Is Alexander the Great actually as bad as some people say he is?

Jul 2018
540
Hong Kong
The game between Alexander and his father Philip II was an interesting episode — I don't believe the authenticity of that ludicrous story about Alexander's quarrel with Attalos and his father in the wedding banquet, it's too unrealistic and unlogical, yet this fictional story revealed some important messages we ought not to omit.

The stance of Alexander of Epirus and Attalos was pretty delicate and fluctuated. They played a major role in this Macedonian internal strife.

My hypothesis is:whether Attalos, or the Persian Satrap of Caria, is part of Philip II's plan to keep the growing influence of "heir-prince's faction" at bay. To counter against his father, Alexander intended to utilize Illyria, Epirus and even an attempt to "drawing Caria to his side" as a "counter-plot" against his father. At the end, Philip II conceded and both men "reconciled" for preventing too great a detriment to the security of Macedon which was of the utmost importance for their interest.

Alexander was well-calculated and artful, he got great reason for anything he planned to do. Think about it, when the great men were pretty much risking their own life and reputation for every important decision, it's totally unimaginable that they would do anything stupid, reckless or ill-considered without "sufficient reasons". They did not become great men by fortuitousness.
 
Nov 2011
1,119
The Bluff
;) Olympias killed Arrhidaeus. Cassander in fact buried him, along with Eurydice, at Aegae and held funeral games in their honor.
Correct. Kassandros then had the oryal family - including Alexander IV - put out of the way permanently.
 
Nov 2011
1,119
The Bluff
The game between Alexander and his father Philip II was an interesting episode — I don't believe the authenticity of that ludicrous story about Alexander's quarrel with Attalos and his father in the wedding banquet, it's too unrealistic and unlogical, yet this fictional story revealed some important messages we ought not to omit.
There's no compelling reason to doubt the sources on this. Alexander made short work of Attalos - with Parmenion's agreement - after he succeeded Philip II. For the very good reason that Attalos was hardly a supporter of Alexander.

As for the hypothesis, Philip was planning ahead for the invasion of Asia. Marrying off Arrhidaios into the satrap of Karia's family was a part of that plan.
 
May 2015
304
villa of Lucullus
You're not making any sense. You will not find a more strident member of historum than me in saying "we are calling too many things genocide that are not, be serious please". That said, I find it hard to avoid characterizing most of what I mentioned as genocide. Not all of it was mentioned as genocide clearly, some are just brutal abuse of human rights. The point is that all of them were deemed acceptable. That said, you're arguing in circles here. You were the one making the point that supposedly the brutality of Roman commanders would have been less accepted if only the common citizens had known about them. That made no sense, because as my numerous examples observed the common citizen did know about them, and it only made these commanders more popular with them. Frankly, it's the intellectuals in society you're more likely to get grief from when you abuse human rights in the name of security, that's been true from time immemorial, and they were ok with the brutality of ancient times too; because it was justified in their minds, because morality was different back then. This is explained over and over, and you are just wandering in circles to the point you can't keep straight the arguments you were making in the first place. Your post above is now making the opposite point to your last one, which is what my post was responding to!
No, my argument is that we have little evidence for Roman commanders emphasizing atrocities against helpless civilians. The conflicts you mentioned all involved battles against armed enemy soldiers. Roman commanders seem to have emphasized things like battles won and enemy soldiers killed. But we have little evidence for them placing specific emphasis on babies killed or women raped, the sort of stuff people might deem less acceptable.
 

