|Brian Gelbach March 3, 2012
Hannibal was a brilliant military general and strategist, who is best known for his invaluable help in commanding Carthage in the Second Punic War.
Hannibal was the son of commander Hamilcar Barca. Hamilcar was the commander of Carthage in the First Punic War. When Hannibal was just nine years old, He would accompany his dad on campaigns, including when Hamilcar conquered Spain. He was his brother, Hasdrubal, military leader until 221 B.C., when Hasdrubal died and Hannibal was elected commander-in-chief. (i-cias.com.)
As commander-in-chief, Hannibal captured many lands. In 219, after seizing Saguntum, Spain (now Sagunto,) Rome demanded that Hannibal give the land up. Carthage refused to withdrawal, and the Second Punic War was started. Hannibal took an unusual approach and chose to lead his 50,000 infantry, 9,000 cavalry, and 60 elephants from Spain through the Alps to attack the Romans. (www.britannica.com)
For many years, Hannibal and his army continued their trek through the Alps, facing many challenges including landslides, snowstorms, and attacks from other tribes. It is thought that he lost 15,000 men on his journey. He finally invaded Northern Italy and stayed there for many years and lived off the land, waiting to fight. Cartage won many battles in Italy, the greatest being Cannae in 216. Even though they won a lot of battles, they still couldn’t defeat Rome itself. To defeat Hannibal, Rome used general Scipio. Scipio was planning to attack Carthage, which led Hannibal to return to Carthage. In 202, Hannibal was finally defeated at Zama. This led to peace with Rome until the Third Punic War. Hannibal died in 182 B.C.
Kjeilen, Tore. “Hannibal.” I-cias.com. Look Lex Encyclopedia. 3 March 2012.
“Phoenicians: Carthage & Hannibal.” Phoenician.org. Sanford Holst. 3 March 2012.
“Second Punic War.” Britannica.com. Encyclopedia Britannica Inc. 3 March 2012.