The Antonine Wall


Antonine wall at Barr Hill near Twechar. Tony Rotondas CC BY-SA 3.0 Antonine wall at Barr Hill near Twechar. Tony Rotondas, CC BY-SA 3.0

The Vallum Antonini or Antonine Wall runs for 39 miles west to east from Old Kilpatrick on the Firth of Clyde to Bo’ness on the Firth of Forth. Built between 142 to 154 AD the wall briefly represented the northernmost extent of the Limes Romanus, separating the province of Britannia from Caledonia until its abandonment and the withdrawal of Roman forces to Hadrian’s Wall . Its construction was ordered by Emperor Antoninus Pius (138-161 AD) to coincide with a new northward advance led by the Roman Governor Quintus Lollius Urbicus into the area that now forms lowland Scotland. The exact reason for building the wall is not clear but it is probable that it was in response to unrest and revolt by the Brigantes, the dominant Celtic tribe in what today is northern England, and an outburst of fort building…

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