Document Type

Honors Thesis

Publication Date



The story of the mercenary armies of Carthage is one of incompetence and disaster, followed by clever innovation. It is a story not just of battles and betrayal, but also of the interactions between dissimilar peoples in a multiethnic army trying to coordinate, fight, and win, while commanded by a Punic officer corps which may or may not have been competent. Carthaginian mercenaries are one piece of a larger narrative about the struggle between Carthage and Rome for dominance in the Western Mediterranean, and their history illustrates the evolution of the mercenary system employed by the Carthaginian Empire to extend her power and ensure her survival.



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