But, as neither the Romans nor the Africans had brought with them
sufficient forces of their own, the war necessarily became on both
sides a struggle to gain partisans, which was decided rarely by solid
attachment, more usually by fear, money, or accident, and which, when
it seemed about to end, resolved itself into an endless series of
fortress-sieges and guerilla conflicts, whence it soon revived with
Armies appeared and disappeared like sandhills on the
seashore; on the spot where a hill stood yesterday, not a trace of
it remains today. In general the superiority was on the side of
the Romans, partly because they at first appeared in Spain as the
deliverers of the land from Phoenician despotism, partly because of
the fortunate selection of their leaders and of the stronger nucleus
of trustworthy troops which these brought along with them.
hardly possible, however, with the very imperfect and--in point of
chronology especially--very confused accounts which have been handed
down to us, to give a satisfactory view of a war so conducted.