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PERHAPS a resumé of events in each Olympiad may arrest the attention of my readers both by their number and importance, the transactions in every part of the world being brought under one view.
144th Olympiad, B. C. 204-200.
However, I think the events of this Olympiad especially will do so; because in it the wars in Italy and Libya came to an end; and I cannot imagine any one not caring to inquire what sort of catastrophe and conclusion they had. For everybody, though extremely interested in details and particulars, naturally longs to be told the end of a story. I may add that it was in this period also that the kings gave the clearest indication of their character and policy. For what was only rumour in regard to them before was now become a matter of clear and universal knowledge, even to those who did not care to take part in public business. Therefore, as I wished to make my narrative worthy of its subject, I have not, as in former instances, included the history of two years in one book. . . .

Elected Consul for B.C. 205 (see 11, 33) Scipio had Sicily assigned as his provincia, with leave to cross to Africa if necessary (Livy, 28, 45). He sent Laelius to Africa in B.C. 205, but remained himself in Sicily. Next spring (B.C. 204) he crossed to Africa with a year's additional imperium. In the course of this year he ravaged the Carthaginian territory and besieged Utica (Livy, 29, 35), and at the beginning of B.C. 203 his imperium was prolonged till he should have finished the war (id. 30, 1).

Scipio Plans To Attack the Punic Camp

While the Consuls were thus engaged,1 Scipio in Libya learnt during the winter that the Carthaginians were fitting out a fleet; he therefore devoted himself to similar preparations as well as to pressing on the siege of Utica.
B. C. 203. Cn. Servilius Caepio, C. Servilius Geminus Coss. Livy, 30, 1.
He did not, however, give up all hopes of Syphax; but as their forces were not far apart he kept sending messages to him, convinced that he would be able to detach him from the Carthaginians. He still cherished the belief that Syphax was getting tired of the girl2 for whose sake he had joined the Carthaginians, and of his alliance with the Punic people generally; for the Numidians, he knew, were naturally quick to feel satiety, and constant neither to gods nor men. Scipio's mind, however, was distracted with various anxieties, and his prospects were far from seeming secure to him; for he shrank from an engagement in the open field on account of the enemy's great superiority in numbers. He therefore seized an opportunity which now presented itself. Some of his messengers to Syphax reported to him that the Carthaginians had constructed their huts in their winter camp of various kinds of wood and boughs without any earth; while the old army of the Numidians made theirs of reeds, and the reinforcements which were now coming in from the neighbouring townships constructed theirs of boughs only, some of them inside the trench and palisade, but the greater number outside. Scipio therefore made up his mind that the manner of attacking them, which would be most unexpected by the enemy and most successful for himself, would be by fire. He therefore turned his attention to organising such an attack.
The proposal of Syphax.
Now, in his communications with Scipio, Syphax was continually harping upon his proposal that the Carthaginians should evacuate Italy and the Romans Libya; and that the possessions held by either between these two countries should remain in statu quo. Hitherto Scipio had refused to listen to this suggestion, but he now gave Syphax a hint by the mouth of his messengers that the course he wished to see followed was not impossible. Greatly elated at this, Syphax became much bolder than before in his communications with Scipio; the numbers of the messengers sent backwards and forwards, and the frequency of their visits, were redoubled; and they sometimes even stayed several days in each other's camps without any thought of precaution. On these occasions Scipio always took care to send, with the envoys, some men of tried experience or of military knowledge, dressed up as slaves in rough and common clothes, that they might examine and investigate in security the approaches and entrances to both the entrenchments. For there were two camps, one that of Hasdrubal, containing thirty thousand infantry and three thousand cavalry; and another about ten stades distant from it of the Numidians, containing ten thousand cavalry and about fifty thousand infantry. The latter was the easier of approach, and its huts were well calculated for being set on fire, because, as I said before, the Numidians had not made theirs of timber and earth, but used simply reeds and thatch in their construction.

