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Arviragus Gweyrydd Gwairydd (Britain) Cunobelin (abt. 0020 - abt. 0090)

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King Arviragus Gweyrydd Gwairydd (Arviragus Gweinivyth) "ap Cymbeline" Cunobelin formerly Britain
Born about in Colchester, Englandmap
Husband of — married [date unknown] [location unknown]
Died about in Siluria, Somerset, Englandmap
Britain-81 created 29 Apr 2014 | Last modified
This page has been accessed 4,868 times.

Categories: Estimated Birth Date.

This is a profile from the First Era — Dates are speculative

The Birth Date is a rough estimate. See the text for details.




In Brut Tysylio, The Chronicle of the Kings of Britain Translated from the Welsh and Illustrated with Notes[1] it is stated Gweyrydd is the name of the father of Marius and Avriragus is another way of spelling y-Veurig yr-Veurig.

In the Complete Works of Tacitus: 12.33, Arvigarus Gweyrydd is compared to Caratacus.[2]

English translation by Robert Ellis Jones from the Welsh manuscript cited as Oxford, Jesus College, MS LXI (15th century). The Welsh translation is printed in Griscom's edition of the Latin. The Welsh manuscript, as is plain to see, gives an abridged translation of Geoffrey's Latin. This passage is found on fol. 80r.

[folio 80 recto] When Gloywkassar (= Claudius Caesar) saw this, he sent to the Bryttaniait to ask for peace, and forthwith peace was made between them; and to confirm the peace, Gloyw kassar gave his daughter to Gwairydd (= Arviragus) to wife. And after this, with the power of the Bryttaniaid, the men of Ryfain (= Rome) subdued the Ork islands, and the other islands about them. And when winter slipped away, the maid, matchless in her form and fairness, came from Ryfain, and Gwairydd married her. And then Gloyw kassar built a city which he called kaer-loyw (= Gloucester) on the bank of Hafren (= Severn), on the boundary betwen kymrv (= Wales) and lloegr (= Loegria). [3]

Parents and Siblings

Cambelinus dies after a reign of two years. Leaves two sons, Guiderius and Arviragus. Guiderius succeeds his father in the government of the kingdom. He refuses to pay the tribute to the Roman government.[4]
Arviragus: died AD 90; this first century king of the Lloegrian (eastern) line, the second son of Cymbeline, is often confused with Caractacus of the Silures, son of Bran, of the Cambrian (western) line; note that there is an error in R W Morgan's genealogy above (see Royal family tree); Arviragus does not appear to have been Caractacus’s cousin; Arviragus has also been confused with the king of the Iceni, Prasutagus, Boadicea’s husband, who is mentioned by Tacitus, but whereas Prasutagus died in AD 60 Arviragus expired thirty years later; to be clear, Arviragus, Caractacus & Prasutagus were separate individuals, as recognised by Holinshed & Enderbie [see Sources]; Arviragus’s older brother King Guiderius was killed early on in the fighting during the Roman invasion of AD 43 of the Emperor Claudius; Aviragus assumed the kingship and fought on in his brother’s stead, but neither he nor Claudius wanted to fight to a bloody conclusion; as part of a peace deal, Arviragus was to marry a daughter of Emperor Claudius’s, whose name was Genvissa according to Geoffrey of Monmouth, Tysilio leaving her unnamed.


Became King in 44 A.D. [5]

‘...Claudius and Arviragus went to Winchester, where they sojourned together, and the emperor immediately sent ambassadors to Rome for his daughter Genois. In the meantime, while the ambassadors were performing their journey, Claudius, with the assistance of Arviragus conquered the isles of Orkney, and some others; after which the ambassadors returned from Rome, bringing the daughter of Claudius.’ [6]

Taking command of the British forces on the death of his brother Guiderius, Arvirgus emerged victor from a major skirmish with Claudius' troops. He eventually ruled the British as Rome's puppet-king, being interred in the city of Gloucester. British warriors at that time were famed for their ability to fight whilst standing on the pole of the chariot, and Arviragus was particularly adept at this as a certain Roman author testified: "Either you will catch a certain king, or else Arviragus will tumble from the British chariot-pole." Cassivelaunus. It was this king who withstood, in the year 55 BC, the invading armies of Julius Caesar. Arviragus was starved into submission after betrayal by Androgeus, his brother Lud's eldest son. The British resistance, however, had been great and fierce, evoking from the Roman author Lucan much praise concerning one particular engagement : Territa quaesitis ostendit terga Britannis, when Caesar fled in terror from the very Britons whom he'd come to attack!".The leader of the resistance to Caesar in both of his British campaigns. Cassivellaunus possibly formed the tribe later to become known as the Catuvellauni from a federation of smaller like-minded Belgic tribes living north of the Thames, specifically to counter Caesar.


