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  • 1 Università Cattolica Péter Pázmány Gábor Hamvas (Studente post-laurea) Istituto di Filologia Classica H-2087 Piliscsaba Egyetem u. 1 Ungheria
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Silius Italicus in the third book of the Punica describes the temple of Melqart in Gades where Hannibal offers up a sacrifice to the god. The temple is presented as a sanctuary of Hercules because it corresponds better to the characterization of Hannibal and his irreverence for the gods is more evident. Silius is the only one to mention the labours of Hercules depicted on the doors of the temple. As the description of these pictures cannot be found in any other authors it is most likely that those are the invention of Silius’ fantasy and the ekphrasis (as the other ones in the poem) has a literary function: to foreshadow Hannibal’s destiny.