It is written in history that Alexander the Great was born on July 20, 356
B.C. in the area known as Macedonia. He was the son of Philip and Olympias.
As the only son of a stern father, the boy Alexander was tutored by a very
strict teacher, Leonidas. He proved to be a good student. He enjoyed and
excelled in both his studies as well as outdoor activities. He appeared to
enjoy drama and learned to play the flute and the lyre. He also liked
poetry. The active young man also liked to ride and hunt.
At the age of 13, the Greek philosopher Aristotle became his personal
tutor. Alexander now had lessons in philosophy, ethics, politics and
There are many anecdotes about the young Alexander, including the famous
one about how he learned to ride the rather wild horse, Bucephalus.
Alexander very intelligently figured out that Bucephalus was afraid of his
own shadow. By moving the horse so he could not see his shadow, Alexander
was able to ride it.
When Alexander was 16 years old, Philip went to war with Byzantium.
Alexander was made regent. Alexander himself became accomplished in battle.
He soon brought the area of Macedonia under his control and established a
city he called Alexandrapoulis. In 336, Alexander succeeded his father as
Alexander then began his battles with Persia. His nation was small
compared to the mighty Persian army. He defeated King Darius in 331. His
next step was to move to Babylon as the ruler of the Persian Empire. He
married Roxana, a Bactrian princess. This was a decision he made because he
liked the idea of a harmonious multi-racial society. Some of his generals
disagreed with him because they felt that as an only son, it was his duty to
marry a Macedonian. Alexander had more broad minded ideas, he had a vision
of an empire governed by tolerance. He even adopted some of the culture and
customs of the countries he conquered. Disagreements led to mutiny among his
generals. Alexander succeeded in dousing those fires. By the age of 32,
Alexander had conquered the world as it was then known. Unfortunately, he
caught a fever and in spite of his youth and strength, he died at the age of
History acknowledges him as one of the greatest generals who ever lived.
He was one of the most powerful personalities of the ancient world.