Before the Romans invaded, the Picts were a collection of Celtic tribes, like the Britons to the south, but the Picts were never conquered by Rome. In time, though, Rome’s wars upon them forced them into a confederation. The Picts elect their king from the royal female line, in order to rotate the position fairly among the constituent tribes. The Roman emperor Hadrian built a great wall across the north of the island to mark the empire’s borders, and to keep out the Picts. Since then, the Picts have simply bypassed the wall by launching naval raids into the south, often in conjunction with the Scots who live on the other side of the mountains. In 478, the famous king Drust, son of Erp, died. For a little over a decade, his brother Nechtan has ruled. Living beneath the shadow of his famous brother, Nechtan dreams of wealth and glory from pillaging the Britons as Drust once did.
Impending Issue: For Wealth and Glory
The end of Roman rule in Britain left the Picts’ neighbors to the south vulnerable. Eboracum and Rheged maintain the garrisons along Hadrian’s Wall, making a land invasion difficult. Instead, Drust brought wealth and glory to his kingdom by launching maritime raids into the vulnerable southeastern parts of the island — the area which, incidentally, also had the most to take. The Saxons hired by Vortigernos ended Drust’s raids, but now that they have turned against the Britons, the island is ripe for plunder once more.