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Appian's History of Rome: The Punic Wars

Legionary standard (of XXX Ulpia Traiana reenactment group). Photo Jona Lendering.
Appian of Alexandria (c.95-c.165) is the author of a Roman History and one of the most underestimated of all Greek historians. Although only his books on the Roman Civil Wars survive in their entirety, large parts of other books have also come down to us. His account of the Punic Wars is fortunately among these better preserved parts.

The modern reader will be surprised to learn about its contents, because the conflict we know as the First Punic War is absent (Appian calls it the Sicilian war), and the historian has treated the Spanish and Italian parts of what is now known as the Second Punic War in his books on the Spanish wars and Hannibalic war. What Appian offers is a description of all Roman military operations in Africa from the final phase of the war against Hannibal until the final pacification by the emperor Augustus. There is an appendix on the Numidian Wars.

The translation was made by Horace White; footnotes and additions in green by Jona Lendering.

There are two systems to divide the Punic Wars: in 136 sections or 20 chapters. On these webpages, the text is divided into sections; the following table shows the division into chapters. 

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1 §1: Origins of Carthage
§2: Outline of the Punic history
§3: First Punic War
§4: Death of Xanthippus and Regulus
§5: The Mercenary War
2 The Second Punic War
§6: War in Spain
§7: Debate about Scipio's invasion of Africa
§8: Scipio's bodyguard
§9: Carthaginian countermeasures
§10: Hasdrubal, Syphax, Massinissa, and Sophoniba
§11: Massinissa prepares for war
§12: Massinissa's war against Syphax and Carthage
3 §13: Scipio crosses to Africa
§14: Skirmish at Utica
§15: Sack of Locha
§16: Siege of Utica
§17: Negotiations of Syphax
§18: Syphax takes Tholon
4 §19: Speech of Scipio
§20: Speech of Scipio
§21: Scipio attacks the camp of Hasdrubal
§22: Retreat of Syphax
§23: Result of the attack
§24: Scipio advances against Carthage
§25: Indecisive naval engagement
5 §26: Massinissa defeats Syphax
§27: Syphax and Sophoniba
§28: Death of Sophonisba
§29: Plot to burn Scipio's camp
§30: Siege of Utica raised
6 §31: Negotiations
§32: Scipio's peace propasal
§33: Hannibals' first actions in Africa
§34: The Carthaginians violate the armistice
§35: Return of the Carthaginian envoys
§36: Scipio blockades Carthage
§37: Hannibal proposes a second armistice
7 §38: Riots in Carthage
§39: Second armistice broken
§40: Hannibal prepares for battle
§41: Scipio prepares for battle
§42: Speeches of Scipio and Hannibal
§43: Battle of Zama: fight against the elephants
§44: Battle of Zama
§45: Battle of Zama: duel of Scipio and Hannibal
§46: Battle of Zama: duel of Massinissa  and Hannibal
§47: Hannibal's flight
8 §48: Spoils of the Victory
§49: Carthaginian embassy to Scipio
§50: Speech of Hasdrubal Eriphus
§51: Speech of Hasdrubal Eriphus
§52: Speech of Hasdrubal Eriphus
§53: Speech of Scipio
§54: Speech of Scipio: peace conditions
9 §55: Hannibal advises peace
§56: Envoys to Rome
§57: Debate in the Senate: a call for moderation
§58: Debate in the Senate: a call for moderation
§59: Debate in the Senate: a call for moderation
§60: Debate in the Senate: a call for moderation
§61: Debate in the Senate: a call for moderation
§62: Debate in the Senate: a call for harshness
§63: Debate in the Senate: a call for harshness
§64: Debate in the Senate: a call for harshness
§65: Scipio's peace treaty ratified
§66: Scipio's triumph
10 The entr'acte
§67: Massinissa's depredations
§68: Carthage's conflict with Massinissa
§69: Cato visits Carthage
§70: War with Massinissa
§71: Scipio Aemilianus sees the battle
§72: The war continued
§73: Carthaginian army defeated
11 The Third Punic War
§74: Unclear answers by the Senate
§75: The Roman expeditionary force
§76: The declaration of war
§77: Hostages sent
§78: Speech of the Carthaginian envoys
§79: Speech of the Carthaginian envoys
12 §80: The Carthaginians hand over their weapons
§81: Censorinus asks the Carthaginians to abandon their city
§82: Hopeless position of the Carthaginians
§83: Speech of Banno
§84: Speech of Banno
§85: Speech of Banno
§86: Speech of Censorinus
§87: Speech of Censorinus
§88: Speech of Censorinus
§89: Speech of Censorinus
13 §90: Roman refusal to allow further negotiations
§91: Return of the ambassadors to Carthage
§92: Panic in Carthage
§93: Carthage resolves to fight
§94: Pause
14 §95: Topography of Carthage
§96: The two harbors
§97: Unsuccessful Roman attacks
§98: Roman rams destroyed
§99: The Roman fleet burned
§100: Himilco Phameas and Scipio Aemilianus
15 §101: Increasing fame of Scipio
§102: Unsuccessful expedition against Hasdrubal
§103: Scipio saves four cohorts
§104: Burial of the dead Roman soldiers
16 §105: Death of Massinissa
§106: Necrology of Massinissa
§107: Scipio meets Phameas
§108: Treason of Phameas
§109: Scipio in Rome
§110: Piso unsuccessfully besieges Hippagreta
§111: The Carthaginians gain self-confidence
17 §112: Scipio elected consul
§113: Attack by Mancinus
§114: Scipio rescues Mancinus
§115: Condition of the Roman army
§116: Speech of Scipio
18 §117: Scipio restores discipline and takes Megara
§118: Cruelties of Hasdrubal
§119: Scipio's camp
§120: Famine in Carthage
§121: Scipio's failed attempt to close the harbor
§122: Indecisive naval engagement
§123: Fight for the quay
§124: Heroic Carthaginian counterattack
§125: The Romans take the quay
§126: Scipio captures Nepheris
19 §127: Scipio takes the inner harbor
§128: Street fights
§129: Destruction of the populace
§130: Surrender of the people in Byrsa
§131: Hasdrubal and his wife
§132: Scipio's tears
20 §133: The spoils
§134: Rejoicings in Rome
§135: Africa becomes a province
§136: Carthage rebuilt by Julius Caesar and Augustus
Appendix: The Numidian War
Appian   :   Roman History   :   part 1
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