The Great Events by Famous Historians, Vol. 2

Part 5 out of 9

Charles Martel and the sword of the Cid. The crusades were the natural
reprisals for the Arab invasions, and form the last epoch of that great
struggle between the two principal families of the human race."

It is difficult, amid the glimmering light supplied by the allusions of
the classical writers, to gain a full idea of the character and
institutions of Rome's great rival. But we can perceive how inferior
Carthage was to her competitor in military resources, and how far less
fitted than Rome she was to become the founder of centralized and
centralizing dominion that should endure for centuries, and fuse into
imperial unity the narrow nationalities of the ancient races that dwelt
around and near the shores of the Mediterranean Sea?

Carthage was originally neither the most ancient nor the most powerful
of the numerous colonies which the Phoenicians planted on the coast of
Northern Africa. But her advantageous position, the excellence of her
constitution--of which, though ill-informed as to its details, we know
that it commanded the admiration of Aristotle--and the commercial and
political energy of her citizens gave her the ascendency over Hippo,
Utica, Leptis, and her other sister Phoenician cities in those regions;
and she finally reduced them to a condition of dependency similar to
that which the subject allies of Athens occupied relatively to that once
imperial city. When Tyre and Sidon and the other cities of Phoenicia
itself sank from independent republics into mere vassal states of the
great Asiatic monarchies, and obeyed by turns a Babylonian, a Persian,
and a Macedonian master, their power and their traffic rapidly declined,
and Carthage succeeded to the important maritime and commercial
character which they had previously maintained.

The Carthaginians did not seek to compete with the Greeks on the
northeastern shores of the Mediterranean, or in the three inland seas
which are connected with it; but they maintained an active intercourse
with the Phoenicians, and through them with Lower and Central Asia; and
they, and they alone, after the decline and fall of Tyre, navigated the
waters of the Atlantic. They had the monopoly of all the commerce of the
world that was carried on beyond the Straits of Gibraltar. We have yet
extant (in a Greek translation) the narrative of the voyage of Hanno,
one of their admirals, along the western coast of Africa as far as
Sierra Leone; and in the Latin poem of Festus Avienus frequent
references are made to the records of the voyages of another celebrated
Carthaginian admiral, Himilco, who had explored the northwestern coast
of Europe. Our own islands are mentioned by Himilco as the lands of the
Hiberni and Albioni. It is indeed certain that the Carthaginians
frequented the Cornish coast--as the Phoenicians had done before
them--for the purpose of procuring tin; and there is every reason to
believe that they sailed as far as the coasts of the Baltic for amber.
When it is remembered that the mariner's compass was unknown in those
ages, the boldness and skill of the seamen of Carthage, and the
enterprise of her merchants, may be paralleled with any achievements
that the history of modern navigation and commerce can produce.

In their Atlantic voyages along the African shores the Carthaginians
followed the double object of traffic and colonization. The numerous
settlements that were planted by them along the coast from Morocco to
Senegal provided for the needy members of the constantly increasing
population of a great commercial capital, and also strengthened the
influence which Carthage exercised among the tribes of the African
coast. Besides her fleets, her caravans gave her a large and lucrative
trade with the native Africans; nor must we limit our belief of the
extent of the Carthaginian trade with the tribes of Central and Western
Africa by the narrowness of the commercial intercourse which civilized
nations of modern times have been able to create in those regions.

Although essentially a mercantile and seafaring people, the
Carthaginians by no means neglected agriculture. On the contrary, the
whole of their territory was cultivated like a garden. The fertility of
the soil repaid the skill and toil bestowed on it; and every invader,
from Agathocles to Scipio AEmilianus, was struck with admiration at the
rich pasture lands carefully irrigated, the abundant harvests, the
luxuriant vineyards, the plantations of fig and olive trees, the
thriving villages, the populous towns, and the splendid villas of the
wealthy Carthaginians, through which his march lay, as long as he was on
Carthaginian ground.

Although the Carthaginians abandoned the AEgean and the Pontus to the
Greek, they were by no means disposed to relinquish to those rivals the
commerce and the dominion of the coasts of the Mediterranean westward of
Italy. For centuries the Carthaginians strove to make themselves masters
of the islands that lie between Italy and Spain. They acquired the
Balearic Islands, where the principal harbor, Port Mahon, still bears
the name of a Carthaginian admiral. They succeeded in reducing the
greater part of Sardinia; but Sicily could never be brought into their
power. They repeatedly invaded that island, and nearly overran it; but
the resistance which was opposed to them by the Syracusans under Gelon,
Dionysius, Timoleon, and Agathocles preserved the island from becoming
Punic, though many of its cities remained under the Carthaginian rule
until Rome finally settled the question to whom Sicily was to belong by
conquering it for herself.

With so many elements of success, with almost unbounded wealth, with
commercial and maritime activity, with a fertile territory, with a
capital city of almost impregnable strength, with a constitution that
insured for centuries the blessing of social order, with an aristocracy
singularly fertile in men of the highest genius, Carthage yet failed
signally and calamitously in her contest for power with Rome. One of the
immediate causes of this may seem to have been the want of firmness
among her citizens, which made them terminate the First Punic War by
begging peace, sooner than endure any longer the hardships and burdens
caused by a state of warfare, although their antagonists had suffered
far more severely than themselves. Another cause was the spirit of
faction among their leading men, which prevented Hannibal in the second
war from being properly reenforced and supported. But there were also
more general causes why Carthage proved inferior to Rome. These were her
position relatively to the mass of the inhabitants of the country which
she ruled, and her habit of trusting to mercenary armies in her wars.

Our clearest information as to the different races of men in and about
Carthage is derived from Diodorus Siculus. That historian enumerates
four different races: first, he mentions the Phoenicians who dwelt in
Carthage; next, he speaks of the Liby-Phoenicians: these, he tells us,
dwelt in many of the maritime cities, and were connected by
intermarriage with the Phoenicians, which was the cause of their
compound name; thirdly, he mentions the Libyans, the bulk and the most
ancient part of the population, hating the Carthaginians intensely on
account of the oppressiveness of their domination; lastly, he names the
Numidians, the nomad tribes of the frontier.

It is evident, from this description, that the native Libyans were a
subject class, without franchise or political rights; and, accordingly,
we find no instance specified in history of a Libyan holding political
office or military command. The half-castes, the Liby-Phoenicians, seem
to have been sometimes sent out as colonists; but it may be inferred,
from what Diodorus says of their residence, that they had not the right
of the citizenship of Carthage; and only a single solitary case occurs
of one of this race being intrusted with authority, and that, too, not
emanating from the home government. This is the instance of the officer
sent by Hannibal to Sicily after the fall of Syracuse, whom Polybius
calls Myttinus the Libyan, but whom, from the fuller account in Livy, we
find to have been a Liby-Phoenician; and it is expressly mentioned what
indignation was felt by the Carthaginian commanders in the island that
this half-caste should control their operations.

With respect to the composition of their armies, it is observable that,
though thirsting for extended empire, and though some of her leading men
became generals of the highest order, the Carthaginians, as a people,
were anything but personally warlike. As long as they could hire
mercenaries to fight for them, they had little appetite for the irksome
training and the loss of valuable time which military service would have
entailed on themselves.

As Michelet remarks: "The life of an industrious merchant, of a
Carthaginian, was too precious to be risked, as long as it was possible
to substitute advantageously for it that of a barbarian from Spain or
Gaul. Carthage knew, and could tell to a drachma, what the life of a man
of each nation came to. A Greek was worth more than a Campanian, a
Campanian worth more than a Gaul or a Spaniard. When once this tariff of
blood was correctly made out, Carthage began a war as a mercantile
speculation. She tried to make conquests in the hope of getting new
mines to work or to open fresh markets for her exports. In one venture
she could afford to spend fifty thousand mercenaries, in another rather
more. If the returns were good, there was no regret felt for the capital
that had been sunk in the investment; more money got more men, and all
went on well."

Armies composed of foreign mercenaries have in all ages been as
formidable to their employers as to the enemy against whom they were
directed. We know of one occasion--between the First and Second Punic
wars--when Carthage was brought to the very brink of destruction by a
revolt of her foreign troops. Other mutinies of the same kind must from
time to time have occurred. Probably one of these was the cause of the
comparative weakness of Carthage at the time of the Athenian expedition
against Syracuse, so different from the energy with which she attacked
Gelon half a century earlier and Dionysius half a century later. And
even when we consider her armies with reference only to their efficiency
in warfare, we perceive at once the inferiority of such bands of
_condottieri_, brought together without any common bond of origin,
tactics, or cause, to the legions of Rome, which, at the time of the
Punic wars, were raised from the very flower of a hardy agricultural
population, trained in the strictest discipline, habituated to victory,
and animated by the most resolute patriotism.

And this shows, also, the transcendency of the genius of Hannibal, which
could form such discordant materials into a compact organized force, and
inspire them with the spirit of patient discipline and loyalty to their
chief, so that they were true to him in his adverse as well as in his
prosperous fortunes; and throughout the checkered series of his
campaigns no panic rout ever disgraced a division under his command, no
mutiny, or even attempt at mutiny, was ever known in his camp; and
finally, after fifteen years of Italian warfare, his men followed their
old leader to Zama, "with no fear and little hope,"[60] and there, on
that disastrous field, stood firm around him, his Old Guard, till
Scipio's Numidian allies came up on their flank, when at last,
surrounded and overpowered, the veteran battalions sealed their devotion
to their general by their blood!

[Footnote 60: "We advanced to Waterloo as the Greeks did to Thermopylae:
all of us without fear, and most of us without hope."--_Speech of
General Foy._]

"But if Hannibal's genius may be likened to the Homeric god, who, in his
hatred to the Trojans, rises from the deep to rally the fainting Greeks
and to lead them against the enemy, so the calm courage with which
Hector met his more than human adversary in his country's cause is no
unworthy image of the unyielding magnanimity displayed by the
aristocracy of Rome. As Hannibal utterly eclipses Carthage, so, on the
contrary, Fabius, Marcellus, Claudius Nero, even Scipio himself, are as
nothing when compared to the spirit and wisdom and power of Rome. The
senate, which voted its thanks to its political enemy, Varro, after his
disastrous defeat, 'because he had not despaired of the commonwealth,'
and which disdained either to solicit or to reprove or to threaten or in
any way to notice the twelve colonies which had refused their accustomed
supplies of men for the army, is far more to be honored than the
conqueror of Zama. This we should the more carefully bear in mind
because our tendency is to admire individual greatness far more than
national; and, as no single Roman will bear comparison to Hannibal, we
are apt to murmur at the event of the contest, and to think that the
victory was awarded to the least worthy of the combatants. On the
contrary, never was the wisdom of God's providence more manifest than in
the issue of the struggle between Rome and Carthage.

"It was clearly for the good of mankind that Hannibal should be
conquered; his triumph would have stopped the progress of the world; for
great men can only act permanently by forming great nations; and no one
man, even though it were Hannibal himself, can in one generation effect
such a work. But where the nation has been merely enkindled for a while
by a great man's spirit, the light passes away with him who communicated
it; and the nation, when he is gone, is like a dead body to which magic
power had for a moment given unnatural life: when the charm has ceased,
the body is cold and stiff as before. He who grieves over the battle of
Zama should carry on his thoughts to a period thirty years later, when
Hannibal must in the course of nature have been dead, and consider how
the isolated Phoenician city of Carthage was fitted to receive and to
consolidate the civilization of Greece, or by its laws and institutions
to bind together barbarians of every race and language into an organized
empire, and prepare them for becoming, when that empire was dissolved,
the free members of the commonwealth of Christian Europe."[61]

[Footnote 61: Arnold.]

It was in the spring of 207 B.C. that Hasdrubal, after skilfully
disentangling himself from the Roman forces in Spain, and after a march
conducted with great judgment and little loss through the interior of
Gaul and the passes of the Alps, appeared in the country that now is the
north of Lombardy, at the head of troops which he had partly brought out
of Spain and partly levied among the Gauls and Ligurians on his way. At
this time Hannibal, with his unconquered and seemingly unconquerable
army, had been eight years in Italy, executing with strenuous ferocity
the vow of hatred to Rome which had been sworn by him while yet a child
at the bidding of his father, Hamilcar, who, as he boasted, had trained
up his three sons, Hannibal, Hasdrubal, and Mago, like three lion's
whelps, to prey upon the Romans. But Hannibal's latter campaigns had not
been signalized by any such great victories as marked the first years of
his invasion of Italy. The stern spirit of Roman resolution, ever
highest in disaster and danger, had neither bent nor despaired beneath
the merciless blows which "the dire African" dealt her in rapid
succession at Trebia, at Thrasymene, and at Cannae. Her population was
thinned by repeated slaughter in the field; poverty and actual scarcity
ground down the survivors, through the fearful ravages which Hannibal's
cavalry spread through their cornfields, their pasture lands, and their
vineyards; many of her allies went over to the invader's side, and new
clouds of foreign war threatened her from Macedonia and Gaul. But Rome
receded not. Rich and poor among her citizens vied with each other in
devotion to their country. The wealthy placed their stores, and all
placed their lives, at the State's disposal. And though Hannibal could
not be driven out of Italy, though every year brought its sufferings and
sacrifices, Rome felt that her constancy had not been exerted in vain.
If she was weakened by the continued strife, so was Hannibal also; and
it was clear that the unaided resources of his army were unequal to the
task of her destruction. The single deerhound could not pull down the
quarry which he had so furiously assailed. Rome not only stood fiercely
at bay, but had pressed back and gored her antagonist, that still,
however, watched her in act to spring. She was weary, and bleeding at
every pore; and there seemed to be little hope of her escape if the
other hound of old Hamilcar's race should come up in time to aid his
brother in the death grapple.

