Vindocladia

Attested:  AI iter 15 Vindocladia (also Vindogladia as part of an accidental insertion in iter 12);  RC Bindogladia

Where:  Poole, Dorset, at or near the modern Poole Lifting Bridge, across the narrow tidal channel that separates Poole quay on the east, from Hamworthy on the west, long thought to be where Vespasian's troops landed to begin the conquest of south-west Britain.

Name originVindo is probably best translated as ‘fair, pleasant’, though its Welsh descendant gwynn has developed a primary meaning of ‘white’ and its English descendants (such as winsome) have tended more towards a sense of ‘lovely’.  The -cladia part descends from PIE *kel-/*kla- ‘to cut’, whose many descendants include Irish clad and Welsh clawdd ‘ditch’, plus Greek κλαω ‘to break’ and Latin clades ‘destruction’.  Initial G as seen in two spellings of this name might be due to Latin gladius ‘sword’ or gelād ‘difficult river crossing’, a later place-name element discussed at length by Gelling and Cole (2003) as possibly associated with ferries.

Notes:  R&S suggested Badbury Rings, following Jackson in imagining that white chalk was exposed in its ditches (unlikely).  A better guess near there would be Shapwick, where there was a Roman fort at ST948023 and where a Roman road crossed the river Stour at ST93640164.  However, all those locations cannot be reconciled with AI's mileages before and after this name.  Poole wins because it lies so perfectly on the straight line of iter 15 that stretches beyond Winchester and Alton, probably with ultimate targets of London and Colchester.

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Last edited: 12 June 2019
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