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Were totally defeated with great slaughter. Aga-thocles took refuge in Gela ; but Hamilcar, instead of besieging him there, employed himself in gaining over or reducing the other cities of Sicily, most of which gladly forsook the alliance of the Syracusan tyrant and joined the Carthaginians. (Diod. xix. 106—110; Justin. xxii. 3.) It was now that Agathocles adopted the daring resolution of trans­ferring the seat of war to Africa, whither he pro­ceeded in person, leaving his brother Antander to withstand Hamilcar in Sicily. The latter does not appear to have laid siege to Syracuse itself, con­tenting himself with blockading it by sea, while he himself was engaged in reducing other parts of Sicily. On receiving intelligence from Carthage of the destruction of the fleet of Agathocles, he made an attempt to terrify the Syracusans into submission ; but having been frustrated in this as well as in the attempt to carry the walls by sur­prise, he again withdrew from before the city. (Diod. xx. 15, 16.) At length, having made himself master of almost all the rest of Sicily (b. c. 309), he determined to direct his efforts in earnest against Syracuse ; but being misled by an am­biguous prophecy, he was induced to attempt to surprise the city by a night attack, in which his troops were thrown into disorder and repulsed. He himself, in the confusion, fell into the hands of the enemy, by whom he was put to death in the most ignominious manner, and his head sent to Agathocles in Africa as a token of their victory (Diod. xx. 29, 30 ; Justin. xxii. 7 ; Cic. deDiv. i. 44; Val. Max. i. 7, east. § 8.)

7. A general of the Carthaginians in the first Punic War. We know nothing of his family or connections, but he must be carefully distinguished from the great Hamilcar Barca [No. 8], with whom he has been confounded by Zonaras (viii. 10), as well as by some modern writers. It was in the third year of the war (b. c. 262) that he was ap­pointed to succeed Hanno in the command, when that general had failed in averting the fall of Agri-gentum. (Diod. xxiii. JExc. Hoescfiel. 9. p. 503 ; Zonar. I. c. See hanno, No. 5.) His first oper­ations were very successful ; and notwithstanding the great defeat of the Carthaginian fleet off Mylae by Duilius (b. c. 260), Hamilcar for a time main­tained the superiority by land. Learning that the Roman allies were encamped near Therma, apart from the legionary troops, he fell suddenly upon them, surprised their camp, and put 4000 .of them to the sword. (Polyb. i. 24.) After this he ap­pears to have traversed the island with his vic­torious arni3r, as we find him making himself master of Enna and Camarina, both of which were betrayed to him by the inhabitants. He at the same time fortified the stronghold of Drepanum, which became in the latter part of the war one of the most important fortresses of the Carthaginians. (Diod. xxiii. p.' 503 ; Zonar. viii. 11.) In the year 257 he commanded the Punic fleet on the north coast of Sicily;, and fought a naval action with the Roman consul C. Atilius, in which, ac­cording to Polybius, the victory was undecided, though the Roman commander was honoured with a triumph. (Polyb. i. 25, 27 ; Zonar. viii. 12 ; Fast. Capitol.) In the following year (256), we find him associated with Hanno in the command of the great Carthaginian fleet, which was de­signed .to prevent the passage of the Roman expe­dition to Africa under the consuls M. Atilius Re-


gulus and L. Manlius Vulso. The two fleets met off Ecnomus, on the south coast of Sicily: that of the Carthaginians consisted of 350 quinqueremes, while the Romans had 330 ships of war, besides transports. In the battle that ensued, Hamilcai, who commanded the left wing of the Carthaginian fleet, at first obtained some advantage, but the Romans ultimately gained a complete victory. Above 30 of the Carthaginian ships were sunk "or destroyed, and 64 taken. (Polyb. i. 25—28 ; Zonar. viii. 12; Eutrop. ii. 21 ; Oros. iv. 8.) Ha­milcar escaped with his remaining ships to He-raclea Minoa, where he soon after received orders to repair immediately to Carthage, now threatened by the Roman army, which had effected its land­ing in Africa. On his arrival, he was associated with Hasdrubal and Bostar in the command of the army, which was opposed to Regulus, and must consequently share with those generals the blame of the want of skill and judgment so con­spicuous in the conduct of the campaign. [bostar; xanthippus.] This incapacity on their part led to the defeat of the Carthaginian army at Adis: we are not told by Polybius what became of the generals after this battle, but his expressions would seem to imply that they still retained their com­mand ; it appears at least probable that the Ha­milcar mentioned by Orosius (iv. 1) as being sent immediately after the defeat of Regulus to subdue the revolted Numidians was the one of whom we are now treating. On the other hand, it is vaguely asserted by Floras (ii. 2) that the Cartha­ginian generals were either slain or taken prison­ers ; and it may perhaps be this Hamilcar of whom Diodorus relates (Exc. Vales, xxiv.) that he was given up, together with Bostar, to the kindred of Regulus, and tortured by them in a cruel manner, in revenge for the fate of their kinsman. It is not, however, clear whether in this story, which is at best but a doubtful one, Hamilcar and Bostar were represented as captives or as hostages. (See Nie-buhr, Hist, of Rome, vol. iii. p. 300 ; Polyb. i. 30, 3J ; Eutrop. ii. 21 ; Oros. iv. 8 ; Floras, ii. 1.)

8. Surnamed barca, an epithet supposed to be related to the Hebrew Barak, and to signify " lightning." (Gesenius, Ling. Phoenie. Monum. p. 403.) It was merely a personal appellation, and is not to be regarded as a family name, though from the great distinction that he obtained, we often find the name of Barcine applied either to his family or his party in the state. (Niebuhr, Lect. on Rom. Hist. vol. i. p. 134, not.) We know nothing of him previous to his appointment to the command of the Carthaginian forces in Sicity, in the eighteenth year of the first Punic War, b. c. 247. He was at this time quite a young man (admodum adolescentzdus, Corn. Nep. Hamilc. 1), but had already given proofs of his abilities in war, which led to his being named as the successor of Carthalo. His first operations fully justified the choice, and were characterised by the same energy and daring as distinguished the whole of his subsequent career. At the time that he arrived in Sicily the Romans were masters of the whole island, with the exception of the two for­tresses of Drepanum and Lilybaeum, both of which were blockaded by them on the land side, and the Carthaginians had for some time past contented themselves with defending these two strongholds, and keeping open their communication with them by sea. But Hamilcar, after ravaging with hia

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