Appian's account of the defeat of Regulus by Xanthippus is altogether different from that given by Polybius. I subjoin a translation of the latter: --
"About this time a certain recruiting officer returned to Carthage who had been sent to Greece some time before, bringing a large number of soldiers, and among them a certain Xanthippus, a Lacedemonian, versed in the Spartan discipline and having corresponding experience in matters of war. When he had acquainted himself with the circumstances of the late defeat and had observed what still remained of the Carthaginian forces, and particularly their great strength in cavalry and elephants, he began to put this and that together, and showed his friends how it happened that the Carthaginians had been beaten, not by the Romans, but by the unskilfulness of their own generals. The words of Xanthippus, being rumored around among the multitude and the generals, finally reached the ears of the magistrates, who sent for him in order to get better information. When he came he explained the causes of their recent failure, and showed that if they would follow his advice and choose the level ground for their marches, camps, and battles, they might easily repair their losses and overcome the enemy. The generals accepted this advice and immediately put their forces under his training. When the advice of Xanthippus was spread through the city hopeful talk and rumors became common among the people. When he brought the forces in front of the city, and marshalled them in good order, and began to drill them by divisions, and to give the word of command according to rule, he presented such a contrast to the want of discipline of the former commanders that the rank and file applauded and demanded to be led against the enemy as soon as possible, feeling assured that no misfortune could befall them under the lead of Xanthippus. The generals, seeing the spirits of the soldiers so wonderfully raised, addressed them in a manner befitting the occasion, and a few days later put their forces on the march. They had 12,000 foot, 4000 horse, and about 100 elephants.
"The Romans, seeing the Carthaginians marching through the open country and camping on level ground, were surprised at this unexpected movement and hastened to meet them. At the end of the first day's march they encamped at a distance of only ten stades from the enemy. The next day the Carthaginian generals held a council of war to determine what should be done. But the soldiers, despising the danger, ran together in crowds and, shouting the name of Xanthippus, demanded to be led immediately against the enemy. The generals, observing the eagerness and confidence of their men and being urged by Xanthippus not to lose this opportunity, gave orders to the army to prepare for battle and put everything in the hands of Xanthippus to do as he liked. He took command, ranged the elephants in a single line in front of the whole army, and stationed the Carthaginian phalanx a short distance behind them. He placed the bulk of the mercenaries on the right wing, but the light-armed ones were stationed at the front of each wing, together with the horse. The Romans, observing the enemy's movements, drew up their forces with equal readiness. In order to protect themselves against the onset of the elephants, which they dreaded, they threw forward a large number of skirmishers armed with javelins. Behind these were ranged the legions, and the horse were divided between the two wings. Their line of battle was somewhat shorter than usual, but deeper, being well calculated to receive the attack of the elephants, but not to withstand that of the enemy's horse, which far outnumbered their own. When both armies had been put in battle array, according to their respective plans and divisions, they stood still for a while, each one eagerly expecting the moment of attack.
"At the same time that Xanthippus gave the order for the elephants to advance and break the ranks of the enemy, and for the horse to surround and attack their wings, the Roman soldiers, clashing their arms, according to their custom, and raising a shout, rushed against their adversaries. The Roman horse were speedily put to flight on both wings, being so much inferior in number to the Carthaginians. Their foot soldiers, stationed on the left wing in order to avoid the onset of the elephants and because they despised the enemy's mercenaries, dashed furiously against the Carthaginian right wing, broke it, and pursued them as far as their camp. The first who encountered the elephants were thrust aside by their momentum, or trampled down in heaps, and utterly destroyed, but the column, as a whole, remained unbroken for a considerable time by reason of the depth of the files. When those bringing up the rear were surrounded on all sides by the Carthaginian horse and compelled to turn and ward off this danger, and when those who had struggled through the line of elephants to the front encountered, in the rear of the beasts, the solid Carthaginian phalanx still in perfect order, and were slaughtered by them, the Romans were everywhere in difficulties. The greater part were trampled down by the enormous weight of the elephants and the rest fell in their very ranks under the javelins of the Carthaginian horse. Finally, a few took refuge in flight. As their line of retreat lay through an open country, most of these were destroyed by the enemy's cavalry and elephants. About 500, who had escaped with their general, Marcus, were, after a little, overtaken and made prisoners. About 800 of the Carthaginian mercenaries, who were opposed to the Roman left wing, were killed, and the 2000 Romans who pursued them, being thus carried out of danger, were saved. All the rest were slain except Marcus and those who were retreating with him. Those who escaped found refuge unexpectedly in the city of Aspis. The Carthaginians, having stripped the dead, returned to the city rejoicing over their victory and bringing the Roman general and the prisoners captured with him." (Polybius I., 32-34.)
