Alexander of Macedon: The young days – Prince of Macedonia

From the old books one can read that from his earliest childhood, the nanny Lanika and the first instructors – Leonidas and Lysimachus – were taking care of him. Apart from them, Alexander was also taught by Alcippus, Philiskus, Polynices and other teachers. The wisdom of the young heir to the Macedonian state showed itself in his early childhood. When he was about seven years old, representatives from the royal court of Persia came to his father Philip’s palace. For a period of time, Philip also gave protection to some of the Persian statesmen. The young prince astonished the Persians, asking them about their readiness for war, about the length of the roads that led into Asia, about the distant kingdoms far to the east that he had read about in books, and about how the Persians treated their enemies. The astonishment by the level of conversation of Philip’s child in Persia announced that Macedonia was already preparing a successor. One of the most retold episodes from the life of Alexander the Great is the first meeting with his legendary horse Bucephalus. Medieval translations of ancient records preserved traditions and legends about Bucephalus, according to which King Alexander’s horse was the last unicorn. The taming of the horse by turning him toward the sun so that it could no longer see its own shadow was the beginning of their journey to the end of the world.

Allegedly, Alexander was taught the skills and knowledge for the future great campaign by his teacher Aristotle. Those who claim this have forgotten that according to historical data, Aristotle taught Alexander since he was 13 years old, and less than three years later, his father Philip appointed him regent of Macedonia. It is unknown why Aristotle was part of Alexander’s education for only three years. Aristotle was not even involved in the great campaign to the east, and years later his nephew – the scribe Callisthenes, along with his cousins, were sentenced to death by Alexander for trying to kill him.

At the age of 16, Alexander got what he wanted from his earliest childhood – to fulfill the vows of his ancestors in a war that was a holy campaign for the Macedonians. He knew about the Macedonians’ habits of betraying and killing each other in order to get to power, about the old wars with Persia, about the campaigns towards the “end of the world”, but also about the fact that once upon a time, long before his time, there was a great kingdom of the mother earth and the father sun that extended over all that known world. Alexander knew what he had to do to reach the descendants of the ancient sages, what he had to ask them, but also what to convey to them. It took the son of Philip and Olympia a few years to unite and subdue all his country’s neighbours, and then, in a decade, he managed not only to open the old libraries, but also to create new ones that laid the foundation for the spread of Macedonian culture in Africa and Asia in the centuries after him. That is why the testimonies of all the peoples who lived on the territory of the great Macedonian Empire show that Alexander visited them in order to include them in his Kingdom, without changing anything from their traditions and habits, except within the organization of local and state management – in the great Macedonian Empire. His closest friends, young and strong, with the support of Philip’s older generals and the power of the Macedonian state, were ready to start a campaign against the largest kingdom at that time – the great Persia…

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