Fully illustrated, this enthralling study explores how the Vandals in North Africa attempted to defend their kingdom against the resurgent Byzantine Empire during 533–36.
In AD 533, the Byzantine Emperor Justinian I launched the first of his campaigns to reconquer the Western Roman Empire. This effort began in North Africa (modern Algeria and Tunisia), targeting the Vandal kingdom established there a century earlier, which also included Sardinia, Corsica and the Balearic Islands. Featuring full-colour artwork and mapping alongside carefully chosen archive illustrations, this book shows how the Byzantine general Belisarius established his formidable reputation in the lightning-fast campaign that ensued, exploring the origins, tactics and reputation of the two sides' forces as they fought for control of North Africa.
The landing of Belisarius' forces took the Vandal king, Gelimer, completely by surprise; in September 533 the two sides met in battle near Carthage in an encounter known to posterity as Ad Decimum, with Gelimer ambitiously attempting to trap Belisarius' forces as they advanced. In December, the two sides fought again in a momentous clash at Tricamarum, where the fate of Gelimer's regime would be determined. A third battle ensued in 536, when the rebel Stotzas' Byzantine and Vandal troops confronted Belisarius' forces, the outcome sealing the Byzantine general's standing as the foremost soldier of his age.
Featuring specially commissioned artwork and mapping alongside archive illustrations and photographs, this vivid account compares and assesses the two sides' fighting men as they vied for supremacy in North Africa.
Murray Dahm is a freelance historian and the author of several titles for Osprey. He has written more than 50 articles for magazines such as Ancient Warfare, Medieval Warfare and Ancient History. Murray lives in Australia.
Giuseppe Rava was born in Faenza in 1963, and took an interest in all things military from an early age. Entirely self-taught, Giuseppe has established himself as a leading military history artist and is inspired by the works of the great military artists, such as Detaille, Meissonier, Röchling, Lady Butler, Ottenfeld and Angus McBride. He lives and works in Italy.