Alexander the Great (356-323 BC), King of Macedonia, lived a life mythical proportions. He modelled himself on Achilles and slept with a copy of the Iliad, annotated by Aristotle, his teacher, under his pillow. Unrivalled by any historical military figure, he conquered the Mediterranean, Persia, Afghanistan and northwest India during his brief life. By the time he died at age 33 he had introduced Greek civilisation to the world. A gifted strategist and self-proclaimed deity, Alexander was impetuous and merciless in warfare. He never lost a battle. Exhibiting conspicuous personal bravery, two millenia after his death he is still remembered as the greatest soldier of all time.
NIGEL CAWTHORNE has written more than 60 books and his work has appeared in over 150 newspapers, magazines and partworks on both sides of the Atlantic – from the Financial Times to the New York Tribune.