History Main / PunicWars

2nd Sep '13 8:17:26 AM Frank75
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[[quoteright:350:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/general-hannibal-2_165.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:350:Hannibal crossing the Alps]]

->''"Ceterum censeo Carthaginem esse delendam."''
->''"Furthermore, I think Carthage must be destroyed."''
-->- Cato the Elder. [[OneTractMind Closing line of all his speeches]].

->''"The great Carthage waged three wars. It was still powerful after the first, still habitable after the second. It was untraceable after the third."''
-->- Creator/BertoltBrecht.

These were a series of wars fought between TheRomanRepublic and Carthage. The basic explanation for them seems to be that there were only two major powers left (though many minor ones), none to provide a third to assure BalanceOfPower and the Mediterranean sea just wasn't big enough for both.

The first one started when a group of [[HiredGuns mercenaries]] around what is now Messina in Sicily called the Mamertines declared themselves an independent kingdom and asked for protection from Syracuse. Their critical strategic position caused both Rome and Carthage to rush to offer their protection and to collide with one another touching off a general war. The Romans succeeded on land making themselves the dominant power in Sicily. At sea there was a remarkable upset in which the lubberly Romans took on the Carthaginians who were recognized as a [[BadassArmy Badass Navy]] and swept them from the sea (mostly by getting their own BadassArmy from their ships to those of their enemies via a drawbridge-like device known as the ''corvus'').

The Second War started in Spain in a similar manner, as a quarrel over the fate of a small state, this time the city-state of Saguntum. However it appears to have been a deliberately engineered provocation by the famous Hannibal Barca, a Carthaginian noble who was ruling Spain in the name of the Carthaginian empire but almost as a private kingdom. Upon the declaration of war, Hannibal made a surprise march over the Alps and invaded Italy, winning several battles including Cannae, a battle which is still a catchword among connoisseurs of tactical virtuosity. The Romans recovered by their desperate gathering from any possible source of [[WeHaveReserves Reserves]] including slaves. Deciding that they couldn't match Hannibal they pinned him in Italy using the strategy devised by Fabius Maximus Cunctator (Fabius the Great Delayer). In the meantime Roman legions began tearing up the rest of Carthage's empire to leave Hannibal isolated. During this time the general Publius Cornelius Scipio Africanus better remembered as just Scipio Africanus (literally Scipio [conqueror] of Africa), from the Scipio [[TheClan family]] gained prominence with his victories in Spain. On his suggestion the Romans landed close to Carthage forcing Hannibal to return to defend it. Scipio and Hannibal met on the field of Zama, and Scipio won leaving Rome as the greatest power in the Mediterranean and well on its way to becoming TheEmpire.

While the First War seems to have been a mutual collision, and the Romans could arguably claim to be fighting in self-defense in the Second, the Third War was a genuine KickTheDog on Rome's part. The best that can be said in extenuation is that every family in Rome was mourning someone and they would be more than human not to want Carthage destroyed. Yet by that time, [[VestigialEmpire the Empire of Carthage had been reduced to the City of Carthage]]. The Third Punic War was thus simply the siege of Carthage, [[CurbStompBattle which didn't stand a chance from the start]]. The Romans overcame desperate resistance, sacked Carthage and according to legend "[[SaltTheEarth sowed the fields with salt]]" to keep anything from growing. This was the end of the wars.

Rome seems to have triumphed through its superior organization. It is also credited with a more motivated populace, as the army of Carthage was composed chiefly of vassals and mercenaries whereas the Roman army was made up of citizens and near citizens. Rome could also, for that reason, field a greater supply of manpower. Finally Carthage itself may have been lax in its support until too late, and the Second War at times looks like a private war of Hannibal's. The war created a number of famous commanders, mostly on the Roman side, but the best remembered was the Carthaginian Hannibal.

The term Punic Wars, by the way, comes from the term ''Punici'' or ''Poenici'', which is a transliteration of the Roman word for Phoenecian (members of that civilization founded Carthage in the 9th century BC). Carthaginians may have called it "the Roman wars" for all we know, but their perspective is unfortunately lacking for [[WrittenByTheWinners obvious reasons]]. Most sources for the history of the Punic Wars are either Roman or Greek.

Also technically the longest war in history, due to the mayors of Rome and Carthage signing a peace treaty in 1985 "officially" ending the war.

!!Tropes for this page:

