How Many Barbarians Invaded Rome?

By Robert Palmer

The invasion of Rome by barbarians is a fascinating topic that has captivated historians for centuries. In this article, we will explore the question: How many barbarians invaded Rome? Let’s delve into the historical records and uncover the truth.


Rome, once a mighty empire, faced numerous invasions from various barbarian tribes during its decline. These invasions marked a significant turning point in the history of the Roman Empire.

The Visigoths

One of the most well-known barbarian tribes that invaded Rome was the Visigoths. Led by their king Alaric, they first invaded Italy in 401 AD. The Visigoths sacked Rome in 410 AD, causing widespread devastation and shock throughout the empire.

The Ostrogoths

Another prominent barbarian tribe was the Ostrogoths. Under their leader Theodoric the Great, they overran Italy and established their own kingdom in 493 AD. While not directly involved in invading Rome itself, their presence significantly impacted the region.

The Vandals

The Vandals were yet another tribe that played a significant role in invading Rome. Led by their king Genseric, they launched a devastating attack on Rome in 455 AD. The Vandals pillaged and looted the city, leaving behind a trail of destruction.

The Huns

Although not primarily Targeting Rome itself, it is essential to mention the Huns when discussing barbarian invasions. Under their infamous leader Attila, they posed a constant threat to both Eastern and Western Roman Empires during the 5th century AD.

The Fall of Rome

As these various barbarian tribes invaded Rome, they contributed to the overall decline and fall of the Roman Empire. The invasions weakened the empire’s defenses, drained its resources, and ultimately led to its eventual collapse in 476 AD.


In conclusion, there were several barbarian tribes that invaded Rome during its decline. The Visigoths, Ostrogoths, Vandals, and Huns all played significant roles in shaping the history of Rome. While it is challenging to determine the exact number of invaders, their impact on the Roman Empire cannot be understated.

As historians continue to study this period, we gain a deeper understanding of how these invasions transformed Rome from a mighty empire to a mere shadow of its former self.