The Vandal Kingdom

The Vandals was a name of a group of two tribes, the Silingians and the Hasdingians, that lived in the area between the rivers Oder and Vistula before they migrated to the Danube region during the second century AD. A memory of their time in northern Europe is the region of Silesia, which is named after the Silingians. At the beginning of the fifth century were the Vandals forced to migrate to the west because of pressure from the Huns. In alliance with the Suevi and the Alans did they cross the Rhine 406 and Gaul was ravaged by them for three years before the moved on to the Iberian peninsula, which they divided between themselves. The Hasdingians and Suevi got the north western part (Galicia), the Alans got the south west (Lusitania) and the Silingians led by their king Fredbal got the southern part (Baetica). The Alans and the Silingians were severely decimated 416-418 after battles against the Visigoths and was therefore forced to merge with the Hasdingians who were led by king Gunderic. After the merger Gunderic called himself  king of the Vandals and the Alans.

Genseric sacking Rome

Attacked by the Romans and the Suevi, the Vandals left Galicia about 420 and settled in southern Spain, which have got its name Andalusia from the Vandals. They did not stay in Andalusia for long however, their new king Gaiseric (also called Geiseric or Genseric) led them to north Africa 429 where they created a powerful state.

Vandal soldiers carry off loot and captives after attacking Rome

Carthage was seized 439 and made into their new capitol and their navy that was built shortly afterwards made the the Mediterranean unsafe and conquered all large islands in the western Mediterranean. The sacking of Rome would much later result in the term “vandalism”. But the Vandal kingdom was weakened after Gaiseric’s death 477 and it was easily conquered by the East Roman Empire 533-534.

Gelimer’s coin

Hasding House

439 – 477          Geiseric (invaded north Africa 429; dated his reign from his

capture of Carthage 439)

477 – 484          Huneric (son)

484 – 496          Gunthamund (nephew)

496 – 523          Thrasamund (brother)

523 – 530          Hilderic (son of Huneric; depose, died 533)

530 – 533          Gelimer (nephew of Thrasamund; deposed; Byzantine conquest

of the Vandal kingdom)