Why Is Alexander the Great’s Legacy So Remarkable?

Why Is Alexander the Great’s Legacy So Remarkable?

Alexander the Great is one of history’s most influential figures. From a relatively small domain he conquered the superpower of the time and then went even further. He marched his armies from Europe to the Beas River in India, achieving feats that everyone believed impossible and creating one of the largest empires the world had yet seen. And all by the age of 32.

Although the empire quickly crumbled following his death, he left one of history’s most remarkable legacies. Here are several examples of the significant imprint Alexander left on the World.

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The legend that was Alexander

Stories relating to Alexander’s conquests soon became the stuff of legend. His young age, his divinity, his charisma and his megalomania were romanticised into fictional stories that remained popular down into medieval times.

“Arthurian” tales of Alexander emerged in several different cultures, each supplementing Alexander’s conquests with many fictional stories that suited their own ethnic agendas.

Jewish versions of the Alexander Romance, for instance, claimed that Alexander the Great visited the Temple of Jerusalem; meanwhile in Ptolemaic Egypt, stories spread that the Macedonian king was actually the son of the last Egyptian pharaoh Nectanebo II.

Alexander is also mentioned in the Quran as Dhul-Qharnayn – literally ‘the two-horned one.’

Romanticised versions of Alexander’s conquests became abundant. They include him venturing to far-flung mythical places, using a flying machine, learning about his death from a talking tree, going to the depths of the sea in a submarine and fighting mythical beasts in India with his army.

Arthurian tales of Alexander shone throughout Europe and the Near-East until the Renaissance period.

Divine Alexander

An illustration of Alexander the Great’s elaborate funeral carriage. A description of it survives in detail thanks to the historical source Diodorus Siculus.

After Alexander died and his body ran cold, his corpse became a symbol of divine power and legitimacy. Whoever possessed the corpse secured great sway in a post-Alexander world. A war was even fought over its possession, such was the impact he left on the world.

Following the climactic battle of Ipsus in 301 BC Ptolemy, the Successor king ruling Egypt, had Alexander’s body moved to the centre of his new capital at Alexandria and placed in a magnificent tomb.

From far and wide for the next 600 years visitors journeyed to Alexander’s city to see the tomb.

In 47 BC Julius Caesar, following his triumphant entry into Alexandria, visited the tomb in homage to his hero.

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Caesar proved the first of many prominent Romans to pay such homage. To those Romans who desired great power, Alexander was an immortalised conqueror who epitomised world conquest – a man to admire and emulate.

Throughout the Roman Imperial period, many emperors would visit Alexander’s tomb – emperors including Augustus, Caligula, Vespasian, Titus and Hadrian. For them all, the body symbolised the zenith of imperial power.

Many would thus associate themselves with Alexander – some more obsessively than others. The mad emperor Caligula for instance looted Alexander’s corpse of his breastplate.

Alexander’s body remained a place of pagan pilgrimage in Alexandria until 391 AD, when the Eastern Roman Emperor Theodosius officially banned paganism throughout the Empire. It is likely Alexander’s tomb was either destroyed or converted during this crisis.

To this day the whereabouts of Alexander’s body and his tomb remain shrouded in mystery.

Augustus visits the tomb of Alexander the Great.

Setting the military bar

Throughout the rest of antiquity many generals revered Alexander the Great as the ideal military commander. This was especially true of his ‘Successors.’

Alexander the Great’s demise unleashed chaos onto his empire as various ambitious generals waged wars to become his true successor. Over the next forty years many formidable figures would rise and fall in antiquity’s version of Game of Thrones.

During this period many generals sought to emulate the leadership of Alexander the Great. The man who perhaps came closest was Pyrrhus, the leader of the most powerful tribe in Epirus and famous for his campaign against Rome.

It was said of Pyrrhus that, of all the generals that came after Alexander, he was the one who most resembled the great conqueror:

They saw in him shadows, as it were, and intimations of that leader’s impetuosity and might in conflicts.

Later notable commanders such as Hannibal Barca and Julius Caesar similarly revered Alexander as a man to admire and emulate on the battlefield.

Upon meeting Hannibal at Ephesus in 193 BC, Scipio Africanus, the victor of Zama, asked his former foe whom he considered to be the greatest general of all time, to which Hannibal replied:

“Alexander … because with a small force he routed armies of countless numbers, and because he traversed the remotest lands.”

Hannibal placed himself third in the list.

As for Caesar, he held similar adulation for the Macedonian conqueror. A story goes that while a 31-year-old Caesar was travelling in Spain, he noticed a statue of Alexander the Great. Seeing the statue Caesar wept, lamenting how Alexander had forged a huge empire by the age of 31, while he himself had accomplished nothing.

Alexander the Great’s generalship thus inspired many of history’s most outstanding generals, including Pyrrhus, Hannibal, Caesar and, more recently, Napoleon Bonaparte.

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Creating the Hellenistic World

Alexander’s conquests spread Greek culture far and wide. During his campaigns he established Hellenic-style cities throughout his empire to improve administration, communication and trade.

Several of these cities remain prominent to this day. Both Kandahar (Alexandria-Arachosia) and Herat (Alexandria-Ariana) in Afghanistan and Khujand in Tajikistan (Alexandria-Eschate) were originally cities Alexander the Great founded as is, of course, Alexandria itself.

Following Alexander’s death Hellenistic kingdoms emerged across the length and breadth of Asia – from the Alexandria-based Ptolemaic kingdom in Egypt to the Indo-Greek kingdoms in India and Pakistan and the Greco-Bactrian Kingdom in Afghanistan.

A portrait of King Demetrius I ‘the Invincible’, a Greek king who ruled a large empire in modern day Afghanistan at the start of the 2nd century BC. Credit: Uploadalt / Commons.

