Queen Boudica and The Romans

Queen Boudica and The Romans

Queen Boudica’s uprising against the Romans proved to be a big challenge. The legendary Boudica was queen of the Iceni tribes in Eastern England, and in AD 60 led a huge rebellion against the Roman army forces.

Boudica was married to Prasutagus who was the ruler of the Iceni tribes. In 43 AD the Romans conquered southern England but allowed Prasutagus to continue ruling. On his death he divided his territory between his two daughters and the Romans, in a bid to appease all side. Although upon their arrival in the kingdom the Romans did not aim to keep the peace as had been the case during Prasutagus’ life - they looted buildings and forced people into slavery.

What’s more, according to Boudica, the Romans even attacked and raped her daughters, to which she responded by starting an uprising.

Boudica statue
Boudica statue

Other tribes teamed up with Boudica and the Iceni to fight against the Romans - in total they amassed an army of around 30,000 men. However, despite the size of the army, the men were unorganised. Nevertheless, they were aided by the fact that the Romans at the time were largely focused on attacking the Druids in Anglesey, so did not have their usual large army numbers in East Anglia. This resulted in the Iceni being given a clear path to Colchester, which was one of the main Roman cities in Britain. They massacred the whole city - including the men as well as the women and children. The Iceni and other tribes also killed soldiers from the Roman ninth legion just outside of Colchester, who had tried to prevent the rebels. Around 2,000 Roman soldiers were thought to be killed.

After Colchester the rebels progressed to London or Londinium as it was known then, where 70,000 also got killed.

Boudica was eventually defeated by a Roman army led by Paulinus. Many Britons were killed and Boudica is said to have taken poison rather than allow herself to be captured.

See also: Ancient Rome and Religion

MLA Citation/Reference

"Queen Boudica and The Romans". HistoryLearning.com. 2015. Web.