Adolphus (Ataulf), rey de los visigodos (c.355 - 415) MP

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Nicknames: "Athaulf /Visigoths/", "Atualphus /Chief/", "Ataulfo", "Adulphus", "Adolphus"
Birthplace: Dacia (Present Romania)
Death: Died in Barcino (Present Barcelona), Tarraconensis (Present Catalonia), Hispaniae (Present Spain)
Cause of death: Assassinated by a follower of his deceased rival Sarus "of daring spirit, but diminutive stature, whose secret desire of revenging the death of his beloved patron was continually irritated by the sarcasms of his insolent master"
Occupation: King of the Visigoths (410-415), King of the Visigoths, rei, Roi des Wisigoths (410-415)
Managed by: Jocelynn Oakes
Last Updated:

About Adolphus (Ataulf), rey de los visigodos

De la página de español Wikipedia en Ataulfo:

http://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ata%C3%BAlfo

Ataúlfo (en gótico: Athal Wolf 'lobo noble'), nacido en ¿372?, fue rey de los visigodos del 410 al 415. Hijo de Atanarico II, de la dinastía baltinga, fue nombrado rey al estilo germano (sobre la tumba de su antecesor) a la muerte de su primo y cuñado Alarico I.

Biografía

Del 410 al 412 prácticamente no se conoce nada, lo único que se sabe es que cuando fue coronado ya tenía la idea de destruir por completo el Imperio romano y fundar un Imperio Gótico. Al principio intentó seguramente pasar a África como su predecesor, pero al resultarle imposible, optó por emigrar con sus gentes de la península Itálica y dirigirse a las Galias.

En el mismo 412 entra en contacto con el emperador Honorio y firma un tratado de alianza, por el cual Roma se compromete a dar provisión (annona) y la cesión de tierra en la Galia a cambio de devolver a su hermana Gala Placidia. Este fue el comienzo de la organización de los visigodos como reino y Estado permanentes, a lo que contribuyó Ataúlfo en gran medida. Se le puede considerar como el verdadero fundador del poder político de los visigodos. Pero Ataúlfo no cumplió el tratado al no devolver a la rehén, y en otoño de 413 intenta invadir la zona de Marsella. Al no conseguirlo, se desplazó hacia Narbona, Toulouse y Burdeos, es decir, las regiones llamadas Galia Narbonense y Aquitania, donde se instala provisionalmente. Desde estos territorios, los visigodos no tenían acceso al mar, pues las costas seguían estando en poder de los romanos.

En enero de 414 se casa por sorpresa con Gala Placidia (según rito romano) en Narbona, aunque el historiador Jordanes indica que se casaron en el 411 en el foro Livii (Forli). La fecha de Jordanes puede referirse realmente al inicio del romance entre ella y el rey godo, pues algunos historiadores afirman que hubo más amor que política en dicha unión.

La boda produjo la ira en Honorio, que reaccionó enfurecido. Ataúlfo —en una maniobra estratégica— simula abdicar en Prisco Atalo, al que nombra Emperador de los visigodos, pero Honorio se da cuenta de la artimaña y le corta los víveres provenientes de los puertos bajo su poder, lo que le obliga a principios de 415 a abandonar la Galia en dirección a Hispania, cinco años después de que lo hicieran los suevos, vándalos y alanos, y en Barcino (Barcelona) instala su corte. En ella nacerá el hijo que tuvo con Gala Placidia, llamado Teodosio, con el que pretendía unir a los godos con los romanos, pero desgraciadamente el niño morirá meses después. En esta época sigue una política de entendimiento y acercamiento con Roma, lo que le produce enemistades en su séquito.

A principios del verano de 415 es asesinado por Dubio, una persona de su confianza que le traiciona. No se sabe exactamente quién fue el responsable del regicidio, pero varios pretendientes intentan subir al poder. Walia, hermano del fallecido, consigue el respaldo de la mayoría de la asamblea, pero Sigerico se levantó en rebeldía desplazando sus aspiraciones.

Estatua idealizada de Ataúlfo, que forma parte de una serie de estatuas dedicadas a todos los monarcas de España, mandadas hacer para la decoración del Palacio Real de Madrid en el reinado de Fernando VI.[1]

Notas

1. ↑ En un principio, la idea era que adornasen la cornisa del palacio. Los autores son Juan Domingo Olivieri y Felipe de Castro. Parece ser que nunca llegaron a su destino y se colocaron en distintos lugares de la ciudad (plaza de Oriente, El Retiro, puerta de Toledo) y algunas se llevaron a otras provincias.

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In English:

Ataúlfo (in Gothic : Athala Wolf 'noble wolf'), born in 372?, was king of the Visigoths from 410 to 415 . Son of Athanaric II , of the Balti dynasty, he was named king in the style of the Germans (on the grave of his predecessor) at the death of his brother-in-law Alaric .

Biography

From 410 to 412 virtually nothing is known of him; all that is known of him is that when he was crowned, he had wanted to destroy the entire Roman Empire and establish a Gothic Empire in its place. At first he tried to cross to Africa as had his predecessor, but finding this impossible, he decided to lead his people from the Italian peninsula and go to the land of the Gauls .

Also in 412, he made contact with the Emperor Honorius and signed a treaty of alliance, of which Rome committed to provision of food and the transfer of land in Gaul in exchange for returning his sister Galla Placidia. This was the start of the Kingdom of the Visigoths as a permanent government, to which Ataúlfo contributed greatly. He can be considered as the real founder of the political power of the Visigoths.

However, Ataúlfo did not complied with the treaty and failed to return his hostage (Galla Placidia), and in the autumn of 413 he invaded the area of Marseille . When they failed to take that city, the Visigoths moved on to Narbonne , Toulouse, and Bordeaux , i.e., regions called Gaul, Narbonne, and Aquitaine, where he settled temporarily. From these lands, the Visigoths had no access to sea, because the coasts were still held by the Romans.

In January 414, in a surprise move, he married Galla Placidia (under Roman Rite) in Narbonne , although the historian Jordanes states that were married in 411 in Livii forum ( Forli ). The date of Jordanes may actually refer to the beginning of the romance between her and the Gothic king, as some historians claim that there was more love than politics in the union.

The wedding angered Honorius, who reacted strongly. Ataúlfo pretended, in a strategic move, to abdicate in favor of Priscus Attalus, who then became emperor of the Visigoths, but Honorius understood the trick and cut off the supplies from the ports under his power. This forced the Visigoth leader in early 415 to leave Gaul for Hispania, five years after the Swabians, Vandals, and Alans, and at Barcino (Barcelona) he established his court. He fathered a son by Galla Placidia called Theodosius, with whom he sought to unite the Goths against the Romans, but unfortunately the child died months later. After this, he pursued a policy of understanding and rapprochement with Rome, which created enemies in his own entourage.

In early summer 415, he was killed by treachery, by a person in whom he had placed his trust. It is not known exactly who was responsible for the regicide, but several suitors afterward attempted to rise to power. Walia , brother of the deceased, received the support of the majority of the assembly, but Sigerico rose in rebellion, delaying Walia's aspirations.

