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530 Battle of Daras ★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Outcome: A promising victory (the first of Belisarius) against the Persians June 530
War  &  Enemy: Enemy:
Sassanid Persians
Iberian War (526-532)
Battle Type:
Pitched battle
The Battlefield Daras Location:
Dara (Gr: Δαράς), in modern Turkey, near the Syrian borders
Modern Country:
  The Byzantines(emperor:  Justinian I) The Enemies
Commander: General Belisarius & Hermogenes Generals Firouz, Pityaxes, Baresmanas
Forces: 25,000 50,000
Losses: more than 8,000
Background story: The Byzantine Empire was at war again with the Sassanids since 527, supposedly because the Persian king Kavadh I had tried to force the Iberians to become Zoroastrians. That was the Iberian War. Emperor Justin I and his nephew Justinian I sent Belisarius into Persia where they were initially defeated. Justinian, then, tried to negotiate but Kavadh instead sent an army towards Dara in 529.
The Battle:
The Byzantines dug a number of ditches to block the Persian cavalry, leaving gaps between them to allow a counterattack. The first wave of the Persian attack was directed against the Roman left pushing back the Roman horsemen but they were repelled by the Huns and Heruli troops. The Persians then attacked the Byzantine right wing, where Firouz sent the elite Immortals. The Roman cavalry were pushed back here too, but Belisarius counterattacked with his reserve bucellari cavalry, and split the Persian troops in two. Half the Persians pursued the Byzantine cavalry, but the rest were trapped, and Baresmanes was killed along with 5,000 other men. The Byzantine cavalry also recovered and routed their pursuers. Belisarius allowed a pursuit for a few miles, but let the majority of Persian survivors escape.
Aftermath: It was an promising victory, but it did not last long because the Byzantines were defeated next year in the battle of Callinicum