The Ostrogoths were the eastern branch of the older Goths. The Ostrogoths traced their origins to the Greutungi – a branch of the Goths who had migrated southward from the Baltic Sea and established a kingdom north of the Black Sea, during the 3rd and 4th centuries, they built an empire stretching from the Black Sea to the Baltic. The Ostrogoths were literate in the 3rd century, their trade with the Romans was developed, their Danubian kingdom reached its zenith under King Ermanaric, said to have committed suicide at an old age when the Huns attacked his people and subjugated them in about 370. After their annexation by the Huns, little is heard of the Ostrogoths for about 80 years, after which they reappear in Pannonia on the middle Danube River as federates of the Romans. After the collapse of the Hun empire after the Battle of Nedao, Ostrogoths migrated westwards towards Illyria and the borders of Italy, while some remained in the Crimea. During the late 5th and 6th centuries, under Theodoric the Great most of the Ostrogoths moved first to Moesia and conquered the Kingdom of Italy of the Germanic warrior Odoacer.
In 493, Theodoric the Great established a kingdom in Italy. A period of instability ensued, tempting the Eastern Roman Emperor Justinian to declare war on the Ostrogoths in 535 in an effort to restore the former western provinces of the Roman Empire; the Byzantines were successful, but under the leadership of Totila, the Goths reconquered most of the lost territory until Totila's death at the Battle of Taginae. The war lasted for 21 years and caused enormous damage and depopulation of Italy; the remaining Ostrogoths were absorbed into the Lombards who established a kingdom in Italy in 568. A division of the Goths is first attested in 291; the Tervingi are first attested around that date. The Greuthungi are first named by Ammianus Marcellinus, writing no earlier than 392 and later than 395, basing his account on the words of a Tervingian chieftain, attested as early as 376; the Ostrogoths are first named in a document dated September 392 from Milan. Claudian mentions. According to Herwig Wolfram, the primary sources either use the terminology of Tervingi/Greuthungi or Vesi/Ostrogothi and never mix the pairs.
All four names were used together, but the pairing was always preserved, as in Gruthungi, Tervingi, Vesi. That the Tervingi were the Vesi/Visigothi and the Greuthungi the Ostrogothi is supported by Jordanes, he identified the Visigothic kings from Alaric I to Alaric II as the heirs of the fourth-century Tervingian king Athanaric and the Ostrogothic kings from Theodoric the Great to Theodahad as the heirs of the Greuthungian king Ermanaric. This interpretation, though common among scholars today, is not universal. According to the Jordanes' Getica, around 400 the Ostrogoths were ruled by Ostrogotha and derived their name from this "father of the Ostrogoths", but modern historians assume the converse, that Ostrogotha was named after the people. Both Herwig Wolfram and Thomas Burns conclude that the terms Tervingi and Greuthungi were geographical identifiers used by each tribe to describe the other; this terminology therefore dropped out of use after the Goths were displaced by the Hunnic invasions.
In support of this, Wolfram cites Zosimus as referring to a group of "Scythians" north of the Danube who were called "Greuthungi" by the barbarians north of the Ister. Wolfram asserts, he further believes that the terms "Vesi" and "Ostrogothi" were used by the peoples to boastfully describe themselves. On this understanding, the Greuthungi and Ostrogothi were less the same people; the nomenclature of Greuthungi and Tervingi fell out of use shortly after 400. In general, the terminology of a divided Gothic people disappeared after they entered the Roman Empire; the term "Visigoth", was an invention of the sixth century. Cassiodorus, a Roman in the service of Theodoric the Great, invented the term Visigothi to match Ostrogothi, which terms he thought of as "western Goths" and "eastern Goths" respectively; the western-eastern division was a simplification and a literary device of sixth-century historians where political realities were more complex. Furthermore, Cassiodorus used the term "Goths" to refer only to the Ostrogoths, whom he served, reserved the geographical term "Visigoths" for the Gallo-Hispanic Goths.