From these areas, archaeologists have uncovered fascinating Greek-influenced art and architecture, perhaps most remarkably from the Greek-styled city of Ai Khanoum in northeastern Afghanistan.

The Hellenic art and architecture discovered at Ai Khanoum is some of the most beautiful in antiquity and provides a valuable insight to the Greeks in the East. Yet none of these fascinating Greek kingdoms would ever have existed if not for Alexander’s conquests.


Major themes include the use of The Law (1Timothy 1:7–11), warnings against false doctrine such as Encratism, instructions for prayer (1Timothy 2:1–8), roles of women in the church, qualifications for leaders of the church (1Timothy 3:1–13), and the treatment of widows, elders, masters, youth, and church members in …

From that point forward, Paul mentored Timothy by equipping him for the tasks of ministry, empowering him for success, employing him for effectiveness at the church in Ephesus, and by communicating his love, respect, and appreciation for Timothy as a son, brother, and messenger of Christ.


Tamed the horse Bucephalus

Philip, Alexander's father, bought a horse called Bucephalus for the exorbitant price of 13 talents (1 talent = 27 kg of gold), but the rambunctious animal bucked all comers. Watching the futile attempts, Alexander noticed that the animal was frightened by its own shadow. He bet his father that he could mount the horse. By turning Bucephalus toward the sun so its shadow was behind it, Alexander was able to climb into the saddle and gallop around triumphantly. To which his father said: "My boy, you must find a kingdom big enough for your ambitions. Macedonia is too small for you."

Bucephalus remained Alexander's faithful steed until it died in what is now present-day Pakistan, fighting elephant-mounted brigades.


Legacy

Alexander’s legacy extended beyond his military conquests. His campaigns greatly increased contacts and trade between East and West, and vast areas to the east were significantly exposed to Greek civilization and influence. Some of the cities he founded became major cultural centers, many surviving into the 21st century. His chroniclers recorded valuable information about the areas through which he marched, while the Greeks themselves got a sense of belonging to a world beyond the Mediterranean.

Hellenistic kingdoms

Alexander’s most immediate legacy was the introduction of Macedonian rule to huge new swathes of Asia. At the time of his death, Alexander’s empire covered some 5,200,000 km 2 (2,000,000 sq mi), and was the largest state of its time. Many of these areas remained in Macedonian hands or under Greek influence for the next 200–300 years. The successor states that emerged were, at least initially, dominant forces, and these 300 years are often referred to as the Hellenistic period.

The eastern borders of Alexander’s empire began to collapse even during his lifetime. However, the power vacuum he left in the northwest of the Indian subcontinent directly gave rise to one of the most powerful Indian dynasties in history. Taking advantage of this, Chandragupta Maurya (referred to in Greek sources as “Sandrokottos”), of relatively humble origin, took control of the Punjab, and with that power base proceeded to conquer the Nanda Empire.

Founding of cities

Over the course of his conquests, Alexander founded some twenty cities that bore his name, most of them east of the Tigris. The first, and greatest, was Alexandria in Egypt, which would become one of the leading Mediterranean cities. The cities’ locations reflected trade routes as well as defensive positions. At first, the cities must have been inhospitable, little more than defensive garrisons. Following Alexander’s death, many Greeks who had settled there tried to return to Greece. However, a century or so after Alexander’s death, many of the Alexandrias were thriving, with elaborate public buildings and substantial populations that included both Greek and local peoples.

Hellenization

Alexander’s empire was the largest state of its time, covering approximately 5.2 million square km. Hellenization was coined by the German historian Johann Gustav Droysen to denote the spread of Greek language, culture, and population into the former Persian empire after Alexander’s conquest. That this export took place is undoubted, and can be seen in the great Hellenistic cities of, for instance, Alexandria, Antioch[212] and Seleucia (south of modern Baghdad). Alexander sought to insert Greek elements into Persian culture and attempted to hybridize Greek and Persian culture. This culminated in his aspiration to homogenize the populations of Asia and Europe. However, his successors explicitly rejected such policies. Nevertheless, Hellenization occurred throughout the region, accompanied by a distinct and opposite ‘Orientalization’ of the Successor states.

The core of Hellenistic culture was essentially Athenian. The close association of men from across Greece in Alexander’s army directly led to the emergence of the largely Attic-based “koine“, or “common” Greek dialect. Koine spread throughout the Hellenistic world, becoming the lingua franca of Hellenistic lands and eventually the ancestor of modern Greek. Furthermore, town planning, education, local government, and art current in the Hellenistic period were all based on Classical Greek ideals, evolving into distinct new forms commonly grouped as Hellenistic. Aspects of Hellenistic culture were still evident in the traditions of the Byzantine Empire in the mid-15th century.

Some of the most unusual effects of Hellenization can be seen in Afghanistan and India, in the region of the relatively late-arising Greco-Bactrian Kingdom (250 BC-125 BC) in modern Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Tajikistan and the Greco-Indian Kingdom (180 BC – 10 CE) in modern Afghanistan and India. There on the newly formed Silk Road Greek culture apparently hybridized with Indian, and especially Buddhist culture. The resulting syncretism known as Greco-Buddhism heavily influenced the development of Buddhism and created a culture of Greco-Buddhist art. These Greco-Buddhist kingdoms sent some of the first Buddhist missionaries to China, Sri Lanka, and the Mediterranean (Greco-Buddhist monasticism). The first figural portrayals of the Buddha, previously avoided by Buddhists, appeared at this time they were modeled on Greek statues of Apollo. Several Buddhist traditions may have been influenced by the ancient Greek religion: the concept of Boddhisatvas is reminiscent of Greek divine heroes, and some Mahayana ceremonial practices (burning incense, gifts of flowers, and food placed on altars) are similar to those practiced by the ancient Greeks. One Greek king, Menander I, probably became Buddhist, and was immortalized in Buddhist literature as ‘Milinda’. The process of Hellenization extended to the sciences, where ideas from Greek astronomy filtered eastward and had profoundly influenced Indian astronomy by the early centuries AD. For example, Greek astronomical instruments dating to the 3rd century BC were found in the Greco-Bactrian city of Ai Khanoum in modern-day Afghanistan while the Greek concept of a spherical earth surrounded by the spheres of planets was adopted in India and eventually supplanted the long-standing Indian cosmological belief of a flat and circular earth. The Yavanajataka and Paulisa Siddhanta texts in particular show Greek influence.