The Topography of Carthage
The following sketch of the present appearance of the site of ancient Carthage is from the pen of the Rt. Hon. James Bryce, M.P.: --
"At the extremity of a peninsula stretching eight or ten miles into the Mediterranean, and connected with the mainland by a flat isthmus, across which the sea must once have flowed, there is a ridge of hills, forming a sort of semicircle some four miles long, with its convex turned toward the sea, and rising at its highest point to about 400 feet. The sea under the hills is deep and sheltered from the northwest, the quarter whence most high winds come, while toward the land the neck of the peninsula, even now only some three miles wide, and 2500 years ago probably much narrower, makes the defence of a settlement upon the hills comparatively easy. It was at the southern extremity of this line of hills that the Tyrian founders of Carthage planted their settlement, and the last eminence or hummock toward the south became their citadel or Bozrah (for 'Bozrah ' seems to be the true Phnician form of the word which the Greek and Roman authors have written Byrsa). This hummock rises about 200 feet above the sea, from which its base is a quarter of a mile distant. It is steep towards the sea on the east and the south, while sloping more gently towards the west. On it and around its base the city arose. The ports were excavated beneath it to the southeast, and were easily made large enough (the ground being partly alluvial and the rock soft) to contain a large fleet and many merchant vessels. Thus the position was both convenient and strong. The citadel defended the ports, and while the citadel was surrounded by a wall of its own, the city, stretching along the line of eminences to the north, had also an enclosing wall of its own, and thus gave a double protection to the citadel on the sides (north and west) where the acclivities were gentle.
"So much is clear. The so-called ports which are now visible have been dug out afresh recently, on what is believed to be the site, or part of the site, of the ancient ports. The space they occupy is so decidedly smaller than the descriptions of ancient writers imply that some antiquaries suppose there existed another port, enclosed by moles projecting into the sea, which has since vanished. The remains of the amphitheatre have been unearthed in the lower ground at the western base of the hill. And as to the Bozrah itself, on whose summit stood in Punic times the temple of the great god Eshmun, and where probably stood afterwards the residence of the Roman proconsul, and still later the palace of the Vandal kings, there is no question. But almost everything else is uncertain. Various spots have been suggested as the sites of the temples and churches and other public edifices mentioned by the ancient writers, but no data have yet been discovered sufficient to fix them. Even the direction of the walls and the extent of ground covered by the city are matters of controversy, so far as the evidence of the diggings goes. The ground area included in the compass of the city proper would appear to have been small (hardly more than a square mile) compared with its population, which is said to have at one time reached 700,000 or even 1,000,000. But probably there were large suburbs; and as the bulk of the population consisted of slaves, many might well be crowded into a small space.
* * * * * * *
"As the position is strong for defence, with the sea environing it, as it is admirable for maritime empire, lying in the middle of the Mediterranean, with Sicily and Sardinia close at hand, half-way from the mother-land of Tyre to the outermost Phnician settlements on the edge of the ocean, so it rivals in the nobility of its landscape Constantinople or Corinth or Gibraltar. The hill of Bozrah is not lofty, but it rises so steeply from the sea, and commands so unbroken a prospect in every direction, except northeast (where it is overtopped by Sidi Bou Said, another eminence of the same chain of hills two miles away), that the view seems boundless over both land and sea. To the east there is the vast expanse of the Mediterranean, broken twenty-five miles off by the rocky isle of Zembra. To the southeast a long line of hills rises over the ample bosom of the Gulf of Tunis, running far out to the Fair Promontory, as the ancients called it, now Cape Bon. To the northwest, beyond the flat lands which the sea once covered, rise the gentler ridges where stand the lonely ruins of Utica, the elder sister of Carthage, the spot where Cato's death left Julius Csar master of all the Roman world except Spain. To the south and southwest three magnificent mountain groups successively arrest the eye and carry it far into the interior of Africa. Nearest, with its foot washed by the sea, is the double-peaked summit of Bou Kornein, the mountain of the two-horned Baal (Saturnus Baalcaranensis, as the Romans called him), where the ruins of