Alexander the Great|
Alexander was the son of Philip II of Macedonia. He was born in Pella, Macedonia’s capital city in 356 BC. Alexander was tutored by Aristotle, one of the greatest philosophers and smartest men of the time, from when he was 13 until he was 16. He was also leader of the Companions, which was a group Philip II made to protect him from would be assailants (Alexander the Great Biography) (historyofmacedonia.org).
In 340 BC Alexander’s father, Philip II, left for Thrace. While he was away, he left Alexander in charge of the kingdom. While Alexander is in charge, a Thracian tribe of Maedi in north-eastern Macedonia started a rebellion. Alexander took swift action. He assembled an army and led them against the rebels. Alexander was easily able to defeat the rebels and capture their city, which he renamed Alexandropolis. At the age of 18, Alexander was given a commanding rank among the senior generals of Macedonia as they invade Greece (Alexander the Great Biography) (Culverhouse) (historyofmacedonia.org).
The battle of Chaeronea, in 338 BC, was the final battle between Athens and the forces of Macedonia. It is a hard vicious battle that proved to be very taxing on both sides. However, the Macedonian forces pull out a very narrow victory and Athens is finally subdued. In celebration, the Macedonians decide to have a Dionysus festival when they return home in 336 BC. While attending this festival, Philip II is approached by an ex-lover with whom he had a child. He had earlier promised that the child would have a high ranking place in his army, but now he refused to acknowledge that the child even belonged to him. Philip II was so conceded that he assumed the woman was approaching him for another night of pleasure, but instead she killed him by slitting his throat. After his father is slain, Alexander takes over as ruler of the Macedonian Empire in 336 BC (Alexander the Great Biography) (Culverhouse) (historyofmacedonia.org).
Immediately after Philip II’s death, the places he conquered began to revolt. Alexander, being the great leader that he is, easily stomps out the rebellions. Alexander then looks to take over Persia, which is at this point led by Darius III. When they reach Persia and begin to fight, Alexander’s troops tear through the Persians and appear almost invincible against them. As he defeats the Persians, he is recruiting the defeated soldiers instead of killing them. This expands his troops and allows him to keeps the numbers of his armies high so he can stay and fight longer (Alexander the Great Biography) (Culverhouse) (historyofmacedonia.org).
The soldiers he tries to recruit eagerly accept his offer. The soldiers do this because he offers them pay, and he tells them that they are free to leave whenever they please. Alexander only asks that his troops be able to marry Persian women. Alexander does this in hopes that it will unite the Persian people with his (Alexander the Great Biography) (Culverhouse) (historyofmacedonia.org).
In 331 BC, the Battle of Gaugamela, which is the final battle between Darius III and Alexander the Great, takes place. The Persians are horribly defeated at this battle. Their leader, Darius III, is finally slain, and the Persian’s main city, Persepolis, is sacked and burned to the ground. After the battle, Alexander takes Roxanne of Bactria as his wife, which his men highly disapprove of (Alexander the Great Biography) (Culverhouse) (historyofmacedonia.org).
Alexander then moves on to conquer Babylon, and pushes on to the Indus valley. Here Alexander and his troops meet heavy resistance that they have never seen before. War elephants are used against Alexander and his men, and they have no idea how to combat against the huge beasts. So Alexander orders that they retreat and come in a few weeks stronger than before to conquer the Indus valley tribes, but his men disagree. At this point Alexander and his men have been out conquering for about ten years and his men are ready to return home. So his men organize a mutiny against him, which he easily disbands. Alexander realizes his men’s fatigue and does decide to return home to Macedonia (Alexander the Great Biography) (Culverhouse) (historyofmacedonia.org).
On their way home, Alexander decides to throw a party to raise his men’s moral. Even though Alexander’s men advise him against it because they can tell he is sick, he begins to drink heavily. This is a bad idea because he is believed to have had yellow fever at the time. Alexander eventually drinks himself into a coma, but somehow comes out of it and survives two more days with his sickness. He has no heir in line for the throne, so while he is on his death bed his men ask him who will be the next ruler. Alexander just laughs and says, “Whoever is the Strongest.” Alexander’s death was in the year 322 BC (Alexander the Great Biography) (Culverhouse) (historyofmacedonia.org).
Since he left no heir, Alexander’s kingdom was split into three different parts. Egypt is taken by Alexander’s right hand man, Ptolemy. Ptolemy took samples of every new plant he found and became the world’s first botanist. Ptolemy Egypt, even though it was near ruins, turned out to be the most durable of the three. Seleucid Asia is next. It has the best resources out of the three, but is the least stable of the three and a complete failure. The instability is caused by Seleucid trying to force Greek tradition on the Persians, and the Persians are constantly rebelling. The third and final part is the homeland of Alexander the Great, and the most fought over. It was taken by Antigonus, and even though there was still a great deal of instability here, it was to a lesser extent than that of Seleucid Asia (Alexander the Great Biography) (Culverhouse) (historyofmacedonia.org).
Alexander the Great Biography. 1996-2012. 30 October 2012 <http://www.biography.com/people/alexander-the-great-9180468>. Culverhouse, Mr. C. History Teacher Craig Wilson. October 2012. historyofmacedonia.org. Alexander the Great(Alexander of Macedon) Biography. 2001-2003. 30 October 2012 <http://www.historyofmacedonia.org/AncientMacedonia/AlexandertheGreat.html>.