Hasdrubal had commanded the Carthaginian armies in Spain for some time
with varying but generally unfavorable fortune. He had not the full
authority over the Punic forces in that country which his brother and
his father had previously exercised. The faction at Carthage, which was
at feud with his family, succeeded in fettering and interfering with his
power; and other generals were from time to time sent into Spain, whose
errors and misconduct caused the reverses that Hasdrubal met with. This
is expressly attested by the Greek historian Polybius, who was the
intimate friend of the younger Africanus, and drew his information
respecting the Second Punic War from the best possible authorities. Livy
gives a long narrative of campaigns between the Roman commanders in
Spain and Hasdrubal, which is so palpably deformed by fictions and
exaggerations as to be hardly deserving of attention. It is clear that
in the year B.C. 208, at least, Hasdrubal outmanoeuvred Publius Scipio,
who held the command of the Roman forces in Spain, and whose object was
to prevent him from passing the Pyrenees and marching upon Italy. Scipio
expected that Hasdrubal would attempt the nearest route along the coast
of the Mediterranean, and he therefore carefully fortified and guarded
the passes of the eastern Pyrenees. But Hasdrubal passed these mountains
near their western extremity; and then, with a considerable force of
Spanish infantry, with a small number of African troops, with some
elephants and much treasure, he marched, not directly toward the coast
of the Mediterranean, but in a northeastern line toward the centre of
Gaul. He halted for the winter in the territory of the Arverni, the
modern Auvergne, and conciliated or purchased the goodwill of the Gauls
in that region so far that he not only found friendly winter quarters
among them, but great numbers of them enlisted under him, and, on the
approach of spring, marched with him to invade Italy.

By thus entering Gaul at the southwest, and avoiding its southern
maritime districts, Hasdrubal kept the Romans in complete ignorance of
his precise operations and movements in that country; all that they knew
was that Hasdrubal had baffled Scipio's attempts to detain him in Spain;
that he had crossed the Pyrenees with soldiers, elephants, and money,
and that he was raising fresh forces among the Gauls. The spring was
sure to bring him into Italy, and then would come the real tempest of
the war, when from the north and from the south the two Carthaginian
armies, each under a son of the Thunderbolt[62], were to gather together
around the seven hills of Rome.

[Footnote 62: Hamilcar was surnamed Barca, which means the Thunderbolt.
Sultan Bajazet had the similar surname of Yilderim.]

In this emergency the Romans looked among themselves earnestly and
anxiously for leaders fit to meet the perils of the coming campaign.

The senate recommended the people to elect, as one of their consuls,
Caius Claudius Nero, a patrician of one of the families of the great
Claudian house. Nero had served during the preceding years of the war
both against Hannibal in Italy and against Hasdrubal in Spain; but it is
remarkable that the histories which we possess record no successes as
having been achieved by him either before or after his great campaign of
the Metaurus. It proves much for the sagacity of the leading men of the
senate that they recognized in Nero the energy and spirit which were
required at this crisis, and it is equally creditable to the patriotism
of the people that they followed the advice of the senate by electing a
general who had no showy exploits to recommend him to their choice.

It was a matter of greater difficulty to find a second consul; the laws
required that one consul should be a plebeian; and the plebeian nobility
had been fearfully thinned by the events of the war. While the senators
anxiously deliberated among themselves what fit colleague for Nero could
be nominated at the coming comitia, and sorrowfully recalled the names
of Marcellus, Gracchus, and other plebeian generals who were no more,
one taciturn and moody old man sat in sullen apathy among the conscript
fathers. This was Marcus Livius, who had been consul in the year before
the beginning of this war, and had then gained a victory over the
Illyrians. After his consulship he had been impeached before the people
on a charge of peculation and unfair division of the spoils among his
soldiers; the verdict was unjustly given against him, and the sense of
this wrong, and of the indignity thus put upon him, had rankled
unceasingly in the bosom of Livius, so that for eight years after his
trial he had lived in seclusion in his country seat, taking no part in
any affairs of State. Latterly the censors had compelled him to come to
Rome and resume his place in the senate, where he used to sit gloomily
apart, giving only a silent vote. At last an unjust accusation against
one of his near kinsmen made him break silence, and he harangued the
house in words of weight and sense, which drew attention to him and
taught the senators that a strong spirit dwelt beneath that unimposing

Now, while they were debating on what noble of a plebeian house was fit
to assume the perilous honors of the consulate, some of the elder of
them looked on Marcus Livius, and remembered that in the very last
triumph which had been celebrated in the streets of Rome, this grim old
man had sat in the car of victory, and that he had offered the last
thanksgiving sacrifice for the success of the Roman arms which had bled
before Capitoline Jove. There had been no triumphs since Hannibal came
into Italy. The Illyrian campaign of Livius was the last that had been
so honored; perhaps it might be destined for him now to renew the
long-interrupted series. The senators resolved that Livius should be put
in nomination as consul with Nero; the people were willing to elect him:
the only opposition came from himself. He taunted them with their
inconsistency in honoring the man whom they had convicted of a base
crime. "If I am innocent," said he, "why did you place such a stain on
me? If I am guilty, why am I more fit for a second consulship than I was
for my first one?" The other senators remonstrated with him, urging the
example of the great Camillus, who, after an unjust condemnation on a
similar charge, both served and saved his country. At last Livius ceased
to object; and Caius Claudius Nero and Marcus Livius were chosen consuls
of Rome.

A quarrel had long existed between the two consuls, and the senators
strove to effect a reconciliation between them before the campaign. Here
again Livius for a long time obstinately resisted the wish of his
fellow-senators. He said it was best for the State that he and Nero
should continue to hate one another. Each would do his duty better when
he knew that he was watched by an enemy in the person of his own
colleague. At last the entreaties of the senate prevailed, and Livius
consented to forego the feud, and to cooperate with Nero in preparing
for the coming struggle.

As soon as the winter snows were thawed, Hasdrubal commenced his march
from Auvergne to the Alps. He experienced none of the difficulties which
his brother had met with from the mountain tribes. Hannibal's army had
been the first body of regular troops that had ever traversed their
regions; and, as wild animals assail a traveller, the natives rose
against it instinctively, in imagined defence of their own habitations,
which they supposed to be the objects of Carthaginian ambition. But the
fame of the war, with which Italy had now been convulsed for twelve
years, had penetrated into the Alpine passes, and the mountaineers now
understood that a mighty city southward of the Alps was to be attacked
by the troops whom they saw marching among them. They now not only
opposed no resistance to the passage of Hasdrubal, but many of them, out
of love of enterprise and plunder, or allured by the high pay that he
offered, took service with him; and thus he advanced upon Italy with an
army that gathered strength at every league. It is said, also, that some
of the most important engineering works which Hannibal had constructed
were found by Hasdrubal still in existence, and materially favored the
speed of his advance. He thus emerged into Italy from the Alpine valleys
much sooner than had been anticipated. Many warriors of the Ligurian
tribes joined him; and, crossing the River Po, he marched down its
southern bank to the city of Placentia, which he wished to secure as a
base for his future operations. Placentia resisted him as bravely as it
had resisted Hannibal twelve years before, and for some time Hasdrubal
was occupied with a fruitless siege before its walls.

Six armies were levied for the defence of Italy when the long-dreaded
approach of Hasdrubal was announced. Seventy thousand Romans served in
the fifteen legions of which, with an equal number of Italian allies,
those armies and the garrisons were composed. Upward of thirty thousand
more Romans were serving in Sicily, Sardinia, and Spain. The whole
number of Roman citizens of an age fit for military duty scarcely
exceeded a hundred and thirty thousand. The census taken before the
commencement of the war had shown a total of two hundred and seventy
thousand, which had been diminished by more than half during twelve
years. These numbers are fearfully emphatic of the extremity to which
Rome was reduced, and of her gigantic efforts in that great agony of her
fate. Not merely men, but money and military stores, were drained to the
utmost, and if the armies of that year should be swept off by a
repetition of the slaughters of Thrasymene and Cannae all felt that Rome
would cease to exist.

Even if the campaign were to be marked by no decisive success on either
side her ruin seemed certain. In South Italy, Hannibal had either
detached Rome's allies from her or had impoverished them by the ravages
of his army. If Hasdrubal could have done the same in Upper Italy; if
Etruria, Umbria, and Northern Latium had either revolted or been laid
waste, Rome must have sunk beneath sheer starvation, for the hostile or
desolated territory would have yielded no supplies of corn for her
population, and money to purchase it from abroad there was none. Instant
victory was a matter of life or death. Three of her six armies were
ordered to the North, but the first of these was required to overawe the
disaffected Etruscan. The second army of the North was pushed forward,
under Porcius, the praetor, to meet and keep in check the advanced
troops of Hasdrubal; while the third, the grand army of the North, which
was to be under the immediate command of the consul Livius, who had the
chief command in all North Italy, advanced more slowly in its support.
There were similarly three armies in the South, under the orders of the
other consul, Claudius Nero.

The lot had decided that Livius was to be opposed to Hasdrubal, and that
Nero should face Hannibal. And "when all was ordered as themselves
thought best, the two consuls went forth from the city, each his several
way. The people of Rome were now quite otherwise affected than they had
been when L. AEmilius Paulus and C. Terentius Varro were sent against
Hannibal. They did no longer take upon them to direct their generals, or
bid them despatch and win the victory betimes, but rather they stood in
fear lest all diligence, wisdom, and valor should prove too little; for
since few years had passed wherein some one of their generals had not
been slain, and since it was manifest that, if either of these present
consuls were defeated or put to the worst, the two Carthaginians would
forthwith join, and make short work with the other, it seemed a greater
happiness than could be expected that each of them should return home
victor, and come off with honor from such mighty opposition as he was
like to find. With extreme difficulty had Rome held up her head ever
since the battle of Cannae; though it were so, that Hannibal alone, with
little help from Carthage, had continued the war in Italy. But there was
now arrived another son of Hamilcar, and one that in his present
expedition had seemed a man of more sufficiency than Hannibal himself;
for whereas, in that long and dangerous march through barbarous nations,
over great rivers and mountains that were thought unpassable, Hannibal
had lost a great part of his army, this Hasdrubal, in the same places,
had multiplied his numbers, and gathering the people that he found in
the way, descended from the Alps like a rolling snowball, far greater
than he came over the Pyrenees at his first setting out of Spain. These
considerations and the like, of which fear presented many unto them,
caused the people of Rome to wait upon their consuls out of the town,
like a pensive train of mourners, thinking upon Marcellus and Crispinus,
upon whom, in the like sort, they had given attendance the last year,
but saw neither of them return alive from a less dangerous war.
Particularly old Q. Fabius gave his accustomed advice to M. Livius, that
he should abstain from giving or taking battle until he well understood
the enemy's condition. But the consul made him a froward answer, and
said that he would fight the very first day, for that he thought it long
till he should either recover his honor by victory, or, by seeing the
overthrow of his own unjust citizens, satisfy himself with the joy of a
great though not an honest revenge. But his meaning was better than his

Hannibal at this period occupied with his veteran but much-reduced
forces the extreme south of Italy. It had not been expected either by
friend or foe that Hasdrubal would effect his passage of the Alps so
early in the year as actually occurred. And even when Hannibal learned
that his brother was in Italy, and had advanced as far as Placentia, he
was obliged to pause for further intelligence before he himself
commenced active operations, as he could not tell whether his brother
might not be invited into Etruria, to aid the party there that was
disaffected to Rome, or whether he would march down by the Adriatic Sea.
Hannibal led his troops out of their winter quarters in Bruttium, and
marched northward as far as Canusium. Nero had his head-quarters near
Venusia, with an army which he had increased to forty thousand foot and
two thousand five hundred horse, by incorporating under his own command
some of the legions which had been intended to act under other generals
in the South. There was another Roman army, twenty thousand strong,
south of Hannibal at Tarentum. The strength of that city secured this
Roman force from any attack by Hannibal, and it was a serious matter to
march northward and leave it in his rear, free to act against all his
depots and allies in the friendly part of Italy, which for the two or
three last campaigns had served him for a base of his operations.
Moreover, Nero's army was so strong that Hannibal could not concentrate
troops enough to assume the offensive against it without weakening his
garrisons and relinquishing, at least for a time, his grasp upon the
southern provinces. To do this before he was certainly informed of his
brother's operations would have been a useless sacrifice, as Nero could
retreat before him upon the other Roman armies near the capital, and
Hannibal knew by experience that a mere advance of his army upon the
walls of Rome would have no effect on the fortunes of the war. In the
hope, probably, of inducing Nero to follow him and of gaining an
opportunity of outmanoeuvring the Roman consul and attacking him on his
march, Hannibal moved into Lucania, and then back into Apulia; he again
marched down into Bruttium, and strengthened his army by a levy of
recruits in that district. Nero followed him, but gave him no chance of
assailing him at a disadvantage. Some partial encounters seem to have
taken place; but the consul could not prevent Hannibal's junction with
his Bruttian levies, nor could Hannibal gain an opportunity of
surprising and crushing the consul.[63] Hannibal returned to his former
headquarters at Canusium, and halted there in expectation of further
tidings of his brother's movements. Nero also resumed his former
position in observation of the Carthaginian army.