Ataúlfo was commemorated in a statue that was part of a series dedicated to all the monarchs of Spain, as commissioned to decorate the Royal Palace during the reign of Ferdinand VI. [1]

Notes

1. ↑ At first, the idea was that adorn the cornice of the palace. The sculptors were Juan Domingo Olivieri and Felipe de Castro . It seems that they never reached their goal and their statues were placed in different parts of the city (Plaza de Oriente, El Retiro, Puerta de Toledo) and some were taken to other provinces.

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Enlaces externos

Wikimedia Commons alberga contenido multimedia sobre Ataúlfo.

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Category:Ata%C3%BAlfo?uselang=es

  • Nacimiento ¿372?
  • Consorte
  • 1) ¿?
  • 2) Gala Placidia
  • Descendencia: Con 2) Teodosio
  • Dinastía Baltinga
  • Padre Atanarico II
  • Rey de los visigodos (410 – 415)
  • Predecesor: Alarico I
  • Sucesor: Sigérico

(No sources provided, especially for the assertion that Ataulf was the son of Atanarico, I or II)

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From the English Wikipedia page on Ataulf:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ataulf

Ataulf (sometimes Athavulf [1], Atawulf [2], or Athaulf — "noble wolf" — Latinized as Ataulphus) was king of the Visigoths from 410 to 415. The modern historian of the Goths, Herwig Wolfram, summarizes the last seven years of his life, the only ones that we can follow: "within that period he developed from a tribal chief to a late antique statesman."[3]

Life

He was unanimously elected to the throne to succeed his brother-in-law Alaric, who had been struck down by a fever suddenly in Calabria. King Ataulf's first act was to halt Alaric's southward expansion of the Goths in Italy.

Meanwhile, Gaul had been separated from the western Roman Empire by the usurper Constantine III. So in 411 Constantius, the magister militium (master of military) of the western emperor, Flavius Augustus Honorius, with Gothic auxiliaries under Ulfilas, crushed the Gallic rebellion with a siege of Arles. There Constantine and his son were offered an honorable capitulation— but were beheaded in September on their way to pay homage to Honorius at Ravenna.

In the spring of 412 Constantius pressed Ataulf. Taking the advice of Priscus Attalus—the former emperor whom Alaric had set up at Rome in opposition to Honorius at Ravenna, and who had remained with the Visigoths after he'd been deposed—Ataulf led his followers out of Italy. Moving north into a momentarily pacified Gaul, the Visigoths lived off the countryside in the usual way. Ataulf may have received some additional encouragement in the form of payments in gold from the Emperor Honorius—since Ataulf carried with him as a respected hostage the emperor's half-sister Galla Placidia, who had long been his captive.

Once in Gaul, Ataulf opened negotiations with a new usurper, the Gallic Jovinus. But when the latter ended up instead preferring Sarus, Ataulf's blood enemy among the Gothic nobles, Ataulf broke negotiations off and attacked and killed Sarus. Jovinus then named his brother Sebastianus (Sebastian) as Augustus (co-emperor). This further offended Ataulf, who hadn't been consulted. So he allied his Visigoths with Honorius.

Jovinus' troops were defeated in battle, Sebastianus was captured, and Jovinus fled for his life. Ataulf then turned Sebastianus over for execution to Honorius' Gallic praetorian prefect (provincial governor), Postumus Dardanus. After this, Ataulf besieged and captured Jovinus at Valentia (Valence) in 413, sending him to Narbo (Narbonne), where he was executed by Dardanus.

After the heads of Sebastianus and Jovinus arrived at Honorius' court in Ravenna in late August, to be forwarded for display among other usurpers on the walls of Carthage, relations between Ataulf and Honorius improved sufficiently for Ataulf to cement them by marrying Galla Placidia at Narbo in early 414. The nuptials were celebrated with high Roman festivities and magnificent gifts from the Gothic booty. Priscus Attalus gave the wedding speech, a classical epithalamium. Under Ataulf's rule, the Visigoths couldn't be said to be masters of a settled kingdom until Ataulf took possession of Narbonne and Toulouse in 413. Still, the Visigoths sustained an uneasy client relationship with the western empire.

Although Ataulf remained an Arian Christian, his relationship with Roman culture was summed up, from a Catholic Roman perspective, by the words that the contemporary Christian apologist Orosius put into his mouth, Ataulf's Declaration:

"At first I wanted to erase the Roman name and convert all Roman territory into a Gothic empire: I longed for Romania to become Gothia, and Athaulf to be what Caesar Augustus had been. But long experience has taught me that the ungoverned wildness of the Goths will never submit to laws, and that without law a state is not a state. Therefore I have more prudently chosen the different glory of reviving the Roman name with Gothic vigour, and I hope to be acknowledged by posterity as the initiator of a Roman restoration, since it is impossible for me to alter the character of this Empire."[4]

Honorius's general Constantius (who would later become Emperor Constantius III), poisoned official relations with Ataulf and gained permission to blockade the Mediterranean ports of Gaul. In reply, Ataulf acclaimed Priscus Attalus as Augustus in Bordeaux in 414. But Constantius' naval blockade was successful and, in 415, Ataulf withdrew with his people into northern Hispania. Attalus fled, fell into the hands of Constantius, and came to a bad end.

Galla Placidia traveled with Ataulf. The infant son, Theodosius, she bore him died in infancy and was buried in Hispania in a silver-plated coffin [1], thus eliminating an opportunity for a Romano-Visigothic line. In Hispania, Ataulf imprudently accepted into his service one of the late Sarus' followers, unaware that the man harbored a secret desire to avenge the death of his beloved patron. And so, in the palace at Barcelona, the man brought Ataulf's reign to a sudden end by killing him while he bathed.

Sigeric, the brother of Sarus, immediately became king—for a mere seven days, when he was also murdered and succeeded by Wallia. Under the latter's reign, Galla Placidia was returned to Ravenna where, in 417, at the urging of Honorius, she remarried, her new husband being the implacable enemy of the Goths, Constantius. The main sources for the career of Ataulf are Paulus Orosius, the chronicles of the Gallaecian bishop Hydatius, and those of Augustine's disciple, Prosper of Aquitaine.

Ataulf's declaration

The authenticity of Ataulf's declaration at Narbonne, as Orosius reported it in a rhetorical history that was explicitly written "against pagans" (it was completed in 417/18) has been doubted. Antonio Marchetta[5] concludes that the words are indeed Ataulf's and distinguishes them from their interpretation by Orosius, who was preparing his readers for a conclusion that Christian times were felicitous and who attributed Ataulf's apparent change of heart to the power of his love for Galla Placidia, the instrument of divine intervention in God's plan for an eternal Roman Empire. Marchetta finds the marriage instead an act of hard-headed politics.

Notes and references

1. ^ Patrick J. Geary, ed., Readings in Medieval History (Ontario: Broadview Press Ltd., 2003), 97.

2. ^ Henry Bradley, The Goths: from the Earliest Times to the End of the Gothic Dominion in Spain (New York: G.P. Putnam's Sons, Second edition, 1883), chapter 11.

3. ^ Wolfram, History of the Goths (1979, tr. 1988) p. 164.

