Alexander was born in Pella, Macedonia, on July 20, 356 BC, to King Philip II and Queen Olympia.
He led his army to victory for over 15 years, undefeated in war.
For someone who conquered most of the known world, he died young. From his elevation to the throne of Macedonia to his death, he accomplished more than many of history’s most significant figures.
Top 10 Alexander the Great facts:
King Phillip II chose Aristotle to educate Alexander when he was 14. Aristotle was Plato’s student, although he wasn’t famous yet. King Phillip II invited Aristotle to teach his son, which Alexander’s mother supported because she trusted Plato’s disciple.
Alexander met Diogenes, a famous ascetic, in a renowned narrative. Diogenes felt man needed the necessities to survive. He travelled and preached in a barrel. Alexander asked him for help in a public square. Diogenes gently said, “Yes, you can step aside a little to not keep the sunshine from me.” Alexander was impressed by his honest reply and told his warriors that if he weren’t Alexander, he would have been Diogenes.
2. Philip II and Olympias were his Parents
Philip II and Olympias had Alexander the Great. Olympias, the youngest of eight spouses, believed she had a miracle child. Olympias taught Alexander from birth that he was a son of the gods and invincible. Historian Guy MacLean Rogers claims this belief helped him conquer all.
According to historian Susan Abernethy, his multifaceted psyche made him unpredictable and invincible. Alexander’s military management talents allowed him to encourage soldiers and plan effective wars even with fewer troops.
She also said Alexander trained and developed battlemen while building his army. He created structured training programs with his military advisors and rewarded top performers. His never-ending valor inspired his soldiers to great loyalty. His empathy helped Alexander, too.
Historical accounts suggest he failed to gain his soldiers’ faith despite his victories.
3. Alexander the Great loved Perfumes
The Persians made alluring scents from exotic plants in their gardens. He fell in love with these smells after defeating Persia.
According to the Lives of the Noble Greeks and Romans, Alexander’s skin and mouth smelled good. He applied Persian scents to his body.
Alexander’s tyranny started the tradition of sprinkling scent on one’s body and mouth to honor his holy forefathers. The fragrance also signified royalty and achievement.
4. Persian Style Captivated him
Alexander the Great loved perfume and Persian fashion. Alexander won Persia’s treasures and wonders by defeating Darius III.
Purple-obsessed Persians invented textile trousers. For royal status, they wore long robes over these trousers.
After conquering Persia, Alexander knew he needed to learn their culture to maintain control. He wore lengthy tunics, girdles, and wreaths for this. Macedonians were not pleased.
Alexander the Great ordered 92 Macedonians to marry Persian women in a mass wedding procession in Susa in 324 BC. Alexander married two Persian ladies, Stateira and Parysatis, but had no children with them.
Alexander and his father’s relationship soured when Phillip married Cleopatra. In 336 BC, a bodyguard stabbed King Phillip at a wedding dinner, and many suspected Alexander and his mother.
Alexander moved quickly to remove all obstacles to the throne. Alexander’s allies quickly killed King Phillip’s son from his final wife. However, several Thracians and Greeks rebelled. Alexander conquered Greece and restored Macedonian sovereignty over all captured states to quiet them. His rapid actions surprised everyone and forced them to submit.
6. Conquest Names
Alexander conquered all nearby enemies and numerous nations during his 13-year reign, changing Europe and Asia.
He led one of the most significant military operations with 43,000 soldiers and 5,500 cavalries.
He destroyed communities, conquered kingdoms and empires, and established 70 new cities. Alexander named them Alexandria. All of these Alexandria can be found from the beginning to the end of his military campaign. The second-greatest town in Egypt, near the mouth of the Nile in 331 BC, is the most famous.
Bucephala was founded near Alexander’s most arduous struggle in India. Bucephalus, his beloved horse, died in that pivotal battle.
7. Alexander and Roxane
Roxane (Roxana) was the daughter of Oxyartes, a Sogdian aristocrat who defended a mountain citadel against Alexander the Great. Alexander was fighting the Achaemenid Empire, and the Macedonians struggled to acquire land. They needed a truce with the natives to secure their trust and loyalty.
