Jordanes was a Goth who was born in Scythia in the early part of the 6th century AD. Little is known about his life but it is believed that he worked as a secretary to one of the leading Gothic families.

Jordanes main work is The Origin and Deeds of the Goths which he wrote in about AD 550. Jordanes argued in his book that the Romans had relied heavily on Gothic mercenaries to obtain and preserve their empire.

Primary Sources

(1) Jordanes, The Origin and Deeds of the Goths (c. AD 550)

Then came Caesar... who conquered all kingdoms and even seized islands lying beyond our world.

(2) Jordanes, The Origin and Deeds of the Goths (c. AD 550)

The Goths were wiser than other barbarians and were nearly like the Greeks... King Dicineus (1st century BC) taught the Goths logic and made them skilled in reasoning beyond all other races; he showed them practical knowledge and so persuaded them to abound in good works... Think, I pray you, what pleasure it was for these brave men, when for a little space they had leisure from warfare, to be instructed in the teachings of philosophy.