| Proud Pericles and Amazing Alexander
Harry Truman once said, “Men make history and not the other way around. In periods where there is no leadership, society stands still. Progress occurs when courageous, skillful leaders seize the opportunity to change things for the better.” Although there have been many powerful civilizations throughout history, one stands out as the most successful, the Greeks. The ancient Greeks had a civilization that lasted for a thousand years; they spread their culture and ideas throughout the known world. Historians have examined the Greeks for centuries to try and copy their successful society, and they have found that a number of factors contributed to their success. Among their many achievements, the Greeks made great advances in government, education, art, and architecture. All of these accomplishments were due to several strong leaders in Greece’s history. While Greece had many notable leaders in their history, two men stand out as being most important to the growth and prosperity of their empire – Pericles and Alexander the Great; they possessed intelligence, inspired their people, and left lasting legacies for Greece. Without the leadership of these two men, Greece’s empire would not have been as strong.
To begin, both Pericles and Alexander possessed great intelligence. For example, during his reign, Pericles had large, strong walls built around Athens. This was an excellent idea because it protected the Athenians from an attack by another city-state or country. Alexander was also smart; in fact, he was one of the best military geniuses that ever lived. He never once lost a battle in his entire life! This was key to his success as a leader because it allowed him to conquer other people and spread the Greek culture around the world.
In addition to being brainy, both leaders inspired their people. Pericles was able to inspire people using his words, as he was a gifted orator. Because he possessed great skills as a speaker, he could convince people to go along with his plans such as allowing more people to participate in government. On the other hand, Alexander inspired his people by being very brave. His bravery was known throughout the world. One example of his bravery was the tale of Bucephalus, his horse. Bucephalus was a strong and stubborn horse, and all the soldiers had failed to break him. Brave and bold, it was said that young Alexander was able to tame the horse that no one else could. His courage led his men to be very loyal to him and made his enemies afraid.
Lastly, the two men both left lasting legacies for their countries. Pericles, lover of the arts, began a program that rebuilt some of Greece’s most important buildings, including the Parthenon. Because of his love of art, the Golden Age of Athens began, and many wonderful artifacts were created. In contrast, Alexander the Great was responsible for spreading the Greek culture to the rest of the world. When Alexander conquered a city, he brought Greek art, architecture, education, and language to those people. Because of his influence, we have many things in our country today that came from Greece.
To conclude, these two men, Pericles and Alexander, were some of the most powerful leaders in world history. If it were not for them, Greece would not have been such an incredibly successful civilization, and our country and culture would look very different today. Their intelligence, inspiration, and legacies made Greece a stronger country. In fact, many people today study these men and their leadership skills. Truly, they both had a profound influence not only on Greece but on the entire world.