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Tiresias: The Ancient Mediterranean Religions Source Database

Plutarch, Virtues Of Women, 10

nanWhen Hannibal, the son of Barea, before Probably about 220 b.c. Cf. Polybius, iii. 14 and Livy, xxi. 5. making his campaign against the Romans, attacked a great city in Spain, Salmantica, at first the besieged were terrified, and agreed to do what was ordered by giving him six thousand pounds and three hundred hostages. But when he raised the siege, they changed their minds and did nothing of what they had agreed to do. So he returned and ordered his soldiers, with the promise of plunder, to attack the city. At this the barbarians were panic-stricken, and carne to terms, agreeing that the free inhabitants should depart clad in one civilian garment, and should leave behind weapons, property, slaves, and their city. The women, thinking that the enemy would search each man as he came out, but would not touch the women, took swords, and, hiding them, hastened out with the men. When all had come out, Hannibal set over them a guard of Masaesylian soldiers in a place near the city, and kept them there under constraint. The rest of the soldiers rushed into the city in disorder and set to plundering. As much booty was being carried off, the Masaesylians could not bear to be merely spectators, nor did they keep their mind on their watching, but were much aggrieved and started to move away as if to have their share of the spoils. At this juncture the women, calling upon the men, handed them the swords, and some of the women of themselves attacked their guards. One of them snatched away the spear of Banon the interpreter, and smote the man himself; but he happened to have on his breast-plate. Of the others, the men struck down some, routed the rest, and forced a way out in a body, accompanied by the women. Hannibal, learning of this, sent in pursuit of them, and caught those who could not keep up. The others gained the mountains, and, for the time, escaped. Afterwards, however, they sent a petition to him, and were restored to their city, and received immunity and humane treatment.

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