Fectio, Late Roman re-enactment society

What's New I Sitemap I Bibliography I Vortigern Studies l POLLS I LINKS l Games I Sitemaster
Vortigern I Wansdyke I Arthurian Collection I View Guestbook I Sign Guestbook l Webrings

Vortigern Studies > Fectio > Articles > Timeline 250-550 AD > 501-550 AD

Fectio Index



click here

Late Roman Timeline
501 AD - 550 AD

By Robert Vermaat

Late Roman Timeline 250-550 AD

Emperor* Reigned Consuls Year Events
Anastasius 491-518 Avieno et Pompeius 501 year
    Avieno et Probo 502 War begins with the Persians, after Kavadh has subjugated Armenia with the aid of the Eastern or Hephtalite Huns.
The Bulgars defeat a Roman army.
    Volusiano et Dexicrates 503 The Persians take Theodosiopolis (Erzerum) and Amida (Diyarbekir).
No western consul.
504 Anastasius gathers an army of 15.000 Goths under Hypatius and Aerobindus (the great-grandson of Aspar) against the Persians.
Theodoric sacks Singidunum (Belgrade) and occupies Sirmium (Sremska Mitrovica) after the death of the Gepid king Thraustila.
    Theodoro et Sabiniano 505 The magister officiorum Celer invades Persia and reaches Ctesiphon. An invasion by the Western Huns across the Caucasus brings an armistice.
The Gothic comes Pitzias heavily defeats an army of Anastasius' Bulgarian federates.
    Messala et Aerobindus 506 Anastasius signs a 7-year truce with the Persians.
Clovis wins the second battle of Tolbiacum (Zülpich) and crushes the Alamanni, who subsequently have to seek refuge with the Ostrogoths.
    (Anastasius and) Venantio 507 Clovis, together with Rhine Franks under Chloderic, the Armoricans, as well as a large contingent of Gallo-Romans from the Auvergne under Apollinaris, defeats the Visigoths under Alaric II at Vouillé, near the 10th milestone outside Pictavia (Poitiers). Alaric is killed but his son Amalaric (still a child) manages to escape to Spain. His half-brother Gesalec rules the Visigoths for the next 4 years. Clovis sends his son Theuderic to capture all the territory along the Burgundian border up to Clermont-Ferrand, while he captures Burdigala (Bordeaux).
Anastasius sends his fleet to plunder to coast of southern Italy.
    Venantio Basilio (and Celer) 508 Having wintered in Burdigala (Bordeaux), Clovis goes on to capture Tolosa (Toulouse) together with Alaric's royal treasure. Clovis establishes his capital at Parisiense (Paris). He is made a consul by Anastasius.
    Anastasio et Inportuno
No western consul.
509 Sigibert the Lame, king of the Rhine Franks, is killed by his son Chloderic. Clovis then has Chloderic killed and the Rhine Franks recognise his rule. Later Clovis also kills the Frankish kings of Camerasensis (Cambriai) and Cenomanense (Le Mans), bringing all Frankish territories under his rule.
No western consul.
510 Death of Aelle of Sussex.
Death of Oisc of Kent.
    Felice (and Secundinus) 511 Death of Clovis (November 11), after which his territory is divided amongst his sons, creating the two kingdoms of Neustria; consisting of the regions Remensis (Reims) and Aureliani (Orléans) and Austrasia; consisting of the regions Parisiensis (Paris) and Noviodunum (Soissons).
Theuderic inherited Remensis (Reims) and Metense (Metz), Chlodomer inherited the kingdom of Noviodunum (Soissons), Childebert inherited the kingdom of Parisiensis (Paris) and Clotaire the town of Noviodunum (Soissons) and the Lower Meuse region.
The Visigoth king Gesalec is driven from the throne by a certain Ibbas. He flees to Africa but fails to secure aid from the Vandals, or later from the Osthrogoths. When Gesales invades from Gaul he is defeated and killed. Amalric is not yet of age (9) and Theodoric becomes regent of the Visigoths, ruling though his agent Theudis.
    Paulo et Musciano 512 During a religious uprising in Constantinople, the mob elects the former general and consul) Dagalaihus Aerobindus (great-grandson of Aspar and married to great-granddaughter of Theodosius II) as emperor, but Aerobindus declines, goes into hiding and saves the position of Anastasius.
Eruption of Mt. Vesuvius.
    Probo et Clementio 513 Rebellion of Vitalianus, grandson of Aspar and the Gothic comes foederatorum in Thrace and magister militum per Thracias, who supports the decrees of Chalcedon (Anastasius is a Monophysite). His rebellion is supported by the regular diocesan army, the barbarian federates and the local peasants, but also receives support from Theodoric. In protest against the dismal state of food supplies, a 60.000-men strong army besieges Constantinople. Anastatsius complies, but sends two armies after Vitalianus, who defeats both.
