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Collective name on the wars between the Punic (the Romans used the name Poeni on the people of Carthage) city state of Carthage (now outside Tunis, Tunisia) and Rome, the first war starting in 264 BCE, and the last ending in 146. The wars were fought between the two strongest contenders for control over the central Mediterranean Sea of the time. For a long time during the second Punic war, it could seem that Carthage would become the victor. The wars ended with a strong destruction of Carthage, that ended the city's period as an independent power house and a important trade centre. However, the city would later became an important trading centre inside the Roman Empire.

In first half of 3rd century BC Carthage held many territories that made it easy for them to control and dominate the western Mediterranean Sea, but when they conquered Messana (now Messina) on the north eastern tip of Sicily in 264, they faced the Romans for war for the first time. The locals of Messana had requested Rome for aid, and from many different reasons Rome came to thier rescue. The fear of a powerful neighbour was only one out of several motivations by the Romans. The promise of glory and plunder was also of great importance. This war was fought mainly at sea around Sicily, and Carthage was by far the strongest of the two in this field. This supremacy was met by a large scale Roman construction of a naval fleet. After some years this brought its results, and it was reflected in the fightings, where Rome became stronger and stronger. In 256 Carthage was besieged, but the Romans were defeated. Then for some years Carthage was the most successful, notedly under the leadership of Hamilcar, but with the battle at the Aegates Islands in 241, the Carthagians were beaten so painfully that they requested peace. This agreement involved leaving Sicily and paying a huge indemnity. Rome now controlled Sicily.

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Collective name on the wars between the Punic (the Romans used the name Poeni on the people of Carthage) city state of Carthage (now outside Tunis, Tunisia) and Rome, the first war starting in 264 BCE, and the last ending in 146. The wars were fought between the two strongest contenders for control over the central Mediterranean Sea of the time. For a long time during the second Punic war, it could seem that Carthage would become the victor. The wars ended with a strong destruction of Carthage, that ended the city's period as an independent power house and a important trade centre. However, the city would later became an important trading centre inside the Roman Empire.

In first half of 3rd century BC Carthage held many territories that made it easy for them to control and dominate the western Mediterranean Sea, but when they conquered Messana (now Messina) on the north eastern tip of Sicily in 264, they faced the Romans for war for the first time. The locals of Messana had requested Rome for aid, and from many different reasons Rome came to thier rescue. The fear of a powerful neighbour was only one out of several motivations by the Romans. The promise of glory and plunder was also of great importance. This war was fought mainly at sea around Sicily, and Carthage was by far the strongest of the two in this field. This supremacy was met by a large scale Roman construction of a naval fleet. After some years this brought its results, and it was reflected in the fightings, where Rome became stronger and stronger. In 256 Carthage was besieged, but the Romans were defeated. Then for some years Carthage was the most successful, notedly under the leadership of Hamilcar, but with the battle at the Aegates Islands in 241, the Carthagians were beaten so painfully that they requested peace. This agreement involved leaving Sicily and paying a huge indemnity. Rome now controlled Sicily. More...

 
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