* AbsentMindedProfessor : Archimedes. According to tales, when the Romans were doing their RapePillageAndBurn in Syracuse, a legionary came upon him while he was doing math problems in the dust. Archimedes barely bothered to notice him so the soldier killed him. Marcus Claudius Marcellus, the Roman General, was greatly annoyed as he had wanted Archimedes alive, either because the Roman general was a CulturedWarrior or Archimedes might be useful (Given that Marcus had been awarded the Spolia Optima, and was regarded before Scipio Africanus as Rome's foremost General, it's very likely to have been the former.)
* TheAlliance: Rome's strength was that it led a large one that provided [[WeHaveReserves huge allied contingents]] and defended it. Hannibal's strategic requirement before being able to directly attack Rome was to break it, and it was precisely his failure to get the Etruscan, Latins and Umbrian (the largest allies and the one directly surrounding Rome) to switch side that ultimately caused his defeat.
** {{Invoked}} by Amilcar, Hannibal's father: realizing Rome's strength and being GenreSavvy, he went in Spain to create one for Carthage, also including the Numidians for their cavalry. Differently from Rome's, Carthage's alliance fell apart: the Spanish tribes were either conquered or convinced to switch sides by Scipio, and the Numidians changed sides after Scipio inflicted them a CurbStompBattle rivaling Cannae (using the survivors of Cannae to boot) and replaced their king with a Roman-friendly one in the wake of this victory.
** Rome and Carthage were this from the Phyrric Wars until the First Punic War.
* {{Ambadassador}} : Scipio was about as good at diplomacy as in war and the two reinforced each other.
* ArchEnemy: Rome and Carthage.
* BadassArmy : Most obviously the Roman legionaries, but Hannibal's army in Italy qualifies, what with Hannibal managing to out-strategize Rome for 16 years after losing almost half his army in the Alps.
* BadassCreed: The Mamertines, whose name means ''Children of Mars'' (the war god). In other words they were the "Children of battle".
* BadassFamily : The Barcids (Hannibals family). Several families in Rome including the Scipios, of whom Scipio Africanus was best remembered.
* BadassGrandpa: The King of Numidia at Zama
* BeastOfBattle : Hannibal's elephants, which are among the only things most people remember about the Punic Wars. [[AwesomeButImpractical Too bad they had a tendency to panic in battle.]]
* BoardingParty: The Romans stopped losing sea battles once they stopped trying to use [[RammingAlwaysWorks traditional tactics]] ([[InvertedTrope which didn't work]], since the Carthaginians were better at it) and started using these, relying on their infamously brutal legionaries to serve as ''ad hoc'' marines.
* {{Cincinnatus}}: Fabius and Scipio. Scipio could conceivably have made himself a GloriousLeader. Fabius was a "dictator"(in the Roman sense it was a legitimate office appointed by the Senate in emergency in a decree of what moderns would call martial law) for awhile and left dutifully when his time was up.
* ClimbingTheCliffsOfInsanity: Crossing the Alps with [[BeastOfBattle elephants]].
* CoolHorse: The Kingdom of Numidia was known for its cavalry and both sides desired their alliance eagerly.
* CoolShip: Quinqueremes, hexaremes and more.
* CoolVersusAwesome: Scipio versus Hannibal at Zama. It is not often we see two world class generals face to face.
* {{Conscription}}: The reason Rome had a lot of [[WeHaveReserves reserves]]
* CurbStompBattle: The infamous Battle of Cannae may be the single biggest curb stomp battle in recorded history. Using a vastly outnumbered army consisting of warriors from different lands, Hannibal managed to lure the tightly packed, phalanx-like formation of the Roman army into his deliberately weakened center. The Carthaginian army bowed backward as the Romans pushed in. Once the Roman army had completely waded into Hannibal's odd formation, he sent his cavalry around the back to attack the rear, completely encircling the Romans. 50,000 Roman troops died; Carthage lost 8,000.
* DefeatMeansFriendship: After the First War; Syracuse and Rome. During the second war the Romans weren't so merciful.
* {{Determinator}}: Rome, as best shown by when its forces were defeated at Cannae: when asked if they wanted to have another go at defeating Hannibal, the survivors followed Scipio Africanus in Africa and actually defeated Hannibal.
* TheDogBitesBack: Both sides fell victim to this. At Zama, the Roman soldiers that broke Hannibal's lines and defeated him were [[ShockingDefeatLegacy the survivors of the terrible Roman defeat at Cannae]]. In the siege of Carthage, the whole Carthaginian population, barely armed, [[LastStand fought to the last the overwhelming Roman army]], resisting for three years and inflicting disproportionate losses before the Romans could prevail.
* EnemyMine: They didn't like it, but when the Mamertines requested for an alliance with the Roman Republic, the Syracusans allied with their former enemy the Carthaginian Empire.
* EvenBetterSequel: The Second Punic War. It's the one people pay the most attention to, and with good reason:
** Hannibal crossing the Alps.
** The Battle of Cannae.
** Fabian's tactics.
** Scipio Africanus invading Spain.
** Marcus Claudius Marcellus obtaining the ''spoila opima'' -- claiming the armor of an opposing commander after killing him in single combat.
** The Battle of Zama.
* FinalBattle: Zama
* {{Folkhero}}: Several. Hannibal was a heroic figure for the Carthaginians, the Macedonians and other enemies of the Romans. Scipio and Fabius Maximus for the Romans. Hieron II for the Sicilians and other Italian peoples.
* ForeverWar
* FourStarBadass: Several, but Hannibal was the most famous.
* GalleySlave: Averted. Galleys on both sides were usually rowed by freemen.
* UsefulNotes/TheGloryThatWasRome
* GuileHero: Scipio is usually portrayed as either this or a MagnificentBastard. Hiero II of Syracuse was definitely one cunning bastard. The whole First Punic War was a BatmanGambit he pulled on the Mamertines, and he [[PlayingBothSides played both Carthage and Rome against them]]. First by allying with the Carthaginians, then convincing the Romans after they won that he didn't had any real grudge against them, that he just wanted the Mamertines and that he would be a much better ally than them. Syracuse became a small superpower thanks to his diplomacy.
* HonorBeforeReason: The Roman general Regulus was captured by Carthage, but while a prisoner, he was sent back on the promise that he would advocate a peace favorable to Carthage. When he arrived in Rome, he urged the Senate to refuse any peace offers and continue fighting. Afterwards he voluntarily returned to captivity with the now irate Carthaginians, but according to legend, Regulus submitted to death by ColdBloodedTorture rather than break his parole.
* InherentlyFunnyWords: Heehee, "Punic".
* ImprovisedWeapon: During the final siege, Carthaginians made bowstrings out of their women's hair.
* LandOfOneCity : Most states were this. In the case of Rome and Carthage, they were each one city-state with a wide dominance of territory.
* TheMagnificent : Fabius Maximus Cunctator, Scipio Africanus.
* MagnificentBastard: Romans seem to have considered Hannibal this, which is why we still remember him today. They hated him too much to regard him as a WorthyOpponent, but they regarded him as scary and formidable.
* ManlyTears: It has been told that Scipio Aemilianus, the commander of the Roman army in the Siege of Carthage, cried his eyes out when he withnessed the destruction, the slaughter and the looting his troops commited after they breached through the Carthaginians' defences.
* MoralMyopia : Romans called treachery "Punic Faith". You see, [[FridgeLogic only Romans are allowed to be treacherous]].
* MyDefenseNeedNotProtectMeForever : The Roman strategy in the second punic war. Inspired by Fabius.
* OfficerAndAGentleman: Scipio. He became an exemplar of Roman virtue for generations afterward. One story tells of him, having captured Cartagena, being brought a beautiful Spanish noblewoman as a prize by his men, who knew he had a weakness for beautiful woman. Instead of keeping her as a SexSlave, he located her fiance and reunited the couple. The man turned out to be an important Iberian chieftain who promptly joined the Roman cause.
* OverlyLongGag : Famously, Cato the Elder often invoked his personal motto "Carthage must be destroyed," even in completely unrelated contexts. He continued to do this for many years until he died (shortly before the Third Punic War broke out).
** The Third War qualifies in another way... a peace treaty was officially signed in [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_wars_extended_by_diplomatic_irregularity 1985]]
* PaperTiger: Amazingly enough, Hannibal's BadassArmy was this, being very small and reinforced by allies of dubious loyalty, and completely useless in a siege or in any battle he couldn't outmanouver the Romans. Hannibal's entire strategy was centered on hiding this weakness until enough of Rome's allies switched sides or the Roman morale broke down and they sued for peace. It nearly came to fruition after [[CurbStompBattle Cannae]], but Fabius Maximus managed to stop the morale fall, and when Hannibal decided to offer them a chance to surrender at decent terms the Romans realized this, [[TheDeterminator raised a bigger army]]... [[RefugeInAudacity And demanded the rent for the public land occupied by his camp]].
* PatrioticFervor: Romans had a lot of this. Carthage is said to have not so much.
* PrivateMilitaryContractors: A lot of Hannibal's army.
* ProudMerchantRace: Carthage
* ProudWarriorRace: Spaniards and Numidians. Rome was more organized and was a [[ProudWarriorRace Proud Soldier Race]] rather than a ProudWarriorRace.
* RapePillageAndBurn: The sack of Carthage. Other times obviously.
** The Romans were rightly infamous for sistematically killing all the elders and nobles and enslaving everyone else upon storming a city, and adding all able-bodied men to the murdered people if the city was a former ally. This was crucial in the Sicilian campaign: upon realizing that not even the well-defended Syracuse could resist a Roman siege and that the Romans in Sicily were [[ShockinDefeatLegacy the supposedly cowards that had escaped Cannae]], [[ScrewThisImOuttaHere the other Sicilian cities begged for peace before the Romans could spare supposedly stronger troops]].
* TheRepublic: Both states had a republican form of organization, although it is said that the Roman Government was more representative of its citizens.
* RoyalsWhoActuallyDoSomething: Hieron II of Syracuse.
* TheRomanRepublic
* ShockingDefeatLegacy : The legions that survived Cannae were sort of an [[TheWoobie ugly duckling]] in the Roman Army, despite the fact that they had survived by a LetsGetDangerous moment of hacking their way right through the Punic lines to freedom. At Zama they [[HonorBeforeReason redeemed their honor]] by being among the chief contributors to breaking Hannibal's line and ending the war.
* SillyReasonForWar: A small local conflict between a greek city and a small horde of unemployed mercenaries escalated into three wars that were the ancient history's versions of World War I, II and III.
* SingleIssueWonk: Cato the Elder. That quote at the top? He used it to finish ''every'' speech, regardless of subject.
* TheSpartanWay: The Roman Army. Most definitely.
* StormingTheCastle: Scipio's attack on Cartagena . He actually did it marching across the harbor, after learning from intelligence about tidal quirks in the area that allowed that in places.
* {{Tearjerker}} : This Troper vaguely remembers reading a passage in which a Roman householder glances at a Punic [[MadeASlave slave]] doing chores and then wonders if a missing relation is [[NotSoDifferent doing the same thing]], in Carthage.
* TropeNamer: "Fabian tactics", so called after Fabius Maximus Cunctator.
* {{Troll}}: Rome before the start of the Third Punic War, though they were more than likely trying to provoke Carthage. After Carthage raised an army without its permission in order to try and drive off marauding Numidians, Rome declared that it would need to "appease the Roman people", by giving 300 children from high-up families to be raised in Rome. Then hand over all of their armor and weapons. [[KickTheDog Then move ten miles inland and burn the city.]]
* WeHaveReserves : Rome's army was essentially a citizen militia, supplemented by troops from its [[strike:vassals]] allies. This gave Rome a significant manpower advantage over Carthage, which relied on mercenaries. The decisive factor in the wars was Rome being able to replace its losses, which were at times quite staggering.
** In the First Punic War, the Romans lost almost their entire fleet in a storm off Sicily in 255 BC (280 ships, about 100,000 men). They built and manned a new one, which perished in another storm en route to Africa in 253. Then they lost a third fleet in another storm off Sicily in 249. Finally rich merchants, citizens and shipowners built a fourth fleet, which pulled off the decisive victory of the Aegates Islands in 241.
* WorthyOpponent: Seven years after Zama, Hannibal was in exile at Ephesus, where he was honorably received by Antiochus III of Syria, who was preparing for war with Rome. At one stage, Scipio Africanus came to Ephesus with some others to hold talks with Antiochus, but he was elsewhere, so Scipio and his colleagues had to wait. An amusing, but likely apocryphal anecdote recounted in several histories has Hannibal and Scipio meeting here, and [[GoKartingWithBowser amicably discussing the greatest military commanders of all time]]. Hannibal and Scipio were, of course, both able to agree on the greatest - [[AlexanderTheGreat Alexander]] the [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin Great]]. Scipio then asked Hannibal who he considered the second greatest. It seems Scipio expected himself to be named second greatest, as he was quite nettled when Hannibal gave his answer: Pyrrhus of Epirus - [[TropeNamer he of the]] PyrrhicVictory. So he asked who the third greatest was, expecting that that title, at least, could be awarded to noble Scipio. But it was not to be; Hannibal named ''himself'' the third greatest, and gave several reasons why. Scipio, seeing that Hannibal was likely to [[BadassBoast go on for a while]], laughed, asking Hannibal where he would rank himself if he had not been defeated ''by Scipio''. Hannibal replied [[WorthyOpponent "In that case I should have put myself before Alexander."]]
* WhyDontYouJustShootHim : Carthage Must Be Destroyed!
* YoungFutureFamousPeople: Tiberius Gracchus, the elder of the Gracchi, first earned fame in the third war, being [[{{Badass}} the first to scale the walls of Carthage]].

