Carthage is one of the most famous ancient cities and one of the many treasures of the ancient civilization on the ground of North Africa. It is located near the Tunisian capital Tunis, and in 1979 is included in the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites.
"The Jewel of the Mediterranean" was built by the Phoenician merchants from Tyre, 814 BC. Carthage is quickly became the ruler of the Mediterranean. Its traders were coming to the farthest parts of the ancient world. All this has made the city one of the richest and most developed in the basin of the Mediterranean Sea. Carthage successes have led to conflict with the Greeks, and with the Romans. The wars of Carthage and Rome were held in three stages. In the history , these conflicts remained known as the Punic Wars, according to the name Punicus , which the Romans gave to the Carthaginians.
Carthage in the Second Punic War gave one of the greatest generals in the history of warfare, Hannibal, who until the end of his life never stopped making plans to demolish Rome. The Third Punic War was decisive for the fate of the city. Roman troops landed on the coast of North Africa 149 BC. After that, the Romans approached the siege of Carthage, which lasted two years. 146 BC defense has fallen, but the fighting went on for another six days. Brave defenders fought literally for every street and every house. When they finally took Carthage, the Romans burnt it down. According to tradition, Carthage is on the fire for seventeen days and nights, during which disappeared all traces of this great civilization. After that, the Romans plowed the area where the city is located, sprinkle it with salt and put a curse, so there would never again be raised a new city. Despite the curse, the city was again founded by the Romans themselves. In the same place where there was the first, Julius Caesar built a new Carthage. Over time, Carthage became second most important city of the western part of the Roman Empire. New Carthage was called "the granary of the Empire." After the fall of the Roman Empire Carthage is on several occasions conquered. Cartagena encourage some of the most important early Christian theologians and scholars. The ruins of Carthage were discovered in the second half of the twentieth century, during construction work at the palace of President Habib Bourguiba.
Carthage had two artificial harbors, one was used for merchant ships. In the second port, known as Cotton, were situated warships. Cotton was circular in shape, and its contours are still visible today. In this port was not allowed to enter any stranger. She was surrounded by massive walls, and was considered as one of the Wonders of the ancient world. The city was surrounded by walls 37 kilometers long, and most of the walls was on the coast. The city was composed of numerous buildings, particularly is significant large library, which was burned down during the Roman conquest. In the center of Carthage was a citadel known as Birsa, and its remains are visible today. Carthage before the fall had about 500 000 inhabitants. From Carthage are preserved only ruins and foundations that follow her contours.
This, once one of the most developed cities in the world, today is a very important attraction on the tourist map of Tunisia. This city is besieged visitors from all over the world, to be able to admire this ancient metropolis. Carthage did not survive the destruction, but the spirit of this city forever remained in the foundations of human civilization. Carthage keeps its uniqueness, and it would be a shame not to visit during the arrival in Tunisia.