Macedonian Imperialism and the Hellenization of the East

Macedonian Imperialism and the Hellenization of the East

Macedonian Imperialism and the Hellenization of the East

Macedonian Imperialism and the Hellenization of the East

Excerpt

The dagger-blow which struck down Philip of Macedon at the end of the year 386, came near to shaking the power of the kingdom and making an end of the plans for war in Asia which, in the previous year, the King had caused the confederate Greeks to accept as a national conflict. But the youth of barely twenty, who was to be Alexander the Great, was able to take up an inheritance which might have slipped from feebler hands. On the pretext of punishing the murderers and their accomplices, he made away with suspect persons and caused his rights to be acknowledged in Thessaly, at Delphi, and at Corinth, where the representatives of the states belonging to the Confederation nominated him president of the alliance and Commander-in-Chief of the Hellenes. A victorious expedition against the Barbarians, who were threatening his Northern frontier, took him to the Danube. Meanwhile, Greece was restless; a thunderbolt of a campaign, ending with the sack of Thebes, restored obedience and peace. Alexander could then turn his forces against the Great King. In ten years, the Persian Empire was overthrown and replaced by a Græco-Macedonian Empire, which soon split up into great monarchical states. Hellenism spread over all the East.

The idea of an empire, that is, of a single power extending its rule to subject peoples of different races, was foreign to Hellenism. The Greek thought of the State only in the form of a small republic concentrated in a city, whose magistrates, chosen by a citizen-body, exercised their authority over the city itself and over the country district surrounding it. The system of the City-state has been described in other volumes in this series, and it has been seen that Hellenism conquered new domains only by founding . . .

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