Civilization Wiki

BackArrowGreen Back to Leaders (Civ6)

"I condemn anyone who would not lay down their life for Carthage."
Wikipedia has a page called:

Dido, also known as Elissa, was, according to ancient sources (most notably the Aeneid), the legendary first queen of Carthage, which she allegedly founded in 814 BC after fleeing the Phoenician city of Tyre when her husband Acerbas was murdered by her brother Pygmalion. She leads the Phoenicians in Civilization VI: Gathering Storm.

Phoenicia quickly establishes their empire along the choicest sections of coastline and then uses Dido's ability to move their capital to the best of the city sites they have discovered.


Queen Dido, mother of Carthage, all your life you faced great threats and overcame them through wit and cunning. Wherever waves break on the shore, there your cities shall rise. The seas are your roads, the far horizon is your destiny and your refuge.


Dido's unique agenda is Sicilian Wars. She wants to settle coastal cities and dislikes leaders who have many coastal cities.

Her leader ability is Founder of Carthage. It grants cities with a Cothon the unique Move Capital project, which moves the Phoenician Capital Capital to that city. She also gains +1 Trade Route Trade Route capacity after building the Government Plaza or any Government Plaza building and a 50% Production Production bonus towards District Districts in the city with the Government Plaza.

Detailed Approach[]

Phoenicia needs to get Biremes and embarked Settlers into play as early as possible. The combination of these two units allows Dido to quickly settle and protect an empire of interconnected coastal cities. As you settle this naval trading empire, choose a single continent for the permanent location of your capital and use a Cothon project to move it there. Ensuring that your cities on that continent cannot suffer any sort of pressures from other inland empires allows you to secure your settlements’ loyalty.


Dido is voiced by Julie Fainer. She speaks Phoenician with a modern Hebrew accent.


Codename Quote (English translation) Quote (Phoenician) Notes
Agenda-based Approval May prosperity come to your cities—the ones away from the coast. (lit. "Power will come to your city districts... [Stick to the mountains, Phoenicia requests the sea.](?)") יָבוֹא עוֹשֶר לְמָקוֹמכֹּם...הָרָחוֹקִים מִשַׂׂפָּת הָיוֹם

Yabōʾ ʿōšer lemaqōmkom...Harahōqīm missapat hayyom.

Agenda-based Disapproval We have no interest in the land—that is for you to claim—but the seas and the shores are Phoenician. (lit. "We don't want land - it's for you - the sea and [???] is for our people.") חֹפְצֶנוּ לֹא לָאָרץ' – הוּא לֶכֹּם – מַהָיוֹם וּשַפָּתוּ הוּא לֶעָמֵנוּ

Ḥopṣēnū lā laʾarṣ - hū lekom - mēhayyom u-šapatū hū leʿammēnū.

Attacked War? Are you a fool? Your cities will suffer the fate of Epirus and Saguntum. (lit. "War? Are you a fool? Your city districts will understand the destruction of Epirus Saguntum.") מָלְחוֹמָה⸮ הָכֵּסִילֶם אָנְטוּם⸮ מָקוֹמכֹּם יִדָעוּ חוּרבְּ כִּאָפִּירוּס סָגוּנטְ

Malḥoma? Hakkesilem ʾantum? Maqōmkom yidaʿū ḥurb kiʾEpirus Sagunt.

She says מָלְחוֹמָה (malḥoma) instead of מָלְחוֹמָת (malḥomat).
Declares War Now we have war between us. Look to the seas—already the horizon is crowded with the sails of my fleets. (lit. "There is war together(?). Look at the sea - moreover, (it's) full of my ships(?).") עָתוֹ מָלְחוֹמָה בִּתָבְכֵּינוֹ. הָבִּיטוּ בָּיוֹם – עָתוֹ הָאוּףּ מָלֵא בְּאוֹנִיוֹתָיי

ʿAtto malḥoma bitabkēnū. Habbiṭū bayyom - ʿatto haʾup maleʾ beʾoniyyatay.

Defeated Do not glory in your conquest. One day you may see your capital bathed in flame.(lit. "Don't be proud of (your) rule. One day, you'll [wonder where your city districts are / see your place on fire.]") אָל תִתְגַאָוְוּ בִינֶה שְחָקוֹם. בָּיוּם אַחָד תִירָאוּ מָקוֹמכֹּם הָכֹּל בָּאֶש

ʾAl titgaʾawū bine šᵉḥaqōm. Bayyūm ʾaḥad tiraʾū maqōmkom hakkol baʾeš.

