Vanished Kingdoms – Tolosa

I’ve started reading Vanished Kingdom’s by Norman Davies. It is pretty interesting, and I think it merits a similar treatment to the Notable Trials – a chapter by chapter discussion.

The book itself is about kingdoms and nations in Europe that existed in the past but are now gone – some without much trace, others with more of a current impact.

The first chapter is on the Visigothic kingdom in France.   After Alaric‘s sack of Rome and his death, the new king Ataulf accepted an alliance to fight in Gaul against other invaders with a view to getting land for a settlement.  Around 415, they got it, and settled in the area of Aquitaine.  After some expansion they made Tolosa, modern Toulouse, their capital.

The Goths in Gaul made their biggest impact in history by helping to drive off Atilla’s invasion in 451 at the Battle of Catalunian Fields.  Their king was killed in the battle, but Gaul was saved.  As the Western Empire faded, their power grew until a good third of  Gaul was under their control.  At one point, their puppet Emperor Avitus was ruling the West as well. Around this time the Goths were allowed to expand into Spain, finally taking most of it to rule.

English: Map of the Visigothic kingdom. I crea...

English: Map of the Visigothic kingdom. I created this work entirely by myself. Sources: Cambridge medieval history, Euratlas. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

After the final fall of the Western Empire, there were only two powers in Gaul – the Goths and the Franks.  In 507, Alaric II the king fought Clovis the Frank and was defeated and killed.  The disaster let the Franks occupy virtually all of the kingdom’s lands in Gaul, leaving the Visigoths to rule in Spain until the Moslem invasions a few centuries later.  They never were able to recover their position, and the Franks were masters of Gaul, or rather Francia – France.


5 thoughts on “Vanished Kingdoms – Tolosa

  1. Pingback: Vanished Kingdoms – Alt Clud | Kilobooks

  2. Pingback: Vanished Kingdoms – Burgundia | Kilobooks

  3. Pingback: Vanished Kingdoms – Aragon | Kilobooks

  4. Pingback: Vanished Kingdoms – Litva | Kilobooks

  5. Pingback: Vanished Kingdoms – Byzantion | Kilobooks

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s