In Fiction:

* Gustave Flaubert's book ''Salammbô'' is set during the Mercenary War, between the First and Second Punic wars.
* There was and Italian/American film called ''Annibale''. Released in 1959, it starred Victor Mature and Gabriele Ferzetti.
* VinDiesel's [[http://www.darkhorizons.com/news/25824/vin-diesel-s-hannibal-moving-forward project about Hannibal Barca]].
* ''Cabiria'' a 1914 silent film which featured the fictional character of Maciste for the first time.
* Invoked in ''{{Gladiator}}'': One of the GladiatorGames is a recreation of the Battle of Zama. Maximus plays the Punic side, and unexpectedly he wins.
* Invoked in ''Film/{{Patton}}''. Patton is shown touring an ancient battlefield in North Africa which is implied to be Zama.
* Not fiction, but Machiavelli's ''DiscoursesOnLivy'' and ''ThePrince'' deals heavily with the Punic war and draws many examples from it, not least of all because Livy had.
* ''Hannibal: Rome's Worst Nightmare'' is a made-for-TV movie produced by the BBC that retells the story of Hannibal with [[ShownTheirWork refreshing accuracy]]. Not exactly fiction, but worth mentioning.
* Ross Leckie's Carthage Trilogy retells the story of the Second and Third Punic wars from Hannibal's perspective.
* In PoulAnderson's Literature/TimePatrol story "Delenda Est", tampering with the Punic Wars produced an AlternateHistory and the Time Patrol must straighten out the battle that the Scipios should have survived to put it back.
* Recreated in the videogames ''CenturionDefenderOfRome'' and ''Videogame/{{Caesar}}'', in which Carthago is the main enemy of Rome and the player.
* One of the wars most commonly simulated by the Grand Strategy / AlternateHistory game ''Videogame/EuropaUniversalis : Rome''
* In TabletopGame/VampireTheMasquerade the Punic Wars served as a backdrop to and was to some extent engineered by two warring clans of vampires, the [[ProudScholarRace Brujah]] in Carthage and the [[AristocratsAreEvil Ventrue]] in Rome.

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to:

[[quoteright:350:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/general-hannibal-2_165.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:350:Hannibal crossing the Alps]]

->''"Ceterum censeo Carthaginem esse delendam."''
->''"Furthermore, I think Carthage must be destroyed."''
-->- Cato the Elder. [[OneTractMind Closing line of all his speeches]].

->''"The great Carthage waged three wars. It was still powerful after the first, still habitable after the second. It was untraceable after the third."''
-->- Creator/BertoltBrecht.

These were a series of wars fought between TheRomanRepublic and Carthage. The basic explanation for them seems to be that there were only two major powers left (though many minor ones), none to provide a third to assure BalanceOfPower and the Mediterranean sea just wasn't big enough for both.

