As an outsider looking in -- I am, after all, a Roman emperor -- I am always bemused by the rampant Pictish nationalism on the internet. Whenever the subject of the Romans in Scotland arises, you can be sure that a Pictish sympathiser will pop up to berate us for our interest in an alien imperialist power. In any discussion of Caledonia, it seems that we should be rooting for the underdog, the downtrodden native.
The resurgence of interest in the Ninth Legion (see previous posts here and here) seems to have touched a Pictish nerve. And an earlier post on Roman Nonsense on the internet attracted a rash of argumentative comments from individuals with suspiciously Pictish names like Thormod and Calag.
It is one thing to be enthusiastically interested in a past culture, and steeping yourself in the evidence for that culture. After all, re-enactors do that, and occasionally come up with a surprisingly new slant on the ancient evidence. But it is quite another thing to be fanatically obsessed to the point that evidence no longer matters, and a blinkered anti-Roman, anti-imperialist view colors your judgment.
Still, at least the AlbaWest web site (which started that particular line of discussion) is now extinct. Just like the Picts.