Battle of Faventia

In the spring of 542, at the Battle of Faventia (modern Faenza), an Ostrogothic army under king Totila scattered the larger Roman forces of generals Constantian and Alexander,[1] beginning the resurgence of Gothic resistance to the Roman reconquest of Italy. Before the battle, Valaris, a gigantic Goth, challenged any Roman to do single combat with him. Valaris was slain by the Byzantine soldier Artabazes, who was also mortally wounded.

Battle of Faventia
Part of the Gothic War
DateSpring 542
Faventia (modern Faenza), Italy
Result Ostrogothic victory
Ostrogothic Kingdom Byzantine Empire
Commanders and leaders
Totila Constantian
5,000[1] 12,000


The key moment during the battle, was, according to Procopius, when the Roman rear was violently attacked by some 300 men of the Ostrogothic cavalry.[1]


  1. Heather 2013, p. 162.


  • Heather, Peter J. (2013). The Restoration of Rome: Barbarian Popes and Imperial Pretenders. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0199368518.