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The Hunnic Empire or Huns Empire was prominent in the 4th and 5th century CE. They were nomadic people who settled in Central Asia, the Caucasus, and Eastern Europe.
See the fact file below for more information on the Hunnic Empire or alternatively, you can download our 21-page Hunnic Empire worksheet pack to utilise within the classroom or home environment.
Key Facts & Information
- The Huns were a Confederation of Eurasian tribes from the Steppes of Central Asia, especially Turkish ones. They gained military dominance over many of their greatest rivals through a combination of sophisticated weapons, incredible mobility, and tactical strategies, subjugating the tribes they conquered.
- Appearing from beyond the Volga River some years after the middle of the fourth century, they first conquered the Alani, that controlled the plains between the rivers Volga and Don, and overthrew the Ostrogoth empire between Don and Dniester.
- Around 376, they defeated the Visigoths who were living in what is now essentially Romania. They then arrived at the Roman Empire’s Danube frontier.
- Their mass migration to Europe, under Attila’s rule, brought significant racial and political upheaval. The Pope himself, who has been portrayed as the victory of moral persuasion over the sword, is said to have driven Attila back from the gates of Rome. The empire fell around 469, not long after the death of Attila.
- The origins of the Huns during the 4th century, which spread through Europe, remain unknown. Mainstream historians, however, view them as a group of Central Asian nomadic tribes possibly ruled by an aristocracy of Turkish-speaking descent.
- The Huns were possibly ethnically diverse; they seem to have used a Hunnic language as well as Gothic as a lingua franca.
- Ancient records say that as early as the 3rd century, the Huns had settled in the lands northwest of the Caspian Sea. The Caspian Huns organized by the latter half of the century, around 370, crushed a tribe of Alans to their west.
- The Huns invaded and killed an Ostrogothic empire further to the west. In 395, Armenia was ravaged by a Hun raid through the Caucasus Mountains, where they seized Erzurum, sacked Edessa and Antioch, and even entered Tyre in Syria.
- In 408, the Hun Uldin invaded the Eastern Roman province of Moesia but his attack was checked and Uldin was forced to retreat.
- The Huns were great archers who shot from their horses. They engaged in hand fighting with heavy, solid armour, and used fake techniques of withdrawal and ambush.
- They favoured fighting on flat ground (steppe) where they could move their horses and fire their arrows upward to rain down from above on the enemy, sitting low on the horse to do so.
- The Huns were far too disunited from the political standpoint for all their early exploits to stage a meaningful campaign. The Huns were more of a confederation of states than an empire.
- While the title of “High King” existed, very few of those with this title managed to rule all the Hunnic tribes effectively. As a result, the Huns lacked consistent leadership, and lacked shared goals.
- Around 420, a chief called Oktar started welding under his banner the diverse Hunnic tribes. He was succeeded by his nephew, Rugila, who became the Hun confederation’s leader, uniting the Huns with a common goal in a cohesive nation.
- He led them into an alliance with Roman General Aetius, to a campaign in the Western Roman Empire. This brought the Huns even greater strength and popularity.
- In 434, he plotted a major invasion of the Eastern Roman Empire, but died before his plans could be realized. His heirs were his nephews Bleda and Attila, who ruled a dual kingdom. They split the Hunnic lands among them, but still regarded the empire as one body.
- Attila and Bleda had the same ambition as King Rugila (from whom they inherited the Hunnic Empire). They compelled the Eastern Roman Empire to sign the Margus Treaty, granting trading privileges to the Huns (among other things) and an annual tribute from the Romans.
- With their southern frontier secured by this treaty, the Huns could turn their full attention to the eastward subjugation of tribal subjugation. However, both the Hunnic kings turned their attention back to the Eastern Romans where the Romans failed to deliver the negotiated tribute, and other terms of the Margus Treaty were not met. The Kings were further incensed by news that the Bishop of Margus had crossed into Hun lands and desecrated royal graves.
- War broke out between the two empires, with the Huns capitalizing on a depleted Roman army to raze Margus, Singidunum, and Viminacium cities. Though a truce was concluded in 441, two years later war resumed with another failure on the part of the Romans to pay the tribute.
- Throughout the following campaign, Hun armies invaded Constantinople alarmingly, sacking Sardica, Arcadiopolis and Philippopolis along the way.
- The Eastern Roman Emperor Theodosius II, suffering a total defeat at the Battle of Chersonesus, gave in to Hun’s demands and the Anatolian Peace was concluded in the autumn of 443. With a huge train full of loot, the Huns returned to their territories.
- Bleda died in 445, leaving the sole ruler of the Hun Empire as Attila. The empire collapsed in 469, following Attila’s death.
Hunnic Empire Worksheets
This is a fantastic bundle which includes everything you need to know about the Hunnic Empire across 21 in-depth pages. These are ready-to-use Hunnic Empire worksheets that are perfect for teaching students about the Hunnic Empire or Huns Empire which was prominent in the 4th and 5th century CE. They were nomadic people who settled in Central Asia, the Caucasus, and Eastern Europe.
Complete List Of Included Worksheets
- Hunnic Empire Facts
- The Nomadic Tribe
- Dual Kingship
- True or False?
- The Huns
- Building Words
- Huns Empire
- Hunnic Puzzle
- The Descendants
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Link will appear as Hunnic Empire Facts & Worksheets: https://kidskonnect.com - KidsKonnect, June 4, 2020
Use With Any Curriculum
These worksheets have been specifically designed for use with any international curriculum. You can use these worksheets as-is, or edit them using Google Slides to make them more specific to your own student ability levels and curriculum standards.