September 20th People

September 20th

09-20-365 BC – 06-10/11- 323 BC Alexander the Great – The Greek King of Macedonia. Born in Pella, capital of the Kingdom of Macedon (Macedonia). He succeeded his father, Philip II, to the throne at the age of twenty. He spent most of his ruling years on an unprecedented military campaign through Asia and northeast Africa, until by the age of thirty he had created one of the largest empires of the ancient world, stretching from Greece to Egypt and into northwest India. He was undefeated in battle and is considered one of history’s most successful military commanders. Military academies throughout the world still teach his tactics. He is often ranked among the world’s most influential people of all time. During his youth he was tutored by the philosopher Aristotle. Alexander married three times: once out of love and twice for political reasons. He also had a close relationship (possibly his lover) with his general and bodyguard, Hephaestion. They compared their relationship to that of Achilles and Patroclus. Hephaestion’s death devastated Alexander. Plutarch says “…Alexander’s grief was uncontrollable…” Arrian states that “…for two whole days after Hephaestion’s death Alexander tasted no food and paid no attention in any way to his body needs but lay on his bed now crying lamentably, now in the silence of grief.” This event may have contributed to Alexander’s failing health and detached mental state during his final months. He died at the age of 32. Alexander’s sexuality has been the subject of speculation and controversy. It is thought that he was probably bisexual, which in his time was not controversial.

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