This usage, was adopted by the Visigoths themselves in their communications with the Byzantine Empire and was in use in the seventh century. Other names for the Goths abounded. A "Germanic" Byzantine or Italian author referred to one of the two peoples as the Valagothi, meaning "Roman Goths". In 484 the Ostrogoths had been called the Valameriaci because they followed Theodoric, a descendant of Valamir; this terminology survived in the Byzantine East as late as the reign of Athalaric, called του Ουαλεμεριακου by John Malalas. The Gothic name makes its first appearance sometime between 16 and 18 AD with earlier indications related to the Guti of Scandia or attributable to the Gutones. Procopius wrote of the Gauts in Thule and Cassiodorus mentioned the Gauthigoths amid his list of Scandinavian peoples. Two distinct groups of Gothic peoples are first attested to in 291, the western Tervingi-Vesi and the eastern Greutungi-Ostrogothi. "Greuthungi" may mean "steppe dwellers" or "people of t
Marshal is a term used in several official titles in various branches of society. As marshals became trusted members of the courts of Medieval Europe, the title grew in reputation. During the last few centuries, it has been used for elevated offices, such as in military rank and civilian law enforcement. "Marshal" is an ancient loanword from Norman French, which in turn is borrowed from Old Frankish *marhskalk, being still evident in Middle Dutch maerscalc, in modern Dutch maarschalk. It is cognate with Old High German mar-scalc "id.", modern German Marschall. It and meant "horse servant", from Germanic *marha- "horse" and *skalk- "servant"; this "horse servant" origin is retained in the current French name for farrier: maréchal-ferrant. The late Roman and Byzantine title of comes stabuli was a calque of the Germanic, which became Old French conestable and modern connétable, borrowed from the Old French, the English word "constable". In Byzantium, a marshal with elevated authority, notably a borderlands military command, was known as an exarch.
In many countries, the rank of marshal, cf. field marshal, is the highest army rank, outranking other general officers. The equivalent navy rank is admiral of the fleet. Marshals are but not appointed only in wartime. In many countries in Europe, the special symbol of a marshal is a baton, their insignia incorporate batons. In some countries, the term "marshal" is used instead of "general" in the higher air force ranks; the four highest Royal Air Force ranks are marshal of the Royal Air Force, air chief marshal, air marshal and air vice marshal. The five-star rank of marshal of the Air Force is used by some Commonwealth and Middle Eastern air forces. In the French Army and most National Armies modeled upon the French system, maréchal des logis is a cavalry term equivalent to sergeant; some historical rulers have used special "marshal" titles to reward certain subjects. Though not military ranks, these honorary titles have been bestowed upon successful military leaders, such as the famous grand marshal of Ayacucho Antonio José de Sucre.
Most famous are the Marshals of France, not least under Napoléon I. Another such title was that of Reichsmarschall, bestowed upon Hermann Göring by Adolf Hitler, although it was never a regular title as it had been "invented" for Göring, the only titleholder in history. In England during the First Barons' War the title "Marshal of the Army of God" was bestowed upon Robert Fitzwalter by election. Both the Soviet Union and Russia have army general as well as "marshal" in their rank system, the latter being an honorary rank; the following articles discuss the rank of marshal as used by specific countries: Feldmarschall and Feldmarschalleutnant Marshal of Bolivia Marshal Marshal Rigsmarsk Marshal of the German Democratic Republic Marshal of Finland France Marshal of France Marshal-of-Lodgings German Empire Generalfeldmarschall Japan Shōgun Italy Marshal of Italy Marshal – a warrant officer rank Land marshal of the Livonian Order Marshal of the Mongolian People's Republic Marshal Marshal of the air force Marshal of Paraguay Marshal of Peru Marszałek Polski Marshal Mareşal Field Marshal Marshal of the Russian Federation The Soviet Union had three marshals ranks: Marshal of the Soviet Union Chief marshal of the branch was used in five Soviet military branches: the air force, armoured troops, engineer troops, signal troops.