[Footnote 63: The annalists whom Livy copied spoke of Nero's gaining
repeated victories over Hannibal, and killing and taking his men by tens
of thousands. The falsehood of all this is self-evident. If Nero could
thus always beat Hannibal, the Romans would not have been in such an
agony of dread about Hasdrubal as all writers describe. Indeed, we have
the express testimony of Polybius that the statements which we read in
Livy of Marcellus, Nero, and others gaining victories over Hannibal in
Italy must be all fabrications of Roman vanity. Polybius states that
Hannibal was never defeated before the battle of Zama; and in another
passage he mentions that after the defeats which Hannibal inflicted on
the Romans in the early years of the war, they no longer dared face his
army in a pitched battle on a fair field, and yet they resolutely
maintained the war. He rightly explains this by referring to the
superiority of Hannibal's cavalry, the arm which gained him all his
victories. By keeping within fortified lines, or close to the sides of
the mountains when Hannibal approached them, the Romans rendered his
cavalry ineffective; and a glance at the geography of Italy will show
how an army can traverse the greater part of that country without
venturing far from the high grounds.]

Meanwhile, Hasdrubal had raised the siege of Placentia, and was
advancing toward Ariminum on the Adriatic, and driving before him the
Roman army under Porcius. Nor when the consul Livius had come up, and
united the second and third armies of the North, could he make head
against the invaders. The Romans still fell back before Hasdrubal beyond
Ariminum, beyond the Metaurus, and as far as the little town of Sena, to
the southeast of that river. Hasdrubal was not unmindful of the
necessity of acting in concert with his brother. He sent messengers to
Hannibal to announce his own line of march, and to propose that they
should unite their armies in South Umbria and then wheel round against
Rome. Those messengers traversed the greater part of Italy in safety,
but, when close to the object of their mission, were captured by a Roman
detachment; and Hasdrubal's letter, detailing his whole plan of the
campaign, was laid, not in his brother's hands, but in those of the
commander of the Roman armies of the South. Nero saw at once the full
importance of the crisis. The two sons of Hamilcar were now within two
hundred miles of each other, and if Rome were to be saved the brothers
must never meet alive. Nero instantly ordered seven thousand picked men,
a thousand being cavalry, to hold themselves in readiness for a secret
expedition against one of Hannibal's garrisons, and as soon as night had
set in he hurried forward on his bold enterprise; but he quickly left
the southern road toward Lucania, and, wheeling round, pressed northward
with the utmost rapidity toward Picenum. He had, during the preceding
afternoon, sent messengers to Rome, who were to lay Hasdrubal's letters
before the senate. There was a law forbidding a consul to make war or
march his army beyond the limits of the province assigned to him; but in
such an emergency, Nero did not wait for the permission of the senate to
execute his project, but informed them that he was already on his march
to join Livius against Hasdrubal. He advised them to send the two
legions which formed the home garrison on to Narnia, so as to defend
that pass of the Flaminian road against Hasdrubal, in case he should
march upon Rome before the consular armies could attack him. They were
to supply the place of these two legions at Rome by a levy _en masse_ in
the city, and by ordering up the reserve legion from Capua. These were
his communications to the senate. He also sent horsemen forward along
his line of march, with orders to the local authorities to bring stores
of provisions and refreshment of every kind to the roadside, and to have
relays of carriages ready for the conveyance of the wearied soldiers.
Such were the precautions which he took for accelerating his march; and
when he had advanced some little distance from his camp, he briefly
informed his soldiers of the real object of their expedition. He told
them that never was there a design more seemingly audacious and more
really safe. He said he was leading them to a certain victory, for his
colleague had an army large enough to balance the enemy already, so that
_their_ swords would decisively turn the scale. The very rumor that a
fresh consul and a fresh army had come up, when heard on the
battle-field--and he would take care that they should not be heard of
before they were seen and felt--would settle the business. They would
have all the credit of the victory and of having dealt the final
decisive blow. He appealed to the enthusiastic reception which they
already met with on their line of march as a proof and an omen of their
good fortune. And, indeed, their whole path was amid the vows and
prayers and praises of their countrymen. The entire population of the
districts through which they passed flocked to the roadside to see and
bless the deliverers of their country. Food, drink, and refreshments of
every kind were eagerly pressed on their acceptance. Each peasant
thought a favor was conferred on him if one of Nero's chosen band would
accept aught at his hands. The soldiers caught the full spirit of their
leader. Night and day they marched forward, taking their hurried meals
in the ranks, and resting by relay in the wagons which the zeal of the
country people provided, and which followed in the rear of the column.

Meanwhile, at Rome, the news of Nero's expedition had caused the
greatest excitement and alarm. All men felt the full audacity of the
enterprise, but hesitated what epithet to apply to it. It was evident
that Nero's conduct would be judged of by the event, that most unfair
criterion, as the Roman historian truly terms it. People reasoned on the
perilous state in which Nero had left the rest of his army, without a
general, and deprived of the core of its strength, in the vicinity of
the terrible Hannibal. They speculated on how long it would take
Hannibal to pursue and overtake Nero himself, and his expeditionary
force. They talked over the former disasters of the war, and the fall of
both the consuls of the last year. All these calamities had come on them
while they had only one Carthaginian general and army to deal with in
Italy. Now they had two Punic wars at a time. They had two Carthaginian
armies, they had almost two Hannibals, in Italy. Hasdrubal was sprung
from the same father; trained up in the same hostility to Rome; equally
practised in battle against their legions; and, if the comparative speed
and success with which he had crossed the Alps were a fair test, he was
even a better general than his brother. With fear for their interpreter
of every rumor, they exaggerated the strength of their enemy's forces in
every quarter, and criticised and distrusted their own.

Fortunately for Rome, while she was thus a prey to terror and anxiety,
her consul's nerves were stout and strong, and he resolutely urged on
his march toward Sena, where his colleague Livius and the praetor
Porcius were encamped, Hasdrubal's army being in position about half a
mile to their north. Nero had sent couriers forward to apprise his
colleague of his project and of his approach; and by the advice of
Livius, Nero so timed his final march as to reach the camp at Sena by
night. According to a previous arrangement, Nero's men were received
silently into the tents of their comrades, each according to his rank.
By these means there was no enlargement of the camp that could betray to
Hasdrubal the accession of force which the Romans had received. This was
considerable, as Nero's numbers had been increased on the march by the
volunteers, who offered themselves in crowds, and from whom he selected
the most promising men, and especially the veterans of former campaigns.
A council of war was held on the morning after his arrival, in which
some advised that time should be given for Nero's men to refresh
themselves after the fatigue of such a march. But Nero vehemently
opposed all delay. "The officer," said he, "who is for giving time to my
men here to rest themselves is for giving time to Hannibal to attack my
men, whom I have left in the camp in Apulia. He is for giving time to
Hannibal and Hasdrubal to discover my march, and to manoeuvre for a
junction with each other in Cisalpine Gaul at their leisure. We must
fight instantly, while both the foe here and the foe in the South are
ignorant of our movements. We must destroy this Hasdrubal, and I must be
back in Apulia before Hannibal awakes from his torpor." Nero's advice
prevailed. It was resolved to fight directly; and before the consuls and
praetor left the tent of Livius, the red ensign, which was the signal to
prepare for immediate action, was hoisted, and the Romans forthwith drew
up in battle array outside the camp.

Hasdrubal had been anxious to bring Livius and Porcius to battle, though
he had not judged it expedient to attack them in their lines. And now,
on hearing that the Romans offered battle, he also drew up his men and
advanced toward them. No spy or deserter had informed him of Nero's
arrival, nor had he received any direct information that he had more
than his old enemies to deal with. But as he rode forward to reconnoitre
the Roman line, he thought that their numbers seemed to have increased,
and that the armor of some of them was unusually dull and stained. He
noticed, also, that the horses of some of the cavalry appeared to be
rough and out of condition, as if they had just come from a succession
of forced marches. So also, though, owing to the precaution of Livius,
the Roman camp showed no change of size, it had not escaped the quick
ear of the Carthaginian general that the trumpet which gave the signal
to the Roman legions sounded that morning once oftener than usual, as if
directing the troops of some additional superior officer. Hasdrubal,
from his Spanish campaigns, was well acquainted with all the sounds and
signals of Roman war, and from all that he heard and saw he felt
convinced that both the Roman consuls were before him. In doubt and
difficulty as to what might have taken place between the armies of the
South, and probably hoping that Hannibal also was approaching, Hasdrubal
determined to avoid an encounter with the combined Roman forces, and to
endeavor to retreat upon Insubrian Gaul, where he would be in a friendly
country, and could endeavor to reopen his communication with his
brother. He therefore led his troops back into their camp; and as the
Romans did not venture on an assault upon his intrenchments, and
Hasdrubal did not choose to commence his retreat in their sight, the day
passed away in inaction. At the first watch of the night Hasdrubal led
his men silently out of their camp, and moved northward toward the
Metaurus, in the hope of placing that river between himself and the
Romans before his retreat was discovered. His guides betrayed him; and
having purposely led him away from the part of the river that was
fordable, they made their escape in the dark, and left Hasdrubal and his
army wandering in confusion along the steep bank, and seeking in vain
for a spot where the stream could be safely crossed. At last they
halted; and when day dawned on them, Hasdrubal found that great numbers
of his men, in their fatigue and impatience, had lost all discipline and
subordination, and that many of his Gallic auxiliaries had got drunk,
and were lying helpless in their quarters. The Roman cavalry was soon
seen coming up in pursuit, followed at no great distance by the legions,
which marched in readiness for an instant engagement. It was hopeless
for Hasdrubal to think of continuing his retreat before them. The
prospect of immediate battle might recall the disordered part of his
troops to a sense of duty, and revive the instinct of discipline. He
therefore ordered his men to prepare for action instantly, and made the
best arrangement of them that the nature of the ground would permit.

Heeren has well described the general appearance of a Carthaginian army.
He says: "It was an assemblage of the most opposite races of the human
species from the farthest parts of the globe. Hordes of half-naked Gauls
were ranged next to companies of white-clothed Iberians, and savage
Ligurians next to the far-travelled Nasamones and Lotophagi.
Carthaginians and Phoenici-Africans formed the centre, while innumerable
troops of Numidian horsemen, taken from all the tribes of the Desert,
swarmed about on unsaddled horses, and formed the wings; the van was
composed of Balearic slingers; and a line of colossal elephants, with
their Ethiopian guides, formed, as it were, a chain of moving fortresses
before the whole army."

