The Iberian Peninsula known as Iberia, is located in the southwest corner of Europe. The peninsula is principally divided between Portugal, comprising most of their territory, it includes Andorra, small areas of France, the British overseas territory of Gibraltar. With an area of 596,740 square kilometres ), it is both the second largest European peninsula by area, after the Scandinavian Peninsula, by population, after the Balkan Peninsula; the word Iberia is a noun adapted from the Latin word "Hiberia" originated by the Ancient Greek word Ἰβηρία by Greek geographers under the rule of the Roman Empire to refer to what is known today in English as the Iberian Peninsula. At that time, the name did not describe a single political entity or a distinct population of people. Strabo's'Iberia' was delineated from Keltikē by the Pyrenees and included the entire land mass southwest of there. With the fall of the Roman Empire and the establishment of the new Castillian language in Spain, the word "Iberia" appeared for the first time in use as a direct'descendant' of the Greek word "Ἰβηρία" and the Roman word "Hiberia".
The ancient Greeks reached the Iberian Peninsula, of which they had heard from the Phoenicians, by voyaging westward on the Mediterranean. Hecataeus of Miletus was the first known to use the term Iberia, which he wrote about circa 500 BC. Herodotus of Halicarnassus says of the Phocaeans that "it was they who made the Greeks acquainted with... Iberia." According to Strabo, prior historians used Iberia to mean the country "this side of the Ἶβηρος" as far north as the river Rhône in France, but they set the Pyrenees as the limit. Polybius respects that limit, but identifies Iberia as the Mediterranean side as far south as Gibraltar, with the Atlantic side having no name. Elsewhere he says that Saguntum is "on the seaward foot of the range of hills connecting Iberia and Celtiberia." Strabo refers to the Carretanians as people "of the Iberian stock" living in the Pyrenees, who are distinct from either Celts or Celtiberians. According to Charles Ebel, the ancient sources in both Latin and Greek use Hispania and Hiberia as synonyms.
The confusion of the words was because of an overlapping in geographic perspectives. The Latin word Hiberia, similar to the Greek Iberia translates to "land of the Hiberians"; this word was derived from the river Ebro. Hiber was thus used as a term for peoples living near the river Ebro; the first mention in Roman literature was by the annalist poet Ennius in 200 BC. Virgil refers to the Ipacatos Hiberos in his Georgics; the Roman geographers and other prose writers from the time of the late Roman Republic called the entire peninsula Hispania. As they became politically interested in the former Carthaginian territories, the Romans began to use the names Hispania Citerior and Hispania Ulterior for'near' and'far' Hispania. At the time Hispania was made up of three Roman provinces: Hispania Baetica, Hispania Tarraconensis, Hispania Lusitania. Strabo says that the Romans use Hispania and Iberia synonymously, distinguishing between the near northern and the far southern provinces. Whatever language may have been spoken on the peninsula soon gave way to Latin, except for that of the Vascones, preserved as a language isolate by the barrier of the Pyrenees.
The Iberian Peninsula has always been associated with the Ebro, Ibēros in ancient Greek and Ibērus or Hibērus in Latin. The association was so well known. Pliny goes so far as to assert that the Greeks had called "the whole of Spain" Hiberia because of the Hiberus River; the river appears in the Ebro Treaty of 226 BC between Rome and Carthage, setting the limit of Carthaginian interest at the Ebro. The fullest description of the treaty, stated in Appian, uses Ibērus. With reference to this border, Polybius states that the "native name" is Ibēr the original word, stripped of its Greek or Latin -os or -us termination; the early range of these natives, which geographers and historians place from today's southern Spain to today's southern France along the Mediterranean coast, is marked by instances of a readable script expressing a yet unknown language, dubbed "Iberian." Whether this was the native name or was given to them by the Greeks for their residence on the Ebro remains unknown. Credence in Polybius imposes certain limitations on etymologizing: if the language remains unknown, the meanings of the words, including Iber, must remain unknown.
