Alexander the Great, also known as the King of Macedonia, was a famous Greek king who came to the throne in the year 336BC. He is widely regarded as being one of the most successful military commanders in all of history and was responsible for changing the face of the ancient world. See the fact file below for more facts about Alexander the Great:
- Alexander the Great’s real name is Alexander III of Macedon.
- He was born in July 356BC in Pella, the ancient capital city of Macedonia. His exact birth date is unknown as the Ancient Greeks followed their own calendar. Alexander the Great was born in the Greek month of Hekatombaion.
- Alexander the Great became King of Macedonia in 336BC at the age of 20. His father, King Philip II was assassinated, leaving the throne for his son Alexander to take.
- When Alexander took the throne he ordered for all of his rivals to the throne to be killed to ensure no-one would try to take his new position.
- During his lifetime, Alexander the Great was also known as the Pharaoh of Egypt, the King of Persia and the King of Asia as a result of his conquests.
- Alexander the Great was taught by the famous philosopher Aristotle between the age of 13 to 16 years old.
- When Alexander took to the throne in Greece he commanded the Greek army to continue his father’s legacy and try to take control of the Persian Empire. The army was successful and after 10 years of battles, Alexander overthrew the King of Persia (Darius III) and took on his title.
- The Battle of Gaugamela (now in Northern Iraq) is one of Alexander the Great’s most famous battles.
- In 326BC, Alexander the Great invaded India, declaring that he wanted to conquer the entire world (the Ancient Greeks thought that India was the end of the Earth). However, many people died and his army decided to turn back.
- Alexander the Great founded more than 70 cities in the ancient world. He named more than 20 of them ‘Alexandria’ after himself.
- In total, Alexander the Great led his army 11,000 miles and created an Empire that covered over 20 million square miles.
- He was named Alexander ‘the Great’ because he and his army had never been defeated.
- Alexander the Great was married three times during his life: a girl called Roxana whom he loved and then two Persian princesses named Stateira and Parysatis whom he married for political reasons. He also had a harem of women.
- It’s thought that Alexander the Great produced two heirs in the form of two sons although this fact has never been confirmed.
- His invasion techniques were so successful that military academies around the world still teach some of his tactics.
- It’s believed that Alexander the Great died of fever in Babylon in June 323BC. He died in the palace of Nebuchadnezzar II and was 32 years old.
- Even today, historians are still unsure as to what exactly caused Alexander the Great’s death. Some think that he may have been poisoned whereas others think he may have developed typhoid or malaria.
- After his death, Alexander the Great’s body was placed in a gold sarcophagus filled with honey, which was then placed in a gold casket
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