Such were the usual materials and arrangements of the hosts that fought
for Carthage; but the troops under Hasdrubal were not in all respects
thus constituted or thus stationed. He seems to have been especially
deficient in cavalry, and he had few African troops, though some
Carthaginians of high rank were with him. His veteran Spanish infantry,
armed with helmets and shields, and short cut-and-thrust swords, were
the best part of his army. These and his few Africans he drew up on his
right wing, under his own personal command. In the centre he placed his
Ligurian infantry, and on the left wing he placed or retained the Gauls,
who were armed with long javelins and with huge broadswords and targets.
The rugged nature of the ground in front and on the flank of this part
of his line made him hope that the Roman right wing would be unable to
come to close quarters with these unserviceable barbarians before he
could make some impression with his Spanish veterans on the Roman left.
This was the only chance that he had of victory or safety, and he seems
to have done everything that good generalship could do to secure it. He
placed his elephants in advance of his centre and right wing. He had
caused the driver of each of them to be provided with a sharp iron spike
and a mallet, and had given orders that every beast that became
unmanageable, and ran back upon his own ranks, should be instantly
killed by driving the spike into the vertebra at the junction of the
head and the spine. Hasdrubal's elephants were ten in number. We have no
trustworthy information as to the amount of his infantry, but it is
quite clear that he was greatly outnumbered by the combined Roman

The tactics of the Roman legions had not yet acquired that perfection
which they received from the military genius of Marius,[64] and which we
read of in the first chapter of Gibbon. We possess, in that great work,
an account of the Roman legions at the end of the commonwealth, and
during the early ages of the empire, which those alone can adequately
admire who have attempted a similar description. We have also, in the
sixth and seventeenth books of Polybius, an elaborate discussion on the
military system of the Romans in his time, which was not far distant
from the time of the battle of the Metaurus. But the subject is beset
with difficulties; and instead of entering into minute but inconclusive
details, I would refer to Gibbon's first chapter as serving for a
general description of the Roman army in its period of perfection, and
remark that the training and armor which the whole legion received in
the time of Augustus were, two centuries earlier, only partially
introduced. Two divisions of troops, called _hastati_ and _principes_,
formed the bulk of each Roman legion in the Second Punic War. Each of
these divisions was twelve hundred strong. The hastatus and the princeps
legionary bore a breastplate or coat of mail, brazen greaves, and a
brazen helmet with a lofty upright crest of scarlet or black feathers.
He had a large oblong shield; and, as weapons of offence, two javelins,
one of which was light and slender, but the other was a strong and
massive weapon, with a shaft about four feet long and an iron head of
equal length. The sword was carried on the right thigh, and was a short
cut-and-thrust weapon, like that which was used by the Spaniards. Thus
armed, the hastati formed the front division of the legion, and the
principes the second. Each division was drawn up about ten deep, a space
of three feet being allowed between the files as well as the ranks, so
as to give each legionary ample room for the use of his javelins and of
his sword and shield. The men in the second rank did not stand
immediately behind those in the first rank, but the files were
alternate, like the position of the men on a draught-board. This was
termed the _quincunx_ order.

[Footnote 64: Most probably during the period of his prolonged
consulship, from B.C. 104 to B.C. 101, while he was training his army
against the Cimbri and the Teutons.]

Niebuhr considers that this arrangement enabled the legion to keep up a
shower of javelins on the enemy for some considerable time. He says:
"When the first line had hurled its _pila_, it probably stepped back
between those who stood behind it, and two steps forward restored the
front nearly to its first position; a movement which, on account of the
arrangement of the quincunx, could be executed without losing a moment.
Thus one line succeeded the other in the front till it was time to draw
the swords; nay, when it was found expedient, the lines which had
already been in the front might repeat this change, since the stores of
pila were surely not confined to the two which each soldier took with
him into battle.

"The same charge must have taken place in fighting with the sword,
which, when the same tactics were adopted on both sides, was anything
but a confused _melee_; on the contrary, it was a series of single
combats." He adds that a military man of experience had been consulted
by him on the subject and had given it as his opinion "that the change
of the lines as described above was by no means impracticable; but, in
the absence of the deafening noise of gunpowder, it cannot have had even
any difficulty with well-trained troops."

The third division of the legion was six hundred strong and acted as a
reserve. It was always composed of veteran soldiers, who were called the
_triarii_. Their arms were the same as these of the principes and
hastati, except that each _triarian_ carried a spear instead of
javelins. The rest of the legion consisted of light-armed troops, who
acted as skirmishers. The cavalry of each legion was at this period
about three hundred strong. The Italian allies who were attached to the
legion seem to have been similarly armed and equipped, but their
numerical proportion of cavalry was much larger.

Such was the nature of the forces that advanced on the Roman side to the
battle of the Metaurus. Nero commanded the right wing, Livius the left,
and the praetor Porcius had the command of the centre. "Both Romans and
Carthaginians well understood how much depended upon the fortune of this
day, and how little hope of safety there was for the vanquished. Only
the Romans herein seemed to have had the better in conceit and opinion
that they were to fight with men desirous to have fled from them; and
according to this presumption came Livius the consul, with a proud
bravery, to give charge on the Spaniards and Africans, by whom he was so
sharply entertained that the victory seemed very doubtful. The Africans
and Spaniards were stout soldiers, and well acquainted with the manner
of the Roman fight. The Ligurians also were a hardy nation, and not
accustomed to give ground, which they needed the less, or were able now
to do, being placed in the midst. Livius, therefore, and Porcius found
great opposition; and with great slaughter on both sides prevailed
little or nothing. Besides other difficulties, they were exceedingly
troubled by the elephants, that brake their first ranks and put them in
such disorder as the Roman ensigns were driven to fall back; all this
while Claudius Nero, laboring in vain against a steep hill, was unable
to come to blows with the Gauls that stood opposite him, but out of
danger. This made Hasdrubal the more confident, who, seeing his own left
wing safe, did the more boldly and fiercely make impression on the other
side upon the left wing of the Romans."[65]

[Footnote 65: Sir Walter Raleigh: _Historie of the World_.]

But at last Nero, who found that Hasdrubal refused his left wing, and
who could not overcome the difficulties of the ground in the quarter
assigned to him, decided the battle by another stroke of that military
genius which had inspired his march. Wheeling a brigade of his best men
round the rear of the rest of the Roman army, Nero fiercely charged the
flank of the Spaniards and Africans. The charge was as successful as it
was sudden. Rolled back in disorder upon each other, and overwhelmed by
numbers, the Spaniards and Ligurians died, fighting gallantly to the
last. The Gauls, who had taken little or no part in the strife of the
day, were then surrounded, and butchered almost without resistance.
Hasdrubal, after having, by the confession of his enemies, done all that
a general could do, when he saw that the victory was irreparably lost,
scorning to survive the gallant host which he had led, and to gratify,
as a captive, Roman cruelty and pride, spurred his horse into the midst
of a Roman cohort, and sword in hand, met the death that was worthy of
the son of Hamilcar and the brother of Hannibal.

Success the most complete had crowned Nero's enterprise. Returning as
rapidly as he had advanced, he was again facing the inactive enemies in
the South before they even knew of his march. But he brought with him a
ghastly trophy of what he had done. In the true spirit of that savage
brutality which deformed the Roman national character, Nero ordered
Hasdrubal's head to be flung into his brother's camp. Ten years had
passed since Hannibal had last gazed on those features. The sons of
Hamilcar had then planned their system of warfare against Rome which
they had so nearly brought to successful accomplishment. Year after year
had Hannibal been struggling in Italy, in the hope of one day hailing
the arrival of him whom he had left in Spain, and of seeing his
brother's eye flash with affection and pride at the junction of their
irresistible hosts. He now saw that eye glazed in death, and in the
agony of his heart the great Carthaginian groaned aloud that he
recognized his country's destiny.

Meanwhile, at the tidings of the great battle, Rome at once rose from
the thrill of anxiety and terror to the full confidence of triumph.
Hannibal might retain his hold on Southern Italy for a few years longer,
but the imperial city and her allies were no longer in danger from his
arms; and, after Hannibal's downfall, the great military republic of the
ancient world met in her career of conquest no other worthy competitor.
Byron has termed Nero's march "unequalled," and, in the magnitude of its
consequences, it is so. Viewed only as a military exploit, it remains
unparalleled save by Marlborough's bold march from Flanders to the
Danube in the campaign of Blenheim, and perhaps also by the Archduke
Charles' lateral march in 1796, by which he overwhelmed the French under
Jourdan, and then, driving Moreau through the Black Forest and across
the Rhine, for a while freed Germany from her invaders.


B.C. 202


(Sprung from a colony of Tyre, Carthage, founded about B.C. 800, rapidly
developed, through a wonderful system of colonization, into a dominating
power, her rule extending through Northwestern Africa and Western
Europe. In B.C. 509 Carthage made her first treaty with Rome. But the
rivalry which grew up between the two Powers developed into a stubborn
contest for the empire of the world, culminating in the three Punic
wars. The first of these lasted from B.C. 264 to 241; the second, from
B.C. 218 to 201. In the interval between these two wars Rome acquired
the northern part of Italy, whence she sent victorious armies against
the barbarians in Gaul. Meanwhile, under Hamilcar Barcar, the
Carthaginians had effected the conquest of Southern Spain, which they
reduced to the condition of a dependency.

Hamilcar's greater son, Hannibal, was compelled by his father to swear
eternal enmity to Rome. Having established the Carthaginian empire in
Spain, at the age of twenty-six he took the Spanish city of Saguntum, an
ally of Rome, and this was the immediate cause of the Second Punic War,
which the Romans declared. The passage of the Alps by Hannibal is
regarded as one of the greatest military performances in history. He was
welcomed by the Gauls as a deliverer, and was soon operating in Northern
Italy, his appearance there being a complete surprise to the Romans. He
won victories over them at the rivers Ticinus and Trebia, B.C. 218;
another in 217 at Lake Trasimenus; a great triumph at Cannae in 216;
took Capua in the same year, and wintered there; in 212 captured
Tarentum; marched against Rome in 211; and in 203 was recalled to

In the mean time the Romans had decided to carry the war into Africa,
although in 215 they had beaten Hannibal, and in 211 had retaken Capua.
Publius Cornelius Scipio [Scipio Africanus Major] in B.C. 210-206 drove
the Carthaginians out of Spain. In 205 he was made consul, and the next
year invaded Africa. Landing on the coast, he was met by the forces of
the Numidian King, who became his allies against Carthage. In 203 he
defeated Syphax and Hasdrubal. Hannibal now having returned to Carthage,
he took command of the forces which she opposed to the Roman invaders,
but in B.C. 202 suffered final overthrow at Zama, in the battle that
ended the Second Punic War. Livy's account of the closing scenes of that
war, which here follows, gives the reader a clear understanding of the
sequence and conclusion of the events related.)

Marcus Servilius and Tiberius Claudius, having assembled the senate,
consulted them respecting the provinces. As both were desirous of having
Africa, they wished Italy and Africa to be disposed of by lots; but,
principally in consequence of the exertions of Quintus Metellus, Africa
was neither assigned to anyone nor withheld. The consuls were ordered to
make application to the tribunes of the people, to the effect that, if
they thought proper, they should put it to the people to decide whom
they wished to conduct the war in Africa. All the tribes nominated
Publius Scipio. Nevertheless, the consuls put the province of Africa to
the lot, for so the senate had decreed. Africa fell to the lot of
Tiberius Claudius, who was to cross over into Africa with a fleet of
fifty ships, all quinqueremes, and have an equal command with Scipio.
Marcus Servilius obtained Etruria. Caius Servilius was continued in
command in the same province, in case the senate resolved that the
consul should remain at the city. Of the praetors, Marcus Sextus
obtained Gaul, which province, together with two legions, Publius
Quinctilius Varus was to deliver to him; Caius Livius obtained Bruttium,
with the two legions which Publius Sempronius, the proconsul, had
commanded the former year; Cneius Tremellius had Sicily, and was to
receive the province and two legions from Publius Villius Tappulus, a
praetor of the former year; Villius, as propraetor, was to protect the
coast of Sicily with twenty men-of-war and a thousand soldiers; and
Marcus Pomponius was to convey thence to Rome one thousand five hundred
soldiers, with the remaining twenty ships. The city jurisdiction fell to
Caius Aurelius Cotta; and the rest of the praetors were continued in
command of the respective provinces and armies which they then had. Not
more than sixteen legions were employed this year in the defence of the
empire. And, that they might have the gods favorably disposed toward
them in all their undertakings and proceedings, it was ordered that the
consuls, before they set out to the war, should celebrate those games
and sacrifice those victims of the larger sort which, in the consulate
of Marcus Claudius Marcellus and Titus Quinctius, Titus Manlius the
dictator had vowed, provided the commonwealth should continue in the
same state for the next five years. The games were exhibited in the
circus during four days, and the victims sacrificed to those deities to
whom they had been vowed.