Marshal of the branch was used in five Soviet military branches – the air force, armoured troops, engineer troops, signal troops. Marshal of the branch is considered equivalent to the rank general of the army, used in the infantry and the marines. Mareşal Field marshal, marshal of the Royal Air Force Marshal of Venezuela Marshal of Yugoslavia See also: Mariscal and the upper condestable These ranks are considered the equivalent to a marshal: Chom Phon General of the army, fleet admiral and general of the Air Force Arteshbod Mushir Protostrator Stratarches Vojvoda Vrhovnik Wonsu Yuan Shuai Sima Gensui Nguyên soái or Thống chế The name is applied to the leader of military police organizations. Provost marshal – a term used in many countries Provost Marshal General – head of the military police in the United States Usually in monarchies, one or several of the senior digni
The solidus, nomisma, or bezant was a pure gold coin issued in the Late Roman Empire. Under Constantine, who introduced it on a wide scale, it had a weight of about 4.5 grams. It was replaced in Western Europe by Pepin the Short's currency reform, which introduced the silver-based pound/shilling/penny system, under which the shilling functioned as a unit of account equivalent to 12 pence developing into the French sou. In Eastern Europe, the nomisma was debased by the Byzantine emperors until it was abolished by Alexius I in 1092, who replaced it with the hyperpyron, which came to be known as a "bezant"; the Byzantine solidus inspired the slightly less pure Arab dinar. In late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, the solidus functioned as a unit of weight equal to 1/72 of a pound; the solidus was introduced by Diocletian in AD 301 as a replacement of the aureus, composed of solid gold and minted 60 to the Roman pound. His minting was on a small scale and the coin only entered widespread circulation under Constantine I after AD 312, when it permanently replaced the aureus.
Constantine's solidus was struck at a rate of 72 to a Roman pound of pure gold. By this time, the solidus was worth 275,000 debased denarii. With the exception of the early issues of Constantine the Great and the odd usurpers the solidus today is a much more affordable gold Roman coin to collect compared to the older aureus; those of Valens Honorius and Byzantine issues. The solidus was maintained unaltered in weight and purity until the 10th century. During the 6th and 7th centuries "lightweight" solidi of 20, 22 or 23 siliquae were struck along with the standard weight issues for trade purposes or to pay tribute. Many of these lightweight coins have been found in Europe and Georgia; the lightweight solidi were distinguished by different markings on the coin in the exergue for the 20 and 22 siliquae coins and by stars in the field for the 23 siliquae coins. In theory the solidus was struck from pure gold, but because of the limits of refining techniques, in practice the coins were about 23k fine.
In the Greek-speaking world during the Roman period, in the Byzantine economy, the solidus was known as the νόμισμα nomisma. In the 10th century Emperor Nicephorus II Phocas introduced a new lightweight gold coin called the tetarteron nomisma that circulated alongside the solidus, from that time the solidus became known as the ἱστάμενον νόμισμα histamenon nomisma in the Greek speaking world, it was difficult to distinguish the two coins, as they had the same design and purity, there were no marks of value to distinguish the denominations. The only difference was the weight; the tetarteron nomisma was a lighter coin, about 4.05 grams, but the histamenon nomisma maintained the traditional weight of 4.5 grams. To eliminate confusion between the two, from the reign of Basil II the solidus was struck as a thinner coin with a larger diameter, but with the same weight and purity as before. From the middle of the 11th century the larger diameter histamenon nomisma was struck on a concave flan, though the smaller tetarteron nomisma continued to be struck on a smaller flat flan.
Former money changer Michael IV the Paphlagonian assumed the throne of Byzantium in 1034 and began the slow process of debasing both the tetarteron nomisma and the histamenon nomisma. The debasement was gradual at first, but accelerated rapidly: about 21 carats during the reign of Constantine IX, 18 carats under Constantine X, 16 carats under Romanus IV, 14 carats under Michael VII, 8 carats under Nicephorus III and 0 to 8 carats during the first eleven years of the reign of Alexius I. Alexius eliminated the solidus altogether. In its place he introduced; the weight and purity of the hyperpyron nomisma remained stable until the fall of Constantinople to the Crusaders in 1204. After that time the exiled Empire of Nicea continued to strike a debased hyperpyron nomisma. Michael VIII recaptured Constantinople in 1261, the Byzantine Empire continued to strike the debased hyperpyron nomisma until the joint reign of John V and John VI. After that time the hyperpyron nomisma continued as a unit of account, but it was no longer struck in gold.
