What kind of government did Carthage have?

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What kind of government did Carthage have?

No original Carthaginian writings on the subject survived the destruction of Carthage by the Romans, so whatever we think we know about Carthage comes from Greek and Roman sources. This said, here’s a summary.

Carthage was ruled by Suffets (judges). Two judges were elected annually for life, so a large group of judges, which had both legislative and judicial powers, existed at all times. There was a part of the judges’ corps called the Hundred and Four that existed solely to oversee the armed forces and judge generals. Polybius mentions a Carthaginian Senate and the fact that generals reported to it, so it is possible he was referring to the Hundred and Four.

Both Eratosthenes and Aristotle mention the Carthaginian constitution.

At this time, it is not known how restrictive Carthaginian electoral law was. Considerable difference of opinion exists on the subject. It is also possible that the definition of eligible voter changed over time.

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