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Michael Grant
From Alexander to Cleopatra and The Hellenistic World


[1] "Philip II of Macedonia (359-336), who made his country into a major power, virtually controlling the mainland Greek city-states, intended to lead his and their forces against the two-centuries-old Persian (Achaemenid) empire, which ruled over huge territories extending from the Aegean to Egypt and central Asia. Philip's motives were mixed: revenge for the Persian invasion of Macedonia and Greece in the previous century, annoyance because the contemporary Persians had at times aided the king's own Greek opponents, a desire to wipe out the only large-scale potential enemy to the Macedonians that was still in existence - and pure lust for expansion." [p.1]

[2] "In 334 BC, at the head of 40,000 Macedonian and Greek troops, he (Alexander) crossed the Hellespont (Dardanelles) and confronted the Persian advanced forces on the river Granicus (Can Cayi), winning a victory which enabled him to conquer western and southern Asia Minor." [p.1]

[3] "His motives for undertaking these vast enterprises seem to have been mixed. As a Macedonian, he wanted to show that he could do better than any of the Greeks, who considered his people barbarians." [p.4]

[4] "The loyalest of all the successors was Eumenes of Cardia, not a Macedonian but a Greek, which meant that even his first-rate generalship could not gain him the continued support of Macedonian soldiery." [p.101]

[5] "Alexander's various successors, to whom Greece was still the most coveted prize, held two conflicting opinions of the city-states (with many nuances in between): that they were still free allies (a view upheld ostensibly, and perhaps genuinely, by the philhellenic Antigonus I Monophtholmos), and, conversely, that they were little better than subjects (the attitude of Antipater and Cassander). [p.105]

[6] "The Hellenistic kings talked a lot about 'liberating' cities, which (as the realistic Polybius remarked) generally meant seizing them from their rivals - and only rarely signified their exemption from tax. However, the monarchs, for the most part, soon stopped proclaiming that all Greeks must be free, and instead offered 'freedom' as a reward or prize for loyalty to themselves, though this was often a matter of prestige rather than substance, since such freedom, in effect, did not make much difference to the cities one way or the other." [p.106]



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