Celtic Queen: The World of Cartimandua

Author(s): Jill Armitage


The British queens Cartimandua and Boudicea were two Celtic noblewomen, recorded by classical writers as part of a tradition of women who showed particular courage, ambition and political skill, and who were just as formidable in war as their husbands. They took on the status of Celtic Goddesses and were central players in the struggle against the Roman annexation of Britain. Boudicea led the rebellion against the Romans but her reputation may be largely symbolic: to Britons and Romans alike, she came to represent matronly honour and heroic resistance, fighting on behalf of her defiled daughters. But using historical and archaeological evidence, this book uncovers the much weightier story of the Celtic Queen Cartimandua, the independent ruler of the powerful Brigante tribe whose territory was the single largest Celtic kingdom in Britain. Cartimandua's leadership in battle and political influence were probably much greater than Boudiceas, yet her life has since been written out of history. Unlike Boudica, wife of King Prasutagus of the Iceni tribe, Cartimandua was the regent of the Brigante tribe in her own right. Her tribe prospered in the new Imperial world and she held her position as queen until AD69. But she was seen as a shameless adulteress after an open affair with her husband's arms-bearer. Such sexual liberation was normal for powerful Celtic women but it scandalised Roman society. With many references to popular Celtic culture, their gods, beliefs, art and symbolism, as well as living conditions and the hillforts that would have been Cartimandua's headquarters, this book offers an insight into the life of this fascinating woman and the Celtic/Romano world in which she lived.


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Product Information

General Fields

  • : 9781445684154
  • : Amberley Publishing
  • : Amberley Publishing
  • : January 2020
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Jill Armitage
  • : HB