From the 4th to the 11th centuries, solidi were minted at the Constantinopolitan Mint, but in Thessalonica, Rome, Ravenna, Alexandria, Carthage and other cities. During the 8th and 9th centuries the Syracuse mint produced a large number of solidi that failed to meet the specifications of the coins produced by the imperial mint in Constantinople; the Syracuse solidi were lighter and only 19k fine. Although imperial law forbade merchants from exporting solidi outside imperial territory, many solidi have been found in Russia, Central Europe and Syria. In the 7th century they became a desirable circulating currency in Arabian countries. Since the solidi circulating outside the empire were not used to pay taxes to the emperor, they did not get reminted, the soft pure-gold coins became worn. Through the end of the 7th century, Arabi
The Bulgars were Turkic semi-nomadic warrior tribes that flourished in the Pontic–Caspian steppe and the Volga region during the 7th century. Emerging as nomadic equestrians in the Volga-Ural region, according to some researchers their roots can be traced to Central Asia. During their westward migration across the Eurasian steppe the Bulgars absorbed other ethnic groups and cultural influences, including Hunnic and Indo-European peoples. Modern genetic research on Central Asian Turkic people and ethnic groups related to the Bulgars points to an affiliation with Western Eurasian populations; the Bulgars spoke a Turkic language, i.e. Bulgar language of Oghuric branch, they preserved the military titles and customs of Eurasian steppes, as well as pagan shamanism and belief in the sky deity Tangra. The Bulgars became semi-sedentary during the 7th century in the Pontic-Caspian steppe, establishing the polity of Old Great Bulgaria c. 635, absorbed by the Khazar Empire in 668 AD. In c. 679, Khan Asparukh conquered Scythia Minor, opening access to Moesia, established the First Bulgarian Empire, where the Bulgars became a political and military elite.
They merged subsequently with established Byzantine populations, as well as with settled Slavic tribes, were Slavicized, thus forming the ancestors of modern Bulgarians. The remaining Pontic Bulgars migrated in the 7th century to the Volga River, where they founded the Volga Bulgaria; the Volga Tatars and Chuvash people claim to be originated from the Volga Bulgars. The etymology of the ethnonym Bulgar is not understood and difficult to trace back earlier than the 4th century AD. Since the work of Wilhelm Tomaschek, it is said to be derived from the Common Turkic bulğha, bulga- or bulya, which with the consonant suffix -r implies a noun meaning "mixed". Other scholars have added that bulğha might imply "stir", "disturb", "confuse". and Talat Tekin interpreted bulgar as the verb form "mixing". Both Gyula Németh and Peter Benjamin Golden advocated the "mixed race" theory, but like Paul Pelliot, considered that "to incite", "rebel", or "to produce a state of disorder", i.e. the "disturbers", was a more etymology for migrating nomads.
According to Osman Karatay, if the "mixed" etymology relied on the westward migration of the Oğurs and merging with the Huns, north of the Black Sea, it was a faulty theory, since the Oghurs were documented in Europe as early as 463, while the Bulgars were not mentioned until 482 – an overly short time period for any such ethnogenesis to occur. However, the "mixing" in question may have occurred before the Bulgars migrated from further east, scholars such as Sanping Chen have noted analogous groups in Inner Asia, with phonologically similar names, who were described in similar terms: during the 4th Century, the Buluoji, a component of the "Five Barbarian" groups in Ancient China, were portrayed as both a "mixed race" and "troublemakers". Peter A. Boodberg noted that the Buluoji in the Chinese sources were recorded as remnants of the Xiongnu confederation, had strong Caucasian elements. Another theory linking the Bulgars to a Turkic people of Inner Asia has been put forward by Boris Simeonov, who identified them with the Pugu, a Tiele and/or Toquz Oguz tribe.
