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For the Canadian mountain, see Mount Syphax. For the mythological figure, see Sufax. There is also a genus of fossil spiders Syphax (Thomisidae).
Sifaks El Madher.jpg

Syphax was a king of the ancient Numidian tribe Masaesyli of western Numidia during the last quarter of the 3rd century BC. His story is told in Livy's Ab Urbe Condita (written c. 27-25 BC).[1]

Biography[edit]

Tomb of Syphax in Batna (Algeria)

When in 218 BC, war broke out between Carthage and Rome, Syphax was initially sympathetic to the Romans. In 213 BC, he concluded an alliance with the Romans and they sent military advisers to help Syphax train his troops. He then attacked the eastern Numidians, the Massylians, ruled by King Gala; at that time allied to the Carthaginians. When Gala died in 206 BC, his sons Masinissa and Oezalces quarreled about the inheritance, and Syphax was able to conquer considerable parts of the eastern Numidian kingdom.

After the Roman general Publius Cornelius Scipio (Scipio Africanus) was victorious in the Battle of Ilipa (206 BC), he sent his friend Gaius Laelius to visit Syphax to ratify the treaty with Rome. Syphax however, refused to ratify any treaty except with Scipio, so Scipio sailed with two quinqueremes to meet with Syphax, taking a considerable risk in doing so. In fact he arrived at the Numidian harbor, at exactly the same time as Hasdrubal (who had fled from Spain) anchored there on his way back to Carthage. However, Scipio's ship managed to make harbor before Hasdrubal's seven triremes could make out to intercept them, and in a neutral harbor, Hasdrubal dared not act against the Romans. Syphax invited both to dinner, where both Syphax and Hasdrubal were taken in by Scipio's charm.[1]:p77

Meanwhile, Masinissa had concluded that Rome was winning the war against Carthage and therefore decided to switch sides. Having lost the alliance with Masinissa, Hasdrubal started to look for another ally, which he found in Syphax, sealing the alliance by offering his daughter Sophonisba in marriage, although until 206 BC she had been betrothed to Masinissa.

With the reversal of alliances it looked like Carthage and Syphax were in a strong position in Africa, certainly during the early stages of Scipio's campaign in North Africa, the joined forces of Syphax and Hasdrubal Gisco were able to force Scipio to abandon the siege of Utica. However, in the Battle of Bagbrades (203 BC), Scipio overcame Hasdrubal and Syphax and while the Roman general concentrated on Carthage, Laelius and Masinissa followed Syphax to Cirta.

During the pursuit, Syphax was threatened with desertion by his army when Laelius and Massinissa's army approached the Numidian battle line. In a brave attempt to rally his troops, Syphax rode alone, straight towards the Roman cavalry, but in this desperate attempt his badly wounded horse threw him off. Syphax was pounced upon immediately by Roman soldiers and taken to the ecstatic Massinissa.[1]:p405 Syphax's troops retreated to the capital city which later fell as Massinissa claimed his kingdom. Syphax was delivered to Scipio and was taken as a prisoner, dying in Tibur (modern Tivoli) in 203 or 202 BC.

In a twist of fate, Sophonisba then married Masinissa. However, Scipio, suspicious of Sophonisba, demanded that she be taken to Rome and appear in the triumphal parade. To spare her such humiliation, Masinissa sent her poison, with which she killed herself.

The Tunisian city Sfax is said to be named after King Syphax.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Livy: Ab urbe condita, vol. VIII, bks. xxviii-xxx Loeb Classical Edn, pp.73-99, 173-225, 405-421 at openlibrary.org

External links[edit]


Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Syphax — Please support Wikipedia.
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16444 news items

Jawhara FM

Business News
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 09:19:12 -0700

Le fondateur-dirigeant de la compagnie aérienne Syphax Airlines, Mohamed Frikha a affirmé au micro de Wassim Ben Larbi sur Express Fm, le 2 septembre 2015, que la compagnie est victime de lobbying et que pour sa part si l'expérience était à refaire il ...

Tunivisions.net

Tunivisions.net
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 08:00:00 -0700

En décidant aujourd'hui de revenir sur les problèmes de la compagnie aérienne privée Syphax Airlines, dont il est le fondateur et l'ex PDG, Mohamed Frikha, également député nahdhaoui à l'ARP, a tenté de faire taire les commérages et réduire l'effet ...
 
Radio Shems FM (Communiqué de presse)
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 12:41:15 -0700

Le secrétaire général adjoint du syndicat de base de Syphax Airlines, Sahbi Ben Gaied Hssine a assuré mardi, dans une déclaration à Shems FM, que les employés sont entrain d'organiser une protestation qui sera observée jeudi prochain devant le siège ...
 
Washington Post
Wed, 02 Sep 2015 14:22:30 -0700

18. Part of Arlington schools' REEP Program. Monday, Sept. 14 and 21 at 9 a.m. or 6 p.m. Syphax Education Center, 2110 Washington Blvd., Arlington. 703-228-4200. www.apsva.us/reep. Exam, free; course, $285; people who live and work in Arlington, $200.

NJ.com

NJ.com
Tue, 01 Sep 2015 17:11:15 -0700

City resident Tracey Syphax said the issue cannot be dragged out any longer. "I was hoping today that when I came here, it would be the end of it ... but unfortunately that doesn't look like it's going to happen," he said. "This needs to be put to rest ...

Air-Journal

Air-Journal
Wed, 26 Aug 2015 05:09:12 -0700

Compagnie tunisienne entièrement privée, lancée en 2011 dans la foulée du « printemps arabe » qui a chassé le Président Ben Ali, Syphax Airlines est aujourd'hui menacée de disparition. Elle a gelé tous ses vols vers et depuis la Tunisie depuis fin ...

Nawaat

Nawaat
Fri, 07 Aug 2015 12:15:26 -0700

Un groupe important parmi les salariés de la compagnie aérienne Syphax s'est rassemblé, aujourd'hui 7 août 2015, au sein du siège de ladite compagnie afin de discuter avec les dirigeants de l'entreprise. Les salariés en question exigeaient des ...

Business News

Business News
Thu, 20 Aug 2015 06:40:54 -0700

Le conseil du marché financier, gendarme de la Bourse tunisienne, a publié jeudi 20 août 2015 un communiqué dans lequel il indique avoir décidé d'obliger Mohamed Frikha, actionnaire majoritaire de Syphax, d'organiser une Offre publique de retrait et de ...
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