Influence on Rome

Alexander and his exploits were admired by many Romans, especially generals, who wanted to associate themselves with his achievements. Polybius began his Histories by reminding Romans of Alexander’s achievements, and thereafter Roman leaders saw him as a role model. Pompey the Great adopted the epithet “Magnus” and even Alexander’s anastole-type haircut, and searched the conquered lands of the east for Alexander’s 260-year-old cloak, which he then wore as a sign of greatness. Julius Caesar dedicated a Lysippean equestrian bronze statue but replaced Alexander’s head with his own, while Octavian visited Alexander’s tomb in Alexandria and temporarily changed his seal from a sphinx to Alexander’s profile. The emperor Trajan also admired Alexander, as did Nero and Caracalla. The Macriani, a Roman family that in the person of Macrinus briefly ascended to the imperial throne, kept images of Alexander on their persons, either on jewelry, or embroidered into their clothes.

On the other hand, some Roman writers, particularly Republican figures, used Alexander as a cautionary tale of how autocratic tendencies can be kept in check by republican values. Alexander was used by these writers as an example of ruler values such as amicita (friendship) and clementia (clemency), but also iracundia (anger) and cupiditas gloriae (over-desire for glory).

Legend

Legendary accounts surround the life of Alexander the Great, many deriving from his own lifetime, probably encouraged by Alexander himself. His court historian Callisthenes portrayed the sea in Cilicia as drawing back from him in proskynesis. Writing shortly after Alexander’s death, another participant, Onesicritus, invented a tryst between Alexander and Thalestris, queen of the mythical Amazons. When Onesicritus read this passage to his patron, Alexander’s general and later King Lysimachus reportedly quipped, “I wonder where I was at the time.”

In the first centuries after Alexander’s death, probably in Alexandria, a quantity of the legendary material coalesced into a text known as the Alexander Romance, later falsely ascribed to Callisthenes and therefore known as Pseudo-Callisthenes. This text underwent numerous expansions and revisions throughout Antiquity and the Middle Ages, containing many dubious stories, and was translated into numerous languages.

In ancient and modern culture

Alexander the Great’s accomplishments and legacy have been depicted in many cultures. Alexander has figured in both high and popular culture beginning in his own era to the present day. The Alexander Romance, in particular, has had a significant impact on portrayals of Alexander in later cultures, from Persian to medieval European to modern Greek.

Alexander features prominently in modern Greek folklore, more so than any other ancient figure. The colloquial form of his name in modern Greek (“O Megalexandros”) is a household name, and he is the only ancient hero to appear in the Karagiozis shadow play. One well-known fable among Greek seamen involves a solitary mermaid who would grasp a ship’s prow during a storm and ask the captain “Is King Alexander alive?”. The correct answer is “He is alive and well and rules the world!”, causing the mermaid to vanish and the sea to calm. Any other answer would cause the mermaid to turn into a raging Gorgon who would drag the ship to the bottom of the sea, all hands aboard.

St. Augustine, in his book City of God, restated Cicero’s parable showing that Alexander the Great was little more than a leader of a robber band:

And so if justice is left out, what are kingdoms except great robber bands? For what are robber bands except little kingdoms? The band also is a group of men governed by the orders of a leader, bound by a social compact, and its booty is divided according to a law agreed upon. If by repeatedly adding desperate men this plague grows to the point where it holds territory and establishes a fixed seat, seizes cities and subdues people, then it more conspicuously assumes the name of kingdom, and this name is now openly granted to it, not for any subtraction of cupidity, but by addition of impunity. For it was an elegant and true reply that was made to Alexander the Great by a certain pirate whom he had captured. When the king asked him what he was thinking of, that he should molest the sea, he said with defiant independence: ‘The same as you when you molest the world! Since I do this with a little ship I am called a pirate. You do it with a great fleet and are called emperor’.

In pre-Islamic Middle Persian (Zoroastrian) literature, Alexander is referred to by the epithet gujastak, meaning “accursed”, and is accused of destroying temples and burning the sacred texts of Zoroastrianism. In Islamic Iran, under the influence of the Alexander Romance (in Persian: اسکندرنامه ‎ Iskandarnamah), a more positive portrayal of Alexander emerges. Firdausi’s Shahnameh (“The Book of Kings”) includes Alexander in a line of legitimate Iranian shahs, a mythical figure who explored the far reaches of the world in search of the Fountain of Youth. Later Persian writers associate him with philosophy, portraying him at a symposium with figures such as Socrates, Plato and Aristotle, in search of immortality.

The Syriac version of the Alexander Romance portrays him as an ideal Christian world conqueror who prayed to “the one true God”. In Egypt, Alexander was portrayed as the son of Nectanebo II, the last pharaoh before the Persian conquest. His defeat of Darius was depicted as Egypt’s salvation, “proving” Egypt was still ruled by an Egyptian.

