In B. He then marched his massive army across the Pyrenees and Alps into central Italy in what would be remembered as one of the most famous campaigns in history. After a string of victories, the most notable coming at Cannae in B. The Romans rebounded, however, driving the Carthaginians out of Spain and launching an invasion of North Africa.
Hannibal’s Early Life and Attack on Saguntum
Who Was Hannibal?
Hannibal , born bce , North Africa—died c. Hannibal was the son of the great Carthaginian general Hamilcar Barca. The Greek historian Polybius and the Roman historian Livy are the two primary sources for his life. According to them, Hannibal was taken to Spain by his father and at an early age was made to swear eternal hostility to Rome. It is clear that Hannibal emerged as a successful officer, for, on the assassination of Hasdrubal in , the army proclaimed him, at age 26, its commander in chief, and the Carthaginian government quickly ratified his field appointment. Hannibal immediately turned himself to the consolidation of the Punic hold on Spain. He married a Spanish princess, Imilce, and then conquered various Spanish tribes. He fought against the Olcades and captured their capital, Althaea, and he quelled the Vaccaei in the northwest. In , making the seaport of Kart-hadasht modern Cartagena , Spain his base, he won a resounding victory over the Carpetani in the region of the Tagus River. In the treaty between Rome and Carthage subsequent to the First Punic War — , the Ebro had been set as the northern limit of Carthaginian influence in the Iberian Peninsula.
The Question Is Hard to Answer
He was the greatest enemy of the Roman Republic. Hannibal is most famous for what he did in the Second Punic War. He marched an army from Iberia over the Pyrenees mountains and the Alps mountains into northern Italy and defeated the Romans in a series of battles. At the Battle of Cannae he defeated the largest army Rome had ever put together. The Roman army is reckoned at 16 legions and a total of 86, men. He kept an army in Italy for many years. Eventually, a Roman invasion of North Africa made him return to Carthage. He lost, and the Romans made him leave Carthage. He lived at the Seleucid court, and convinced its Emperor to fight Rome. When he lost a naval battle, Hannibal fled to the Bithynian court.
He is widely considered one of the greatest military commanders in world history. His younger brothers were Mago and Hasdrubal , and he was brother-in-law to Hasdrubal the Fair ; who also commanded Carthaginian armies. Hannibal lived during a period of great tension in the western Mediterranean Basin, triggered by the emergence of the Roman Republic as a great power after it had established its supremacy over Italy.