Alexander had military foresight. He was a clever tactician who used his army and weaponry to beat his adversaries. Alexander improved his father’s well-trained army. Alexander prioritized speed, skill, and agility over numbers. Hence his army stayed within 50,000.
Alexander first encountered Roxane while examining captives after storming the stronghold. Alexander cut a loaf of bread in half with his sword and divided it with his bride after their traditional wedding. Roxane accompanied Alexander to India in 326 BC and gave birth to his child shortly after his death.
Alexander mastered the Macedonian phalanx. Alexander used his father’s structure to win wars. He led 8–32 men with 12- to 18-foot Cornelian wooden spears in an attack. Alexander was powerful.9. Bucephalus: Royal Steed
Bucephalus – The Royal Steed
Bucephalus was King Phillip’s expensive horse. Trainers couldn’t manage the horse’s crazy field behavior. Alexander discovered Bucephalus was terrified of his shadow while watching the trainers fail. He bet his father that he could tame the horse.
He quietly turned Bucephalus to face the sun, slowly stepped into the saddle, and triumphantly rode him. Legend has it that his father, King Phillip, held him in his arms and exclaimed, “O my son, look thee out a kingdom equal to and worthy of thyself, for Macedonia is too little for thee.” Onlookers cheered. This event foreshadowed Alexander’s prominence. Bucephalus was likely to become the most famous horse ever after this.
10. The Gordian Knot
Gordius, the builder of Gordium, used this complicated knot to attach his chariot. The oracle’s prophecy that whoever unravelled the rope would rule Asia was more famous. Naturally, several sought to undo it but failed.
Alexander was poised to conquer Asia Minor at 23. Alexander tackled the Gordian knot while campaigning in the central mountains and Gordium. He desperately tried to untangle the knot in front of Macedonians and locals. He finally drew his sword and cut it. Based on history, this occurrence predicted Alexander’s rise to “the Great.”
11. Persians Defeat
Alexander and resumed his attempt to conquer the mighty Persian Empire after restoring peace and Macedonian dominance over the bordering states. Alexander fought Darius III three times. In the spring of 334 BC, the Macedonians won the first battle at the Granicus river in Asia Minor. Alexander conquered Asia Minor with 110 men.
In the Battle of Issus, they fought again. Alexander’s deception forced the Persians to retreat, forcing Darius to flee. Darius led 200,000 soldiers and 34,000 cavalry against the Macedonians in the decisive Battle of Gaugamela. The Macedonian army again defeated the Persian Empire, confirming its fall.
12. Strange Death
By 32, Alexander had annexed most of the world. In May 323 BC, he returned to Baghdad after a campaign across Asia. He attended a friend’s dinner party on May 29 to plot his subsequent conquests. He felt sick and went to bed with a fever after heavy drinking.
His fever worsened condition during the next few days. One of history’s greatest conquerors died at a young age on the ninth day, unable to leave his bed. Conspiracy rumors followed his premature death. Antipater and Cassander were suspected. Some thought Aristotle was involved. Modern doctors say malaria killed him.
13. They kept him well after his Death
Alexander’s body was embalmed at Babylon by Egyptians, according to Plutarch. Many historians say his remains were stored in a honey pot to avoid deterioration.
Ptolemy I of Egypt stopped Alexander’s body from reaching Macedonia two years after his death. Ptolemy wanted me to inherit his empire.
14. Alexander the Conqueror
After becoming the uncontested King of Macedonia in 336 BC, Alexander faced many surrounding rebellions. Naturally, the rebellious Thracian and Greek communities accepted him as their king due to his commanding authority. He challenged the Persian Empire at 22. 11 years later. Alexander conquered most of Asia.
Alexander became a legend from his first win at age 18 under his father’s command to his epic conquests over the Persians and other powerful Asian kingdoms and settlements. His never-lost battles show his military prowess. The Macedonians had established a Mediterranean-to-Indian empire by the time their army crossed the Indus.
Conclusion Modern historians are still influenced by Alexander the Great.
His father launched, and he completed the Macedonians’ grand unification and expansion. He extended his dominion to the farthest reaches of Asia and spread Greek civilization worldwide.
Alexander was one of the best tacticians and military geniuses ever. His methods and training turned an experienced army into a proficient killing machine, and modern military leaders still study his war tactics.