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563Battle of Baecula

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  • James Mathews
    Apr 19, 2014
      >>>> An Epic Conflict (Article Report)<<<<

      (The Battle of Baecula -- 208 BC) 

      After years of searching, archaeologists have uncovered the evidence  for the often discussed battle between Rome and Carthage.  The location has now been pinpointed on a Spanish Hilltop and the battlefield has yielded the following artifacts; approximately 2,000 Roman-era metal objects, nearly 700 metal tacks (hobnails), 200 darts, 20 slingshot pellets, 40 coins, and 500 pieces of pottery from over an area of 1,100 acres, as Francisco Gomez, a member of the archaeological team says,”We by contrast conducted a spatial analysis, prospecting the battle landscape and focusing on width over depth to learn what happened.”  A small map of the area of the battlefield was included in the article.  I will redraw this map at a later date and include such in my Roman Studies Blog which is linked to the Militariums.

      The Battle of Baecula was written about by the ancient historians Polybius and Livy, who wrote their passages decades or even perhaps centuries after the conflict, so the description of the area where  the battle took place was never found.  Archaeologists Arturo Ruiz, director of the Center for Iberian Archaeology and his colleague Juan Pedro Bellon studied the passages from both of the ancient writers and then pored over hundreds of square miles of terrain maps to match the descriptions provided by the two ancient historians to find the exact location of this famous battle.

      The article contains two large photographs of the cultivated Spanish landscape as it looks today where the battle was conducted.  Artifacts pictured are the hobnails, Carthaginian slingshot pellets, lead ingots for the fashioning of more pellets, bronze javelin heads, Roman javelin head, a Roman soldier’s amulet, Carthaginian coin, iron fire-starter, a bronze-gold fibula, pottery shards, and a storage pot being restored at the site.

      Reference:

      Roger Atwood, “Archaeology,” An Epic Conflict, (Archaeology Magazine, Jan. / Feb. 2014, Vol. 67, No. 1), Pages 31-36

      Respectfully Submitted

      Marcus Audens