Meanwhile, hope and anxiety daily and simultaneously increased; nor
could the minds of men be brought to any fixed conclusion, whether it
was a fit subject for rejoicing that Hannibal had now at length, after
the sixteenth year, departed from Italy and left the Romans in the
unmolested possession of it or whether they had not greater cause to
fear from his having transported his army in safety into Africa. They
said that the scene of action certainly was changed, but not the danger.
That Quintus Fabius, lately deceased, who had foretold how arduous the
contest would be, was used to predict, not without good reason, that
Hannibal would prove a more formidable enemy in his own country than he
had been in a foreign one; and that Scipio would have to encounter, not
Syphax, a king of undisciplined barbarians whose armies Statorius, a man
little better than a soldier's drudge, was used to lead, nor his
father-in-law Hasdrubal, that most fugacious general, nor tumultuary
armies hastily collected out of a crowd of half-armed rustics, but
Hannibal, born in a manner in the pavilion of his father, that bravest
of generals, nurtured and educated in the midst of arms, who served as a
soldier formerly, when a boy, and became a general when he had scarcely
attained the age of manhood; who, having grown old in victory, had
filled Spain, Gaul, and Italy, from the Alps to the strait, with
monuments of his vast achievements; who commanded troops who had served
as long as he had himself; troops hardened by the endurance of every
species of suffering, such as it is scarcely credible that men could
have supported; stained a thousand times with Roman blood, and bearing
with them the spoils not only of soldiers, but of generals. That many
would meet the eyes of Scipio in battle who had with their own hands
slain Roman praetors, generals, and consuls; many decorated with crowns
in reward for having scaled walls and crossed ramparts; many who had
traversed the captured camps and cities of the Romans. That the
magistrates of the Roman people had not then so many fasces as Hannibal
could have carried before him, having taken them from generals whom he
had slain. While their minds were harassed by these apprehensions, their
anxiety and fears were further increased from the circumstance that,
whereas they had been accustomed to carry on war for several years in
different parts of Italy, and within their view, with languid hopes and
without the prospect of bringing it to a speedy termination, Scipio and
Hannibal had stimulated the minds of all, as generals prepared for a
final contest. Even those persons whose confidence in Scipio and hopes
of victory were great, were affected with anxiety, increasing in
proportion as they saw their completion approaching. The state of
feeling among the Carthaginians was much the same; for when they turned
their eyes on Hannibal, and the greatness of his achievements, they
repented having solicited peace; but when again they reflected that they
had been twice defeated in a pitched battle, that Syphax had been made
prisoner, that they had been driven out of Spain and Italy, and that all
this had been effected by the valor and conduct of Scipio alone, they
regarded him with horror, as a general marked out by destiny, and born
for their destruction.

Hannibal had by this time arrived at Adrumetum, from which place, after
employing a few days there in refreshing his soldiers, who had suffered
from the motion by sea, he proceeded by forced marches to Zama, roused
by the alarming statements of messengers who brought word that all the
country around Carthage was filled with armed troops. Zama is distant
from Carthage a five days' journey. Some spies whom he sent out from
this place, being intercepted by the Roman guard and brought before
Scipio, he directed that they should be handed over to the military
tribunes, and after having been desired fearlessly to survey everything,
to be conducted through the camp wherever they chose; then, asking them
whether they had examined everything to their satisfaction, he assigned
them an escort and sent them back to Hannibal.

Hannibal received none of the circumstances which were reported to him
with feelings of joy, for they brought word that, as it happened,
Masinissa had joined the enemy that very day with six thousand infantry
and four thousand horse; but he was principally dispirited by the
confidence of his enemy, which, doubtless, was not conceived without
some ground. Accordingly, though he himself was the originator of the
war, and by his coming had upset the truce which had been entered into,
and cut off all hopes of a treaty, yet concluding that more favorable
terms might be obtained if he solicited peace while his strength was
unimpaired than when vanquished, he sent a message to Scipio requesting
permission to confer with him.

Scipio took up his position not far from the city of Naragara, in a
situation convenient not only for other purposes, but also because there
was a watering-place within a dart's throw. Hannibal took possession of
an eminence four miles thence, safe and convenient in every respect,
except that he had a long way to go for water. Here in the intermediate
space a place was chosen open to view from all sides, that there might
be no opportunity for treachery.

Their armed attendants having retired to an equal distance, they met,
each attended by one interpreter, being the greatest generals not only
of their own times, but of any to be found in the records of the times
preceding them, and equal to any of the kings or generals of any nation
whatever. When they came within sight of each other they remained silent
for a short time, thunderstruck, as it were, with mutual admiration. At
length Hannibal thus began: "Since fate hath so ordained it that I, who
was the first to wage war upon the Romans, and who have so often had
victory almost within my reach, should voluntarily come to sue for
peace, I rejoice that it is you, above all others, from whom it is my
lot to solicit it. To you, also, amid the many distinguished events of
your life, it will not be esteemed one of the least glorious that
Hannibal, to whom the gods had so often granted victory over the Roman
generals, should have yielded to you; and that you should have put an
end to this war, which has been rendered remarkable by your calamities
before it was by ours.

"Peace is proposed at a time when you have the advantage. We who
negotiate it are the persons whom it most concerns to obtain it, and we
are persons whose arrangements, be they what they will, our states will
ratify. You have recovered Spain, which had been lost, after driving
thence four Carthaginian armies. When elected consul, though all others
wanted courage to defend Italy, you crossed over into Africa, where
having cut to pieces two armies, having at once captured and burnt two
camps in the same hour, having made prisoner Syphax, a most powerful
king, and seized so many towns of his dominions and so many of ours, you
have dragged me from Italy, the possession of which I had firmly held
for now sixteen years. While your affairs are in a favorable and ours in
a dubious state, you would derive honor and splendor from granting
peace; while to us, who solicit it, it would be considered as necessary
rather than honorable.

"It is indeed the right of him who grants, and not of him who solicits
it, to dictate the terms of peace, but perhaps we may not be unworthy to
impose upon ourselves the fine. We do not refuse that all those
possessions on account of which the war was begun should be yours;
Sicily, Sardinia, Spain, with all the islands lying in any part of the
sea, between Africa and Italy. Let us Carthaginians, confined within the
shores of Africa, behold you, since such is the pleasure of the gods,
extending your empire over foreign nations both by sea and land. I
cannot deny that you have reason to suspect the Carthaginian faith, in
consequence of their insincerity lately in soliciting a peace and while
awaiting the decision. The sincerity with which a peace will be observed
depends much, Scipio, on the person by whom it is sought. Your senate,
as I hear, refused to grant a peace in some measure because the deputies
were deficient in respectability. It is I, Hannibal, who now solicit
peace; who would neither ask for it unless I believed it expedient, nor
will I fail to observe it for the same reason of expedience on account
of which I have solicited it. And in the same manner as I, because the
war was commenced by me, brought it to pass that no one regretted it
till the gods began to regard me with displeasure; so will I also exert
myself that no one may regret the peace procured by my means."

In answer to these things the Roman general spoke nearly to the
following effect: "I was aware that it was in consequence of the
expectation of your arrival that the Carthaginians violated the existing
faith of the truce and broke off all hope of a peace. Nor, indeed, do
you conceal the fact, inasmuch as you artfully withdraw from the former
conditions of peace every concession except what relates to those things
which have for a long time been in our own power. But as it is your
object that your countrymen should be sensible how great a burden they
are relieved from by your means, so it is incumbent upon me to endeavor
that they may not receive, as the reward of their perfidy, the
concessions which they formerly stipulated, by expunging them now from
the conditions of the peace. Though you do not deserve to be allowed the
same conditions as before, you now request even to be benefited by your

"Neither did our fathers first make war respecting Sicily, nor did we
respecting Spain. In the former case the danger which threatened our
allies the Mamertines, and in the present the destruction of Saguntum,
girded us with just and pious arms. That you were the aggressors, both
you yourselves confess and the gods are witnesses, who determined the
issue of the former war, and who are now determining and will determine
the issue of the present according to right and justice. As to myself, I
am not forgetful of the instability of human affairs, but consider the
influence of fortune, and am well aware that all our measures are liable
to a thousand casualties. But as I should acknowledge that my conduct
would savor of insolence and oppression if I rejected you on your coming
in person to solicit peace before I crossed over into Africa, you
voluntarily retiring from Italy, and after you had embarked your troops,
so now, when I have dragged you into Africa almost by manual force,
notwithstanding your resistance and evasions, I am not bound to treat
you with any respect. Wherefore, if in addition to those stipulations on
which it was considered that a peace would at that time have been agreed
upon, and what they are you are informed, a compensation is proposed for
having seized our ships together with their stores during a truce, and
for the violence offered to our ambassadors, I shall then have matter to
lay before my council. But if these things also appear oppressive,
prepare for war, since you could not brook the conditions of peace."

Thus, without effecting an accommodation, when they had returned from
the conference to their armies, they informed them that words had been
bandied to no purpose, that the question must be decided by arms, and
that they must accept that fortune which the gods assigned them.

When they had arrived at their camps, they both issued orders that their
soldiers should get their arms in readiness and prepare their minds for
the final contest; in which, if fortune should favor them, they would
continue victorious, not for a single day, but forever. "Before
to-morrow night," they said, "they would know whether Rome or Carthage
should give laws to the world, and that neither Africa nor Italy, but
the whole world, would be the prize of victory. That the dangers which
threatened those who had the misfortune to be defeated were proportioned
to the rewards of the victors." For the Romans had not any place of
refuge in an unknown and foreign land, and immediate destruction seemed
to await Carthage if the troops which formed her last reliance were
defeated. To this important contest, the day following, two generals, by
far the most renowned of any, and belonging to two of the most powerful
nations in the world, advanced either to crown or overthrow on that day
the many honors they had previously acquired.

Scipio drew up his troops, posting the hastati in front, the principes
behind them, and closing his rear line with the triarii. He did not draw
up his cohorts in close order, but each before their respective
standards; placing the companies at some distance from each other, so as
to leave a space through which the elephants of the enemy passing might
not at all break their ranks. Laelius, whom he had employed before as
lieutenant-general, but this year as quaestor, by special appointment,
according to a decree of the senate, he posted with the Italian cavalry
in the left wing, Masinissa and the Numidians in the right. The open
spaces between the companies of those in the van he filled with velites,
which then formed the Roman light-armed troops, with an injunction that
on the charge of the elephants they should either retire behind the
files, which extended in a right line, or, running to the right and left
and placing themselves by the side of those in the van, afford a passage
by which the elephants might rush in between weapons on both sides.

Hannibal, in order to terrify the enemy, drew up his elephants in front,
and he had eighty of them, being more than he had ever had in any
battle; behind these his Ligurian and Gallic auxiliaries, with
Balearians and Moors intermixed. In the second line he placed the
Carthaginians, Africans, and a legion of Macedonians; then, leaving a
moderate interval, he formed a reserve of Italian troops, consisting
principally of Bruttians, more of whom had followed him on his departure
from Italy by compulsion and necessity than by choice. His cavalry also
he placed in the wings, the Carthaginian occupying the right, the
Numidian the left. Various were the means of exhortation employed in an
army consisting of a mixture of so many different kinds of men; men
differing in language, customs, laws, arms, dress, and appearance, and
in the motives for serving. To the auxiliaries, the prospect both of
their present pay and many times more from the spoils was held out. The
Gauls were stimulated by their peculiar and inherent animosity against
the Romans. To the Ligurians the hope was held out of enjoying the
fertile plains of Italy, and quitting their rugged mountains, if
victorious. The Moors and Numidians were terrified with subjection to
the government of Masinissa, which he would exercise with despotic

Different grounds of hope and fear were represented to different
persons. The view of the Carthaginians was directed to the walls of
their city, their household gods, the sepulchres of their ancestors,
their children and parents, and their trembling wives; they were told
that either the destruction of their city and slavery or the empire of
the world awaited them; that there was nothing intermediate which they
could hope for or fear.

While the general was thus busily employed among the Carthaginians, and
the captains of the respective nations among their countrymen, most of
them employing interpreters among troops intermixed with those of
different nations, the trumpets and cornets of the Romans sounded; and
such a clamor arose that the elephants, especially those in the left
wing, turned round upon their own party, the Moors and Numidians.
Masinissa had no difficulty in increasing the alarm of the terrified
enemy, and deprived them of the aid of their cavalry in that wing. A
few, however, of the beasts which were driven against the enemy, and
were not turned back through fear, made great havoc among the ranks of
the velites, though not without receiving many wounds themselves; for
when the velites, retiring to the companies, had made way for the
elephants, that they might not be trampled down, they discharged their
darts at them; exposed as they were to wounds on both sides, those in
the van also keeping up a continual discharge of javelins, until driven
out of the Roman line by the weapons which fell upon them from all
quarters, these elephants also put to flight even the cavalry of the
Carthaginians posted in their right wing. Laelius, when he saw the enemy
in disorder, struck additional terror into them in their confusion.

The Carthaginian line was deprived of the cavalry on both sides, when
the infantry, who were now not a match for the Romans in confidence or
strength, engaged. In addition to this there was one circumstance,
trifling in itself, but at the same time producing important
consequences in the action. On the part of the Romans the shout was
uniform, and on that account louder and more terrific, while the voices
of the enemy, consisting as they did of many nations of different
languages, were dissonant. The Romans used the stationary kind of fight,
pressing upon the enemy with their own weight and that of their arms;
but on the other side there was more of skirmishing and rapid movement
than force. Accordingly, on the first charge, the Romans immediately
drove back the line of their opponents; then pushing them with their
elbows and the bosses of their shields, and pressing forward into the
places from which they had pushed them, they advanced a considerable
space, as though there had been no one to resist them, those who formed
the rear urging forward those in front when they perceived the line of
the enemy giving way, which circumstance itself gave great additional
force in repelling them.

