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Hamilcar Captures Spendius

But when they had used up for food the captives in this horrible manner, and then the bodies of their slaves, and still no one came to their relief from Tunes, their sufferings became too dreadful to bear; and the common soldiers broke out into open threats of violence against their officers. Thereupon Autaritus, Zarzas, and Spendius decided to put themselves into the hands of the enemy and to hold a parley with Hamilcar, and try to make terms. They accordingly sent a herald and obtained permission for the despatch of an embassy.
Spendius and Autaritus fall into the hands of Hamilcar.
It consisted of ten ambassadors, who, on their arrival at the Carthaginian camp, concluded an agreement with Hamilcar on these terms: "The Carthaginians may select any ten men they choose from the enemy, and allow the rest to depart with one tunic apiece." No sooner had these terms been agreed to, than Hamilcar said at once that he selected, according to the terms of the agreement, the ten ambassadors themselves. The Carthaginians thus got possession of Autaritus, Spendius, and the other most conspicuous officers. The Libyans saw that their officers were arrested, and not knowing the terms of the treaty, believed that some perfidy was being practised against them, and accordingly flew to seize their arms. Hamilcar thereupon surrounded them with his elephants and his entire force, and destroyed them to a man. This slaughter, by which more than forty thousand perished, took place near a place called the Saw, so named from its shape resembling that tool.

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