Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 04.djvu/417

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.

had been little studied, and there were in England few, if any, persons capable of perceiving that the Latinity of the pseudo-Richard was not that of a fourteenth-century monk. Bertram's antiquarian information, moreover, was, on the whole, quite on a level with the best knowledge of his time. The spurious treatise, therefore, was eagerly accepted by most of the English antiquaries as an invaluable source of information on the Roman geography of Britain ; and the injury which the forgery has inflicted on this study can scarcely be overestimated. Amongst the eminent writers whose speculations are seriously vitiated by the admission of this fictitious authority may be mentioned Whitaker (the historian of Manchester), General Roy, Dr. Lingard, Lappenberg, and Stuart (the author of 'Caledonia Romana'). The map of Britain contained in Dr. William Smith's 'Classical Atlas' abounds with errors derived from this source, and many of Bertram's imaginary names of Roman stations have found their way into the ordnance maps. In fact, nearly all the current works on Roman Britain show important traces of the same misleading influence. Although one or two earlier scholars (as Reynolds in his 'Commentary on Antoninus') had ventured to suggest that the monk of Westminster had drawn somewhat freely on his imagination, it was not till near the middle of this century that the work was seriously suspected to be a modern forgery. This suspicion gained strength from the fact that a diligent search at Copenhagen failed to discover any trace of the original manuscript. The question, however, was not conclusively settled until the publication in the 'Gentleman's Magazine' for 1866 and 1867 of a series of papers by the late B. B. Woodward, librarian of Windsor Castle. Mr. Woodward showed that the handwriting of Bertram's alleged facsimile specimen was a mixture of styles of several different periods, the forms of some of the letters being quite modern, or indeed entirely imaginary. He also pointed out that Bertram's Latin is, for the most part., a literal rendering of the English idiom of the eighteenth century, containing many words (as statio for a Roman 'station,' and supplementum for a 'supplement' or appendix) used in modern senses, which are as foreign to the usage of mediieval writers as to that of the ancient Romans, and gave instances in which the forger had copied the mistakes of Camden and the false readings of modern editions of the classics. In spite of this masterly exposure, a translation of the work, with no expression of doubt as to its genuineness, was published in 1872 by Br. Giles, as one of the 'Six English Chronicles' in Bohn's 'Antiquarian Library;' and Bertram's forgery, though now repudiated by all competent scholars, still continues to mislead ill-informed students of British antiquities. Bertram died (according to Nyerup's Literaturlexicon) in 1765. Besides the work already referred to, he published at Copenhagen : 1. 'An Essay on the Excellency of the English Tongue' (1749). 2. 'Rudimenta Grammaticæ Anglicanæ' (1750). 8. 'Ethics from various Authors' (1751). 4. 'The Royal English-Danish Grammar' (1753). 5. 'A corrected edition (in German) of Dauw's Wohlunterrichteter Schilderer und Mahler' (1755). 6. An edition of Nennius (1758). 7. A Danish translation of an English work 'On the great Advantages of a Godly Life' (1760). 8. 'A Statistical Account of the Danish Army' (in German, 1761 ; in Danish, 1762).

[Stukeley's Family Memoirs, ed. Lukis; Stukeley's Itinerarium Curiosum ; Nyerup og Kraft, Almindeligt Literaturlexicon ; Gent. Mag. March 1866, May 1866, October 1866, October 1867.]

H. B.

BERTRAM, ROGER (d. 1242), judge and baronial leader, was son of William Bertram, lord of Mitford in Northumberland. Having joined the northern barons in their advance on London in the spring of 1215, his castle and barony of Mitford were subsequently (31 Jan. 1216) seized on by the king (Claus. 17 John, m. 11), and entrusted to William de Ulecotes. After the accession of Henry III he made his peace, 24 July 1217 (Claus. 1 Hen. III, m. 13), but only recovered Mitford from Philip de Ulecotes after many months litigation and a fine of 100l. (Claus. 1 Hen. III, m. 6 dors. ; 2 Hen. III, m. 8, m. 15). Becoming in favour with the court he was one of the witnesses to Henry's pledge to marry his sister to the King of the Scots, 15 July 1220 (Rymer's Fœdera, i. 241). He was summoned to besiege Cockermouth 3 Feb. 1221 (Claus. 5 Hen. IIII, m. 16 dors.), and was excused scutage 'pro fideli servicio suo,' 3 July 1224 (Claus. 8 Hen. III, m. 11). He was appointed a justice itinerant for Northumberland 14 July 1225 (ib. 9 Hen. III, m. 11 dors.), and 14 Dec. 1226 (ib. 10 Hen. III, m. 26 dors.), and for Cumberland 30 June 1226 (ib. 10 Hen. III, m. l5 dors.), and 10 Sept. 1227 (ib. 11 Hen. III, m. 5 dors.). In 18 Henry III (1233-4) he was again appointed for both these counties and for Lancashire, and in March 1237 he was a witness to the agreement at York before Cardinal Otho as to the differences between England and Scotland. At the beginning of 1242 he paid 35 marks to be excused from the Gascon