The first one started when a group of [[HiredGuns mercenaries]] around what is now Messina in Sicily called the Mamertines declared themselves an independent kingdom and asked for protection from Syracuse. Their critical strategic position caused both Rome and Carthage to rush to offer their protection and to collide with one another touching off a general war. The Romans succeeded on land making themselves the dominant power in Sicily. At sea there was a remarkable upset in which the lubberly Romans took on the Carthaginians who were recognized as a [[BadassArmy Badass Navy]] and swept them from the sea (mostly by getting their own BadassArmy from their ships to those of their enemies via a drawbridge-like device known as the ''corvus'').

The Second War started in Spain in a similar manner, as a quarrel over the fate of a small state, this time the city-state of Saguntum. However it appears to have been a deliberately engineered provocation by the famous Hannibal Barca, a Carthaginian noble who was ruling Spain in the name of the Carthaginian empire but almost as a private kingdom. Upon the declaration of war, Hannibal made a surprise march over the Alps and invaded Italy, winning several battles including Cannae, a battle which is still a catchword among connoisseurs of tactical virtuosity. The Romans recovered by their desperate gathering from any possible source of [[WeHaveReserves Reserves]] including slaves. Deciding that they couldn't match Hannibal they pinned him in Italy using the strategy devised by Fabius Maximus Cunctator (Fabius the Great Delayer). In the meantime Roman legions began tearing up the rest of Carthage's empire to leave Hannibal isolated. During this time the general Publius Cornelius Scipio Africanus better remembered as just Scipio Africanus (literally Scipio [conqueror] of Africa), from the Scipio [[TheClan family]] gained prominence with his victories in Spain. On his suggestion the Romans landed close to Carthage forcing Hannibal to return to defend it. Scipio and Hannibal met on the field of Zama, and Scipio won leaving Rome as the greatest power in the Mediterranean and well on its way to becoming TheEmpire.

While the First War seems to have been a mutual collision, and the Romans could arguably claim to be fighting in self-defense in the Second, the Third War was a genuine KickTheDog on Rome's part. The best that can be said in extenuation is that every family in Rome was mourning someone and they would be more than human not to want Carthage destroyed. Yet by that time, [[VestigialEmpire the Empire of Carthage had been reduced to the City of Carthage]]. The Third Punic War was thus simply the siege of Carthage, [[CurbStompBattle which didn't stand a chance from the start]]. The Romans overcame desperate resistance, sacked Carthage and according to legend "[[SaltTheEarth sowed the fields with salt]]" to keep anything from growing. This was the end of the wars.

Rome seems to have triumphed through its superior organization. It is also credited with a more motivated populace, as the army of Carthage was composed chiefly of vassals and mercenaries whereas the Roman army was made up of citizens and near citizens. Rome could also, for that reason, field a greater supply of manpower. Finally Carthage itself may have been lax in its support until too late, and the Second War at times looks like a private war of Hannibal's. The war created a number of famous commanders, mostly on the Roman side, but the best remembered was the Carthaginian Hannibal.

The term Punic Wars, by the way, comes from the term ''Punici'' or ''Poenici'', which is a transliteration of the Roman word for Phoenecian (members of that civilization founded Carthage in the 9th century BC). Carthaginians may have called it "the Roman wars" for all we know, but their perspective is unfortunately lacking for [[WrittenByTheWinners obvious reasons]]. Most sources for the history of the Punic Wars are either Roman or Greek.

Also technically the longest war in history, due to the mayors of Rome and Carthage signing a peace treaty in 1985 "officially" ending the war.

!!Tropes for this page:

