Battle of Deorham

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The Battle of Deorham the year 577 was a decisive conflict between the Briton kingdoms of Britain and the Anglo-Saxons, who decided the battle for themselves.


The Gewissæ were a Saxon ethnic group, which settled on the upper Thames in England towards the end of the 5th century. Since the mid-6th century, the Gewissæ expanded westward: Cynric fought together with Ceawlin in 556 at Beranburh ( Barbury Castle) against the Britons. After Cynrics death his son Ceawlin followed in the year 560 to the throne. 571 Cuthwulfs a victory over the Britons at Bedcanford ( Bedford in the Chiltern Hills ) and the conquest of the cities Limbury ( Bedfordshire ), Aylesbury ( Buckinghamshire ), Bensington ( Oxfordshire ) and Eynsham ( Oxfordshire ) is mentioned.

The battle and its aftermath

The place of battle of Deorham the city of Bath in Wiltshire applies today Dyrham, north. To the 577 Gewissæ took under Ceawlin and his son Cuthwine a foray to the northwest. They probably occupied first coup- like the old Iron Age mounting on the 200 m high Hinton Hill about 1 km north of Dyrham. In the ensuing battle, the three kings Coinmail Briton fell ( Cynvael ) Condidan ( Cynddylan ) and Farin Mail ( Ffernvael ). The archaic forms of the name of Briton kings leave on a very old, possibly close contemporary written tradition. The Gewissæ could conquer the southern part of Gloucestershire with the places Gloucester, Cirencester and Bath. With the conquest of this strategically important places, the Saxon settlement of the area was secured. Ceawlin succeeded thus to reach the Severn and separate the Briton kingdoms of Wales and Cornwall each other. In the 7th century the conquered territory came under the overlordship of Mercia.