The figure of Dhul-Qarnayn (literally “the Two-Horned One”) mentioned in the Quran is believed by some scholars to represent Alexander, due to parallels with the Alexander Romance. In this tradition, he was a heroic figure who built a wall to defend against the nations of Gog and Magog. He then traveled the known world in search for the Water of Life and Immortality, eventually becoming a prophet.

In Hindi and Urdu, the name “Sikandar”, derived from Persian, denotes a rising young talent. In medieval Europe he was made a member of the Nine Worthies, a group of heroes who encapsulated all the ideal qualities of chivalry.


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Alexander The Great Reputation

The Great Historical Reputation Alexander the Great, also known as Alexander the third, was the king of Macedonia a Greece kingdom. Alexander was also known by many to be a member of the Argead dynasty. The Argead dynasty was a group house for only rulers. Many may believe Alexander earned his legacy, respect and reputation after his father’s reputation however that is not accurate. Alexander earned his legacy by working hard and building his own name. He succeeded greatly, won wars and extended


What Legacy Did Alexander the Great Leave Behind?

Alexander the Great’s actions and decisions have significantly impacted upon the world during his time, ultimately leaving behind a legacy that can be affiliated with the westernization of the globe. He helped bring the western civilization, which included the scientific and liberal thinking of the Greeks to much of the rest of the world. He introduced a study of science for science’s sake to the nations and he is also considered as one of the most successful military commanders in history, for by the time of his death he had conquered most of the world known as Ancient Greece.

However, his greatest achievement – which is to this day debated by scholars all over the globe – is his role in cultural diffusion. Contemporary scholars have viewed Alexander as a philosophical idealist, striving to create unity of man-kind by his so-called fusion of the races policy. He uplifted the status of ordinary human beings, or as Plato and Aristotle called them - barbarians, to the members of a polis –citizens as opposed to as just subjects. Alexander introduced tolerance to the Greeks and Macedonians. Through his liberal thinking he demonstrated that a Persian or any other race could be the equal of a Greek or Macedonian and participate equally in a mature government. It is clear that before such a revolution of thought, most Greeks and Macedonians followed the thoughts of Aristotle, who as previously mentioned, believe that Barbarians (who were particularly easterners and Persians) were menial, vile, treacherous and degenerate human beings fit to be only slaves of the Greeks. When Alexander passed away there was, by a combination of integration, his own authority and stats, the intermarriage with Asians and the appointment of Asians of offices. Thus it can be said that Alexander revolutionized the thinking of the Hellenistic world, which in conjunction with his vast conquests, expansions and education of his empire, not to mention being responsible for the physical and.


Why you voted for Alexander the Great:

Alexander was the Philospher King. He led militarily but also understood how to really build an empire that would follow you, even those conquered.
Mike

The man brought down the greatest empire the world had seen, seemingly without difficulty and within a matter of just a couple of years, conquered most of the known world while fighting far from home, never lost a battle, led from the front, was tutored by Aristotle and maintained his passion for philosophy throughout his life, spread Greek culture across the globe … you get the idea. Oh, and he did all of this before the age of 33. Perhaps the clincher, however, is this: Julius Caesar weeped when he considered Alexander’s accomplishments.

He had an undefeated battle record. Upon his death, Alexander had conquered most of the world then known to the ancient Greeks.
Thomas

He conquered most of the known world, frequently doing things that were widely believed to be impossible!
And I’m named after him!
Alex

He conquered the world by his 18th birthday
Shane

He conquered his entire known world and continued onwards

Alexander was the Philospher King. He led militarily but also understood how to really build an empire that would follow you, even those conquered.

He had an undefeated battle record. Upon his death, Alexander had conquered most of the world then known to the ancient Greeks.

He conquered most of the known world, frequently doing things that were widely believed to be impossible!

He conquered the world by his 18th birthday

He conquered his entire known world and continued onwards

Surely its Alexander, he lived in times before Jesus yet they still teach his tactics at military academies today

Alexander III of Macedon , commonly known as Alexander the Great. Alexander the Great’s accomplishments and legacy have been preserved and depicted in many ways. Alexander has figured in works of both high and popular culture from his own era to the modern day. Titles: King of Macedon, Hegemon of the Hellenic League, Shahanshah of Persia, Pharaoh of Egypt and Lord of Asia

For the age in which they lived they were by far the most advanced technological and militarial civilization in the world using many inventions and techniques that still hold sway today. All of this held under a system that in equal measures was democratic but extremely ruthless.

Tremendous lasting impact in both military and cultural spheres – his tactics are still studied 2300 years later.

All would be rulers of the world were in awe of Alexander. His story, based largely on legends of his persona, is everything a military leader wished to be in life (handsome, bold, fearless, an artist and a dashing warrior).

In reality Alexander more than an experienced leader was an extremely lucky and able heir to the throne. Alexander is today revered and set apart from other leaders because of eurocentrism that still remains to this day.

Alexander the Great was one of the greatest conquerors and tactical minds of all time, as evidenced by his large empire acquired with relatively small resources. He was inspiring and charismatic, his men would (and did) follow him anywhere. Beyond the conqueror, however, he took Hellenistic culture to an entirely different level instead of the ideas of liberty, equality, philosophy, drama, and scientific categorization and study remaining in Greece and slowly spreading by basic trade and other modicums of idea osmosis, he spread it like wildfire across Asia Minor and the Middle East all the way to the Indian subcontinent. Very similar to Napoleon, except that Napoleon spread Nationalism, efficient bureaucracy, and a renewed vigor for republics. Both are great, but Alexander has to win in my book.

His stunning and rapid record speaks for itself, brilliant commander and fearless.

Conquered most of the known world, ruled Afghanistan, created one of the largest empires in history, all before he was 33. If he hadn’t dropped dead, he might have conquered the world.