* AbsentMindedProfessor : Archimedes. According to tales, when the Romans were doing their RapePillageAndBurn in Syracuse, a legionary came upon him while he was doing math problems in the dust. Archimedes barely bothered to notice him so the soldier killed him. Marcus Claudius Marcellus, the Roman General, was greatly annoyed as he had wanted Archimedes alive, either because the Roman general was a CulturedWarrior or Archimedes might be useful (Given that Marcus had been awarded the Spolia Optima, and was regarded before Scipio Africanus as Rome's foremost General, it's very likely to have been the former.)
* TheAlliance: Rome's strength was that it led a large one that provided [[WeHaveReserves huge allied contingents]] and defended it. Hannibal's strategic requirement before being able to directly attack Rome was to break it, and it was precisely his failure to get the Etruscan, Latins and Umbrian (the largest allies and the one directly surrounding Rome) to switch side that ultimately caused his defeat.
** {{Invoked}} by Amilcar, Hannibal's father: realizing Rome's strength and being GenreSavvy, he went in Spain to create one for Carthage, also including the Numidians for their cavalry. Differently from Rome's, Carthage's alliance fell apart: the Spanish tribes were either conquered or convinced to switch sides by Scipio, and the Numidians changed sides after Scipio inflicted them a CurbStompBattle rivaling Cannae (using the survivors of Cannae to boot) and replaced their king with a Roman-friendly one in the wake of this victory.
** Rome and Carthage were this from the Phyrric Wars until the First Punic War.
* {{Ambadassador}} : Scipio was about as good at diplomacy as in war and the two reinforced each other.
* ArchEnemy: Rome and Carthage.
* BadassArmy : Most obviously the Roman legionaries, but Hannibal's army in Italy qualifies, what with Hannibal managing to out-strategize Rome for 16 years after losing almost half his army in the Alps.
* BadassCreed: The Mamertines, whose name means ''Children of Mars'' (the war god). In other words they were the "Children of battle".
* BadassFamily : The Barcids (Hannibals family). Several families in Rome including the Scipios, of whom Scipio Africanus was best remembered.
* BadassGrandpa: The King of Numidia at Zama
* BeastOfBattle : Hannibal's elephants, which are among the only things most people remember about the Punic Wars. [[AwesomeButImpractical Too bad they had a tendency to panic in battle.]]
* BoardingParty: The Romans stopped losing sea battles once they stopped trying to use [[RammingAlwaysWorks traditional tactics]] ([[InvertedTrope which didn't work]], since the Carthaginians were better at it) and started using these, relying on their infamously brutal legionaries to serve as ''ad hoc'' marines.
* {{Cincinnatus}}: Fabius and Scipio. Scipio could conceivably have made himself a GloriousLeader. Fabius was a "dictator"(in the Roman sense it was a legitimate office appointed by the Senate in emergency in a decree of what moderns would call martial law) for awhile and left dutifully when his time was up.
* ClimbingTheCliffsOfInsanity: Crossing the Alps with [[BeastOfBattle elephants]].
* CoolHorse: The Kingdom of Numidia was known for its cavalry and both sides desired their alliance eagerly.
* CoolShip: Quinqueremes, hexaremes and more.
* CoolVersusAwesome: Scipio versus Hannibal at Zama. It is not often we see two world class generals face to face.
* {{Conscription}}: The reason Rome had a lot of [[WeHaveReserves reserves]]
* CurbStompBattle: The infamous Battle of Cannae may be the single biggest curb stomp battle in recorded history. Using a vastly outnumbered army consisting of warriors from different lands, Hannibal managed to lure the tightly packed, phalanx-like formation of the Roman army into his deliberately weakened center. The Carthaginian army bowed backward as the Romans pushed in. Once the Roman army had completely waded into Hannibal's odd formation, he sent his cavalry around the back to attack the rear, completely encircling the Romans. 50,000 Roman troops died; Carthage lost 8,000.
* DefeatMeansFriendship: After the First War; Syracuse and Rome. During the second war the Romans weren't so merciful.
* {{Determinator}}: Rome, as best shown by when its forces were defeated at Cannae: when asked if they wanted to have another go at defeating Hannibal, the survivors followed Scipio Africanus in Africa and actually defeated Hannibal.
* TheDogBitesBack: Both sides fell victim to this. At Zama, the Roman soldiers that broke Hannibal's lines and defeated him were [[ShockingDefeatLegacy the survivors of the terrible Roman defeat at Cannae]]. In the siege of Carthage, the whole Carthaginian population, barely armed, [[LastStand fought to the last the overwhelming Roman army]], resisting for three years and inflicting disproportionate losses before the Romans could prevail.
* EnemyMine: They didn't like it, but when the Mamertines requested for an alliance with the Roman Republic, the Syracusans allied with their former enemy the Carthaginian Empire.
* EvenBetterSequel: The Second Punic War. It's the one people pay the most attention to, and with good reason:
** Hannibal crossing the Alps.
** The Battle of Cannae.
** Fabian's tactics.
** Scipio Africanus invading Spain.
** Marcus Claudius Marcellus obtaining the ''spoila opima'' -- claiming the armor of an opposing commander after killing him in single combat.
** The Battle of Zama.
* FinalBattle: Zama
* {{Folkhero}}: Several. Hannibal was a heroic figure for the Carthaginians, the Macedonians and other enemies of the Romans. Scipio and Fabius Maximus for the Romans. Hieron II for the Sicilians and other Italian peoples.
* ForeverWar
* FourStarBadass: Several, but Hannibal was the most famous.
* GalleySlave: Averted. Galleys on both sides were usually rowed by freemen.
* UsefulNotes/TheGloryThatWasRome
* GuileHero: Scipio is usually portrayed as either this or a MagnificentBastard. Hiero II of Syracuse was definitely one cunning bastard. The whole First Punic War was a BatmanGambit he pulled on the Mamertines, and he [[PlayingBothSides played both Carthage and Rome against them]]. First by allying with the Carthaginians, then convincing the Romans after they won that he didn't had any real grudge against them, that he just wanted the Mamertines and that he would be a much better ally than them. Syracuse became a small superpower thanks to his diplomacy.
* HonorBeforeReason: The Roman general Regulus was captured by Carthage, but while a prisoner, he was sent back on the promise that he would advocate a peace favorable to Carthage. When he arrived in Rome, he urged the Senate to refuse any peace offers and continue fighting. Afterwards he voluntarily returned to captivity with the now irate Carthaginians, but according to legend, Regulus submitted to death by ColdBloodedTorture rather than break his parole.
* InherentlyFunnyWords: Heehee, "Punic".
* ImprovisedWeapon: During the final siege, Carthaginians made bowstrings out of their women's hair.
* LandOfOneCity : Most states were this. In the case of Rome and Carthage, they were each one city-state with a wide dominance of territory.
* TheMagnificent : Fabius Maximus Cunctator, Scipio Africanus.
* MagnificentBastard: Romans seem to have considered Hannibal this, which is why we still remember him today. They hated him too much to regard him as a WorthyOpponent, but they regarded him as scary and formidable.
* ManlyTears: It has been told that Scipio Aemilianus, the commander of the Roman army in the Siege of Carthage, cried his eyes out when he withnessed the destruction, the slaughter and the looting his troops commited after they breached through the Carthaginians' defences.
* MoralMyopia : Romans called treachery "Punic Faith". You see, [[FridgeLogic only Romans are allowed to be treacherous]].
* MyDefenseNeedNotProtectMeForever : The Roman strategy in the second punic war. Inspired by Fabius.
* OfficerAndAGentleman: Scipio. He became an exemplar of Roman virtue for generations afterward. One story tells of him, having captured Cartagena, being brought a beautiful Spanish noblewoman as a prize by his men, who knew he had a weakness for beautiful woman. Instead of keeping her as a SexSlave, he located her fiance and reunited the couple. The man turned out to be an important Iberian chieftain who promptly joined the Roman cause.
* OverlyLongGag : Famously, Cato the Elder often invoked his personal motto "Carthage must be destroyed," even in completely unrelated contexts. He continued to do this for many years until he died (shortly before the Third Punic War broke out).
** The Third War qualifies in another way... a peace treaty was officially signed in [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_wars_extended_by_diplomatic_irregularity 1985]]
* PaperTiger: Amazingly enough, Hannibal's BadassArmy was this, being very small and reinforced by allies of dubious loyalty, and completely useless in a siege or in any battle he couldn't outmanouver the Romans. Hannibal's entire strategy was centered on hiding this weakness until enough of Rome's allies switched sides or the Roman morale broke down and they sued for peace. It nearly came to fruition after [[CurbStompBattle Cannae]], but Fabius Maximus managed to stop the morale fall, and when Hannibal decided to offer them a chance to surrender at decent terms the Romans realized this, [[TheDeterminator raised a bigger army]]... [[RefugeInAudacity And demanded the rent for the public land occupied by his camp]].
* PatrioticFervor: Romans had a lot of this. Carthage is said to have not so much.
* PrivateMilitaryContractors: A lot of Hannibal's army.
* ProudMerchantRace: Carthage
* ProudWarriorRace: Spaniards and Numidians. Rome was more organized and was a [[ProudWarriorRace Proud Soldier Race]] rather than a ProudWarriorRace.
* RapePillageAndBurn: The sack of Carthage. Other times obviously.
** The Romans were rightly infamous for sistematically killing all the elders and nobles and enslaving everyone else upon storming a city, and adding all able-bodied men to the murdered people if the city was a former ally. This was crucial in the Sicilian campaign: upon realizing that not even the well-defended Syracuse could resist a Roman siege and that the Romans in Sicily were [[ShockinDefeatLegacy the supposedly cowards that had escaped Cannae]], [[ScrewThisImOuttaHere the other Sicilian cities begged for peace before the Romans could spare supposedly stronger troops]].
* TheRepublic: Both states had a republican form of organization, although it is said that the Roman Government was more representative of its citizens.
* RoyalsWhoActuallyDoSomething: Hieron II of Syracuse.
* TheRomanRepublic
* ShockingDefeatLegacy : The legions that survived Cannae were sort of an [[TheWoobie ugly duckling]] in the Roman Army, despite the fact that they had survived by a LetsGetDangerous moment of hacking their way right through the Punic lines to freedom. At Zama they [[HonorBeforeReason redeemed their honor]] by being among the chief contributors to breaking Hannibal's line and ending the war.
* SillyReasonForWar: A small local conflict between a greek city and a small horde of unemployed mercenaries escalated into three wars that were the ancient history's versions of World War I, II and III.
* SingleIssueWonk: Cato the Elder. That quote at the top? He used it to finish ''every'' speech, regardless of subject.
* TheSpartanWay: The Roman Army. Most definitely.
* StormingTheCastle: Scipio's attack on Cartagena . He actually did it marching across the harbor, after learning from intelligence about tidal quirks in the area that allowed that in places.
* {{Tearjerker}} : This Troper vaguely remembers reading a passage in which a Roman householder glances at a Punic [[MadeASlave slave]] doing chores and then wonders if a missing relation is [[NotSoDifferent doing the same thing]], in Carthage.
* TropeNamer: "Fabian tactics", so called after Fabius Maximus Cunctator.
* {{Troll}}: Rome before the start of the Third Punic War, though they were more than likely trying to provoke Carthage. After Carthage raised an army without its permission in order to try and drive off marauding Numidians, Rome declared that it would need to "appease the Roman people", by giving 300 children from high-up families to be raised in Rome. Then hand over all of their armor and weapons. [[KickTheDog Then move ten miles inland and burn the city.]]
* WeHaveReserves : Rome's army was essentially a citizen militia, supplemented by troops from its [[strike:vassals]] allies. This gave Rome a significant manpower advantage over Carthage, which relied on mercenaries. The decisive factor in the wars was Rome being able to replace its losses, which were at times quite staggering.
** In the First Punic War, the Romans lost almost their entire fleet in a storm off Sicily in 255 BC (280 ships, about 100,000 men). They built and manned a new one, which perished in another storm en route to Africa in 253. Then they lost a third fleet in another storm off Sicily in 249. Finally rich merchants, citizens and shipowners built a fourth fleet, which pulled off the decisive victory of the Aegates Islands in 241.
* WorthyOpponent: Seven years after Zama, Hannibal was in exile at Ephesus, where he was honorably received by Antiochus III of Syria, who was preparing for war with Rome. At one stage, Scipio Africanus came to Ephesus with some others to hold talks with Antiochus, but he was elsewhere, so Scipio and his colleagues had to wait. An amusing, but likely apocryphal anecdote recounted in several histories has Hannibal and Scipio meeting here, and [[GoKartingWithBowser amicably discussing the greatest military commanders of all time]]. Hannibal and Scipio were, of course, both able to agree on the greatest - [[AlexanderTheGreat Alexander]] the [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin Great]]. Scipio then asked Hannibal who he considered the second greatest. It seems Scipio expected himself to be named second greatest, as he was quite nettled when Hannibal gave his answer: Pyrrhus of Epirus - [[TropeNamer he of the]] PyrrhicVictory. So he asked who the third greatest was, expecting that that title, at least, could be awarded to noble Scipio. But it was not to be; Hannibal named ''himself'' the third greatest, and gave several reasons why. Scipio, seeing that Hannibal was likely to [[BadassBoast go on for a while]], laughed, asking Hannibal where he would rank himself if he had not been defeated ''by Scipio''. Hannibal replied [[WorthyOpponent "In that case I should have put myself before Alexander."]]
* WhyDontYouJustShootHim : Carthage Must Be Destroyed!
* YoungFutureFamousPeople: Tiberius Gracchus, the elder of the Gracchi, first earned fame in the third war, being [[{{Badass}} the first to scale the walls of Carthage]].

