digplanet beta 1: Athena
Share digplanet:

Agriculture

Applied sciences

Arts

Belief

Business

Chronology

Culture

Education

Environment

Geography

Health

History

Humanities

Language

Law

Life

Mathematics

Nature

People

Politics

Science

Society

Technology

For the Renaissance painter Sofonisba Anguissola (c. 1532-1625), see Sofonisba Anguissola. For the American activist Sophonisba Breckinridge (1866-1948), see Sophonisba Breckinridge.
The Death of Sophonisba, by Giambattista Pittoni (1730s)

Sophonisba (also Sophonisbe, Sophoniba; in Punic, Saphanba'al) (fl. 203 BC) was a Carthaginian noblewoman who lived during the Second Punic War, and the daughter of Hasdrubal Gisco Gisgonis (son of Gisco). In an act that became legendary, Sophonisba poisoned herself rather than be humiliated in a Roman triumph.

Life[edit]

A celebrated beauty, Sophonisba had been betrothed to King Massinissa until 206. Massinissa was the leader of the Massylii (or eastern) Numidians. However, in 206, Massinissa allied himself to Rome and Hasdrubal, having lost this valuable alliance, started to look for another ally. He found one in Syphax, king of the Masaesyli (or western Numidians). As was normal in those days, Hasdrubal used his daughter to conclude the diplomatic alliances with Syphax, who had himself previously been allied to Rome.

Syphax was defeated and captured in 203 BC by Masinissa and Scipio Africanus in the Battle of the Great Plains at Bagradas. Masinissa fell in love with Sophonisba and married her. Scipio, however, refused to agree to this arrangement, insisting on the immediate surrender of the princess so that she could be taken to Rome and appear in the triumphal parade. Masinissa, upbraided by Scipio for his weakness, was urged to leave her.

Masinissa feared the Romans more than he loved Sophonisba. Thus, he went to Sophonisba and swore his love to her. He told her that he could not free her from captivity or shield her from Roman wrath, and so he asked her to die like a true Carthaginian princess. With great composure, she drank a cup of poison that he offered her.

Her story, probably much embellished, is told indirectly in Polybius (14.4ff.); and more concretely in Livy (30.12.11-15.11), Diodorus (27.7), Appian (Pun. 27-28), and Cassius Dio (Zonaras 9.11). Polybius, however, never refers to Sophonisba by name in his allusions to her marriage to Syphax, and in his extensive account of Laelius' maneuvers against Syphax. The historian had met Masinissa. Nevertheless, it has been proposed that Polybius' account provides the basis for the Sophonisba story.[1] When Polybius does refer to her, he uses the diminutive in a tone that may be less than flattering. In one passage, Polybius ridicules Syphax for being less courageous than his own "child bride".

In literature, art and film[edit]

Sophonisbe by Corneille, 1663

Petrarch elaborated her story in his epic poem Africa, published posthumously in 1396.

Sophonisba became the subject of tragedies (and later operas) from the 16th to the 19th centuries, and, along with the story of Cleopatra, furnished more dramas than any other. The first tragedy is credited to the Italian Galeotto Del Carretto (c. 1470–1530) which was written in 1502, but issued posthumously in 1546. The first to appear, however, was Gian Giorgio Trissino's play of 1515 which, "in codifying the forms of Italian classical tragedy, helped consign Del Carretto's Sofonisba to oblivion."[2] In France, Trissino's version was adapted by Mellin de Saint-Gelais (performed in 1556), and may have served as the primary model for versions by Antoine de Montchrestien (1596) and Nicolas de Montreux (1601). The tragedy by Jean Mairet (1634) is one of the first monuments of French "classicism", and was followed by a version from Pierre Corneille (1663).

The story of Sophonisba also served as subject for works by John Marston (1606), David Murray (1610), Nathaniel Lee (1676), Daniel Caspar von Lohenstein (1680), Henry Purcell (1685), Antonio Caldara (1708), Leonardo Leo (1718), Luca Antonio Predieri (1722), James Thomson (1729), Niccolò Jommelli (1746), Baldassare Galuppi (1747, 1764), Tommaso Traetta (1762), Antonio Boroni (it) (1764), Christopher Gluck (1765), Maria Teresa Agnesi (1765), Mattia Vento (it) (1766), François Joseph Lagrange-Chancel, revised by Voltaire (1770), Christian Gottlob Neefe (1776), António Leal Moreira (1783), Joseph Joaquín Mazuelo (1784), Vittorio Alfieri (1789), Pietro Alessandro Guglielmi (1802), Marcos Portugal (1803), Ferdinando Paer (1805), Vincenzo Federici (1805), Luigi Petrali (1844), Emanuel Geibel (1869), Jeronim de Rada (1892), Giuseppe Brunati (it) (1904), Dimitrie Cuclin (1945), Vasco Graça Moura (1993), and others.

Sophonisba also appears in film, first in Giovanni Pastrone's 1914 silent film Cabiria and again in Carmine Gallone's 1937 epic movie Scipio Africanus: The Defeat of Hannibal.

Some years after writing a play called The Tragedy of Sophonisba, the aforementioned James Thomson authored the still-current patriotic British song "Rule, Britannia!"; Sophonisba's proud defiance and refusal to submit to slavery might have inspired that song's famous refrain "Britons never, never will be slaves!".[original research?]

In the 1922 heroic high fantasy novel The Worm Ouroboros by E. R. Eddison, there is a character named "Queen Sophonisba", though her role in the book has little in common with the historic Sophonisba.

