The Bard and Jester

Welcome Readers! Here you will find some real life experiences and musings that I'd like to share with you. So, come on in, if you have the time and I'll do my best to be entertaining... Please click on my sponsors' links!!! Established March 12, 2005.

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Location: New York, United States

I can be a clown, a poet, a fool, a romantic, a diplomat, a beast...it all depends upon the timing and circumstance.

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Boudicca: History's Real Warrior Queen


Boadicea by Petra Berger
Originally uploaded by vraven.




One of my heroes is Boudicca. Said to have been a big, strong woman and mighty warrior, she was the Queen of a Celtic/British tribe called the Iceni, but under Roman authority, around 61 CE...and one of the perfect examples of the old saying, "Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned..."

When the Emperor Nero's taxes became too much to bear, Boudicca resisted and so the Romans had her beaten with rods and her daughters raped.

If they had thought this would make her obediant, they were sadly mistaken.

Instead, Boudicca took her rage and united most of the tribes of south east Britian. She launched a massive rebellion, defeating Roman armies left and right and nearly drove all of Rome's influence from the isle.

Governor General Seutonius Paulinus, in charge of the Roman occupation at that time, gathered the last Roman soldiers on the isle--about 10,000--and rushed to face Queen Boudicca's massive army. He chose a narrow mountain pass to make his final stand.

With 100,000 Celtic warriors against 10,000 Roman soldiers--10 to 1 odds--victory seemed assured for Boudicca.

But such was not the case.

The narrow pass chosen by the cunning Seutonius helped minimize the Celts' advantage of overwhelming numbers.

The strong individuality and howling beserker rage of the Celtic warriors made it difficult for Boudicca's commands to be heard and followed. The amazing iron discipline of the Romans enabled the soldiers to be a living wall upon which the rebels broke, like waves against rock. Through shrewd tactics and methodically replacing the front ranks with fresh troops, the Romans wore down the wild Celtic warriors.

The Celts' own chariots, which they loved to ride toward the enemy and hurl javelins from before entering the fray, blocked the Celts' retreat and the Roman soldiers mowed them down to a man.
Sensing defeat, Queen Boudicca took her own life by drinking poison before she could be captured.

However, her defeat actually turned out to be a victory of sorts.

The Romans never again had the resources to expand further over Britain and across the sea to Ireland, thus preserving Goedelic Celtic Culture from further Roman taint. And shocked by Boudicca's near-successful rebellion, the Romans adopted policies that were a little kinder.

Boadicea: An Ode

William Cowper (1731-1800)

WHEN the British warrior queen,
Bleeding from the Roman rods,
Sought, with an indignant mien,
Counsel of her country's gods,

Sage beneath a spreading oak
Sat the Druid, hoary chief;
Every burning word he spoke
Full of rage, and full of grief.

'Princess! if our aged eyes
Weep upon thy matchless wrongs,
Tis because resentment ties
All the terrors of our tongues.


'Rome shall perish--write that word
In the blood that she has spilt;
Perish, hopeless and abhorred,
Deep in ruin as in guilt.

'Rome, for empire far renowned,
Tramples on a thousand states;
Soon her pride shall kiss the ground--
Hark! the Gaul is at her gates!

'Other Romans shall arise,
Heedless of a soldier's name;
Sounds, not arms, shall win the prize--
Harmony the path to fame.

'Then the progeny that springs
From the forests of our land,
Armed with thunder, clad with wings,
Shall a wider world command.

'Regions Caesar never knew
Thy posterity shall sway,
Where his eagles never flew,
None invincible as they.'

Such the bard's prophetic words,
Pregnant with celestial fire,
Bending, as he swept the chords
Of his sweet but awful lyre.

She, with all a monarch's pride,
Felt them in her bosom glow;
Rushed to battle, fought, and died;
Dying, hurled them at the foe.

'Ruffians, pitiless as proud,
Heaven awards the vengeance due:
Empire is on us bestowed,
Shame and ruin wait for you.'

1 Comments:

Anonymous Kathryn said...

Hello,
I'm in grade 12, in Australia, Grade 12 is my final year. Anyway, I'm doing a research assignment on Boadicea and I just wanted to thank you for your post.

It helped alot and confirmed some of my already existing research.

Tell me, why is she one of your heroes?

I've had a browse through your site and I'm very impressed. You're quiet funny. I enjoyed reading your posts.

I'll be your audience.

Thanks.

hit me back if u wanna chat: malibukitty_13@hotmail.com

Cheers,
Kathryn

P.S. I've always been fascinated by New York. Would love to migrate their sometime in the future.

May 29, 2005 7:44 AM  

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