4. ^ Orosius, Historiae adversum paganos (vii.43.4-6), translated in Stephen Williams, Diocletian and the Roman Recovery, Routledge, 1985, 2000, p. 218)

5. ^ Antonio Marchetta, Orosio e Ataulfo nell'ideologia dei rapporti romano-barbarici (Rome: Istituto Isorico per il Medio Evo) 1987. The first chapter deals with the doubts raised by previous historians as to the authenticity of the discourse.

External links

1. Wikisource has the text of the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica article Ataulphus.

http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/1911_Encyclop%C3%A6dia_Britannica/Ataulphus

2. De Imperatoribus Romanis: Hugh Elton, "Western Roman Emperors of the First Quarter of the Fifth Century"

http://www.roman-emperors.org/westemp5.htm

3. Septimane Wisigothique: "D'où venaient les Wisigoths?" (in French, link no longer functions)

Edward Gibbon, History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, chapter 31

http://ebooks.adelaide.edu.au/g/gibbon/edward/g43d/chapter31.html

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From the Foundation for Medieval Genealogy page on Toulouse:

http://fmg.ac/Projects/MedLands/TOULOUSE.htm#_Toc225040392

(On Ataulf's inlaws): Brother and sister, parents not known.

ALARIC (-Bruttium, southern Italy end 410).

First mentioned in 391 when he moved southwards into Greece, he suffered several military setbacks but succeeded in resettling the Goths in Macedonia[18]. He was elected in 395 as ALARIC King of the Visigoths.

He entered the western part of the Roman Empire in 401, and by the end of the year had attacked Venetia and was threatening Milan. Alaric was defeated by the Romans in 402 at Pollenza, and in 403 at Verona, after which the Goths abandoned Italy and settled in Dalmatia and Pannonia[19].

King Alaric returned to Italy in 408, the Goths' attacks culminating in the sack of Rome in Aug 410[20]. Procopius records that Alaric died from illness[21].

m ---. The name(s) of King Alaric's wife or wives is not known.

King Alaric had children, including a daughter who married Theoderic I King of the Visigoths.

Alaric's sister: m ([410]) as his --- wife, ATAULF, son of --- (-murdered Barcelona 416). He succeeded his brother-in-law in 410 as ATAULF King of the Visigoths.

---


(On Ataulf/Adolphus' birth family) Two brothers, parents not known.

1. ATAULF, son of --- (-murdered Barcelona [Aug/Sep] 416).

Iordanes names "Ataulfo" as "eius [Alaricus rex Vesegotharum] consanguineo" but does not specify the precise relationship[23]. He is first mentioned in 408 in relation to a military campaign in upper Pannonia[24].

He succeeded his brother-in-law in 410 as ATAULF King of the Visigoths. Procopius records that Ataulf succeeded on the death of Alaric[25].

The Chronica Regum Visigotthorum records that the Goths left Italy during the reign of “Ataulphus” and occupied “Gallias, ac postea Hispanias”, adding that Ataulf reigned for six years[26]. He led his people out of Italy and established his court at Narbonne[27].

He crossed the Pyrenees into Spain from the Visigoth base in Toulouse with a small army, charged by the enfeebled Roman State in Hispania with expelling the Vandal invaders from the south and the Suevi from the north west[28]. They occupied Barcelona in 414[29].

He was assassinated by Dubius or Eberwolf in revenge for the earlier killing of Sarus, the brother of Ataulf's successor Sigeric[30]. The Chronicon of Bishop Idatius records that “Ataulfus” was murdered at Barcelona “per quemdam Gothum…inter familiars fabulas” in 416[31].

m firstly ---. The name of Ataulf's first wife is not known.

m secondly ([410]) --- of the Visigoths, sister of ALARIC King of the Visigoths, daughter of ---.

m thirdly (Narbonne 1 Jan 414) as her first husband, GALLA PLACIDIA, daughter of Emperor THEODOSIUS I & his second wife Galla ([388/early May 394][32]-27 Nov 450).

Iordanes names "Placidiam" as the daughter of Emperor Theodosius & his second wife, recording in a later passage that she was captured by "Halaricus rex Vesegotharum" when he attacked Rome and later married his successor "Atauulfo"[33]. The Chronicle of Marcellinus also records that "Placidia Honorii principis sorore" was abducted by "Halaricus" and later married "Athaulfo propinquo suo"[34].

Captured by Alaric King of the Visigoths during the sack of Rome in Aug 409, she passed to Ataulf on his accession as king[35].

The Chronicon of Bishop Idatius records that “Ataulfus” married “Placidiam” at Narbonne in 414[36].

Her first husband married her after failing to establish an alliance with Emperor Honorius[37].

As part of the peace negotiated by King Walia with the Romans in 416, Galla Placidia was returned to her brother Honorius in early 416[38]. The Chronicon Albeldense names “Ballia” as successor of “Sigericus”, adding that he made peace with Emperor Honorius and returned his sister Placidia to him[39].

She married secondly (1 Jan 417) Flavius Constantius, who succeeded in 421 as Emperor CONSTANTIUS III. Iordanes records that Placidia was created "Augustam" and her son Valentinian "Cæsar" to lead the opposition to Iohannes who invaded the western empire[40].

The Chronicon of Bishop Idatius records the death in 450 of “Valentiniani Imperatoris mater Placidia…apud Romam”[41].

King Ataulf & his first wife had six children[42]:

a) six children (-murdered Barcelona [Aug/Sep] 415). Sigesar, Bishop of the Goths, tried in vain to protect these children after their father's death[43].

King Ataulf & his third wife had one child:

b) THEODOSIUS (Barcelona end 414-Barcelona before Aug 415).

2. brother . Designated by King Ataulf as his successor, but displaced by Sigeric[44].

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References:

[18] Wolfram, H. (1998) History Of The Goths (Berkeley, California), pp. 136-143.

[19] Wolfram (1998), pp. 150-53, and García-Guijarro (2002), p. 6.

[20] Wolfram (1998), pp. 156-59.

[21] Dindorf, W. (ed.) (1833) Procopius, Vol. 1, Corpus Scriptorum Historiæ Byzantinæ (Bonn), De Bello Persico III.3, p. 318.

[22] Wolfram (1998), p. 174.

[23] Iordanes Getarum, MGH Auct. ant. V.1, p. 99.

[24] Wolfram (1998), p. 165.

[25] Dindorf, W. (ed.) (1833) Procopius, Vol. 1, Corpus Scriptorum Historiæ Byzantinæ (Bonn), De Bello Persico III.3, p. 318.

[26] Chronica Regum Visigotthorum, España Sagrada Tomo II, p. 172.

[27] Wolfram (1998), pp. 161-3.

[28] Payne, S. G. (1973) A History of Spain and Portugal, Volume 1 - Antiquity to the Seventeenth Century (University of Wisconsin Press), in the Library of Iberian Resources Online, consulted at http://libro.uca.edu/payne1/spainport1.htm (15 Dec 2002), Chapter 1, p. 8.

[29] Atkinson, W. C. (1960) A History of Spain and Portugal (Penguin 1973), p. 37.

[30] Wolfram (1998), p. 165.

