Nightbringer | The Arthurian Online Encyclopedia


Latin: Eboracum
City of the Legion
Euerwyck, Everwic, Evrevic, Evroic, Evroïc, Evruïc, Ewrevic, Guevrevic

York is a historic city in Yorkshire, England. Its located inland on the Ouse River, which flows into the Humber.

Geoffrey of Monmouth tells us it was the site of the first battle between Ambrosius Aurelius and the Saxons, led by Octa and Eosa, Ambrosius was victorious, and he later appointed Samson the archbishop of the city. York was the site of Uther Pendragon’s defeat by Octa and Eosa.

When Arthur ascended the throne, he fought Colgrim’s army at York, but he had to abandon the siege when Saxon reinforcements, led by Cheldric, arrived from Germany. When Arthur eventually reclaimed the city, he appointed Pryamus the new archbishop.

Malory tells us that Arthur held a parliament here, sufficient grounds for assuming he also held court at York, the traditional great city of the north.

York | 0 to the 9th century AD

Roman Eboracum | 71 AD – 5th century
Eboracum was founded by the Romans in 71 AD as a military fortress under the reign of Emperor Vespasian. It served as the capital of the Roman province of Britannia Inferior. The city was strategically located along the River Ouse and the road known as Ermine Street, making it an important administrative and military center. Roman Eboracum featured a fortress, baths, temples, and other public buildings.

City of the Legion
The term “City of the Legion” is a historical epithet associated with the city of York, or Eboracum. It was a significant Roman settlement and served as the headquarters of the Legio IX Hispana (Roman Ninth Legion) during certain periods. The presence of the Ninth Legion in York highlighted the city’s military importance as a strategic base for Roman forces in the northern part of Britain. The Roman military established fortifications and structures to support their activities.

York gained additional prominence during the early fourth century when the Roman Emperor Constantine the Great was proclaimed emperor there in 306 AD, after his father Constantius Chlorus died in Eboracum. Constantine played a crucial role in Roman history and later became the first Roman emperor to convert to Christianity.

Over the years, archaeological excavations of York have revealed extensive Roman remains, including city walls, a Roman fortress (Castra), and the multangular tower. These discoveries contributes to our understanding of York’s significance during the Roman occupation.

Anglo-Saxon and Viking Periods | 5th – 9th centuries
After the decline of the Roman Empire in the fifth century, York, like much of Roman Britain, underwent a period of instability. The Anglo-Saxons began to settle in the region, and the city was known as Eoforwic. It became the capital of the Kingdom of Northumbria during the seventh and eighth centuries.

York’s history during this time was marked by the influence of Christian missionaries, including Saint Paulius and Saint Wilfrid.

In the late eighth century, York was captured by the Vikings, and it became known as Jorvik. The Viking settlement was a significant trading and cultural center within the Danelaw, a region under Viking law. York’s Viking history is well-documented, and many artifacts from this period have been excavated.

The city was eventually recaptured by the Anglo-Saxons, and it went through periods of conflict and changing rule.

See also
Lucius Artorius Castus | The Legend of King Arthur
Pontefract | The Legend of King Arthur

Historia Regum Britanniae | Geoffrey of Monmouth, c. 1138