Scipio Prepares to Attack Utica by Sea

By the beginning of spring Scipio had completed the
Spring of B. C. 203.
reconnaissances necessary for this attempt upon the enemy; and he began launching his ships, and getting the engines on them into working order, as though with the purpose of assaulting Utica by sea. With his land forces he once more occupied the high ground overlooking the town, and carefully fortified it and secured it by trenches. He wished the enemy to believe that he was doing this for the sake of carrying on the siege; but he really meant it as a cover for his men, who were to be engaged in the undertaking described above, to prevent the garrison sallying out, when the legions were separated from their lines, assaulting the palisade which was so near to them, and attacking the division left in charge of it. Whilst in the midst of these preparations, he sent to Syphax inquiring whether, "in case he agreed to his proposals, the Carthaginians would assent, and not say again that they would deliberate on the terms?" He ordered these legates at the same time not to return to him, until they had received an answer on these points. When the envoys arrived, the Numidian king was convinced that Scipio was on the point of concluding the agreement, partly from the fact that the ambassadors said that they would not go away until they got his answer, and partly because of the anxiety expressed as to the disposition of the Carthaginians. He therefore sent immediately to Hasdrubal, stating the facts and urging him to accept the peace. Meanwhile he neglected all precautions himself, and allowed the Numidians, who were now joining, to pitch their tents where they were, outside the lines. Scipio in appearance acted in the same way, while in reality he was pushing on his preparations with the utmost care. When a message was returned from the Carthaginians bidding Syphax complete the treaty of peace, the Numidian king, in a state of great exaltation, communicated the news to the envoys; who immediately departed to their own camp to inform Scipio from the king of what had been done. As soon as he heard it, the Roman general at once sent fresh envoys to inform Syphax that Scipio was quite satisfied and was anxious for the peace; but that the members of his council differed from him, and held that they should remain as they were. The ambassadors duly arrived and informed the Numidians of this.
Scipio's ruse to deceive Syphax.
Scipio sent this mission to avoid the appearance of a breach of truce, if he should perform any act of hostility while negotiations for peace were still going on between the parties. He considered that, by making this statement, he would be free to act in whatever way he chose without laying himself open to blame.

Syphax and Hasdrubal Are Deluded

Syphax's annoyance at this message was great, in proportion to the hopes he had previously entertained of making the peace. He had an interview with Hasdrubal, and told him of the message he had received from the Romans; but though they deliberated long and earnestly as to what they ought to do, they neither had any idea or conjecture as to what was really going to happen. For they had no anticipation whatever as to the need of taking precautions, or of any danger threatening them, but were all eagerness and excitement to strike some blow, and thus provoke the enemy to descend into the level ground.
Scipio discloses his project.
Meanwhile Scipio allowed his army generally, by the preparations he was making and the orders he was issuing, to imagine that his aim was the capture of Utica; but summoning the most able and trusty Tribunes at noon, he imparted to them his design, and ordered them to cause their men to get their supper early, and then to lead the legions outside the camp as soon as the buglers gave the usual signal by a simultaneous blast of their bugles. For it is a custom in the Roman army for the trumpeters and buglers to sound a call near the commander's tent at supper time, that the night pickets may then take up their proper positions. Scipio next summoned the spies whom he had sent at different times to reconnoitre the enemy's quarters, and carefully compared and studied the accounts they gave about the roads leading to the hostile camps and the entrances to them, employing Massanissa to criticise their words and assist him with his advice, because he was acquainted with the locality.

The Romans Burn the Enemy Camp

Everything being prepared for his expedition, Scipio left a sufficiently strong guard in the camp, and got the rest of the men on the march towards the end of the first watch, the enemy being about sixty stades distant. Arrived in the neighbourhood of the enemy, about the end of the third watch, he assigned to Gaius Laelius and Massanissa half his Roman soldiers and all his Numidians, with orders to attack the camp of Syphax, urging them to quit themselves like brave men and do nothing carelessly; with the clear understanding that, as the darkness hindered and prevented the use of the eyes, a night attack required all the more the assistance of a cool head and a firm heart. The rest of the army he took the command of in person, and led against Hasdrubal. He had calculated on not beginning his assault until Laelius's division had set fire to the enemy's huts; he therefore proceeded slowly.
Destruction of the camp of Syphax by C. Laelius and Massanissa,
The latter meanwhile advanced in two divisions, which attacked the enemy simultaneously. The construction of the huts being as though purposely contrived to be susceptible of a conflagration, as I have already explained, as soon as the front rank men began to set light to them, the fire caught all the first row of huts fiercely, and soon got beyond all control, from the closeness of the huts to each other, and the amount of combustible material which they contained. Laelius remained in the rear as a reserve; but Massanissa, knowing the localities through which those who fled from the fire would be sure to retreat, stationed his own soldiers at those spots. Not a single Numidian had any suspicion of the true state of the case, not even Syphax himself; but thinking that it was a mere accidental conflagration of the rampart, some of them started unsuspiciously out of bed, others sprang out of their tents in the midst of a carouse and with the cup actually at their lips. The result was that numbers of them got trampled to death by their own friends at the exits from the camp; many were caught by the flames and burnt to death; while all those who escaped the flame fell into the hands of the enemy, and were killed, without knowing what was happening to them or what they were doing.

