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Hephaistion’s death

  • 324 BC
  • Video clip #37

Draw symbols of these 10 things onto a chart

  • Hephaistion died in Ecbatana, 324 BC from excessive drinking. Hephaistion supported all Alexander’s policies. He was second in command.
  • Alexander was in so much grief that he:
  • Hanged Hephaistion’s doctor
  • Lay for 3 days without food or water
  • Cut his hair – like Achilles did when patroclus died
  • Destroyed the temple of Asclepius (god of health and medicine)
  • Sacred fires were extinguished throughout the empire (Persian custom for a King’s death)
  • Made a decree of general mourning throughout the east
  • Commissioned a memorial for Hephaistion at Babylon
  • Sent an embassy to Siwah to consult his father Ammon to ask how Hephaistion should be honoured. The response was: as a hero.
  • Asked the Athenians to create a hero cult for Hephaistion
  • Ordered large, expensive shrines to be built in Alexandria (Egypt) and the island of Pharos

Babylon

  • Ishtar Gate, Babylon
  • Charles LeBrun,
  • The Entry of Alexander into Babylon, c. 1664
  • Achaemenid silver
  • Bull rhyton

Request for deification

  • While at Babylon, envoys came from a number of Greek States, wearing crowns. They approached Alexander and crowned him with golden crowns, honouring him as a god.
  • Plutarch says Alexander wrote to the Greeks asking them to give him divine honours
  • Reaction from Greek states:
  • Sparta
  • “Since Alexander wants to be a god, let him be a god” (Danis)
  • Athens
  • Debated the issue

The Greek states all agreed to give him the honours in Spring 323

  • The Greek states all agreed to give him the honours in Spring 323
  • This meant they recognised Alexander as divine
  • For Greeks, it was impossible for a mortal to become a god, eg. Herakles was only ever considered a demi-god
  • Why would he asked to be deified?
  • Alexander wanted to be god of his Empire, because he thought being the Great King of Persia proved he was worthy
  • Alex was encouraged to believe in himself from a young age. Olympias told him he was son of Zeus
  • He emphasised his heroic lineage – his decent from Achilles (mother’s side) and Heracles (father’s side)
  • He believed he was son of Ammon Ra after visiting the oracle at Siwah

Alexander’s death

  • There were Warnings and superstitions before his death:
  • when he reached Babylon, priests of Marduk begged him not to enter – they had received an oracle from the gods that if he did, he would suffer misfortune
  • Alex disregarded their advice,
  • When alex was sailing in the marshes, his hat & diadem (crown) was blown off. They landed near the tombs of the dead Assyrain kings. A sailor swam out to get it and to keep it dry, put it on his head. He was given one talent for helping. But then was executed because prophets said it was bad luck that the sailor had worn the diadem(crown).
  • One day when Alex had left the royal throne at Babylon and man sat on it. The prophets also demanded that he be executed

Alexander’s death

  • June 10, in the palace of Nebuchadnezzar, In Babylon, 323 BC
  • He was aged 32
  • His exact cause of death is unknown
    • Maybe pneumonia, malaria, alcoholic poisoning, or food poisoning
    • No one will ever know for sure
  • His troops all paid their last respects to him when they realised he was deteriorating

After Alexander

  • After Alexander died, his generals jockeyed for power and by 275 they had divided up his kingdom into three large states
  • Greece
  • Egypt
  • Asia minor
  • The period of Alexander and his successors is called the Hellenistic period to reflect the broad influence of Greek culture beyond Greece’s borders

LEGACY

  • Brilliant general and leader
    • Seems at time to be a hero come to life from one of Homer’s poems
  • Major contribution was the destruction of the Persian Empire
    • Opened the door for the penetration of Greek culture into the Middle East
  • Big weakness was lack of concern for administrative matters
    • Liked to conquer, not consolidate
    • Liked to fight, not govern
    • Empire died with him as a result
      • Virtually guaranteed by absence of any sort of centralized administrative structure
  • C:\Documents and Settings\JRadich\My Documents\my content off school network\from ayesha\iron maiden - alexander the great.mp3
  • 1.56minutes

