In the 4th century BC a small but struggling European nation became the great Macedonian Empire , thanks to the great feats of a young monarch known as Alexander the Great. In a few years he gained control of a land area greater than that of any ruler before his time. When was Alexander the Great born?
The exploits of Alexander the Great had a tremendous impact on the ancient world. The mark he left in history is absolutely indelible, not only for his feats but also for his unique personality. What he achieved in his short life, made him considered a god.
Who was Alexander the Great?
Alexander the Great was the king of Macedonia for thirteen years from 336 BC to 323 BC the year he died. He is considered one of the greatest military geniuses in history for being a famous conqueror of the ancient world . He was one of the most magnificent and enigmatic rulers in history.
He was an impetuous, cultured and sophisticated young man, as he was under the tutelage of the prominent philosopher Aristotle . He is remembered for his great conquests, his tactical skill, and the expansion of Greek civilization to the east. When was Alexander the Great born?
Biography of Alexander the Great
Alexander the Great was born in Pella, Macedonia, on July 20, 356 BC He was the son of the Macedonian king Philip II and Olympia of Epirus, who prepared him from a young age to be a great ruler and warrior. He was instructed by prominent teachers, Aristotle being undoubtedly the most important. This famous philosopher educated him in the most significant aspects for a king: politics, philosophy and strategy.
From his teens, Alexander distinguished himself in military feats and quickly demonstrated the skills to reign, assuming responsibilities from an early age. At sixteen, while his father was absent, he ruled Macedonia. In 336 BC when he was only 20 years old he was appointed king , since his father had been assassinated.
In 334 BC he began a series of conquests that marked the course of history and made him deserve the title of Alexander the Great. From his love life it is mentioned that he married Roxana from whom a son was born whom he called Alejandro (Aigos) . Likewise, he also married Statira, a daughter of Darius III the Persian king. In addition, he had an illegitimate son named Heracles (Hercules), with a woman named Barsina. When was Alexander the Great born?
Reign of Alexander the Great
He began his reign by suppressing rebellions and consolidating Macedonian rule over the Greek city-states. In 334 BC the conquest of the Persian empire commanded by Darius III began. In the first years of his reign he obtained important victories with which he added Egypt , Anatolia, Central Asia and the Middle East to his empire .
In addition, he reached India , where he defeated King Poro in the battle of Hydaspes. After obtaining the victory of all his battles, he was able to conquer a wide territory . In the brief period of his reign, only thirteen years, he was able to completely change the cultural and political structure of the area. It initiated an exchange of cultures between the Greeks and the peoples they conquered , known as the Hellenistic period .
What did Alexander the Great do?
In a very short time Alexander the Great accomplished what no other man has accomplished in the same period of time. Some of the most outstanding things he did were:
- The creation of one of the greatest empires of the ancient world , which spanned present-day Greece to India, including Egypt as well. When was Alexander the Great born?
- He consolidated the union of the territories he conquered including Persian soldiers to his army and through the marriage alliance between Persians and Greeks.
- He unified the Greek and Persian empires under the same mandate, language, commerce and currency.
- It created many transcontinental trade routes.
- He founded more than 70 cities , most of them called Alexandria, with Egypt being the main one.
Battles of Alexander the Great
Of all the battles that Alexander the Great carried out, it is outstanding that he did not lose any, in all he won. Among these battles are:
- Queronea in 338 BC
- Granicus and Miletus in 334 BC
- Issos carried out in 333 BC
- Tire and Gaza fought in 332 BC
- Gaugamela in 331 BC
- Persian door 330 BC
- Sogdian Rock (327 BC)
- Aorno fought in 326 BC
- Hydaspes in 325 BC
Conquests of Alexander the Great
Alexander the Great managed to conquer a wide territory such as Asia Minor, Egypt, Persia and India.
ALEXANDER THE GREAT IN ASIA MINOR AND EGYPT – Alexander began to expand the Greek empire in Macedonia. In 334 BC he crossed the Hellespont, passing into Asia Minor. He faced the Persian army near the Granic River, a battle in which he was victorious. After conquering the Persian cities they reached Gordio, where Alexander the Great managed to cut the Gordian knot with his sword. When was Alexander the Great born?
With impressive speed Alexander managed to conquer Syria, Palestine and Egypt , where he was received as a liberator or pharaoh . In addition, there he founded one of the most famous cities of the ancient world – Alexandria.
ALEXANDER THE GREAT IN PERSIA – After achieving the conquest of Egypt, Alexander went with his army to conquer Persia. In the year 331 BC he carried out the battle of Gaugamela obtaining the triumph . In a short time he took control of the administrative capitals of the Persians ( Babylon , Susa and Persepolis).
ALEXANDER THE GREAT IN INDIA – After spending two years in Persia, Alexander planned his plan to conquer India. He crossed the Indus River and defeated the Hindu king Poros in 326 BC at the Battle of Hydaspes . This battle was very unique because the enemy army consisted of two hundred war elephants and it would be their last battle.
Although Alexander had plans to continue his conquests, his army demanded that he fall back. In a short time, just eight years, Alexander came to conquer much of the ancient world.
Army of Alexander the Great
When beginning his campaign of conquests Alexander counted on an army of 40,000 men . This army consisted of 35,000 infantrymen and about 5,000 cavalry . It was a very low amount when compared to Darío’s, which was made up of 600,000. However, his army increased to 50,000 when he received reinforcements from the Greeks. When was Alexander the Great born?
His army consisted of different corps, which complemented each other: heavy and light infantry, heavy and light cavalry, and siege weapons such as catapults. Its military might was based on a formation called the phalanx (a deep mass of ranks of armed soldiers). This military tactic was used first by his father and later honed by Alexander the Great to a high level of effectiveness.
Contributions and achievements of Alexander the Great
There were many contributions and achievements made by Alexander the Great, among which are:
- It created a new era: the Hellenistic .
- Greek became an international language .
- He spread Greek culture by permeating language, religion, politics, literature, and art.
- He founded more than 70 cities .
- He achieved cultural unification .
- He conquered many cities managing to turn Macedonia into a great empire.
- Alexander became an inspiration for famous conquerors like Julius Caesar and Napoleon Bonaparte .
- He managed to change the ancient world.
Death of Alexander the Great
Although Alexander the Great wanted to pursue his plans to restore Babylon and make it his capital city, in reality he was unable to do so. Shortly after returning to Babylon, he died on June 13, 323 BC when he was 32 years old. Although it is not known for sure what caused his death, Alexander is said to have contracted malaria. When was Alexander the Great born?
His remains were taken to Egypt and placed in a tomb in Alexandria, and then a series of conflicts began (which will last 40 years) to define among the diádocos , who will be the successor of Alexander the Great.