Alexandr - The Greek World

Alexandr - The Greek World

On his black warhorse Bucephalas, Alexander, king of Macedonia, rode at the head of his army. Unlike most of his soldiers, he had no beard. His skin was fair and his light-coloured, wavy hair grew long and low on his neck. He was in India, and proud of the past few years. Finally, he had proved that he was the greatest general in history. And he now ruled the greatest empire that the world had ever seen.

His soldiers had joined him from many parts of the world. There were Thracians, Macedonians and Greeks from southeastern Europe; Scythians, Bactrians and Sogdians from central Asia; and Indians, riding their enormous, armoured war elephants. It seemed that no one could stop the march of this extraordinary army. Certainly not the Persians, who had once ruled much of Asia but were now completely defeated by Alexander the Great.
Two centuries earlier, the Persians' enemy in Europe was Greece, not Macedonia. In those days, and during Alexander's lifetime, Greece was not a country. It was a collection of independent city-states which shared a language, a religion and a way of life. Athens and Sparta were two of the most famous city- states, but there were almost 1,500 others. They were not only found in the area that we call Greece today. Greek people lived in coastal areas all around the Mediterranean and the Black Sea. Naples in Italy, Marseille in France and Izmir in Turkey all started life as Greek city-states.

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