectus’ Frankish mercenaries. Once more Britain was part of the Roman Empire.

As featured in

Available at: https://www.kentonline.co.uk/kent/news/the-forgotten-man-who-shaped-british-history-270480/

Kent Online

I found out a lot of information about the last century of Roman Britain that I didn’t not know.

NetGalley, Juliane Silver

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

I have been a student of Roman History for a long time. This well written and extremely interesting story of the Northern reaches of Rome and its intrigues is new reading for me. The amount of history known about the people who lead the empire in the late 200s onward is very surprising to me. The thousands of lives involved in this story and the battles and unheard of struggles discussed make this book important reading because of the fact its not well known and its real history that can be corroborated with many remaining records and histories that have survived, Roman Britain is a fascinating subject and this book adds a new level to those who learn from the past.

NetGalley, Patrick Carmen

About Dr Simon Elliott

Dr Simon Elliott is an award-winning and best-selling historian, archaeologist, author, broadcaster, Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Kent, Trustee of the Council for British Archaeology, Ambassador for Museum of London Archaeology, Guide Lecturer for Andante Travels and President of the Society of Ancients. He has written many award winning and best-selling books on Classical world themes and frequently appears across broadcast media as an expert on conflict in the ancient world.

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