The Pugu were mentioned in Chinese sources from 103 BC up to the 8th century AD, were situated among the eastern Tiele tribes, as one of the highest-ranking tribes after the Uyghurs. According to the Chronicle by Michael the Syrian, which comprises several historical events of different age into one story, three mythical Scythian brothers set out on a journey from the mountain Imaon in Asia and reached the river Tanais, the country of the Alans called Barsalia, which would be inhabited by the Bulgars and the Pugurs; the names Onoğur and Bulgar were linked by Byzantine sources for reasons that are unclear. Karatay interpreted gur/gor as "country", noted the Tekin derivation of gur from the Altaic suffix -gir, related to the word yir, meaning "earth, place". Modern scholars consider the terms oğuz or oğur, as generic terms for Turkic tribal confederations, to be derived from Turkic *og/uq, meaning "kinship or being akin to"; the terms were not the same, as oq/ogsiz meant "arrow", while oğul meant "offspring, son", oğuš/uğuš was "tribe, clan", the verb oğša-/oqša meant "to be like, resemble".
There appears to be an etymological association between the Bulgars and the preceding Kutrigur and Utigur – as'Oğur tribes, with the ethnonym Bulgar as a "spreading" adjective. Golden considered the origin of the Kutrigurs and Utigurs to be obscure and their relationship to the Onogurs and Bulgars – who lived in similar areas at the same time – as unclear, he noted, however, an implication that the Kutrigurs and Utigurs were related to the Šarağur, that according to Procopius these were Hunnish tribal unions, of Cimmerian descent. Karatay considered the Kutrigurs and Utigurs to be two related, ancestral people, prominent tribes in the Bulgar union, but different from the Bulgars. Among many other theories regarding the etymology of Bulgar, the following have had limited support. An Eastern Germanic root meaning "combative" (i.e. cognate with the Latin pugn
Zeno the Isaurian named Tarasis Kodisa Rousombladadiotes, was Eastern Roman Emperor from 474 to 475 and again from 476 to 491. Domestic revolts and religious dissension plagued his reign, which succeeded to some extent in foreign issues, his reign saw the end of the Western Roman Empire following the deposition of Romulus Augustus and the death of Julius Nepos, but he contributed much to stabilising the Eastern Empire. In ecclesiastical history, Zeno is associated with the Henotikon or "instrument of union", promulgated by him and signed by all the Eastern bishops, with the design of solving the monophysite controversy. Zeno's original name was Tarasis, more Tarasikodissa in his native Isaurian language. Tarasis was born in Isauria, at Rusumblada renamed Zenonopolis in Zeno's honour, his father was called his mother Lallis, his brother Longinus. Tarasis had a wife, whose name indicates a relationship with the Constantinopolitan aristocracy, whose statue was erected near the Baths of Arcadius, along the steps that led to Topoi.
Near Eastern and other Christian traditions maintain that Zeno had two daughters and Theopiste, who followed a religious life, but historical sources attest the existence of only one son by Arcadia, called Zenon. According to ancient sources, Zeno's prestigious career—he had fought against Attila in 447 to defend Constantinople and been consul the following year—was the reason why another Isaurian officer, chose the Greek name Zeno when he married into the Imperial family, thus being known as Zeno when he rose to the throne; some modern historians suggest that the Isaurian general Zeno was the father of the emperor, but there is no consensus about this, other sources suggest that Tarasis was a member of Zeno's entourage. The Isaurians were a people who lived inland from the Mediterranean coast of Anatolia, in the core of the Taurus Mountains. Like most borderland tribes, they were looked upon as barbarians by the Romans though they had been Roman subjects for more than five centuries. However, being Orthodox Christians rather than Arians, as the Goths and other Germanic tribes were, they were not formally barred from the throne.