In modern Basque, the word ibar means "valley" or "watered meadow", while ibai means "river", but there is no proof relating the etymology of the Ebro River with these Basque names. The Iberian Peninsula has been inhabited for at least 1.2 million years as remains found in the sites in the Atapuerca Mountains demonstrate. Among these sites is the cave of Gran Dolina, where six hominin skeletons, dated between 780,000 and one million years ago, were found in 1994. Experts have debated whether these skeletons belong to the species Homo erectus, Homo heidelbergensis, or a new species called Homo antecessor. Around 200,000 BP, during the Lower Paleolithic period, Neanderthals first entered the Iberian Peninsula. Around 70,000 BP, during the Middle Paleolithic period, the last glacial event began and the Neanderthal Mousterian culture was established. Around 37,000 BP, during the Upper Paleolithic, the Neanderthal Châtelperronian cultural period began. Emanating from Southern France, this culture extended into the north of the p
Hasdrubal Barca, a latinization of ʿAzrubaʿal son of Hamilcar Barca, was a Carthaginian general in the Second Punic War. He was the brother of Mago Barca. Little is known of Hasdrubal's early life, he was present, along with his brother Hannibal, when his father, besieged the city of Helike. Hamilcar was drowned in the Jucar River. Little is known about his activities during the time Hasdrubal the Fair led the Punic forces in Spain, or during the campaigns of Hannibal Barca in Spain and his Siege of Saguntum. Hannibal, when he set out for Italy in 218 BC, left a force of 13,000 infantry, 2,550 cavalry and 21 war elephants in Iberia; the Punic navy had a fleet of 5 triremes stationed there. However, only 32 Quinqueremes were manned at the start of the Second Punic War. Hasdrubal was to set out for Italy in 217 BC to reinforce Hannibal. Hannibal left another army under Hanno in Catalonia, consisting of 10,000 foot and 1,000 horse on his way to Italy in 218 BC. Left in command of Hispania when Hannibal departed to Italy in 218 BC, Hasdrubal was destined to fight for six years against the brothers Gnaeus and Publius Cornelius Scipio.
The expedition led by Gnaeus Scipio in 218 BC had caught the Carthaginians by surprise, before Hasdrubal could join Hanno, the Carthaginian commander on the North of Ebro River, the Romans had fought and won the Battle of Cissa and established their army at Tarraco and their fleet at Emporiae. Hasdrubal, commanding only 8,000 troops and outnumbered by the Romans, raided the Romans with a flying column of light infantry and cavalry, which inflicted severe losses on their naval crews and reduced the fighting strength to 35 ships; this loss was offset by the arrival of an allied Greek contingent from the city of Massilia. In the spring of 217 BC, Hasdrubal led a joint expedition north to fight the Romans, he commanded the army. The Punic Army and the fleet encamped on the mouth of the Ebro River. Carelessness of the Carthaginian fleet enabled Gnaeus Scipio to surprise the Carthaginians and crush their naval contingent at the Battle of Ebro River. Hasdrubal retreated without fighting the Roman army.
The year 216 was spent quelling an uprising of Iberian tribes the Turdetanii around the area near Gades. Hasdrubal was reinforced by 4,000 infantry and 500 cavalry and was ordered by the Carthaginian senate to march to Italy in the same year, he left Himilco the Navigator in charge at Cartagena and marched for the Ebro river, but was defeated in the Battle of Dertosa in the spring of 215 BC. This defeat prevented reinforcements reaching Hannibal from both Iberia and Africa at a critical moment of the War, when the Carthaginians held the upper hand in Italy; the Carthaginians from on were forced to contest the Romans in the area between the Ebro and Jucor rivers. This defeat led to Mago and Hasdrubal Gisco arriving in Iberia with two armies and ending the undisputed command of the Barcid family in Iberia; the Carthaginains fought the Scipio brothers and had on the whole the worst of the conflict between 215 and 212 BC, but managed to prevent the loss of any territory. At the instigation of the Romans, one of the kings of the Numidian tribes, attacked Carthaginian territories in Africa in 213/212 BC.
The situation in Iberia was sufficiently under control, because Hasdrubal and his Iberian army crossed over to Africa and crushed the threat of Syphax in a battle where 30,000 Numidians were killed. With his Roman-trained army shattered, Syphax fled to Mauritania; the aid of Masinissa, a Numidian prince, was invaluable during this episode, he crossed over to Iberia with Hasdrubal after the African expedition ended with 3,000 Numidian cavalry. In late 212 BC, with timely cooperation from Mago Barca and Hasdrubal Gisco routed his opponents at the Battle of the Upper Baetis, destroying the majority of the Roman army in Iberia and killing both the Scipios. Carthaginians gained control of Iberia up to the Ebro as a result of this victory. However, the lack of cooperation between the Carthaginian generals led to the surviving Roman force of 8,000 retiring safely to the north of the river Ebro; these troops somehow managed to keep the Carthaginian armies from gaining a foothold north of the Ebro. The Romans reinforced this detachment with 10,000 troops under Claudius Nero in 211 BC and with another 10,000 soldiers under Scipio Africanus Major in 210 BC, who spent the year training his army and improving his diplomatic contacts.
