The Genius of Alexander the Great Book Review

2373 words 10 pages
The Genius of Alexander the Great Alexander III of Macedon, widely known as Alexander the Great, is opinioned by some people to have been a ruthless man who only had a thirst for conquest , but according to others he was a man of intellect and “statesmanlike vision” (Hammond Preface). In N.G.L. Hammond’s book The Genius of Alexander the Great, as stated in the preface, he tries to refrain from writing based on his own opinion of Alexander, and instead analyzes the few surviving narratives on Alexander’s achievements in an unbiased manner. He portrays the conquests, struggles, and greatest achievements of Alexander’s career, such as the building of his empire that stretched from the eastern Mediterranean coast through Asia Minor and the …show more content…
In 1954, he became headmaster at Clifton College, and in 1962 he was appointed professor of Greek at Bristol University (N.G.L. Hammond Bio…). He was mainly recognized for his writing of books on Alexander’s life until his retirement in 1973 (N.G.L. Hammond: Professor…).
Hammond’s works cited page was limited to books only in English and included Vergina: the Royal Tombs and the Ancient City by M. Andronicos, Coquest and Empire: the Reign of Alexander the Great by A.B. Bosworth, Alexander the Great by R. Lane Fox, and Alexander the Great and the Greeks of Asia Minor by A.G. Heisserer. He incorporated many of the books he himself wrote, such as The Macedonian State. Many of his secondary sources came from London and Oxford. He also used ancient narratives that dated between three and five centuries after Alexander’s career (Hammond preface). Hammond used writings from Arrian, whom received his information from Ptolemy and Aristobulus. They campaigned with Alexander and were considered to be trustworthy sources according to Hammond (Hammond preface). Hammond also obtained information from Plutarch’s reports, but Plutarch relied on accounts of information from Cleitarchus, a contemporary, which were considered to be untrustworthy because his books contained many errors (Hammond preface). In his opening paragraph, Hammond used an excerpt from Marsyas Macedon’s book The Upbringing of Alexander. Macedon was a contemporary of Alexander and an eyewitness to

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