Siege of Syracuse (213–212 BC)
The Siege of Syracuse by the Roman Republic took place in 213–212 BC, at the end of which the Magna Graecia Hellenistic city of Syracuse, located on the east coast of Sicily, fell. The Romans stormed the city after a protracted siege giving them control of the entire island of Sicily. During the siege, the city was protected by weapons developed by Archimedes. Archimedes, the great inventor and polymath, was slain at the conclusion of the siege by a Roman soldier, in contravention of the Roman proconsul Marcellus' instructions to spare his life. Sicily, wrested from Carthaginian control during the First Punic War, was the first province of the Roman Republic not directly part of Italy; the Kingdom of Syracuse was an allied independent region in the south east of the island and a close ally of Rome during the long reign of King Hiero II. In 215 BC, Hiero's grandson, came to the throne on his grandfather's death and Syracuse fell under the influence of an anti-Roman faction, including two of his uncles, amongst the Syracusan elite.
Despite the assassination of Hieronymus and the removal of the pro-Carthaginian leaders, Rome's threatening reaction to the danger of a Syracusian alliance with Carthage would force the new republican leaders of Syracuse to prepare for war. Despite diplomatic attempts, war broke out between the Roman Republic and the Kingdom of Syracuse in 214 BC, while the Romans were still busy battling with Carthage at the height of the Second Punic War. A Roman force led by the proconsul Marcus Claudius Marcellus laid siege to the port city by sea and land in 213 BC; the city of Syracuse, located on the eastern coast of Sicily was renowned for its significant fortifications, great walls that protected the city from attack. Among the Syracuse defenders was the scientist Archimedes; the city was fiercely defended for many months against all the measures the Romans could bring to bear. Realizing how difficult the siege would be, the Romans brought their own unique devices and inventions to aid their assault.
These included the sambuca, a floating siege tower with grappling hooks, as well as ship-mounted scaling ladders that were lowered with pulleys onto the city walls. Despite these novel inventions, Archimedes devised defensive devices to counter the Roman efforts including a huge crane operated hook – the Claw of Archimedes –, used to lift the enemy ships out of the sea before dropping them to their doom. Legend has it that he created a giant mirror, used to deflect the powerful Mediterranean sun onto the ships' sails, setting fire to them; these measures, along with the fire from ballistas and onagers mounted on the city walls, frustrated the Romans and forced them to attempt costly direct assaults. The siege bogged down to a stalemate with the Romans unable to force their way into the city or keep their blockade tight enough to stop supplies reaching the defenders, the Syracusians unable to force the Romans to withdraw; the Carthaginians realised the potential hindrance a continuing Syracusian defense could cause to the Roman war effort and attempted to relieve the city from the besiegers but were driven back.
Though they planned another attempt, they could not afford the necessary troops and ships with the ongoing war against the Romans in Hispania, the Syracusians were on their own. The successes of the Syracusians in repelling the Roman siege had made them overconfident. In 212 BC, the Romans received information that the city's inhabitants were to participate in the annual festival to their goddess Artemis. A small party of Roman soldiers approached the city under the cover of night and managed to scale the walls to get into the outer city and with reinforcements soon took control, but the main fortress remained firm. Marcus Claudius Marcellus had ordered that Archimedes, the well-known mathematician – and equally well-known to Marcellus as the inventor of the mechanical devices that had so dominated the siege – should not be killed. Archimedes, now around 78 years of age, continued his studies after the breach by the Romans and while at home, his work was disturbed by a Roman soldier. Archimedes coarsely told the soldier to leave.
The Romans now controlled the outer city but the remainder of the population of Syracuse had fallen back to the fortified inner citadel, offering continued resistance. The Romans now put siege to the citadel and were successful in cutting off supplies to this reduced area. After a lengthy eight-month siege which brought great hardship onto the defenders through hunger, with parleys in progress, an Iberian captain named Moeriscus, one of the three prefects of Achradina, decided to save his own life by letting the Romans in near the Fountains of Arethusa. On the agreed signal, during a diversionary attack, he opened the gate. After setting guards on the houses of the pro-Roman faction, Marcellus gave Syracuse to plunder. Frustrated and angered after the lengthy and costly siege, the Romans rampaged through the citadel and slaughtered many of the Syracusians where they stood and enslaved most of the rest; the city was thoroughly looted and sacked. The city of Syracuse was now under the influence of Rome again, which united the whole of Sicily as a Roman province.
