This is the second of two books which describe the Goths, their arms and armour, dress and equipment, army organisation, campaigns, battle tactics, and strategy.
The focus of this second volume is the Goths after their entry into the Roman Empire. The emphasis lies on the Goths themselves, the kingdoms they established, and their military history, rather than their part in the Late Empire’s history.
From the fourth century onwards, the Goths crossed Europe from one end to the other. They were the first Germanic people to establish lasting kingdoms in core Roman territories such as Italy and Spain, the first to successfully create a synthesis of Germanic and Roman elements, and the first non-Mediterranean people in Europe to enjoy an independent intellectual literary culture. The Gothic writing system was a major source of inspiration for the Cyrillic alphabet. In the Crimea, the last independent Gothic state outlived the Byzantine Empire for 22 years. Their legacy lasted far longer than their kingdoms.
The Goths were not the first lance-armed heavy shock cavalry in Europe, but they became so noted for it that cavalry of the Gothic type achieved an increasingly dominant role in all surviving Romano-Germanic successor states. Without the Goths, the medieval knight as we know him, armed with spear and shield, would not have existed.
This book is illustrated with 80 plates, maps, illustrations and photographs of original items.