Alexandria's founded by Alexander

Alexandria's founded by Alexander the Great (by year BC): 334 Alexandria in Troia (Turkey) - 333 Alexandria at Issus/Alexandrette (Iskenderun, Turkey) - 332 Alexandria of Caria/by the Latmos (Alinda, Turkey) - 331 Alexandria Mygdoniae - 331 Alexandria (Egypt) - 330 Alexandria in Areia (Herat, Afghanistan) - 330 Alexandria of the Prophthasia/in Drangiana/Phrada (Farah, Afghanistan) - 330 Alexandria in Arachosia (Kandahar, Afghanistan) - 330 Alexandria in Caucasus (Begram, Afghanistan) - 329 Alexandria of the Paropanisades (Ghazni, Afghanistan) - 329 Alexandria Eschate or Ultima (Khodjend, Tajikistan) - 329 Alexandria on the Oxus (Ai-Khanoum OR Termez, Afghanistan) - 328 Alexandria in Margiana (Merv, Turkmenistan) - 326 Alexandria Nicaea (on the Hydaspes, India) - 326 Alexandria Bucephala (on the Hydaspes, India) - 325 Alexandria Sogdia - 325 Alexandria Rambacia (Bela, Pakistan) - 325 Alexandria Oreitide - 325 Alexandria in Opiene (confluence of Indus & Acesines, India) - 325 Alexandria on the Indus - 325 Alexandria Xylinepolis (Patala, India) - 325 Alexandria in Carminia (Gulashkird, Iran) - 324 Alexandria-on-the-Tigris/Antiochia-in-Susiana/Charax (Spasinou Charax on the Tigris, Iraq) - ?Alexandria of Carmahle? (Kahnu)

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Alexander the Great, Man and God by Ian Worthington

After reading Ian Worthington’s book Philip II, King of Macedonia, I had high hopes for a book about Alexander by the same author.

Alexander the Great, Man and God by Ian Worthington (ISBN 1-405-80162-X) follows Alexander from the first day when he became king after the assassination of his father, Philip II of Macedonia, until his death in Babylon.

The author expresses a surprising and unexpected strong opinion of Alexander as he clearly is pro-Philip while here he appears as an anti-Alexander. At times I find it difficult to accept this point of view, but that is evidently a matter of opinion. Each and every historian writing about Alexander has his own appreciation and view.

For me, the most inspiring chapters are the last ones in this book where Worthington analyses the impact of Alexander’s untimely death in the then known world and the imprint he left for posterity. The author also takes a closer look at the “Man and God” part of his title, quoting very appropriately the Indian philosophers Alexander consulted when he was in that country. “How can a man become a god?” was his question, and the answer he received was “By doing something a man cannot do”. Whether this quote is true or pure propaganda is open for discussion, of course, but the subject is worth consideration. Another chapter, "Philip’s Ghost", develops the role which Philip as a king played in Alexander’s upbringing but more so in his life – a point that is generally overlooked by Alexander authors.

Sadly, this book does not make it to my top ten but that does not mean that it does not deserve a place on the bookshelves of the true Alexander aficionado.

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