A Dictionary of Greek and Roman biography and mythology

Smith, William

A Dictionary of Greek and Roman biography and mythology. William Smith, LLD, ed. 1890

or CHONDOMA'RIUS (Gundomar), king of the Alemanni, became conspicuous in Roman history in A. D. 351. Magnentius having assumed the purple at Augustodunum, now Autun, in Gaul, the emperor Constantius made an alliance with the Alemanni and induced them to invade Gaul. Their king, Chnodomarius, consequently crossed the Rhine, defeated Decentius Caesar, the brother of Magnentius, destroyed many towns, and ravaged the country without opposition. In 356 Chnodomarius was involved in

a war with Julian, afterwards emperor, and then Caesar, who succeeded in stopping the progress of the Alemanni in Gaul, and who defeated them completely in the following year, 357, in a battle near Argentoratum, now Strassburg. Chnodomarius had assembled in his camp the contingents of six chiefs of the Alemanni, viz. Vestralpus, Urius, Ursicinus, Suomarius, Hortarius, and Serapio, the son of Chnodomarius' brother Mederichus, whose original name was Agenarichus; but in spite of their gallant resistance, they were routed, leaving six thousand dead on the field. Obliged to cross the Rhine in confusion, they lost many thousands more who were drowned in the river. Ammianus Marcellinus says, that the Romans lost only two hundred and forty-three men, besides four officers of rank, but this account cannot be relied upon. Chnodomarius fell into the hands of the victors, and being presented to Julian, was treated by him with kindness, and afterwards sent to Rome, where he was kept a prisoner in the Castra Peregrina on Mount Caelius. There he died a natural death some time afterwards. Ammianus Marcellinus gives a detailed account of the battle of Strassburg, which had the most beneficial effect upon the tranquillity of Gaul. (Amm. Marc. 16.12; Aurel. Vict. Epit. 100.42; Liban. Orat. 10, 12.)