[31] Idatii Episcopi Chronicon, España Sagrada III, p. 354.

[32] The two dates being those of her parents' marriage and her mother's death in childbirth.

[33] Iordanes Romanorum, MGH Auct. ant. V.1, pp. 40 and 41.

[34] Marcellini v. c. comitis Chronicon 410, MGH Auct. ant. XI, p. 70.

[35] Zosso, F. and Zingg, C. (1995) Les Empereurs Romains (Editions Errance, Paris), p. 186.

[36] Idatii Episcopi Chronicon, España Sagrada III, p. 353.

[37] Wood, I. (1994) The Merovingian Kingdoms (Longman), p. 7.

[38] Iordanes Romanorum, MGH Auct. ant. V.1, p. 42.

[39] Chronicon Albeldense 17, Patrologia Latina Vol. 129, col. 1133C.

[40] Iordanes Romanorum, MGH Auct. ant. V.1, p. 42.

[41] Idatii Episcopi Chronicon, España Sagrada III, p. 367.

[42] Wolfram (1998), p. 442, footnote 302.

[43] Wolfram (1998), p. 455, footnote 190.

[44] Wolfram (1998), p. 166.

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The details of Adolphus' part in the 409 invasion and his reign as King of the Visigoths are given in Edward Gibbon's "Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire":

http://www.ccel.org/g/gibbon/decline/volume1/chap31.htm#adol

His army, enriched by the contributions of the capital, slowly advanced into the fair and fruitful province of Tuscany, where he proposed to establish his winter-quarters (in 409); and the Gothic standard became the refuge of 40,000 barbarian slaves, who had broke their chains, and aspired, under the command of their great deliverer, to revenge the injuries and the disgrace of their cruel servitude. About the same time he received a more honourable reinforcement of Goths and Huns, whom Adolphus,(80) the brother of his wife, had conducted, at his pressing invitation, from the banks of the Danube to those of the Tiber, and who had cut their way, with some difficulty and loss, through the superior numbers of the Imperial troops. A victorious leader, who united the daring spirit of a barbarian with the art and discipline of a Roman general, was at the head of an hundred thousand fighting men; and Italy pronounced with terror and respect the formidable name of Alaric.(81)

Footnotes:

80. This Gothic chieftain is called, by Jornandes and Isidore, Athaulphus; by Zosimus and Orosius, Ataulphus; and by Olympiodorus, Adaoulphus. I have used the celebrated name of Adolphus, which seems to be authorised by the practice of the Swedes, the sons or brothers of the ancient Goths.

81. The treaty between Alaric and the Romans etc., is taken from Zosimus, 1. v. [c. 41, sqq.] p. 354, 355, 358, 359, 362, 363. The additional circumstances are too few and trifling to require any other quotation.

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These impending calamities were however averted, not indeed by the wisdom of Honorius, but by the prudence or humanity of the Gothic king, who employed a milder, though not less effectual, method of conquest. Instead of assaulting the capital he successfully directed his efforts against the Port of Ostia, one of the boldest and most stupendous works of Roman magnificence. (88) The accidents to which the precarious subsistence of the city was continually exposed in a winter navigation and an open road had suggested to the genius of the first Caesar the useful design which was executed under the reign of Claudius. The artificial moles which formed the narrow entrance advanced far into the sea, and firmly repelled the fury of the waves, while the largest vessels securely rode at anchor within three deep and capacious basins which received the northern branch of the Tiber about two miles from the ancient colony of Ostia. (89) The Roman Port insensibly swelled to the size of an episcopal city,(90) where the corn of Africa was deposited in spacious granaries for the use of the capital.

As soon as Alaric was in possession of that important place he summoned the city to surrender at discretion and his demands were enforced by the positive declaration that a refusal, or even a delay, should be instantly followed by the destruction of the magazines on which the life of the Roman people depended. The clamours of that people and the terror of famine subdued the pride of the senate; they listened without reluctance to the proposal of placing a new emperor on the throne of the unworthy Honorius; and the suffrage of the Gothic conqueror bestowed the purple on Attalus, praefect of the city. The grateful monarch immediately acknowledged his protector as master-general of the armies of the West; Adolphus, with the rank of count of the domestics, obtained the custody of the person of Attalus; and the two hostile nations seemed to be united in the closest bands of friendship and alliance.(91)

Footnotes:

88. See Sueton. in Claud. c. 20; Dion Cassius, 1. lx. [c. 11] p. 949, edit. Reimar; and the lively description of Juvenal, Satir. xii. 75, etc. In the sixteenth century, when the remains of this Augustan port were still visible, the antiquarians sketched the plan (see D'Anville, Mem. de l'Academie des Inscriptions, tom. xxx. p. 198), and declared with enthusiasm that all the monarchs of Europe would be unable to execute so great a work (Bergier, Hist. des Grands Chemins des Romains, tom. ii. p. 356).

89. The Ostia Tiberina (see Cluver. Italia Antiq. 1. iii. p. 870-879), in the plural number, the two mouths of the Tiber, were separated by the Holy Island, an equilateral triangle, whose sides were each of them computed at about two miles. The colony of Ostia was founded immediately beyond the left, or southern, and the Port immediately beyond the right, or northern, branch of the river; and the distance between their remains measures something more than two miles on Cingolani's map. In the time of Strabo the sand and mud deposited by the Tiber had choked the harbour of Ostia; the progress of the same cause has added much to the size of the Holy Island, and gradually left both Ostia and the Port at a considerable distance from the shore. The dry channels (fiumi morti) and the large estuaries (stagno di Ponente, di Levante) mark the changes of the river and the efforts of the sea. Consult, for the present state of this dreary and desolate tract, the excellent map of the ecclesiastical state by the mathematicians of Benedict XIV.; an actual survey of the Agro Romano, in six sheets, by Cingolani, which contains 113,819 rubbia (about 570,000 acres); and the large topographical map of Ameti, in eight sheets.

90. As early as the third (Lardner's.Credibility of the Gospel, part ii. vol. iii. p. 89-92), or at least the fourth century (Carol. a Sancto Paulo, Notit. Eccles. p. 47), the Port of Rome was an episcopal city, which was demolished, as it should seem, in the ninth century, by pope Gregory IV., during the incursions of the Arabs. It is now reduced to an inn, a church, and the house or palace of the bishop, who ranks as one of six cardinal bishops of the Roman church. See Eschinard, Descrizione di Roma et dell' Agro Romano, p. 328.

91. For the elevation of Attalus, consult Zosirnus, l. vi. [c. 6, 7] p. 377-380; Sozomen,1. ix. c. 89; Olympiodor. ap. Phot. p. 180, 181 [p. 57, ed. Bekk.]; Philostorg. 1. xii. c. 3, and Godefroy, Dissertat. p. 470.

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Third siege and sack of Rome by the Goths, A.D. 410, August 24.

The degradation of Attalus removed the only real obstacle to the conclusion of the peace, and Alaric advanced within three miles of Ravenna to press the irresolution of the Imperial ministers, whose insolence soon returned with the return of fortune. His indignation was kindled by the report that a rival chieftain, that Sarus, the personal enemy of Adolphus, and the hereditary foe of the house of Balti, had been received into the palace.

