Then the Carthaginians ordered Hannibal to break the truce and begin war against Scipio, and to fight as soon as possible on account of the scarcity of provisions. Accordingly he sent word that the truce was at an end. Scipio marched immediately, and took the great city of Partha and encamped near Hannibal. The latter moved off, but he sent three spies into the Roman camp who were captured by Scipio. The latter did not put them to death, however, according to the custom of dealing with spies, but ordered that they should be taken around and shown the camp, the arsenals, the engines, and the army under review. He then set them free so that they might inform Hannibal concerning all these things. The latter deemed it advisable to have a parley with Scipio, and when it was granted he said that the Carthaginians had rejected the former treaty on account of the money indemnity. If he would remit that, and if the Romans would content themselves with Sicily, Spain, and the islands they now held, the agreement would be lasting. "Hannibal's escape from Italy would be a great gain to him," said Scipio, "if he could obtain these terms in addition." He then forbade Hannibal to send any more messages to him. After indulging in some mutual threats they departed, each to his own camp.
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THE PUNIC WARS
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