Epocessa and Ypocessa
Attested: Epocessa and Ypocessa at positions 59 and 60 in the Ravennna Cosmography
Where: Somewhere in the headwaters of the river Severn close to the line of the later Offa's Dyke: possibly at Forden Gaer (at SO20799890), which was a Roman civil settlement with military origins, or among the fort and complex of marching camps around Pentreheyling/Brompton. The Cosmography lists these names after Branogenium (Caersws) and before Macatonion (probably in the Welsh borders, on the way to Gloucester).
Name origin: Latinized forms of εποικισις ‘settlement of a colony’. Εποικεω meant ‘occupy as the seat of offensive operations against’, which would fit the situation here if the Roman administration encouraged retired soldiers and friendly Britons to settle in a border area with a history of rebellion.
Name origin: These two names might be an accidental duplication in the Cosmography, but they could also be two distinct settlements, with lightly differentiated names. The concept of regime-friendly farmers holding territory is familiar from later history, for example in the 1108 settlement of Flemings in Pembrokeshire. Celticists think of horses whenever they see epo, so Richmond & Crawford suggested a meaning like ‘horse-stalls’: not credible.
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Last edited 26 February 2023 To main Menu.