Late Roman Warlords

Hardcover | November 1, 2002

byPenny MacGeorge

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Late Roman Warlords reconstructs the careers of some of the men who shaped (and were shaped by) the last quarter century of the Western Empire. There is a need for a new investigation of these warlords based on primary sources and including recent historical debates and theories. The difficultsources for this period have been analysed (and translated as necessary) to produce a chronological account, and relevant archaeological and numismatic evidence has been utilised.An overview of earlier warlords, including Aetius, is followed by three studies of individual warlords and the regions they dominated. The first covers Dalmatia and Marcellinus, its ruler during the 450s and 460s. A major theme is the question of Marcellinus' western or eastern affiliations: usingan often-ignored Greek source, Penny MacGeorge suggests a new interpretation.The second part is concerned with the Gallic general Aegidius and his son Syagrius, who ruled in northern Gaul, probably from Soissons. This extends to AD 486 (well after the fall of the Western Empire). The problem of the existence or non-existence of a 'kingdom of Soissons' is discussed,introducing evidence from the Merovingian period, and a solution put forward. This section also looks at how the political situation in northern Gaul might throw light on contemporary post-Roman Britain.The third study is of the barbarian patrician Ricimer, defender of Italy, and his successors (the Burgundian prince Gundobad and Orestes, a former employee of Attila) down to the coup of 476 by which Odovacer became the first barbarian king of Italy. This includes discussion of the character andmotivation of Ricimer, particularly in relation to the emperors he promoted and destroyed, and of how historians' assessments of him have changed over time.

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From the Publisher

Late Roman Warlords reconstructs the careers of some of the men who shaped (and were shaped by) the last quarter century of the Western Empire. There is a need for a new investigation of these warlords based on primary sources and including recent historical debates and theories. The difficultsources for this period have been analysed ...

Penny MacGeorge teaches History at Carisbrooke High School, the Isle of Wight
Format:HardcoverDimensions:366 pages, 8.5 × 5.43 × 0.96 inPublished:November 1, 2002Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199252440

ISBN - 13:9780199252442

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`a painstaking...sound reworking of the conventional narrative of the period.'Early Medieval Europe