Hannibal's Preparations and Speech
Such was Scipio's address to his men. Meanwhile
Hannibal's order of battle.
Hannibal had put his men also into position. His
elephants, which numbered more than eighty, he
placed in the van of the whole army. Next his
mercenaries, amounting to twelve thousand, and consisting of
Ligurians, Celts, Baliarians, and Mauretani; behind them
the native Libyans and Carthaginians; and on the rear of the
whole the men whom he had brought from Italy, at a distance
of somewhat more than a stade. His wings he strengthened
with cavalry, stationing the Numidian allies on the left wing,
and the Carthaginian horsemen on the right. He ordered
each officer to address his own men, bidding them rest their
hopes of victory on him and the army he had brought with
him; while he bade their officers remind the Carthaginians
in plain terms what would happen to their wives and children
if the battle should be lost. While these orders were carried
out by the officers, Hannibal himself went along the lines of
his Italian army and urged them "to remember the seventeen
years during which they had been brothers-inarms, and the number of battles they had fought
with the Romans, in which they had never been
beaten or given the Romans even a hope of victory.
Hannibal's speech to the "army of Italy."
all, putting aside minor engagements and their countless successes, let them place before their eyes the battle of the River
Trebia against the father of the present Roman commander;
and again the battle in Etruria against Flaminius; and
lastly that at Cannae against Aemilius, with none of which
was the present struggle to be compared, whether in regard
to the number or excellence of the enemy's men. Let
them only raise their eyes and look at the ranks of the
enemy; they would see that they were not merely fewer, but
many times fewer than those with whom they had fought
before, while, as to their soldierly qualities, there was no comparison. The former Roman armies had come to the struggle
with them untainted by memories of past defeats: while these
men were the sons or the remnants of those who had been
beaten in Italy, and fled before him again and again. They
ought not therefore," he said, "to undo the glory and fame
of their previous achievements, but to struggle with a firm and
brave resolve to maintain their reputation of invincibility."
Such were the addresses of the two commanders.