The Carthaginians reveals the complex culture, society and achievements of a famous, yet misunderstood, ancient people. Beginning as Phoenician settlers in North Africa, the Carthaginians then broadened their civilization with influences from neighbouring North African peoples, Egypt, and the Greek world. Their own cultural influence in turn spread across the Western Mediterranean as they imposed dominance over Sardinia, western Sicily, and finally southern Spain.
As a stable republic Carthage earned respectful praise from Greek observers, notably Aristotle, and from many Romans – even Cato, otherwise notorious for insisting that ‘Carthage must be destroyed’. Carthage matched the great city-state of Syracuse in power and ambition, then clashed with Rome for mastery of the Mediterranean West. For a time, led by her greatest general Hannibal, she did become the leading power between the Atlantic and the Adriatic.
It was chiefly after her destruction in 146 BC that Carthage came to be depicted by Greeks and Romans as an alien civilization, harsh, gloomy and bloodstained. Demonising the victim eased the embarrassment of Rome’s aggression; Virgil in his Aeneid was one of the few to offer a more sensitive vision. Exploring both written and archaeological evidence, The Carthaginians reveals a complex, multicultural and innovative people whose achievements left an indelible impact on their Roman conquerors and on history.
1. The Phoenicians in the West 2. Carthage: Foundation and Growth 3. State and Government 4. The Carthaginian ‘Sea Empire’ 5. Traders and Landowners: Carthaginian Society 6. The Cityscape of Carthage 7. Religion and Cultural Life 8. Carthage in Africa 9. Carthage at War: Sicily 10. The First War with Rome, and After 11. The New Empire and Hannibal 12. Revival and Destruction 13. Carthage in History
This series stands as the first port of call for anyone who wants to know more about the historically important peoples of the ancient world and the early middle ages.
Reliable, up-to-date and with special attention paid to the peoples’ enduring legacy and influence, Peoples of the Ancient World will ensure the continuing prominence of these crucial figures in modern-day study and research.