He fought in the head of his army. His conditions were the same as of his soldiers his starting point was terrible small state with a huge an seemingly undefeatable enemy

Out of the choices given I believe Alexander is the greatest leader. I thought of such greats as Bismarck, Washington, Napoleon, and Augustus, however Alexander was able to be a very successful military leader and politician. The others were either great commanders or political leaders, not both.

With Alexander he was able to conquer lands with military tactics across the then-known world. The other candidates weren’t able to spread their military campaigns as far as he did as well as “liberate” territories such as Egypt.

On the battlefield, Alexander, like Napoleon, gave the soldiers a dramatic surge in morale. However, unlike Napoleon, Alexander also understood the different religions, cultures, and economies of the territories he captured. Granted, like Napoleon they may have both been aggressive military leaders, but Alexander was able to gain a lot of respect worldwide by not just conquering but keeping a lot of the conquered areas in-tact.

Because Alexander was able to conquer a lot of territory of the then-known world, allowing to keep their customs, inspiring his soldiers, and acknowledging economics impact by establishing Alexandria, I believe this shows that Alexander was a great military commander and political leader. Which is what makes him the greatest leader out of the choices.

He commanded an elite army inherited from his father, but even so, it takes some talent to crush the greatest empire in the world. Furthermore, he managed to keep his Macedonians from bickering and plotting too much against each other – not bad when leading a people among whom political assassinations was practically a standard procedure and every ascension on the throne was followed by the killing of all those opposed and all rival claimants.

An innovative general, Alexander led a superbly trained army, against many foes and throughout the known ancient world. Yet his force was small compared to those he fought, (Persians, Indians) and he never lost a battle. When he died at 33, he had conquered the entire known world, and we will never know if he was a capable governor because he died so young before he could truly rule his empire, yet as a military leader he is certainly without equal

He’s responsible for spreading Hellenic culture all the way to India shaping the Classical Age single handedly. Julius Ceaser is noted to have cried at the sight of a statue of Alexander because he could never be a great a leader as Alexander. Also, a simple statement of military tactics that is attributed to Alexander “Hammer and Anvil”.

He liberated more than conquered, and fought in the wars he waged.

Alexander III of Macedon (Alexander the Great) is the single greatest leader in all of history because he lead one of the grandest armies in the world and established one of the largest armies of antiquity. Dozens of the cities which he established still exist today, and the culture he spread and assimilated is very evident in the lands in which his empire existed. Truly, Alexander’s exploits have stood the test of time, and likely will remain standing until some other great leader buries them under blood and bone.

Uncomparably vast feats in significantly short space of time that will forever be remembered and compared.

Did the unimaginable by conquering the most powerful empire of its time, then pushing his army east into the unknown, spreading Hellenism and his name throughout the land. Alexander was a brilliant on-the-fly tactician, integrating units from disparate lands and cultures while also utilizing the terrain and his opponents tendencies to his advantage.

He created one of the largest empires in a short time

He was a fearless warrior and took part of front line battles. Therefore, unlike many other leaders, he inspired his people better than a “regular” king of sorts would have done. He was also a tactical and stratetical mastermind. His exploits speak for themselves.

Christopher

He rose from a small kingdom to conquer the known world – and his reputation was so fearsome that decades after his death people still refused to revolt out of fear that he might really still be alive and come back to punish them.

It’s a real shame that Ghengis Khan is not on the list, though.

A huge empire in his lifetime with some splendid military victories.

He helped unify most of the ancient world. And he was a certified military genius. Some of the combat accomplishments were quite amazing.

Alexander was so young when he conquered the then-world that it puts all these other old fogeys to shame – a true child prodigy. He was a kind and fair ruler to his citizens, which held together despite the vast mix of cultures. It was only after he died that his empire crumbled, signalling that it was really him that was the key piece that held the empire together. He also defeated Darius III, another leader in this poll, something that doesn’t apply to any of the other leaders I think. Go Alexander the Great!

Alex won every battle he fought. I believe no one else did that. Ceaser, Augustus, Gendis Khan all lost battles at one time.

Alexander the Great never lost a battle ever in his entire military campaign all the way to India. Had he not died he could have made the Grecian Empire as great or greater than the Roman Empire that was formed years later.

Alexander took the unity forged by his father in the Agean and with it conquered the colossus of Persia in 10 years and enabled Greek thought and language to permiate the entire near east and through the conquests of the Romans, extend throughout Western Europe, influencing all of modern history.

He was the greatest and brightsest leader. He didn’t only conquered all the known world (for the greeks until that time) but he also focused on unifying them.

He also used a lot of scientist during his quest including doctors engineers and many more. All together united under the commands of Alexander made the greatest empire the world has ever known in such a sort time (if we take into account the huge distances and the difficulty of transportation during that period) and by one ruler..

Smart cunning and ruthless he was the greatest because he thought for himself and knew what he wanted how he would get it

Run close by Napoleon, by to achieve so much in such a short period of time is something that is very hard to match, especially as the whole logistical side of what he did would have been far harder than Napoleon, plus he never lost.

He was the first real icon for unity amongst all people, he had his flaws though but his idea & vision is something that would inspire many, and what he achieved being so young in short span of time was amazing aswell. Also one of his quotes or something that he showed. Nothing is Impossible,everything is possible, you just have to have the willpower to do it.

To me, a leader is one who provides a strong example of how followers should live and believe, not necessarily how they must. I think Alexander fits this bill very well.

Not only did he utilize the military advances his father developed to defeat the most imposing army and empire of the time, often leading assaults himself (much to the worry of his officers and troops), but he then tried to join the cultures of Greece and Persia into a greater whole. To advance this idea, he even married a woman of that eastern empire and encouraged his followers to do so as well.

