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Attila – leader of Huns

This post is also available in: Polish (polski)

Eugène Delacroix, Attila
Eugène Delacroix, Attila. The image does not reflect the correct armament and appearance of the Huns.

Attila – the leader of Huns, one of the most important figures in the history of the late-antique world. Together with his brother Bleda, he inherited power from his uncle – Ruas. In the year 445 CE killed his brother while hunting, allegedly mistaking him for a bear. He then became the independent ruler of the Hunnic Empire. In the 40s of the 5th century, the Eastern Roman Empire paid Attila several thousand pounds of gold of various kinds of tribute and tribute.

He also prepared an attack on the Western Empire, but on June 30, 451, he lost at Catalaunian Fields (near Troyes). It was one of the greatest battles in European history. After this defeat, he returned to the east, attacking northern Italy the following year. after which he returned to Pannonia. There he married the young Ildico. Attila died suddenly on his wedding night. The cause of death is listed as homicide, excess alcohol, or natural causes. Jordanes argues that Attila died when he was too zealously fulfilling his marital duties. He was so excited that his nose was bleeding. The king, falling under the influence of alcohol and rapture on the bed, was to fall asleep and then suffocate with his own blood. Jordanes concludes his description of Attila’s death with the words: “thus did drunkenness put a disgraceful end to a king renowned in war”1.

  1. Jordanes, The Origin and Deeds of the Goths, XLIX
  • Michel Rouche, Attyla i Hunowie. Ekspansja barbarzyńskich nomadów, Warszawa 2011

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