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Sample text

In Britain, independence was asserted as early as , although, as the Saxon threat grew, some seem to have regretted the decision and wrote to Aetius (probably in ) requesting his assistance (Gildas ). Likewise, in northern, and particularly north-western, Gaul, many of the groups labelled bagaudae should probably be understood as representing a similar kind of phenomenon, rather than, as has sometimes been argued, outright peasant Refs. . Refs. –. Cf. Procop. –; the troops demanded ‘one-third of the lands of Italy’; what this means is debated: p.

The year  thus saw the interesting, if confusing, spectacle of a western emperor employing Goths to attack part of the Roman army in Gaul. When battle was joined at Orleans, Aegidius was victorious. His revolt was only contained in the autumn of , when he was assassinated. At the time, he was engaged in negotiations with the Vandal king Geiseric, trying to construct an alternative balance of western forces to challenge Ricimer’s domination. Severus’ regime also failed to win eastern approval; he was never recognized by the emperor Leo.

His army was composed of Roman regulars and a series of detachments from allied peoples. Of these, the most important was Gothic, under the command of their king, Theoderic I. Jordanes also mentions the presence of Franks, Saxons and Burgundians (Get. ). The western authorities, it seems, had been expecting an invasion of Italy, and Aetius had had to work extremely hard to make the Goths take the field. Attila’s diplomatic manoeuvrings had nearly worked. On Aetius’ appearance, Attila retreated towards the Champagne, where battle was joined on the so-called Catalaunian Plains (or campus Mauriacus) in late June or early July.

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A history of the peolpes of Siberia by James Forsyth


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