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43Britain is further described as Roman in the Prosper’s slightly later Contra Collatorem.44The plausibility of this statement might be questioned, but the fact that such a view was possible is significant in itself. Ties with the Continent were clearly ongoing. Britain was not isolated from Continental affairs and continued to have a role in them, even if it was a peripheral one. Germanus’s visits are particularly important for the glimpses they provide into British power structures. Problematically, governing structures are notable predominantly by their absence from the narrative.45The only figures of note are the uir tribuniciae potestatis–‘man of tribunary power’ whose daughter Germanus cures of blindness in his first visit, and Elafius, a regionis illius primus–‘a leading man of the region’ whom Germanus meets on the second visit.46The nature of these figures is not elaborated upon, but their descriptions are such as to suggest no more than local 39First noted by Chadwick, Poetry and Letters, pp. 255-59. Also, Rees, Pelagius, p. 109. 40Barrett, 'Saint Germanus and the British Missions', pp. 206-14. 41Higham, 'Germanus and Fifth-Century Britain', pp. 131-34. 42Charles-Edwards, 'Palladius, Prosper and Leo', pp. 1-10. Also Wood, 'Fall of the Western Empire'. 43Con.VG, 27; with Thompson, Saint Germanus of Auxerre, pp. 28-30. Prosper, by contrast, in his Contra Collatorem, 21, associates this exile with Germanus’s first visit. Discussion: Charles-Edwards, 'Palladius, Prosper and Leo', pp. 7-8; Wood, 'Fall of the Western Empire', pp. 251-52. 44Prosper, Contra Collatorem, 21. The Contra Collatorem can be dated to c.433 as Prosper makes passing reference to it being 20 years since the start of the Pelegian heresy, which he dates to 413 in his Chronicle. 45Thompson, Saint Germanus of Auxerre, pp. 26-27. 46Con.VG, 15, 26-27 respectively.
The Origins of Anglo-Saxon Kingship 113 significance. There were also, presumably, secular authorities able to enforce the exile of the heretics. Some form of authority had also presumably communicated with the Continent leading to Gemanus’s visit in the first place.47Military leaders for both the Pictish and Saxon force and the opposing British force, despite Germanus’s involvement, can also be assumed.48Despite all of this the absence of power structures remains striking. Elsewhere in the Vita GermaniConstantius is most forthcoming concerning Germanus’s interactions with secular authorities.49Instinctively, one feels that secular authorities ought to play a role in the British portions of the narrative also. Presumably such figures would either be Pelagian and therefore needed to be heroically corrected –a feat we might feel that Constantius was sure to report –or they were orthodox and presumably keen to assist Germanus in sorting out their internal heresy problem. One could plead ignorance on Constantius’s part, but the links between Britain and the Continent identified above make this seem unlikely. Political super-structures are simply not apparent in the Vita Germani.