When he led his soldiers to the Indus River and they decided that they would go no further, he let them have their way. Unfortunately, many woes befell them during their return to Babylon, and later, Alexander failed to consolidate his dream for a combined east-west empire, but his conquests did help Greek culture thrive and survive through the middle ages, the crusades and on to inspire the Renaissance.

Alexander was the greatest military strategist of all time. He redefined warfare for ages to come and his death brought a civil war fought between the Seleucids and Ptolemaics that would last until Roman conquest hundreds of years later. Alexander was able to destroy a Persian army that massively outnumbered his and still have enough men to march through Persia and conquer the empire. Alexander may not have had the best of everything, but he made it work

He conquered most of the known world at the time with ease, all before he died young. He was known mainly for his military skills.

It may be true that without his father, Phillipous the second of Macedonia, Alexander the Great would not have been that great. However the reported historical fact depict him as an intelligent and charismatic personality, understanding complexities that go beyond simple strategy and tactics. He used the conquered lands, sent back to Europe a great variety of plants and animals that did not existed and bringing them a lot of the advantages that the Greek city-states had developed. He build cities all around the then known world in strategic locations, many of which continue to prosper. He allowed the conquered nations to continue their existences without forcing a religion upon them. And above all he did all this with minimal resources, always involving himself in all the aspects of his military, economic and cultural campaign. He brought forth an age of contact between nations that ignored each others existence and is rightfully remembered as Alexander the Great. If that is not a sign of greatness, I do not know what is.

He conquered all Greece, then Egypt, Persia, India… that makes a huge empire with so much victories during a so hard period of the History. Desire of territories was his main objective as an explorer and he will stay in the History by Alexander the great who makes Macedonia has one of the most extensive territories of all time.

None other in this list have realy had the same long time effect og his rule, making sure that greek culture became so dominant and making sure Rome herited it. Also he’s seen as a great figure not only in the “western” world, but in the middle east and India as well, and few have had as brilliant military careers as he have.

Because of introducing the psychology of the God/Man King, and using it to his advantage in warfare and conquest, while at the same time inspiring the world with advances in the sciences and mathematics.

No other man in history has conquered so vast an area with so little an Army I will be the first to point out that the classical Macedonians were Greek through and through, and only the snobbery of the Southern Greek states -who viewed anyone who didn’t both speak Greek, and organize themselves in city states as various shades of barbaric- but at the end of it, even if more or less controlled by Macedonia b the time of Alexander, it was the Macedonian army and some mercenary ‘auxiliaries’ that toppled what had been the greatest empire the world had ever seen, spread Greek culture to the Indus (where it would influence Indian culture, and have faint reverberations even in China and Japan- usually seen as culturally impregnable entities, even they felt the result of Alexanders mighty thrust East.)

As a single man, none have accomplished a greater feat the only man who might offer a challenge in terms of pure military conquest, Ghengis Khan falls flat on his face when one considers the cultural effect as a legacy of conquest, and between the two, i think its fairly certain that through modern eyes, it is far more easy to see Alexander, the Philosopher-King as perhaps the greatest ruler our little species has so far produced- had he lived longer, what else might he have done to make his legend yet greater then it already was?

Took over most of Europe and much of Asia and Africa. Was loved by his people. Ahead of his era and forward thinking in the fields of art, religion, architecture, city planning, and many other cultural and technological fields.

A military genius and a man that was wise enough to know when to consult others in areas where he did not know himself.

The battles he won, the enemies he defeated and the subjects he gained. In a few short years he forever became the benchmark for being called great.

Just with the sheer scale of the empire that Alexander created at an early time, he has to be the greatest

Surely its Alexander, he lived in times before Jesus yet they still teach his tactics at military academies today
Ian

Alexander III of Macedon , commonly known as Alexander the Great. Alexander the Great’s accomplishments and legacy have been preserved and depicted in many ways. Alexander has figured in works of both high and popular culture from his own era to the modern day. Titles: King of Macedon, Hegemon of the Hellenic League, Shahanshah of Persia, Pharaoh of Egypt and Lord of Asia
Alexander

For the age in which they lived they were by far the most advanced technological and militarial civilization in the world using many inventions and techniques that still hold sway today. All of this held under a system that in equal measures was democratic but extremely ruthless.
Gary

The man brought down the greatest empire the world had seen, seemingly without difficulty and within a matter of just a couple of years, conquered most of the known world while fighting far from home, never lost a battle, led from the front, was tutored by Aristotle and maintained his passion for philosophy throughout his life, spread Greek culture across the globe … you get the idea. Oh, and he did all of this before the age of 33. Perhaps the clincher, however, is this: Julius Caesar weeped when he considered Alexander’s accomplishments.
Darryl

Tremendous lasting impact in both military and cultural spheres – his tactics are still studied 2300 years later.
Jennifer

All would be rulers of the world were in awe of Alexander. His story, based largely on legends of his persona, is everything a military leader wished to be in life (handsome, bold, fearless, an artist and a dashing warrior).

