Europe 438: Battle of the Singilis

Political map of Europe & the Mediterranean on 28 Nov 438 (Theodosian Dynasty: Fall of Africa: Battle of the Singilis), showing the following events: Vandal piracy; Valentinian III and Licinia Eudoxia; Battle of Mons Colubrarius; Battle of the Singilis.

Exploiting Rome's lack of focus on Spain, the Suebi revolted in 438 under their new king Rechila. They swiftly pushed southward, securing a crucial victory on the Singilis river, which crushed their adversaries and cleared the path for the conquest of much of the Diocese of Hispaniae.

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Main Events

437–438 Vandal piracy

In 437 the Vandal king Gaiseric began persecuting followers of the orthodox Nicene Creed in favor of “the Arian heresy”, a move which may have gained him some support from the Donatists of Africa. At the same time, “barbarian deserters of the foederati” took to piracy, plundering many islands in the Mediterranean, especially Sicily. As these pirates were almost certainly operating from Vandal Africa, the claim that they were ‘deserters’ was probably a ruse by Gaiseric to avoid a direct confrontation with Rome. in wikipedia

29 Oct 437 Valentinian III and Licinia Eudoxia

In 437 the Western Roman emperor Valentinian III—now sixteen and of age—traveled to Constantinople to marry Licinia Eudoxia, the fifteen-year-old daughter of the Eastern emperor Theodosius II and the empress Eudocia. As part of the wedding celebrations, Valentinian gifted the Diocese of Illyricum to his new father-in-law, probably because the more stable and powerful Eastern Empire was better suited to defending that region from the Huns although it has also been suggested that Valentinian’s mother Galla Placidia had promised to make the cession in return for Theodosius’ recognition of her son in 424. in wikipedia

438 Battle of Mons Colubrarius

In 438 the Western Roman magister militum Aetius traveled to southwest Gaul to join the campaign against the Visigoths of Theodoric I. Catching a large body of Visigoths by surprise at Mons Colubrarius (Snake Mountain), Aetius slaughtered many and chased down the rest with his cavalry, all before Theodoric could arrive on the scene with his remaining forces. An alleged eight thousand Visigoths were killed overall, bringing an end to their offensive against Rome. in wikipedia

438 Battle of the Singilis

In 438 the Suebian king Hermeric, by now seriously ill, abdicated in favor of his son Rechila. Although his father had recently made peace with the people of Gallaecia, Rechila saw no issue in invading the other provinces of Hispaniae and immediately marched south into Baetica. Here he decisively defeated the army of a certain Andevotus—probably a Vandal or other German in Roman employ—in open battle near the Singilis (Genil) River and seized his substantial treasury. in wikipedia