The taking of Syracuse ensured that the Carthaginians could not get a foothold in Sicily, which could have led to them giving support to Hannibal's Italian campaign, this allowed the Romans to concentrate on waging the war in Spain and Italy. The island was used as a vital gathering point for the final victorious ca
The Nuragic civilization known as the Nuragic culture was a civilization or culture on the island of Sardinia, the second largest island in the Mediterranean Sea, which lasted from the 18th century BCE to 238 BCE when the Romans colonized the island. Others date the culture as lasting at least until the 2nd century CE or even to the 6th century CE; the adjective "Nuragic" derives from the island's most characteristic monument, the nuraghe, a tower-fortress type of construction the ancient Sardinians built in large numbers starting from about 1800 BCE. Today more than 7,000 nuraghes dot the Sardinian landscape. No written records of this civilization have been discovered, apart from a few possible short epigraphic documents belonging to the last stages of the Nuragic civilization; the only written information there comes from classical literature of the Greeks and Romans, may be considered more mythological than historical. In the Stone Age the island was first inhabited by people who had arrived there in the Paleolithic and Neolithic ages from Europe and the Mediterranean area.
The most ancient settlements have been discovered both in northern Sardinia. Several cultures developed on the island, such as the Ozieri culture; the economy was based on agriculture, animal husbandry and trading with the mainland. With the diffusion of metallurgy and copper objects and weapons appeared on the island. Remains from this period include hundreds of menhirs and dolmens, more than 2,400 hypogeum tombs called domus de Janas, the statue menhirs, representing warriors or female figures, the stepped pyramid of Monte d'Accoddi, near Sassari, which show some similarities with the monumental complex of Los Millares and the talaiots in the Balearic Islands. According to some scholars, the similarity between this structure and those found in Mesopotamia are due to cultural influxes coming from the Eastern Mediterranean; the altar of Monte d'Accoddi fell out of use starting from c. 2000 BCE, when the Beaker culture, which at the time was widespread in all western Europe, appeared on the island.
The beakers arrived in Sardinia from two different regions: firstly from Spain and southern France, secondly from Central Europe, through the Italian Peninsula. The Bonnanaro culture was the last evolution of the Beaker culture in Sardinia, displayed several similarities with the contemporary Polada culture of northern Italy; these two cultures shared common features in the material culture such as undecorated pottery with axe-shaped handles. These influences may have spread to Sardinia via Corsica, where they absorbed new architectural techniques that were widespread on the island. New peoples coming from the mainland arrived on the island at that time, bringing with them new religious philosophies, new technologies and new ways of life, making obsolete the previous ones or reinterpreting them, it is in virtue of stimuli and models from the Central European and Polada-Rhone areas, that the culture of Bonnanaro I gives a jolt to the known and produces in step with the times. From the severe, practical character and essentiality of the material equipment, we understand the nature and the warlike habit of the newcomers and the conflictual thrust that they give to life on the island.
This is confirmed by the presence of metal weapons. The metal spreads in objects of use, ornamental objects It seems to feel a fall of ideologies of the old pre-nuragic world corresponding to a new historical turning point The widespread diffusion of bronze brought numerous improvements. With the new alloy of copper and tin, or arsenic, a harder and more resistant metal was obtained, suitable for manufacturing tools used in agriculture and warfare. From this period dates the construction of the so-called proto-nuraghe, a platformlike structure that marks the first phase of the Nuragic Age; these buildings are different from the classical nuraghe having an irregular planimetry and a stocky appearance. Dating to the middle of the 2nd millennium BCE, the nuraghe, which evolved from the previous proto-nuraghe, are megalithic towers with a truncated cone shape, they are widespread in the whole of Sardinia, about one nuraghe every three square kilometers. Early Greek historians and geographers speculated about their builders.
