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The Punic Wars: 

The Punic Wars Rome Vs. Carthage


Causes 3rd Century BC, Rome and Carthage were both expanding their power in the Mediterra-nean

1st Punic War: 

1st Punic War Mostly a naval war Carthage had the superior navy Rome had little naval power (strength was her legions)

Technology and Invention: 

Technology and Invention Romans invented the Corvus (large wooden bridge with a spike) This turned naval battles into land battles (ie – Romans could attack with their Legions

214 BC Peace Treaty: 

214 BC Peace Treaty Heavy losses (men and $) by Carthage forced her to w/draw from Sicily and Italian islands Rome also sustained heavy losses (400,000 men-as many as US in WWII) but: Rome had more resources to draw from!

Second Punic War: 

Second Punic War Hannibal VS Rome


Hannibal The leading general of Carthage

Carthage Strengths and Weaknesses: 

Carthage Strengths and Weaknesses Strengths Leadership Superior Cavalry Surprise Able to coordinate actions of troops from many different cultures Weaknesses Brutal treatment of colonies Outnumbered significantly No naval power (as per treaty of 214) Had to fight on several fronts (Rome, Carthage, colonies…)

Rome Strengths and Weaknesses: 

Rome Strengths and Weaknesses Strengths Resources (manpower and supplies) were seemingly endless! Infantry was well-trained Naval superiority Weaknesses Generals were elected (politicians – not always best tacticians) Two generals served each army, every other day! Command was confused at times Cavalry was very weak and left flanks exposed

Hannibal’s Grand Strategy: 

Hannibal’s Grand Strategy Surprise the Romans by invading Italy Win early decisive battles destroying Roman legions (and shaking confidence in legions)

Hannibal’s Grand Strategy: 

Hannibal’s Grand Strategy There would be no supplies from home so: Gain support of Celtic people from the North to make-up for losses of men Forage for food in Italy Gain support of Rome’s Italian allies by: Destroying Roman armies and dispelling the myth of their superiority Treating Italian allies fairly to gain their support

Cannae 216 BC: 

Cannae 216 BC After winning several decisive battles throughout Italy, Hannibal slaughters 50,000 Roman troops at Cannae! He never invades the city of Rome Eventually he is called home to defend Carthage – loses to Scipio Africanus Hannibal loses second Punic War

Third Punic War: 

Third Punic War Rome decides to totally destroy Carthage Sacks the city, kills most of the men and sells the women and children into slavery Sows salt in the fields so nothing will grow there


Results Rome gains control of the Mediterranean world

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