The Carthaginian armies had dispersed into the interior of Iberia in 209 BC to maintain control over the Iberian tribes, which they were dependent on for soldiers and provisions. The Carthaginian armies were subsequently outgeneraled by Scipio Africanus Major, taking advantage of the absence of the three Carthaginian armies in 209 BC, captured Carthago Nova and gained other advantages. Hasdrubal was defeated by Scipio at the Battle of Baecula but managed to retreat with two-thirds of his army intact. In 209 BC, Hasdrubal was summoned to join his brother in Italy, he eluded Scipio by crossing the Pyrenees at their western extremity and safely made his way into Gaul in the winter of 208. Hasdrubal had waited until the spring of 207 to make his way through the Alps and into Northern Italy. Hasdrubal made much faster progress than his brother had due to the construction left behind by Hannibal's army when he had passed via the same route a decade earlier, but due to the removal of the Gallic threat that had plagued Hannibal early on.
The Gauls now feared and respected the Carthaginians, not only was Hasdrubal allowed to pass through the Alps unmolested, his ranks were
The Celtiberians were a group of Celts or Celticized peoples inhabiting the central-eastern Iberian Peninsula during the final centuries BC. They were explicitly mentioned as being Celts by several classic authors; these tribes wrote it by adapting the Iberian alphabet. The numerous inscriptions that have been discovered, some of them extensive, have allowed scholars to classify the Celtiberian language as a Celtic language, one of the Hispano-Celtic languages that were spoken in pre-Roman and early Roman Iberia. Archaeologically, many elements link Celtiberians with Celts in Central Europe, but show large differences with both the Hallstatt culture and La Tène culture. There is no complete agreement on the exact definition of Celtiberians among classical authors, nor modern scholars; the Ebro river divides the Celtiberian areas from non-Indo-European speaking peoples. In other directions, the demarcation is less clear. Most scholars include the Arevaci, Belli and Lusones as Celtiberian tribes, the Berones, Carpetani, Olcades or Lobetani.
The term Celtiberi appears in accounts by Diodorus Siculus and Martial who recognized intermarriage between Celts and Iberians after a period of continuous warfare, though Barry Cunliffe says "this has the ring of guesswork about it." Strabo just saw the Celtiberians as a branch of the Celti. Pliny the Elder thought that the original home of the Celts in Iberia was the territory of the Celtici in the south-west, on the grounds of an identity of sacred rites and the names of cities. Strabo cites Ephorus's belief that there were Celts in the Iberian peninsula as far as Cadiz, bringing aspects of Hallstatt culture in the 6th to 5th centuries BC, adopting much of the culture they found; this was a culture of seasonally transhumant cattle-raising pastoralists protected by a warrior elite, similar to those in other areas of Atlantic Europe, centered in the hill-forts, locally termed castros, that controlled small grazing territories. Settlements of circular huts survived until Roman times across the north of Iberia, from Northern Portugal and Galicia through Cantabria and northern Leon to the Ebro River.
Celtic presence in Iberia dates to as early as the 6th century BC, when the castros evinced a new permanence with stone walls and protective ditches. Archaeologists Martín Almagro Gorbea and Alvarado Lorrio recognize the distinguishing iron tools and extended family social structure of developed Celtiberian culture as evolving from the archaic castro culture which they consider "proto-Celtic". Archaeological finds identify the culture as continuous with the culture reported by Classical writers from the late 3rd century onwards; the ethnic map of Celtiberia was localized however, composed of different tribes and nations from the 3rd century centered upon fortified oppida and representing a wide-ranging degree of local assimilation with the autochthonous cultures in a mixed Celtic and Iberian stock. The cultural stronghold of Celtiberians was the northern area of the central meseta in the upper valleys of the Tagus and Douro east to the Iberus river, in the modern provinces of Soria, Guadalajara and Teruel.
