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The Huns were a group of nomadic pastoral people who, appearing from beyond the Volga, migrated into Europe c. 370 AD and built up an enormous empire in Europe. Since De Guignes linked them with the Xiongnu who had been northern neighbours of China three hundred years before,[1] considerable scholarly effort has been devoted in investigating such a connection. However, there is no evidence for a direct connection between the Xiongnu and the Huns.[2] The relationships of the language of the Huns have been the subject of debate for centuries. The leading current theory is that it was a Turkic language.[3] However, numerous other languages were spoken within the Hun pax including East Germanic.[4] Their main military technique was mounted archery.

The Huns may have stimulated the Great Migration, a contributing factor in the collapse of the Roman Empire.[5] They formed a unified empire under Attila the Hun, who died in 453; their empire broke up the next year. Their descendants, or successors with similar names, are recorded by neighbouring populations to the south, east, and west as having occupied parts of Eastern Europe and Central Asia roughly from the 4th century to the 6th century. Variants of the Hun name are recorded in the Caucasus until the early 8th century.

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  1. De Guignes, Joseph (1756-1758), [Expression error: Missing operand for > Histoire générale des Huns, des Turcs, des Mongols et des autres Tartares] 
  2. The Cambridge History of Early Inner Asia. David Sinor. Page 178 there is no evidence to show that the dominant element in the Hun state was historically connected with that of the Hsiung-nu
  3. Frucht, Richard C., Eastern Europe, (ABC-CLIO, 2005), 744.
  4. Sinor. Page 202
  5. "However, the seed and origin of all the ruin and various disasters that the wrath of Mars aroused... we have found to be (the invasions of the Huns)" [Ammianus Marcellinus], book XXXI, chapter 2. Loeb edition, Transl. John Rolfe, first pub. 1922
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