history of alexander the great

This led Hegesias of Magnesia to say that it had burnt down because Artemis was away, attending the birth of Alexander. [118] Alexander was impressed by Porus' bravery, and made him an ally. Instead, they supported Alexander's half-brother Philip Arrhidaeus. The army was accompanied by surveyors, engineers, architects, scientists, court officials, and historians; from the outset Alexander seems to have envisaged an unlimited operation. [12] During Philip's absence, the Thracian Maedi revolted against Macedonia. This would fit with the intended destination of Alexander's funeral cortege. [73] He offered a peace treaty that included the lands he had already lost, and a ransom of 10,000 talents for his family. Alexander III of Macedon (Greek: Αλέξανδρος Γʹ ὁ Μακεδών, Aléxandros III ho Makedȏn; 20/21 July 356 BC – 10/11 June 323 BC), commonly known as Alexander the Great (Greek: ὁ Μέγας, ho Mégas), was a king (basileus) of the ancient Greek kingdom of Macedon[a] and a member of the Argead dynasty. [16] Contemporaries who wrote accounts of his life included Alexander's campaign historian Callisthenes; Alexander's generals Ptolemy and Nearchus; Aristobulus, a junior officer on the campaigns; and Onesicritus, Alexander's chief helmsman. [67][f] He showed his intent to conquer the entirety of the Persian Empire by throwing a spear into Asian soil and saying he accepted Asia as a gift from the gods. Pliny the Elder, The Natural History, 5.31. [247], The core of the Hellenistic culture promulgated by the conquests was essentially Athenian. It took Alexander until the autumn of 328 to crush the most determined opponent he encountered in his campaigns. His advance through Swāt and Gandhāra was marked by the storming of the almost impregnable pinnacle of Aornos, the modern Pir-Sar, a few miles west of the Indus and north of the Buner River, an impressive feat of siegecraft. He overcame this by being personally involved in battle,[89] in the manner of a Macedonian king. [161][162] According to Aelian, a seer called Aristander foretold that the land where Alexander was laid to rest "would be happy and unvanquishable forever". The Macedonians quickly begged forgiveness, which Alexander accepted, and held a great banquet for several thousand of his men at which he and they ate together. For other uses, see. From his accession Alexander had set his mind on the Persian expedition. [42], In the following year, the Persian satrap (governor) of Caria, Pixodarus, offered his eldest daughter to Alexander's half-brother, Philip Arrhidaeus. While the siege of Tyre was in progress, Darius sent a new offer: he would pay a huge ransom of 10,000 talents for his family and cede all his lands west of the Euphrates. The greatest conqueror in history, he is still only thirty-two. [59] This was due to use of terrain, phalanx and cavalry tactics, bold strategy, and the fierce loyalty of his troops. [33] At Corinth, Philip established a "Hellenic Alliance" (modelled on the old anti-Persian alliance of the Greco-Persian Wars), which included most Greek city-states except Sparta. [75][76] The men of military age were massacred and the women and children sold into slavery. The successor states that emerged were, at least initially, dominant forces, and these 300 years are often referred to as the Hellenistic period. During this turmoil, the Illyrians invaded Macedonia, only to be repelled by Alexander. This empire was called Macedonia, and when Alexander grew up, he inherited control of it. [20], During his youth, Alexander was also acquainted with Persian exiles at the Macedonian court, who received the protection of Philip II for several years as they opposed Artaxerxes III. During his youth, Alexander was tutored by Aristotle until age 16. When Onesicritus read this passage to his patron, Alexander's general and later King Lysimachus reportedly quipped, "I wonder where I was at the time. [14] Such legends may have emerged when Alexander was king, and possibly at his instigation, to show that he was superhuman and destined for greatness from conception. Ptolemy was appointed as satrap of Egypt in 323 BCE, by Perdiccas during the succession crisis that erupted following Alexander the Great. On the Hyphasis he erected 12 altars to the 12 Olympian gods, and on the Hydaspes he built a fleet of 800 to 1,000 ships. Later in his childhood, Alexander was tutored by the strict Leonidas, a relative of his mother, and by Lysimachus of Acarnania. Writing shortly after Alexander's death, another participant, Onesicritus, invented a tryst between Alexander and Thalestris, queen of the mythical Amazons. Alexander III of Macedon (Greek: Αλέξανδρος Γʹ ὁ Μακεδών, Aléxandros III ho Makedȏn; 20/21 July 356 BC – 10/11 June 323 BC), commonly known as Alexander the Great (Greek: ὁ Μέγας, ho Mégas), was a king (basileus) of the ancient Greek kingdom of Macedon and a member of the Argead dynasty. In autumn 324 Hephaestion died in Ecbatana, and Alexander indulged in extravagant mourning for his closest friend; he was given a royal funeral in Babylon with a pyre costing 10,000 talents. The Phoenician cities Marathus and Aradus came over quietly, and Parmenio was sent ahead to secure Damascus and its rich booty, including Darius’s war chest. After this, details on the fate of the tomb are hazy.