On the side of the enemy, the second line, consisting of the Africans
and Carthaginians, were so far from supporting the first line when
giving ground, that on the contrary they even retired, lest their enemy,
by slaying those who made a firm resistance, should penetrate to
themselves also. Accordingly the auxiliaries suddenly turned their
backs, and facing about upon their own party, fled, some of them into
the second line, while others slew those who did not receive them into
their ranks, since before they did not support them, and now refused to
receive them. And now there were, in a manner, two contests going on
together, the Carthaginians being compelled to fight at once with the
enemy and with their own party. Not even then, however, did they receive
into their line the terrified and exasperated troops, but, closing their
ranks, drove them out of the scene of action to the wings and the
surrounding plain, lest they should mingle these soldiers, terrified
with defeat and wounds, with that part of their line which was firm and

But such a heap of men and arms had filled the space in which the
auxiliaries a little while ago had stood that it was almost more
difficult to pass through it than through a close line of troops. The
spearmen, therefore, who formed the front line, pursuing the enemy as
each could find a way through the heap of arms and men and streams of
blood, threw into complete disorder the battalions and companies. The
standards also of the principes had begun to waver when they saw the
line before them driven from their ground. Scipio, perceiving this,
promptly ordered the signal to be given for the spearmen to retreat, and
having taken his wounded into the rear, brought the principes and
triarii to the wings in order that the line of spearmen in the centre
might be more strong and secure. Thus a fresh and renewed battle
commenced, inasmuch as they had penetrated to their real antagonists,
men equal to them in the nature of their arms, in their experience in
war, in the fame of their achievements, and the greatness of their hopes
and fears. But the Romans were superior both in numbers and courage, for
they had now routed both the cavalry and the elephants, and, having
already defeated the front line, were fighting against the second.

Laelius and Masinissa, who had pursued the routed cavalry through a
considerable space, returning very opportunely, charged the rear of the
enemy's line. This attack of the cavalry at length routed them. Many of
them, being surrounded, were slain in the field; and many, dispersed in
flight through the open plain around, were slain on all hands, as the
cavalry were in possession of every part. Of the Carthaginians and their
allies, above twenty thousand were slain on that day; about an equal
number were captured, with a hundred and thirty-three military standards
and eleven elephants. Of the victors as many as two thousand fell.

Hannibal, slipping off during the confusion, with a few horsemen, came
to Adrumetum, not quitting the field till he had tried every expedient
both in the battle and before the engagement; having, according to the
admission of Scipio and everyone skilled in military science, acquired
the fame of having marshalled his troops on that day with singular
judgment. He placed his elephants in the front, in order that their
desultory attack and insupportable violence might prevent the Romans
from following their standards and preserving their ranks, on which they
placed their principal dependence. Then he posted his auxiliaries before
the line of Carthaginians, in order that men who were made up of the
refuse of all nations, and who were not bound by honor but by gain,
might not have any retreat open to them in case they fled; at the same
time that the first ardor and impetuosity might be exhausted upon them,
and, if they could render no other service, that the weapons of the
enemy might be blunted in wounding them. Next he placed the Carthaginian
and African soldiers, on whom he placed all his hopes, in order that,
being equal to the enemy in every other respect, they might have the
advantage of them inasmuch as, being fresh and unimpaired in strength
themselves, they would fight with those who were fatigued and wounded.
The Italians he removed into the rear, separating them also by an
intervening space, as he knew not with certainty whether they were
friends or enemies. Hannibal, after performing this as it were his last
work of valor, fled to Adrumetum, whence, having been summoned to
Carthage, he returned thither in the sixth and thirtieth year after he
had left it when a boy, and confessed in the senate house that he was
defeated, not only in the battle, but in the war, and that there was no
hope of safety in anything but in obtaining peace.

Immediately after the battle, Scipio, having taken and plundered the
enemy's camp, returned to the sea and his ships with an immense booty,
news having reached him that Publius Lentulus had arrived at Utica with
fifty men-of-war, and a hundred transports laden with every kind of
stores. Concluding that he ought to bring before Carthage everything
which could increase the consternation already existing there, after
sending Laelius to Rome to report his victory, he ordered Cneius
Octavius to conduct the legions thither by land, and setting out himself
from Utica with the fresh fleet of Lentulus added to his former one,
made for the harbor of Carthage. When he had arrived within a short
distance he was met by a Carthaginian ship decked with fillets and
branches of olive. There were ten deputies, the leading men in the
State, sent at the instance of Hannibal to solicit peace, to whom, when
they had come up to the stern of the general's ship, holding out the
badges of suppliants, entreating and imploring the protection and
compassion of Scipio, the only answer given was that they must come to
Tunis, to which place he would move his camp. After taking a view of the
site of Carthage, not so much for the sake of acquainting himself with
it for any present object as to dispirit the enemy, he returned to
Utica, having recalled Octavius to the same place.

As they were proceeding thence to Tunis, they received intelligence that
Vermina, the son of Syphax, with a greater number of horse than foot,
was coming to the assistance of the Carthaginians. A part of his
infantry with all the cavalry having attacked them on their march on the
first day of the Saturnalia, routed the Numidians with little
opposition, and as every way by which they could escape in flight was
blocked up, for the cavalry surrounded them on all sides, fifteen
thousand men were slain, twelve hundred were taken alive, with fifteen
hundred Numidian horses and seventy-two military standards. The prince
himself fled from the field with a few attendants during the confusion.
The camp was then pitched near Tunis in the same place as before, and
thirty ambassadors came to Scipio from Carthage. These behaved in a
manner even more calculated to excite compassion than the former, in
proportion as their situation was more pressing; but from the
recollection of their recent perfidy, they were heard with considerably
less pity. In the council, though all were impelled by just resentment
to demolish Carthage, yet, when they reflected upon the magnitude of the
undertaking and the length of time which would be consumed in the siege
of so well fortified and strong a city, while Scipio himself was uneasy
in consequence of the expectation of a successor, who would come in for
the glory of having terminated the war, though it was accomplished
already by the exertions and danger of another, the minds of all were
inclined to peace.

The next day the ambassadors being called in again, and with many
rebukes of their perfidy, warned that instructed by so many disasters
they would at length believe in the existence of the gods and the
obligation of an oath, these conditions of the peace were stated to
them: "That they should enjoy their liberty and live under their own
laws; that they should possess such cities and territories as they had
enjoyed before the war, and with the same boundaries, and that the
Romans should on that day desist from devastation. That they should
restore to the Romans all deserters and fugitives, giving up all their
ships-of-war except ten triremes, with such tamed elephants as they had,
and that they should not tame any more. That they should not carry on
war in or out of Africa without the permission of the Roman people. That
they should make restitution to Masinissa, and form a league with him.
That they should furnish corn, and pay for the auxiliaries until the
ambassadors had returned from Rome. That they should pay ten thousand
talents of silver in equal annual installments distributed over fifty
years. That they should give a hundred hostages, according to the
pleasure of Scipio, not younger than fourteen nor older than thirty.
That he would grant them a truce on condition that the transports,
together with their cargoes, which had been seized during the former
truce, were restored. Otherwise they would have no truce, nor any hope
of a peace." When the ambassadors who were ordered to bear these
conditions home reported them in an assembly, and Gisgo had stood forth
to dissuade them from the terms, and was being listened to by the
multitude, who were at once indisposed for peace and unfit for war,
Hannibal, indignant that such language should be held and listened to at
such a juncture, laid hold of Gisgo with his own hand and dragged him
from his elevated position.

This unusual sight in a free State having raised a murmur among the
people, the soldier, disconcerted at the liberties which the citizens
took, thus addressed them: "Having left you when nine years old, I have
returned after a lapse of thirty-six years. I flatter myself I am well
acquainted with the qualifications of a soldier, having been instructed
in them from my childhood, sometimes by my own situation and sometimes
by that of my country. The privileges, the laws, and customs of the city
and the forum you ought to teach me." Having thus apologized for his
indiscretion, he discoursed largely concerning the peace, showing how
inoppressive the terms were, and how necessary it was. The greatest
difficulty was that of the ships which had been seized during the truce
nothing was to be found except the ships themselves, nor was it easy to
collect the property, because those who were charged with having it were
opposed to the peace. It was resolved that the ships should be restored
and that the men at least should be looked up; and as to whatever else
was missing, that it should be left to Scipio to put a value upon it,
and that the Carthaginians should make compensation accordingly in
money. There are those who say that Hannibal went from the field of
battle to the sea-coast; whence he immediately sailed in a ship, which
he had ready for the purpose, to king Antiochus; and that when Scipio
demanded above everything that Hannibal should be given up to him,
answer was made that Hannibal was not in Africa.

After the ambassadors returned to Scipio, the quaestors were ordered to
give in an account, made out from the public registers, of the public
property which had been in the ships; and the owners to make a return of
the private property. For the amount of the value twenty-five thousand
pounds of silver were required to be paid down; and a truce for three
months was granted to the Carthaginians. It was added that during the
time of the truce they should not send ambassadors anywhere else than to
Rome; and that whatever ambassadors came to Carthage, they should not
dismiss them before informing the Roman general who they were and what
they sought. With the Carthaginian ambassadors, Lucius Veturius Philo,
Marcus Marcius Ralla, and Lucius Scipio, brother of the general, were
sent to Rome.

The Roman, together with the Carthaginian, ambassadors having arrived at
Rome from Africa, the senate was assembled at the temple of Bellona;
when Lucius Veturius Philo stated, to the great joy of the senate, that
a battle had been fought with Hannibal which was decisive of the fate of
the Carthaginians, and that a period was at length put to that
calamitous war. He added what formed a small accession to their
successes, that Vermina, the son of Syphax, had been vanquished. He was
then ordered to go forth to the public assembly and impart the joyful
tidings to the people. Then, a thanksgiving having been appointed, all
the temples in the city were thrown open and supplications for three
days were decreed. Publius Scipio was continued in command in the
province of Africa with the armies which he then had. The Carthaginian
ambassadors were called before the senate. On observing their ages and
dignified appearance, for they were by far the first men of the State,
all promptly declared their conviction that now they were sincere in
their desire to effect a peace. Hasdrubal, however, surnamed by his
countrymen Haedus, who had invariably recommended peace and was opposed
to the Barcine faction, was regarded with greater interest than the

On these accounts the greater weight was attached to him when
transferring the blame of the war from the State at large to the
cupidity of a few. After a speech of varied character, in which he
sometimes refuted the charges which had been brought, at other times
admitted some, lest by imprudently denying what was manifestly true
their forgiveness might be the more difficult; and then, even
admonishing the conscript fathers to be guided by the rules of decorum
and moderation in their prosperity, he said that if the Carthaginians
had listened to himself and Hanno, and had been disposed to make a
proper use of circumstances, they would themselves have dictated terms
of peace, instead of begging it as they now did. That it rarely happened
that good fortune and a sound judgment were bestowed upon men at the
same time. That the Roman people were therefore invincible, because when
successful they forgot not the maxims of wisdom and prudence; and indeed
it would have been matter of astonishment did they act otherwise. That
those persons to whom success was a new and uncommon thing proceeded to
a pitch of madness in their ungoverned transports in consequence of
their not being accustomed to it. That to the Roman people the joy
arising from victory was a matter of common occurrence, and was now
almost become old-fashioned. That they had extended their empire more by
sparing the vanquished than by conquering.

The language employed by the others was of a nature more calculated to
excite compassion; they represented from what a height of power the
Carthaginian affairs had fallen. That nothing besides the walls of
Carthage remained to those who a little time ago held almost the whole
world in subjection by their arms; that shut up within these, they could
see nothing anywhere on sea or land which owned their authority. That
they would retain possession of their city itself and their household
gods only in case the Roman people should refrain from venting their
indignation upon these, which is all that remains for them to do. When
it was manifest that the fathers were moved by compassion, it is said
that one of the senators, violently incensed at the perfidy of the
Carthaginians, immediately asked with a loud voice by what gods they
would swear in striking the league, since they had broken their faith
with those by whom they swore in striking the former one? By those same,
replied Hasdrubal, who have shown such determined hostility to the
violators of treaties.

The minds of all being disposed to peace, Cneius Lentulus, whose
province the fleet was, protested against the decree of the senate. Upon
this, Manius Acilius and Quintus Minucius, tribunes of the people, put
the question to the people whether they willed and ordered that the
senate should decree that peace should be made with the Carthaginians?
whom they ordered to grant that peace, and whom to conduct the army out
of Africa? All the tribes ordered respecting the peace according as the
question had been put. That Publius Scipio should grant the peace, and
that he also should conduct the army home. Agreeably to this order, the
senate decreed that Publius Scipio, acting according to the opinion of
the ten deputies, should make peace with the Carthaginian people on what
terms he pleased. The Carthaginians then returned thanks to the senate,
and requested that they might be allowed to enter the city and converse
with their countrymen who had been made prisoners and were in custody of
the State; observing that some of them were their relations and friends,
and men of rank, and some, persons to whom they were charged with
messages from their relations.