In Fiction:

* Gustave Flaubert's book ''Salammbô'' is set during the Mercenary War, between the First and Second Punic wars.
* There was and Italian/American film called ''Annibale''. Released in 1959, it starred Victor Mature and Gabriele Ferzetti.
* VinDiesel's [[http://www.darkhorizons.com/news/25824/vin-diesel-s-hannibal-moving-forward project about Hannibal Barca]].
* ''Cabiria'' a 1914 silent film which featured the fictional character of Maciste for the first time.
* Invoked in ''{{Gladiator}}'': One of the GladiatorGames is a recreation of the Battle of Zama. Maximus plays the Punic side, and unexpectedly he wins.
* Invoked in ''Film/{{Patton}}''. Patton is shown touring an ancient battlefield in North Africa which is implied to be Zama.
* Not fiction, but Machiavelli's ''DiscoursesOnLivy'' and ''ThePrince'' deals heavily with the Punic war and draws many examples from it, not least of all because Livy had.
* ''Hannibal: Rome's Worst Nightmare'' is a made-for-TV movie produced by the BBC that retells the story of Hannibal with [[ShownTheirWork refreshing accuracy]]. Not exactly fiction, but worth mentioning.
* Ross Leckie's Carthage Trilogy retells the story of the Second and Third Punic wars from Hannibal's perspective.
* In PoulAnderson's Literature/TimePatrol story "Delenda Est", tampering with the Punic Wars produced an AlternateHistory and the Time Patrol must straighten out the battle that the Scipios should have survived to put it back.
* Recreated in the videogames ''CenturionDefenderOfRome'' and ''Videogame/{{Caesar}}'', in which Carthago is the main enemy of Rome and the player.
* One of the wars most commonly simulated by the Grand Strategy / AlternateHistory game ''Videogame/EuropaUniversalis : Rome''
* In TabletopGame/VampireTheMasquerade the Punic Wars served as a backdrop to and was to some extent engineered by two warring clans of vampires, the [[ProudScholarRace Brujah]] in Carthage and the [[AristocratsAreEvil Ventrue]] in Rome.

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[[redirect:UsefulNotes/PunicWars]]
2nd Sep '13 8:14:20 AM EDP
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* RapePillageAndBurn : The sack of Carthage. Other times obviously.

to:

* RapePillageAndBurn : RapePillageAndBurn: The sack of Carthage. Other times obviously.obviously.
** The Romans were rightly infamous for sistematically killing all the elders and nobles and enslaving everyone else upon storming a city, and adding all able-bodied men to the murdered people if the city was a former ally. This was crucial in the Sicilian campaign: upon realizing that not even the well-defended Syracuse could resist a Roman siege and that the Romans in Sicily were [[ShockinDefeatLegacy the supposedly cowards that had escaped Cannae]], [[ScrewThisImOuttaHere the other Sicilian cities begged for peace before the Romans could spare supposedly stronger troops]].
2nd Sep '13 8:01:56 AM EDP
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* AbsentMindedProfessor : Archimedes. According to tales, when the Romans were doing their RapePillageAndBurn in Syracuse, a legionary came upon him while he was doing math problems in the dust. Archimedes barely bothered to notice him so the soldier killed him. Marcus Claudius Marcellus, the Roman General, was greatly annoyed as he had wanted Archimedes alive, either because the Roman general was a CulturedWarrior or Archimedes might be useful (Given that Marcus had been awarded the Spolia opima, and was regarded before Scipio Africanus as Rome's foremost General, it's very likely to have been the former.)

to:

