Vultwulf, Prince of the Greuthungi

Is your surname of the Greuthungi Goths?

Research the of the Greuthungi Goths family

Vultwulf, Prince of the Greuthungi's Geni Profile

Share your family tree and photos with the people you know and love

  • Build your family tree online
  • Share photos and videos
  • Smart Matching™ technology
  • Free!


Related Projects

Vultwulf of the Greuthungi Goths

Nicknames: "Vulthuf", "Vultuulf", "Wultwulf"
Birthplace: Scythia (Present Ukraine)
Death: Died in Scythia (Present Ukraine)
Immediate Family:

Son of Achiulf of the Greuthungi and (Generation 9)
Husband of (Generation 10)
Father of Valaravans
Brother of Ansila of the Greuthungi; Airmanareiks, King of the Goths and Ediulf of the Greuthungi

Occupation: Prince of the Greuthungi Goths, 7th King of the Ostrogoths (360-378)
Managed by: Jocelynn Elaine Oakes
Last Updated:

About Vultwulf of the Greuthungi Goths

From the Foundation for Medieval Genealogy page on Hungary:

ACHIULF . Iordanes names "Achiulf et Oduulf" as the sons of Athal[32].


Iordanes names "Ansila et Ediulf, Vultuulf et Hermenerig" as the sons of Achiulf[33].


Iordanes names "Ansila et Ediulf, Vultuulf et Hermenerig" as the sons of Achiulf[34].



Iordanes names "Ansila et Ediulf, Vultuulf et Hermenerig" as the sons of Achiulf[35].


Iordanes names "Valaravans" as the son of Vultwulf[36].



Iordanes names "Ansila et Ediulf, Vultuulf et Hermenerig" as the sons of Achiulf[39].


[32] Iordanes Getarum, MGH Auct. ant. V.1, p. 77.

[33] Iordanes Getarum, MGH Auct. ant. V.1, p. 77.

[34] Iordanes Getarum, MGH Auct. ant. V.1, p. 77.

[35] Iordanes Getarum, MGH Auct. ant. V.1, p. 77.

[36] Iordanes Getarum, MGH Auct. ant. V.1, p. 77.

[39] Iordanes Getarum, MGH Auct. ant. V.1, p. 77.


From Jordanes' Getica (Iordanes' Getarum):


(79) Now the first of these heroes, as they themselves relate in their legends, was Gapt, who begat Hulmul. And Hulmul begat Augis; and Augis begat him who was called Amal, from whom the name of the Amali comes. This Amal begat Hisarnis. Hisarnis moreover begat Ostrogotha, and Ostrogotha begat Hunuil, and Hunuil likewise begat Athal. Athal begat Achiulf and Oduulf. Now Achiulf begat Ansila and Ediulf, Vultuulf and Hermanaric. And Vultuulf begat Valaravans and Valaravans begat Vinitharius. Vinitharius moreover begat Vandalarius;

(80) Vandalarius begat Thiudimer and Valamir and Vidimer; and Thiudimer begat Theodoric. Theodoric begat Amalasuentha; Amalasuentha bore Athalaric and Mathesuentha to her husband Eutharic, whose race was thus joined to hers in kinship.

(81) For the aforesaid Hermanaric, the son of Achiulf, begat Hunimund, and Hunimund begat Thorismud. Now Thorismud begat Beremud, Beremud begat Veteric, and Veteric likewise begat Eutharic, who married Amalasuentha and begat Athalaric and Mathesuentha. Athalaric died in the years of his childhood, and Mathesuentha married Vitiges, to whom she bore no child. Both of them were taken together by Belisarius to Constantinople. When Vitiges passed from human affairs, Germanus the patrician, a cousin of the Emperor Justinian, took Mathesuentha in marriage and made her a Patrician Ordinary. And of her he begat a son, also called Germanus. But upon the death of Germanus, she determined to remain a widow. Now how and in what wise the kingdom of the Amali was overthrown we shall keep to tell in its proper place, if the Lord help us.



(246) Since I have followed the stories of my ancestors and retold to the best of my ability the tale of the period when both tribes, Ostrogoths and Visigoths, were united, and then clearly treated of the Visigoths apart from the Ostrogoths, I must now return to those ancient Scythian abodes and set forth in like manner the ancestry and deeds of the Ostrogoths. It appears that at the death of their king, Hermanaric, they were made a separate people by the departure of the Visigoths, and remained in their country subject to the sway of the Huns; yet Vinitharius of the Amali retained the insignia of his rule.

(247) He rivalled the valor of his grandfather Vultuulf, although he had not the good fortune of Hermanaric.


This information is according to the Wikipedia page on Ukrainian Rulers (no sources listed):


The Amali dynasty, Amals, Amaler, or Amalings of the Greuthungi ("steppe dwellers" or "people of the pebbly coasts"), called later the Ostrogothi.

Wultwulf (Vultuulf, Vulthulf, Vuldulf), born fl. 300 in Ukraine, died fl. 370, prince of the Goths


Vultwulf was not listed as having been a King of the Ostrogoths by Thomas Hodgkin, which may indicate that he believed his reign to be before their culture evolved into the Ostrogoths. Source, Theodoric the Goth: The Barbarian Champion of Civilisation:


From the English Wikipedia page on the Greuthungi:

The Greuthungs, Greuthungi, or Greutungi were a Gothic people of the Black Sea steppes in the third and fourth centuries. They had close contacts with the Thervingi, another Gothic people from west of the river Dnestr. They may be the same people as the later Ostrogoths.


