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Hannibal

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Poll Question: Hannibal
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TheAlaniDragonRising View Drop Down
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  Quote TheAlaniDragonRising Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Hannibal
    Posted: 11-Aug-2012 at 23:58
What is your opinion of the legendary figure known as Hannibal?


HANNIBAL, the famous son of Hamilcar Barca, was born in 247 B.C. When he was nine years old, he accompanied his father on a Spanish expedition; and before starting, swore the oath of eternal hatred to the Roman name, which he kept so faithfully throughout his whole life. After the death of Hamilcar, he was employed by Hasdrubal, his brother-in-law, in most of the military operations which he undertook. Such was the esteem in which he was held by the soldiers, and such a reputation for bravery and strategic skill had he gained, that when Hasdrubal was assassinated, the army with one voice elected him Commander-in-Chief, an appointment which the authorities at Carthage at once ratified. Hannibal, at this time in his 29th year, undertook the command with ready zeal, for he longed to realize the legacy left him by his father, and to strike a death-blow at his county's rival by attacking her on her own soil. He started from New Carthage in 218 B.C., with 90,000 foot and 12,OOO horse. This force was very much thinned by his contests with the tribes between the Iberus and the Pyrenees, by the necessity of leaving Hanno with 11,000 men to keep them in subjection, and by his sending home a portion of his Spanish troops. His object in this last act was to inspire the soldiers with thorough confidence in themselves and their general. From the Pyrenees he marched to the Rhone without opposition, since Scipio was at Massilia (Marseilles.) His next great difficulty was the passage of the Alps, which he effected in fifteen days, in spite of the attacks of the mountain tribes, the snows, storms, and other difficulties. After allowing his army, (now about 26,000 strong,) some time to recruit, he first subdued the Taurini, and took their chief city after a siege of three days. Scipio having returned from Massilia, took command of the army in the north of Italy, and first met Hannibal on the plains near the river Ticinus. The Romans were entirely defeated; and Scipio, who was severely wounded, retreated across the Po. The armies again met at the Trebia, with a like resuit, though the Romans, who had received reinforcements, were much more numerous. These battles were fought in 218 B.C. Hannibal next inflicted a severe defeat, near Lake Thrasymene, on the Consul Flaminius; thousands perished by the sword, including the Consul, and thousands in the lake, while fifteen thousand were taken captive, Hannibal only losing 1500. He wintered at Cannae, and in June, or according to others in August, (2nd,) almost annihiiated a Roman army of 90,000 men under Terentius Varro and Aemilius Paulus, and a host of Roman Knights, Senators, and other distinguished persons.

Hannibal's great purpose now, was to arm the Italian nations against Rome, and so to crush her power by means of her own subjects; the Romans on the contrary, henceforth avoided coming to a pitched battle with the Carthagenians, but sought rather to keep the tribes in awe, and harass Hannibal and his lieutenants by small armies in different parts of the country.

Hannibal traversed Italy in all directions, surprising the Roman generals, defeating their armies, and capturing their towns. The defeat of Hasdrubal, his brother, at the River Metaurus, and the loss of his army, compelled Hannibal to confine himself to the mountainous peninsula of Brutium, where for four years he resisted all the efforts of the Romans to dislodge him. At length, after having maintained himself in Italy for upwards of fifteen years, he was recalled to Africa, to defend his country against Scipio. But notwithstanding his utmost endeavors, and the bravery of his veteran troops, he was defeated by Scipio, near Zama, with the loss of 20,000 men. Peace was concluded in the following year.

Hannibal's daring scheme had in the meantime been baffled, but his hatred to Rome had not diminished, and accordingly he set himself with all his zeal to make preparations for a still more deadly struggle at some future day. He turned his attention, in the first place, to political reforms, and some constitutional changes which were loudly called for, by which he placed the finances on a better footing. But his enemies accused him to the Romans of stirring up Antiochus III of Syria, to make war on them: and when ambassadors came to Carthage, Hannibal fled to the court of Antiochus at Ephesus. In the war which followed, he took no conspicuous part, but the King bitterly regretted afterwards that he did not take the advice of Hannibal to carry the war into Italy.