At the head of 300 followers that fearless barbarian (Sarus) immediately sallied from the gates of Ravenna, surprised and cut in pieces a considerable body of Goths, re-entered the city in triumph, and was permitted to insult his adversary by the voice of a herald, who publicly declared that the guilt of Alaric had for ever excluded him from the friendship and alliance of the emperor.(97)

The crime and folly of the court of Ravenna was expiated a third time by the calamities of Rome. The king of the Goths, who no longer dissembled his appetite for plunder and revenge, appeared in arms under the walls of the capital; and the trembling senate, without any hopes of relief, prepared by a desperate resistance to delay the ruin of their country. But they were unable to guard against the secret conspiracy of their slaves and domestics, who either from birth or interest were attached to the cause of the enemy. At the hour of midnight the Salarian gate was silently opened, and the inhabitants were awakened by the tremendous sound of the Gothic trumpet. Eleven hundred and sixty-three years after the foundation of Rome, the Imperial city, which had subdued and civilised so considerable a part of mankind, was delivered to the licentious fury of the tribes of Germany and Scythia.(98)

Footnotes:

97. Zosimus, l. vi. [c. 13] p. 384. Sozomen, l. ix c. 9. Philostorgius. l. xii. c. 3. In this place the text of Zosimus is mutilated, and we have lost the remainder of his sixth and last book, which ended with the sack of Rome. Credulous and partial as he is, we must take our leave of that historian with some regret.

98. Adest Alaricus, trepidam Romam obsidet, turbat, irrumpit. Orosius, 1. vii. c. 39, p. 573. He despatches this great event in seven words; but he employs whole pages in celebrating the devotion of the Goths. I have extracted from an improbable story of Procopius the circumstances which had an air of probability. Procop. de Bell. Vandal. l. i. c. 2 [tom. i. p. 315, ed. Bonn]. He supposes that the city was surprised while the senators slept in the afternoon; but Jerom, with more authority and more reason, affirms that it was in the night, nocte Moab capta est; nocte cecidit murus ejus, tom. i. p. 121, ad Principiam [Epist. cxxvii. c. 12, tom. i. p. 953, ed. Vallars ]

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The brave Adolphus, the brother-in-law of the deceased monarch (Alaric) was unanimously elected to succeed to his throne. The character and political system of the new king of the Goths may be best understood from his own conversation with an illustrious citizen of Narbonne, who afterwards, in a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, related it to St Jerom, in the presence of the historian Orosius.

"In the full confidence of valour and victory, I once aspired (said Adolphus) to change the face of the universe; to obliterate the name of Rome; to erect on its ruins the dominion of the Goths; and to acquire, like Augustus, the immortal fame of the founder of a new empire. By repeated experiments I was gradually convinced that laws are essentially necessary to maintain and regulate a well constituted state; and that the fierce untractable humour of the Goths was incapable of bearing the salutary yoke of laws and civil government. From that moment I proposed to myself a different object of glory and ambition; and it is now my sincere wish that the gratitude of future ages should acknowledge the merit of a stranger, who employed the sword of the Goths, not to subvert, but to restore and maintain, the prosperity of the Roman empire."(130)

With these pacific views the successor of Alaric suspended the operations of war, and seriously negotiated with the Imperial court a treaty of friendship and alliance. It was the interest of the ministers of Honorius, who were now released from the obligation of their extravagant oath, to deliver Italy from the intolerable weight of the Gothic powers; and they readily accepted their service against the tyrants and barbarians who infested the provinces beyond the Alps. (131)

Adolphus, assuming the character of a Roman General, directed his march from the extremity of Campania to the southern provinces of Gaul. His troops, either by force or agreement, immediately occupied the cities of Narbonne, Toulouse, and Bordeaux; and though they were repulsed by Count Boniface from the walls of Marseilles, they soon extended their quarters from the Mediterranean to the ocean. The oppressed provincials might exclaim that the miserable remnant which the enemy had spared was cruelly ravished by their pretended allies; yet some specious colours were not wanting to palliate or justify the violence of the Goths. The cities of Gaul which they attacked might perhaps be considered as in a state of rebellion against the government of Honorius: the articles of the treaty or the secret instructions of the court might sometimes be alleged in favour of the seeming usurpations of Adolphus; and the guilt of any irregular unsuccessful act of hostility might always be imputed, with an appearance of truth, to the ungovernable spirit of a barbarian host impatient of peace or discipline. The luxury of Italy had been less effectual to soften the temper than to relax the courage of the Goths; and they had imbibed the vices, without imitating the arts and institutions, of civilised society.(132)

His marriage with Placidia, A.D. 414

The professions of Adolphus were probably sincere, and his attachment to the cause of the republic was secured by the ascendant which a Roman princess had acquired over the heart and understanding of the barbarian king. Placidia,(133) the daughter of the great Theodosius, and of Galla, his second wife, had received a royal education in the palace of Constantinople; but the eventful story of her life is connected with the revolutions which agitated the Western empire under the reign of her brother Honorius.

When Rome was first invested by the arms of Alaric, Placidia, who was then about 20 years of age, resided in the city; and her ready consent of the death of her cousin Serena has a cruel and ungrateful appearance, which, according to the circumstances of the action, may be aggravated or excused by the consideration of her tender age. (134) The victorious barbarians detained, either as a hostage or a captive,(135) the sister of Honorius; but while she was exposed to the disgrace of following round Italy the motions of a Gothic camp, she experienced, however, a decent and respectful treatment. The authority of Jornandes, who praises the beauty of Placidia, may perhaps be counterbalanced by the silence, the expressive silence, of her flatterers: yet the splendour of her birth, the bloom of youth, the elegance of manners, and the dexterous insinuations which she condescended to employ, made a deep impression on the mind of Adolphus; and the Gothic king aspired to call himself the brother of the emperor.

The ministers of Honorius rejected with disdain the proposal of an alliance so injurious to every sentiment of Roman pride; and repeatedly urged the restitution of Placidia as an indispensable condition of the treaty of peace. But the daughter of Theodosius submitted without reluctance to the desires of the conqueror, a young and valiant prince, who yielded to Alaric in loftiness of stature, but who excelled in the more attractive qualities of grace and beauty.

The marriage of Adolphus and Placidia (136) was consummated before the Goths retired from Italy; and the solemn, perhaps the anniversary, day of their nuptials was afterwards celebrated in the house of Ingenuus, one of the most illustrious citizens of Narbonne in Gaul. The bride, attired and adorned like a Roman empress, was placed on a throne of state; and the king of the Goths, who assumed on this occasion the Roman habit, contented himself with a less honourable seat by her side.

The nuptial gift, which, according to the custom of his nation,(137) was offered to Placidia, consisted of the rare and magnificent spoils of her country. Fifty beautiful youths, in silken robes, carried a basin in each hand; and one of these basins was filled with pieces of gold, the other with precious stones of an inestimable value. Attalus, so long the sport of fortune and of the Goths, was appointed to lead the chorus of the Hymeneal song; and the degraded emperor might aspire to the praise of a skilful musician. The barbarians enjoyed the insolence of their triumph; and the provincials rejoiced in this alliance, which tempered, by the mild influence of love and reason, the fierce spirit of their Gothic lord.(138)

130. Orosius, l. vii. c. 43, p. 584, 585. He was sent by St. Augustin, in the year 415, from Africa to Palestine, to visit St. Jerom and to consult with him on the subject of Pelagian controversy.