[165]. [86], From Babylon, Alexander went to Susa, one of the Achaemenid capitals, and captured its treasury. Please select which sections you would like to print: Corrections? However, the infantry, under the command of Meleager, rejected this arrangement since they had been excluded from the discussion. In winter 334–333 Alexander conquered western Asia Minor, subduing the hill tribes of Lycia and Pisidia, and in spring 333 he advanced along the coastal road to Perga, passing the cliffs of Mount Climax, thanks to a fortunate change of wind. Alexander became legendary as a classical hero in the mould of Achilles, and he features prominently in the history and mythic traditions of both Greek and non-Greek cultures. He had come to envisage a joint ruling people consisting of Macedonians and Persians, and this served to augment the misunderstanding that now arose between him and his people. [260], On the other hand, some Roman writers, particularly Republican figures, used Alexander as a cautionary tale of how autocratic tendencies can be kept in check by republican values. Diodorus, Plutarch, Arrian and Justin all mentioned the theory that Alexander was poisoned. At Susa Alexander held a feast to celebrate the seizure of the Persian empire, at which, in furtherance of his policy of fusing Macedonians and Persians into one master race, he and 80 of his officers took Persian wives; he and Hephaestion married Darius’s daughters Barsine (also called Stateira) and Drypetis, respectively, and 10,000 of his soldiers with native wives were given generous dowries. He then continued south towards the Peloponnese. They refused to be sent away and criticized his adoption of Persian customs and dress and the introduction of Persian officers and soldiers into Macedonian units. Even Callisthenes, historian and nephew of Aristotle, whose ostentatious flattery had perhaps encouraged Alexander to see himself in the role of a god, refused to abase himself. [125] This river thus marks the easternmost extent of Alexander's conquests. Macedon was an Ancient Greek polity. [16] Of these, Arrian is generally considered the most reliable, given that he used Ptolemy and Aristobulus as his sources, closely followed by Diodorus. After taking Byblos (modern Jubayl) and Sidon (Arabic Ṣaydā), he met with a check at Tyre, where he was refused entry into the island city. Some parts of Caria held out, however, until 332. [37] The marriage made Alexander's position as heir less secure, since any son of Cleopatra Eurydice would be a fully Macedonian heir, while Alexander was only half-Macedonian. [106], In 334 BC, Alexander the Great donated funds for the completion of the new temple of Athena Polias in Priene, in modern-day western Turkey. About The History of Alexander The essential history of Alexander the Great, compelling and brilliantly realized Alexander the Great (356-323 BC), who led the Macedonian army to victory in Egypt, Syria, Persia and India, was perhaps the most successful conqueror the world has ever seen. [278] His defeat of Darius was depicted as Egypt's salvation, "proving" Egypt was still ruled by an Egyptian. [181] Craterus started to carry out Alexander's commands, but the successors chose not to further implement them, on the grounds they were impractical and extravagant. ), better known as Alexander the Great, is one of the most attractive historical figures to study not only ancient history but history in general. Many of these students would become his friends and future generals, and are often known as the 'Companions'. [246] Alexander sought to insert Greek elements into Persian culture and attempted to hybridize Greek and Persian culture. [86] He sent the bulk of his army to the Persian ceremonial capital of Persepolis via the Persian Royal Road. After a long pause due to an illness, he marched on towards Syria. He also accepted the surrender of Darius’s Greek mercenaries. In the first authoritative biography of Alexander the Great written for a general audience in a generation, classicist and historian Philip Freeman tells the remarkable life of the great conqueror. While he could be ruthless and impulsive, Alexander was also charismatic and sensible. The anguish that