According to some scholars, in the mid-460s, the Eastern Roman Emperor, Leo I, wanted to balance the weight of the Germanic component of the army, whose leader was the Alan magister militum Aspar. He thought that Tarasis and his Isaurians could be that counterweight, called him, with many Isaurians, to Constantinople; this interpretation, has been contested. By the mid-460s, Arcadia and Zeno had been living at Constantinople for some time, where Lallis and Longinus lived, the latter married to a Valeria a woman of aristocrat rank. According to ancient sources, the earliest reference to Tarasis dates back to 464, when he put his hands on some letters written by Aspar's son, which proved that the son of the magister militum had incited the Sassanid King to invade Roman territory, promising to support the invasion. Through these letters, which Tarasis gave to Leo, the Emperor could dismiss Ardabur, who at the time was magister militum per Orientem and patricius, thus reducing Aspar's influence and ambition.
As reward for his loyalty, which Leo praised to Daniel the Stylite, Tarasis was appointed comes domesticorum, an office of great influence and prestige. This appointment could mean that Tarasis had been a protector domesticus, either at Leo's court in Constantinople, or attached at Ardabur's staff in Antioch. In 465, Leo and Aspar quarrelled about the appointment of consuls for the following year. To make himself more acceptable to the Roman hierarchy and the population of Constantinople, Tarasis adopted the Greek name of Zeno and used it for the rest of his life. In mid-late 466, Zeno married elder daughter of Leo I and Verina; the next year their son was born, Zeno became father of the heir apparent to the throne, as the only son of Leo I had died in his infancy. Zeno, was not present at the birth of his son, as in 467, he participated in a military campaign against the Goths. Zeno, as a member of the protectores domestici, did not take part in the disastrous expedition against the Vandals, led in 468 by Leo's brother-in-law Basiliscus.
The following year, during which he held the honour of the consulate, he was appointed magister militum per Thracias and led an expedition in Thrace. The sources do not state what enemy he fought there, historians had proposed either Goths or Huns, or the rebels of Anagastes. Either way, before leaving and Zeno asked for Daniel the Stylite's opinion about the campaign, Daniel answered that Zeno would be the target of a conspiracy but would escape unharmed. Indeed, Leo sent some of his personal soldiers with Zeno to protect him, but they were bribed by Aspar to capture him instead. Zeno was informed of their intention and fled to Serdica, because of this episode, Leo grew more suspicious of Aspar. After the attack, Zeno did not return to Constantinople, where Aspar and Ardabur were, still with considerable power. Instead, he moved to the "Long Wall" to Pylai and from there to Chalcedon. While waiting here for an opportunity to return to the capital, he was appointed magister militum per Orientem.
Basiliscus was Eastern Roman Emperor from 475 to 476. A member of the House of Leo, he came to power when Emperor Zeno was forced out of Constantinople by a revolt. Basiliscus was the brother of Empress Aelia Verina, the wife of Emperor Leo I, his relationship with the Emperor allowed him to pursue a military career that, after minor initial successes, ended in 468, when he led the disastrous Roman invasion of Vandal Africa, in one of the largest military operations of Late Antiquity. Basiliscus succeeded in seizing power in 475, exploiting the unpopularity of Emperor Zeno, the "barbarian" successor to Leo, a plot organised by Verina that had caused Zeno to flee Constantinople. However, during his short rule, Basiliscus alienated the fundamental support of the Church and the people of Constantinople, promoting the Miaphysite christological position in opposition to the Chalcedonian faith, his policy of securing his power through the appointment of loyal men to key roles antagonised many important figures in the imperial court, including his sister Verina.
So, when Zeno tried to regain his empire, he found no opposition, triumphantly entering Constantinople, capturing and killing Basiliscus and his family. The struggle between Basiliscus and Zeno impeded the Eastern Roman Empire's ability to intervene in the fall of the Western Roman Empire, which happened in early September 476; when the chieftain of the Heruli, deposed Western Emperor Romulus Augustus, sending the imperial regalia to Constantinople, Zeno had just regained his throne, was in no position to take any action but appoint Odoacer dux of Italy, thereby ending the Western Roman Empire. Of Balkan origin, Basiliscus was the brother of Aelia Verina, wife of Leo I, it has been argued that Basiliscus was uncle to the chieftain of the Odoacer. This link is based on the interpretation of a fragment by John of Antioch, which states that Odoacer and Armatus, Basiliscus' nephew, were brothers. However, not all scholars accept this interpretation, since sources do not say anything about the foreign origin of Basiliscus.