Dreadful Scene In the Burning Camps

At the same time the Carthaginians, observing the
and of Hasdrubal.
proportions of the conflagration and the hugeness of the flame that was rising, imagined that the Numidian camp had been accidentally set on fire. Some of them therefore started at once to render assistance, and all the rest hurried outside their own camp unarmed, and stood there gazing in astonishment at the spectacle. Everything having thus succeeded to his best wishes, Scipio fell upon these men outside their camp, and either put them to the sword, or, driving them back into the camp, set fire to their huts. The disaster of the Punic army was thus very like that which had just befallen the Numidians, fire and sword in both cases combining to destroy them. Hasdrubal immediately gave up all idea of combating the fire, for he knew from the coincidence of the two that the fire in the Numidian camp was not accidental, as he had supposed, but had originated from some desperate design of the enemy. He therefore turned his attention to saving his own life, although there was now little hope left of doing so. For the fire was spreading rapidly and was catching everywhere; while the camp gangways were full of horses, beasts of burden, and men, some of them half dead and devoured by the fire, and others in a state of such frantic terror and mad excitement that they prevented any attempts at making a defence, and by the utter tumult and confusion which they created rendered all chance of escape hopeless. The case of Syphax was the same as that of Hasdrubal, as it was also that of the other officers. The two former, however, did manage to escape, accompanied by a few horsemen: but all those myriads of men, horses, and beasts of burden, either met a miserable and pitiable death from the fire, or, if they escaped the violence of that, some of the men perished ignominiously at the hands of the enemy, cut down naked and defenceless, not only without their arms, but without so much as their clothes to cover them. The whole place was filled with yells of pain, confused cries, terror, and unspeakable din, mingled with a conflagration which spread rapidly and blazed with the utmost fierceness. It was the combination and suddenness of these horrors that made them so awful, any one of which by itself would have been sufficient to strike terror into the hearts of men. It is accordingly impossible for the imagination to exaggerate the dreadful scene, so completely did it surpass in horror everything hitherto recorded. Of all the brilliant achievements of Scipio this appears to me to have been the most brilliant and the most daring. . . .

Anda Surrenders to Rome

When day broke, and he found the enemy either killed
Hasdrubal at Anda, see Appian, 4, 24.
or in headlong flight, Scipio exhorted his Tribunes to activity, and at once started in pursuit. At first the Carthaginian general seemed inclined to stand his ground, though told of Scipio's approach, trusting in the strength of the town [of Anda]; but when he saw that the inhabitants were in a mutinous state, he shrank from meeting the attack of Scipio, and fled with the relics of his army, which consisted of as many as five hundred cavalry and about two thousand infantry. The inhabitants of the town thereupon submitted unconditionally to the Romans, and were spared by Scipio, who, however, gave up two neighbouring towns to the legions to plunder. This being done he returned to his original entrenchment. Baffled in the hopes which they had entertained of the course which the campaign would take, the Carthaginians were deeply depressed.
Dismay at Carthage.
They had expected to shut up the Romans on the promontory near Utica, which had been the site of their winter quarters, and besiege them there with their army and fleet both by sea and land. With this view all their preparations had been made; and when they saw, quite contrary to their calculations, that they were not only driven from the open country by the enemy, but were in hourly expectation of an attack upon themselves and their city, they became completely disheartened and panic-stricken. Their circumstances, however, admitted of no delay. They were compelled at once to take precautions and adopt some measures for the future. But the senate was filled with doubt and varied and confused suggestions. Some said that they ought to send for Hannibal and recall him from Italy, their one hope of safety being now centred in that general and his forces. Others were for an embassy to Scipio to obtain a truce and discuss with him the terms of a pacification and treaty.
The Senate, however, resolves to continue their resistance.
Others again were for keeping up their courage and collecting their forces, and sending a message to Syphax; who, they said, was at the neighbouring town of Abba, engaged in collecting the remnants of his army. This last suggestion was the one which ultimately prevailed. The Government of Carthage accordingly set about collecting troops, and sent a despatch to Syphax begging him to support them and abide by his original policy, as a general with an army would presently join him.

Carthaginians Reinforced and Resolute

Meanwhile the Roman commander was pressing on the seige of Utica. But when he heard that Syphax was still in position, and that the Carthaginians were once more collecting an army, he led out his forces and pitched his camp close under the walls of Utica. At the same time he divided the booty among the soldiers. . . .3 The merchants who purchased them from the soldiers went away with very profitable bargains; for the recent victory inspired the soldiers with high hopes of a successful conclusion of the campaign, and they therefore thought little of the spoils already obtained, and made no difficulties in selling them to the merchants.
Syphax is persuaded by Sophanisba to stand by the Carthaginians still.