    Senatore (Cassiodorus)
No western consul.
514 Vitalianus again besieges Constantinople, this time with an army and a fleet. Anastasius again gives in and makes him magister militum per Thracias.
    Florentio et Antemio 515 After Anastasius again fails to fulfill his promises, Vitalianus besieges Constantinople for a third time. First use of Greek Fire against the ships of Vitalianus in the defence of Constantinople. Vitalianus is defeated in Thrace and goes into hiding in the Dobrudja area.
No western consul.
516 Death of Gundobad, king of the Burgundians former magister militum praesentalis and later magister militum Galliarum. He is succeeded by his son Sigismund, who is made a patricius by Anastatsius.
    Agapito (and Pompeius) 517 The Bulgars raid as far as Thermopylae.
Justin 518-27 (Paulus, Moschianus and Magnus)
No western consul.
518 Death of Anastasius (night of July 8) at the age of 88. Flavius Justinus, commander of the 300-strong elite guard unit, the excubitores, is put forward by the court officials, and elected emperor (July 9) at age 65 with support of the senate and the city garrisson. Justin ends the feud with Vitalianus (both are Orthodox) and promotes him to consul and magister militum.
    Eutaricus et Cillica 519 Caradoc or Cerdic becomes king of the Gewissae (later known as the West Saxons).
    Rusticio et Vitaliano 520 Vitalianus is assassinated on orders of Justin.
    Iustinianus et Valerius 521 year
    Symmacho et Boetio
No eastern consul.
522 Amalric is proclaimed king of the Visigoths.
No western consul.
523 Death of Thrasamund, king of the Vandals (May 6). He is succeeded by Hilderic, who is then probably 60 years old, a son of Huneric and Eudocia. Berber raiders sack Leptis Magna (Al Khums).
The Frankish kings invade the Burgundian kingdom and capture their king Sigismund.
    Iustinus et Opilio 524 The Burgundian king Sigismund is defeated, flees to a monastery but is captured and assassinated by Chlodomer, who also kills his sons (May 1). Sigismund's younger brother Godomar returns to Burgundy and defeats the Franks with the help of Ostrogothic troops. The Frankish troops in Burgundy are massacred. The Franks then lead a second expedition into Burgundy and defeat the Burgundians and Ostrogoths at the battle of Veseruntia (Vézeronce) on June 21, where king Chlodomer is killed. His children are killed by their uncle Clotaire and Chlodomer's kingdom is divided among his brothers. Childebert annexes Carnutum (Chartres) and Aureliani (Orléans), Clotaire Turonensis (Tours) and Pictavia (Poitiers). Godomar rules Burgundy under Frankish threat.
    Probus et Filoxenus 525 The Persians move against Iberia, which is conquered despite a small army sent by Justin.
The city of Edessa (Urfa) is almost destroyed by a flood.
    Olybrio 526 Death of Theodoric the Great, king of the Ostrogoths (August 30). He is succeeded by his 10-year old grandson Athalaric, under guardianship of his mother Amalasuntha.
The Franks defeat the Alamanni and occupy their territory.
The generals Sittas and Belisarius lead armies into Persian Armenia.
An earthquake kills maybe 300.000 in Antioch and Syria (May 19th).
Justinian 527-65 Mavortio
No eastern consul.
527 When Justin falls ill, his nephew Flavius Petrus Sabbatius Iustinianus (Justinian) is elevated to co-emperor (April 4). Death of Justin (August 1) at age 74.
The Ostrogoths besiege Vitage and cut the aquaduct to Rome.
Cerdic and his son Cynric are defeated by a British army near Cerdicesleaga (unidentified).
    (Justinianus, Leonius (hon.) and Phocas (hon.))
No western consul.
528 Justinian conquers the Crimea peninsula with a combined land and naval expedition.
No western consul.
529 Justinian subdues a revolt by the (much-repressed) Samaritans in which 20.000 Samaritans are killed.
    Lampadio et Oreste 530 Hilderic, king of the Alans and Vandals, is deposed and imprisoned by his cousin Gelimer.
At the battle of Dara, Belisarius defeats the Sassanid Persians under Firouz.
Cerdic and his son Cynric take control of the island Wight.
    No eastern or western consul. 531 Belisarius is defeated by the Sassanid Persians under Spahbod Azarethes at the battle of Callinicum (April 19). Belisarius is recalled and replaced by Mundus as magister militum per Orientem. The magister militum per Armeniam Dorotheus defeats the Persians near Martyropolis (Silvan).
Sabir Huns raid south of the Caucasus.
Khavadh I dies (September) and is succeeded by his son
Khosrau I Anushirvan 'the just' (Chosroes) as king of the Sassanid Persians.
