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ancient inhabitants of central and N Scotland, of uncertain origin. First mentioned (A.D. 297) by the Roman writer Eumenius as northern invaders of Roman Britain, they were probably descendants of late Bronze Age and early Iron Age invaders of Britain. Their language is thought to have been a superimposition of Celtic on a pre-Celtic and non-Indo-European language, but there is no undisputed interpretation of it or their culture. By the early 7th cent. there was a unified Pictish kingdom north of a line from the Clyde to the Forth rivers. It apparently had a matrilinear system of succession and had probably adopted Celtic Christianity. To the south of the Picts, Scottish invaders from Ireland had established the kingdom of Dalriada in the 5th cent. Between 843 and 850 Kenneth IKenneth I
(Kenneth mac Alpin), d. 858, traditional founder of the kingdom of Scotland. He succeeded his father, Alpin, as king of Dalriada (the kingdom of the Gaelic Scots in W Scotland) and c.
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, king of Dalriada, established himself also as king of the Picts, although how and why is not clear. The kingdom of Alba thus formed became the kingdom of Scotland.


See W. C. Dickinson, Scotland from the Earliest Times to 1603 (rev. ed. 1965); I. Henderson, Picts (1967); A. B. Scott, The Pictish Nation (1977).



(Latin Picti), a group of tribes that constituted the ancient population of Scotland. The Picts continually made raids on Roman Britain, reaching London in the 360’s. In the sixth century they were converted to Christianity by the Irish missionary Columban. In the mid-ninth century they were conquered by the Scots and were assimilated by them.

References in periodicals archive ?
It could be that we are seeing an alliance between the Picts and local Britons - two crests coming together, almost like a coat of arms," Toolis said.
Wainwright's inspiring compendium The Problem of the Picts (Thomas Nelson & Sons 1955) and echoes its mission of bringing different disciplines to bear.
The storyline is exceptionally simple and chronicles the life of a centurion, together with a few Roman buddies, the only survivors of a Pict massacre, who are continuously hunted by a female tracker, Elain, whose traumatic history at Roman hands has emotionally scarred her for life; she is described by a Pict necromancer as having "a soul which is an empty vessel--to be filled with Roman blood".
It's now up to Dias and the small band of remaining soldiers (and a cook) to rescue their noble leader and fight the Picts on their home turf .
And as this survival/revenge adventure shows how the ruthless guerrilla tactics of the Picts proved too much for the armies of the Emperor, Centurion feels gritty and authentic.
Dominic (The Wire) West has a small role as a Roman general loved by his men, but Bond girl Kurylenko is rather disappointing as the mute Pict fighting machine who is supposed to be a vicious hunter, but in the movie seems barely able to hold her spear let alone fight.
The value of students receiving such university-based part-time training is evident in TIC's PICTS winners.
What about the early Britons, Romans, Jutes, Picts, Danes and Normans who invaded England too?
Written in the 7th century on remote Scottish island of Iona, and found today in the archives of the Swiss town of Shauffhausen, the forgotten manuscript -- the 'Vita Columba' gives dramatic details of Arthur's last battle against the Picts in Scotland and predates English accounts of Arthur by several hundred years.
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The French cartoon hero and sidekick Obelix hit the Highlands in Asterix and the Picts.
The Picts ruled parts of Scotland during the Dark Ages before they were eventually assimilated into the Gaelic-speaking Scots.