There, when Greek and Roman geographers and historians encountered them, the established Celtiberians were controlled by a military aristocracy that had become a hereditary elite. The dominant tribe were the Arevaci, who dominated their neighbors from powerful strongholds at Okilis and who rallied the long Celtiberian resistance to Rome. Other Celtiberians were the Belli and Titti in the Jalón valley, the Lusones to the east. Excavations at the Celtiberian strongholds Kontebakom-Bel Botorrita, Sekaisa Segeda, Tiermes complement the grave goods found in Celtiberian cemeteries, where aristocratic tombs of the 6th to 5th centuries BC give way to warrior tombs with a tendency from the 3rd century BC for weapons to disappear from grave goods, either indicating an increased urgency for their distribution among living fighters or, as Almagro-Gorbea and Lorrio think, the increased urbanization of Celtiberian society. Many late Celtiberian oppida are still occupied by modern towns, inhibiting archaeology.
Metalwork stands out in Celtiberian archaeological finds from its indestructible nature, emphasizing Celtiberian articles of warlike uses, horse trappings and prestige weapons. The two-edged sword adopted by the Romans was in use among the Celtiberians, Latin lancea, a thrown spear, was a Hispanic word, according to Varro. Celtiberian culture was influenced by Rome in the two final centuries BC. From the 3rd century, the clan was superseded as the basic Celtiberian political unit by the oppidum, a fortified organized city with a defined territory that included the castros as subsidiary settlements; these civitates as the Roman historians called them, could make and break alliances, as surviving inscribed hospitality pacts attest, minted coinage. The old clan structures lasted in the formation of the Celtiberian armies, organized along clan-structure lines, with consequent losses of strategic and tactical control; the Celtiberians were the most influential ethnic group in Iberia when the Mediterranean powers started its conquest.
In 220 BC, the Punic army was attacked when preparing to cross the Tagus river by a coalition of Vaccei and Olcades. Despite these clashes, during the Second Punic War the Celtiberians served most as allies or mercenaries of Carthage in its conflict with Rome, crossed the Alps in the mixed forces under Hannibal's command. Under Scipio, the Romans were able to secure alliances and change the allegiances of many Celtiberia
Publius Cornelius Scipio
Publius Cornelius Scipio was a general and statesman of the Roman Republic and the father of Scipio Africanus. A member of the Cornelia gens, Scipio served as consul in 218 BC, the first year of the Second Punic War, he sailed with his army from Pisa with the intention of confronting Hannibal in Hispania. Stopping at Massalia to replenish his supplies, he was shocked to discover that Hannibal's army had moved from Hispania and was crossing the Rhône. Scipio marched to confront Hannibal, who, by now, had moved on. Returning to the fleet, he entrusted the command of his army to his brother Gnaeus Cornelius Scipio Calvus and sent him off to Hispania to carry on with the intended mission. Scipio returned to Italy to take command of the troops fighting in Cisalpine Gaul. On his return to Italy, he advanced at once to meet Hannibal. In a sharp cavalry engagement near the Ticinus, a tributary of the Po river, he was defeated and wounded. In December of the same year, he again witnessed the complete defeat of the Roman army at the Trebia, when his fellow consul Tiberius Sempronius Longus insisted on fighting against his advice.
Despite the military defeats, he still retained the confidence of the Roman people. He continued the Iberian campaigns until 211, when he was killed during the defeat of his army at the upper Baetis river by the Carthaginians and their Iberian allies under Indibilis and Mandonius; that same year and his army were destroyed at Ilorci near Carthago Nova. The details of these campaigns are not known, but it seems that the ultimate defeat and death of the two Scipiones was due to the desertion of the Celtiberians, who were bribed by Hasdrubal Barca, Hannibal's brother; the son of Lucius Cornelius Scipio, he was the father of Publius Cornelius Scipio Africanus, of Lucius Cornelius Scipio Asiaticus. A Publius Cornelius Scipio, son of Scipio Africanus the elder and Aemilia Paulla, grandson of the consul of 218 BC, was the adoptive father of Scipio Aemilianus Africanus; this latter Scipio served as praetor in 174 BC. Scipio-Paullus-Gracchus family tree
Titus Livius – rendered as Livy in English – was a Roman historian. He wrote a monumental history of Rome and the Roman people – Ab Urbe Condita Libri – covering the period from the earliest legends of Rome before the traditional foundation in 753 BC through the reign of Augustus in Livy's own lifetime, he was on familiar terms with members of the Julio-Claudian dynasty and in friendship with Augustus, whose young grandnephew, the future emperor Claudius, he exhorted to take up the writing of history. Livy was born in Patavium in northern Italy, now modern Padua. There is a debate about the year of his birth- either in 64 BC, or more in 59 BC. At the time of his birth, his home city of Patavium was the second wealthiest on the Italian peninsula, the largest in the province of Cisalpine Gaul. Cisalpine Gaul was merged in Italia during his lifetime and its inhabitants were given Roman citizenship by Julius Caesar. In his works, Livy expressed his deep affection and pride for Patavium, the city was well known for its conservative values in morality and politics.
