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The Treasures of Alexander the Great: How One Man’s Wealth by Frank L. Holt

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By Frank L. Holt

Conflict, the main ecocnomic financial task within the historic global, transferred wealth from the vanquished to the victor. Invasions, sieges, massacres, annexations, and mass deportations all redistributed estate with dramatic results for kings and commoners alike. No conqueror ever captured extra humans or estate in so brief an entire life than Alexander the good within the past due fourth century BC. For all its savagery, the construction of Alexanders empire has usually been hailed as a good financial occasion for all involved. Even these harshly serious of Alexander this present day are inclined to compliment his plundering of Persia as a method of releasing the moribund assets of the East. to check this renowned interpretation, The Treasures of Alexander the good investigates the categories and amounts of treasure seized by way of the Macedonian king, from gold and silver to land and slaves. It unearths what grew to become of the kings wealth and what Alexanders redistribution of those colossal assets can let us know approximately his much-disputed rules and character. even though Alexander owed his significant fortune to struggle, conflict additionally distracted him from safely handling his spoils and lots more and plenty was once wasted, embezzled, intentionally destroyed, or idled unprofitably. The Treasures of Alexander the nice offers a long-overdue and available account of Alexanders wealth and its huge, immense influence at the historic global. record of Illustrations Preface 1.Introduction Imagining the unbelievable resources and strategies Exploring a ignored earlier 2.Poor Alexander? Humbled Origins The Making of a Hero battle and Wealth 3.Conquest, Up shut and dear Balkan Treasures Asia Minor the center East and past 4.Reciting the Sword’s Prayer The Lord of your entire Former Possessions Booty past Imagining The Sack of Persepolis A historical Haul Rajas, Riches, Resentments 5.A Kings Priorities own presents and Patronage faith and rite towns and different Infrastructure Armies and Navies 6.(Mis)Management fortunate Thessalian, Weary Macedonian Debt and melancholy Harpalus the Treasurer Scams and Schemers With Harpalus or the King? The Successors 7.Conclusion the tale of the ethical a transformation of Hearts and Minds Monetization Counting cash What we will be able to Say approximately What we will be able to See Appendices 1.Ancient Measures and sleek Conversions 2.Summary of mentioned resources

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The crowds that watched Philip die had come to celebrate the launch of that campaign, unaware of how quickly their cheers would be silenced. In the chaos of that morning, the kingless Macedonians gambled their future on the unproven talents of a twenty-​year-​old prince. Young Alexander was no one’s hero yet, but he was heir to a fine army and his father’s plan to lead it east. 4 Alexander dutifully praised Philip’s transformation of Macedonia from a backward nation of timid herdsmen unable to protect their flocks, to a country in command of all Greece.

Finally, the gathering of tribute largely in the form of Greek coins makes sense of the story as we have it in Curtius, where Charidemus is urging Darius to spend his money on Greek mercenaries. This same Charidemus had furthermore acquired a reputation for extortion and stealing treasure. 35 In the end, no matter which Darius is meant, the vase reflects a long tradition of Greek art and literature devoted to the 29 T h e T r e a s u r e s o f Al e x a n d e r t h e G r e a t themes of Persian wealth, war councils, and the failure of both in the face of Greek austerity.

When monetization first came to ancient Macedonia, it did not transform all social relationships into financial ones. 46 31 T h e T r e a s u r e s o f Al e x a n d e r t h e G r e a t When the great warriors Glaucus and Diomedes squared off for battle at Troy, they did something quite alien to rational economic exchange. They honored old hereditary bonds of guest-​f riendship and traded armor, even though that exchange cost one of them dearly: Diomedes’s bronze armor was worth only nine oxen, while Glaucus’s gold armor was worth a hundred.

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