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Battle of Ravenna (476)

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Title: Battle of Ravenna (476)  
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Subject: Ravenna, Battle of Mainz (406), Battle of the Nervasos Mountains, Odoacer, Campaign history of the Roman military
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Battle of Ravenna (476)

Battle of Ravenna (476)
Part of the Germanic Wars
Date 2 September 476
Location Ravenna, modern day Italy
Result Western Roman Empire disestablished
Western Roman Empire Germanic foederati
Commanders and leaders
Paul, brother of Orestes[1] Odoacer
Unknown Unknown
Casualties and losses
Unknown Unknown

The Battle of Ravenna took place on the 2 September 476 and was a minor confrontation between the Heruli under their King Odoacer and the remnants of the Western Roman Army in Italy.

Herulians were foederati of the Western Roman Empire; they were mercenary troops of the Roman Army of Italy. They envied the fortune of their brethren in Gaul, Spain, and Africa, whose victorious arms had acquired an independent and perpetual inheritance; and they insisted that a third part of the lands of Italy should be immediately divided among them. Orestes, the father of the last Roman Emperor, Romulus Augustus, rejected their demand causing their revolt. From all the camps and garrisons of Italy the confederates flocked to the standard of Odoacer, their leader; and Orestes retreated to Pavia. Pavia was pillaged and Orestes was executed.[1]

The decisive battle was fought near Ravenna, the capital of the Western Roman Empire: it saw the Foederati defeat the Roman troops. The city was captured swiftly and easily. Two days later the Emperor Romulus Augustulus was forced to abdicate by Odoacer ending twelve-hundred years of Roman rule in Italy beginning with the Roman Kingdom in 753 BC. Romulus was sent into retirement in Campania.


  1. ^ a b Edward Gibbon, Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, Vol. II, Ed. J.B.Bury, (Random House, 1995), 1141.

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