They described the presence of fabulous edifices, called daidaleia, from the name of Daedalus, after building his labyrinth in Crete, would have moved to Sicily and to Sardinia. Modern theories about their use have included social, religious, or astronomical roles, as furnaces, or as tombs. Although the question has long been contentious among scholars, the modern consensus is that they were built as defensible homesites, that included barns and silos. In the second half of the 2nd millennium BCE, archaeological studies have proved the increasing size of the settlements built around some of these structures, which were located at the summit of hills. For protection reasons, new towers were added to the original ones, connected by walls provided with slits forming a complex nuraghe. Among the most famous of the numerous existing nuraghe, are the Su Nuraxi at Barumini, Santu Antine at Torralba, Nuraghe Losa at Abbasanta, Nuraghe Palmavera at Alghero, Nuraghe Genna Maria at Villanovaforru, Nuraghe
Hampsicora was a Sardo-Punic political leader and landowner of Sardinia, the leader of the major anti-Roman revolt in the province of 215 BC. The sources describe Hampsicora as the richest among the landowners of Sardinia, which at that time appeared to be split into two entities: the Carthaginian-dominated Southern and Western agricultural coastline, including the vast Campidano plain, the more inland areas that maintained their independence and, while being tolerant of the Carthaginians after many skirmishes, were nonetheless hostile to the Roman conquest. Since the late Nuragic era, the Sardinians and Carthaginians had been on good terms with each other, finding a common ground on their resentment against the Romans. In conjunction with Hannibal's victories in Italy, Hampsicora led, along with Hanno of Tharros, the revolts of the Sardinian coastal cities against the Romans in 215 BC, succeeding in gaining the support of the Nuragic Sardinians the Ilienses tribes; the senators of Cornus, the city of which Hampsicora was the chief magistrate, sent ambassadors to Carthage asking aid for the Sardinians who were aware of what was happening in Sardinia and the Italian peninsula.
Carthage sent Hasdrubal the Bald, with an army of about ten thousand soldiers. Meanwhile, Titus Manlius Torquatus, the Roman consul, gathered four legions in Caralis and went to Cornus. Manlius surprised the few troops of Cornus, led by Hiostus, son of Hampsicora, defeated, having made the mistake of facing the enemy in the open field without waiting for further reinforcements. In fact Hampsicora was asking for reinforcements for the Sardinians. Shortly after Hasdrubal the Bald arrived at Tharros with his army; when Manlius heard about the arrival of the Carthaginians, he preferred to withdraw to Caralis, while Hasdrubal mingled with Hampsicora. Hampsicora's plan was to march on Calaris in order to cut off the supply routes of the other cities of the western coast that had fallen into Roman hands; the pitched battle between the two armies took place near Decimomannu, according to Francesco Cesare Casula, between the two rivers in the area, a few miles north of Caralis and saw the defeat of the rebels and the death of Hiostus.
Hampsicora fled to safety. However, according to Livy, saddened by the death of his son Hiostus and eager not to fall into Roman hands, took his own life; the name of Hampsicora is thought to have Berber origin. There are some ancient toponyms related to the name of Hampsicora in contemporary Algeria and Tunisia, like the river Ampsaga, bordering with the Numidian Massylii in the vicinity of Cirta. However, some linguists have questioned such connection, linking the origin of the personal name to the ancient Aegeo-Anatolian region. Nuragic civilization Ancient Carthage Sardinia and Corsica Piero Meloni, La Sardegna romana, Sassari, 1975. Attilio Mastino, Storia della Sardegna antica, Il maestrale, Nuoro, 2005. Maurizio Corona, La rivolta di Ampsicora: cronaca della prima grande insurrezione sarda, Cagliari, 2005. Massimo Pittau, L'eroe Hampsicora era sardo, non cartaginese, available at the website of the author, former professor of Sardinian linguistics at the University of Sassari. Frantziscu Casula - Amos Cardia, Alfa Editrice, Quartu, 2007.
Francesco Casula, Uomini e donne di Sardegna, pp.9-30, Alfa editrice, Quartu 2010. Francesco Cesare Casula. La storia di Sardegna. Sassari: Delfino Editore. ISBN 88-7138-063-0. Tonino Oppes, Ampsicora Eroe sardo, Cagliari 2014
Hannibal's crossing of the Alps
Hannibal's crossing of the Alps in 218 BC was one of the major events of the Second Punic War, one of the most celebrated achievements of any military force in ancient warfare. Bypassing Roman and allied land garrisons and Roman naval dominance, Hannibal managed to lead his Carthaginian army over the Alps and into Italy to take the war directly to the Roman Republic. After the final Carthaginian naval defeat at the Aegates Islands, the Carthaginians surrendered and accepted defeat in the First Punic War. Hamilcar Barca, a leading member of the patriotic Barcine party in Carthage and a general who operated with ability in the course of the First Punic War, sought to remedy the losses that Carthage had suffered in Sicily to the Romans. In addition to this, the Carthaginians were embittered by the loss of Sardinia. After the Carthaginians' loss of the war, the Romans imposed terms upon them that were designed to reduce Carthage to a tribute-paying city to Rome and strip it of its fleet. While the terms of the peace treaty were harsh, the Romans did not strip Carthage of her strength.
