Trebia. 218 BC

by Daniel Russ on January 20, 2020



Trebia was the first major set piece battle between the Carthaginians and the Romans during the second Punic war. This was all out war by a competent and powerful foreign army inside Rome that the Romans couldn’t extract from their country for there years

The Carthaginians had 38000 men and the Romans under Scipio Sempronious had 40,000


The Carthaginians deployed 10,000 cavalry, the Romans had 4000.

The Carthaginians brought 20,000 heavy armored infantry and the romans had like 360000 various Allied infantries

The Trebia River was 4 feet deep and here it was not a really significant geographical feature in regards to the battle.

Both sides were looking at each other, Hannibal on the west side of the river and Scipio on the east. Hannibal reconnoitered a dry grassy gulley on the west side of the river and to the south. Overnight he secreted 1000 infantry and 1000 cavalry into the area and told them to remain quiet.

Hannibal sent all his remaining Cavalry across the Trebia to attack the Romans at dawn.

While the Romans were frantically waking top troops and getting them into for nation, the Cathaginians then fled back across the Trebia. Roman Cavalry pursued Hannibal’s cavalry and they were led around in circles.

Finally romans came west cross the t Reba in formation.

Hannibal puts his African infantry on the right with some cavalry, the Spanish heavy infantry on his left and finally Gallic Infantry in the middle.

Roman heavy infantry in the center and the Italian allies on the right. The Roman center pushed Hannibals Gallic center back past the battlefield. They cut their way completely through the Gauls and then without further orders, the continued until they disappeared off the field of battle. The Roman heavy infantry was suddenly captured in a double envelopment when the two thousand soldiers emerged from the grassy gulley and attacked the roman rear.

The Roman army lost the integrity of their lines and 30,000 men were killed and theCarthaginians lost 5000 Gallic troops.

What remained of the Roman forces ran back across the Trebia River and lived fight another day.


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