Byzantine Emperor, Eastern Orthodox Saint. He was born in 396 AD and spent his early life as a soldier, taking part in the wars against the Persians and Vandals. In 431 AD he was taken prisoner by the Vandals and was only released on condition that he swore never to wage war against them. He was later raised to the position of tribune and senator; on the death of Theodosius II in 450 AD he was made Emperor at the behest of the late ruler's sister, Pulcheria, who also made him her consort. He immediately halted the payment of tribute to Attila the Hun, thus leaving the Western Roman Empire open to attack. He reformed the financial system, stopped extravagant spending, repopulated devastated areas and repelled attacks on the Eastern Empire. Remembering his earlier oath, he stood by while the Vandals sacked Rome in 455 AD, and is famous as the Emperor who finally abandoned the Western Empire to the Barbarians. He died in 457 AD, possibly of gangrene, and was declared a saint by the Eastern Orthodox Church. His feast day is February 17th.
Bio by: js