High, large remains of a circular cyclopean tower, called Dun-Aengus, ascribed to the Fir-bolg or Belgae; or, individually, to the first of three brothers, Aengus, Conchobar and Nil, who reached Aran Islands from Scotland in the 1st century A.D.
The Gallo-Celtic tribes bore the general appellation of Belgae, and among these the Nervii, inhabiting the district between the Scheldt and the Sambre were at the date of Caesar's invasion, 57 B.C., the most warlike and important.
The Treveri or Treviri, from whom the city derived its name, were one of the most powerful tribes among the Belgae, and according to Julius Caesar, who conquered them in 56 B.C., possessed the best cavalry.
BELGAE, a Celtic people first mentioned by Caesar, who states that they formed the third part of Gaul, and were separated from the Celtae by the Sequana (Seine) and Matrona (Marne).
4), the Belgae were a people of German origin, who had crossed the Rhine in early times and driven out the Galli.
In any case, only the eastern districts would have been affected by invaders from over the Rhine, the chief seat of the Belgae proper being in the west, the country occupied by the Bellovaci, Ambiani and Atrebates, to which it is probable (although the reading is uncertain) that Caesar gives the distinctive name Belgium (corresponding to the old provinces of Picardy and Artois).
Holmes (Caesar's Conquest of Gaul, 1899), who comes to the conclusion that "when the Reman delegates told Caesar that the Belgae were descended from the Germans, they probably only meant that the ancestors of the Belgic conquerors had formerly dwelt in Germany, and this is equally true of the ancestors of the Gauls who gave their name to the Celtae; but, on the other hand, it is quite possible that in the veins of some of the Belgae flowed the blood of genuine German forefathers."
In 57 B.C., after the defeat of Ariovistus, the Belgae formed a coalition against Caesar, and in 52 took part in the general rising under Vercingetorix.
After their final subjugation, Caesar combined the territory of the Belgae, Celtae and Aquitani into a single province (Gallia Comata).
These successes roused natural alarm in the minds of the Belgae - a confederacy of tribes in the north-west of Gaul, whose civilization was less advanced than that of the Celtae of the centre - and in the spring of 57 B.C. Caesar determined to anticipate the offensive movement which they were understood to be preparing and marched northwards into the territory of the Remi (about Reims), who alone amongst their neighbours were friendly to Rome.
Real knowledge begins with two Celtic invasions, that of the Goidels in the later part of the Bronze Age, and that of the Brythons and Belgae in the Iron Age.
Beginning with the Belgae and the Gallia Belgica of the Romans, the use of the adjective to distinguish the inhabitants of the south Netherlands can be traced through all stages of subsequent history.
In 103 they marched back through Gaul, which they overran as far as the Seine, where the Belgae made a stout resistance.
The Belgae, who were Cimbric in origin, has spread across the Rhine and given their name to all northern France and Belgium (Gallia Belgica).
Their empire in Gaul, encroached upon in the north by the Belgae, a kindred race, and in the south by the Iberians, gradually contracted in area and eventually crumbled to pieces.
These are divided by Caesar in his Commentaries into three groups: the Aquitanians to the south of the Garonne; the Celts, properly so called, from the Garonne to the Seine and the Marne; and the Belgae, from the Seine to the Rhine.