Gateway to the Classics: The World's Story: England by Eva March Tappan
The World's Story: England by  Eva March Tappan

The Converted Britons

By William Holman Hunt

(English painter,  1827-1910)

IN the latter part of the second century, Britain, then a Roman province, was converted to Christianity. The new religion was not introduced, however, without a bitter struggle on the part of the Druid priesthood.

An episode of this struggle is shown in the illustration. A party of Britons, incited by the Druid priests, has attacked the Christian missionaries. One, at least, is already captured, but another has escaped to the protection of the frail but of a family of Christian natives. He is exhausted by his flight, and they are caring for him and trying to revive him. Two men are anxiously guarding the doorway, and a young boy with his ear to the ground is listening to the sounds without. One woman supports the fainting form of the missionary, looking fearfully toward the door. Another is bathing his forehead. A little boy at the left is holding a cup, into which an older brother is squeezing the juice of a bunch of grapes from the vines overhead. A girl is tenderly removing a brier from the victim's robe. The father of the family is evidently a fisherman, for a net hangs on the post at the right, and the cabin stands beside a stream. Against the wall of the but stands a Druidic stone; but upon it a cross is rudely drawn to indicate a change of faith.

 Table of Contents  |  Index  |  Home  | Previous: How the Romans Lived in Britain  |  Next: The Anglo-Saxon Invasion
Copyright (c) 2005 - 2023   Yesterday's Classics, LLC. All Rights Reserved.