Coordinates: 51°52′01″N 2°14′56″W / 51.867°N 2.249°W / 51.867; -2.249

Glevum (or, more formally, Colonia Nervia Glevensium, or occasionally Glouvia) was a Roman fort in Roman Britain that became a "colonia" of retired legionaries in AD 97. Today, it is known as Gloucester, located in the English county of Gloucestershire. The name Glevum is taken by many present day businesses in the area and also by the 26-mile Glevum Way, a long-distance footpath or recreational walk encircling modern Gloucester.

Glevum was established around AD 48 at an important crossing of the River Severn and near to the Fosse Way, the early front line after the Roman invasion of Britain and which became one of the most important Roman roads in Britain. Initially, a Roman fort was established at Kingsholm. Twenty years later, a larger replacement fortress was built on slightly higher ground nearby, centred on Gloucester Cross, and a civilian settlement grew around it. The Roman Legion based here was the Legio II Augusta as they prepared to invade Roman Wales between 66 and 74 AD, later being based at Burrium (Usk) and then Isca Augusta (Caerleon) in South Wales.

In AD 97, the whole area was designated a colonia by the Emperor Nerva. A colonia was the residence of retired legionaries and enjoyed the highest status in the Empire. The legionaries were given farmland in the surrounding district and could be called upon as a Roman auxiliary armed force.

A large and impressive administrative basilica and forum market-place was built in the town and there were many fine homes with mosaic floors.

Roman Britain was divided into four provinces in the early 4th century. It is most likely that Glevum, as a colony, became the provincial capital of Britannia Secunda, in the same way that colonies at York and Lincoln became capitals of their respective provinces. There is some evidence that at this time Glevum possessed a mint.

This page was last edited on 2 May 2018, at 14:43 (UTC).
Reference: under CC BY-SA license.

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