* AbsentMindedProfessor : Archimedes. According to tales, when the Romans were doing their RapePillageAndBurn in Syracuse, a legionary came upon him while he was doing math problems in the dust. Archimedes barely bothered to notice him so the soldier killed him. Marcus Claudius Marcellus, the Roman General, was greatly annoyed as he had wanted Archimedes alive, either because the Roman general was a CulturedWarrior or Archimedes might be useful (Given that Marcus had been awarded the Spolia opima, Optima, and was regarded before Scipio Africanus as Rome's foremost General, it's very likely to have been the former.))
* TheAlliance: Rome's strength was that it led a large one that provided [[WeHaveReserves huge allied contingents]] and defended it. Hannibal's strategic requirement before being able to directly attack Rome was to break it, and it was precisely his failure to get the Etruscan, Latins and Umbrian (the largest allies and the one directly surrounding Rome) to switch side that ultimately caused his defeat.
** {{Invoked}} by Amilcar, Hannibal's father: realizing Rome's strength and being GenreSavvy, he went in Spain to create one for Carthage, also including the Numidians for their cavalry. Differently from Rome's, Carthage's alliance fell apart: the Spanish tribes were either conquered or convinced to switch sides by Scipio, and the Numidians changed sides after Scipio inflicted them a CurbStompBattle rivaling Cannae (using the survivors of Cannae to boot) and replaced their king with a Roman-friendly one in the wake of this victory.
** Rome and Carthage were this from the Phyrric Wars until the First Punic War.
2nd Sep '13 7:39:51 AM EDP
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Added DiffLines:

* PaperTiger: Amazingly enough, Hannibal's BadassArmy was this, being very small and reinforced by allies of dubious loyalty, and completely useless in a siege or in any battle he couldn't outmanouver the Romans. Hannibal's entire strategy was centered on hiding this weakness until enough of Rome's allies switched sides or the Roman morale broke down and they sued for peace. It nearly came to fruition after [[CurbStompBattle Cannae]], but Fabius Maximus managed to stop the morale fall, and when Hannibal decided to offer them a chance to surrender at decent terms the Romans realized this, [[TheDeterminator raised a bigger army]]... [[RefugeInAudacity And demanded the rent for the public land occupied by his camp]].
7th Apr '13 11:31:52 PM EarlOfSandvich
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* In VampireTheMasquerade the Punic Wars served as a backdrop to and was to some extent engineered by two warring clans of vampires, the [[ProudScholarRace Brujah]] in Carthage and the [[AristocratsAreEvil Ventrue]] in Rome.

to:

* In VampireTheMasquerade TabletopGame/VampireTheMasquerade the Punic Wars served as a backdrop to and was to some extent engineered by two warring clans of vampires, the [[ProudScholarRace Brujah]] in Carthage and the [[AristocratsAreEvil Ventrue]] in Rome.
5th Apr '13 8:16:10 AM Brick3621
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* AbsentMindedProfessor : Archimedes. According to tales, when the Romans were doing their RapePillageAndBurn in Syracuse, a legionary came upon him while he was doing math problems in the dust. Archimedes barely bothered to notice him so the soldier killed him. Marcus Claudius Marcellus, the Roman General, was greatly annoyed as he had wanted Archimedes alive, either because the Roman general was a CulturedWarrior or Archimedes might be useful (Given that the Roman General was Marcus Claudius Marcellus who had been awarded the Spolia opima, and was regarded before Scipio Africanus as Rome's foremost General, it's very likely to have been the former.)

to:

* AbsentMindedProfessor : Archimedes. According to tales, when the Romans were doing their RapePillageAndBurn in Syracuse, a legionary came upon him while he was doing math problems in the dust. Archimedes barely bothered to notice him so the soldier killed him. Marcus Claudius Marcellus, the Roman General, was greatly annoyed as he had wanted Archimedes alive, either because the Roman general was a CulturedWarrior or Archimedes might be useful (Given that the Roman General was Marcus Claudius Marcellus who had been awarded the Spolia opima, and was regarded before Scipio Africanus as Rome's foremost General, it's very likely to have been the former.)
5th Apr '13 8:14:25 AM Brick3621
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* AbsentMindedProfessor : Archimedes. According to tales when the Romans were doing their RapePillageAndBurn in Syracuse, a legionary came upon him while he was doing math problems in the dust. Archimedes barely bothered to notice him so the soldier killed him. The Roman General was greatly annoyed as he had wanted Archimedes alive, either because the Roman general was a CulturedWarrior or Archimedes might be useful, or both.
** Given that the Roman General was Marcus Claudius Marcellus who had been awarded the Spolia opima, and was regarded before Scipio Africanus as Rome's foremost General, it's very likely to have been the former.

to:

* AbsentMindedProfessor : Archimedes. According to tales tales, when the Romans were doing their RapePillageAndBurn in Syracuse, a legionary came upon him while he was doing math problems in the dust. Archimedes barely bothered to notice him so the soldier killed him. The Marcus Claudius Marcellus, the Roman General General, was greatly annoyed as he had wanted Archimedes alive, either because the Roman general was a CulturedWarrior or Archimedes might be useful, or both.
** Given
useful (Given that the Roman General was Marcus Claudius Marcellus who had been awarded the Spolia opima, and was regarded before Scipio Africanus as Rome's foremost General, it's very likely to have been the former.)



* BadassArmy : Usually Rome but Hannibal's army in Italy qualifies, what with Hannibal managing to out-strategize Rome for 16 years after losing almost half his army in the alps.
* BadassCreed: The Mamertines. The word means ''Children of Mars'' (the war god). In other words it means "Children of battle".

to:

* BadassArmy : Usually Rome Most obviously the Roman legionaries, but Hannibal's army in Italy qualifies, what with Hannibal managing to out-strategize Rome for 16 years after losing almost half his army in the alps.
Alps.
* BadassCreed: The Mamertines. The word Mamertines, whose name means ''Children of Mars'' (the war god). In other words it means they were the "Children of battle".



* BeastOfBattle : Hannibal's elephants. Practically the only thing most people remember about the Punic Wars. Too bad they had a tendency to panic in battle.

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* BeastOfBattle : Hannibal's elephants. Practically elephants, which are among the only thing things most people remember about the Punic Wars. [[AwesomeButImpractical Too bad they had a tendency to panic in battle.]]



* CurbStompBattle: The infamous Battle of Cannae may be the single biggest curb stomp battle in recorded history. Using a vastly outnumbered army consisting of warriors from different lands, Hannibal manage to lure the tightly pack, phalanx-like formation of the Roman army into his deliberately weakened center. The Carthaginian army bowed backward as the Romans pushed in. Once the Roman army had completely waded into Hannibal's odd formation, he sent his cavalry around the back to attack the rear, completely encircling the Romans. 50,000 Roman troops died; Carthage lost 8,000.

to:

* CurbStompBattle: The infamous Battle of Cannae may be the single biggest curb stomp battle in recorded history. Using a vastly outnumbered army consisting of warriors from different lands, Hannibal manage managed to lure the tightly pack, packed, phalanx-like formation of the Roman army into his deliberately weakened center. The Carthaginian army bowed backward as the Romans pushed in. Once the Roman army had completely waded into Hannibal's odd formation, he sent his cavalry around the back to attack the rear, completely encircling the Romans. 50,000 Roman troops died; Carthage lost 8,000.



