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Home Gazetteer of Roads Margary's Numbering Itineraries & Sources Glossary/Biography RRRA Website
The Crossing from Gaul to Britain Iter I Iter II Iter III & Iter IV Iter V Iter VI Iter VII Iter VIII Iter IX Iter X Iter XI Iter XII Iter XIII Iter XIV Iter XV The Maritime Itinerary

The Antonine Itinerary - Iter 1

From Bremenio (High Rochester, Northumberland)

To Praetorio (Bridlington, East Riding of Yorkshire)

The Antonine Itinerary De situ Britanniae - an 18th Century Hoax The Peutinger Table The Ravenna Cosmography Ptolemy's Geography The Notitia Dignitatum

The Iter almost certainly follows RR67c from Segontium to Canovium, the route of which is now known with reasonable certainty (Hopewell, 2013, pp. 27-34) and is just a mile more than the stated distance, an error which can be explained by measurement from a town-zone. The fact that no less than six milestones are known from it is indicative of the importance of this road.

The next stage, to Varis, is more problematic. The route of RR67b is not so well established with Margary describing a rather indirect and unlikely route (Margary, 1973, pp 349-50). Waddelove’s proposed route makes more sense (Waddelove, 1983), and his identification of the course of the road in St. Asaph approximately 400m south of the cathedral seems sound (Waddelove, 2004), supporting the long held assumption of St. Asaph being the location of Varis. Whilst a definite Roman settlement or fort has never been conclusively established, the town’s distance from Conovium (18 Roman miles) certainly fits and the scattered finds of coins, pottery and tile are certainly suggestive of Roman settlement.  The discovery of ditches and road surfaces in the town have led to an interpretation of a probable fort (Waddelove 2004).

Assuming that Varis is St. Asaph, the route will have followed RR76a east and then along the coast. Rather than approach Chester along RR66a, the northern part of of which through Lache is far from certain, it is more likely that the Iter followed an extension of RR76a continuing further east to skirt around the south of the wetlands of the Dee estuary meeting RR6 near Eaton Hall. If so, the distance would be almost 33 Roman miles, agreeing well with the 32 miles of the Iter. Incidentally, the distance from St. Asaph to Chester is another example of inaccuracy in the measurements of true distances given in Rivet and Smith (Rivet & Smith 1979, p.172), as they state the true distance to Chester as being 34 miles.

Hopewell, D. (2013); Roman Roads in North-West Wales; Gwynedd Archaeological Trust, Bangor

Margary, I.D. (1973); Roman Roads in Britain (3rd Edition); Baker, London

Rivet, A.L.F. & Smith, Colin (1979); The Place-names of Roman Britain; B.T. Batsford Ltd., London

Rodwell, W., (1975); Milestones, Civic Territories and the Antonine Itinerary in Britannia, Volume 6, pp. 76-101

Waddelove, A.C. (1986);  The Development of a Roman Road Network in the Lower Dee Valley Region before AD 117, unpub M. Phil, thesis University of Manchester

Waddelove, E. (1983); The Roman road between Varis and Canovium, Archaeologia Cambrensis vol. 132, pp.95-106

Waddelove, E. (2004); A Roman Fort at St. Asaph and the Location of Varis in Britannia, Volume 35, pp. 248-252


Itinerary Text

Itinerary Distance

Modern name

Actual Roman Miles


Margary route number


Item a Segontio Devam, m.p. lxxiiii sic. (also, from Caernarvon to Chester, 74 miles)


m.p. xxiii




RR 67c


m.p. xviii

St Asaph?



RR 67b


m.p. xxxii




RR 67a

Itinerary total

m.p. lxxiiii

Entry written and compiled by Mike Haken, last updated: 18 October 2017