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Engineering an Empire - The Carthage
February 11, 2012
Engineering, an, Empire, The, Carthages
The Carthage was a major urban centre that has existed for nearly 3,000 years on the Gulf of Tunis, developing from a Phoenician colony of the 1st millennium BC. It is currently a suburb of Tunis, Tunisia, with a population of 20,715 (2,004 Census).
The first civilization that developed within the city's sphere of influence is referred to as Punic (a form of the word "Phoenician") or Carthaginian. The city of Carthage is located on the eastern side of Lake Tunis across from the centre of Tunis. According to Greek historians it was founded by Phoenician colonists from Tyre under the leadership of Elissa who was re-named (Queen Dido) in Virgil's Aeneid. It became a large and rich city and thus a major power in the Mediterranean. The resulting rivalry with Syracuse and Rome was accompanied by several wars with respective invasions of each other's homeland.
Hannibal's invasion of Italy in the Second Punic War culminated in the Carthaginian victory at Cannae and led to a serious threat to the continuation of Roman rule over Italy; however, Carthage emerged from the conflict weaker after Hannibal's defeat at the Battle of Zama in 202 BC. After the Third Punic War, the city was destroyed by the Romans in 146 BC. However, the Romans refounded Carthage, which became the Empire's fourth most important city and the capital of the short-lived Vandal kingdom. It remained one of the most important Roman cities until the Muslim conquest when it was destroyed a second time in AD 698.
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