Ancient history is full of conquerors that can be attributed as excellent commanders, but none can compare the might of Alexander the Great and Julius Caesar. For one conquered the whole of the then known world and the other laid the foundations of the mighty Roman Empire. Although Alexander and Caesar had contrasting early part of their lives, reason being that one was a ruler and the other politician. It is generally the later part of their lives which signifies and compares them; they made great conquests, and that was possible not only because of their generalship and bravery, but the luck they had and inspiration they got from different figures in history. However, it was later to prove that the political life of Caesar proved to be much harder than the independent nature of Alexander.
Both Alexander and Caesar had their ancestry traced back to Zeus, the king of Greek gods [Livius]. Belonging to such a high-profile background naturally brought inspiration along with it. They tried to model their lives accordingly; Alexander modeled very much on Heracles, setting out likes him and rampaging every enemy that come in his way. As for Caesar, Plutarch records that he was very much influenced by the life of alexander and wept on the fact that by the time Alexander had conquered most of the known world, he had not yet achieved anything significant [Roman-Empire]. Caesar was more determined after this incident (63 BC) and just seventeen years later, in 46 BC, he became the Dictator of Rome.
Other important factors attributed with their victories are the luck that they had and the courage that they showed in the battle field. Unlike those generals who preferred staying at the back and just giving orders, they led by example and always fought in the front ranks. There were numerous instances when Caesar was the first one to step forward from the ranks, like he did in Hispania against Pompey when he ran in front of his army and took 200 arrows thrown by the...
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