Map Showing Barbury and Liddington Castles
Connected by the Ancient Ridgeway
In past blog articles, I've gone back and forth on whether to favor Bath in Somerset or the Badbury at Liddington Castle in Wiltshire as Arthur's Badon. I've made it clear that while the spelling Badon MUST relate to Bath, it could well be that this place became accidentally substituted for the Liddington Badbury.
I've come to realize that I really can't offer anything other than a logical argument in favor, ultimately, of the Liddington Badbury.
While Agned as deriving from Agnetis, the genitive of Agnes the virgin saint, looks good linguistically, as we cannot demonstrate that St. Agnes was EVER present at Bath as a Christian substitute for Sulis Minerva, I don't feel I can support this idea any longer. It is clever, but not convincing.
On the other hand, there is no doubt whatsoever that Breguoin does, in fact, represent Brewyn/Bremenium, a Roman fort found in the Cheviots of Northumberland. However, as I've demonstrated before in some detail, the meaning of the root of Breguoin has exactly the same meaning as the root of the place-name Liddington, an alternate name for the Wiltshire Badbury hill-fort. We have also seen that Cerdic's/Ceredig's/Arthur's father Ceawlin/Maquicoline/Cunedda fought at Barbury Castle or the 'Fort of the Bear', only a very short distance from the Liddington Badbury along the ancient Ridgeway. It is very possible that the English called Barbury the Bear's Fort because Arthur was there in some capacity (the Welsh arth meaning 'bear'). Granted, we are also told in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle that Ceawlin took Bath.
Agned is easily dispensed with. I discussed how in my book THE ARTHUR OF HISTORY, and cited top Celticists in support of the idea I presented there. What I did was to adopt Dr. Andrew Breeze's quite sensible proposal that Agned was a misspelling of agued (the n > u copying error is a common one), a known Welsh word which simply means "distress, dire straits" or the like. In other words, the host or hosts at Liddington Castle/Badbury were in 'dire straits, difficulty, anxiety' (suggested meanings provided by Dr. Graham Isaac). Agned is thus not a real place-name at all, but instead a poetic descriptor of what happened at the battle.
For now, I will remain content with this analysis of the Agned and Breguoin place-names - until and if I encounter evidence or a counter-argument which convinces me otherwise.