Full Name: Attila the Hun
Profession: King and Chieftain of the Hunnic Empire
Biography: Attila was King of the Huns, a fiercely battle hardy nomadic people from the east of the Roman Empire, from 434 till his death in 453. Although he was one of a number of leaders besieging the declining Roman Empire it is his name that has lingering in the popular imagination as the greatest barbarian of them all.
Attila inherited the throne along with his brother Bleda. The brother ruled together, negotiating the Treaty Of Margus in 439, with Roman emperor Theodosius II, essentially paying the Huns not to invade the empire. However, the Huns later claimed the treaty had been violated and invaded the province of Illyricum, sacking Roman territory almost to the walls of Constantinople.
In 445 AD Attila became sole ruler, most likely after murdering his brother. Attila continued to invade and pillage the empire, destroying hole cities at times across modern Hungary, Greece, Spain and Italy.
In 450 AD the Western Emperor Valentinian's sister, Honoria, sent her engagement ring to Attila along with a request to save her from an unwanted arranged marriage. Attila took Honoria at her word and immediately demanded half of the empire as dowry and marched towards Rome. He was only defeated by the combined forces of the Roman army and the Visigoths in the bloody Battle of the Catalaunian Plains in 451 in which the Visigothic leader Theodoric I was killed.
Attila died just two years later while invading Italy, dying on his wedding night to one of his many brides. The Hunnish empire fell apart just a few years later.
- 0451-04-07 Attila the Hun plunders Metz in Northeastern France
- 0451-06-20 Battle of the Catalaunian Plains: Roman and Visigoths forces defeat Attila the Hun in north east France, alting Hun invasion of Roman Gaul (exact date disputed)
- 0452-06-08 Italy invaded by Attila the Hun