Kingdom of the Gepids
The Kingdom of the Gepids was situated along the Tisza River on the territory of the former Roman province of Dacia. The Gepids established a kingdom after the Battle at the Nedao River which took place after unexpected death of Attila the Hun in 454. Attila’s successors were decisively defeated by the Gepids led by Ardaric who was one of the closest companions of Attila. The Hunnic power in Eastern Europe collapsed, while the Gepids conquered the center of the former Hunnic state and the entire Dacian territory. The Gepids also concluded a foedus treaty with the Byzantine Empire and were granted an annuity. However, a rivalry between the Gepids and the Ostrogoths under Theodoric the Great broke out shortly afterwards and resulted in the defeat of the Gepids in 488 and in 505.
The Kingdom of the Gepids reached its height after 539 when the Gepids extended their territory to Lower Pannonia with center in Sirmium (today’s Sremska Mitrovica). Their rivalry with the Lombards was taken advantage by the Byzantine Emperor Justinian I who concluded an alliance with the Lombards in the middle of the 6th century and severely defeated the Gepids in the Battle of Asfeld in 551. The Kingdom of the Gepids was finally destroyed by the allied Lombard and Avar forces in 567.