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Charaton (Olympiodorus of Thebes: Χαράτων) was said to be the first of the kings of the Huns from c. 410–422.[1] It is believed that Charaton ruled mostly the eastern part of the Hunnic Empire.

In 412, Charaton received the Byzantine ambassador Olympiodorus.[1] Olympiodorus travelled to Charaton’s kingdom by sea, but does not record whether the sea in question was the Black or Adriatic. The former would put Charaton’s Huns somewhere on the Pontic steppe, while the latter would put them on the Pannonian plain.


His name in the Turkic language 'Kara-ton' means 'black-dressed'. It could also be the name of a clan or tribe to which the man belonged. It is compared to the Kyrgyz tribe Bozton ("Gray Coats"), and the Kyrgyz clans "White Coats", "Yellow Caps", and "High Caps" have analogous names.[2]

Preceded by
Hunnic rulers
c. 411
Succeeded by
Joint rule


  1. ^ a b Hun dateline En
  2. ^ Otto Maenchen-Helfen, The World of the Huns: Studies in Their History and Culture, University of California Press, 1973, p.417.