Having obtained these requests, they again asked permission to ransom
such of them as they pleased; when they were desired to give in their
names. Having given in a list of about two hundred, a decree of the
senate was passed to the effect that the Carthaginian ambassadors should
be allowed to take away into Africa to Publius Cornelius Scipio two
hundred of the Carthaginian prisoners, selecting whom they pleased; and
that they should convey to him a message that if the peace were
concluded he should restore them to the Carthaginians without ransom.
The heralds being ordered to go into Africa to strike the league, at
their own desire the senate passed a decree that they should take with
them flint stones of their own and vervain of their own; that the Roman
praetor should command them to strike the league, and that they should
demand of him herbs. The description of herb usually given to the
heralds is taken from the Capitol. Thus the Carthaginians being allowed
to depart from Rome, when they had gone into Africa to Scipio concluded
the peace on the terms before mentioned. They delivered up their
men-of-war, their elephants, deserters, fugitives, and four thousand
prisoners, among whom was Quintus Terentius Culleo, a senator. The ships
he ordered to be taken out into the main and burned. Some say there were
five hundred of every description of those which are worked with oars,
and that the sudden sight of these when burning occasioned as deep a
sensation of grief to the Carthaginians as if Carthage had been in
flames. The measures adopted respecting the deserters were more severe
than those respecting the fugitives. Those who were of the Latin
confederacy were decapitated; the Romans were crucified.

The last peace with the Carthaginians was made forty years before this
in the consulate of Quintus Lutatius and Aulus Manlius. The war
commenced twenty-three years afterward in the consulate of Publius
Cornelius and Tiberius Sempronius. It was concluded in the seventeenth
year, in the consulate of Cneius Cornelius and Publius Aelius Paetus. It
is related that Scipio frequently said afterward, that first the
ambition of Tiberius Claudius, and afterward of Cneius Cornelius, were
the causes which prevented his terminating the war by the destruction of

The Carthaginians finding difficulty in raising the first sum of money
to be paid, as their finances were exhausted by a protracted war, and in
consequence great lamentation and grief arising in the senate house, it
is said that Hannibal was observed laughing, and when Hasdrubal Haedus
rebuked him for laughing amid the public grief, when he himself was the
occasion of the tears which were shed, he said: "If, as the expression
of the countenance is discerned by the sight, so the inward feelings of
the mind could be distinguished, it would clearly appear to you that
that laughter which you censure came from a heart not elated with joy,
but frantic with misfortunes. And yet it is not so ill-timed as those
absurd and inconsistent tears of yours. Then you ought to have wept when
our arms were taken from us, our ships burned, and we were forbidden to
engage in foreign wars, for that was the wound by which we fell. Nor is
it just that you should suppose that the measures which the Romans have
adopted toward you have been dictated by animosity. No great state can
remain at rest long together. If it has no enemy abroad it finds one at
home in the same manner as over-robust bodies seem secure from external
causes, but are encumbered with their own strength. So far, forsooth, we
are affected with the public calamities as they reach our private
affairs; nor is there any circumstance attending them which is felt more
acutely than the loss of money. Accordingly, when the spoils were torn
down from vanquished Carthage, when you beheld her left unarmed and
defenceless amid so many armed nations of Africa, none heaved a sigh.
Now, because a tribute is to be levied from private property you lament
with one accord, as though at the funeral of the State. How much do I
dread lest you should soon be made sensible that you have shed tears
this day for the lightest of your misfortunes!"

Such were the sentiments which Hannibal delivered to the Carthaginians.
Scipio, having summoned an assembly, presented Masinissa, in addition to
his paternal dominions, with the town of Cirta, and the other cities and
territories which had passed from the kingdom of Syphax into the
possession of the Romans. He ordered Cneius Octavius to conduct the
fleet to Sicily and deliver it to Cneius Cornelius the consul, and
directed the Carthaginian ambassadors to go to Rome, that the
arrangements he had made with the advice of the ten deputies might be
ratified by the sanction of the fathers and the order of the people.

Peace having been established by sea and land, he embarked his troops
and crossed over to Lilybaeum in Sicily, whence, having sent a great part
of his soldiers by ships, he himself proceeded through Italy, which was
rejoicing not less on account of the peace than the victory; while not
only the inhabitants of the cities poured out to show him honor, but
crowds of rustics thronged the roads. He arrived at Rome and entered the
city in a triumph of unparalleled splendor. He brought into the treasury
one hundred and twenty-three thousand pounds of silver. He distributed
to each of his soldiers four hundred asses out of the spoils. By the
death of Syphax, which took place but a short time before at Tibur,
whither he had been removed from Alba, a diminution was occasioned in
the interest of the pageant rather than in the glory of him who
triumphed. His death, however, was attended with circumstances which
produced a strong sensation, for he was buried at the public expense.
Polybius, an author by no means to be despised, asserts that this King
was led in the triumph. Quintus Terentius Culleo followed Scipio in his
triumph with a cap of liberty on his head, and during the remainder of
his life treated him with the respect due to him as the author of his
freedom. I have not been able to ascertain whether the partiality of the
soldiers or the favor of the people fixed upon him the surname of
Africanus, or whether in the same manner as Felix was applied to Sulla,
and Magnus to Pompey, in the memory of our fathers, it originated in the
flattery of his friends. He was doubtless the first general who was
distinguished by a name derived from the nation which he had conquered.
Afterward, in imitation of his example, some, by no means his equals in
his victories, affixed splendid inscriptions on their statues and gave
honorable surnames to their families.


B.C. 165


(The noble-minded Judas Maccabaeus was the hero of Jewish independence--
the deliverer of Judea and Judaism during the bloody persecutions of the
Syrian king Antiochus Epiphanes, in the second century B.C. This King
was attempting to destroy in Palestine the national religion. For this
purpose pagan altars were set up among the Jews and pagan sacrifices
enjoined upon the worshippers of Jehovah. Many Jews fled from their own
towns and villages into the uninhabited wilderness, in order that they
might have liberty to worship the God of their fathers; but a few
conformed to the ordinances of Antiochus. Soon, however, open resistance
to the decrees of the pagan ruler began to manifest itself among the

The first protest in the shape of active opposition was made by
Mattathias, a priest living at Modin. When the servants of Antiochus
came to that retired village and commanded Mattathias to do sacrifice to
the heathen gods, he refused; he went so far as to strike down at the
altar a Jew who was preparing to offer such a sacrifice. Then he escaped
to the mountains with his five sons and a band of followers. These
followers grew in numbers and activity, overthrowing pagan altars,
circumcising heathen children, and putting to the sword both apostates
and unbelievers. When Mattathias died, in B.C. 166, he was succeeded as
leader by his son Judas, called Maccabaeus, "the Hammer"; as Charles,
who defeated the Saracens at Tours, is called Martel or hammer.

The successes of Judas were uninterrupted, and culminated B.C. 165 in
the repulse of Lysias, the general of Antiochus, at Bethzur, where a
large Syrian force gathered in the expectation of crushing the patriotic
army of Judas. After this victory Judas led his followers into Jerusalem
and proceeded to restore the Temple and the worship of the national
religion, and to cleanse the Temple from all traces of pagan worship.
The great altar was rebuilt; new sacred vessels provided; and an
eight-days' dedication festival begun on the very day when, three years
before, the altar of Jehovah had been desecrated by a heathen sacrifice.
This Feast of the Dedication was ever afterward observed in the Temple
at Jerusalem and is mentioned in the gospels [John x. 22]. Judas
established a dynasty of priest-kings, which lasted until supplanted by
Herod, with the aid of the Romans, in B.C. 40; and gave by his genuinely
heroic bearing his name to this whole glorious epoch of Jewish history.)

Now at this time there was one whose name was Mattathias, who dwelt at
Modin, the son of John, the son of Simeon, the son of Asamoneus, a
priest of the order of Joarib, and a citizen of Jerusalem. He had five
sons: John, who was called Gaddis, and Simon, who was called Matthes,
and Judas, who was called Maccabaeus,[66] and Eleazar, who was called
Auran, and Jonathan, who was called Apphus. Now this Mattathias lamented
to his children the sad state of their affairs, and the ravage made in
the city, and the plundering of the Temple, and the calamities the
multitude were under; and he told them that it was better for them to
die for the laws of their country than to live so ingloriously as they
then did.

[Footnote 66: That this appellation of Maccabee was not first of all
given to Judas Maccabaeaus, nor was derived from any initial letters of
the Hebrew words on his banner, _Mi Kamoka Be Elim, Jehovah_? ("Who is
like unto thee among the gods, O Jehovah?"), Exod. xv. II, as the modern
rabbins vainly pretend, see _Authent. Rec._, part i., pp. 205, 206. Only
we may note, by the way, that the original name of these Maccabees and
their posterity was Asamoneans, which was derived from Asamoneus, the
great-grandfather of Mattathias, as Josephus here informs us.]

But when those that were appointed by the King were come to Modin that
they might compel the Jews to do what they were commanded, and to enjoin
those that were there to offer sacrifice, as the King had commanded,
they desired that Mattathias, a person of the greatest character among
them, both on other accounts and particularly on account of such a
numerous and so deserving a family of children, would begin the
sacrifice, because his fellow-citizens would follow his example, and
because such a procedure would make him honored by the King. But
Mattathias said that he would not do it, and that if all the other
nations would obey the commands of Antiochus, either out of fear or to
please him, yet would not he nor his sons leave the religious worship of
their country; but as soon as he had ended his speech there came one of
the Jews into the midst of them and sacrificed as Antiochus had
commanded. At which Mattathias had great indignation, and ran upon him
violently with his sons, who had swords with them, and slew both the man
himself that sacrificed and Apelles, the King's general who compelled
him to sacrifice, with a few of his soldiers.

He also overthrew the idol altar and cried out, "If," said he, "anyone
be zealous for the laws of his country and for the worship of God, let
him follow me"; and when he had said this he made haste into the desert
with his sons, and left all his substance in the village. Many others
did the same also, and fled with their children and wives into the
desert and dwelt in caves; but when the King's generals heard this, they
took all the forces they then had in the citadel at Jerusalem, and
pursued the Jews into the desert; and when they had overtaken them, they
in the first place endeavored to persuade them to repent, and to choose
what was most for their advantage and not put them to the necessity of
using them according to the law of war; but when they would not comply
with their persuasions, but continued to be of a different mind, they
fought against them on the Sabbath day, and they burned them as they
were in the caves, without resistance, and without so much as stopping
up the entrances of the caves. And they avoided to defend themselves on
that day because they were not willing to break in upon the honor they
owed the Sabbath, even in such distresses; for our law requires that we
rest upon that day.

There were about a thousand, with their wives and children, who were
smothered and died in these caves; but many of those that escaped joined
themselves to Mattathias and appointed him to be their ruler, who taught
them to fight even on the Sabbath day, and told them that unless they
would do so they would become their own enemies by observing the law [so
rigorously] while their adversaries would still assault them on this
day, and they would not then defend themselves; and that nothing could
then hinder but they must all perish without fighting. This speech
persuaded them, and this rule continues among us to this day, that if
there be a necessity we may fight on Sabbath days. So Mattathias got a
great army about him and overthrew their idol altars and slew those that
broke the laws, even all that he could get under his power; for many of
them were dispersed among the nations round about them for fear of him.
He also commanded that those boys who were not yet circumcised should be
circumcised now; and he drove those away that were appointed to hinder
such their circumcision.

But when he had ruled one year and was fallen into a distemper, he
called for his sons and set them round about him, and said: "O my sons,
I am going the way of all the earth; and I recommend to you my
resolution and beseech you not to be negligent in keeping it, but to be
mindful of the desires of him who begat you and brought you up, and to
preserve the customs of your country, and to recover your ancient form
of government which is in danger of being overturned, and not to be
carried away with those that either by their own inclination or out of
necessity betray it, but to become such sons as are worthy of me; to be
above all force and necessity, and so to dispose your souls as to be
ready when it shall be necessary to die for your laws, as sensible of
this, by just reasoning, that if God see that you are so disposed he
will not overlook you, but will have a great value for your virtue, and
will restore to you again what you have lost and will return to you that
freedom in which you shall live quietly and enjoy your own customs.