When peace was concluded, the surrender of Hannibal was one of the conditions; but foreseeing such a result, he fled to Prusias, King of Bithynia, for whom he gained a naval victory over Eumenes, King of Pergamus. He was at length demanded by the Romans; and seeing no way of escape, he took poison, which he always carried with him for such an emergency.

http://www.sacklunch.net/biography/H/Hannibal.html

What a handsome figure of a dragon. No wonder I fall madly in love with the Alani Dragon now, the avatar, it's a gorgeous dragon picture.
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  Quote Delenda est Roma Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12-Aug-2012 at 00:13
Well this isn't a very good bio. Hannibal never swore to be an enemy of Rome supposedly and using hearsay Coelius Antipater records he told Antiochus he swore he would never be a friend of Rome which was then synonymous to vassal or subject. Hannibal did in fact fight the battle of Eurymedon river while under Antiochus. Anyway he was a masterful and genius general and a very good politician. He reformed Carthage after the war.
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  Quote TheAlaniDragonRising Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12-Aug-2012 at 00:28
Originally posted by Delenda est Roma

Well this isn't a very good bio. Hannibal never swore to be an enemy of Rome supposedly and using hearsay Coelius Antipater records he told Antiochus he swore he would never be a friend of Rome which was then synonymous to vassal or subject. Hannibal did in fact fight the battle of Eurymedon river while under Antiochus. Anyway he was a masterful and genius general and a very good politician. He reformed Carthage after the war.
Please be free to add one of the other versions of a bio for Hannibal, as you see fit.Smile
What a handsome figure of a dragon. No wonder I fall madly in love with the Alani Dragon now, the avatar, it's a gorgeous dragon picture.
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  Quote Delenda est Roma Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12-Aug-2012 at 00:39
My favorite has over 700 pages :)
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  Quote Centrix Vigilis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12-Aug-2012 at 01:06
As I noted elsewhere.....He was a certified brilliant tactician and leader of men. A better then average statesman and contrary to the dilemma observed reference the question of whether he hated the Romans?
Immaterial.
He remained their inveterate foe and enemy all the days of his life.
 
 
As for bios...personally I avoid the newer until I have examined the older and there are numerous. And a very long time ago...I learned every bio writer, trained historian or other, has an agenda reference their subject matter.
 
Abbot's was one of the better. But like all things that is commensurate with ones appreciation of the research and objectivity; not to mention the usage of era contextual resources in the creation. I also enjoyed Livy who as most of his contemporaries hated to love the man.
 
 
Had he been a Roman he would have stood with a very select few. Sulla-Scipio-Marius-Caesar and perhaps Germanicus. But as a Carthaginian he was peerless. The Romans to their credit hated him but admired him enough to show their respect in their own way. They feared his might as a warrior chieftain but they also never feared their ability to continue to confront him.  And they did and ultimately were proven the victor. And if he is given short shrift for centuries it's because they won.. he lost... and history, well into the mid medieval ages, was largely Roman and Byzantine based. Not Carthagian.
 
 
 
 
 
But I am pleased we have a new emergence of interest in classical leaders and warfare among us.
 
 
Ntl.....remember all of you......objectivity and civil discourse. As a former Officer and Instructor, Combat Soldier and trainer; and Asst Professor of Military Science, not to mention a blog moderator....it is what best facilitates communications.
 
 
And I am equally pleased, as is no doubt my old friend the Admin-owner, to see it reference this subject matter.Clap
 
 
 
Carry on.
 
"Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence"

S. T. Friedman


Pilger's law: 'If it's been officially denied, then it's probably true'

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  Quote Delenda est Roma Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12-Aug-2012 at 01:16
I have the original 1854 printing of Abbot's book for 10$ awesome condition :). Not my favorite bio on Hannibal personally. Hannibal by Dodge or Hannibal by Serge Lancel are some of the best out their and I own and approve of both heartily. Hannibal was by any comparison or standard one of the best military commanders ever, hence his status as a great captain.
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  Quote Don Quixote Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12-Aug-2012 at 03:18
Hannibal - very creative man. I'd say he has some romantism wrapped around him, fully deserved.
However, I use the word "genuis"very very sparingly /I hadn't used it yet here/, so casting my vote I'll use simply "great".


Edited by Don Quixote - 12-Aug-2012 at 03:19
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  Quote Delenda est Roma Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12-Aug-2012 at 09:21
Ah but this man is the incarnation of the word. Cannae can be a testament to that.
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  Quote Delenda est Roma Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02-Sep-2012 at 13:17
So can Trasimene, Tagus River, Trebia, Silarus and both Herdonias.
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  Quote aron11 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01-Nov-2014 at 05:42

To his disappointment, two parties were developing by the end of his first term. Wearied of politics, feeling old, he retired at the end of his second. In his Farewell Address, he urged his countrymen to forswear excessive party spirit and geographical distinctions. In foreign affairs, he warned against long-term alliances.


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