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armies wished sincerely the prosperity of the state. They did not act with the same zeal, nor expose themselves to dangers with equal resolution, for a republic which they considered as foreign, and which conse. quently was indifferent to them, as they would have done for their native country, whose happiness constitutes that of the several members who compose it.
In great reverses of fortune, the kings in alliance with the Carthaginians might easily be detached from their interest, either by a jealousy which the grandeur of a more powerful neighbour naturally gives, or from the hopes of reaping greater advantages from a new friend, or from the fear of being involved in the misfortunes of an old ally.
The tributary nations, being impatient under the weight and disgrace of a yoke which had been forced upon their necks, greatly flattered themselves with the hopes of finding one less galling in changing their masters; or, in case servitude was unavoidable, the choice was indifferent to them, as will appear from many instances in the course of this history,
The mercenary forces, accustomed to measure their fidelity by the largeness or continuance of their pay, were ever ready, on the least discontent, or the slightest expectation of a more considerable stipend, to desert to the enemy with whom they had just before fought, and to turn their arms against those who had invited them to their assistance.
Thus the grandeur of the Carthaginians being sus. tained only by these foreign supports, was shaken to the very foundation when they were once taken away.
? As Syphax and Masinissa.
And if to this there happened to be added an interruption of their commerce, by which only they subsisted, arising from the loss of a naval engagement, they imagined themselves to be on the brink of ruin, and abandoned themselves to despondency and despair, as was evidently seen at the end of the first
Aristotle, in the treatise where he shews the advantages and defects of the government of Carthage, finds no fault with its keeping up none but foreign forces; it is therefore probable, that the Carthaginians did not fall into this practice till a long time after. But the rebellions which harassed Carthage in its later years ought to have taught its citizens that no miseries are comparable to those of a government which is supported only by foreigners; since neither zeal, security, nor obedience can be expected from them.
But this was not the case with the republic of Rome, As the Romans had neither trade nor money, they were not able to hire forces in order to push on their conquests with the same rapidity as the Carthaginians : but then, as they procured every thing from within themselves, and as all the parts of the state were intimately united, they had surer resources in great misfortunes than the Carthaginians. And for this reason, they never once thought of suing for peace after the battle of Cannd, as the Carthaginians had done in a less imminent danger.
The Carthaginians had, besides, a body of troops (which was not very numerous) levied from among their own citizens; and this was a kind of school, in which the flower of their nobility, and those whose talents and ambition prompted them to aspire to the first dignities, learned the rudiments of the art of war. From among these were selected all the general officers, who were put at the head of the different bodies of their forces, and had the chief command in the armies. This nation was too jealous and suspicious to employ foreign generals. But they were not so distrustful of their own citizens as Rome and Athens; for the Carthaginians, at the same time that they Invested them with great power, did not guard against the abuse they might make of it, in order to oppress
their country. The command of armies was neither annual nor limited to any time, as in the two republics above mentioned. Many generals held their commissions for a great number of years, either till the war or their lives ended; though they were still accountable to the commonwealth for their conduct, and liable to be recalled whenever a real oversite or misfortune, or the superior interest of a cabal, furnished an opportunity for it.
Ir cannot be said that the Carthaginians renounced entirely the glory which results from study and knowledge. The sending Masinissa, son of a powerful king, a thither for education, gives us room to believe that Carthage was provided with an excellent school. • The great Hannibal, who in all respects was an orna
• King of the Massylians in Afric. • Nepos in vita Annibalis.
ment to that city, was not unacquainted with polite literature, as will be seen hereafter. Mago, another very celebrated general, did as much honour to Carthage by his pen as by his victories. He wrote twenty eight volumes upon husbandry, which the Roman senate had in such esteem, that, after the taking of Carthage, when they presented the African princes with the libraries founded there, (another proof that learning was not entirely banished from Carthage,) they gave orders to have these books translated into Latin, though Cato had before written books on that subject. There is still extant a Greek version of a treatise drawn up by Hanno in the Punic tongue, relating to a voyage he made, by order of the senate, with a considerable fleet round Africa, for the settling of different colonies in that part of the world. This Hanno is believed to be more ancient than that person of the same name, who lived in the time of Agathocles.
Clitomachus, called, in the Punic language, Asdrubal, was a great philosopher. He succeeded the famous Carneades, whose disciple he had been, and maintained in Athens the honour of the academic sect. Cicero says, that he was a more sensible man, and fonder of study than the Carthaginians generally are.
Cic. de Orat. l. i. n. 249. Plin. l. xviii. c. 3. * These books were written by Mago in the Punic language, and translated into Greek by Cassius Dionysius of Utica, from whose version we may probably suppose the Latin was made.
e Voss. de Hist. Gr. 1. iv. * Plut. de Fort. Alex. p. 328. Diog. Laert. in Clitom. & Clitomachus, homo et acutus ut Ponus, et valde studiosus ac diligens. Academ. Quæst. I iv. n. 98. VOL. I.
He composed several books, in one of which he drew a piece to console the unhappy citizens of Carthage, who, by the ruin of their city, were reduced to slavery.
I might rank among, or rather place at the head of the writers who have adorned Africa with their compositions, the celebrated Terence ; himself being singly capable of reflecting infinite honour on his country by the fame of his productions, if, on this account, Carthage, the place of his birth, ought not to be less considered as his country than Rome, where he was educated, and acquired that purity of style, that delicacy, and elegance, which have gained him the admiration of all succeeding ages. It is supposed, that he was carried off when an infant, or at least very young, by the Numidians in their incursions into the Cartha. ginian territories ; during the war carried on between these two nations, from the conclusion of the second, to the beginning of the third Punic war. He was sold a slave to Terentius Lucanus, a Roman senator, who, after giving him an excellent education, gave him his
liberty, and called him by his own name, as was then > the custom. He was united in a very strict friendship with the second Scipio Africanus, and Lelius ; and it was a common report at Rome, that he had the assistance of these two great men in composing his pieces. The poet, so far from endeavouring to stifle a report so advantageous to him, made a merit of it. Only six of his comedies are extant. Some authors (according to Suetonius, the writer of his life) say, that in his return from Greece, whither he had made a voyage, he lost a hundred and eight comedies translated from Menander,
Tusc. Quæst. 1. iji, n. 54.
i Suet. in vit. Terent.