In reality Alexander more than an experienced leader was an extremely lucky and able heir to the throne. Alexander is today revered and set apart from other leaders because of eurocentrism that still remains to this day.
Rodrigo

Alexander the Great was one of the greatest conquerors and tactical minds of all time, as evidenced by his large empire acquired with relatively small resources. He was inspiring and charismatic, his men would (and did) follow him anywhere. Beyond the conqueror, however, he took Hellenistic culture to an entirely different level instead of the ideas of liberty, equality, philosophy, drama, and scientific categorization and study remaining in Greece and slowly spreading by basic trade and other modicums of idea osmosis, he spread it like wildfire across Asia Minor and the Middle East all the way to the Indian subcontinent. Very similar to Napoleon, except that Napoleon spread Nationalism, efficient bureaucracy, and a renewed vigor for republics. Both are great, but Alexander has to win in my book.
Maxwell

His stunning and rapid record speaks for itself, brilliant commander and fearless.
Alex

Conquered most of the known world, ruled Afghanistan, created one of the largest empires in history, all before he was 33. If he hadn’t dropped dead, he might have conquered the world.
Julian

He fought in the head of his army. His conditions were the same as of his soldiers his starting point was terrible small state with a huge an seemingly undefeatable enemy
Ronen

Out of the choices given I believe Alexander is the greatest leader. I thought of such greats as Bismarck, Washington, Napoleon, and Augustus, however Alexander was able to be a very successful military leader and politician. The others were either great commanders or political leaders, not both.

With Alexander he was able to conquer lands with military tactics across the then-known world. The other candidates weren’t able to spread their military campaigns as far as he did as well as “liberate” territories such as Egypt.

On the battlefield, Alexander, like Napoleon, gave the soldiers a dramatic surge in morale. However, unlike Napoleon, Alexander also understood the different religions, cultures, and economies of the territories he captured. Granted, like Napoleon they may have both been aggressive military leaders, but Alexander was able to gain a lot of respect worldwide by not just conquering but keeping a lot of the conquered areas in-tact.

Because Alexander was able to conquer a lot of territory of the then-known world, allowing to keep their customs, inspiring his soldiers, and acknowledging economics impact by establishing Alexandria, I believe this shows that Alexander was a great military commander and political leader. Which is what makes him the greatest leader out of the choices.
Jaron

He commanded an elite army inherited from his father, but even so, it takes some talent to crush the greatest empire in the world. Furthermore, he managed to keep his Macedonians from bickering and plotting too much against each other – not bad when leading a people among whom political assassinations was practically a standard procedure and every ascension on the throne was followed by the killing of all those opposed and all rival claimants.
Öjevind

An innovative general, Alexander led a superbly trained army, against many foes and throughout the known ancient world. Yet his force was small compared to those he fought, (Persians, Indians) and he never lost a battle. When he died at 33, he had conquered the entire known world, and we will never know if he was a capable governor because he died so young before he could truly rule his empire, yet as a military leader he is certainly without equal
Ben

He’s responsible for spreading Hellenic culture all the way to India shaping the Classical Age single handedly. Julius Ceaser is noted to have cried at the sight of a statue of Alexander because he could never be a great a leader as Alexander. Also, a simple statement of military tactics that is attributed to Alexander “Hammer and Anvil”.
Brett

He liberated more than conquered, and fought in the wars he waged.
Mike

Alexander III of Macedon (Alexander the Great) is the single greatest leader in all of history because he lead one of the grandest armies in the world and established one of the largest armies of antiquity. Dozens of the cities which he established still exist today, and the culture he spread and assimilated is very evident in the lands in which his empire existed. Truly, Alexander’s exploits have stood the test of time, and likely will remain standing until some other great leader buries them under blood and bone.
Will

Uncomparably vast feats in significantly short space of time that will forever be remembered and compared.
Richard

Did the unimaginable by conquering the most powerful empire of its time, then pushing his army east into the unknown, spreading Hellenism and his name throughout theland. Alexander was a brilliant on-the-fly tactician, integrating units from disparate lands and cultures while also utilizing the terrain and his opponents tendencies to his advantage.

He created one of the largest empires in a short time
George

He was a fearless warrior and took part of front line battles. Therefore, unlike many other leaders, he inspired his people better than a “regular” king of sorts would have done. He was also a tactical and stratetical mastermind. His exploits speak for themselves.
Christopher

He rose from a small kingdom to conquer the known world – and his reputation was so fearsome that decades after his death people still refused to revolt out of fear that he might really still be alive and come back to punish them.
It’s a real shame that Ghengis Khan is not on the list, though.
David

A huge empire in his lifetime with some splendid military victories.
Chris

He helped unify most of the ancient world. And he was a certified military genius. Some of the combat accomplishments were quite amazing.
Jonathan

Alexander was so young when he conquered the then-world that it puts all these other old fogeys to shame – a true child prodigy. He was a kind and fair ruler to his citizens, which held together despite the vast mix of cultures. It was only after he died that his empire crumbled, signalling that it was really him that was the key piece that held the empire together. He also defeated Darius III, another leader in this poll, something that doesn’t apply to any of the other leaders I think. Go Alexander the Great!

He dared
Philippe

Alex won every battle he fought. I believe no one else did that. Ceaser, Augustus, Gendis Khan all lost battles at one time.
Stephen

Alexander the Great never lost a battle ever in his entire military campaign all the way to India. Had he not died he could have made the Grecian Empire as great or greater than the Roman Empire that was formed years later.
Ryan

Alexander took the unity forged by his father in the Agean and with it conquered the colossus of Persia in 10 years and enabled Greek thought and language to permiate the entire near east and through the conquests of the Romans, extend throughout Western Europe, influencing all of modern history.
John

He was the greatest and brightsest leader. He didn’t only conquered all the known world (for the greeks until that time) but he also focused on unifying them.
He also used a lot of scientist during his quest including doctors engineers and many more. All together united under the commands of Alexander made the greatest empire the world has ever known in such a sort time (if we take into account the huge distances and the difficulty of transportation during that period) and by one ruler..
Dimitris

Smart cunning and ruthless he was the greatest because he thought for himself and knew what he wanted how he would get it
Trevor

Run close by Napoleon, by to achieve so much in such a short period of time is something that is very hard to match, especially as the whole logistical side of what he did would have been far harder than Napoleon, plus he never lost.
Kevin

He was the first real icon for unity amongst all people, he had his flaws though but his idea & vision is something that would inspire many, and what he achieved being so young in short span of time was amazing aswell. Also one of his quotes or something that he showed. Nothing is Impossible,everything is possible, you just have to have the willpower to do it.
Mohammed

To me, a leader is one who provides a strong example of how followers should live and believe, not necessarily how they must. I think Alexander fits this bill very well.

