At the age of 20, Alexander III became the king of Macedonia when his father Philip was assassinated. Before he could begin his now famous campaign to conquer Persia, he had to take control of Illyria, Greece, and the Thracian tribes. Once his control of the region was in place he began hi campaign to conquer Persia. Alexander had amassed a large military force that included some 48,000 soldiers, 6,000 cavalry, and a naval force that consisted of 120 ships and 38,000 sailors.
Alexander invaded Asia when he crossed with his army at Hellespont. His first victory over the Persian army occurred at Granicus. Alexander continued down along the Ionian coast winning numerous battles and sieges. During the battle of Issus, Alexander’s army defeated Persia’s main army under the command of Darrius III. This defeat gave Alexander control of land as far as the Euphrates river in what is now modern day Iraq. Alexander continued along the Medeteranean coast and conquered Syria. He was forced to lay siege on the island city of Tyre, which refused to capitulate to him. After a five month long siege, Tyre finally fell. As a result of the siege an enraged Alexander had 7000 men killed and 30,000 women and children were sold into slavery.
Alexander’s next major battle occurred at the stronghold of Gaza. It was here that Alexander received a serious shoulder wound. It took four attempted assaults in order to defeat Gaza. Just like Tyre, every man of military age was killed and the rest of women and children were sold into slavery.
Alexander entered Egypt and was hailed not only as a liberator but also ordained as the new Master of the Universe. While in Egypt he created the now legendary city called Alexandria. Alexander left Egypt moving eastward into Mesopotamia where he met and defeated Darius at the battle of Gaugaumela. Darius once again fled while Alexander chased him all the way to Arbela....