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Death of Alexander the Great

Alexander the Great trusted in his gods, and he paid attention to omens.  Near the end of his life, omens indicated he should not return to Babylon.  

Ignoring those warnings - something he rarely did, according to surviving accounts - Alexander returned to Babylon.

By this time in his life - the year was 323 B.C. - his prior wounds, grief over the death of his closest friend and alcohol consumption began to take a cumulative toll. 

Near the end of May, when Alexander was 33 years old, he developed a fever.  Growing steadily weaker, he died in less than two weeks.

A legend is told about a "speaking tree" which Alexander had encountered in India.  The tree, it is said, rebuked him for trying to conquer India.  It also predicted that Alexander would die young, but his name would be remembered forever.

Historians have assessed Alexander's end rather differently.  They wonder ... was he broken by his own absolute power (as well as by a fever)? 

Alexander viewed himself as a man of the gods.  He believed they - and they alone - were his judge.  He had reason to think so.  For every sign the gods ever gave him, Alexander observed, they told him no lies.


Media Credits

Clip from "In the Footsteps of Alexander" (1998), presented by Michael Wood - a Maya Vision Production for the BBC.  Online, courtesy BBC Worldwide Channel at YouTube.

 

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"Death of Alexander the Great" AwesomeStories.com. Oct 07, 2013. Jun 20, 2019.
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