"Greuthungi" may mean "steppe dwellers" or "people of the pebbly coasts".[1] The root greut- is probably related to the Old English greot, meaning "gravel, grit, earth".[2] This is supported by evidence that geographic descriptors were commonly used to distinguish people living north of the Black Sea both before and after Gothic settlement there and by the lack of evidence for an earlier date for the name pair Tervingi-Greuthungi than the late third century.[3] It is also possible that the name "Greuthungi" has pre-Pontic Scandinavian origins.[3] It may mean "rock people", to distinguish the Ostrogoths from the Gauts (in what is today Sweden).[3] Jordanes does refer to an Evagreotingi (Greuthung island) in Scandza, but this may be legend. It has also been suggested that it may be related to certain place names in Poland, but this has met with little support.[3]


Jordanes, a mid 6th Century historian identifies the 4th Century Greuthungi with the 5th-6th Century Ostrogothi. Jordanes also describes a large Greuthung kingdom in the late 4th century, but Ammianus Marcellinus, a late 4th Century historian, does not record this. Many modern historians, including Peter Heather and Michael Kulikowski, doubt that it was ever particularly extensive (and suggest one or more smaller kingdoms).[4][5]


In time and geographical area, the Greutungi and their neighbors the Thervingi correspond to the archaeological Chernyakhov Culture.

Settlement pattern

Chernyakhov settlements cluster in open ground in river valleys. The houses include sunken-floored dwellings, surface dwellings, and stall-houses. The largest known settlement (Budesty) is 35 hectares.[6] Most settlements are open and unfortified; some forts are also known.[citation needed]

Burial practices

Chernyakhov cemeteries include both cremation and inhumation burials; among the latter the head is to the north. Some graves were left empty. Grave goods often include pottery, bone combs, and iron tools, but almost never any weapons.[7]

Relationship with the Ostrogoths

The division of the Goths is first attested in 291.[8] The Greuthungi are first named by Ammianus Marcellinus, writing no earlier than 392 and perhaps later than 395, and basing his account of the words of a Tervingian chieftain who is attested as early as 376.[8] The Ostrogoths are first named in a document dated September 392 from Milan.[8] Claudian mentions that they together with the Gruthungi inhabit Phrygia.[9] According to Herwig Wolfram, the primary sources either use the terminology of Tervingi/Greuthungi or Vesi/Ostrogothi and never mix the pairs.[8] All four names were used together, but the pairing was always preserved, as in Gruthungi, Austrogothi, Tervingi, Visi.[1]

Both Herwig Wolfram and Thomas Burns conclude that the term Greuthungi was a geographical identifier used by the Tervingi to describe a people that described itself as the Ostrogoths.[1][10] This terminology therefore dropped out of use after the Goths were displaced by the Hunnic invasions. In support of this, Wolfram cites Zosimus as referring to a group of "Scythians" north of the Danube who were called "Greuthungi" by the barbarians north of the Ister.[11] Wolfram concludes that this people was the Tervingi who had remained behind after the Hunnic conquest.[11] On this understanding, the Greuthungi and Ostrogothi were more or less the same people.[10]

That the Greuthungi were the Ostrogothi is also supported by Jordanes.[12] He identified the Ostrogothic kings from Theodoric the Great to Theodahad as the heirs of the Greuthungian king Ermanaric. This interpretation, however, though very common among scholars today, is not universal. The nomenclature of Greuthungi and Tervingi fell out of use shortly after 400.[8] In general, the terminology of a divided Gothic people disappeared gradually after they entered the Roman Empire.[1]


1. ^ Herwig Wolfram, History of the Goths, trans. T. J. Dunlop (Berkeley, University of California Press, 1988), p. 25.

2. ^ Thomas S. Burns, A History of the Ostrogoths (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1984), p. 30.

3. ^ Wolfram387–388 n58.

4. ^ Heather, Peter, 1998, The Goths, Blackwell, Malden, pp. 53-55.

5. ^ Kulikowski, Michael, 2007, Rome's Gothic Wars, Cambridge University Press: Cambridge, pp. 54-56, 111-112.

6. ^ Heather, Peter and Matthews, John, 1991, The Goths in the Fourth Century, Liverpool, Liverpool University Press, pp. 52-54.

7. ^ Heather, Peter and Matthews, John, 1991, Goths in the Fourth Century, Liverpool, Liverpool University Press, pp. 54-56.

8. ^ Wolfram, 24.

9. ^ Wolfram, 387 n52.

10. ^ Burns, 44.

11. ^ Wolfram, 387 n57.

12. ^ Heather, 52–57, 300–301.


Ben M. Angel's summary: Vultwulf having lived from 300 to 370 may be correct, though this is not sourced. He apparently preceded Airmanareiks (Hermanrich) and the arrival of the Huns. Likely, he was Achiulf's eldest son (though FMG's Medlands lists Ansila and Ediulf as being the likely eldest sons).

The only other information that I've been able to find is that Vultwulf was renowned for his "valor". What caused him to be renowned did not make it into Getica, but his valor was used for comparison with his grandson, Vinitharius, noted as the last leader of Ostrogoth resistance to the Huns.

He likely ruled over a people called the Greuthungi. This may not have been a large tribe of people, but they were probably the people that the Amal Dynasty led before the formation of the Ostrogoths. The Greuthungi Goths were a part of the larger Chernyakhov Culture that dominated the Scythian plains (present Ukraine) before the arrival of the Huns.

Alternate spellings: Vultuulf, Vulthulf, Vuldulf.

view all

Vultwulf, Prince of the Greuthungi's Timeline

Scythia (Present Ukraine)
Age 30
Scythia (Present Ukraine)
Age 78
Scythia (Present Ukraine)
- present
Prince of the Goths