Alexander the Great Western Civilization Has Wide Term Paper

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Alexander the Great

Western civilization has wide range of historical aspects and it encompasses civilization of ancient Rome, ancient Greece and a Judaic civilization. A civilization is said to exist from Stone Age until today, ranging from China to Egypt, Mesoamerica and Africa.

Alexandros III (356-323 B.C.), Alexander the Great, king of Macedonia, was one of the greatest military geniuses in history. He conquered and governed civilizations of that time, ruled by his great desire to conquer the world and thus laid the foundation of universal world monarchy.

Arrian describes Alexander, as a great leader, always leading his army in enthusiastic way. He was first leader and conqueror who reached Greece, Egypt and Asia. He always led best military formation of the time, the Macedonian Phalanx, which was armed with sarisses, the fearful five and half meter long spears. Alexander created ethnic syncretism between the Macedonians and the conquered populations, particularly the hard line Persians. It was due to his endeavor that culture, beliefs and civilizations of Greek became dominant in the countries he conquered. Further, he protected and expanded Hellenistic culture, which together with the Roman Civilization and Christianity forms Western Civilization.

Alexander has been termed greatest of all generals who laid the foundation of a great empire. He brought the territory of Persian Empire under Greek rule and changed the Mediterranean and Near Eastern world forever. Hellenistic culture and its expansion from Near East and beyond were due to Alexander's endeavor. With his autocracy manifesto on April 29, 1881 he cracked down on all reforms, thus the repercussions of his rule were very profound.


Certain authors wrote that "Alexander had the iron will and capacity to lead his men" (Popovic), with an imaginative fantasy of brilliance. However, he has also been regarded as cruel and oppressive at times.

Apart from his autocratic behavior, the characteristics that turned him into a successful leader included his military genius and idealistic political strategies. 'Pursuit of glory, magnificence and attainment of divinity' appeared to be the chief psychological motives behind his success (Popovic). In human terms, his ambitions led to the expansion of Greek culture into Asia, which persist there even after his death.

In addition, he established a new coinage system, which became a great aid in trade around the world. He made a new policy of collectors independent of local governors and vast majority of Persian treasuries, which put immense impact on the economy of Mediterranean.

Alexander established around 70 new cities or more and kept the strong influence of Greek and colonization process with dominancy of Hellenic culture all over Asia, which was the largest achievement of his conquest. But later his policy for ethnic fusion was dissolved and did not survive. He shaped novel forms of warfare and new tactics in his battles against the Shaka nomads and against Porus. According to some authors, the strategies he used were gracious and artistic, and took very imaginative decisions for victory.

With the advent of Alexander era of Hellenistic monarchies were created and these were applied economically and culturally. In his era, he created a single market for trade across Gibraltar to Punjab and for further social and cultural development and exchange.


Sources Used in Document:

He was considered an excellent king, general, and conqueror. His innovative empire assisted and improved the way of life in his kingdom in many ways. Victorious conquest of vast area of land stretched Greek traditions and language far and wide and immensely affected western civilization.

Apart from the given source, following site was consulted:

Popovic, J.J. Alexander the Great Macedon. Accessed from World Wide Web:

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