Third Punic War > Third Punic War Generals

Third Punic War Generals

Punic Wars - Punic Wars Decoration


The Third Punic War (149-146 BCE) saw several key military leaders from both the Roman Republic and Carthage. These generals played crucial roles in the conflict, which ultimately led to the destruction of Carthage. Here is an overview of the prominent generals involved in the Third Punic War:

Carthaginian Generals

See Carthaginian Generals

Hasdrubal the Boetharch

Hasdrubal, often referred to as Hasdrubal the Boetharch, was a leading Carthaginian general during the Third Punic War. He was a member of the Carthaginian aristocracy and held significant military authority. Hasdrubal commanded the Carthaginian defense during the siege of Carthage. He organized the city's defenses and coordinated the resistance against the Roman forces.

Hasdrubal fortified the city and led numerous sorties and counterattacks to disrupt the Roman siege works. He played a crucial role in defending the Carthaginian harbor against Roman assaults, though ultimately unsuccessful. Hasdrubal led the defense during the final assault on Carthage, demonstrating significant tenacity and resilience. After the fall of Carthage, Hasdrubal surrendered to Scipio. His family, including his wife and children, famously committed suicide by throwing themselves into the flames of the burning city to avoid capture, a testament to the desperate and tragic end of Carthage.

Diogenes of Carthage

See Diogenes of Carthage

Roman Generals

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Lucius Marcius Censorinus

Lucius Marcius Censorinus served alongside Manilius as consul and co-commander of the Roman forces in Africa. Like Manilius, Censorinus was involved in the initial siege operations and the establishment of the Roman blockade. Censorinus also encountered fierce Carthaginian resistance and logistical challenges, which impeded the Roman efforts. His joint leadership with Manilius underscored the limitations of Roman tactics before Scipio Aemilianus's appointment.

Scipio Aemilianus

See Scipio Aemilianus

Scipio Aemilianus (Publius Cornelius Scipio Africanus Aemilianus), the adoptive grandson of the famous Scipio Africanus who defeated Hannibal in the Second Punic War, was a prominent Roman general and statesman. Appointed commander in 147 BCE due to his reputation and political influence, Scipio Aemilianus took charge of the Roman siege of Carthage. He is credited with reorganizing the Roman forces, implementing strict discipline, and employing effective siege tactics.

Scipio constructed a massive trench and wall around Carthage to cut off supplies and reinforcements. He led a successful assault on the Carthaginian harbor, which was a turning point in the siege. Scipio directed the final, brutal assault on the city, which culminated in Carthage’s fall and complete destruction. His leadership and military success solidified his reputation, earning him the cognomen "Africanus the Younger."

Manius Manilius

Manius Manilius was one of the initial consuls in charge of the Roman forces at the start of the Third Punic War. He co-led the Roman invasion of North Africa in 149 BCE and was involved in the early stages of the siege of Carthage. Manilius faced significant resistance and struggled to make substantial progress against the well-fortified Carthaginian defenses. His tenure highlighted the difficulties of siege warfare and the need for more effective leadership.


Gulussa was one of the sons of Masinissa, the King of Numidia, and an ally of Rome. Although not a general in the Roman army, Gulussa provided crucial support to the Roman forces by supplying Numidian cavalry and participating in various military operations against Carthage.


The Third Punic War was marked by the strategic and tactical prowess of leaders like Scipio Aemilianus, who played a pivotal role in the Roman victory. The determined and valiant efforts of Carthaginian commanders like Hasdrubal the Boetharch showcased the fierce resistance of Carthage despite overwhelming odds. The war’s outcome was heavily influenced by the leadership and decisions of these key figures, ultimately leading to the destruction of Carthage and the consolidation of Roman power in the Mediterranean.

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