There are many Yorks in this world, old and new. The oldest of them all lies in Yorkshire in the north of England, 200 miles north of London, where the rivers Ouse and Fosse meet.
71 AD ~ Quintus Petillius Cerialis founds the Roman fortress of Eboracum
Originally built to subdue the confederation of Celtic tribes called the Brigantes, the fortress of Eboracum grew and became the capital of Roman Britain and even a leading city in the whole Empire. In about 400 AD, the Roman legions were withdrawn to Gaul and the Anglo Saxons invaded the country. In legend King Arthur may have recaptured the town, but in life Eboracum became Eoforwic and main seat for the kingdom of Northumbria.
866 ~ Ivar the Boneless and his Danish Vikings capture York
The bloodthirsty Vikings renamed the city to Jorvik and settled there as farmers and traders. The capital became an important river port. The city grew and fortified but was taken back by King Eadred of Wessex in 954, and Northumbria was united with the southern kingdom. The ruling of the city was fought over by locals, Southerners and Vikings from the north until 1066, when the the Vikings were driven out at the Battle of Stamford Bridge, while the Normans moved in in the south.
1069 ~ William the Conqueror conquers York from Northern rebels
Over the next 300 years York became the second largest city in England. The impressive, still standing stone wall and gates were built during this period, and rebuilding of the Minster Cathedral, with history from the 5th century, was started. The prosperity came to an end in the 1400s, however. Due to plagues and wars the population declined and the important wool industry was taken elsewhere. It seemed to churn out underdog rebels
- Guy Fawkes was born here in 1570, and it was one of the king's last strongholds in the English Civil War.
1644 ~ After the Battle of Marston Moor, York is besieged and surrenders to the Parliamentarians
Although trade and manufacturing were in decline, York grew as a social and cultural centre for wealthy northerners. Many new town houses and public buildings were bult. The coach service to London, formerly a four-day journey, was improved to taking 20 hours in the 1830s.
1839 ~ The railway comes to York
York became a major railway centre, which meant a rise for the manufacturing industry. Special goods like chocolate and cocoa became and still are important products of the city. New churches were constructed all over the place during the Victorian era, and today there are about 20 of them inside the city walls.
And then came the tourist invasion.