Before the Romans, England was a nation of various tribes with no sense of national identity. The Roman’s ruled Britain for 400 years from AD 43 and bought a sense of unity and order. After the Romans left, the population saw themselves as English. The Scots and Irish were never conquered by Rome and this gave them a sense of being very different from the English that is still evident today.
The Romans built many roads, known as Roman ways. Many modern roads still follow the routes of these Roman ways.
Although the English language is based on Anglo-Saxon, many words can be traced to the Latin spoken by the Romans. Common words with Latin roots include ‘diploma’, ‘forum’ and ‘stadium’.
The Romans introduced the British to a system of numbers too. Roman numerals are still used on some clocks, such as the Eastgate Clock in Chester, and you may also see written in Roman numerals.
Before the Romans, few Britons could read or write, so information was passed on through speaking. The Romans wrote down accounts of important events in Latin, and in the Roman towns the British residents began to write.
The Romans built towns and cities. Towns whose names include the letters ‘ester’, ‘cester’ or ‘Chester’ were probably founded by the Romans. These include Gloucester, Doncaster, Manchester and, of course, Chester!
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