General Information about Alexander The son of Phillip II, who inherited his throne and ambition as well as an army of 30,000 foot soldiers and 2,000 men on horseback Believed himself to be descended from semi divine beings: Andromache and Achilles on his mother’s side and from Hercules on his father’s Was a pupil of Aristotle Created a distinctive hairstyle for himself, the famous anastole After “cutting the Gordian knot” it remained a metaphor of decisive action and a presage of empire
During Alexander’s Campaign Alexander defeated the vast Persian army at Issus in 333 B.C. He united regions such as Europe and Asia Moved into Egypt and Mesopotamia and in 331-330 seized the great Persian capitol at Persepolis After retreating his exhausted army from crossing the Beas River, he began to prepare for the invasion of the Persian Gulf and Arabian Littoral When attending a banquet Alexander exchanged a toast in which he downed twelve pints of undiluted wine in one steady draft, after collapsing in a coma doctors were unable to revive him
After His Death Was seen as the archetypal empire builder: “The sole conqueror in the memory of mankind to have founded a universal empire” Historians say his ambition had been not merely to conquer or even to assimilate the mighty Persian Empire, it had been to unite east and west, Asia and Europe, Hellene and Barbarian It is not what Alexander intended to achieve but what he believed to achieve that people look upon him as the first world conqueror
Sources Pagden, Anthony. Peoples and Empires: a Short History of European Migration, Exploration, and Conquest, from Greece to the Present. New York: Modern Library, 2001. Print.