"He was by nature a recluse, mild in averse to violence. The governor of Cisalpine Gaul at the time, Asinius Pollio, tried to sway Patavium into supporting Marcus Antonius, the leader of one of the warring factions; the wealthy citizens of Patavium refused to contribute money and arms to Asinius Pollio, went into hiding. Pollio attempted to bribe the slaves of those wealthy citizens to expose the whereabouts of their masters, it is therefore that the Roman civil wars prevented Livy from pursuing a higher education in Rome or going on a tour of Greece, common for adolescent males of the nobility at the time. Many years Asinius Pollio derisively commented on Livy's "patavinity", saying that Livy's Latin showed certain "provincialisms" frowned on at Rome. Pollio's dig may have been the result of bad feelings he harboured toward the city of Patavium from his experiences there during the civil wars. Livy went to Rome in the 30s BC, it is that he spent a large amount of time in the city after this, although it may not have been his primary home.
During his time in Rome, he held a government position. His writings contain elementary mistakes on military matters, indicating that he never served in the Roman army. However, he was educated in rhetoric, it seems that Livy had the financial resources and means to live an independent life, though the origin of that wealth is unknown. He devoted a large part of his life to his writings, which he was able to do because of his financial freedom. Livy was known to give recitations to small audiences, but he was not heard of to engage in declamation a common pastime, he was familiar with the imperial family. Augustus was considered by Romans to have been the greatest Roman emperor, benefiting Livy's reputation long after his death. Suetonius described how Livy encouraged the future emperor Claudius, born in 10 BC, to write historiographical works during his childhood. Livy's most famous work was his history of Rome. In it he narrates a complete history of the city of Rome, from its foundation to the death of Augustus.
Because he was writing under the reign of Augustus, Livy's history emphasizes the great triumphs of Rome. He wrote his history with embellished accounts of Roman heroism in order to promote the new type of government implemented by Augustus when he became emperor. In Livy's preface to his history, he said that he did not care whether his personal fame remained in darkness, as long as his work helped to "preserve the memory of the deeds of the world’s preeminent nation"; because Livy was writing about events that had occurred hundreds of years earlier, the historical value of his work was questionable, although many Romans came to believe his account to be true. Livy had at least one daughter and one son, he produced other works, including an essay in the form of a letter to his son, numerous dialogues, most modelled on similar works by Cicero. Titus Livius died in his home city of Patavium in either AD 12 or 17. Livy's only surviving work is the "History of Rome", his career from his mid-life 32, until he left Rome for Padua in old age in the reign of Tiberius after the death of Augustus.
When he began this work he was past his youth. Seneca the Younger gives brief mention that he was known as an orator and philosopher and had written some treatises in those fields from a historical point of view. Livy's History of Rome was in high demand from the time it was published and remained so during the early years of the empire. Pliny the Younger reported that Livy's celebrity was so widespread, a man from Cadiz travelled to Rome and back for the sole purpose of meeting him. Livy's work was a source for the works of Aurelius Victor, Eutropius, Florus, Granius Licinianus and Orosius. Julius Obsequens used Livy, or a source with access to Livy, to compose his De Prodigiis, an account of supernatural e
A tribal chief is the leader of a tribal society or chiefdom. Tribal societies with social stratification under a single leader emerged in the Neolithic period out of earlier tribal structures with little stratification, they remained prevalent throughout the Iron Age. In the case of indigenous tribal societies existing within larger colonial and post-colonial states, tribal chiefs may represent their tribe or ethnicity in a form of self-government; the most common types are the chairman of a council and/or a broader popular assembly in "parliamentary" cultures, the war chief, the hereditary chief, the politically dominant medicineman. The term is distinct from chiefs at lower levels, such as village chief or clan chief; the descriptive "tribal" requires an ethno-cultural identity as well as some political expression. In certain situations, in a colonial context, the most powerful member of either a confederation or a federation of such tribal, clan or village chiefs would be referred to as a paramount chief.