Caesarmagnus

Ad Honorem
Jan 2015
3,650
Australia
No, my argument is that we have little evidence for Roman commanders emphasizing atrocities against helpless civilians. The conflicts you mentioned all involved battles against armed enemy soldiers. Roman commanders seem to have emphasized things like battles won and enemy soldiers killed. But we have little evidence for them placing specific emphasis on babies killed or women raped, the sort of stuff people might deem less acceptable.
Caesar tells us of whole tribes, men and women, sold into slavery after the battle, of Gauls being amputated after battle so they could serve as a lesson to anyone else who would oppose Rome, of the complete destruction of certain tribes (men and women all). These are all documented in his books, and are in no way unusual. Do you think the 6000 slaves Crassus crucified were still carrying swords when he did it? Do you think when Rome boasted of having utterly destroyed the city of Carthage people thought "oh, but not the women and children obviously". Be serious. Rome had war games in the arena most years, celebrating and re-enacting these things just to remind the locals they happened, never mind all the other reminders I alluded to. The city was littered with slaves from destroyed people who were physical reminders of Rome having destroyed said people utterly (and many of the slaves were women and children). Where do you think people thought all the female and child slaves in the slave markets in Rome were coming from? Pompey Strabo, for his triumph, marched the (surviving) women and children captives from Asculum Picenum through the streets of Rome after he utterly destroyed the place. This was not uncommon. You are talking nonsense that is just factually untrue.
 
Last edited:
May 2015
304
villa of Lucullus
I guess the area where I disagree is the suggestion that Roman morality is much different from morality that remained widespread throughout much of the 20th century.

Have you read much about what took place in the Korean and Vietnam wars? Entire villages wiped out, use of napalm, mass bombing, etc, etc.

I find many things western democracies did through much of the cold war absolutely despicable yet enough people at the time felt it was okay that it continued unabated year after year.
 

Caesarmagnus

Ad Honorem
Jan 2015
3,650
Australia
I guess the area where I disagree is the suggestion that Roman morality is much different from morality that remained widespread throughout much of the 20th century.

Have you read much about what took place in the Korean and Vietnam wars? Entire villages wiped out, use of napalm, mass bombing, etc, etc.

I find many things western democracies did through much of the cold war absolutely despicable yet enough people at the time felt it was okay that it continued unabated year after year.
Repeating yourself 20 times doesn't make you right. This exact line of thought was addressed in this thread multiple times (and in other threads you've expressed it in). To repeat "have you heard of Vietnam man?" in this thread, after we all shot that argument to bits pages ago, shows you are not to be taken seriously. Have you heard of Nixon's secret bombing of Cambodia? Want to guess why they tried to make it secret? When word of the atrocities in places like Vietnam got home, there was mass unrest and protests about it. We EXPLAINED THIS ALREADY. Where were the protests about the atrocities Rome boasted of, that I highlighted (yet again) in my previous post? They were non-existent, because morality has changed a lot. Maybe I should go browse my local slave markets to see how people feel before I post again... oh wait, I can't, BECAUSE THEY DO NOT EXIST, because we GOT RID OF SLAVERY. I hate to resort to caps but the difference between ancient times and modern stuff you like repeating, like Vietnam, has been explained so many times to you in this thread. So.Many.Times. I get English isn't your first language but you need to actually read and absorb the information in our posts before you reply with "but Vietnam" again.
 
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May 2015
304
villa of Lucullus
Repeating yourself 20 times doesn't make you right. This exact line of thought was addressed in this thread multiple times (and in other threads you've expressed it in). To repeat "have you heard of Vietnam man?" in this thread, after we all shot that argument to bits pages ago, shows you are not to be taken seriously. Have you heard of Nixon's secret bombing of Cambodia? Want to guess why they tried to make it secret? When word of the atrocities in places like Vietnam got home, there was mass unrest and protests about it. We EXPLAINED THIS ALREADY. Where were the protests about the atrocities Rome boasted of, that I highlighted (yet again) in my previous post? They were non-existent, because morality has changed a lot. Maybe I should go browse my local slave markets to see how people feel before I post again... oh wait, I can't, BECAUSE THEY DO NOT EXIST, because we GOT RID OF SLAVERY. I hate to resort to caps but the difference between ancient times and modern stuff you like repeating, like Vietnam, has been explained so many times to you in this thread. So.Many.Times. I get English isn't your first language but you need to actually read and absorb the information in our posts before you reply with "but Vietnam" again.
Nixon was overwhelmingly reelected in 1972 in one of the most one sided elections in recent memory. This was long after the public learned about these numerous Vietnam atrocities. If this stuff was really so unappealing to the American public they could have shown him the door. That they didn't tells me a lot about the morals of the public at large.

You keep bringing up protests as if they somehow redeem all sorts of acts committed by their government and armed forces but that''s not how it works.