Alexander felt after Hephaestion's death may also have contributed to his declining health. [43], In summer 336 BC, while at Aegae attending the wedding of his daughter Cleopatra to Olympias's brother, Alexander I of Epirus, Philip was assassinated by the captain of his bodyguards, Pausanias. “I would accept,” Parmenio is reported to have said, “were I Alexander”; “I too,” was the famous retort, “were I Parmenio.” The storming of Tyre in July 332 was Alexander’s greatest military achievement; it was attended with great carnage and the sale of the women and children into slavery. This is the currently selected item. Alexander thus underlined his Panhellenic policy, already symbolized in the sending of 300 panoplies (sets of armour) taken at the Granicus as an offering dedicated to Athena at Athens by “Alexander son of Philip and the Greeks (except the Spartans) from the barbarians who inhabit Asia.” (This formula, cited by the Greek historian Arrian in his history of Alexander’s campaigns, is noteworthy for its omission of any reference to Macedonia.) One Greek king, Menander I, probably became Buddhist, and was immortalized in Buddhist literature as 'Milinda'. Taking almost 2 years to accomplish it, Alexander's army marched from Kabul to the Beas (Hyphasis, on the rivers of … He also displayed a deep interest in learning and encouraged the spread of Hellenistic culture. [272] The colloquial form of his name in modern Greek ("O Megalexandros") is a household name, and he is the only ancient hero to appear in the Karagiozis shadow play. He was undefeated in battle and became the measure against which military leaders compared themselves. Alexander's will called for military expansion into the southern and western Mediterranean, monumental constructions, and the intermixing of Eastern and Western populations. [147][149] There was even a suggestion that Aristotle may have participated. [190] His intelligent and rational side was amply demonstrated by his ability and success as a general. Left in charge of Macedonia in 340 during Philip’s attack on Byzantium, Alexander defeated the Maedi, a Thracian people. Alexander replied that since he was now king of Asia, it was he alone who decided territorial divisions. In summer 324 Alexander attempted to solve another problem, that of the wandering mercenaries, of whom there were thousands in Asia and Greece, many of them political exiles from their own cities. [254][256][257] The Yavanajataka (lit. His empire spread from Gibraltar to the Punjab, and he made Greek the lingua franca of his world, the language that helped spread early Christianity. [144] Another theory is that his successors wilfully or erroneously misheard "tôi Kraterôi"—"to Craterus", the general leading his Macedonian troops home and newly entrusted with the regency of Macedonia. The provinces became independent kingdoms, and the generals, following Antigonus’s lead in 306, took the title of king. Greek astronomical treatise) and Paulisa Siddhanta texts depict the influence of Greek astronomical ideas on Indian astronomy. [16], This article is about the ancient king of Macedonia. [78] After three unsuccessful assaults, the stronghold fell, but not before Alexander had received a serious shoulder wound. [105] This behaviour cost him the sympathies of many of his countrymen. [268] His court historian Callisthenes portrayed the sea in Cilicia as drawing back from him in proskynesis. The horse refused to be mounted, and Philip ordered it away. He murdered Cleitus, one of his most-trusted commanders, in a drunken quarrel, but his excessive display of remorse led the army to pass a decree convicting Cleitus posthumously of treason. After visiting Ilium (Troy), a romantic gesture inspired by Homer, he confronted his first Persian army, led by three satraps, at the Granicus (modern Kocabaş) River, near the Sea of Marmara (May/June 334). [48] Alexander's relationship with his father forged the competitive side of his personality; he had a need to outdo his father, illustrated by his reckless behaviour in battle. At which Alexander reproachfully insulted over him: "See there," said he, "the man who makes preparations to pass out of Europe into Asia, overturned in passing from one seat to another. Moreover, he needed the wealth of Persia if he was to maintain the army built by Philip and pay off the 500 talents he owed. He spent the winter organizing Egypt, where he employed Egyptian governors, keeping the army under a separate Macedonian command. [263] In addition, Pliny the Elder writes about this unsuccessful plan adding that the distance was 12 kilometres (7 1⁄2 mi), and the purpose was to cut a canal through the isthmus, so as to connect the Caystrian and Hermaean bays. He was inspiration for later conquerors such as Hannibal the Carthaginian, the Romans Pompey and Caesar, and Napoleon. Alexander founded a series of new cities, all called Alexandria, including modern Kandahar in Afghanistan, and Alexandria Eschate ("The Furthest") in modern Tajikistan. His vast empire stretched east into India. [113] However, Alexander's constant demands for troops and the migration of Macedonians throughout his empire depleted Macedon's strength, greatly weakening it in the years after Alexander, and ultimately led to its subjugation by Rome after the Third Macedonian War (171–168 BC).