Alexander The Great[356 - 323 BC] My son, ask for thyself another kingdom, For that which I leave is too small for thee. Near to the east, in a part of ancient Greece, In an ancient land called Macedonia, Was born a son to Philip of Macedon, The legend his name was Alexander. At the age of nineteen, he became the Macedon king, And swore to free all of Asia Minor, By the Aegian sea in 334 BC, He utterly beat the armies of Persia. Chorus: Alexander the Great, His name struck fear into hearts of men, Alexander the Great, Became a legend ‘mongst mortal men.

  • Alexander The Great[356 - 323 BC] My son, ask for thyself another kingdom, For that which I leave is too small for thee. Near to the east, in a part of ancient Greece, In an ancient land called Macedonia, Was born a son to Philip of Macedon, The legend his name was Alexander. At the age of nineteen, he became the Macedon king, And swore to free all of Asia Minor, By the Aegian sea in 334 BC, He utterly beat the armies of Persia. Chorus: Alexander the Great, His name struck fear into hearts of men, Alexander the Great, Became a legend ‘mongst mortal men.

King Darius the third, defeated fled Persia, The Scythians fell by the river Jaxartes, Then Egypt fell to the Macedon king as well, And he founded the city called Alexandria. By the Tigris River, he met King Darius again, And crushed him again in the battle of Arbela, Entering Babylon and Susa, treasures he found, Took Persepolis, the capital of Persia.

  • King Darius the third, defeated fled Persia, The Scythians fell by the river Jaxartes, Then Egypt fell to the Macedon king as well, And he founded the city called Alexandria. By the Tigris River, he met King Darius again, And crushed him again in the battle of Arbela, Entering Babylon and Susa, treasures he found, Took Persepolis, the capital of Persia.
  • Chorus: Alexander the Great, His name struck fear into hearts of men, Alexander the Great, Became a God amongst mortal men. A Phrygian king had bound a chariot yoke, And Alexander cut the Gordian knot, And legend said that who untied the knot; He would become the master of Asia.

`Hellenism he spread far and wide, The Macedonian learned mind, Their culture was a western way of life, He paved the way for Christianity. Marching on, marching on. The battle weary marching side by side, Alexander’s army line by line, They wouldn’t follow him to India, Tired of the combat, pain and the glory. Chorus: Alexander the Great, His name struck fear into hearts of men, Alexander the Great, He died of fever in Babylon.

  • `Hellenism he spread far and wide, The Macedonian learned mind, Their culture was a western way of life, He paved the way for Christianity. Marching on, marching on. The battle weary marching side by side, Alexander’s army line by line, They wouldn’t follow him to India, Tired of the combat, pain and the glory. Chorus: Alexander the Great, His name struck fear into hearts of men, Alexander the Great, He died of fever in Babylon.

Alexander Essays

  • Candidates who focused on the specific requirements of questions (for example, by highlighting or underlining key words) tended to answer questions more directly and accurately.
  • Unsuccessful Candidates sometimes showed evidence of learning, but were not able to apply their knowledge carefully. It is particularly important in 90513, the essay standard, that material is shaped to fit the question(s) set.

Candidates who achieved this standard most commonly demonstrated the following skills and / or knowledge:

  • ability to answer in essay format: they used the planning page and provided a structured response, although sometimes expression was stilted or weak
  • had sufficient understanding of the topic chosen to respond to most points adequately, particularly the bullet points, although often an aspect of the question was overlooked or omitted
  • ability to recall sufficient topic knowledge to back up general statements to some extent
  • some familiarity with secondary texts and either a basic knowledge of primary sources or at least an awareness of source material.

