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MAGO

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V17, Page 393 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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MAGO, the name of several Carthaginians. (1) The reputed founder of the military power of Carthage, fl. 550—500 B.C. (Justin xviii. 7, xix. 1). (2) The youngest of the three sons of Hamilcar Barca. He accompanied Hannibal into Italy, and held important commands in the great victories of the first three years. After the battle of Cannae (216 B.C.) he sailed to Carthage to report the successes gained. He was about to return to Italy with strong reinforcements for Hannibal, when the government ordered him to go to the aid of his other brother, Hasdrubal, who was hard pressed in Spain. He carried on the war there with varying success in concert with the two Hasdrubals until, in 209, his brother marched into Italy to help Hannibal. Mago remained in Spain with Hasdrubal, the son of Gisco. In 207 he was defeated by M. Junius Silanus, and in 206 the combined forces of Mago and Hasdrubal were scattered by Scipio Africanus in the decisive battle of Silpia. Mago maintained himself for some time in Gades, but afterwards received orders to carry the war into Liguria. He wintered in the Balearic Isles, where the harbour Portus Magonis (Port Mahon) still bears his name. Early in 204 he landed in Liguria, where he maintained a desultory warfare till in 203 he was defeated in Cisalpine Gaul by the Roman forces. Shortly afterwards he was ordered to return to Carthage, but on the voyage home he died of wounds received in battle. See Polybius iii.; Livy xxi.—xxiii.; xxviii., chs. 23—37; xxix., xxx. ; Appian, Hispanics, 25–37; T. Friedrich, Biographie des Barkiden Mago; H. Lehmann, Der Angriff der drei Barkiden auf Italien (Leipzig, 1905); and further J. P. Mahaffy, in Hermathena, vii. 29—36 (1890). (3) The name of Mago is also attached to a great work on agriculture which was brought to Rome and translated by order of the senate after the destruction of Carthage. The book was regarded as a standard authority, and is often referred to by later writers. See Pliny, Nat. Hist. xviii. 5; Columella, i. 1; Cicero, De oratore, i. 58.
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