By A. B. Bosworth
During this research, Bosworth seems at Alexander the Great's actions in critical Asia and Pakistan, drawing a bleak photo of bloodbath and repression such as the Spanish conquest of Mexico. He investigates the evolution of Alexander's perspectives of empire and notion of common monarch, and files the illustration of Alexander via historians of antiquity. The ebook is directed to experts and basic readers alike.
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Extra resources for Alexander and the East: The Tragedy of Triumph
But the most arduous period was marked by the ghastly catalogue of repression beginning with the Sogdian revolt in 329, continuing with the invasion of India, the campaign of the Hydaspes, and the voyage down the Indus. 75 The result of this constant campaigning was to school the veterans of Alexander into the most adept and proficient fighters seen in the ancient world. 77 It is a detail recorded by a contemporary, Hieronymus of Cardia, who was wounded at the battle; and even if exaggerated the story will be substantially correct.
It underwrites the very unfriendly picture of court life which we owe to the contemporary pamphleteer, Ephippus: 'in his honour myrrh and other kinds of incense were consumed in smoke; a religious stillness and silence held all present in fear. '67 This overtly hostile portrait coheres with what may be read from Aristobulus' more encomiastic story, and what emerges is almost wholly black: a court in terror and a king lost in savage brooding. The terror was not always justified, nor was the king invariably merciless, but we can hardly question the prevailing atmosphere.
Could anything be more 'official'? Windows on the Truth 35 in 1552, five years after the death of the Conquistador (hence, in Arrian's terms, without fear or favour). 13 We have, then, the 'official' version of the primary actor, the polished literary version of a non-combatant, and the avowedly non-literary reminiscences of a junior participant towards the end of a long life. Ptolemy, Cleitarchus, and Aristobulus spring to mind as the counterparts from the Alexander period—the protagonist, the litterateur, and the aged memorialist.