According to an ancient myth, the mythical gorgon emerged from
the sea from time to time and asked the captain of a ship:
"Is Alexander the Great still alive or not?" If the captain answered yes, then he was free to go, but if the
captain answered no, then the mermaid made the sea rough and the ship was sunk.
Alexander the Great still lives in the hearts of Hellenes.
He is considered to be the best of Greeks, a phenomenon and the most famous person ever born.
He is the first man who united all Hellenes, spread Hellenism to east and west, that is why the post-Alexander period was
named Hellenistic period.
He is the man who made all the people speak the Greek language and so he set the grounds for the expansion of Greek
Arrianos (a Greek historian and philosopher of the 2nd century AD, born in Nicomedia of Asia Minor) assures that Alexandros was proud of being the leader of all Hellenes, proud of the fact that he liberated all the Hellenic cities in Mikra Asia (Asia Minor) from the persian yoke, taking revenge for all persian crimes commited against his compatriots, proud of having spread the greek ideas, culture and virtues to the countries he conquered. Christianism was based on the Greek language. In 49 A.D. Saint Paul, passing through Macedonia, preached the Word of God at Philippi, Thessaloniki and Veria in Greek as his audiences were Greeks. His epistles to the Thessalonians and the Philippians, as well as those addressing the Corinthians, were written in Greek as they were addressed to greek audience. The Old and the New Testament were also written in Greek. The use of greek language made the Roman empire pass under greek control after the 6th century A.D. Alexander founded more than 70 cities in Asia and Africa. Alexandria of Egypt became the greatest city in the world, a center of mathematics, mechanics, geometry, astronomy, geography and all the knowledge of the ancient world was securely kept in its famous library.
First we have to examine the origin of ancient Macedonians. Unfortunately, American and European politicians use sick and filthy methods in order to serve their interests, they distort history, so we have to defend the historical truth, before we continue with the life of Alexander. The Balkans is an unstable area, and the Great Powers have always tried to maintain this status, so that they can interfere in this area. The USA destroyed the only independent European state, Yugoslavia, and created the slavic state of Skopje as protectorate, giving it the same name as communist Tito had chosen, with the intention of claiming lands by the Aegean Sea. This communist policy, which was supported even by Greek communists (1944-1949), had then been condemned by the USA. Now Americans support Slavic fantasies which distort history claiming the macedonian identity for Skopje.
Slavs invaded Macedonia in 6th century A.D., 1000 years after Alexander's birth. They were a barbaric pagan tribe that was converted to Christianity by Patriarch Photius. It was Byzantium that enlightened Slavs with the lights of civilization. Slavs settled in Macedonia, as well as in other Greek regions, but they did not alter the ethnic physiognomy of the region. The "Tactics" of Leon VI the Wise, in the beginning of the 10th c., report characteristically: "My late father and emperor Basil had persuaded the Slavic tribes to change their ancient customs, and hellenised them, and subjected them following the Roman (Byzantine) system, liberated them from their leaders, honoured them by the baptism and trained them to fight against people at war with the Romans (Byzantines)". As Paul Lemerle writes: "Byzantium christianized, civilized and assimilated these Slavs, making them Greeks. And this is one of the most impressive victories of the Greek genius". During the first siege of Thessaloniki by the Turks (1383-1387), Emperor Manuel Palaeologus, in his speech "Admonition to the people of Thessaloniki", urges the inhabitants to fight to death, fot this is what their historical tradition decrees: "because we are Romans (= Byzantines, Greeks) and our country is the one of Philip and Alexander". This means that he, as well as the inhabitants, were conscious of the historical continuity of Hellenism and of their Greek origin which had its roots in ancient times.
All the inscriptions on monuments, coins and other artifacts in Macedonia and also in Pakistan, India and Iran have the Greek language on them. There are no ancient monuments with a different language. An example is the inscribed base of a statue of Thessaloniki, of the 2nd c. B.C. Thessaloniki was Alexander's sister and the second in power city of Byzantium. The funny thing is that Slavs from Sqopia call our city with the barbaric name Solun. They don't call her with the name of Alexander's sister, they don't call her with the Macedonian name Thessaloniki, because simply they are not Macedonians. They have to seach in Asia to discover their roots.