Greeting I, Dido, queen and mother of Carthage, greet you on behalf of the Phoenicians. (lit. "I am Dido, the queen and the mother of Carthage. [???] Phoenicia.") אָנוּךּ דִידוֹ, הַמָלְכּוֹת וּהָאוּם לְקָרתְ'-חָדָש. מַקָדֶמֶה שוּם לֶכֹאן בִּישוּם קִין בָּנֵי כַּנָעָן

ʾAnūk Dīdō, hammalkot u-haʾum leQart-ḥadaš. Maqademe šum lekoʾn bišum qīn banay Kᵉnaʿan.

She says מַקָדֶמֶה (maqademe) instead of מַקָדֶמֶת (maqademet).
Quote from Civilopedia I condemn anyone who would not lay down their life for Carthage. (lit. "We condemn all who don't give up living for the name of Carthage.") אָנוּךּ דָנַה אִת כִּל מִי לֹא יוֹתֶן אִת חָיוּ לֶשוּם לְקָרתְ'-חָדָש

ʾAnūk danā ʾet kil mī lō yōten ʾet ḥayyū leššum Qart-ḥadaš.


Delegation: Accept these gifts of murex purple, Lebanon cedar, and olives—a mere taste of the wealth of Phoenicia.

Accepts Player's Delegation: Your delegation is welcome, and will find rest among us.

Rejects Player's Delegation: Phoenicia has no need of your delegation, for we already have the measure of your people.

Accepts Player's Declaration of Friendship: When two great people such as ours share such an accord, it is right to call them friends.

Rejects Player's Declaration of Friendship: You flatter yourself. Phoenicia recognizes the existence of your nation - but we do not recognize a mutual friendship.

Requests Declaration of Friendship: Come, gracious one, and declare to the world that you stand as Phoenicia's friend!

Player Accepts Declaration of Friendship: Yes, this I swear.

Denounced by Player: Your senators call for our destruction and you dare acclaim them as orators? You walk blind into your destruction.

Denounces Player: I pray you are sent into the fire for Moloch! I pray you be made an offering to Mot! I pray Yam rises and devours you!

Invitation to Capital: Tell me of the location of your capital, that our maps might be complete. I shall share our capital's location in exchange.

Invitation to City: Come and see the great Phoenician cities. Carry word of it back to your land, and to the rest of the world.

Civilopedia entry[]

Dido, also called Elissa, was the founder-queen of the city of Carthage. She founded the city after fleeing from an attempt on her life in her home city of Tyre. She appears both in the foundational myth of Carthage and in Virgil's Aeneid. It is likely she was a real, historical person, although many elements of her life were mythologized or fictionalized. They do make for a good story, though.

Records from around the 1st Century CE by Timaeus and Josephus both describe her as the sister of the Tyrian king Pygmalion. In a more detailed Roman story (which calls her Elissa), she was married to Acerbas, the chief priest of Hercules (but most likely the Phoenician god Melqart) and the second-most-powerful man in the city. Pygmalion wanted more power for himself and had Acerbas slain, and would have slain Dido, but she agreed to exile from the city.

Acerbas' temple had a large treasury, which passed to Dido. Dido knew that Pygmalion coveted the treasure, so she made a great show of sending container after container from the temple to the docks, then before departing Tyre, poured the contents of containers into the harbor in sight of Pygmalion's spies. Pygmalion assumed she had sacrificed the treasure, but Dido had in fact substituted sand in the containers and departed with her deceased husband's treasure safely hidden.

She wandered the Mediterranean for years afterwards, accompanied by her faithful retinue. She landed on Cyprus, where she added a group of desperate young women of the island to her band, who became wives for her soldiers.

The wanderers came to the North African coast, and there encountered a local king named Iarbas. Dido negotiated with Iarbas for permission to settle, saying she wanted “only as much land as an oxhide could cover.” Iarbas agreed. Dido ordered the cowhide sliced into a long, thin strips, and used the strips to encircle a hill near the coast. In honor of this bit of clever topology, the main hill of the city of Carthage became known as the Byrsa, which is a Greek word for oxhide.

There are two main accounts of her death. In the Aeneid, an anachronistic Aeneas stops in the newly-founded city of Carthage, and Dido falls madly in love with him, forgetting her vows to her deceased husband. Aeneas, reminded by Mercury of his destiny to found a great city of his own, departs suddenly, without bidding her farewell. Dido, heartbroken, realizing she has betrayed the memory of Acerbas, stabs herself with Aeneas' sword and swears unending enmity between Carthage and Aeneas' descendants. Aeneas sees her funeral pyre from the sea, and is briefly saddened by the turn of events, but then promptly goes back to the business of being a hero. This Roman account speaks volumes about Roman attitudes towards the Carthaginians, but maybe says less about Dido's history.