This term has fallen out of use and such personages are now called kings. A woman who holds a chieftaincy in her own right or who derives one from her marriage to a male chief has been referred to alternatively as a chieftainess, a chieftess or in the case of the former, a chief. Anthropologist Elman Service distinguishes two stages of tribal societies: simple societies organized by limited instances of social rank and prestige, more stratified societies led by chieftains or tribal kings. Tribal societies represent an intermediate stage between the band society of the Paleolithic stage and civilization with centralized, super-regional government based in cities. Stratified tribal societies led by tribal kings thus flourished from the Neolithic stage into the Iron Age, albeit in competition with civilisations and empires beginning in the Bronze Age. An important source of information for tribal societies of the Iron Age is Greco-Roman ethnography, which describes tribal societies surrounding the urban, imperialist civilisation of the Hellenistic and Roman periods.
After the collapse of the Western Roman Empire, tribal kingdoms were again established over much of Europe in the wake of the Migration period. By the High Middle Ages, these had again coalesced into super-regional monarchies. Tribal societies remained prevalent in much of the New World. Exceptions to tribal societies outside of Europe and Asia were Paleolithic or Mesolithic band societies in Oceania and in parts of Sub-Saharan Africa. Europeans forced centralized governments onto these societies during colonialism, but in some instances tribes have retained or regained partial self-government. Lonco among the Mapuche Morubixaba — tribal Cacique of the Tupi people Oubutu Rajiv Tyee, a tribal chief of the Chinookan peoples in the Pacific Northwest of the present-day United States Cacique, a term used among the Taino Nation of the Caribbean islands adopted by the Spanish to refer to all heads of chiefdoms whom they encountered: Cuauhtémoc, Tecun Uman, Atlacatl, Nicarao, Tupac Amaru II Sachem, term of chiefdom of the Algonquian nations of present-day New England in the United States Afro Bolivian king Eze Gbong Gwon Jos Kgosi Mogho Naba Nkosi Oba and Oloye.
Obai Omanhene Orkoiyot Sarkin Obong Tor Tiv of the Tiv people of Central Nigeria Aliʻi and Aliʻi nui were the chiefs and high chiefs of the islands of Hawaii Islands Ariki,'ariki henua Grade-taking systems of northern Vanuatu Ibedul Meena means Chief of tribals in South Asia. Iroijlaplap Matai, in the Samoan fa'amatai system Nahnmwarki, Lepen Palikir Rangatira, a chief of Māori in New Zealand Ratu, Fijian Chief, Malay for Queen Datu and Filipino Chief Arabs, in particular peninsular Arabs and nomadic Bedouins, are organized in tribes, many of whom have official representatives in governments. Tribal chiefs are known as Sheikhs, though this term is sometimes applied as an honorific title to spiritual leaders of Sufism; the Afro-Bolivian people, a recognized ethnic constituency of Bolivia, are led by a king whose title is recognized by the Bolivian government. In Botswana, the reigning chiefs of the various tribes are empowered to serve as advisers to the government as members of the Ntlo ya Dikgosi, the national House of Chiefs.
In addition to this, they serve as the ex officio chairs of the tribal kgotlas, meetings of all of the members of the tribes, where political and social matters are discussed. The band is the fundamental unit of governance among the First Nations in Canada. Most bands have elected chiefs, either directly elected by all members of the band, or indirectly by the band council, these chiefs are recognized by the Canadian state under the terms of the Indian Act; as well, there may be traditional hereditary or charismatic chiefs, w
Battle of Cissa
The Battle of Cissa was part of the Second Punic War. It was fought in the fall near the Greek town of Tarraco in north-eastern Iberia. A Roman army under Gnaeus Cornelius Scipio Calvus defeated an outnumbered Carthaginian army under Hanno, thus gaining control of the territory north of the Ebro River that Hannibal had just subdued a few months prior in the summer of 218 BC; this was the first battle that the Romans had fought in Iberia. After the successful conclusion of the Siege of Saguntum, Hannibal Barca had rested his army. In the summer of 218 BC, he had started out for Italy with either 90,000 foot and 12,000 cavalry, or with 26,000 foot and 10,000 horse, he had spent the summer conquering the area north of the Ebro River. After subduing the Iberian tribes, but leaving the Greek cities unmolested, Hannibal crossed over into Gaul to continue his march to Italy, leaving a contingent to guard the newly conquered territories and sending 10,000 less reliable troops home; the Roman navy had been mobilized in 219 BC.
