chapter  XXI
52 Pages

Rapax) to an area where

Frontinus was succeeded by Cn. Julius Agricola (77-84), who had already seen extensive service in Britain. Thanks to the biography of him by his son-in-law, the historian Tacitus, he is the most famous of the governors of Britain. He was an able administrator, a skilful soldier and an excellent engineer. Whether his conception of the strategic potentialities of the Empire was sound is another matter. He proposed to bring the whole island, from John o' Groats to Land's End, under Roman dominion, and in five campaigns, the exact details of which cannot be discovered owing to Tacitus' geographical and chronological uncertainties, he did achieve some striking military successes. After completing Frontinus' subjugation of Wales he moved north. As he progressed, his practice was to secure the ground won by a chain of forts. He established such a chain between the Tyne and Solway, and linked them with a road, the so-called Stanegate, which like Ostorius' Fosse Way a generation earlier, served to mark the frontier.s

• Previously it may have been at Gloucester (Gievum). • The Staneiatc may be prc-Agricolan.