131. Jornandes supposes, without much probability, that Adolphus visited and plundered Rome a second time (more locustarum erasit). Yet he agrees with Orosius in supposing that a treaty of peace was concluded between the Gothic prince and Honorius. See Oros. l. vii. c. 43, p. 584, 585. Jornandes, de Reb. Geticisi c. 31, p. 654, 655 [p. 88, ed. Lugd. B.].

132. The retreat of the Goths from Italy and their first transactions in Gaul are dark and doubtful. I have derived much assistance from Mascou (Hist. of the Ancient Germans, l. viii. c. 29, 35, 36, 37), who has illustrated and connected the broken chronicles and fragments of the times.

133. See an account of Placidia in Ducange, Fam. Byzant. p. 72, and Tillemont, Hist. des Empereurs, tom. v. p. 260, 386, etc., tom. vi. p. 240.

134. Zosim. l. v. [c. 38] p. 350.

135. Zosirn. l. vi. [c. 12] p. 383. Orosius ( l vii. c. 40, p. 567) and the Chronicles of Marcellinus and Idatius seem to suppose that the Goths did not carry away Placidia till after the last siege of Rome.

136. See the pictures of Adolphus and Placidia, and the account of their marriage, in Jornandes, de Reb. Geticis, c. 31, p. 654, 655 [p. 88, ed. Lugd. B.] With regard to the place where the nuptials were stipulated, or consummated, or celebrated, the MSS. of Jornandes vary between two neighbouring cities Forli and Imola (Forum Livii and Forum Cornelii). It is fair and easy to reconcile the Gothic historian with Olympiodorus (see Mascou, 1. viii. c. 36): but Tillemont grows peevish, and swears that it is not worth while to try to conciliate Jornandes with any good authors.

137. The Visigoths (the subjects of Adolphus) restrained, by subsequent laws, the prodigality of conjugal love. It was illegal for a husband to make any gift or settlement for the benefit of his wife during the first year of their marriage; and his liberality could not at any time exceed the tenth part of his property. The Lombards were somewhat more indulgent: they allowed the morgingcap immediately after the wedding night; and this famous gift, the reward of virginity, might equal the fourth part of the husband's substance. Some cautious maidens, indeed, were wise enough to stipulate beforehand a present which they were too sure of not deserving. See Montesquieu, The Spirit of Laws, l. xix. c. 25. Muratori, delle Antichita Italiane, tom. i. Dissertazione xx. p. 243.

138. We owe the curious detail of this nuptial feast to the historian Olympiodorus, ap. Photium, p. 185, 188 [p. 59, ed. Bekk.].

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Before Constantine resigned the purple, and in the fourth month of the siege of Arles, intelligence was received in the Imperial camp that Jovinus had assumed the diadem at Mentz, in the Upper Germany, at the instigation of Goar, king of the Alani, and of Guntiarius, king of the Burgundians; and that the candidate on whom they had bestowed the empire advanced with a formidable host of barbarians from the banks of the Rhine to those of the Rhone. Every circumstance is dark and extraordinary in the short history of the reign of Jovinus. It was natural to expect that a brave and skilful general, at the head of a victorius army, would have asserted, in a field of battle, the justice of the cause of Honorius. The hasty retreat of Constantius might be justified by weighty reasons; but he resigned without a struggle the possession of Gaul; and Dardanus, the Praetorian praefect, is recorded as the only magistrate who refused to yield obedience to the usurper.(153)

When the Goths, two years after the siege of Rome, established their quarters in Gaul, it was natural to suppose that their inclinations could be divided only between the emperor Honorius, with whom they had formed a recent alliance, and the degraded Attalus, whom they reserved in their camp for the occasional purpose of acting the part of a musician or a monarch. Yet in a moment of disgust (for which it is not easy to assign a cause or a date) Adolphus connected himself with the usurper of Gaul; and imposed on Attalus the ignominious task of negotiating the treaty which ratified his own disgrace.

We are again surprised to read, that, instead of considering the Gothic alliance as the firmest support of his throne, Jovinus upbraided, in dark and ambiguous language, the officious importunity of Attalus; that, scorning the advice of his great ally, he invested with the purple his brother Sebastian; and that he most imprudently accepted the service of Sarus, when that gallant chief, the soldier of Honorius, was provoked to desert the court of a prince who knew not how to reward or punish.

Adolphus, educated among a race of warriors, who esteemed the duty of revenge as the most precious and sacred portion of their inheritance, advanced with a body of 10,000 Goths to encounter the hereditary enemy of the house of Balti. He attacked Sarus at an unguarded moment, when he was accompanied only by 18 or 20 of his valiant followers. United by friendship, animated by despair, but at length oppressed by multitudes, this band of heroes deserved the esteem, without exciting the compassion, of their enemies; and the lion was no sooner taken in the toils (154) than he was instantly despatched.

The death of Sarus dissolved the loose alliance which Adolphus still maintained with the usurpers of Gaul. He again listened to the dictates of love and prudence; and soon satisfied the brother of Placidia, by the assurance that he would immediately transmit to the palace of Ravenna the heads of the two tyrants, Jovinus and Sebastian. The king of the Goths executed his promise without difficulty or delay: the helpless brothers, unsupported by any personal merit, were abandoned by their barbarian auxiliaries; and the short opposition of Valentia was expiated by the ruin of one of the oldest cities of Gaul.

Footnotes:

153. Sidonius Apollinaris (1. v. Epist. 9, p. 139, and Not. Sirmond. p. 58), after stigmatising the inconstancy of Constantine, the facility of Jovinus the perfidy of Gerontius, continues to observe that all the vices of these tyrants were united in the person of Dardanus. Yet the praefect supported a respectable character in the world, and even in the church; held a devout correspondence with St. Augustin and St. Jerom; and was complimented by the latter (tom. iii. p. 66) with the epithets of Christianorum Nobilissime and Nobilium Christianissime.

154. The expression may be understood almost literally: Olympiodorus says, (Greek words) may signify a sack or a loose garment; and this method of entangling and catching an enemy, laciniis contortis, was much practised by the Huns (Ammian. xxxi. 2). II fut pris vif avec des filets, is the translation of Tillemont, Hist. des Empereurs, tom. v. p. 608.

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Adolphus, king of the Goths, marches into Spain, A.D. 414

The important present of the heads of Jovinus and Sebastian had approved the friendship of Adolphus and restored Gaul to the obedience of his brother Honorius. Peace was incompatible with the situation and temper of the king of the Goths. He readily accepted the proposal of turning his victorious arms against the barbarians of Spain; the troops of Constantius intercepted his communication with the seaports of Gaul, and gently pressed his march towards the Pyrenees:(159) he passed the mountains, and surprised, in the name of the emperor, the city of Barcelona.