The Frankish kings Clotaire and Theuderic move east of the Rhine and conquer Thuringia. Childebert invades Visigothic territory in rescue of his sister Chrotilda. He defeats her husband Amalric in battle at Narbo (Narbonne), after which Amalric retreats to Faventia (Barcelona), where he is murdered by his own troops. He is succeeded by his former guardian
Theudis, a former commander of Theoderic the Great.
    No eastern or western consul. 532 Serious rioting (Nika-revolt) in Constantinople by the two main circus factions (January 11-18). The riots turn into a rebellion when the aristocracy forces Justinian to name Hypatius (a nephew of Anastasius) emperor. Justinian is saved by the magister militius per Orientem Belisarius and the magister militum per Illyrium Mundus, who quell the rebellion with a few loyal troops, killing 30-40.000 people.
The Frankish king Childebert besieges Augustodunum (Autun).
No western consul.
533 Justinian buys a peace (known as the 'Endless Peace') from the Persians.
Justinian then sends Belisarius with a large army to Africa in order to conquer the Vandal kingdom (June 21). At the battle of Ad Decimum (´at the tenth´ [milestone]), Belisarius is almost defeated by Gelimer, but manages to secure the victory after Gelimer's brother Ammatas falls (September 14). Carthage is taken the next day. Gelimer is joined by his brother Tzazo at Bulla Regia and secures the aid of the Mauretanians. He then confronts Belisarius a second time, but is defeated at the battle of Tricamarum (December 15). Tzazo falls and Gelimer escapes, while Belisarius captures many Vandal civilians and the royal treasure. In the same year, his forces conquer the Balearic isles and the narrows of Gibraltar.
    (Justinianus and) Paulino 534 Gelimer flees to the mountains but surrenders to Belisarius at last at Mount Papua (March). He is pensioned off to live in Galatia with his family. End of the Vandal kingdom. Many Vandal troops are recruited for the Roman army. The Romans fortify Septem (Ceuta) in April.
The Ostrogothic king Athalaric dies of alcohol abuse at age 18 (October 2). His mother Amalasuntha marries her cousin
Theohadad, who succceeds Athalaric.
Death of the Frankish king Theuderic of Metense (Metz), he is succeeded by his son
The Frankish kings Childebert and Clotaire invade Burgundy and kill the Burgundian king Godomar. They divide large parts of Burgundy amongst themselves. End of the Burgundian kingdom.
Death of Cerdic of Wessex, he is succeeded by either his son
Creoda or Cynwrig (Cynric).
No more consuls in the West.
535 Amalasuntha, queen of the Ostrogoths, is murdered by Theohadad who smothers her in her bath (April 30). Justinian uses this pretext to invade Italy. Belisarius occupies Sicily, Mundus occupies Illyrium. To secure their help, Witigis cedes the Provence to the Franks.
    No eastern consul. 536 Stotzas rebels in Africa. Belisarius defeats the rebels outside Carthage, then moves on to Sicily. Germanus is then sent to Africa and defeats Stotzas at a place called Scala Veteres.
Belisarius lands in Italy, marches north and conquers Naples, despite a defense of the city by the (much repressed) Jewish population. Belisarius' troops then massacre the inhabitants, Goths and Italians alike. After that he marches north and enters Rome without opposition (December 9 or 10). Theohadad tries to negotiate, but the Ostrogoths depose him and elect
Witigis in his place as 'king of the Goths and Italians'. Witigis marries Mataswintha (granddaughter of Theodoric) and recalls the Gothic forces from southern Gaul (which is afterwards occupied by the Franks).
    No eastern consul. 537 The Frankish kings Childebert and Clotaire occupy the Provence.
The Ostrogoths under Witigis besiege Rome (February 21) for a year, without much success in their attempts at siege warfare.
    Iohanne 538 After almost a year, Rome is relieved by a Roman army under Narses (Winter), and the Ostrogoths raise the siege. Belisarius moves north and seizes Milan and Ariminium (Rimini), which is then besieged by the Ostrogoths.
    Appione 539 Witigis is supported by the Frankish king Theudebert, who sends 10.000 Burgundians to support him. With their aid, the Ostrogoths besiege Milan (then in size the second city after Rome) and starve the inhabitants. After negotiations the Ostrogoths allow the garisson to depart, after which they massacre all male inhabitants and give the females and children as slaves to their Burgundian allies. The Ostrogoths then pull down the walls. Justinian sends Narses with a relief force to Italy. When Belisarius forces the Goths north, they retreat across the Po river and cede the rest of Italy to Justinian. Belisarius besieges Witigis in Ravenna. The Franks retreat from Italy when disease decimates their army.
