Sextus Julius Frontinus

Back to Petilius Cerialis Forth to Julius Agricola

Governor of Britannia from 73/4AD to 77/8

"I also lay aside all ideas of any new works or engines of war, the invention of which long-ago reached its limit, and in which I see no hope for further improvement ..."
Above extract from Strategemata by Sextus Julius Frontinus (intro. book III; c.84AD)

This dynamic governor considered northern Britain safe enough following the campaigns of his predecessor Cerialis to concentrate on subduing the Silures tribe in South Wales, moving Legio II Augusta from Gloucester to a new Legionary fortress in Silurian territory at Caerleon. Other forts were established into Ordovician territory in mid-Wales following the massacre of a cavalry unit in the area.

"Cerialis, indeed, would have eclipsed the vigilance or the credit of any other successor; but Julius Frontinus was, so far as a subject of the emperor could be, a great man, and he shouldered and sustained the burden cast on him: his arms reduced the Silures, a powerful and warlike race; he surmounted not only the valour of the enemy but also the physical difficulties of their land."
Above extract from De Vitae Agricolae by Cornelius Tacitus (XVII.ii)

The Life and Magistracies of Frontinus

Click here for a breakdown of the military campaigns of Sextus Julius Frontinus in Britain


See: Strategems & The Aqueducts of Rome by Julius Frontinus, translated by Charles E. Bennett (Loeb, Harvard, 1925);
De Vitae Agricolae by Cornelius Tacitus, translated by M. Hutton (Loeb, Harvard, 1970 revised ed.);
Chronology of the Ancient World by E.J. Bickerman (Thames & Hudson, London, 1980);
Chronicle of the Roman Emperors by Chris Scarre (Thames & Hudson, London, 1995);

Frontinus Links

Sextus Julius Frontinus the entry from the 1911 Online Encyclopaedia Britannica