The Numidian king and his friends were at first minded to continue their retreat to their own land. But while deliberating on this, certain Celtiberes, over four thousand in number, who had been hired as soldiers by the Carthaginians, arrived in the vicinity of Abba. Encouraged by this additional strength the Numidians stopped on their retreat. And when the young lady, who was daughter of Hasdrubal and wife of Syphax, added her earnest entreaties that he would remain and not abandon the Carthaginians at such a crisis, the Numidian king gave way and consented to her prayer. The approach of these Celtiberes did a great deal also to encourage the hopes of the Carthaginians: for instead of four thousand, it was reported at Carthage that they were ten thousand, and that their bravery and the excellency of their arms made them irresistible in the field. Excited by this rumour, and by the boastful talk which was current among the common people, the Carthaginians felt their resolution to once more take the field redoubled.

The Carthaginians again take the field.
And finally, within thirty days, they pitched a camp in conjunction with the Numidians and Celtiberes on what are called the Great Plains, with an army amounting to no less than thirty thousand.

Scipio Determines to Attack

When news of these proceedings reached the Roman camp Scipio immediately determined to attack. Leaving orders, therefore, to the army and navy, which were besieging Utica, as to what they were to do, he started with all his army in light marching order. On the fifth day he reached the Great Plains, and during the first day after his arrival encamped on a piece of rising ground about thirty stades from the enemy. Next day he descended into the plain and drew up his army4 at a distance of seven stades from the enemy, with his cavalry forming an advanced guard. After skirmishing attacks carried on by both sides during the next two days, on the fourth both armies were deliberately brought out into position and drawn up in order of battle.
The battle on the Great Plains. 24th June, B. C. 203.
Scipio followed exactly the Roman system, stationing the maniples of hastati in the front, behind them the principes, and lastly the triarii in the rear. Of his cavalry he stationed the Italians on the right wing, the Numidians and Massanissa on the left. Syphax and Hasdrubal stationed the Celtiberes in the centre opposite the Roman cohorts, the Numidians on the left, and the Carthaginians on the right.
The Roman wings are both victorious.
At the very first charge the Numidians reeled before the Italian cavalry, and the Carthaginians before those under Massanissa; for their many previous defeats had completely demoralised them. But the Celtiberes fought gallantly, for they had no hope of saving themselves by flight, being entirely unacquainted with the country; nor any expectation of being spared if they were taken prisoners on account of their perfidy to Scipio: for they were regarded as having acted in defiance of justice and of their treaty in coming to aid the Carthaginians against the Romans, though they had never suffered any act of hostility at Scipio's hands during the campaigns in Iberia.
The Celtiberes, on the centre, are cut to pieces after a gallant resistance.
When, however, the two wings gave way these men were surrounded by the principes and triarii, and cut to pieces on the field almost to a man. Thus perished the Celtiberes, who yet did very effective service to the Carthaginians, not only during the whole battle, but during the retreat also; for, if it had not been for the hindrance caused by them, the Romans would have pressed the fugitives closely, and very few of the enemy would have escaped.
Syphax and Hasdrubal escape.
As it was, owing to the delay caused by these men, Syphax and his cavalry effected their retreat to his own kingdom in safety; while Hasdrubal with the survivors of his army did the same to Carthage.

Scipio's Victory On the Great Plains

After making the necessary arrangements as to the booty
Scipio receives the submission of the country, while Laelius goes in pursuit of Syphax.
and prisoners, Scipio summoned a council of war to consult as to what to do next. It was resolved that Scipio himself and one part of the army should stay in the country and visit the various towns; while Laelius and Massanissa, with the Numidians and the rest of the Roman legions, should pursue Syphax and give him no time to deliberate or make any preparations. This being settled the commanders separated; the two latter going with their division in pursuit of Syphax, Scipio on a round of the townships. Some of these were terrified into a voluntary submission to the Romans, others he promptly took by assault. The whole country was ripe for a change, owing to the constant series of miseries and contributions, under which it had been groaning from the protracted wars in Iberia.

In Carthage meanwhile, where the panic had been great

A panic at Carthage.
enough before, a still wilder state of excitement prevailed, after this second disaster, and the disappointment of the hopes of success which they had entertained. However, those of the counsellors who claimed the highest character for courage urged that they should go on board their ships and attack the besiegers of Utica, try to raise the blockade, and engage the enemy at sea, who were not in a forward state of preparation in that department; that they should recall Hannibal, and without delay test to the utmost this one more chance: for both these measures offered great and reasonable opportunities of securing their safety. Others declared that their circumstances no longer admitted of these measures: what they had to do was to fortify their town and prepare to stand a siege; for chance would give them many occasions of striking a successful blow if they only held together. At the same time they advised that they should deliberate on coming to terms and making a treaty, and see on what conditions and by what means they might extricate themselves from the danger. After a long debate, all these proposals were adopted together.