Gallery[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Sophonisbe[dead link]
  2. ^ Abstract of the article “Galeotto Del Carretto’s ‘Sofonisba’” by Lovaniano Rossi, in Levia Gravia (2000). Universities of Turin and of Piemonte Orientale.

References[edit]

Livy, Ad urbe condita libri xxix.23, xxx.8, 12-15.8

External links[edit]


Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sophonisba — Please support Wikipedia.
This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia. A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia.
131 videos foundNext > 

Sammi Davis discusses her character, Sophonisba, for The Double Born

Sammi Davis discusses her character, Sophonisba, for The Double Born directed by Tony Randel.

Purcell: Z 590/1. Beneath the poplar's shadow (Sophonisba) - Nelson (Hogwood)

Playlist (Incidental Music): http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=97CDDB2CC3E0CB84 Sophonisba, or, Hannibal's Overthrow, Z 590 Tragedy in five acts Text: ...

Sophonisba, Z.590: Beneath a poplar's shadow

Sophonisba, Z.590: Beneath a poplar's shadow Nancy Argenta/Nigel North/Richard Boothby ℗ 1994 The copyright in this sound recording is owned by EMI Records L...

Carthage Resort - Sophonisba - www.carthageresort.com

A Scandinavian resort between golf and sea in Gammarth Tunis www.carthageresort.com.

Beneath the poplar's shadow (from Sophonisba or Hannibal's Overthrow) Z5901

Beneath the poplar's shadow (from Sophonisba or Hannibal's Overthrow) Z5901 Susan Rode Morris ℗ 2012 Susan Rode Morris. Distributed by Magnatune.com Released...

Purcell: Sophonisba or Hannibal's Overthrow - original version, 1685 - Beneath the poplar's shadow

Beneath the poplar's shadow Judith Nelson Christopher Hogwood The Academy of Ancient Music ℗ 1985 Decca Music Group Limited Author: Lee Nathaniel Composer: P...

Illinois in the Gilded Age, 1866-1896: Women's Experience and Gender Roles

This video concerning the topic of women's experience and gender roles, comes from the "Illinois in the Gilded Age, 1866-1896" website, which is a creation o...

A House to Let (FULL Audiobook) by Charles Dickens - part 1/2

A House to Let audiobook by Charles Dickens (1812 -- 1870), Wilkie Collins (1824 -- 1889), Elizabeth Gaskell (1810 -- 1865), Adelaide Anne Procter (1825 -- 1...

Rule, Britannia! rule the waves: Britons never will be slaves.

Please click here for video with FULL poem text on screen http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s0tOndB7IoE&feature=youtu.be "Rule, Britannia!" is a British patriot...

Preliminary announcement

Mainland The three major continents make a tour. It begins from here. Nautilus City Sophonisba SIM. comeing soon!!

131 videos foundNext > 

76 news items

 
The Guardian
Tue, 28 Oct 2014 17:04:25 -0700

Labour now recognises that immigration can have a negative effect on British workers, a shadow minister has said. 12 Aug 2013 193 comments · Martin Rowson on Labour's immigration policy - cartoon ...

The Guardian

The Guardian
Thu, 30 Oct 2014 13:53:15 -0700

Middle-class parents who choose state schools for their kids shouldn't be so smug. It does little for equality. Private schools excel only in privilege · meritocracy scchol hynes. 'I have never bought into the idea that our state education benefits all ...

The Guardian

The Guardian
Thu, 23 Oct 2014 06:47:50 -0700

National service recruits in 1953. Norman Tebbit 'would see their spirits square-bashed out of them by toil that isn't meant to improve one's character but to break one'. Photograph: CPL/1953-282/Popperfoto.com. Thursday 23 October 2014 09.47 EDT.

The Guardian

The Guardian
Fri, 14 Nov 2014 22:00:52 -0800

Let's face it, in recent months it has sometimes felt as if the Labour party is being led by a man rocking the political boat so gently that nobody outside Westminster has noticed that he has even got a boat. And now his friends inside Westminster are ...

The Guardian

The Guardian
Sat, 04 Oct 2014 14:00:59 -0700

'The government has lost sight of what really matters in education: quality of teaching and strength of leadership': David Cameron at the Conservative party conference, 1 October 2014. Photograph: Oli Scarff/Getty Images. Saturday 4 October 2014 17.00 EDT.
 
The Guardian
Thu, 06 Nov 2014 15:21:37 -0800

sophonisba TheBorderGuard. 7 Nov 2014 1:37. 46 47. As I recall UKIP was going to win in the South Yorkshire police commissioner election. Newsflash, they didn't. UKIP takes Tory votes and current polling evidence shows that the Tories will lose 44 ...

The Guardian

The Guardian
Wed, 08 Oct 2014 03:10:09 -0700

Well done to the Lib Dem leader for pledging £120m to cut waiting times. It's just a shame the coalition he's part of has taken an axe to mental health services. Nick Clegg: 'There is a caveat … support for mental health has been going backwards under ...
 
The Guardian
Thu, 04 Sep 2014 11:07:27 -0700

'Brooks Newmark is plainly a stranger to the many civic virtues of a hobby with a long and important history in folk art and custom.' Photograph: Jamie Grill/Getty. Thursday 4 September 2014 14.06 EDT. Share on Facebook · Share on Twitter · Share via ...
Loading

Oops, we seem to be having trouble contacting Twitter

Support Wikipedia

A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia. Please add your support for Wikipedia!

Searchlight Group

Digplanet also receives support from Searchlight Group. Visit Searchlight