The Macedonian kingdom, was founded by Hellenic emigrants from Argos. The Macedonians were a Dorian tribe, according to the testimony of Herodotus. Their country was cut off from the rest of Greece, to the south by a long chain of mountain ranges -Olympus (the Holy mountain of ancient Greeks) and to the west by the Pindos range, and lived until the 6th century by the teachings of the Homeric epic. Aegae (Edessa) became the first capital. The Macedonias worshiped the 12 Olympian gods as the rest of the Greeks. The name Macednos is homeric word and means tall. All the kings of Macedonia had Greek names. Alexander's name is Greek. The word "Alexandros" is produced from the prefix alex(=protector) and the word andros(=man) meaning "he who protects from men". The prefix "alex" can be found in many Greek words today (alexiptoto=parachute, alexisfairo=bulletproof - all these words have the meaning of protection). Philip's name (Philippos) is also Greek. It is produced from the prefix Philo(=friendly to something) and the word ippos(=horse) meaning the man who is friendly to horses. The prefix "philo" and the word "ippos" are also found in many words of Greek origin today (philosophy,philology, hippodrome,hippocampus).
Herodotus and Thucydides, both of whom were aware of the genealogy of the Macedonian Argead or Temenids dynasty, made Perdiccas I the head of the family, and moreover attributed to him the foundation of the state (7th century BC). The Macedonians, in 492 B.C., became Persian subjects, retaining, however, their own kings, who accepted the position of tributaries. Amyntas I, who appears to have died about 498 B.C., was succeeded by his son, Alexander I., king at the time of the great invasion of Xerxes. According to Herodotus, Alexander I, the Philhellene, contributed to the defeat of the Persian forces of Xerxes and Mardonios, giving information to the Athenians and telling them that "I am Greek and I dont want to see the Greeks enslaved". Under Alexander I, the independent Macedonian principalities of west and north Macedonia were united around the central authority, recognizing the primacy of the Temenids king. The entry of the state into the history of southern Greece was sealed by the acceptance of Alexander I by the hellanodikai as a competitor in the Olympic games (probably those of 496 BC), in which, as we know, only Greeks were allowed to participate. Perdiccas II, the first-born son of Alexander I, who ruled for forty years (454-412/13 BC), proved himself a skillful diplomat and a wily leader, astute in his decisions and flexible in his alliances, and set as the aim of his diplomacy the preservation of the territorial integrity of his kingdom. The completion of the internal tasks that Perdiccas II was prevented from accomplishing by the external situation fell to his successor, Archelaos I, he is credited by the ancient sources and modern scholarship alike with great sagacity and with sweeping changes in state administration, the army and commerce. During his reign, the defense of the country was organized, cultural and artistic contacts with southern Greece were extended, and the foundations were laid of a road network. A man of culture himself, the king entertained in his new palace at Pella, to where he had transferred the capital from Aigai, poets and tragedians, and even the great Euripides, who wrote his tragedies Archelaos and The Bacchae there; he invited brilliant painters - the name of Zeuxis is mentioned - and at Dion in Pieria, the Olympia of Macedonia, he founded the "Olympia", a religious festival with musical and athletic competitions in honor of Olympian Zeus and the Muses. By 399 BC, the year in which he was murdered, Archelaos I had succeeded in converting Macedonia into one of the strongest Greek powers of his period.
Amyntas III, took the throne in 392. Although his reign was filled with anarchy and intrigue, he successfully brought unity to Macedonia. His death in 369 left three lawful sons, of whom the first two, Alexander II and Perdiccas III, ruled only briefly. In 359 Amyntas' third son, Philip II, assumed control in the name of Perdiccas' infant heir; having restored order he made himself king (reigned 359-336) and raised Macedonia to a predominant position throughout the whole of Greece.
