Sack of Rome (410)

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The Sack of Rome occurred on 24 August 410.wikipedia
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Alaric I

AlaricAlaric I king of the VisigothsAlaric the Great
The city was attacked by the Visigoths led by King Alaric.
He is best known for his sack of Rome in 410, which marked a decisive event in the decline of the Roman Empire.

Visigoths

VisigothicVisigothGothic
The city was attacked by the Visigoths led by King Alaric.
The Visigoths invaded Italy under Alaric I and sacked Rome in 410.

Brennus (4th century BC)

BrennusBrenner IIIBrennius
The previous sack of Rome had been accomplished by the Gauls under their leader Brennus in 390 or 387/6 BC. The sacking of 410 is seen as a major landmark in the fall of the Western Roman Empire.
Brennus's sack of Rome was the only time in 800 years the city was occupied by a non-Roman army before the fall of the city to the Visigoths in 410 AD.

Fall of the Western Roman Empire

decline of the Roman Empirefall of the Roman Empirefall of Rome
The previous sack of Rome had been accomplished by the Gauls under their leader Brennus in 390 or 387/6 BC. The sacking of 410 is seen as a major landmark in the fall of the Western Roman Empire.
As one convenient marker for the end, 476 has been used since Gibbon, but other key dates for the fall of the Roman Empire in the West include the Crisis of the Third Century, the Crossing of the Rhine in 406 (or 405), the sack of Rome in 410, and the death of Julius Nepos in 480.

Ravenna

Ravenna, ItalySavio(RA)
At that time, Rome was no longer the capital of the Western Roman Empire, having been replaced in that position first by Mediolanum in 286 and then by Ravenna in 402.
However, in 409, King Alaric I of the Visigoths simply bypassed Ravenna, and went on to sack Rome in 410 and to take Galla Placidia, daughter of Emperor Theodosius I, hostage.

Rome

RomanRomaRome, Italy
At that time, Rome was no longer the capital of the Western Roman Empire, having been replaced in that position first by Mediolanum in 286 and then by Ravenna in 402.
Rome, which had lost its central role in the administration of the empire, was sacked in 410 by the Visigoths led by Alaric I, but very little physical damage was done, most of which was repaired.

Honorius (emperor)

HonoriusEmperor HonoriusFlavius Honorius
The death of Theodosius had also wracked the political structure of the Empire: Theodosius' sons, Honorius and Arcadius, were given the Western and Eastern empires, respectively, but they were young and needed guidance.
During his reign, Rome was sacked for the first time in almost 800 years.

Western Roman Empire

Western EmpireWesternWest
At that time, Rome was no longer the capital of the Western Roman Empire, having been replaced in that position first by Mediolanum in 286 and then by Ravenna in 402.
Alaric's men sacked Rome in 410.

Goths

GothicgothDeewan Lal Chand
The Goths, one of the Germanic tribes, had invaded the Roman empire on and off since 238.
They were held in check but in led by Alaric I sacked Rome in 410.

Radagaisus

Radagaisus, King of the Goths
However, the Goth Radagaisus invaded Italy that same year, putting any such plans on hold.
These Goths later joined Alaric I in his conquest of Rome in 410.

Stilicho

Flavius StilichoStiliconeTicinum massacre
Alaric was defeated by Theodosius and his general Flavius Stilicho in 392, who forced Alaric back into Roman vassalage.
Then, the Gothic army broke through the gates and sacked the city in August of 410.

Gothic War (376–382)

Gothic WarGothic War of 376–382Gothic Wars
The Goths rebelled and began looting and pillaging throughout the eastern Balkans.
This change in Rome's relationship with barbarians would lead to the sack of Rome in 410.

Galla Placidia

PlacidiaAelia Galla PlacidiaEmpress Galla Placidia
Galla Placidia, the sister of the emperor Honorius, was also trapped in the city and gave her consent to the Roman Senate to execute Serena.
Rome was under siege, with minor interruptions, from 408 to August 24, 410.