* {{Determinator}}: Rome
** Best shown by the Roman army defeated at Cannae: when asked if they wanted to have another go at defeating Hannibal, the survivors followed Scipio Africanus in Africa and actually defeated Hannibal.
* TheDogBitesBack: on both sides. At Zama, the Roman soldiers that broke Hannibal lines and defeated him were [[ShockingDefeatLegacy the survivors of the terrible Roman defeat at Cannae]]. In the siege of Carthage, the whole Carthaginian population, barely armed, [[LastStand fought to the last the overwhelming Roman army]], resisting for three years and inflicting disproportionate losses before the Romans could prevail.
* EnemyMine: They didn't liked it, but when the Mamertines requested for an alliance with the Roman Republic, the Syracusans allied with their former enemy the Carthaginian Empire.
* EvenBetterSequel: The Second Punic War, it's the one people pay the most attention to, and with good reason:

to:

* {{Determinator}}: Rome
** Best
Rome, as best shown by the Roman army when its forces were defeated at Cannae: when asked if they wanted to have another go at defeating Hannibal, the survivors followed Scipio Africanus in Africa and actually defeated Hannibal.
* TheDogBitesBack: on both sides. Both sides fell victim to this. At Zama, the Roman soldiers that broke Hannibal Hannibal's lines and defeated him were [[ShockingDefeatLegacy the survivors of the terrible Roman defeat at Cannae]]. In the siege of Carthage, the whole Carthaginian population, barely armed, [[LastStand fought to the last the overwhelming Roman army]], resisting for three years and inflicting disproportionate losses before the Romans could prevail.
* EnemyMine: They didn't liked like it, but when the Mamertines requested for an alliance with the Roman Republic, the Syracusans allied with their former enemy the Carthaginian Empire.
* EvenBetterSequel: The Second Punic War, it's War. It's the one people pay the most attention to, and with good reason: reason:



** Fabian tactics.

to:

** Fabian Fabian's tactics.



* {{Folkhero}}: A lot. Hannibal for the Carthaginians, the Macedonians and other enemies of the Romans. Scipio and Fabius Maximus for the Romans. Hieron II for the Sicilians and other Italian peoples.

to:

* {{Folkhero}}: A lot. Several. Hannibal was a heroic figure for the Carthaginians, the Macedonians and other enemies of the Romans. Scipio and Fabius Maximus for the Romans. Hieron II for the Sicilians and other Italian peoples.



* FourStarBadass: Hannibal most famous. But a number of others.

to:

* FourStarBadass: Several, but Hannibal was the most famous. But a number of others.famous.



* TheGloryThatWasRome
* GuileHero: Scipio is usually portrayed as this.
** He was this or a MagnificentBastard but Hiero II of Syracuse was definitely one cunning bastard. The whole First Punic War was a BatmanGambit he pulled on the Mamertines, and he [[PlayingBothSides played both Carthage and Rome against them]]. First by allying with the Carthaginians, then convincing the Romans after they won that he didn't had any real grudge against them, that he just wanted the Mamertines and that he would be a much better ally than them. Syracuse became a small superpower thanks to his diplomacy.
* HonorBeforeReason: Among the most famous of these was the Roman general Regulus who according to legend submitted to death by ColdBloodedTorture rather than break his parole.
** To elaborate: Regulus was captured by Carthage. While a prisoner, he was sent back on the promise that he would advocate a peace favorable to Carthage. When he arrived in Rome, he urged the Senate to refuse any peace offers and continue fighting. Afterwards he voluntarily returned to captivity with the now irate Carthaginians.

to:

* TheGloryThatWasRome
UsefulNotes/TheGloryThatWasRome
* GuileHero: Scipio is usually portrayed as this.
** He was
either this or a MagnificentBastard but MagnificentBastard. Hiero II of Syracuse was definitely one cunning bastard. The whole First Punic War was a BatmanGambit he pulled on the Mamertines, and he [[PlayingBothSides played both Carthage and Rome against them]]. First by allying with the Carthaginians, then convincing the Romans after they won that he didn't had any real grudge against them, that he just wanted the Mamertines and that he would be a much better ally than them. Syracuse became a small superpower thanks to his diplomacy.
* HonorBeforeReason: Among the most famous of these was the The Roman general Regulus who according to legend submitted to death by ColdBloodedTorture rather than break his parole.
** To elaborate:
Regulus was captured by Carthage. While Carthage, but while a prisoner, he was sent back on the promise that he would advocate a peace favorable to Carthage. When he arrived in Rome, he urged the Senate to refuse any peace offers and continue fighting. Afterwards he voluntarily returned to captivity with the now irate Carthaginians.Carthaginians, but according to legend, Regulus submitted to death by ColdBloodedTorture rather than break his parole.



* LandOfOneCity : Most states including both Rome and Carthage were this. In the case of Rome and Carthage they were each one city-state with a wide dominance of territory.

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* LandOfOneCity : Most states including both Rome and Carthage were this. In the case of Rome and Carthage Carthage, they were each one city-state with a wide dominance of territory.



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24th Mar '13 11:46:21 AM CrimsonZephyr
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Added DiffLines:

* OfficerAndAGentleman: Scipio. He became an exemplar of Roman virtue for generations afterward. One story tells of him, having captured Cartagena, being brought a beautiful Spanish noblewoman as a prize by his men, who knew he had a weakness for beautiful woman. Instead of keeping her as a SexSlave, he located her fiance and reunited the couple. The man turned out to be an important Iberian chieftain who promptly joined the Roman cause.
25th Feb '13 5:40:29 AM DynamicDragon
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Added DiffLines:

22nd Feb '13 5:22:30 PM VideoGone
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Added DiffLines:

* WorthyOpponent: Seven years after Zama, Hannibal was in exile at Ephesus, where he was honorably received by Antiochus III of Syria, who was preparing for war with Rome. At one stage, Scipio Africanus came to Ephesus with some others to hold talks with Antiochus, but he was elsewhere, so Scipio and his colleagues had to wait. An amusing, but likely apocryphal anecdote recounted in several histories has Hannibal and Scipio meeting here, and [[GoKartingWithBowser amicably discussing the greatest military commanders of all time]]. Hannibal and Scipio were, of course, both able to agree on the greatest - [[AlexanderTheGreat Alexander]] the [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin Great]]. Scipio then asked Hannibal who he considered the second greatest. It seems Scipio expected himself to be named second greatest, as he was quite nettled when Hannibal gave his answer: Pyrrhus of Epirus - [[TropeNamer he of the]] PyrrhicVictory. So he asked who the third greatest was, expecting that that title, at least, could be awarded to noble Scipio. But it was not to be; Hannibal named ''himself'' the third greatest, and gave several reasons why. Scipio, seeing that Hannibal was likely to [[BadassBoast go on for a while]], laughed, asking Hannibal where he would rank himself if he had not been defeated ''by Scipio''. Hannibal replied [[WorthyOpponent "In that case I should have put myself before Alexander."]]
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