My New Book, You Won’t Even Have My Bones, The Story of Publius Cornelius Scipio Africanus, Has Been Published.

My New Book, You Won’t Even Have My Bones: The Story of Publius Cornelius Scipio Africanus has been published. Although not frequently acknowledged as such, Scipio Africanus was one of the most pivotal characters in western history. If not for his accomplishments in conquering Spain and depriving Carthage of its wealthy province, and then going […]

Did Roman Soldier Ever Surrender to Hannibal?

There are no known instances of Roman legionaries surrendering to Hannibal before or during a battle. Roman survivors of the battle sometimes surrendered to Hannibal when the battle was over. In the case of the Battle of Trasimene, some 6000 Roman and allied cavalrymen broke out of Hannibal’s ambush and took refuge in an Etruscan […]

The Repeal of the Oppian Laws

The Oppian laws were passed during the Second Punic War at a time when Rome was badly in need of funds to carry on their war against Hannibal. They forbid women from owning more than a small amount of gold and jewelry and from riding in carriages and from wearing purple. This encouraged wealthy women […]

Would Carthage Have Destroyed Rome If They Had Been Victorious in the Punic Wars?

After the Battle of Cannae in which Hannibal’s army killed some 50,000 Roman and allied soldiers, Hannibal expected the Romans to sue for peace. He was not inclined to destroy the city. The Romans were having none of that. They would not allow Hannibal’s emissary into the city, and the Senate made it a crime […]

Were the Romans Religious?

The Romans were strongly religious. They worshiped a variety of Gods and believed that, at times, their gods interacted with humans. They never went into battle without first taking auguries to see if the battle would be favorable to them. They built temples everywhere, and rich Romans would sponsor a temple to whichever god he […]

Personal Encounters Between Hannibal and Scipio Africanus

Hannibal and Scipio Africanus were rival generals during the Second Punic War. Hannibal was the Carthaginian general who crossed the Alps to attack Rome, and Scipio was the Roman general who ended the sixteen-year-long war by defeating Hannibal at the Battle of Zama in North Africa. They are believed to have met in person only […]

Why the Carthaginian Senate Gave So Little Assistance to Hannibal.

Why didn’t the Carthaginians capitalize on Hannibal’s victories in Italy? Answered March 2, 2021 There were two reasons for this. First, the Carthaginians were divided about Hannibal’s activities and there was a faction in their Senate, led by Hanno the Great, who were not supportive of the war. They were clearly a minority after Cannae. After […]

How Good a General Was Scipio Africanus?

How good of a general was Scipio Africanus? Was he truly one of the greats, or did he simply benefit from the fame of defeating Hannibal at Zama?  Robin Levin Scipio Africanus was definitely one of the greatest generals in history. The Battle of Zama, where he defeated Hannibal wasn’t even his most brilliant accomplishment. […]

Quora Question: Who was Hannibal Barca and What Books Should I Read to Learn More About Him?

Who was Hannibal Barca? Which book should I read to learn more about him? Robin Levin · During the third and second centuries B.C. the ancient civilizations of Rome in Italy and Carthage in North Africa fought three wars, these are known as the Punic wars-the word Punic comes from the Roman word for Phoenician […]

Quora Question: What Year Was the Rise of Rome?

Rome didn’t rise in a day, nor in a year. The rise of Rome was a very long process. The Greek historian Polybius explored the rise of Rome in his Histories. In the preface he wrote: “For who is so indolent and so worthless as to not wish to know by what means and under […]