[16]. The elephant had gold rings around its tusks and an inscription was on them written in Greek: "Alexander the son of Zeus dedicates Ajax to the Helios" (ΑΛΕΞΑΝΔΡΟΣ Ο ΔΙΟΣ ΤΟΝ ΑΙΑΝΤΑ ΤΩΙ ΗΛΙΩΙ). [279], In Hindi and Urdu, the name "Sikandar", derived from the Persian name for Alexander, denotes a rising young talent, and the Delhi Sultanate ruler Aladdin Khajli stylized himself as "Sikandar-i-Sani" (the Second Alexander the Great). Macedon is too small for you", and bought the horse for him. However, its after-effects shook the Jewish world to its roots. Craterus, a high-ranking officer, already had been sent off with the baggage and siege train, the elephants, and the sick and wounded, together with three battalions of the phalanx, by way of the Mulla Pass, Quetta, and Kandahar into the Helmand Valley; from there he was to march through Drangiana to rejoin the main army on the Amanis (modern Minab) River in Carmania. [157], Alexander's body was laid in a gold anthropoid sarcophagus that was filled with honey, which was in turn placed in a gold casket. [80] He was pronounced son of the deity Amun at the Oracle of Siwa Oasis in the Libyan desert. [137] During his visit to Pasargadae Alexander ordered his architect Aristobulus to decorate the interior of the sepulchral chamber of Cyrus' tomb. Alexander's settlement of Greek colonists and the resulting spread of Greek culture in the east resulted in a new Hellenistic civilization, aspects of which were still evident in the traditions of the Byzantine Empire in the mid-15th century AD and the presence of Greek speakers in central and far eastern Anatolia until the Greek genocide and the population exchange in the 1920s. A considerable accession of power was granted him after the death of Philip, son of Machatas; and he was allowed to retain his authority at the death of Alexander himself (323 BC), as well as in the subsequent partition of the provinces at Triparadisus, 321 BC. After the assassination of Perdiccas in 321 BC, Macedonian unity collapsed, and 40 years of war between "The Successors" (Diadochi) ensued before the Hellenistic world settled into four stable power blocs: Ptolemaic Egypt, Seleucid Mesopotamia and Central Asia, Attalid Anatolia, and Antigonid Macedon. Possible causes include a drunken accident or deliberate revenge for the burning of the Acropolis of Athens during the Second Persian War by Xerxes;[90] Plutarch and Diodorus allege that Alexander's companion, the hetaera Thaïs, instigated and started the fire. [274] Firdausi's Shahnameh ("The Book of Kings") includes Alexander in a line of legitimate Persian shahs, a mythical figure who explored the far reaches of the world in search of the Fountain of Youth. [239][240][241][242], Libanius wrote that Alexander founded the temple of Zeus Bottiaios (Ancient Greek: Βοττιαίου Δῖός), in the place where later the city of Antioch was built. Was Alexander The Great the most important man that ever lived in the history of mankind? In the winter of 327/326 BC, Alexander personally led a campaign against the Aspasioi of Kunar valleys, the Guraeans of the Guraeus valley, and the Assakenoi of the Swat and Buner valleys. When the animal died (because of old age, according to Plutarch, at age thirty), Alexander named a city after him, Bucephala. This tutelage would instill in Alexander a lifelong love of reading and music. [121] Alexander founded two cities on opposite sides of the Hydaspes river, naming one Bucephala, in honour of his horse, who died around this time. [193] Lysippos' sculpture, famous for its naturalism, as opposed to a stiffer, more static pose, is thought to be the most faithful depiction. [58], While Alexander campaigned north, the Thebans and Athenians rebelled once again. [57], News then reached Alexander that Cleitus, King of Illyria, and King Glaukias of the Taulantii were in open revolt against his authority. [114], The fort of Massaga was reduced only after days of bloody fighting, in which Alexander was wounded seriously in the ankle. [84] Darius once more fled the field, and Alexander chased him as far as Arbela. [212] Thus, rather than megalomania, his behaviour may simply have been a practical attempt at strengthening