The Carthaginian Barcine party was interested in conquering Iberia, a land whose variety of natural resources would fill its coffers with sorely needed revenue and replace the riches of Sicily that, following the end of the First Punic War, were now flowing into Roman coffers. In addition, it was the ambition of the Barcas, one of the leading noble families of the patriotic party, to some day employ the Iberian peninsula as a base of operations for waging a war of revenge against the Roman military alliance; those two things went hand in hand, in spite of conservative opposition to his expedition, Hamilcar set out in 238 BC to begin his conquest of the Iberian peninsula with these objectives in mind. Marching west from Carthage towards the Pillars of Hercules, where his army crossed the strait and proceeded to subdue the peninsula, in the course of nine years Hamilcar conquered the south-eastern portion of the peninsula, his administration of the freshly conquered provinces led Cato the Elder to remark that "there was no king equal to Hamilcar Barca."In 228 BC, Hamilcar was killed, witnessed by Hannibal, during a campaign against the Celtic natives of the peninsula.
The commanding naval officer, both Hamilcar's son in law and a member of the Patriotic party – Hasdrubal "The Handsome" – was awarded the chief command by the officers of the Carthaginian Iberian army. There were a number of Grecian colonies along the eastern coast of the Iberian peninsula, the most notable being the trade emporium of Saguntum; these colonies expressed concern about the consolidation of Carthaginian power on the peninsula, which Hasdrubal's deft military leadership and diplomatic skill procured. For protection, Saguntum turned to Rome; the conclusion of the treaty and the embassy were sent to Hasdrubal's camp in 226 BC. In 221 BC, Hasdrubal was killed by an assassin, it was in that year that the officers of the Carthaginian army in Iberia expressed their high opinion of Hamilcar's 29-year-old son, Hannibal, by electing him to the chief command of the army. Having assumed the command of the army that his father had wielded through nine years of hard mountain fighting, Hannibal declared that he was going to finish his father's project of conquering the Iberian peninsula, the first objective in his father's plan to bring a war to Rome in Italy and defeat it there.
Hannibal spent the first two years of his command seeking to complete his father's ambition while putting down several potential revolts that resulted in part from the death of Hasdrubal, which menaced the Carthaginian possessions conquered thus far. He attacked the tribe captured their chief town of Althaea. A number of the neighbouring tribes were astonished at the vigour and rapacity of this attack, as a result of which they submitted to the Carthaginians, he received tribute from all of these subjugated tribes, marched his army back to Cartagena, where he rewarded his troops with gifts and promised more gifts in the future. During the next two years, Hannibal reduced all of Iberia south of the Ebro to subjection, excepting the city of Saguntum, under the aegis of Rome, was outside of his immediate plans. Catalonia and Saguntum were now the only areas of the peninsula not in Hannibal's possession. Hannibal was informed of Roman politics, saw that this was the opportune time to attack, he had Gallic spies in every corner of the Roman Republic within the inner circles of the Senate itself.
The Romans had spent the years since the end of the First Punic War tightening their grip on the peninsula by taking important geographical positions in the peninsula in addition to extending Rome's grip on Sicily and Sardinia. In addition to this, the Romans had been at war with the Padane Gauls off and on for more than a century; the Boii had waged war upon the Romans in 238 BC, a war that lasted until 236 BC. In 225 BC, the natives of northern Italy, seeing that Rome was again moving aggressively to colonize their territory, progressed to the attack, but were defeated; the Romans were determined to drive their borders right up to the Alps. In 224 BC, the Boii submitted to Roman hegemony, the next y
Battle of Lilybaeum
The Battle of Lilybaeum was the first naval clash between the navies of Carthage and Rome during the Second Punic War. The Carthaginians had sent 35 quinqueremes to raid Sicily, starting with Lilybaeum; the Romans, warned by Hiero of Syracuse of the coming raid, had time to intercept the Carthaginian contingent with a fleet of 20 quinqueremes and managed to capture several Carthaginian ships. Carthage and the Roman Republic had peaceful, if not friendly, relations since signing the first treaty in 509 BC, which had detailed the rights of each power. Treaties were signed in 348 and 306 BC that further established the spheres of influence of each state. Carthage and Rome cooperated against King Pyrrhus and signed a treaty of cooperation in 279 BC. However, Roman involvement in Messina in Sicily in 264 BC led to the First Punic War, which cost Carthage her Sicilian holdings, naval supremacy and a large indemnity; the Roman actions during the Mercenary War favoured Carthage, but they seized Sardinia and Corsica after that war concluded.