Philippos II (382 BC - 336 BC)
Philip himself at the age of fifteen he was sent at Thebes, the leading city (with Athens) of this decade (370-360 BC), where the great Pelopidas and Epaminondas, the most inventive tacticians of all Greek generals until then, were in charge of the best army in Greece. These were probably the most formative years of Philip's education. When he returned to Macedonia his brother Perdiccas soon found him ready for a command. Philip came to the throne suddenly and unexpectedly in 359, when Perdiccas was killed meeting an Illyrian invasion. The Illyrians prepared to close in; the Paeonians were raiding from the north, and two claimants to the throne were supported by foreign powers. In this crisis Philip showed a good sense of priorities by buying off his dangerous neighbours and, with a treaty, ceding Amphipolis to Athens. He used the time gained in military preparations. The army that later conquered Persia and the decisive innovations in arms, the sarissa, a 6 meter pike, tactics, phalanx (trained infantry men), engineers, Hetairoi (homeric word meaning noblemen bodyguards) and training were developed all through his reign. In 358 he invaded Paeonia, and then he defeated the Illyrians decisively, in a battle that already suggests a master of war. The next year his marriage with Olympias, the Molossian princess of Epirus (the mother of Alexander the Great), helped to stabilize his western frontier. Theves and Athens were engaged in the "Sacred War" Hieros Polemos, against Phocians who had occupied lands from Delphi. So Philip recaptured Amphipolis, the strategic key securing the eastern frontier; and in 356 he took the west Thracian Crenides (renamed by him Philippi), a place newly founded to exploit new finds of silver and gold in Mount Pangaeum. He then conquered Thessaly (352) and Olynthos (348). Accepted as head of the league against the impious Phocians, Philip in a few weeks brought the "Sacred War" to an and, obtaining as his reward the seat in the Amphictyonic Council of which the Phocians were deprived, a seat which of course was rewarded only to Greeks. Philip failed to conquer Perinthus (later called Heraclea) and Byzantium, and the Byzantines devoted their victory to goddess Ecate, who had as symbol the crescent (which later was used by Ottoman in their flag).
Philippos' dream was to unite all Hellenes and liberate all Hellenic cities of the Minor Asia coasts, from Persian yoke. Isocrates encouraged him to realize this Greek dream, while Demosthenes saw Philip now as a bar to Athenian greatness and a threat to its freedom and existence. But Philip was more Greek than Demosthenes who remained just Athenian. The decisive battle would take place in Chaeronea, in 339. Demosthenes convinced Thebans to fight against Macedonians. Philip crushed his enemies and the seventeen years old prince Alexander excelled in the battle. All members of the Hieros Lohos (Sacred Band) of Thebans fell. By winning this battle he had won the war. Thebes had to admit a Macedonian garrison, and its democratic constitution was replaced by a pro-Macedonian government. Athens suffered neither invasion of its territory nor interference with its democracy. Philip wanted to be seen not as tyrant but as leader. Greek cities had never succeded to be united, Greeks had never created a strong state and all times they suffered of civil wars. According to Diodorus of Sicily, Philip was the first to envisage a great Greek state and that is why he managed to gather representatives from all Hellenic polis (except Sparta) in Corinth (League of Corinth - 337) and they swore first to recognize Philip as leader of Greeks (Hegemon of Hellenes) for this purpose, and second to preserve and perpetuate a general peace. Whould the proud Greek cities accept a barbarian as their leader?
In 336 Philip had an army of 15000 men sent into Minor Asia under Parmenion and Attalos,
to begin with the liberation of Greek coastal cities. But his last marriage
to the Macedonian Cleopatra, niece of Attalos, led to a final break with Olympias, his queen,
who left the country accompanied by the crown prince Alexander. All started when Attalos during the ceremony wished to the
king: "I wish you a strong legitimate heir of the throne". Then Alexander with his sword at hand demanded an
apology to the insult. Philip who was very drunk attempted to attack to his son but he fell down. Alexander and his mother
ran away and found refuge to her brother, Alexander king of Epirus.
Later Philip and his son were reconciled, but with the preparations far advanced for the crossing into Asia, at the grand
celebration of his daughter Cleopatra's marriage
to Alexander of Epirus, Philip was assassinated by Pausanias, a young Macedonian noble. Philip had many enemies and
suspicions fell to everybody. Persians, Athenians, Thebans, could have organized this plot and also Olympias had reasons to
murder her husband. So ended, unworthily, the first who had envisaged an Hellenic empire.
He had prepared the ground for his son giving him a powerful kingdom and an excellent greek
education, to conquer the world.
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