Consul Tiberius Sempronius Longus received 4 legions and instructions to sail for Africa with 160 quinqueremes. Publius Cornelius Scipio was to sail for Iberia escorted by 60 ships. However, the Gallic Boii and Insubre tribes in northern Italy had attacked Roman colonies, causing part of Scipio’s force to deploy there and fresh legions were raised to replace them, delaying his departure. While Hannibal was marching through Gaul, Scipio had landed with his army at the allied Greek city of Massilia, he sent a cavalry patrol north, up the eastern bank of the Rhone River, which clashed with a similar force of Numidian light cavalry and, after a hard fought skirmish, drove off the Carthaginians. Scipio marched north from his base. Arriving at the deserted Carthaginian camp, Scipio learned that Hannibal was three day's march away and decided to send his forces to Iberia under the command of his elder brother Gnaeus, consul in 221 BC, while he himself returned to Northern Italy to organize the defences against Hannibal.
Hasdrubal Barca, the younger brother of Hannibal, had 12,650 infantry, 2,550 cavalry and 21 elephants to guard the Carthaginian possessions south of the Ebro. Hannibal had left a certain Hanno with 10,000 infantry and 1,000 cavalry to garrison the newly conquered territory north of the Ebro; this Hanno has been identified by various authors as Hannibal’s nephew, a brother or no Barcid relation. Gnaeus Cornelius Scipio Calvus, with 20,000 infantry 2,200 cavalry and 60 quinqueremes, sailed from Massilia and landed at Emporiae in Iberia; the Greek cities of Emporiae and Tarraco welcomed the Romans, Gnaeus began to win over the Iberian tribes north of the Ebro. Hasdrubal Barca, after being warned of the Roman expedition, marched north with an army of 8,000 foot soldiers and 1,000 cavalry to join Hanno. Hanno had been surprised by the Roman arrival in Iberia. Seeing the grip of the Carthaginians on the newly conquered Iberian tribes loosening because of the activities of Scipio, he decided to offer battle.
Hanno attacked the Romans just north of Tarraco, near a place called Cissa or Kissa. There were no brilliant manoeuvres or ambushes, the armies faced off. Being outnumbered two to one, Hanno was defeated easily, losing 6,000 soldiers in battle. Furthermore, the Romans managed to capture the Carthaginian camp, along with 2,000 more soldiers and Hanno himself; the camp contained. The prisoners included Indibilis, an influential Iberian chieftain who would cause severe trouble for the Romans later; the Romans stormed the town of Cissa, though to the frustration of the Romans it did not contain any valuable booty. Gnaeus became master of Iberia north of the Ebro. Hasdrubal, arriving too late to aid Hanno and not being strong enough to attack the Romans, still crossed the river and sent a flying column of light cavalry and infantry on a raid; this force caught some Roman sailors foraging and inflicted such casualties that the effectiveness of the Roman fleet in Iberia was reduced from 60 to 35 ships.
The Roman fleet, raided the Carthaginian possessions in Iberia. Roman prestige was established in Iberia. After punishing the officers in charge of the naval contingent for their lax discipline and the Roman army wintered at Tarraco. Hasdrubal retired to Cartagena after garrisoning allied towns south of the Ebro. If Hanno somehow had won the battle, it might have been possible for Hannibal to get reinforcements from Barcid Iberia as early as 217 BC; this battle brought the same results for Scipio in Iberia as the Battle of Trebia would bring for Hannibal in Italy: securing a base of operation, winning over some of the native tribes as a source of provisions and recruits cutting off the overland communication of Hannibal from his base in Iberia. Unlike Hannibal, Scipio did not launch a major campaign on enemy territory south of the river. Nor would he cut loose from his base like Hannibal did in the near future. Scipio took time to consolidate his holdings, subjugate or befriend Iberian tribes and raid Carthaginian territory.
These activities laid the foundation for the future Roman operations in Iberia. Bagnall, Nigel; the Punic Wars. ISBN 0-312-34214-4. Cottrell, Leonard. Hannibal: Enemy of Rome. Da Capo Press. ISBN 0-306-80498-0. Lazenby, John Francis (197