- Aug 2016
They seem to have very disparate cultures, yet I've never heard of any sort of conflict, or even contact between the two powerful neighbors. What did they think of each other?
Indeed. Hannibal fled Carthage for the Near East in 195. In 196 Hannibal had held the office of Suffete and had used his position to combat corruption. His enemies had thus told their friends in Rome that he was pushing for a new war, and when Roman agents arrived he fled to Carthage's mother city of Tyre and then to the court of Antiochus III of the Seleucid Empire. There he served as an advisor and admiral during their war with Rome. After the Seleucids lost the war and he realised that the Romans were pressuring Antiochus to give him up, he fled to Prusias of Bithynia. There he served as an admiral in their war with Pergamon, and it is in that context that Hannibal supposedly had pots full of venomous snakes catapulted onto the decks of enemy vessels. Eventually the Romans were putting pressure on Prusias as well, and so Hannibal ended his life with poison, apparently drinking the liquid from a ring he wore in case of such an eventually. It was also claimed that he administered the construction of Artaxarta in Armenia, but you have to wonder how many stories were invented in the east claiming a bit of Hannibal.With a price on his head, by all accounts
Did that book talk about trade between Carthage & Egypt. Ptolemaic Egypt established a big trade in papyrus, wheat/barley, and luxury goods (fabrics, perfumes, ceramics, objects from the African interior like ebony & elephant tusks). It sounds like luxury goods were found in Carthage. Any idea what Carthage traded?There was extensive trade between the cities under Carthage's hegemony and those under Ptolemaic Egypt (including Cyrene). There is a chapter on this in The Hellenistic West by Prag and Quinn. Trade relationships had been there for a long time. Miles shows in Carthage Must Be Destroyed that Egyptian products are among the earliest products found at Carthaginian sites. This makes sense since there were extensive contacts between Egypt and the Phoenicians of the Levant. Carthaginian, Liby-Phoenician and Numidian art and architecture was thus influenced by Egyptian culture. In many cases their art seems blatantly Egyptian. In some cases you have fascinating and beautiful buildings like the mausoleum in Sabratha that incorporates Egyptian, Levantine, Greek and Roman styles into something unique."
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