Carthage rebuilt her fortunes by conquering parts of Iberia under the leadership of Hamilcar and Hannibal during 237-218 BC. Rome, at the instigation of Massalia, signed a treaty with Hasdrubal the Fair in 226 BC, which established the Ebro as the limit of Carthaginian power in Iberia; the city of Saguntum, located south of the river, became an ally of Rome some time after 226 BC. When Iberian allies of Hannibal Barca came into conflict with Saguntum, Rome warned Hannibal not to intervene. Faced with the alternative of backing down and losing face, Hannibal opted to attack Saguntum; this was the start of the Second Punic War. The Roman Senate had declared war on Carthage after Hannibal Barca had attacked and taken the city of Saguntum in Iberia in 219 BC. Rome had declared Saguntum an ally but had done nothing to help the city during the eight-month-long siege. Once the siege was over, the combatants started to make ready for the coming struggle, to last 18 years; the Roman navy had been mobilized in 219 BC.
Publius Cornelius Scipio was to sail for Iberia escorted by 60 ships. However, Gauls of the Boii and Insubre tribes in northern Italy attacked the Roman colonies of Placentia and Cremona, causing the Romans to flee to Mutina, which the Gauls besieged. Praetor L. Manlius Vulso marched from Ariminium with two Roman legions, 600 Roman Horse, 10,000 allied infantry and 1,000 allied cavalry towards Cisalpine Gaul; this army was ambushed twice on the way. Although the siege of Mutina was raised, the army itself fell under a loose siege a few miles from Mutina; this event prompted the Roman Senate to send one of Scipio's legions and 5,000 allied troops to aid Vulso. Scipio had to raise troops to replace these and thus could not set out for Iberia until September 218 BC. Consul Tiberius Sempronius Longus received four legions and instructions to sail for Africa, escorted by 160 quinqueremes. Sempronius had set sail for Sicily. Hannibal had dismissed his army to winter quarters after the Siege of Saguntum.
In the summer of 218 BC, Hannibal stationed 15,000 soldiers and 21 elephants in Iberia under his brother Hasdrubal Barca, sent 20,000 soldiers in Africa with 4,000 garrisoning Carthage itself. The army that marched for Italy from Cartagena is supposed to have numbered 90,000 foot and 12,000 cavalry, 37 elephants. Hannibal divided his army into three columns before crossing the Ebro River, attacked the Iberian tribes of Ilergetes and Ausetani in Catalonia. In a two-month-long campaign, Hannibal subdued parts of Catalonia between the Ebro, the Pyrenees and the Sicoris river in a swift, if costly campaign; the Iberian contingent of the Punic navy, which numbered 50 quinqueremes and 5 triremes, remained in Iberian waters, having shadowed Hannibal's army for some way. Carthage mobilized at least 55 Quinqueremes for immediate raids on Italy; the Carthaginian navy struck the first blow of the war when a fleet of 20 quinqueremes, loaded with 1,000 soldiers, raided the Lipari Islands. Another group of eight ships attacked Vulcano island, but was blown off-course in a storm towards the Straits of Messina.
The Syracusan navy at Messina, managed to capture three of the ships, which surrendered without resistance. Learning from the captured crew that a Carthaginian fleet was to attack Lilybaeum, Hiero II, at Messina awaiting the arrival of Sempronius, warned the Roman praetor Marcus Amellius at Lilybaeum about the impending raid; the Carthaginian fleet was hampered by bad weather and had to wait before commencing their operation. Although the Romans only had 20 ships present at Lilybaeum, the praetor, after receiving the warning from Hiero, provisioned his ships for a long sail and put a proper contingent of Roman legionaries on board each ship before the Carthaginian fleet appeared, he posted lookouts along the coast to watch out for the Carthaginian ships, giving him early warning and minimizing the risk of surprise. The Carthaginians had broken their journey at the Aegates Islands, when they sailed for Lilybaeum on a moonlit night, they intended to make their approach coincide with the dawn.
