- After the death of his cousin Germanus, Justinian I appoints Narses new supreme commander and returns to Italy. In Salona on the Adriatic coast, he assembles a Byzantine expeditionary force totaling 20,000 or possibly 30,000 men and a contingent of foreign allies, notably Lombards, Heruls and Bulgars.
- Gothic War: Narses arrives in Venetia and discovers that a powerful Gothic-Frank army (50,000 men), under joint command of the kings Totila and Theudebald, has blocked the principal route to the Po Valley. Not wishing to engage such a formidable force and confident that the Franks would avoid a direct confrontation, Narses skirts the lagoons along the Adriatic shore, by using vessels to leapfrog his army from point to point along the coast. In this way he arrives at the capital Ravenna without encountering any opposition. He attacks and crushes a small Gothic force at Ariminum (modern Rimini).
- Autumn – Battle of Sena Gallica: The Byzantine fleet (50 warships) destroys the Gothic naval force under Indulf near Sena Gallica (Senigallia), some 17 miles (27 km) north of Ancona. It marks the end of the Gothic supremacy in the Mediterranean Sea.
- July 9 – Beirut is destroyed by an earthquake and tsunami. Its epicenter has an estimated magnitude of about 7.2 or 7.6, and according to reports of Antoninus of Piacenza, Christian pilgrim, some 30,000 people are killed.
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