Britannia, by William Camden



Small T THAT Tract, which according to Geographers is as it were the first of all Britain, reaching out a long way to the West, and contracted by little and little; is bounded on the North by the Severn-Sea, on the South by the British Ocean, and on the West by S. George’s Channel. It was formerly inhabited by those Britains, who are called in Solinus Dunmonii, in Ptolemy Damnonii, or, as they are more correctly term’d in other Copies, Danmonii. Which name, if it be not deriv’d from the inexhaustible mines of Tinn, found in those parts and call’d by the Britains Moina, ⌈and so implies as much as a hill of mines, for which it hath been always more famous, than for any other thing; if, I say, it be not derived from thence, it⌉ probably comes from dwelling under the mountains. For throughout the whole County, they live low and in valleys, a way of dwelling that the Britains call Danmunith; in which sense, the very next County is term’d by them Duffneint, i.e. low valleys, at this day. Ostidamnii. But whether the Ostidamnii, called also Ostæi Ostaei Pithaeasand Ostiones, and mention’d by Strabo out of Pithæas of Marseills, be the same with our Danmonii, I would desire the Antiquaries to consider a little more accurately. For (as they tell us) they were seated in the remotest parts of Europe, upon the Western Ocean, over-against Spain, not far from the Island Ushant, or Uxantissa. Which circumstances do exactly agree in every particular, to this Country of the Danmonii. And further, since by Artemidorus those Ostiones are called Cossini (as Stephanus in his Book of Cities has hinted,) I would entreat them also to consider, whether instead of CossiniCossini. we ought not to read Corini; for this Country is also call’d Corini. After the same manner, † † Quintil. Inst. l.1. c.4.
Liv. l.3. Pag.177.
Fusii is read for Furii, Valesii for Valerii, ⌈Vetusius, for Veturius.⌉ If the Geographers exclude the Ostidamnii and Cossini from this place, it will be extreme hard to find any other for them upon the Western Ocean. ⌈Pancirollus in his Commentary upon the Notitia, thinks that the Tribunus Cohortis Cornoviorum should be read Cornubiorum, and so makes that to be one of the Roman names of this Tract; how truly, let others judge. But by whatever names they were anciently called,⌉ their Bounds are divided at this day into two parts , Cornwall and Devonshire; of which in their order.

Last updated Sunday, March 27, 2016 at 11:52