The Roman lookouts spotted them well. As the Romans sallied forth, the Carthaginians lowered their sails for battle and moved to the open sea; the Carthaginians outnumbered the Romans, but their ships were undermanned and the Romans had the advantage of containing a larger number of soldiers aboard their ships
Battle of Lake Trasimene
The Battle of Lake Trasimene was a major battle in the Second Punic War. The Carthaginians under Hannibal defeated the Romans under the consul Gaius Flaminius. Hannibal's victory over the Roman army at Lake Trasimene remains, in terms of the number of men involved, the largest ambush in military history. In the prelude to the battle, Hannibal achieved the earliest known example of a strategic turning movement; the Romans alarmed and dismayed by Tiberius Sempronius Longus’ defeat at Trebia made plans to counter the new threat from the north. Sempronius returned to Rome and the Roman Senate resolved to elect new consuls the following year in 217 BC; the new consuls were Gaius Flaminius. The latter was under threat of recall from the Senate for leaving Rome without carrying out the proper rituals after being elected consul; the Senate commissioned Servilius to replace Publius Cornelius Scipio and take command of his army, while Flaminius was appointed to lead what remained of Sempronius’s army. Since both armies had been weakened by the defeat at Trebia, four new legions were raised.
These new forces, together with the remains of the former army, were divided between the two consuls. After the battles of Ticinus and Trebia, Flaminius' army turned south to prepare a defence near Rome itself. Hannibal followed, but marched faster and soon passed the Roman army. Flaminius was forced to increase the speed of his march in order to bring Hannibal to battle before reaching the city. Another force under Servilius was due to join Flaminius. Before this could happen, Hannibal lured Gaius Flaminius' force into a pitched battle, by devastating the area Flaminius had been sent to protect. Polybius wrote that Hannibal calculated that he could draw out Flaminius into battle and that "no sooner had he left the neighbourhood of Faesulae, advancing a short way beyond the Roman camp, made a raid upon the neighbouring country Flaminius became excited, enraged at the idea that he was despised by the enemy: and as the devastation of the country went on, he saw from the smoke that rose in every direction that the work of destruction was proceeding, he could not patiently endure the sight."
At the same time, Hannibal tried to sever the allegiance of Rome's allies, by proving that the Republic was powerless to protect them. Flaminius remained passively encamped at Arretium. Unable to goad Flaminius into battle, Hannibal marched boldly around his opponent's left flank and cut Flaminius off from Rome, providing the earliest record of a deliberate turning movement in military history. Military historian Theodore Ayrault Dodge describes the significance of this maneuver and its intended effects on the campaign: We are told nothing about it by the ancient authors, whose knowledge of war confined them to the description of battles, but it is apparent enough to us By this handsome march Hannibal cut Flaminius off from Rome... as he was apt to move by the flank past the Roman camp to taunt the Roman general. Here is shown...the clear conception of the enemy’s strategic flank, with all its advantages Nor by his maneuver had Hannibal recklessly cut himself loose from his base, though he was living on the country and independent of it, as it were.
A more perfect case of cutting the enemy from his communications can scarcely be conceived.... If he fought, it must be materially worse conditions than if his line was open. Still, Flaminius stubbornly kept his army in camp. Hannibal decided to march on Apulia, hoping that Flaminius might follow him to a battlefield of his own choosing. Flaminius, eager to exact revenge for the devastation of the countryside, facing increasing political criticism from Rome marched against Hannibal. Flaminius, like Sempronius, was impetuous and lacking in self-control, his advisors suggested that he send only a cavalry detachment to harass the Carthaginians and prevent them from laying waste to any more of the country, while reserving his main force until the other consul, arrived with his army. It proved impossible to argue with the rash Flaminius. Livy wrote that "Though every other person in the council advised safe rather than showy measures, urging that he should wait for his colleague, in order that joining their armies, they might carry on the war with united courage and counsels...
Flaminius, in a fury... gave out the signal for marching for battle." As Hannibal passed Lake Trasimene, he came to a place suitable for an ambush, hearing that Flaminius had broken camp and was pursuing him, made preparations for the impending battle. To the north was a series of forested hills where the Malpasso Road passed along the north side of Lake Trasimene. Along the hill-bordered skirts of the lake, Hannibal camped where he was in full view of anyone entering the northern defile, spent the night arranging his troops for battle. Below the camp, he placed his heavy infantry upon a slight elevation. Here, they had ample ground from which they could charge down upon the head of the Roman column on the left flank, when it should reach the position, his cavalry and Gallic infantry were concealed in the hills in the depth of the wooded valley from which the Romans would first enter, so that they could sally out and close the entrance, blocking the Roman route of retreat. He posted his light troops at intervals along the heights overlooking the plain, with orders to keep well hidden in the woods until signalled to attack.
