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Chapter Summary

Gisco's latest commanding general Hamilcar, son of Hannibal, in 244 lodged himself and his field army on a spur of Mount Eryx, the lofty height overlooking Drepana and the Roman siege-army, but his bold sorties and raids (which won him the nickname Barca, if this means 'lightning' as usually thought) were pinpricks to the Romans. A newly-built Roman fleet under the consul Quintus Lutatius Catulus appeared off the coast in 242 and threatened Drepana and Lilybaeum with total cutoff from supplies. At Carthage a relief fleet had to be put together. It took months and was ineptly done even so. In early March, 241, when sailing again became feasible, the relief fleet hove into view by the Aegates Islands a few miles from Drepana, its warships weighed down with supplies for the besieged towns.

Keywords: Carthage; Drepana; Gisco; Hamilcar; Hannibal; Lilybaeum; Mount Eryx; Quintus Lutatius Catulus



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