his temple have been recently discovered. Further to the south is Jebel Resas, the Lead Mountain, among whose gorges the mercenary troops that revolted from Carthage, and brought her almost to destruction after the First Punic war, were hemmed in and destroyed by famine and the sword. Furthest of all, and highest, is the magnificent pinnacle of Zaghwan, ' Mons Zeugitanus,' whence the Zeugitanian province took its name. In this peak rise the copious springs which, led by an aqueduct more than eighty miles in length, supplied Carthage with the purest water, and from its craggy top the view extends far away to the south over plains once rich, but now mostly waste and desolate, almost to the verge of the Sahara. Immediately beneath the hill of Carthage is the narrow strip of land that divides the lagoon of Tunis from the sea, with Goletta, long a stronghold of the Moorish pirates, stormed by the Emperor Charles V., and again (after his troops had been withdrawn) the arsenal and fortress of the Beys, rising upon it at the point where a narrow channel gives access from the sea to the lagoon. And at the head of the lagoon, its smooth surface ruffled only by the flocks of flamingoes that disport themselves in the sunshine, rise the minarets and cupolas of Tunis, glittering white across the blue waters, with line after line of hill seen behind it, growing dimmer and more delicate in their soft blue-gray tints till they sink beneath the western horizon on the borders of Numidia. As there are few more exquisite views in the world, so there are few which embrace a region more full of stirring and terrible events. For 1600 years, down to the destruction of Carthage by the Arabs in A.D. 697 a fierce and strenuous life ebbed and flowed incessantly round this hill and on the plain that lies between it and Tunis. For 1200 years the hill has stood silent and melancholy as it stands now, and, in the words of Tasso,
"'Low lies proud Carthage; and the silent shore Keeps of her lordly ruins scarce a trace.'"
FROM THE VATICAN MSS. OF CARDINAL MAI
BOMILCAR being under accusation fled before his trial, 397 and with him Jugurtha, who uttered that famous saying about bribetakers, that "the whole city of Rome could be bought if a purchaser could be found for it."
Metellus went back to the African province, where he 399 was accused by the soldiers of slothfulness toward the enemy and of cruelty toward his own men, because he punished offenders severely.
Metellus put the whole senate of Vacca to death because 401 they had betrayed the Roman garrison to Jugurtha, and with them, also, Turpilius, the prefect of the guard, a Roman citizen, who was under suspicion of being in league with the enemy. After Jugurtha had delivered up to Metellus certain Thracian and Ligurian deserters, the latter cut off the hands of some, and others he buried in the earth up to their stomachs, and after transfixing them with arrows and darts set fire to them while they were still alive.
FROM "THE EMBASSIES"
When Marius arrived at Cirta messengers came to him from Bocchus asking that he would send somebody to hold a conference with him. He accordingly sent Aulus Manlius, 403 his lieutenant, and Cornelius Sulla, his qustor. To them Bocchus said that he fought against the Romans on account of the acts of Marius, who had taken from him the territory which he himself had taken from Jugurtha. To this complaint of Bocchus, Manlius replied that the Romans had taken this territory from Syphax by the law of war, and had made a present of it to Masinissa, and that such gifts were made by the Romans to be kept by those who received them during the pleasure of the Senate and people of Rome. Nor did the Romans take back their gifts without reason. Masinissa was dead, and Jugurtha, who had murdered his grandchildren, was at war with the Romans. "It is not right," he said, "that an enemy should keep the gift that we made to a friend, nor should you think that you can take from Jugurtha property that belongs to the Romans." These were the words of Manlius concerning the territory in question.
FROM "THE EMBASSIES"
Bocchus sent another embassy who were to solicit peace from Marius and urge Sulla to assist them in the negotiation. These ambassadors were despoiled by robbers on the road, but Sulla received them kindly and entertained them until Marius returned from Gtulia. Marius advised them to urge Bocchus to consult with Sulla as to all his affairs. Accordingly, when Bocchus was inclined to betray Jugurtha he sent messengers around to the neighboring Ethiopians (who extend from eastern Ethiopia westward to the Mauritanian Mount Atlas) under pretence of raising a new army, and then asked Marius to send Sulla to him for a conference, and Marius did so. In this way Bocchus himself, and his friend Magdalses, and a certain freedman of Carthage, named Cornelius, deceived Apsar, the friend of Jugurtha, who had been left in Bocchus' camp to keep watch on his doings.