‘...Aviragus marrying the daughter of the Emperour, joining the Brittish and Roman Regal and Imperial lines together, thereby ended all debates between them.’ [Source: Enderbie, p143] Genvissa was possibly an adopted daughter rather than a natural one, as Claudius’s three natural daughters are said to be accounted for in Roman history; if so, she must have been of the highest lineage not to affront the dignity of the British king; further information would be welcome on this Roman lady of the Emperors kindred [Source: Enderbie, p142], as Genvissa and Arviragus founded a Brito-Roman dynasty, which ruled on after them in the persons of their son Marius, Coel I & Lucius; the Romans accepted Arviragus's kingship of Roman-controlled Britain at this time – probably the area to the south and east of the Fosse Way, ‘fosse’ being the Roman word for a defensive ditch; later on Arviragus went into rebellion and the Roman general Vespasian was sent to bring Britain back into the imperial fold; peace was brokered by Genvissa, again indicating her status; in this period, AD 70s, Cogidubnus may have come out of Roman retirement briefly to become client king in the south of the country, probably based at the Roman-style villa at Fishbourne near Chicester; he may well also have been such in the AD 40s, after the death of the usurper Verica, who seems to have been his kinsmen [see above, Guiderius]; Arviragus became compliant once more and presumably Cogidubnus departed the scene or retired, this time for good; note that Verica and Cogidubnus, the latter mentioned by Tacitus, are unrecorded in the British Chronicles; Arviragus seems to have been a worthy adversary as the Roman poet Juvenal enquired:

‘Hath our great enemy,
Arviragus, the car-borne British king,
Dropped from his battle-throne?’[7]

This poetic fragment, the text and translation of which are taken from Juvenal and Persius, trans. G. G. Ramsay (Cambridge, MA: 1929), is also cited by Geoffrey after his giving credit to Genuissa for establishing peace between Arviragus and Vespasian. Juvenal, as is well known to Classical scholars, was somewhat adverse to things not historically Roman.[8]

Arviragus is said by the interpolators of William of Malmesbury's De Antiquitate Glastoniensis Ecclesiae to be the king who granted 12 hides of land around Glastonbury to Joseph of Arimathea and his band of followers, when they brought Christianity to Britain for the first time in 63 AD. Some scholars think that it may have been Arviragus and his people who occupied the ancient hillfort, located in the county of Somerset, known as Cadbury Castle (which would later come to be associated with King Arthur), and used it as a base for their resistance against the Romans.[9]

The next identifiable ruler of the Catuvellauni was Tasciovanus who came to power, though whether he was the son or grandson of Cassivellaunus is not known. [It is possible that Cassivellaunus should be translated as 'Vellaunus of the Cassi', i.e. his tribe was the Cassi and his name was Vellaunus. It follows that the name given to the amalgamated tribe gathered under his command could mean 'the Followers or Smiters of Vellaunus'. Latin caterva crowd, troop, company, flock. Gaelic cath to smite.][10]


  1. Brut Tysylio, The Chronicle of the Kings of Britain Translated from the Welsh and Illustrated with Notes; to which are Added Original Dissertations Etc. by Peter Roberts, p. 89 -. London, E. Williams 1811. (angl.) (Google eBook),
  2. Complete Works of Tacitus. Tacitus. Alfred John Church. William Jackson Brodribb. Sara Bryant. edited for Perseus. New York. : Random House, Inc. Random House, Inc. reprinted 1942.
  3. Dr. J. C. Marler
    June 17, 1999, added 2014-07-23, amb
  4. John de Wavrin, 1864, A Collection of the Chronicles and ancient Histories of Great Britain, now called England, translated by Will. Hardy: From Albina to A, Part 688 (Google eBook)
  5. The Librarian; Being an Account of Scarce, Valuable, and Useful ..., p. 55.Volumes 1-4. edited by James Savage
  6. John de Wavrin, p132.
  7. Monarchs, AD, The National CV of Britain
  8. Genuissa, Arviragus, and Claudius. J. C. Marler, Associate Professor, Department of Philosophy and the Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies, and Assistant Vatican Film Librarian, Saint Louis University
  9. Juvenal, the 2nd century (AD) Roman satirist (Satire 4.124-128),author Deloria Hurst
  10. Author: Bill Cooper Title: After the Flood, Appendix 13 Britain's First Christian King, The Table of Nations

Created through the import of Campbell-Charsha Family Tree.ged on 28 February 2011.

This person was created through the import of Morton Family Tree.ged on 16 November 2010.

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Images: 2
Huntingdon and Monmouth's Mythical Pedigree
Huntingdon and Monmouth's Mythical Pedigree

''Monarchs'' from The Holinshed Project
''Monarchs'' from The Holinshed Project


On 26 Apr 2014 at 01:18 GMT Michelle (Bairfield) Brooks wrote:

Britons-3 and Britain-35 appear to represent the same person because: see bio of Britain-35, Arviragus: died AD 90; this first century king of the Lloegrian (eastern) line, the second son of Cymbeline, is often confused with Caractacus of the Silures, son of Bran, of the Cambrian (western) line

Arviragus Gweinivyth is 45 degrees from Kevin Bacon, 41 degrees from Abraham Lincoln, 49 degrees from Ayn Rand, 46 degrees from Peter Roberts and 42 degrees from Queen Elizabeth II of the Commonwealth Realms on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.

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