The Catalans of Gaul expanded to the British Isles: the Catuvellauni

Catuvellauni coin 

The ancient Catalans or Catalauni were one of the founding peoples of Gaul. However, in this article we will find that they were also from the British Isles. The supposed British tribe of the Catuvellauni or Catuvellans, is actually a branch of the people of the Catalauni or Catalans of Gaul that split due to the arrival of the people of the Belgians in their territory, in the area of the current Champagne (former Catalan or Catalaunian Plains).

As we have discussed in a previous article, we know from the studies of French historians Fabien Régnier and Jean-Pierre Drouin, published in his book ‘Les peuplesfondateurs à l'origine de la Gaule’ (2012), that the arrival in Gaul of the Belgian people, coming from the Danube area, altered the balance of the area of the river Mare (in Latin, river Matrona, present Marne) and forced the mobility of the old Catalans and other towns.

Map with the expansion of the Catalauni, north and south, according to historians Fabien Régnier and Jean-Pierre Drouin. 

In Régnier and Drouin's opinion, the Catalans of Gaul, therefore, would have expanded to other territories to establish new colonies, including to the north. And it is in this context that, according to these experts, they would have arrived in the peninsular lands and would have founded the present Catalonia. But it was also in this movement that the branch that explored the north reached Britain and settled there, giving rise to the Catuvellauni people. In this article we will focus on this second migration so unknown and so interesting.

Map with the Catuvellauni and the other founding nations of the British Isles.

Are the Catovellauni the Catalauni or Catalans of Gaul? 

According to Fabien Régnier and Jean-Pierre Drouin, these colonial incursions of the Catalans of Gaul would have established a Catalauni or Catuvellauni state or kingdom in the British Isles. And we find this migratory theory also recognized in the work Gallia Belgica (bottom image), by the British historian and archaeologist Edith Mary Wightman, published by the University of California Press, in 1985.

Excerpt from Edith Mary Wightman’s book. 

 Also in the book ‘England Invaded’, by Edward Foord and Gordon Home, published in 2014 (pictured below), we are told that the 'big' and 'warlike' village of the Catuvellauni, southeastern Midlands English, clearly maintained points of connection with the Catalauni of the Marne.

Excerpt from the book by Edward Foord and Gordon Home. 

 Along the same line, Charles Oman, in his book ‘England Before the Norman Conquest’ (1924) (pictured below) tells us that the Catuvellauni were the Catalauni of Châlons, in reference to Châlons-en-Champagne or Cathaló. In other words, the equivalence of Catalans and Catuvellauni by scholars is once again being ascertained.

Excerpt from the book by Henry Lawes Long. 

The Catalans, a nation with many names. 

Also the British historian Henry Lawes Long, in a chapter of his book (pictured above) ‘A Survey of the Early Geography of Western Europe, as Connected with the First Inhabitants of Britain: Their Origin, Language, Religious Rites, and Buildings’, published in 1859, it touches on the Catalauni and warns us that in documentary sources this town receives many names:

"Our Cateuclani, Cassivelauni, Cattivelauni [Catuvellauni], etc., are written in so many different ways that we are sure that this variety of denominations would assimilate them with the continental Catalauni." 

 According to the considerations of this author, Catalan scholars can investigate all these peoples with the certainty that we are following in the footsteps of our ancestors. The Cambrian Journal published, in 1862, ‘Mosaic Ethnoloy of Europe’, by the British historian JR Smith, which also warns us about the denominations Catti or Caddi, which are clearly related with the Catalauni of Gaul, Britannia and Hispania, in the same way that, in his opinion, the terms Cadurci or Cadwalli do.

Excerpt from J.R. Smith’s book. 

They are all testimonies of international experts who provide us with data on the various denominations that the Catalan people have received over the years, in the various territories where it has been established and through the various documentary testimonies.

Finally, in the book ‘Pedigree of the English People: An Argument on the Formation & Growth of the Nation’, published in 1873 by the Welsh historian Thomas Nicholas (pictured below), we find that it also covers the relationship between Catalans in Gaul and the Catuvellauni, which he finds them called as Cateuchlani, thus adding another appellation to this ancestral nation.

Nicholas tells us that a large number of peoples from Gaul moved to the islands and that, among these, "there were the Catalauni or Cateuchlani, who eventually settled north of the River Thames", in England. In the same index of Nicholas's book is literally quoted "the Catalaunians of Gaul and Britain."
Excerpt from the book by Thomas Nicholas. 

In short, it is quite clear, according to the opinions of some international experts, that the Catalauni and the Catuvellauni were the same people. In the same way, scholars we have analysed in other articles also recognise that the Catalauni from Gaul and the Catalans from the Iberian Peninsula were the same people as well. In the next articles we will study in more depth what it is known about this people ancestor of the Catalans and one of the founder tribes of the British Isles. All this promise to be very interesting.


More articles:

· A queen of the House of Barcelona behind the creation of the first Cambridge college?


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