Candidates who did not achieve this standard lacked some or all of the skills and knowledge required for Achievement. They also commonly:

  • • answered less than half the question, providing little appropriate detail
  • • failed to structure their essay and had poor language skills
  • • misunderstood or did not read the question carefully or wrote off the topic to fill out their essay with irrelevant detail
  • lacked sufficient knowledge of topic content to sustain an essay response
  • were unfamiliar with primary source material or unable to integrate primary source evidence into their answer.

In addition to the skills and knowledge required for Achievement, candidates who achieved the standard with Merit or Excellence commonly:

  • wrote a well organised essay and expressed themselves fluently and clearly
  • addressed all aspects of the question and showed a comprehensive knowledge of the topic content
  • integrated clear, pertinent references to primary and often secondary source material into their argument
  • explained events and processes, but also went on to analyse the material they were addressing.

Let’s practice!

  • TOPIC ONE: ALEXANDER THE GREAT
  • Answer ONE of the following questions in essay format.
  • You should:
  • • demonstrate knowledge of important historical figures, ideas, and events
  • • provide evidence from primary source material* to support your argument.
  • *Primary source material could include literary, art historical, and archaeological evidence.

EITHER:

  • EITHER:
  • (a) The second, and decisive, battle between Alexander the Great and Darius III took place in 331 BC, at Gaugamela, on an extensive plain in what is now modern Iraq.
  • Discuss:
  • • the challenges faced by Alexander at this battle
  • • the tactics that he used to achieve victory
  • • the reasons for his failure to kill or capture Darius.
  • What were the consequences of defeat at Gaugamela for Darius?
  • OR:
  • (b) “The Spartan Damis said, ‘As Alexander wants to be a god, let him be one.’ ” (Plutarch)
  • Discuss the religious beliefs that Alexander may have held about his own superhuman nature, with particular reference to:
  • • his legendary ancestors
  • • his consultation of the oracle at the oasis of Siwah
  • • the visit of the sacred envoys to Babylon in 323 BC.
  • What was the political and / or military significance of Alexander’s attitude towards his own superhuman, or divine, status?
  • OR:
  • (c) Despite Aristotle’s teaching that the Greeks were vastly superior to barbarians, Alexander chose to take up a number of Persian customs and ceremonies.
  • Discuss:
  • • the Persian practices adopted by Alexander, with particular reference to court ritual and the act of proskynesis
  • • the reasons for Alexander’s use of Persian customs and ceremonies
  • • the impact that the adoption of these practices had on Alexander’s relationship with the historian Callisthenes.
  • To what extent was Alexander’s ‘orientalism’ limited to ceremonial court practices?

Tips for Alexander essays

  • Introductions should start with an interesting, original thought or sentence or question about Alexander with reference to the question. You should then refer to all parts of the question and hints at the stance that you will take in the essay
  • Each paragraph should address a different aspect of the question
  • The first paragraph should discuss the setting – explain where Alexander is in his journey, what year it is and what has happened before this event
  • The next paragraph should begin to answer the first part of the question – as in English, you need to have a discussion point or statement, give an explanation about what this means and why, then provide quotes from Primary (Arrian, plutarch etc.)or Secondary (J.R Hamilton/ Paul Artus) sources to back up what you are saying.
  • Each paragraph should follow the format above until you have addressed all parts of the question
  • The conclusion needs to summarise each point that you have discussed and make connections to the question to show that you have answered it. A good way to finish is to leave the reader with a final thought or a quote or a summary of Alexander as a person and how he has made a lasting impact.

Let’s create an essay plan

  • Despite Aristotle’s teaching that the Greeks were vastly superior to barbarians, Alexander chose to take up a number of Persian customs and ceremonies.
  • Discuss:
  • • the Persian practices adopted by Alexander, with particular reference to court ritual and the act of proskynesis
  • • the reasons for Alexander’s use of Persian customs and ceremonies
  • • the impact that the adoption of these practices had on Alexander’s relationship with the historian Callisthenes.
  • To what extent was Alexander’s ‘orientalism’ limited to ceremonial court practices?


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