his rule and keeping his empire together. The stronghold was heavily fortified and built on a hill, requiring a siege. [21][22][23] Among them were Artabazos II and his daughter Barsine, future mistress of Alexander, who resided at the Macedonian court from 352 to 342 BC, as well as Amminapes, future satrap of Alexander, or a Persian nobleman named Sisines. The common soldiers, anxious about his health, were granted the right to file past him as he silently waved at them. He founded more than twenty cities bearing his name. The Athenians, led by Demosthenes, voted to seek alliance with Thebes against Macedonia. The achievements of Alexander the Great can not be ignored because he not only altered the course of history but also the course of everyday life. His troops were extremely loyal, believing in him throughout all hardships. \"Philip ensured Alexander was given a noteworthy and significant education. When Miletus, encouraged by the proximity of the Persian fleet, resisted, Alexander took it by assault, but, refusing a naval battle, he disbanded his own costly navy and announced that he would “defeat the Persian fleet on land,” by occupying the coastal cities. attempt". The fleet was commanded by Nearchus, and Alexander’s own captain was Onesicritus; both later wrote accounts of the campaign. In July 331 Alexander was at Thapsacus on the Euphrates. Marching west into Illyria, Alexander defeated each in turn, forcing the two rulers to flee with their troops. Alexander's legacy includes the cultural diffusion and syncretism which his conquests engendered, such as Greco-Buddhism. There was much speculation about the cause of death, and the most popular theories claim that he either contracted malaria or typhoid fever or that he was poisoned. He had a high complexion and a harsh voice. Written by bass player Steve Harris, the song retells Alexander's life. Alexander the Great Alexander the Great: His Life and His Mysterious Death Ancient Greece Anthony Everitt Babylon Dionysus Hanging Gardens Mesopotamia Persian Empire Random House More Story 5 Audiobooks to Help With Those End-of-Summer Blues Every book is a journey, promised one of those 1980s reading posters in our elementary school library. He never lost a battle, despite typically being outnumbered. [27], At the age of 16, Alexander's education under Aristotle ended. He became king of the fringe Greek kingdom of Macedonia in 336 BC at the age [175], During his final years, and especially after the death of Hephaestion, Alexander began to exhibit signs of megalomania and paranoia. Many of these areas remained in Macedonian hands or under Greek influence for the next 200–300 years. His neck was in some way twisted, so that he appeared to be gazing upward at an angle. Any other answer would cause the mermaid to turn into a raging Gorgon who would drag the ship to the bottom of the sea, all hands aboard. He also dispatched Heracleides, an officer, to explore the Hyrcanian (i.e., Caspian) Sea. At Memphis Alexander sacrificed to Apis, the Greek term for Hapi, the sacred Egyptian bull, and was crowned with the traditional double crown of the pharaohs; the native priests were placated and their religion encouraged. [112] Alexander sent back vast sums from his conquest, which stimulated the economy and increased trade across his empire. Bessus was captured, flogged, and sent to Bactra, where he was later mutilated after the Persian manner (losing his nose and ears); in due course he was publicly executed at Ecbatana. [202], Alexander was erudite and patronized both arts and sciences. From Pamphylia onwards the coast held no major ports and Alexander moved inland. [230] Two of these pregnancies — Stateira's and Barsine's — are of dubious legitimacy. He invited the chieftains of the former satrapy of Gandhara (a region presently straddling eastern Afghanistan and northern Pakistan), to come to him and submit to his authority. [110] There was also considerable friction between Antipater and Olympias, and each complained to Alexander about the other. Philotas, Parmenio’s son, commander of the elite Companion cavalry, was implicated in an alleged plot against Alexander’s life, condemned by the army, and executed; and a secret message was sent to Cleander, Parmenio’s second in command, who obediently assassinated him. [272], In pre-Islamic Middle Persian (Zoroastrian) literature, Alexander is referred to by the epithet gujastak, meaning "accursed", and is accused of destroying temples and burning the sacred texts of Zoroastrianism. On Philip ’ s short reign marks a decisive victory went on to occupy the city eventually managed he to. Gaugamela would be the final and decisive encounter between Alexander and his on... 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