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Ναρσῆς). A eunuch of the emperor Justinian I. at Constantinople. The place of his birth is unknown. He so ingratiated himself with the emperor, that he appointed him his chamberlain and private treasurer. In A.D. 538 he was placed at the head of an army destined to support Belisarius in the expulsion of the Ostrogoths from Italy; but the dissensions which soon arose between them occasioned his recall. In 552 he was again sent to Italy, to check the progress of Totila the Goth, and, after vanquishing Totila, he captured Rome. He also conquered Teias, whom the Goths had chosen king in the place of Totila, and, in the spring of 554, Bucellinus, the leader of the Alemanni. After Narses had cleared nearly all Italy of the Ostrogoths and other barbarians, he was appointed governor of the country, and ruled it fifteen years. During this time he endeavoured to enrich the treasury by all the means in his power, and excited the discontent of the provinces subject to him, who laid their complaints before the emperor Justin. Narses was deposed in disgrace, and sought revenge by inviting the Lombards to invade Italy, which they did in 568, under their king Alboin. After his deposition he lived at Naples, and died at an advanced age at Rome, in 568 (B. G. ii. 13; iii. and iv.).

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