The Lavosi Gang Wars were a series of conflicts between three gangs; the Broken Cloaks, the Shattered Brotherhood, and the Caravan of Wonders; and the government of Lavos, led by Victor Damius. The Wars began with the Shattered Brotherhood and the Broken Cloaks openly engaging in combat on the streets of Lavos proper, which began sometime in early May. By June, the fighting became so chaotic that the Lavosi government had to step in and intervene, fearing damage to the city and death of innocent citizens -- both being things that they had failed to prevent.
What resulted was a four-way war that was incredibly bloody for all sides, and the source for one of Damius's few critical mistakes; he underestimated the gangs' power, a burden he would have to bear for the rest of his life.
Fighting raged on everywhere in the country, and outside of it as well; several encounters between the Broken Cloaks and the Shattered Brotherhood saw fighting taking place as north as the Village Territory of Efugio and as west as Meyron. While the Efugians had no national representation, Meyron had plenty, and called for the war to end, no matter the cost. This resulted in a war not only against the gangs, but against the politics of Doras Edrossi as a whole. Any other diplomat would have failed handling it; Victor Damius, in this regard, is considered the greatest among many, one of the many reasons being that he saved his country from financial and physical ruin during this period.
Although the Gang Wars officially ended in 242 AC, when the Broken Cloaks and the Shattered Brotherhood were driven out of the city of Lavos, the fighting continued well after the fact for some of the gangs, both against each other and against the government. Two of the leaders of the Broken Cloaks, Jorry 'Lavos' and 'Ser' Garryt, attempted to assassinate Victor Damius himself in his private villa on July 29th, 244 AC, dying in the process. To this day, they were the closest men to killing him. The two men remained unbroken and reputedly died with smiles on their faces, which means that Lavos and Victor Damius never truly won the Lavosi Gang Wars. Afterwards, under the leadership of Kallum Resno, the Broken Cloaks regained a foothold in Lavos proper and did not lose it until the early 300s AC. It is rumored that Kallum betrayed the two in order to gain full power over the Broken Cloaks, and he ruled them until his death, which the gang itself would soon follow.
This war, it should go without saying, had a detrimental effect on Lavos, and shaped the negative attitude towards the gangs in the region for generations to follow. It claimed at least 80,000 innocent lives of people who were caught in the crossfire between the three gangs, and the three gangs had not suffered any better as well; the Broken Cloaks had lost 30% of their men, the Shattered Brotherhood had lost 45%, and the Caravan of Wonders lost 65% before they pulled out of the city and purportedly began to north travel to Ethryke, where they had been wiped extinct by the locals who had already had their own grudges against the Zaentovi.