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Last Updated:  Friday, 21 February, 2003, 10:46 GMT
Call for pre-Roman British history in schools
Bronze Age maze
A Bronze Age maze discovered in Britain
A leading archeologist, whose Cambridgeshire dig transformed perceptions of the Bronze Age, wants school children to be taught pre-Roman Britain.

Dr Francis Pryor, president of the Council for British Archaeology, believes that, contrary to popular belief, the Romans did not civilise the Ancient Britons, but made the road system worse.

Dr Pryor, who led a major excavation at Flag Fen, near Peterborough, also accuses the Romans of stifling Celtic art with their militaristic culture.

"They essentially suppressed British culture and in a way falsified British sub-history," he said.

Dr Francis Pryor
Dr Pryor excavated a site in Cambridgeshire

"Our education authorities start history lessons with the Roman invasion when in my opinion it started long before that.

"Look at Celtic art. The Romans gave us nothing in that way.

"We have underestimated our own achievements."

He said the Roman roads gave a "false importance" to London and without them the country would have evolved into a better system of regional hubs.

In a new Channel 4 documentary, Britain BC, Dr Pryor offers a new view of the country before the Romans arrived.



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