Justinian limits all production of weapons to state-owned fabricae.
    Iustino 540 After the food supply is destroyed by fire, Ravenna falls. Belisarius captures Witigis, together with the Ostrogothic treasure. The Ostrogoths elect Hildebad as their king. Belisarius leaves Italy. Witigis is pensioned off, his Gothic troops that are captured are enlisted into the Roman army.
Chosroes breaks the peace with Justinian and invades Syria. He captures many cities including Antioch, which is destroyed.
    Basilio 541 Hildebad is murdered shortly afterwards, and the Rugian Eraric is elected. Eraric is in turn assassinated by Baduila (Totila), who becomes king of the Ostrogoths. Totila builds a fleet and marches south. He defeats three Roman generals at Mucellium (Mugello) because the Roman forces panic.
The Visigothic king Theudis defeats the combined Frankish forces of Childebert I and Chlothar I, who have invaded Spain and besieges Caesaraugusta (Zaragoza) for 90 days. His general Theudegisel defeats the Franks in the valley of Lazaide/Valcarlos, but allows them to bribe their way out.
The Sassanid king Chosroes campaigns into the Caucasus and captures Petra, the most important fortress in Lazica.
The Roman Empire is hit by the
'Justinianic' plague which rages from 541 to 543, killing at its peak up to 5.000 citizens of Constantinople each day (and maybe 40% of the inhabitants) and by its end in 590 an estimated 100 million across the world.
    No more consuls in the East. 542 Totila occupies most of southern Italy, defeating a Roman army at Faventia..
The Frankish kings Childebert and Clotaire invade the Visigothic kindom, capturing Pompaelo (Pamplona) and besieging Caesaraugusta (Zaragosa), but are forced to retrerat.
Plague in the eastern provinces.
      543 Totila occupies Neapolis (Naples) and marches on Rome.
In Africa, the Moors begin a rebellion.
      544 Belisarius returns to Italy, but with only few reinforcements. Totila takes the town of Tibur (Tivoli) and in a hideous massacre the Goths kill all inhabitants.
The plague reaches Constantinople.
      545 War in Italy between Totila and Belisarius. Totila attacks Rome, but the Romans relieve Auximus.
In Africa, Guntharis rebels but is defeated by Artabanes.
When the Frankish king Theudebert marries the Lombard queen Wisigarde, the Eastern Alps come under the control of the Franks.
A five-year truce is signed between Chosroes and Justinian.
      546 Justinian leaves Pannonia to the Lombards.
Totila defeats a Roman army outside Rome and another outside Portus. Finally he conquers Rome (December 17). Belisarius retreats from the city, which is partly burned down by the Ostrogoths, who destroy a third of the 12-mile long walls. Totila has captured most of the city's population and resettles them in Campania, leaving the city totally emptied of people for at least 40 days, after which the remaining population may have numbered as low as 500.
      547 The Ostrogoths leave Rome, after which the battered city is again occupied by Roman forces.
Totila scatters a Roman army in Lucania after attacking them at night, before surprising and defeating a cavalry force at Ruscianum (Rossano).
      548 Totila blockades Ruscianum (Rossano) and defeats Belisarius' comitatus in battle.
Death of empress Theodora, wife of Justinian (June 28).
The Visigothic king Theudis is assassinated by his general
Death of the Frankish king Theudebert of Metense (Metz), he is succeeded by his son
In Africa, the Moors are defeated.
      549 Theudegisel is in turn assassinated at a banquet in Hispalis (Seville). He is succeeded by Agila.
Totila defeats a Roman army near Salona and besieges Rome. Belisarius is recalled without ever having achieved a major victory.
      550 Justinian names Germanus ruler of Gaul and marries him to Witigis' widow Mataswintha. Germanus travels to Italy, defeating a Slav invasion of the Balkans while en route, but then falls ill and dies before reaching Italy.
After the Isaurian garisson does not receive their pay, they open the gates of Rome to the Ostrogoths and the battered city switches hands again. Totila invades Sicily, but Artabanes retakes the island.
Bessas besieges Petra in Lazica.

Back to Timeline home

VortigernStudies is copyright © Robert Vermaat 1999-2010. All rights reserved