Collingridge's comprehensive history doesn't just look at the Iron Age queen who conquered three cities in Roman-occupied Britain but begins with the Roman incursion into Britain under Julius Caesar. It wasn't until almost 90 years after Caesar, under the emperor Claudius, that the Romans really got a foothold in Britain, and the invaders did not find it an easy province to manage. While some tribes accepted the path of least resistance and submitted to Roman rule, others did not. Boudica's husband, King Prasutagus, was a pro-Roman "client king," but after his death Roman soldiers beat Boudica and raped her two daughters. The proud queen went on a rampage, gathering warriors from various tribes and sacking three cities (including London) before her army was defeated. Drawing on two Roman historians, Tacitus and Cassius Dio, Collingridge shows an early lionization of Boudica at the final battle, and later chapters go on to illustrate just how Boudica became legend, even influencing another famous British queen, Elizabeth I. An absorbing historical study of how an upstart queen became a legend. Kristine HuntleyCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
From the Publisher
Boudica has been mythologized as the woman who dared to take on the Romans to avenge her daughters, her tribe, and her enslaved country. Her immortality rests on the fact that she almost drove the Romans out of Britain, and her legend has become the reference point for any British woman in power, from Elizabeth I to Margaret Thatcher. As Boudica has become well known as an icon of female leadership and strength, the true story of her revolt against the Roman empire has only become more distant- until now. Combining new research and recent archaeological discoveries, Vanessa Collingridge has written a major new biography on this shadowy and often misunderstood figure of ancient history. Boudica provides a detailed history of the "Celtomania" that has adopted Boudica as its earliest hero, and the nationalist and feminist causes that have also tried to claim her as their own. While tracking the origins and impact of the various versions of the Boudica legend, Vanessa Collingridge unearth a historical woman who is far subtler- but every bit as fascinating- as the myths associated to her name.