|Gepid Expedition in Lombardy|
|Part of Frankish-Lombard War|
Lombard (orange) and Frankish (blue) lands in the region when the Gepid Republic declared war
|Commanders and leaders|
|General Gaiseric Valomer|
The Gepid Expedition in Lombardy was a military expedition against the Kingdom of Lombardy in order to help the Frankish Empire and to avenge the raiding on their coasts made by the Lombards.
At the end of the 7th century, Lombardy was invaded during a three sided war against the Frankish Empire, the Gothic Empire and the Rus' Principality. After the war, they were left with only Gotland.
During the War for the Ashes of Rome, the Lombards began to attack the Frankish Empire, hoping to regain their old homeland. This was well-received by the Lombard population on the mainland, and lead to a massive war between the two nations.
Between 745 and 750, the Lombards raided the Gepid coasts in order to pressure them to support their cause. This had the opposite effect, creating an anti-Lombard feeling among the population. The Consul of the time, Vithimiric Aric, warned the Lombards, saying that should a Lombard ship be seen again in around the Gepid coasts, it would be war.
In 765, the Lombards tried to pass the Black Sea by rushing to the Mediterranean to attack the Franks. But the small fleet they sent was destroyed by Byzantine ships. Using this as an excuse, and on the idea of helping their Frankish allies, the Consul Americ Valomer declared war against Lombardy, and sent an expedition lead by his son Gaiseric Valomer to beat the Lombards into submission. He also posted a fleet in the entrance of the Danube, hoping it would stop the Lombards from raiding again.
The War in Lombardy
At first, Gaiseric began by raiding from the Frankish territories in order to weaken the enemy, and tried to use hit-and-run tactics in order to lose as few soldiers as possible. This tactic proved to be successful, and gave courage for the Gepid soldiers in order to push the barbarians away.
In the years between 770 and 775, the Lombards were mostly occupied with raiding the Franks, and Gaiseric finally began a true invasion. With his forces, he was able to conquer some lands in the south, and built many fortress there in order to defend themselves against the Lombards. During that time, the Senate voted to send reinforcements, led by Frigivern Aric, son of the late Consul Vithimiric Aric.
By that time, the Lombards finally realized what was happening and numerous soldiers in the region. The sieges that followed were hard, but led to the victory of the Lombards, Gaiseric hardly making it out of it alive. By the time the reinforcements of Frigivern arrived, the Lombards had already reconquered the region, which led to an utter defeat of the Gepid army, and the failure of the expedition.
In 783, the new Gepid Consul Goderic Hunigild sent a letter to the Lombard King, admitting the Lombard control of the region and promising he would not launch another expedition as long as he was Consul.