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Since the last pre-Christian centuries, members of the Celtic tribe of the Treveri settled in the area of today's Trier.The Romans under Julius Caesar first subdued the Treveri in 58 to 50 BC.

date portal trier map-68

After the death of Lothair II, ruler of Lorraine, Trier in 870 became part of the East Frankish Empire, later called Germany, under Henry I.

The only important abbey that survived wars and secularization by the French at the beginning of 1800 is the Benedictine abbey St. Here, the first three bishops of Trier, Eucharius, Valerius and Maternus are buried alongside the apostle Saint Matthias.

Roman Trier had been subjected to attacks by Germanic tribes from 350 onwards, but these had been repulsed by Emperor Julian.

After the invasions of 407 the Romans were able to reestablish the Rhine frontier and hold northern Gaul tenuously until the end of the 450s, when control was finally lost to the Franks and local military commanders who claimed to represent central Roman authority.

As a result of the conflicts of this period, Trier's population decreased from an estimated 80,000 in the 4th century to 5,000 at the beginning of the 6th century.