Return to Roman Ruins in Britain
"And so, having reformed the army quite in the manner of a monarch, he set out for Britain, and there he corrected many abuses and was the first to construct a wall, eighty miles in length, which was to separate the barbarians from the Romans."
Augustan History (XI.2)
This line from the biography of Hadrian is the only ancient literary evidence for his having built the Wall.
Ordered by the emperor, probably when he visited the province in AD 122, Hadrian's Wall is the most important Roman monument in Britain. It runs for 73 miles, from the River Tyne to the Solway Firth and can best be seen at Housesteads (just over the rise), Vindolanda (Chesterholm), Chesters, and South Shields, where there are on-site museums. Corbridge and the fort at Birdoswald also are of interest.
Just south of the wall is a temple to Mithras.