Alexander Really Was Great.

We tend to let the name “Alexander the Great” roll off the tongue without thought, but there is a reason he earned his name.

Alexander III of Macedon died on this day in 323 BC, after building the greatest empire the world had ever seen up until then.  He was undefeated in battle his entire life, and modern military scholars still turn to his battle strategies as teaching aids.

He introduced Greek culture to most of the western world, and directly influenced the Byzantine culture that would rise in the centuries following his death.  Because of Alexander, Greek was the lingua franca used by most of the western world for centuries, in order to speak to each other, for commerce, education, medicine, and more, until the rise of Rome eclipsed the Greek influence.

At least five cities bore his name, including Alexandria in Egypt, which has held the name since it was endowed in Alexander’s time.

That’s an astonishing amount of influence and achievement for a man who was just short of his 33rd birthday when he died.

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