Alexander the Great

by Igorangelo
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Alexander the Great

Alexander the Great

The phalanx was one of the most effective tactics utilized in the Macedonian conquests of Alexander the Great. First introduced to the Macedonians by Philip II, the phalanx was an organized formation of spears called sarissas about 20 feet in length. As a whole, the Macedonian phalanx could march and maneuver rapidly and presented literally an unstoppable force or immovable object to enemy armies from all sides. For the majority of cavalry and infantry on foot to collide with the phalanx, it was incredibly intimidating.

Alexander first fought alongside his father, Philip II, when he was 16 at the Battle of Chaeronea. After Philip II was assassinated in 336 B.C.E by his bodyguard Pausanias, Alexander became King of Macedon when he was only 20 years of age.

Battle of Chaeronea

Battle of Gaugamela

Battle of Issus

Battle of the Hydaspes

The tale of Alexander and the Gordian Knot is one of the most celebrated in ancient history. Legend has it that when Alexander was at the city of Gordium in 333 B.C.E, he was told by the oracle to untie the Gordian Knot, a problem with no clear solution. According to Plutarch, Alexander pulled the knot out of its pull pin, and exposed the two ends whereby e could untie it without having to cut through the rope. The oracle later prophesized that the young king would go on to conquer Asia. Fulfilling the prophecy, Alexander journeyed as far as the Indus and Oxus rivers.

The Vergina Sun, was the symbol depicted on the shields of Philip of Macedon's army. It later came into usage when it became the official emblem of the Republic of Macedonia.

As a child, Alexander tamed a horse in Pella that was described by the locals as a "stubborn beast." The young Alexander quickly realized that the animal was afraid of its shadow, and turning it away from the sun he was able to tame it and call it his own. He eventually came to call this horse Bucephalus coming from the Hellenic word meaning "ox-head." Bucephalus was described by Plutarch as having a black coat with a large white star on ts forehead. Alexander continued to conquer many foreign lands with the horse at his side until he died during the Battle of the Hydaspes River in India. Bcause of their long-life friendship, Alexander founded the city Bucephalia in memory of his beloved horse.

During his travels in the former Persian Empire, Alexander had two wives in his attempts to produce a male heir. The first was Stateira (often called Barsine) who was a princess of Persia and daughter of Darius III whom Alexander had defeated at the Battle of Gaugamela. The second woman he married was Roxana, a noble who was said to be the most beautiful woman in Bactria. However many of Alexander's generals did not approve of the king choosing foreign brides over Macedonian women and begged Alexander to reonsider. He did not listen to them though, and encouraged they themselves to marry Asian women.

Fortune favours the Bold

- Virgil


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