Alexander The Great Essay

1079 words - 4 pages

No person can deny that Alexander the Great accomplished many things for the Greek Hellenistic period. The controversy comes to play when deciphering just how great of an impact he had. One historian, William W. Tarn, holds Alexander the Great to be a man who changed the course of history. In one document that Tarn wrote he claimed, "He (Alexander) lifted the civilized world out of one groove and set it in another; he started a new epoch." Alexander started the process of unification world wide, expanded trade and created more opportunity for all people. The issues that he addressed and solved for the time sparked no question, but whether they would have happened with or with out Alexander provokes incongruity amongst historians. Tarn stretched the impact that Alexander the Great had on the course of history. Tarn says that Alexander lifted the civilization into an entirely new groove. Accelerating the old path in a new direction is a bit more appropriate when addressing the influence Alexander had over Greek history. Towards the end, the Hellenic period of Greece had begun to transform itself and concentrate on different issues. The inhabitants of Greece took action to move forward before Alexander the Great came into existence. Tarn even said it himself in his own document. He wrote, "Even if much of the work was done by his successors, he broke the path; with out him they would not have been." Tarn gave too much of the credit to one individual of the time. Alexander received help from many people; he did not accomplish his dreams alone. He probably derived the credit from some historians with the fact that he was a great leader. He made an example of himself for people to follow. He was a hands on leader who gained the respect of his followers. He knew the best ways of implementing things. "He greatly enlarged the bounds of knowledge and of human endeavor, and gave to Greek science and Greek civilization a scope and an opportunity such as they had never possessed." It is true that Alexander brought to the people, knowledge, unity, science and common language. But one must take in the key word used, and that is "enlarged." He didn't start an epoch; he expanded on it and expedited the process. Because of his great leadership skills, he took the ideas, dreams and goals of many people and ran with it. Alexander's greatest feat and also main concern involved unification of the population. He not only wanted to unify the city states of Greece but he even went as far as India. He wanted an empire. This was truly with out question different from the leaders before him during the Hellenic era of Greece. The idea of Greek supremacy was amongst the citizens of Greek city-states. Alexander wanted to throw that idea out. This is one of the reasons that Alexander found it necessary to create the common language known as Koine. Koine was in fact Greek based because Alexander did have a profound appreciation of the Greek culture, but the...

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