Could Hannibal Barca’s ashes be buried in Malta?

Of course no one knows what happened to Hannibal’s body after he took poison in 183 BC, in Bithynia (part of modern day Turkey). A debate has reawakened in Malta, however, over the mysterious find made by a British person in the early 1800s. There’s not much to the argument, but it makes for interesting reading. Some good comments below the article too. Read it here.

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10 Comments

  1. John Salter
    Posted 30 June 2011 at 16:40 | Permalink

    Ben, I didn’t realise until I’d finished The Ghost’s of Cannae that Hannibal actually lived to the ripe old age of 63 before he committed suicide! Quite remarkable considering the Roman’s would have had him high on their hit list and he had a lot of enemies in Carthage.

  2. benkane
    Posted 30 June 2011 at 21:07 | Permalink

    @John: I know, and what a sad end he had – betrayed by the king of Bithynia to the Romans, he ended it his way. Such a shame. 🙁

  3. John Salter
    Posted 1 July 2011 at 08:52 | Permalink

    Yes it was but I suppose it was his final act of defiance. It showed that he was n’t prepared to be taken alive and humiliated and most likely ritually killed. If the Senate in Carthage had given him the support he deserved, especially when he was on Roman soil, I think history would be a lot different.

    It just goes to show that an awful lot of humanity hasn’t changed in over two thousand years. There are those who use words to destroy others and there are those who act and actually put themselves on the line.

    Hannibal led by example and risked everything for his City and country whilst the corrupt politicians gave him little by way of support from Carthage and a few were clearly hoping he would fail and worked against him.

    He virtually had a free hand for many of the years he was on Italian soil and for such a long period but didn’t have the support and re-enforcements for that final push. He will forever be remembered however, as a military genius.

    He must have been a very charismatic man who others would follow into battle even against overwhelming odds. If you could talk to him imagine the tales he could tell!

  4. benkane
    Posted 2 July 2011 at 11:49 | Permalink

    @John: He must have been soooo charismatic!

  5. Fabitaromunass
    Posted 6 July 2011 at 12:07 | Permalink

    I finished the book last night Ben, good shit! Very good. Are we in trilogy territory? One book for each big Carthaginian victory??

  6. benkane
    Posted 6 July 2011 at 17:08 | Permalink

    @Fabitaromunass: glad you liked it! It’s to be four books, actually. Trasimene and Cannae in the 2nd, Spain and the siege of Syracuse in the third, and the closing in on Carthage in the 4th.

  7. Fabitaromunass
    Posted 6 July 2011 at 18:07 | Permalink

    Nice one. Do you plan all your book then or just shot a load of charcters into a pot and let them work it out? By the way, what book do you recommend for research into the war elephants?

    I start Angus Donalds ‘outlaw’ tonight!!

  8. benkane
    Posted 6 July 2011 at 23:09 | Permalink

    @@Fabitaromunass: Oh, I plan all my books to a ‘T’. I didn’t use to, but I went off on a serious (25,000 word) tangent in The Silver Eagle, and had to rewrite it, so I don’t let that happen (so much!) any more.

    War elephants: look no further than Osprey’s War Elephants by Konstantin Nossov, and War Elephants by John Kistler. Those are the only two I have, and they’re very good indeed.

    Enjoy Outlaw – I did!

  9. Fabitaromunass
    Posted 7 July 2011 at 13:34 | Permalink

    Ah yeah, so was that 25,000 words over your target or the publishers? Was it a completely different story you wrote?

  10. benkane
    Posted 7 July 2011 at 13:49 | Permalink

    @Fabitaromunass: no, it was 25k words that went in the bin! Interesting stuff about life in a Roman camp in the winter, plus an encounter with the Chinese, but which didn’t drive the story well enough. A short story one day, perhaps!

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