In the second account, King Iarbas demands Dido's hand in marriage from a Carthaginian delegation, and threatens the destruction of Carthage should she not comply. The delegates, knowing their queen's temper, cannot bring themselves to raise the issue to her, even despite the danger of war. One of their number phrases the situation delicately to her saying: “King Iarbas has requested the hand of one of our citizens in marriage, and says he will destroy the city if she does not accept.” To which Dido snaps: “Anyone who would not accept this marriage request, and so doom the city, should be put to death.”

When she realizes that the marriage proposal was extended to her, Dido agrees to the marriage, but says she must placate the spirit of Acerbas before marrying Iarbas. To this end, she constructs an immense pyre, and makes offerings, before slaying herself (and remaining loyal to Acerbas and outside of Iarbas' rule) rather than marrying Iarbas. Thus she remains faithful to her own word as queen, her own vows, and her own independence.

The chronology of Pygmalion's rule and the foundation of Carthage roughly support the story of Dido and her wanderings. Some archaeological evidence also supports her existence, although some scholars say these inscriptions are referring to the Phoenician goddess Tanit. If she did exist, and founded the city of Carthage while remaining independent and a ruler in her own right as in the myth, it would have been a remarkable achievement of the ancient world. Establishing the foundation of a mighty power from a humble start as refugees clinging to an unfriendly coast speaks volumes to her capability and guile as a ruler.


  • Dido is the only leader to have a voice artist reprise their role: Julie Fainer also voiced her in Civilization V: Gods & Kings.
  • Dido's diplomacy screen shows ships sailing alongside the Rock of Raouché, a natural landmark off the coast of Beirut, Lebanon.
  • Dido's leader ability references her status as the alleged founder of Carthage, while her leader agenda references the series of conflicts between Carthage and the Greek city-states over control of Sicily.
  • Historically, Dido worshiped the pagan gods of Phoenicia like Mot, Yam, and Moloch (all of whom she references in her denunciation), but her preferred religion is Judaism in-game. It was likely chosen because it is an organized religion (as are all those the leaders follow), and due to close (though not always friendly) relationships between Phoenicians and Jews.




Civilization VI- Gathering Storm - First Look- Phoenicia

First Look: Phoenicia

Related achievements[]

Queen of the Byrsa
Queen of the Byrsa
Win a game as Dido
Byrsa is where Dido hid after fleeing her home of Tyre.
Purple Reign
Purple Reign
As Dido, complete the Move Capital project on 4 different continents.
A reference to the album and song by Prince, and Phoenicia's name meaning 'land of purple'.

See also[]

External links[]

Civilization VI Leaders [edit]
Abraham Lincoln1Alexander1Amanitore1Ambiorix1Bà Triệu1Basil II1Catherine de Medici (Magnificence Catherine1) • Chandragupta R&F-OnlyCleopatra (Ptolemaic Cleopatra1) • Cyrus1Dido GS-OnlyEleanor of Aquitaine GS-OnlyElizabeth I1Frederick BarbarossaGandhiGenghis Khan R&F-OnlyGilgameshGitarja1GorgoHammurabi1Harald Hardrada (Varangian Harald Hardrada1) • Hojo TokimuneJadwiga1Jayavarman VII1João III1John Curtin1Julius Caesar1Kristina GS-OnlyKublai Khan1Kupe GS-OnlyLady Six Sky1Lautaro R&F-OnlyLudwig II1Mansa Musa GS-OnlyMatthias Corvinus GS-OnlyMenelik II1MontezumaMvemba a NzingaNader Shah1Nzinga Mbande1Pachacuti GS-OnlyPedro IIPericlesPeterPhilip IIPoundmaker R&F-OnlyQin Shi Huang (Unifier Qin Shi Huang1) • Ramses II1Robert the Bruce R&F-OnlySaladin (Sultan Saladin1) • Sejong1Seondeok R&F-OnlyShaka R&F-OnlySimón Bolívar1Suleiman GS-Only (Muhteşem Suleiman1) • Sundiata Keita1Tamar R&F-OnlyTeddy Roosevelt (Bull Moose Teddy1Rough Rider Teddy1) • Theodora1Tokugawa1TomyrisTrajanVictoria (Age of Steam Victoria1) • Wilfrid Laurier GS-OnlyWilhelmina R&F-OnlyWu Zetian1Yongle1
1 Requires DLC

R&F-Only Added in the Rise and Fall expansion pack.
GS-Only Added in the Gathering Storm expansion pack.