The history of Hannibal Barca , one of the greatest military commanders of the ancient world, is one which has fascinated historians and generals throughout the last two millennia, and yet his final secrets seem often set to never reveal themselves, and especially since Hannibal’s exact route over the Alps – the great secret so long disputed for centuries – seems to have at last been uncovered with the recent discovery of petrified elephant droppings, the historian has to sometimes ask himself, what else is there to find?
Whilst archaeological discoveries will, of course, turn up from time to time to help us understand more of Hannibal and of Carthage , it is rare indeed, and perhaps the rarest of all things for an historian to discover a whole Hannibal battlefield. Yet, this is what Ricky D Phillips, an Edinburgh-based military historian, has just done. And it isn’t just any Hannibal battlefield which he has uncovered either, but the site of Hannibal’s first ever battle: the battle of the Tagus.
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