The night before
The Sardinians, or the Sards, are the native people and ethnic group from which Sardinia, a western Mediterranean island and autonomous region of Italy, derives its name. The ethnic origin of the Sardinians is unclear: the ethnonym "Srd" belongs to the Pre-Indo-European linguistic substratum; the oldest written attestation of the ethnonym is on the Nora stone, where the word Šrdn bears witness to its original existence by the time the Phoenician merchants first arrived to the Sardinian shores. According to Timaeus, one of Plato's dialogues and its people as well, the "Sardonioi" or "Sardianoi", might have been named after "Sardò", a legendary Lydian woman from Sardis, in the region of western Anatolia; some other authors, like Pausanias and Sallust, reported instead that Sardinians traced their descent back to a mythical ancestor, a Libyan son of Hercules or Makeris revered as Sardus Pater Babai, who gave the island its name. It has been claimed that the ancient Nuragic Sards were associated with the Sherden, one of the Sea Peoples.
The ethnonym was romanised, with regard for the singular masculine and feminine form, as sardus and sarda. Sardinia was first colonized in a stable manner during the Upper Paleolithic and the Mesolithic by people from the Iberian and the Italian peninsula. During the Neolithic period and the Early Eneolithic, people from Italy and the Aegean area settled in Sardinia. In the Late Eneolithic-Early Bronze age the "Beaker folk" from Southern France, Northeastern Spain and from Central Europe settled on the island, bringing new metallurgical techniques and ceramic styles and some kind of Indo-European speech; the Nuragic civilization arose in the Middle Bronze Age, during the Late Bonnanaro culture, which showed connections with the previous Beaker culture and the Polada culture of northern Italy. At that time, the grand tribal identities of Nuragic Sardinia were said to be three: the Iolei/Ilienses, inhabiting the area from the southernmost plains to the mountainous zone of eastern Sardinia. Nuragic Sardinians have been connected by some scholars to the Sherden, a tribe of the so-called Sea Peoples, whose presence is registered several times in ancient Egyptian records.
The language spoken in Sardinia during the Bronze Age is unknown, since there are no written records of such period. According to Eduardo Blasco Ferrer, the Proto-Sardinian language was akin to Proto-Basque and the ancient Iberian, while others believe it was related to Etruscan. Other scholars theorize that there were various linguistic areas in Nuragic Sardinia Pre-Indoeuropeans and Indoeuropeans. In the 9th century BC, the Phoenicians founded cities and ports along the south-west coast, such as Karalis, Bithia and Tharros; the south and west part of Sardinia was annexed by the Carthaginians in the late 6th century BC and the whole island was conquered by the Romans in the 3rd century BC, after the First Punic War. Sardinia and Corsica were made into a single province. Sardinia, with the exception of the innerlands and the central mountainous area called Barbagia, was Latinized during the Roman period, the modern Sardinian language is considered one of the most conservative Romance languages.
Besides, during the Roman rule there was a considerable immigration flow from the Italian peninsula into the island. Roman colonies were established in Porto Torres and Usellus. Strabo gave a brief summary about the Mountaineer tribes, living in what would be called civitates Barbariae, who refused assimilation during Roman rule, Geographica V ch.2:There are four nations of mountaineers, the Parati, Sossinati and the Aconites. These people dwell in caverns. Although they have some arable land, they neglect its cultivation, preferring rather to plunder what they find cultivated by others, whether on the island or on the continent, where they make descents upon the Pisatæ; the prefects sent sometimes resist them, but at other times leave them alone, since it would cost too dear to maintain an army always on foot in an unhealthy place. After the fall of the Western Roman Empire, Sardinia was ruled in rapid succession by the Vandals, the Byzantines, the Ostrogoths and again by the Byzantines. During the Middle Ages, the island was divided into four independent Kingdoms.
The Doria founded the cities of Alghero and Castelgenovese, while the Pisans founded Castel di Castro and Terranova. Following the Aragonese conquest of the Sardinian territories belong