Not only did he utilize the military advances his father developed to defeat the most imposing army and empire of the time, often leading assaults himself (much to the worry of his officers and troops), but he then tried to join the cultures of Greece and Persia into a greater whole. To advance this idea, he even married a woman of that eastern empire and encouraged his followers to do so as well.

When he led his soldiers to the Indus River and they decided that they would go no further, he let them have their way. Unfortunately, many woes befell them during their return to Babylon, and later, Alexander failed to consolidate his dream for a combined east-west empire, but his conquests did help Greek culture thrive and survive through the middle ages, the crusades and on to inspire the Renaissance.
Jonathon

Alexander was the greatest military strategist of all time. He redefined warfare for ages to come and his death brought a civil war fought between the Seleucids and Ptolemaics that would last until Roman conquest hundreds of years later. Alexander was able to destroy a Persian army that massively outnumbered his and still have enough men to march through Persia and conquer the empire. Alexander may not have had the best of everything, but he made it work
Darren

He conquered most of the known world at the time with ease, all before he died young. He was known mainly for his military skills.
Matthew

It may be true that without his father, Phillipous the second of Macedonia, Alexander the Great would not have been that great. However the reported historical fact depict him as an intelligent and charismatic personality, understanding complexities that go beyond simple strategy and tactics. He used the conquered lands, sent back to Europe a great variety of plants and animals that did not existed and bringing them a lot of the advantages that the Greek city-states had developed. He build cities all around the then known world in strategic locations, many of which continue to prosper. He allowed the conquered nations to continue their existences without forcing a religion upon them. And above all he did all this with minimal resources, always involving himself in all the aspects of his military, economic and cultural campaign. He brought forth an age of contact between nations that ignored each others existence and is rightfully remembered as Alexander the Great. If that is not a sign of greatness, I do not know what is.
Anastase

He conquered all Greece, then Egypt, Persia, India… that makes a huge empire with so much victories during a so hard period of the History. Desire of territories was his main objective as an explorer and he will stay in the History by Alexander the great who makes Macedonia has one of the most extensive territories of all time.
Nicolas

None other in this list have realy had the same long time effect og his rule, making sure that greek culture became so dominant and making sure Rome herited it. Also he’s seen as a great figure not only in the “western” world, but in the middle east and India as well, and few have had as brilliant military careers as he have.
Jimmy

Because of introducing the psychology of the God/Man King, and using it to his advantage in warfare and conquest, while at the same time inspiring the world with advances in the sciences and mathematics.
Steve

No other man in history has conquered so vast an area with so little an Army I will be the first to point out that the classical Macedonians were Greek through and through, and only the snobbery of the Southern Greek states -who viewed anyone who didn’t both speak Greek, and organize themselves in city states as various shades of barbaric- but at the end of it, even if more or less controlled by Macedonia b the time of Alexander, it was the Macedonian army and some mercenary ‘auxiliaries’ that toppled what had been the greatest empire the world had ever seen, spread Greek culture to the Indus (where it would influence Indian culture, and have faint reverberations even in China and Japan- usually seen as culturally impregnable entities, even they felt the result of Alexanders mighty thrust East.)

As a single man, none have accomplished a greater feat the only man who might offer a challenge in terms of pure military conquest, Ghengis Khan falls flat on his face when one considers the cultural effect as a legacy of conquest, and between the two, i think its fairly certain that through modern eyes, it is far more easy to see Alexander, the Philosopher-King as perhaps the greatest ruler our little species has so far produced- had he lived longer, what else might he have done to make his legend yet greater then it already was?
Harrison

Took over most of Europe and much of Asia and Africa. Was loved by his people. Ahead of his era and forward thinking in the fields of art, religion, architecture, city planning, and many other cultural and technological fields.

A military genius and a man that was wise enough to know when to consult others in areas where he did not know himself.
Chris

The battles he won, the enemies he defeated and the subjects he gained. In a few short years he forever became the benchmark for being called great.

Just with the sheer scale of the empire that Alexander created at an early time, he has to be the greatest


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What was Alexander the Great's most significant legacy?

"Perhaps the most significant legacy of Alexander was the range and extent of the proliferation of Greek culture," said Abernethy. "The reign of Alexander the Great signaled the beginning of a new era in history known as the Hellenistic Age. Greek culture had a powerful influence on the areas Alexander conquered."

Beside above, what was Alexander the Great's empire divided in to? After Alexander's death his Empire was divided among his four generals (known in Latin as the Diadochi, the name by which they are still referenced, from the Greek, Diadokhoi, meaning "successors"): Lysimachus - who took Thrace and much of Asia Minor. Cassander - controlled Macedonia and Greece.

Besides, what impact did Alexander the Great have on the world?

With the expansion of his empire, Hellenism, or Greek-influenced, culture spread from the Mediterranean to Asia. The passage of his armies through the mountainous regions of modern-day Afghanistan and Tibet led to the expansion of trade routes between Europe and Asia.

Why did Alexander destroy Thebes?

Destruction of Thebes Alexander punished the Thebans severely for their rebellion. Wishing to send a message to the other Greek states, he had the 30,000 Thebans not killed in the fighting sold into slavery.


Watch the video: Alexander the Great vs. Julius Caesar