Cannae (kănˈē) [key], ancient village, Apulia, SE Italy, scene in 216 B.C. of Hannibal's crushing defeat of the Romans. Hannibal's troops assumed a crescent-shaped formation to meet the Roman troops, which were especially concentrated in the center. As the Romans advanced, Hannibal by brilliant strategy managed to encircle the entire Roman force and cut it to pieces.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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