Episode 1.14 – The Death of Motya

Motya was going to die. And Motya knew it. In the intense heat of the summer of 397, the Motyans stood behind their defensive walls, which they had just fortified using the stones from the ruins of an ancient temple nearby. And they had also taken the bold decision of backing themselves into a corner, …

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Episode 1.13 – Enter Dionysius – Part II – The Battle of Gela

Gela was a Doric city, founded in 688 BC by Greeks from the islands of Rhodes and Crete. It was the metropolis of Acragas. She was built on a long low hill, running parallel to the South Eastern coast of Sicily. She took her name from the river that ran to her east, which flowed, …

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Episode 1.12 – Enter Dionysius – Part I – The Fall of Acragas

During the 415 - 413 BC Athenian invasion of Sicily, a Syracusan aristocrat named Hermocrates had become the hero of the day, by uniting all the Sicilian Greeks against the Athenians. He was then sent as a naval commander to the Peloponnese to help the Spartans out against the Athenians there. But victory in this …

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Episode 1.11 – Revenge of the Magonids

With ten episodes on Carthaginian history under our collective belts, we have come to a close on what we can call the “early history” of Carthage. From this episode, that is Episode 1.11, onwards, we will open up a new chapter. For the next little while, maybe five to ten episodes, we will cover a …

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Episode 1.10 – The Punic Empire

Last time, we had taken a look at how after the Battle of Himera, Carthage went through what was probably a voluntary program of austerity which correlated directly with her acquisition of the Western Mediterranean metals trade. We had seen how Carthage began with the silver and tin trade in Iberia and Europe and extended …

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Episode 1.9 – Atlantic Adventures

In the last episode, we had looked a crucial battle in the history of Carthage, that of Himera. We examined the long chain of causes that lead to the conflict and studied its aftermath. Towards the end of the episode, I had pointed out that the effect of the Battle of Himera was such that …

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Episode 1.8 – The Battle of Himera

In the last episode, we began looking at Carthage's interactions with other civilizations active in the Mediterranean during the sixth century BC. We looked at her interactions with the Greeks, the Etruscans and the, as of yet nascent, Romans. The last episode was a patchwork of different events that took us from the 540s BC …

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Episode 1.7 – Carthage & the Mediterranean

In the last episode, we took a look at Carthage's early kings. We examined the stories of the first four kings of the city. We used the four kings as anchors with which to ground our discussion on Carthage’s early politics. Apart from the politics, the one other thing that we observe during this time …

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Episode 1.6 – The Early Kings

In the last episode, we examined the three Carthaginian founding myths that the Greco-Roman literature describes. We looked at the legend of Elissa and examined her misfortunes and contrivances in detail. We saw how she escaped the clutches of her brother and, after a short stay in Cyprus, landed at Utica and founded the city …

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Episode 1.5 – The Founding of Carthage

In the previous episodes, I've summarized as briefly as I could the history of Tyre's colonization of the Mediterranean, and the circumstances that led to that migration. We've seen how Tyre's lust for wealth made her plant small trading stations all over the Mediterranean, and how the expansion of Assyrian hegemony in the Levant caused …

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