Euric

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Euric
King of the Visigoths
Eurico, rey de los Visigodos (Museo del Prado).jpg
Imaginary portrait of Euric by Manuel Rodríguez de Guzmán. Oil on canvas (1855)
Reign466 – 28 December 484
Predecessor Theodoric II
Successor Alaric II
Born440
Died28 December 484(484-12-28) (aged 43–44)
Dynasty Balt
Father Theodoric I
Religion Arianism

Euric (Gothic: *Aiwareiks [1] , see Ivor, Yves (given name), Aivars/Aivaras), also known as Evaric, or Eurico in Spanish and Portuguese (c. 440 – 28 December 484), son of Theodoric I, ruled as king (rex) of the Visigoths, after murdering his brother, Theodoric II, [2] from 466 until his death in 484. Sometimes he is called Euric II.

Contents

Reign

With his capital at Toulouse, Euric inherited a large portion of the Visigothic possessions in the Aquitaine region of Gaul, an area that had been under Visigothic control since 415. Over the decades the Visigoths had gradually expanded their holdings at the expense of the weak Roman government, including Euric's sieges of Clermont in 475 and 476, [3] as well as advancing well into Hispania in the process.

Upon becoming king, Euric defeated several other Visigothic kings and chieftains in a series of civil wars and soon became the first ruler of a truly unified Visigothic nation. Taking advantage of the Romans' problems, he extended Visigothic power in Hispania, driving the Suevi into the northwest of Iberia. By the time the Western Roman Empire ended in 476 he controlled nearly the entire Iberian peninsula.

In 469 or 470 Euric defeated the British king Riothamus at Déols and expanded his kingdom even further north, possibly as far as the Somme River, the March of Frankish territory. In 471, Euric defeated a Roman army at Arles, killing three Roman counts and Anthemiolus, son of the Roman emperor Anthemius.

Previous Visigothic kings had officially ruled only as legates of the Roman emperor but Euric was the first to declare his complete independence from the puppet emperors. In 475 he forced the Western Emperor Julius Nepos to recognize his full independence in exchange for the return of the Provence region of Gaul. The Roman citizens of Hispania then pledged their allegiance to Euric, recognizing him as their king. In the same year Clermont(-Ferrand) surrendered to him after a long siege, and its bishop, Sidonius Apollinaris, sued for peace.

Euric was one of the more learned of the great Visigothic kings and was the first German to formally codify his people's laws. The Code of Euric of 471 codified the traditional laws that had been entrusted to the memory of designated specialists who had learned each article by heart. He employed many Gallo-Roman nobles in his court such as Leo of Narbonne.

At Euric's death in 484 the Kingdom of the Visigoths encompassed all of Iberia, except for the region of Galicia ruled by the Suebi, and a third of modern France.

The fortune of nations has often depended on accidents; and France may ascribe her greatness to the premature death of the Gothic king, at a time when his son by his wife Ragnachildis, Alaric II was a helpless infant, and his adversary Clovis an ambitious and valiant youth.

Related Research Articles

Alaric II 5th and 6th-century Visigothic king

Alaric II was the King of the Visigoths in 484–507. He succeeded his father Euric as king of the Visigoths in Toulouse on December 28, 484; he was the great-grandson of the more famous Alaric I, who sacked Rome in 410. He established his capital at Aire-sur-l'Adour in Aquitaine. His dominions included not only the majority of Hispania but also Gallia Aquitania and the greater part of an as-yet undivided Gallia Narbonensis.

Visigoths Gothic tribe

The Visigoths were an early Germanic people who along with the Ostrogoths constituted the two major branches of the Goths. These tribes flourished and spread throughout the late Roman Empire in Late Antiquity, or what is known as the Migration Period. The Visigoths emerged from earlier Gothic groups who had invaded the Roman Empire beginning in 376 and had defeated the Romans at the Battle of Adrianople in 378. Relations between the Romans and the Visigoths were variable, alternately warring with one another and making treaties when convenient. The Visigoths under Alaric I invaded Italy and sacked Rome in 410. After the Visigoths sacked Rome, they began settling down, first in southern Gaul and eventually in Hispania, where they founded the Visigothic Kingdom and maintained a presence from the 5th to the 8th centuries AD.

5th century Century

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The 470s decade ran from January 1, 470, to December 31, 479.

The 480s decade ran from January 1, 480, to December 31, 489.

418 418

Year 418 (CDXVIII) was a common year starting on Tuesday of the Julian calendar. At the time, it was known as the Year of the Consulship of Honorius and Theodosius. The denomination 418 for this year has been used since the early medieval period, when the Anno Domini calendar era became the prevalent method in Europe for naming years.

