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Alexander the Great (Lancaster Pamphlets in Ancient History) by R. Stoneman

By R. Stoneman

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15f); a slightly different version is given in a fragment of Hegesias (FGrHist142F5), and it is not in Plutarch or Arrian. Hammond (1983. 124–8) argues that the source is Cleitarchus because of the connection with Achilles that is emphasised, and Bosworth (1988. 68) follows this view. Both Plutarch and Arrian (unlike the censorious Curtius) were inclined to paint a more glowing picture of Alexander, and so there is a probability that this gruesome story is true. From here Alexander made rapidly for Egypt.

Ten thousand mercenaries had got away to fight again; the king himself still lived and was at large; and the eastern satrapies still remained to give him their backing, the more readily as the conqueror came closer. It was uncertain exactly where Darius had gone. For the moment, Alexander’s only choice was to continue advancing until another pitched battle could decide the issue. It was to be almost two years before that third, and decisive, battle took place. 33 5 Son of Ammon Once he had crossed into Cilicia in summer 333, Alexander could no longer pose as the liberator of the Greeks.

Alexander promptly left for Illyria, and Olympias went away to Epirus. Whether they had any part in what followed can never be known, but plainly both were in a vulnerable position, which became the more exposed when Cleopatra gave birth to a son in summer 336. Bosworth (1971a) has suggested that there are dynastic implications in these events as well as the overt personal jealousies: Cleopatra, from an old Macedonian family, represented the élite of Lower Macedonia, while Olympias, an Epirot, was an outsider.

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