"Your bodies are mortal and subject to fate; but they receive a sort of
immortality by the remembrance of what actions they have done; and I
would have you so in love with this immortality that you may pursue
after glory, and that when you have undergone the greatest difficulties
you may not scruple for such things to lose your lives. I exhort you
especially to agree one with another, and in what excellency any one of
you exceeds another, to yield to him so far, and by that means to reap
the advantage of everyone's own virtues. Do you then esteem Simon as
your father because he is a man of extraordinary prudence, and be
governed by him in what counsels he gives you. Take Maccabaeus for the
general of your army, because of his courage and strength, for he will
avenge your nation and will bring vengeance on your enemies. Admit among
you the righteous and religious, and augment their power."

When Mattathias had thus discoursed to his sons and had prayed to God to
be their assistant and to recover to the people their former
constitution, he died a little afterward, and was buried at Modin, all
the people making great lamentation for him. Whereupon his son Judas
took upon him the administration of public affairs, in the hundred and
forty-sixth year; and thus, by the ready assistance of his brethren and
of others, Judas cast their enemies out of the country and put those of
their own country to death who had transgressed its laws, and purified
the land of all the pollutions that were in it.

When Apollonius, the general of the Samaritan forces, heard this he took
his army and made haste to go against Judas, who met him and joined
battle with him, and beat him and slew many of his men, and among them
Apollonius himself, their general, whose sword, being that which he
happened then to wear, he seized upon and kept for himself; but he
wounded more than he slew, and took a great deal of prey from the
enemy's camp, and went his way; but when Seron, who was general of the
army of Celesyria, heard that many had joined themselves to Judas, and
that he had about him an army sufficient for fighting and for making
war, he determined to make an expedition against him, as thinking it
became him to endeavor to punish those that transgressed the King's
injunctions. He then got together an army as large as he was able, and
joined to it the renegade and wicked Jews, and came against Judas.

He then came as far as Bethoron, a village of Judea, and there pitched
his camp; upon which Judas met him, and when he intended to give him
battle he saw that his soldiers were backward to fight because their
number was small and because they wanted food, for they were fasting. He
encouraged them and said to them that victory and conquest of enemies
are not derived from the multitude in armies, but in the exercise of
piety toward God; and that they had the plainest instances in their
forefathers, who, by their righteousness and exerting themselves on
behalf of their own laws and their own children, had frequently
conquered many ten thousands, for innocence is the strongest army. By
this speech he induced his men to contemn the multitude of the enemy,
and to fall upon Seron; and upon joining battle with him he beat the
Syrians; and when their general fell among the rest they all ran away
with speed, as thinking that to be their best way of escaping. So he
pursued them unto the plain and slew about eight hundred of the enemy,
but the rest escaped to the region which lay near to the sea.

When king Antiochus heard of these things he was very angry at what had
happened; so he got together all his own army, with many mercenaries
whom he had hired from the islands, and took them with him, and prepared
to break into Judea about the beginning of the spring; but when, upon
his mustering his soldiers, he perceived that his treasures were
deficient, and there was a want of money in them, for all the taxes were
not paid, by reason of the seditions there had been among the nations,
he having been so magnanimous and so liberal that what he had was not
sufficient for him, he therefore resolved first to go into Persia and
collect the taxes of that country. Hereupon he left one whose name was
Lysias, who was in great repute with him, governor of the kingdom, as
far as the bounds of Egypt and of the Lower Asia and reaching from the
river Euphrates, and committed to him a certain part of his forces and
of his elephants and charged him to bring up his son Antiochus with all
possible care until he came back; and that he should conquer Judea and
take its inhabitants for slaves and utterly destroy Jerusalem, and
abolish the whole nation; and when king Antiochus had given these things
in charge to Lysias, he went into Persia, and in the hundred and
forty-seventh year he passed over Euphrates and went to the superior

Upon this Lysias chose Ptolemy the son of Dorymenes, and Nicanor, and
Gorgias, very potent men among the King's friends, and delivered to them
forty thousand foot-soldiers and seven thousand horsemen, and sent them
against Judea, who came as far as the city Emmaus and pitched their camp
in the plain country. There came also to them auxiliaries out of Syria
and the country round about, as also many of the renegade Jews; and
besides these came some merchants to buy those that should be carried
captives--having bonds with them to bind those that should be made
prisoners--with that silver and gold which they were to pay for their
price; and when Judas saw their camp and how numerous their enemies
were, he persuaded his own soldiers to be of good courage, and exhorted
them to place their hopes of victory in God and to make supplication to
him, according to the custom of their country, clothed in sackcloth, and
to show what was their usual habit of supplication in the greatest
dangers, and thereby to prevail with God to grant them the victory over
their enemies. So he set them in their ancient order of battle used by
their forefathers, under their captains of thousands, and other
officers, and dismissed such as were newly married, as well as those
that had newly gained possessions, that they might not fight in a
cowardly manner out of an inordinate love of life, in order to enjoy
those blessings.

When he had thus disposed his soldiers he encouraged them to fight by
the following speech, which he made to them: "O my fellow-soldiers, no
other time remains more opportune than the present for courage and
contempt of dangers; for if you now fight manfully you may recover your
liberty, which, as it is a thing of itself agreeable to all men, so it
proves to be to us much more desirable, by its affording us the liberty
of worshipping God. Since, therefore, you are in such circumstances at
present, you must either recover that liberty and so regain a happy and
blessed way of living, which is that according to our laws and the
customs of our country, or to submit to the most opprobrious sufferings;
nor will any seed of your nation remain if you be beat in this battle.
Fight therefore manfully, and suppose that you must die though you do
not fight; but believe that besides such glorious rewards as those of
the liberty of your country, of your laws, of your religion, you shall
then obtain everlasting glory. Prepare yourselves, therefore, and put
yourselves into such an agreeable posture that you may be ready to fight
with the enemy as soon as it is day to-morrow morning."

And this was the speech which Judas made to encourage them. But when the
enemy sent Gorgias with five thousand foot and one thousand horse, that
he might fall upon Judas by night, and had for that purpose certain of
the renegade Jews as guides, the son of Mattathias perceived it and
resolved to fall upon those enemies that were in their camp, now their
forces were divided. When they had therefore supped in good time and had
left many fires in their camp he marched all night to those enemies that
were at Emmaus; so that when Gorgias found no enemy in their camp, but
suspected that they were retired and had hidden themselves among the
mountains, he resolved to go and seek them wheresoever they were.

But about break of day Judas appeared to those enemies that were at
Emmaus, with only three thousand men, and those ill-armed by reason of
their poverty; and when he saw the enemy very well and skilfully
fortified in their camp he encouraged the Jews and told them that they
ought to fight, though it were with their naked bodies, for that God had
sometimes of old given such men strength, and that against such as were
more in number, and were armed also, out of regard to their great
courage. So he commanded the trumpeters to sound for the battle, and by
thus falling upon the enemy when they did not expect it, and thereby
astonishing and disturbing their minds, he slew many of those that
resisted him and went on pursuing the rest as far as Gadara and the
plains of Idumea, and Ashdod, and Jamnia; and of these there fell about
three thousand. Yet did Judas exhort his soldiers not to be too desirous
of the spoils, for that still they must have a contest and battle with
Gorgias and the forces that were with him, but that when they had once
overcome them then they might securely plunder the camp because they
were the only enemies remaining, and they expected no others.

And just as he was speaking to his soldiers, Gorigas' men looked down
into that army which they left in their camp and saw that it was
overthrown and the camp burned; for the smoke that arose from it showed
them, even when they were a great way off, what had happened. When,
therefore, those that were with Gorgias understood that things were in
this posture, and perceived that those that were with Judas were ready
to fight them, they also were affrighted and put to flight; but then
Judas, as though he had already beaten Gorgias' soldiers without
fighting, returned and seized on the spoils. He took a great quantity of
gold and silver and purple and blue, and then returned home with joy,
and singing hymns to God for their good success; for this victory
greatly contributed to the recovery of their liberty.

Hereupon Lysias was confounded at the defeat of the army which he had
sent, and the next year he got together sixty thousand chosen men. He
also took five thousand horsemen and fell upon Judea, and he went up to
the hill country of Bethsur, a village of Judea, and pitched his camp
there, where Judas met him with ten thousand men; and when he saw the
great number of his enemies, he prayed to God that he would assist him,
and joined battle with the first of the enemy that appeared and beat
them and slew about five thousand of them, and thereby became terrible
to the rest of them. Nay, indeed, Lysias observing the great spirit of
the Jews, how they were prepared to die rather than lose their liberty,
and being afraid of their desperate way of fighting, as if it were real
strength, he took the rest of the army back with him and returned to

When, therefore, the generals of Antiochus' armies had been beaten so
often, Judas assembled the people together, and told them that after
these many victories which God had given them, they ought to go up to
Jerusalem and purify the Temple and offer the appointed sacrifices. But
as soon as he with the whole multitude was come to Jerusalem and found
the Temple deserted and its gates burned down and plants growing in the
Temple of their own accord on account of its desertion, he and those
that were with him began to lament and were quite confounded at the
sight of the Temple; so he chose out some of his soldiers and gave them
orders to fight against those guards that were in the citadel until he
should have purified the Temple. When therefore he had carefully purged
it and had brought in new vessels, the candlestick, the table [of
shewbread], and the altar [of incense], which were made of gold, he hung
up the veils at the gates and added doors to them.

He also took down the altar [of burnt-offering], and built a new one of
stones that he gathered together and not of such as were hewn with iron
tools. So on the five-and-twentieth day of the month of Casleu, which
the Macedonians call Apelleus, they lighted the lamps that were on the
candlestick and offered incense upon the altar [of incense], and laid
the loaves upon the table [of shew-bread], and offered burnt-offerings
upon the new altar [of burnt-offering]. Now it so fell out that these
things were done on the very same day on which their divine worship had
fallen off and was reduced to a profane and common use after three
years' time; for so it was, that the Temple was made desolate by
Antiochus, and so continued for three years. This desolation happened to
the Temple in the hundred forty and fifth year, on the twenty-fifth day
of the month Apelleus, and on the hundred and fifty-third Olympiad; but
it was dedicated anew, on the same day, the twenty-fifth of the month
Apelleus, in the hundred and forty-eighth year, and on the hundred and
fifty-fourth Olympiad. And this desolation came to pass according to the
prophecy of Daniel, which was given four hundred and eight years before,
for he declared that the Macedonians would dissolve that worship [for
some time].

Now Judas celebrated the festival of the restoration of the sacrifices
of the Temple for eight days, and omitted no sort of pleasures thereon;
but he feasted them upon very rich and splendid sacrifices, and he
honored God and delighted them by hymns and psalms. Nay, they were so
very glad at the revival of their customs, when after a long time of
intermission they unexpectedly had regained the freedom of their
worship, that they made it a law for their posterity that they should
keep a festival, on account of the restoration of their Temple worship,
for eight days. And from that time to this we celebrate this festival
and call it Lights. I suppose the reason was, because this liberty
beyond our hopes appeared to us, and that thence was the name given to
that festival. Judas also rebuilt the walls round about the city, and
reared towers of great height against the incursions of enemies, and set
guards therein. He also fortified the city Bethsura that it might serve
as a citadel against any distresses that might come from our enemies.

When these things were over, the nations round about the Jews were very
uneasy at the revival of their power and rose up together and destroyed
many of them, as gaining advantage over them by laying snares for them
and making secret conspiracies against them. Judas made perpetual
expeditions against these men, and endeavored to restrain them from
those incursions and to prevent the mischiefs they did to the Jews. So
he fell upon the Idumeans, the posterity of Esau, at Acra-battene, and
slew a great many of them and took their spoils. He also shut up the
sons of Bean, that laid wait for the Jews; and he sat down about them,
and besieged them, and burned their towers and destroyed the men [that
were in them]. After this he went thence in haste against the Ammonites
who had a great and a numerous army, of which Timotheus was the
commander. And when he had subdued them he seized on the city of Jazer,
and took their wives and their children captives and burned the city and
then returned into Judea. But when the neighboring nations understood
that he was returned they got together in great numbers in the land of
Gilead and came against those Jews that were at their borders, who then
fled to the garrison of Dathema, and sent to Judas to inform him that
Timotheus was endeavoring to take the place whither they were fled. And
as these epistles were reading, there came other messengers out of
Galilee who informed him that the inhabitants of Ptolemais, and of Tyre
and Sidon, and strangers of Galilee, were gotten together.

Accordingly Judas, upon considering what was fit to be done with
relation to the necessity both these cases required, gave order that
Simon his brother should take three thousand chosen men and go to the
assistance of the Jews in Galilee, while he and another of his brothers,
Jonathan, made haste into the land of Gilead with eight thousand
soldiers. And he left Joseph, the son of Zacharias, and Azarias, to be
over the rest of the forces, and charged them to keep Judea very
carefully and to fight no battles with any persons whomsoever until his
return. Accordingly Simon went into Galilee and fought the enemy and put


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