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466 466

Year 466 (CDLXVI) was a common year starting on Saturday of the Julian calendar. At the time, it was known as the Year of the Consulship of Leo and Tatianus. The denomination 466 for this year has been used since the early medieval period, when the Anno Domini calendar era became the prevalent method in Europe for naming years.

Septimania Historical region in France

Septimania is a historical region in modern-day south of France. It referred to the western part of the Roman province of Gallia Narbonensis that passed to the control of the Visigoths in 462, when Septimania was ceded to their king, Theodoric II. Under the Visigoths it was known as simply Gallia or Narbonensis. Septimania territory roughly corresponds with the former administrative region of Languedoc-Roussillon that merged into the new administrative region of Occitanie. Septimania passed briefly to the Emirate of Córdoba, which had been expanding from the south during the eighth century before its subsequent conquest by the Franks, who by the end of the ninth century termed it Gothia or the Gothic March.

Battle of Vouillé battle between the Franks commanded by Clovis and the Visigoths commanded by Alaric II

The Battle of Vouillé — was fought in the northern marches of Visigothic territory, at Vouillé near Poitiers (Gaul), in the spring of 507 between the Franks commanded by Clovis and the Visigoths commanded by Alaric II.

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The Ostrogothic Kingdom, officially the Kingdom of Italy, was established by the Ostrogoths in Italy and neighbouring areas from 493 to 553.

Tonantius Ferreolus, was a vir clarissimus, or Gallo-Roman senator.

Visigothic Kingdom State that emerged after the Visigothic invasion of the Iberian Peninsula

The Visigothic Kingdom or Kingdom of the Visigoths was a kingdom that occupied what is now southwestern France and the Iberian Peninsula from the 5th to the 8th centuries. One of the Germanic successor states to the Western Roman Empire, it was originally created by the settlement of the Visigoths under King Wallia in the province of Gallia Aquitania in southwest Gaul by the Roman government and then extended by conquest over all of Hispania. The Kingdom maintained independence from the Eastern Roman or Byzantine Empire, whose attempts to re-establish Roman authority in Hispania were only partially successful and short-lived.

Ecdicius Avitus was a Gallo-Roman aristocrat, senator, and magister militum praesentalis from 474 until 475.

Hispania Roman province

Hispania was the Roman name for the Iberian Peninsula and its provinces. Under the Republic, Hispania was divided into two provinces: Hispania Citerior and Hispania Ulterior. During the Principate, Hispania Ulterior was divided into two new provinces, Baetica and Lusitania, while Hispania Citerior was renamed Hispania Tarraconensis. Subsequently, the western part of Tarraconensis was split off, first as Hispania Nova, later renamed "Callaecia". From Diocletian's Tetrarchy onwards, the south of remaining Tarraconensis was again split off as Carthaginensis, and probably then too the Balearic Islands and all the resulting provinces formed one civil diocese under the vicarius for the Hispaniae. The name Hispania was also used in the period of Visigothic rule.

Theodoric I King of the Visigoths

Theodoric I was the King of the Visigoths from 418 to 451. Theodoric is famous for his part in defeating Attila at the Battle of the Catalaunian Plains in 451, where he was killed on June 20.

The Battle of Arelate was fought in 458 near Arelate (Arles) between Western Roman Emperor Majorian and Visigothic king Theodoric II. After the assassination of Flavius Aetius in 454, the Visigoths began to expand their kingdom at the expense of the crumbling Roman administration in Gaul and Hispania. When Majorian became emperor in 457, the Visigoths under king Theodoric II had just recently defeated the Suebic Kingdom in north-west Hispania and were consolidating their hold on the rest of the peninsula.

The Battle of Arles was fought between the Visigoths and the Western Roman Empire in 471. Prior to the battle, the Visigoths had defeated the Bretons at the Battle of Déols in 469, and were expanding into Aquitaine. Alarmed with this development, Emperor Anthemius sent an expedition under Anthemiolus across the Alps against the Visigothic king Euric, who was besieging Arles. Euric crushed the Roman army and killed Anthemiolus and three Roman counts. Euric subsequently captured Arles and much of southern Gaul. The defeat in Gaul was a direct cause of the subsequent overthrow of Anthemius as emperor by Ricimer.

References

  1. T. Perrenot, La toponymie burgonde, Payot, 1942, p. 211
  2. Ian Wood, The Merovingians Kingdoms:450-751, (Longman Group, 1994), 16.
  3. Ian Wood, The Merovingians Kingdoms:450-751, 17

Commons-logo.svg Media related to Eurico at Wikimedia Commons

King Euric of the Visigoths
Born: 415 Died: 484
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Theodoric II
King of the Visigoths
466 – 28 December 484
Succeeded by
Alaric II