Saturday, December 4, 2010

Alexander the Great

Tammy: Hey Folks! Welcome to The Past Times. I’m you’re host, Tammy Turnback. Today, on our show, we have a very famous general from ancient Greece, Alexander the Great!

Alexander: The one and only!

Tammy: You led your army all over the known world, made them brave ice covered mountains, scorching desserts, and bloody battles, I have one question, what were you thinking?

Alexander: I wanted to conquer the world, and I did.

Tammy: Well almost all the world.

Alexander: Yes, my men were such wimps!

Tammy: And you named every city you established after yourself, Alexandria!

Alexander: Except for one. I named the last one after my horse, Bucephalus. The city was in India and I named it Bucephala.

Tammy: But the most famous was in Egypt.

Alexander: Egypt was also the easiest place to fight too. All I had to do was go into the temple of Ra, get proclaimed the son of Ra, and I was Pharaoh.

Tammy: The story that you were the son of a god didn’t start in Egypt, did it?

Alexander: No, my mom, Olympias, got mad at my dad, Philip II of Macedonia, because he wasn’t being true to her, so she came up with the story that Zeus had visited her in a lightning bolt and that he was my real dad.

Tammy: Wow! Do you believe it?

Alexander: It made it easier for me to conquer the world, that’s for sure!

Tammy: How did you get your horse, Bucephalus?

Alexander: When I was about ten, Dad was looking for a horse to buy, and was looking at Bucephalus, however would not let anyone mount him. I was there with them and soon figured out the problem.

Tammy: What was it?

Alexander: I’m getting there; I told my dad that if I could mount, he would he would have to pay me the price of the horse.

Tammy: What did he say?

Alexander: If I broke my neck, I would have to pay him the price of the horse. I went up to Bucephalus and after turning his face toward the sun, mounted him with ease.

Tammy: But what was the problem?

Alexander: The horse was afraid of his own shadow. The thing spooked him out the wazoo.

Tammy: Oh that’s funny!

Alexander: And I won! Afterwards, he was always the horse I rode into war.

Tammy: What kind of schooling did you have as a child?

Alexander: Only the best! When I was seven, dad got Leonidas. Boy, was he strict! He thought my luxurious lifestyle would make me lazy and spoiled. He had me march for miles at night, to make me hungry for breakfast, and when breakfast came, he gave me almost nothing. He would even search my room to make sure I hadn’t hidden any food there!

Tammy: Did you like him?

Alexander: Not his view of food, but he did teach me some vital battle skills, I am grateful for that.

Tammy: Was he your only teacher?

Alexander: No, later on dad invited Aristotle to Pella to teach me and a bunch of my friends.

Tammy: Pella?

Alexander: The capital city of Macedonia

Tammy: What did Aristotle teach you?

Alexander: Literature, philosophy, law… My favorite subject was science. Later, when I was on my battle expeditions, I brought scientists along. They made maps and collected samples of plants and animals. They also kept detailed records of things we saw on our travels.

Tammy: What did you do in your free time?

Alexander: I rode horses, practiced music, and went hunting.

Tammy: Anything else?

Alexander: Not that I can remember.

Tammy: So Aristotle was your favorite teacher?

Alexander: Of course, the two of us never lost touch.

Tammy: Did you have any other lasting friendships?

Alexander: Oh yes, I had several. My best friend was Hephaestion; he later went along with me on most of my travels.

Tammy: When was your first taste of war?

Alexander: That would have been in 338 BC, Bucephelus and I led the cavalry against the Thebans. At the same time Dad was leading the infantry against the Athenians.

Tammy: Did you win?

Alexander: Both city-states were soon defeated.

Tammy: How did the other city-states react?

Alexander: The next year they made an agreement with us. We promised that if one of us needed help, the others would help. The Spartans were the only ones who refused to agree. Dad was now the leader of the combined army of almost all of Greece!

Tammy: Did you like it?

Alexander: I would often complain that if my dad kept up at the rate he was conquering the world, there would soon be nothing for me to defeat.

Tammy: Well, you still found plenty to fight on your own.

Alexander: It helped that he died young though.

Tammy: What happened?

Alexander: For a while after our victories, Dad and I got along fairly well, but then he met Cleopatra.

Tammy: Didn’t she live after your time?

Alexander: wrong Cleopatra. Mom and I didn’t like her, but Dad decided he wanted to marry her. Rulers did that back then. Mom and I left Pella for a year, and not long after we came back, Dad was assassinated.

Tammy: By who?

Alexander: By one of his trusted bodyguards.

Tammy: And you became king?

Alexander: That’s right. The rest of Greece tried to rebel at that point, but I soon showed him who was boss.

Tammy: And then you conquered the world.

Alexander: I did.

Tammy: Some of the kings you treated differently from others. Why?

Alexander: Depended on how they handled the defeat. Darius ran away, so I treated him as the dog he was. Porus, the Indian king, asked to be treated “as a king”, so I let him rule over a large section of my empire.

Tammy: After you defeated the Persians, you started acting as Darius had. Why?

Alexander: It was more fun. However I accidentally killed some of my closer friends while drunk when they tried to rebuke me.

Tammy: But … they were your friends!

Alexander: I know; I felt terrible afterwards, but my point was made.

Tammy: Don’t mess with the king.

Alexander: Exactly.

Tammy: You also married three Persian girls.

Alexander: Roxanne was the only one who produced an heir, and the child wasn’t born until after my death.

Tammy: That brings up the question, why did you die.

Alexander: Old wounds … some people think I had contracted Malaria.

Tammy: but in any case, you died.

Alexander: And my friends split my kingdom up. Just as those Jews said they would.

Tammy: Jews?

Alexander: Seams that they had had a prophet named Daniel who had had a vision in which he saw all the major world rulers. It sounded good so I used the symbol they had associated with me as my own from then on.

Tammy: And they gave up without a fight?

Alexander: They did.

Tammy: Well it looks as if that’s all the time we have for today. I’m your host, Tammy Turnback, this has The Past Times, and we have had the famous Greek General, Alexander the Great!

Alexander: Thank you, thank you, thank you very much!

Written 10/21/2009

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