First Punic War Battles > Siege of Drepana

Siege of Drepana

Punic Wars - Punic Wars Decoration


The Siege of Drepana was a battle during the First Punic War that lasted between 249 BC and 241 BC. During this period of the First Punic War the Carthaginian city of Drepana along with nearby Lilybaeum came under siege by the Romans. The Carthaginians were able to score an early victory by destroying the Roman naval blockade during the Battle of Drepana allowed some military and other relief to flow to the besieged ports.

However, the Carthaginian military might lay in the sea and the Romans were able to score land based control over the access to Drepana which had to pass by Mount Eryx. Eventually in 214 BC the Romans would dispatch Gaius Lutatius Catulus who had previously rebuilt the Roman navy and renewed the siege against the cities which prompted some of the Carthaginians to flee back to Carthage for support.

However, in what would become one of the most decisive battles of the First Punic War, the Romans were able to meet the Carthaginian fleet before they arrived at Drepana. In the ensuing Battle of the Aegates Islands and using their own reverse-engineered technology against them, the Romans smashed the Carthaginian fleet. This battle would thus end the First Punic War and force Carthage to concede all of the islands off the coast of Italy.

Coordinates: 38.0167°N 12.5167°E

First Punic War

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Primary Sources

Secondary Sources

Dillon, Matthew; Garland, Lynda (2005). Ancient Rome: From the Early Republic to the Assassination of Julius Caesar. London: Routledge. p. 190. ISBN 0-415-22458-6.

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