Alexander the Great: The Story of an Ancient Life

Front Cover
Cambridge University Press, Sep 28, 2012 - Biography & Autobiography - 193 pages
Everything we know about Alexander comes from ancient sources, which agree unanimously that he was extraordinary and greater than everyday mortals. From his birth into a hypercompetitive world of royal women through his training under the eyes and fists of stern soldiers and the piercing intellect of Aristotle; through friendships, rivalries, conquests and negotiations; through acts of generosity and acts of murder, this book explains who Alexander was, what motivated him, where he succeeded (in his own eyes) and where he failed, and how he believed that he earned a new "mixed" nature combining the human and the divine. This book explains what made Alexander "Great" according to the people and expectations of his time and place and rejects modern judgments asserted on the basis of an implicit moral superiority to antiquity.

What people are saying - Write a review

User Review - Flag as inappropriate

I read nearly a dozen books on alexander. before my current favorite written by philip freeman. this book used to be my favorite, so it is still my second favvorite and will read it atleast once a year


The World of Alexanders Birth and His Education
Opportunities and Risks as a Teenager 340s
The Danger in Replacing a Murdered Father
The Opening Battles Against the Persian Army
Finding God in Egypt and Capturing the Riches
Winning the World as King of Asia 330 to 329
Murder Marriage and Mixing Customs
Victory and Frustration in India 327 to 326 BC
Remembering and Judging Alexander 323 BC
Suggested Readings

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2012)

Thomas R. Martin is the Jeremiah W. O'Connor, Jr Professor in Classics at the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts. He is the author of Ancient Greece and (with Ivy Sui-yuen) Herodotus and Sima Qian.

Christopher W. Blackwell is the Louis G. Forgione University Professor of Classics at Furman University in Greenville, South Carolina. He is the author of In the Absence of Alexander: Harpalus and the Failure of Macedonian Authority and (with Amy Hackney Blackwell) Mythology for Dummies.

Bibliographic information