Olympius

Olympius, a palatine official and an enemy of Stilicho's, spread false rumors that Stilicho planned to place his own son Eucherius on the throne of the East, and many came to believe them.
Subsequently, around 30,000 Gothic soldiers defected to Alaric and took part in the first sack of Rome in 800 years, a key event in the fall of the Western Roman Empire.

Uldin

Uldin the Hun
Gainas, who at one point had been made magister militum, rebelled, but he was killed by the Huns under Uldin, who sent his head back to Constantinople as a gift.
In the summer of 409, a large 10,000 strong men Hunnic army was called into assistance by Honorius, but it was probably only few thousand strong as did not stop Alaric I from Sack of Rome (410).

Sarus the Goth

Sarus
At this point, a number of Goths in his army started deserting him, including Sarus, who went over to the Romans.
This prompted Alaric to finally give up on negotiations and sack Rome on August 24.

Pope Innocent I

Innocent IInnocentpope
Pope Innocent I even agreed to it, provided it be done in private.
The historian Zosimus in his Historia Nova suggests that during the sack of Rome in 410 by Alaric I, Innocent I was willing to permit private pagan practices as a temporary measure.

Mausoleum of Augustus

his own mausoleumAugusteoAugustus
Many of the city's great buildings were ransacked, including the mausoleums of Augustus and Hadrian, in which many Roman Emperors of the past were buried; the ashes of the urns in both tombs were scattered.
The traditional story is that in 410, during the sack of Rome by Alaric, the pillaging Visigoths rifled the vaults, stole the urns and scattered the ashes, without damaging the structure of the building (Rodolfo Lanciani).

Visigothic Kingdom

VisigothsVisigothicKing
The Visigoths established the Visigothic Kingdom in southwestern Gaul in 418, and they would go on to help the Western Roman Empire fight Attila the Hun at the Battle of the Catalaunian Fields in 451.
For their part, the Visigoths under Alaric famously sacked Rome in 410, capturing Galla Placidia, the sister of Western Roman emperor Honorius.

Castel Sant'Angelo

Mausoleum of HadrianSant'AngeloCastel S. Angelo
Many of the city's great buildings were ransacked, including the mausoleums of Augustus and Hadrian, in which many Roman Emperors of the past were buried; the ashes of the urns in both tombs were scattered.
The urns and ashes were scattered by Visigoth looters during Alaric's sacking of Rome in 410, and the original decorative bronze and stone statuary were thrown down upon the attacking Goths when they besieged Rome in 537, as recounted by Procopius.

Cosenza

ConsentiaCosentiaCosenza, Calabria
Alaric died of illness at Consentia in late 410, mere months after the sack.
In 410 AD Alaric I, king of the Visigoths sacked the city of Rome and became the first foreign enemy to capture the city in over 800 years.

Battle of Pollentia

Pollentia
On Easter Sunday, April 6, 402, Stilicho launched a surprise attack which became the Battle of Pollentia.
"A strident chauvinism and a refusal to negotiate with the barbarians led to the sack of Rome in 410", during which Romans had to pay three times as much as Alaric originally wanted in order to ransom their city back from the Visigoths.

Battle of Verona (402)

Battle of VeronaVerona
After brief negotiations and maneuvers, the two forces clashed again at the Battle of Verona, where Alaric was defeated and besieged in a mountain fortress, taking heavy casualties.
This brought about the war which ended with the siege and Sack of Rome by Alaric in 410.

Porta Salaria

Salarian Gate
On August 24, 410, the Visigoths entered Rome through its Salarian Gate, according to some opened by treachery, according to others by want of food, and pillaged the city for three days.
The Goth king Alaric I entered Rome from this gate to begin the famous Sack of Rome.

Sack of Rome

sacks of RomeSacking of Romesackings of Rome
Sack of Rome
Sack of Rome (410), by Visigoths under Alaric