[13] Maximum omnium, quae ab illo gesta sunt, bellorum praeter Saxonicum huic bello successit, illud videlicet, quod contra Avares sive Hunos susceptum est. Quod ille et animosius quam cetera et longe maiori apparatu administravit. Unam tamen per se in Pannoniam - nam hanc provinciam ea gens tum incolebat - expeditionem fecit, cetera filio suo Pippino ac praefectis provinciarum, comitibus etiam atque legatis perficienda commisit. Quod cum ab his strenuissime fuisset administratum, octavo tandem anno conpletum est. Quot proelia in eo gesta, quantum sanguinis effusum sit, testatur vacua omni habitatore Pannonia et locus, in quo regia Kagani erat, ita desertus, ut ne vestigium quidem in eo humanae habitationis appareat. Tota in hoc bello Hunorum nobilitas periit. tota gloria decidit. Omnis pecunia et congesti ex longo tempore thesauri direpti sunt. Neque ullum bellum contra Francos exortum humana potest memoria recordari, quo illi magis ditati et opibus aucti sint. Quippe cum usque in id temporis poene pauperes viderentur, tantum auri et argenti in regia repertum, tot spolia pretiosa in proeliis sublata, ut merito credi possit hoc Francos Hunis iuste eripuisse, quod Huni prius aliis gentibus iniuste eripuerunt. Duo tantum ex proceribus Francorum eo bello perierunt: Ericus dux Foroiulanus in Liburnia iuxta Tharsaticam maritimam civitatem insidiis oppidanorum interceptus, et Geroldus Baioariae praefectus in Pannonia, cum contra Hunos proeliaturus aciem strueret, incertum a quo, cum duobus tantum, qui eum obequitantem ac singulos hortantem comitabantur, interfectus est. Ceterum incruentum poene Francis hoc bellum fuit et prosperrimum exitum habuit, tametsi diutius sui magnitudine traheretur.

War with the Huns

[13] The war against the Avars, or Huns, followed [791], and, except the Saxon war, was the greatest that he waged; he took it up with more spirit than any of his other wars, and made far greater preparations for it. He conducted one campaign in person in Pannonia, of which the Huns then had possession. He entrusted all subsequent operations to his son, Pepin, and the governors of the provinces, to counts even, and lieutenants. Although they most vigorously prosecuted the war, it only came to a conclusion after a seven years' struggle. The utter depopulation of Pannonia, and the site of the Khan's palace, now a desert, where not a trace of human habitation is visible bear witness how many battles were fought in those years, and how much blood was shed. The entire body of the Hun nobility perished in this contest, and all its glory with it. All the money and treasure that had been years amassing was seized, and no war in which the Franks have ever engaged within the memory of man brought them such riches and such booty. Up to that time the Huns had passed for, a poor people, but so much gold and silver was found in the Khan's palace, and so much valuable spoil taken in battle, that one may well think that the Franks took justly from the Huns what the Huns had formerly taken unjustly from other nations. Only two of the chief men of the Franks fell in this war - Eric, Duke of Friuli, who was killed in Tarsatch [799], a town on the coast of Liburnia by the treachery of the inhabitants; and Gerold,Governor of Bavaria, who met his death in Pannonia, slain [799], with two men that were accompanying him, by an unknown hand while he was marshaling his forces for battle against the Huns, and riding up and down the line encouraging his men. This war was otherwise almost a bloodless one so far as the Franks were concerned, and ended most satisfactorily, although by reason of its magnitude it was long protracted.