Alexander the Great is the picturesque example of a hero and served as the historical inspiration behind hundreds of hero types in ancient Greek tales and many modern protagonists.
Through his military prowess, Alexander would start his global conquest by finishing the job that his father was never able to complete.
Few historical military figures have valued the culture of his wartime enemies as much as this king of Macedonia.
Alexander’s life was a journey filled with many influential people, and his death has been shrouded in mystery for centuries.
Who was Alexander The Great
Alexander the Great was a king of the ancient Greek kingdom of Macedon who lived from 356 BCE to 323 BCE. He was a military commander and conqueror who is considered one of the greatest military leaders in history.
Alexander was the son of King Philip II of Macedon and received his education under Aristotle. In 336 BCE, Alexander ascended to the throne at the age of 20 after his father’s assassination. He then set out to expand his kingdom and conquer new territories.
Alexander’s conquests took him across the Mediterranean and into Asia, where he defeated the Persian Empire and conquered Egypt, Syria, and parts of India. He is known for his tactical brilliance, military strategy, and ability to inspire his troops.
Alexander died at the age of 32 under mysterious circumstances, and his empire eventually collapsed after his death. However, his legacy lived on, and he is still regarded as one of the most influential figures in world history.
How tall was Alexander The Great ?
There are different historical accounts of Alexander the Great’s height, and it is difficult to determine his exact height with certainty.
However, most sources suggest that he was relatively short by modern standards, standing around 5’5″ (165 cm) tall. It’s worth noting, however, that height was not as significant a factor in ancient warfare as it is today, and Alexander’s military successes were due more to his strategic mind and tactical skill than his physical stature.
Alexander was one of the most influential kings of Greek culture, popularizing the idea of combining cultures rather than demolishing the pre-existing culture of a conquered land.
Nobody is exactly certain just how tall the courageous leader was, but most historians point to the story of Alexander the Great meeting King Porus of India in 326 Before the Common Era (B.C.E.). King Porus was a giant man, who was thought to have been around seven feet tall.
Alexander’s biographer Plutarch recalled his king claiming that the Indian King and his elephant were proportionate to Alexander and his horse.
Facts about Alexander The Great
- Alexander was born in 356 BCE in Pella, the ancient capital of Macedonia, which is now part of modern-day Greece.
- He was the son of King Philip II of Macedon and his wife, Queen Olympia.
- Alexander was tutored by the philosopher Aristotle, who taught him a wide range of subjects, including science, philosophy, and politics.
- At the age of 16, Alexander was appointed regent of Macedonia while his father was away on a military campaign.
- In 334 BCE, Alexander led an army of Greeks and Macedonians into Asia Minor, where he began his conquest of the Persian Empire.
- The Battle of Issus in 333 BCE was one of Alexander’s greatest victories, where he defeated a much larger Persian army led by King Darius III.
- Alexander famously cut the Gordian Knot, a knot tied by King Gordius that was said to be impossible to untie, with his sword instead of untying it as the prophecy predicted.
- After conquering Egypt in 332 BCE, Alexander founded the city of Alexandria, which became a major center of trade, learning, and culture in the ancient world.
- In 326 BCE, Alexander and his army crossed the Indus River into India, where they encountered fierce resistance from local tribes.
- Alexander’s horse, Bucephalus, was one of his closest companions and was said to be able to sense danger and protect his master in battle.
- Alexander was a great military strategist and is still studied by military academies around the world for his innovative tactics and maneuvers.
- Alexander was a patron of the arts and literature, and he encouraged the spread of Greek culture throughout his empire.
- Despite his military prowess, Alexander was a complex figure and is known to have wept when he saw the ruins of the city of Thebes, which he had destroyed in retaliation for their rebellion.
- Alexander was married three times, to Roxana of Bactria, Stateira II of Persia, and Parysatis II of Persia.
- After the death of his close friend and lover, Hephaestion, Alexander reportedly went into a period of mourning and refused to eat or drink for several days.
- Alexander suffered a near-fatal wound during the siege of Malli in India when he was struck by an arrow that pierced his lung.
- Alexander was fluent in several languages, including Greek, Macedonian, Persian, and Bactrian.
- Alexander was a heavy drinker and is said to have sometimes indulged in excessive drinking bouts with his companions.
- After conquering much of the known world, Alexander died in Babylon in 323 BCE at the age of 32, possibly from malaria or poisoning.
- Alexander’s legacy lived on long after his death, and his empire was divided among his generals, who continued to rule for several centuries. He is still remembered as one of the greatest military commanders and conquerors in history.
- Alexander was a skilled horseman and often rode at the head of his army during battle.
- Alexander is believed to have been an epileptic, and he suffered from several seizures throughout his life.
- The city of Alexandria became a major center for the study of medicine, thanks in part to the library and medical school that Alexander founded there.
- Alexander’s mother, Olympia, was famously ambitious and was said to have been involved in several assassination plots against her son’s enemies.
- Alexander was deeply influenced by the teachings of the philosopher Heraclitus, who believed that change was the only constant in life.
- Alexander was known for his generosity and often rewarded his soldiers with gold and land for their service.
- Alexander was a prolific writer, and he kept detailed records of his military campaigns and conquests.
- Alexander’s army was composed of soldiers from many different regions and ethnicities, and he encouraged his soldiers to marry and have children with local women to create a sense of unity.
- Alexander was a devout follower of the god Zeus, and he often sought guidance from the oracle at the temple of Ammon in Egypt.
- Alexander’s death sparked a power struggle among his generals, which eventually led to the division of his empire and the rise of several successor kingdoms.