Scipio Fears a Carthaginian Attack on the Fleet

Upon this decision being come to, those who were to sail to Italy went straight from the council chamber to the sea, while the Navarch went to prepare the ships. The rest began to take measures for securing the city, and remained in constant consultation on the measures necessary for the purpose.

Meanwhile Scipio's camp was getting gorged with booty; for he found no one to resist him, and everybody yielded to his attacks. He therefore determined to despatch the greater part of the booty to his original camp; while he advanced with his army in light marching order to seize the entrenchment near Tunes, and pitched his camp within the view of the inhabitants of Carthage, thinking that this would do more than anything else to strike terror into their hearts and lower their courage.

The Carthaginians had in a few days manned and provisioned their ships, and were engaged in getting under sail and carrying out their plan of operations, when Scipio arrived at Tunes, and, the garrison flying at his approach, occupied the town, which is about a hundred stades from Carthage, of remarkable strength both natural and artificial, and visible from nearly every point of Carthage.

Just as the Romans pitched their camp there, the Carthaginians were putting out to sea on board their

Scipio recalled to Utica by the fear of an attack upon his fleet.
ships to sail to Utica. Seeing the enemy thus putting out, and fearing some misfortune to his own fleet, Scipio was rendered exceedingly anxious, because no one there was prepared for such an attack, or had anything in readiness to meet the danger. He therefore broke up his camp and marched back in haste to support his men. There he found his decked ships thoroughly well fitted out for raising siege-engines and applying them to walls, and generally for all purposes of an assault upon a town, but not in the least in the trim for a sea-fight; while the enemy's fleet had been under process of rigging for this purpose the whole winter. He therefore gave up all idea of putting to sea to meet the enemy and accepting battle there; but anchoring his decked ships side by side he moored the transports round them, three or four deep; and then, taking down the masts and yard-arms, he lashed the vessels together firmly by means of these, keeping a space between each sufficient to enable the light craft to sail in and out. . . .

Women at Alexandria

Philo was a parasite of Agathocles, the son of Oenanthe,
The extraordinary influence of women of low character at Alexandria.
and the friend of king Philopator. Many statues of Cleino, the girl who acted as cupbearer to Ptolemy Philadelphus, were set up at Alexandria, draped in a single tunic and holding a cup in the hands. And are not the most splendid houses there those which go by the names of Murtium, Mnesis, and Pothine? And yet Mnesis was a flute-girl, as was Pothine, and Murtium was a public prostitute. And was not Agathocleia, the mistress of king Ptolemy Philopator, an influential personage,—she who was the ruin of the whole kingdom? . . .

Ptolemy Philopator, B.C. 222-205

The question may be asked, perhaps, why I have
The feeble character of Ptolemy Philopator.
chosen to give a sketch of Egyptian history here, going back a considerable period; whereas, in the case of the rest of my history, I have recorded the events of each year in the several countries side by side? I have done so for the following reasons: Ptolemy Philopator, of whom I am now speaking, after the conclusion of the war for the possession of Coele-Syria,5 abandoned all noble pursuits and gave himself up to the life of debauchery which I have just described. But late in life he was compelled by circumstances to engage in the war I have mentioned,6 which, over and above the mutual cruelty and lawlessness with which it was conducted, witnessed neither pitched battle, sea fight, siege, or anything else worth recording. I thought, therefore, that it would be easier for me as a writer, and more intelligible to my readers, if I did not touch upon everything year by year as it occurred, or give a full account of transactions which were insignificant and undeserving of serious attention; but should once for all sum up and describe the character and policy of this king.

1 Caepio was commanding in Bruttium, Servilius in Etruria and Liguria. Livy, 30, 1.

2 Sophanisba, the daughter of Hasdrubal son of Gesco. Livy, 29, 23; 30, 12, 15.

3 Some words are lost from the text.

4 παρενέβαλλε, which Schweig. translates castra locavit: but though the word does sometimes bear that meaning, I cannot think that it does so here. Scipio seems to have retained his camp on the hill, only two and a half miles' distant, and to have come down into the plain to offer battle each of the three days. Hence the imperfect.

5 The war with Antiochus, B.C. 218-217. See 5, 40, 58-71, 79-87.

6 A civil war, apparently in a rebellion caused by his own feeble and vicious character. It seems to be that referred to in 5, 107.

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