The fondness of Adolphus for his Roman bride was not abated by time or possession; and the birth of a son, surnamed, from his illustrious grandsire, Theodosius, appeared to fix him for ever in the interest of the public. The loss of that infant, whose remains were deposited in a silver coffin in one of the churches near Barcelona, afflicted his parents; but the grief of the Gothic king was suspended by the labours of the field; and the course of his victories was soon interrupted by domestic treason. He had imprudently received into his service one of the followers of Sarus, a barbarian of a daring spirit, but of a diminutive stature, whose secret desire of revenging the death of his beloved patron was continually irritated by the sarcasms of his insolent master.

His death, A.D. 415, August Adolphus was assassinated in the palace of Barcelona; the laws of the succession were violated by a tumultuous faction;(160) and a stranger to the royal race, Singeric, the brother of Sarus himself, was seated on the Gothic throne.

The first act of his reign was the inhuman murder of the six children of Adolphus, the issue of a former marriage, whom he tore, without pity, from the feeble arms of a venerable bishop. (161)

The unfortunate Placidia, instead of the respectful compassion which she might have excited in the most savage breasts, was treated with cruel and wanton insult. The daughter of the emperor Theodosius, confounded among a crowd of vulgar captives, was compelled to march on foot above 12 miles, before the horse of a barbarian, the assassin of an husband whom Placidia loved and lamented.(162)

Footnotes:

159. This mixture of force and persuasion may be fairly inferred from comparing Orosius and Jornandes, the Roman and the Gothic historian.

160. According to the system of Jornandes (c. 33, p. 659 [ed. Grot.]), the true hereditary right to the Gothic sceptre was vested in the Amali; but those princes, who were the vassals of the Huns commanded the tribes of the Ostrogoths in some distant parts of Germany or Scythia.

161. The murder is related by Olympiodorus; but the number of the children is taken from an epitaph of suspected authority.

162. The death of Adolphus was celebrated at Constantinople with illuminations and Circensian games. (See Chron. Alexandrin.) It may seem doubtful whether the Greeks were actuated on this occasion by their hatred of the barbarians or of the Latins.

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From the Foundation for Medieval Genealogy page on Vandals, Suevi, Visigoths:

http://fmg.ac/Projects/MedLands/VANDALS,%20SUEVI,%20VISIGOTHS.htm#GensericA

Chapter 3. KINGS of the VISIGOTHS in SPAIN 531-711


The Goths originally lived north of the Danube. According to their legend, they migrated to the Black Sea area from the island of Scandza in the Baltic Sea[119]. They separated into two tribal groups, the Visigoths to the west and the Ostrogoths to the east. Under pressure from the Huns, they sought permission from the Roman Emperor Valens to move into the Roman empire to the south of the river Danube in 376. The inevitable conflicts culminated in 378, when the Goths defeated the Romans at Adrianople and killed the emperor.

Following this, the Visigoths drifted westwards through the Balkans and Italy, finally settling in south-west France around Toulouse[120]. The Chronicon of Bishop Idatius records that the Goths entered Narbonne in 413[121].

Visigothic expansion into Spain was slow, starting with the small army led by Ataulf in 415. The main body of Visigoths arrived in Spain during the reign of Alaric II in the late fifth century, possibly encouraged by increased attacks by the Franks on Visigothic lands in France.

The Visigoths were expelled from France in 531, and established their new capital at Barcelona. Amalric King of the Visigoths led the move to Barcelona, but he was murdered soon after by his cousin Teudis who succeeded as king of the Visigoths in Spain.

References:

[119] Iordanes Getarum, MGH Auct. ant. V.1, in particular p. 77.

[120] García-Guijarro (2002), p. 6.

[121] Idatii Episcopi Chronicon, España Sagrada III, p. 353.

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From "Vol I File 5: The Paternal Ancestry of Homer Beers James" (personal research, no sources cited):

http://homepages.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~pmcbride/james/f005.htm#T17

Amfleda the Younger was descended as follows:

1. Adulphus, King of the Goths in Spain, was brother of Alaric who conquered Rome in 410, and who as a Christian convert forbade his men to destroy churches. Dying in 411, Alaric was buried with a vast treasure in the bed of the River Busento. Adulphus had two daughters as follows:

  • 1. Theodora. See below as the mother of Amfleda the Elder.
  • 2. Eurica.

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From the Absolute Astronomy page for Ataulf:

http://www.absoluteastronomy.com/topics/Ataulf

Ataulf (sometimes Athavulf , Atawulf , or Athaulf — "noble wolf" — Latinized as Ataulphus or Adolphus; in Spanish, Portuguese and Galician Ataúlfo) was king of the Visigoths from 410 to 415. The modern historian of the Goths, Herwig Wolfram, summarizes the last seven years of his life, the only ones that we can follow: "within that period he developed from a tribal chief to a late antique statesman."

He was unanimously elected to the throne to succeed his brother-in-law Alaric, who had been struck down by a fever suddenly in Calabria.

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Discussion: Unanswered Questions (as of 12 December 2010):

Is there any record of the lineage of Ataulf? I read in one article that his first marriage produced six children that were all killed. It further stated that by his third marriage he had children that survived. Is there an account of what became of them?

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Ataulf (sometimes Athavulf , Atawulf , or Athaulf — "noble wolf" — Latinized as Ataulphus or Adolphus; in Spanish, Portuguese and Galician Ataúlfo) was king of the Visigoths from 410 to 415. The modern historian of the Goths, Herwig Wolfram, summarizes the last seven years of his life, the only ones that we can follow: "within that period he developed from a tribal chief to a late antique statesman."

Life

He was unanimously elected to the throne to succeed his brother-in-law Alaric, who had been struck down by a fever suddenly in Calabria. King Ataulf's first act was to halt Alaric's southward expansion of the Goths in Italy.

Meanwhile, Gaul had been separated from the western Roman Empire by the usurper Constantine III. So in 411 Constantius, the magister militium (master of military) of the western emperor, Flavius Augustus Honorius, with Gothic auxiliaries under Ulfilas, crushed the Gallic rebellion with a siege of Arles. There Constantine and his son were offered an honorable capitulation— but were beheaded in September on their way to pay homage to Honorius at Ravenna.

In the spring of 412 Constantius pressed Ataulf. Taking the advice of Priscus Attalus—the former emperor whom Alaric had set up at Rome in opposition to Honorius at Ravenna, and who had remained with the Visigoths after he'd been deposed—Ataulf led his followers out of Italy. Moving north into a momentarily pacified Gaul, the Visigoths lived off the countryside in the usual way. Ataulf may have received some additional encouragement in the form of payments in gold from the Emperor Honorius—since Ataulf carried with him as a respected hostage the emperor's half-sister Galla Placidia, who had long been his captive.