It is known that Basiliscus had a wife, at least one son, Marcus. Basiliscus' military career started under Leo I; the Emperor conferred upon his brother-in-law the dignities of dux, or commander-in-chief, in Thrace. In this country Basiliscus led a successful military campaign against the Bulgars in 463, he succeeded Rusticius as magister militum per Thracias, had several successes against the Goths and Huns. Basiliscus's value rose in Leo's consideration. Verina's intercession in favour of her brother helped Basiliscus' military and political career, with the conferral of the consulship in 465 and of the rank of patricius. However, his rise was soon to meet a serious reversal. In 468, Leo chose Basiliscus as leader of the famous military expedition against Carthage. All accounts agree that the invasion of the kingdom of the Vandals was one of the largest military undertakings recorded, although estimates of its exact size vary. According to Priscus and Nicephorus Gregoras, 100,000 ships were assembled.
Modern scholars consider Cedrenus's figure of each carrying 100 men, more likely. Peter Heather estimates a strength of 30,000 soldiers for the expedition and 50,000 total, when including sailors and the additional forces of Marcellinus and Heraclius of Edessa; the most conservative estimation for expedition expenses is of 64,000 pounds of gold, a sum that exceeded a whole year's revenue. The purpose of the operation was to punish the Vandal king Geiseric for the sacking of Rome in 455, in which the former capital of the Western Roman Empire was overwhelmed, the Empress Licinia Eudoxia and her daughters were taken as hostages; the plan was concerted between Eastern Emperor Leo, Western Emperor Anthemius, General Marcellinus, who enjoyed independence in Illyricum. Basiliscus was ordered to sail directly to Carthage, while Marcellinus attacked and took Sardinia, a third army, commanded by Heraclius, landed on the Libyan coast east of Carthage, making rapid progress, it appears that the combined forces met in Sicily, whence the three fleets moved at different periods.
Sardinia and Libya were conquered by Marcellinus and Heraclius, when Basiliscus cast anchor off the Promontorium Mercurii, now Cap Bon, opposite Sicily, about forty miles from Carthage. Geiseric requested Basiliscus to allow him five days to draw up the conditions of a peace. During the negotiations, Geiseric gathered his ships and attacked the Roman fleet; the Vandals had filled many vessels with combustible materials. During the night, these fire ships were propelled against the unguarded and unsuspecting Roman fleet; the Roman commanders tried to rescue some ships from destruction, but these manoeuvres were blocked by the attack of other Vandal vessels. Basiliscus fled in the heat of the battle. One half of the Roman fleet was burned, sunk, or captured, the other half followed the fugitive Basiliscus; the whole expedition had failed. Heraclius effected his retreat through the desert into Tripolitania, holding the position for two years until recalled. After returning to Constantinople, Basiliscus hid in the church of Hagia Sophia to escape the wrath of the people and the revenge of the Emperor.
By the mediation of Verina, Basiliscus obtained the Imperial pardon, was p
Leo I the Thracian
Leo I was Eastern Roman Emperor from 457 to 474. A native of Dacia Aureliana near historic Thrace, he was known as Leo the Thracian. Ruling the Eastern Empire for nearly 20 years, Leo proved to be a capable ruler, he oversaw many ambitious political and military plans, aimed at aiding the faltering Western Roman Empire and recovering its former territories. He is notable for being the first Eastern Emperor to legislate in Greek rather than Latin, he is commemorated as a Saint in the Orthodox Church, with his feast day on January 20. He was born Leo Marcellus in Thracia or in Dacia Aureliana province in the year 401 to a Thraco-Roman family, his Dacian origin is mentioned by Candidus Isaurus, while John Malalas believes that he was of Bessian stock. He served in the Roman army. Leo was the last of a series of emperors placed on the throne by Aspar, the Alan serving as commander-in-chief of the army, who thought Leo would be an easy puppet ruler. Instead, Leo became more and more independent from Aspar, causing tension that would culminate in the assassination of the latter.
