It means "little father", from Gothic "atta" - "father", combined with a diminutive suffix. This was
the name of a 5th-century leader of the Huns, more cruel and savage than the Tartars, who invaded
and ravaged Europe, before finally being slowed down at the Battle of the "Catalaunian Plains", in
Gaul (present day France), by a coallition led by the Roman general Flavius Aetius and Visigoth king
Theodoric I. Attila raged across Europe and was extremely feared, but failed to win either
Constantinople or Rome. Attila was the name given to him by his Gothic-speaking subjects in Eastern
Europe; his real name may have been Avithohol.