Once in Gaul, Ataulf opened negotiations with a new usurper, the Gallic Jovinus. But when the latter ended up instead preferring Sarus, Ataulf's blood enemy among the Gothic nobles, Ataulf broke negotiations off and attacked and killed Sarus. Jovinus then named his brother Sebastianus (Sebastian) as Augustus (co-emperor). This further offended Ataulf, who hadn't been consulted. So he allied his Visigoths with Honorius. Jovinus' troops were defeated in battle, Sebastianus was captured, and Jovinus fled for his life. Ataulf then turned Sebastianus over for execution to Honorius' Gallic praetorian prefect (provincial governor), Postumus Dardanus. After this, Ataulf besieged and captured Jovinus at Valentia (Valence) in 413, sending him to Narbo (Narbonne), where he was executed by Dardanus.

After the heads of Sebastianus and Jovinus arrived at Honorius' court in Ravenna in late August, to be forwarded for display among other usurpers on the walls of Carthage, relations between Ataulf and Honorius improved sufficiently for Ataulf to cement them by marrying Galla Placidia at Narbo in early 414. The nuptials were celebrated with high Roman festivities and magnificent gifts from the Gothic booty. Priscus Attalus gave the wedding speech, a classical epithalamium.

Under Ataulf's rule, the Visigoths couldn't be said to be masters of a settled kingdom until Ataulf took possession of Narbonne and Toulouse in 413. Still, the Visigoths sustained an uneasy client relationship with the western empire.

Although Ataulf remained an Arian Christian, his relationship with Roman culture was summed up, from a Catholic Roman perspective, by the words that the contemporary Christian apologist Orosius put into his mouth, Ataulf's Declaration:

"At first I wanted to erase the Roman name and convert all Roman territory into a Gothic empire: I longed for Romania to become Gothia, and Athaulf to be what Caesar Augustus had been. But long experience has taught me that the ungoverned wildness of the Goths will never submit to laws, and that without law a state is not a state. Therefore I have more prudently chosen the different glory of reviving the Roman name with Gothic vigour, and I hope to be acknowledged by posterity as the initiator of a Roman restoration, since it is impossible for me to alter the character of this Empire."

Honorius's general Constantius (who would later become Emperor Constantius III), poisoned official relations with Ataulf and gained permission to blockade the Mediterranean ports of Gaul. In reply, Ataulf acclaimed Priscus Attalus as Augustus in Bordeaux in 414. But Constantius' naval blockade was successful and, in 415, Ataulf withdrew with his people into northern Hispania. Attalus fled, fell into the hands of Constantius, and came to a bad end.

Galla Placidia traveled with Ataulf. The infant son, Theodosius, she bore him died in infancy and was buried in Hispania in a silver-plated coffin http://ccat.sas.upenn.edu/bmcr/2004/2004-07-48.html, thus eliminating an opportunity for a Romano-Visigothic line.

In Hispania, Ataulf imprudently accepted into his service one of the late Sarus' followers, unaware that the man harbored a secret desire to avenge the death of his beloved patron. And so, in the palace at Barcelona, the man brought Ataulf's reign to a sudden end by killing him while he bathed.

Sigeric, the brother of Sarus, immediately became king—for a mere seven days, when he was also murdered and succeeded by Wallia. Under the latter's reign, Galla Placidia was returned to Ravenna where, in 417, at the urging of Honorius, she remarried, her new husband being the implacable enemy of the Goths, Constantius.

The main sources for the career of Ataulf are Paulus Orosius, the chronicles of the Gallaecian bishop Hydatius, and those of Augustine's disciple, Prosper of Aquitaine.

Ataulf's declaration

The authenticity of Ataulf's declaration at Narbonne, as Orosius reported it in a rhetorical history that was explicitly written "against pagans" (it was completed in 417/18) has been doubted. Antonio Marchetta concludes that the words are indeed Ataulf's and distinguishes them from their interpretation by Orosius, who was preparing his readers for a conclusion that Christian times were felicitous and who attributed Ataulf's apparent change of heart to the power of his love for Galla Placidia, the instrument of divine intervention in God's plan for an eternal Roman Empire. Marchetta finds the marriage instead an act of hard-headed politics.

External links

1. De Imperatoribus Romanis: Hugh Elton, "Western Roman Emperors of the First Quarter of the Fifth Century"

http://www.roman-emperors.org/westemp5.htm

2. Septimane Wisigothique: "D'où venaient les Wisigoths?" (in French, link no longer functional)

3. Edward Gibbon, History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, chapter 31

http://ebooks.adelaide.edu.au/g/gibbon/edward/g43d/chapter31.html

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.

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Edward Gibbons' "Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire" passage relating to the Visigoths can also be found at:

http://infomotions.com/etexts/gutenberg/dirs/1/5/3/4/15345/15345.htm

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AKA: Ataulph the Visigoth

3rd King of the West Goths,murdered by servant.

Sources:

Author: Norma Lorre Goodrich Title: "King Arthur" Publication: 1989 Harper & Row, Publishers, Inc., 10 East 53rd St., New York, N.Y. 10022 ISBN: 0-06-097182-7 Library of Congress Catalog Card #: 85-22558 Page: pg110 and gendex

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Ben M. Angel notes: The Medlands project identifies one surviving child by Adulphus, King of the Goths in Spain, but does not list a source (just about the only instance where I've seen this happen, I believe it to be a rare oversight):

http://fmg.ac/Projects/MedLands/VANDALS,%20SUEVI,%20VISIGOTHS.htm#GensericA

GELIMER ([425]-). The primary source which confirms his parentage has not yet been identified.

m EURICA, daughter of [ADULPHUS King of the Goths in Spain]. The primary source which confirms her parentage and marriage has not yet been identified. -------------------- ALARIC (-Bruttium, southern Italy end 410). First mentioned in 391 when he moved southwards into Greece, he suffered several military setbacks but succeeded in resettling the Goths in Macedonia[18]. He was elected in 395 as ALARIC King of the Visigoths. He entered the western part of the Roman Empire in 401, and by the end of the year had attacked Venetia and was threatening Milan. Alaric was defeated by the Romans in 402 at Pollenza, and in 403 at Verona, after which the Goths abandoned Italy and settled in Dalmatia and Pannonia[19]. King Alaric returned to Italy in 408, the Goths' attacks culminating in the sack of Rome in Aug 410[20]. Procopius records that Alaric died from illness[21]. m ---. The name(s) of King Alaric's wife or wives is not known. King Alaric had children:

a) daughter. [22]m THEODERIC (-killed in battle near Troyes 451). He was elected to succeed in 418 on the death of King Walia as THEODERIC I King of the Visigoths.

b) other children. -------------------- Ataulfo on Wikipedia -------------------- (Athaulf de Wisigothie) Titres: Roi des Wisigoths (410) http://gw.geneanet.org/nobily?lang=fr;pz=elisabeth+therese+marie+helene;nz=de+belgique;ocz=0;p=athaulf;n=de+wisigothie

view all 13

Ataulf (Adolphus), King of the Visigoths's Timeline

355
355
Dacia (Present Romania)
373
373
Age 18
(Probably Present Germany)
410
410
- September, 415
Age 55
411
411
Age 56
414
January 1, 414
Age 59
Narbona, Francia
November, 414
Age 59
Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain
415
September, 415
Age 60
Barcino (Present Barcelona), Tarraconensis (Present Catalonia), Hispaniae (Present Spain)
415
Age 60
Black Area,,,Europe
460
460
Age 60
Italy
????