The Onia Merube'et is a very powerful warship, inferior only to mighty Onia Me'humeset and some of the rarer, larger ships.
Great Shofet! We are the greatest sailors under the Sun! Our merchants, with the blessing of Baal- Hammon and Melquart sail on every sea and trade in every port. Now our enemies threaten our peaceful citizens and trade routes. Pirates are gathering new fleets. In your wisdom consider spending a little more gold on our mighty navy. The "4" is a true achievement of our shipwrights and with our sailors and oarsmen on board, fleets of these ships will be like an open grave for our enemies!
Carthaginians had a long tradition with the sea, dating back to the time of their Phoenician ancestors, that helped them colonize and forge an empire across the Western Mediterranean. The empires of Assyria and Persia recruited navies from Phoenician cities such as Tyre and this tradition of great warships and sailors continued in the Western Mediterranean through Carthage.
Although the Onia Merube'et or Tetrere made up the bulk of many Carthaginian and Hellenistic fleets, its design is still uncertain. The most probable reconstruction states that it has two rows of oars manned by two oarsmen each. The biggest Athenian docks measured 37x6 metres, which suggests that this was the size of the "4" and "5" - the biggest ships we know Athens had. If this is true, the crew of a Onia Merube'et would consist of 232 men operating 116 oars. Some iconography suggests the Onia Merube'et was completely boxed-in, with a full deck and covered sides. Also being two-rowed, this ship doesn't require outriggers. On longer voyages, if the wind blew from behind then sails were used (main on the central mast and another on the small mast at the ship's bow). The ship was armed with a ram, has a boarding crew of somewhere below 40, and was capable of carrying an additional 60-80 men. Later some were armed with catapults or ballistae.
These galleys were normally manned by citizen rowers, and the Carthaginians found more prestige in serving in their navy than in the army. Altough the number of crew available, the size of the harbours, and the competition with a large merchant fleet may have limited the size of the navy.