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Attila the Hun
Birth: unknown
Death: unknown

Hunnic King. He is possibly one of the most well-known and feared barbarian leaders of all time, so much that the Romans nicknamed him "The Scourge of God". In his youth, the Huns comprised a group of nomadic people living to the east of the Volga river in separate tribes. Rua, Attila's uncle, united them under his sole kingship around 432. In 434, Attila and his brother Bleda inherited leadership, with Blea having seniority. In 445, Bleda died on a hunting trip, although some said Attila arranged for his brother's murder. He became sole ruler of the Huns and began making plans to invade the Eastern Roman Empire. He succeeded in extorting money from the Byzantines, but his invasion was foiled by Constantinople's walls. With this, the Hun king turned to the Western Empire. His invasion of Gaul was a huge undertaking, and the cruelty the Huns were known for was not undeserved. A city in a Roman Danube province called Naissus was virtually erased from the earth. When Roman ambassadors came to meet the Hun king several years later, they had to camp on the river outside the city, as the stench was too foul and the banks were covered with human bones. Attila had other reasons for invading the West, however. Honoria, Emperor Valentinian's sister, had been discovered in 449 in an affair with her steward. The unfortunate lover was executed, and Honoria, who was probably pregnant, was kept in seclusion. In a rage she had a ring and a message smuggled to the King of the Huns and asked Attila to become her champion. He treated this as a marriage proposal and asked for half of the Western Empire as her dowry. After massive preparations, Attila invaded the Rhine with a large army of Huns and allied barbarian tribes. In his force was a sizable body of Ostrogoths and other Germanic warriors, including Burgundians and Alans who lived on the barbarian side of the frontier. The Franks were split between pro- and anti-Roman factions. As early as April he took Metz, and fear swept through Gaul. Ancient accounts give figures that range between 300,000 and 700,000 for the army of the Huns. Some of the most powerful cities in Europe were nearly wiped off the face of the earth: Reims, Cologne and others fell, and Paris was only spared because of the ministrations of St. Genvieve. Finally, things came to a head at the Catalaunian Fields on September 20th, 451. Three opponents fought Attila and his Ostrogothic and Frankish allies: The Romans under General Aetius, the Visigoths under Theodorid, and the Alans under Sangiban, who were only there because the Romans had forced them to be. Ancient figures for the battle put the amount of dead at anywhere between 165,000 to 300,000 dead. Attila retreated to resupply, but by the next year, Aetius had retired and Theodorid was dead. Attila invaded Italy, intent on capturing Rome. He devastated Milan, Padua, and Verona, but the city of Aquileia at the tip of the Adriatic was wiped off the face of the earth. The citizens that fled into the marshes would later found the republic of Venice. When Attila reached Rome, he was met by Pope Leo I, who had a private meeting with him. None know what the Pope said to him, but the Hun king retreated from Italy, on the brink of his greatest triumph. In 453, he took a new bride, Ildico. The wedding day was spent in heavy drinking and partying, and the King of the Huns took his new bride to bed that night in drunken lust. The next morning it was discovered that he had died - Drowned in his own nosebleed. For a man who had said "Where my horse has trodden, no grass grows.", it was a curiously anti-climactic passing. He was buried in secret; and the commoners that had buried him were murdered so that the location would never leave their lips. Without his brilliant leadership, Attila's great empire fell apart within only a year, his quarreling and unimpressive sons were easily defeated by the revolting Ostrogoths and Franks, and the Huns left Europe defeated, scattered to the winds of history. (bio by: Mongoose) 
Specifically: Body buried in secret
Maintained by: Find A Grave
Originally Created by: Mongoose
Record added: Dec 18, 2003
Find A Grave Memorial# 8193051
Attila the Hun
Added by: Mongoose
Attila the Hun
Added by: Mongoose
Attila the Hun
Added by: Mongoose
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