Leo's coronation as emperor on 7 February 457, was the first known to involve the Patriarch of Constantinople. Leo I was thus able to eliminate Aspar; the price of the alliance was the marriage of Leo's daughter to Tarasicodissa, leader of the Isaurians, who, as Zeno, became emperor in 474. In 469, Aspar attempted to assassinate Zeno and nearly succeeded. In 471, Aspar's son Ardabur was implicated in a plot against Leo and Ardabur was killed by palace eunuchs acting on Leo's orders. Leo overestimated his capacities and he made some errors that menaced the internal order of the Empire; the Balkans were ravaged by the Ostrogoths, after a disagreement between the Emperor and the young chief Theodoric the Great, raised at Leo's court in Constantinople, where he was steeped in Roman government and military tactics. There were some raids by the Huns. However, these attackers were unable to take Constantinople thanks to the walls, rebuilt and reinforced in the reign of Theodosius II and against which they possessed no suitable siege engines.
Leo's reign was noteworthy for his influence in the Western Roman Empire, marked by his appointment of Anthemius as Western Roman Emperor in 467. He attempted to build on this political achievement with an expedition against the Vandals in 468, defeated due to the arrogance of Leo's brother-in-law Basiliscus; this disaster drained the Empire of men and money. Procopius estimated the costs of the expedition to be 130,000 pounds of gold; the expedition consisted of 1,113 ships carrying 100,000 men. After this defeat, the Vandals raided Greek coasts until a costly peace agreement was signed between Leo and Genseric. Leo became unpopular in his last days as Emperor for abolishing any non-religious celebration or event on Sundays. Leo died of dysentery at the age of 73 on 18 January 474. Leo and Verina had three children, their eldest daughter Ariadne was born prior to the death of Marcian. Ariadne had Leontia. Leontia was first betrothed to Patricius, a son of Aspar, but their engagement was annulled when Aspar and another of his sons, were assassinated in 471.
Leontia married Marcian, a son of Emperor Anthemius and Marcia Euphemia. The couple led a failed revolt against Zeno in 478–479, they were exiled to Isauria following their defeat. An unknown son was born in 463, he died five months following his birth. The only sources about him are a hagiography of Daniel the Stylite; the Georgian Chronicle, a 13th-century compilation drawing from earlier sources, reports a marriage of Vakhtang I of Iberia to Princess Helena of Byzantium, identifying her as a daughter of the predecessor of Zeno. This predecessor was Leo I, the tale attributing a third daughter to Leo. Cyril Toumanoff identified two children of this marriage: Mithridates of Iberia; this younger Leo was father of Guaram I of Iberia. The accuracy of the descent is unknown. Church of St. Mary of the Spring Life-giving Spring List of Byzantine emperors Ostrogorsky, George. History of the Byzantine State. Oxford: Basil Blackwell. Bury, John Bagnell. History of the Later Roman Empire: from the death of Theodosius I to the death of Justinian.
Dover books. 1. Dover Publications. ISBN 978-0-486-20398-0. Friell, Gerard; the Rome That Did Not Fall: The Survival of the East in the Fifth Century. Ancient history. London: Taylor & Francis. ISBN 978-0-415-15403-1. Meyendorff, John. Imperial unity and Christian divisions: The Church 450-680 A. D; the Church in history. 2. Crestwood, NY: St. Vladimir's Seminary Press. ISBN 978-0-88-141056-3. Thomas F. Madden. Empire of Gold: A History of the Byzantine Empire. Prince Frederick: Recorded Books. ISBN 978-1-4281-3267-2. Profile of Leo in The Prosopography of the Later Roman Empire Stephen Williams, Gerard Friell, The Rome that Did Not Fall The Survival of the East in the Fifth Century, Routledge Press, 1999, ISBN 0-415-15403-0 Media related to Flavius Valerius Leo at Wikimedia Commons Leo I Timeline