Tuesday, 12 August 2014

The Scipios

Romans broke a treaty by interfering with Carthaginian activities beyond the Ebro. In 219 BC, Hannibal Barca, Carthaginian governor in Spain, besieged and captured Saguntum, thus starting war with Rome. In 218, he crossed the Pyrenees, Gaul and the Alps with 90,000 infantry, 12,000 cavalry and 37 elephants, reached Italy with only 20,000 infantry and 6,000 cavalry, defeated a superior Roman army at the Ticinus River, won other battles and entered Apulia and Campania.

Many Italians joined him, Quintus Fabius Maximus failed to defeat him and, in 211, Hasdrubal Barca arrived from Spain with reinforcements. In 210, Hannibal burned Rome. (The alert reader must notice when this timeline diverges from the one guarded by the Time Patrol.)

In the Patrol timeline, Publius Cornelius Scipio, commanding the Romans, lost at Ticinus and was nearly killed in the retreat but was rescued by his son, Scipio Africanus the Elder. Cornelius attacked the Carthaginians in Spain, thus cutting off Hannibal in Italy, then Africanus defeated Hannibal at Zama.

Neldorians intervened to kill the Scipios at Ticinus but the Patrol counterintervened, restoring the timeline. Roger II of Sicily also lost a battle but escaped in the Patrol timeline but died at that battle in an alternative timeline.

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