Europe 430: Death of Flavius Felix

Political map of Europe & the Mediterranean on 10 May 430 (Theodosian Dynasty: Fall of Africa: Death of Flavius Felix), showing the following events: Vandal invasion of Diocese of Africa; Germanus of Auxerre in Britain; Juthungi invasion of Raetia; First Suebian–Roman War; Anaolsus; Death of Flavius Felix.

The disastrous civil war with Bonifatius which had allowed for the Vandal invasion of Africa in 429 was popularly blamed on the intrigues of the influential but militarily ungifted general Flavius Felix. In 430 Felix’s own troops mutinied and killed him in Ravenna, leaving Felix’s rival Aetius as the most powerful Roman general in Western Europe.

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Akatziri and the “Scythian Kingdom” (Kuban Huns)

Little is known about the region north and east of the Black Sea in the first half of the fifth century, except that in c. 400 a “Scythian King” (almost always assumed to be a Hun) lived in the Kuban region and by the 440s a Hunnic people known as the Akatziri lived east of the Dniester. Although fragmented, the Akatziri were powerful enough that, when the Eastern Romans aligned with all but one of their kingdoms in 447, it took over a year for Attila’s armies to crush them and install his son as their king. After this, Attila contemplated invading Persia, implying that suppressing the Akatziri had bought the periphery of his empire close to the Caucasus. All this suggests that the Akatziri may have extended into the North Caucasus and that the “Scythian King” may have been part of the Akatziri, although this is of course conjecture.

Main Events

429 Vandal invasion of Diocese of Africa

In mid 429 Gaiseric led his followers—mostly Vandals and Alans, but also Goths and other peoples—east along the African coast from Tingitana, using his ships to help support his movements. By August the Vandals seem to have entered the Diocese of Africa, where they proceeded to ravage the countryside and sack a number of cities, before arriving on the outskirts of Hippo Regius late in the year. Here they were met by Darius, envoy of the Western Roman empress dowager Galla Placidia, who managed to negotiate a truce with the invaders, temporarily halting their advance. in wikipedia

429–430 Germanus of Auxerre in Britain

In 429 Pope Celestine I dispatched the bishops Germanus of Auxerre and Lupus of Troyes to Britain to combat the heresy of Pelagianism, which was allegedly rife in the island. Upon arrival, the two bishops defeated the Pelagians through public debate and thereby once again secured the influence of the Roman Catholic faith among the Britons. They then traveled west, where Germanus helped defeat an incursion by the Picts and Scoti shortly after Easter 430, before returning to Gaul. in wikipedia

430 Juthungi invasion of Raetia

In 430 the Juthungi appeared in the northern Praetorian Prefecture of Italy, probably in the region of Raetia. It is possible that they had fled across the Upper Danube to escape from the Huns; alternatively they may have been resettled foederati rejecting Roman rule. in wikipedia

430 First Suebian–Roman War

In early 430 the Suebi under King Hermeric marched into central Gallaecia and began pillaging Roman settlements there. After taking refuge in the more strongly fortified towns, the local people rallied and, in a counteroffensive, killed and captured many of the invaders. Temporarily cowed, the Suebi returned to their assigned lands and renewed their treaty with Rome. in wikipedia

430 Anaolsus

In early 430 a large party of Visigoths advanced on Arelate (Arles) but were utterly defeated by Aetius, who captured their leader Anaulf (known as Anaolsus in Latin). It is uncertain as to whether Anaulf was a rogue chief or secretly under orders of the Visigothic king Theoderic to test Roman defenses after the Vandal invasion of Africa. This battle was one of the last acts of Aetius in Gaul in 430, as by May that year he had moved to Italy. in wikipedia

May 430 Death of Flavius Felix

In May 430 the influential general and patrician Flavius Felix, his wife Padusia, and a deacon named Grunitus were killed in Ravenna in a mutiny of Felix’s own troops. The murder had allegedly been orchestrated by the magister militum Aetius on the pretense that Felix was plotting against him, but it may also have been the case that the empress dowager Galla Placidia had lost patience with Felix for his role in inciting the civil war of 427–29 with Bonifatius. Whatever the reason, the elimination of Felix made Aetius the most powerful Roman general in Western Europe. in wikipedia