The Prince


Niccolò Machiavelli

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The commander of the army of Carthage, an enemy of Rome. Hannibal invaded the Roman Republic during the Second Punic War (218-201 B.C.), marching into Italy through the Iberian Peninsula and the Alps. Although Hannibal failed to conquer Rome and suffered defeat in Africa, Machiavelli praises Hannibal for the "virtue" of "cruelty," which he used to maintain control of his army.
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Hannibal Character Timeline in The Prince

The timeline below shows where the character Hannibal appears in The Prince. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 17
Laws and Arms Theme Icon
Fortune and Prowess Theme Icon
Virtue vs. Vice Theme Icon
...cruelty," since harshness will keep the army "united and disciplined." Machiavelli applauds the ancient commander Hannibal for his skilled use of cruelty in order to preserve his massive and diverse army.... (full context)