Monday, April 20, 2009

Alexander the Great

Alexander the Great was born in 356 B.C. His dad was away from home a lot, so Alexander was raised close to his mom. He grew up to be brave, sure of himself, and headstrong. He didn't like to change his mind, even if what he planned seemed impossible.

When Alexander was ten, his father took him to a fair. They saw a beautiful horse, but it wouldn't let anyone near it. Alexander told his father that he could tame it. He noticed it was afraid of its shadow, so Alexander turned the horse to the sun and rode it. The horse, Busephalus, later carried Alexander to many of his adventures.

When Alexander turned sixteen, he joined the Macedonian army. Two years later, he fought in a battle against Chearonea, a town in Greece. Soon, the powerful Macedonian army defeated the city. The next year Macedonia and Greece made an agreement. They would help each-other fight when needed. Phillip, Alexander's father, led the combined army.

Now that Alexander and Phillip were working together, they became closer. But all of this changed when Phillip married a second wife. Alexander and his mom disliked the new bride, so the two of them moved away.

Alexander later returned, but in the celebration, Phillip was killed by one of his own body guards. Some people thought Alexander and his mother planned the murder. Some thought it was the Persians. But Phillip was dead, and Alexander took his place. In 334 B.C, Alexander felt ready to fight the Persians. He left half his army at home to keep the peace and took the other half to Asia Minor. At first things didn't go well and Alexander was nearly killed. But the Persians weren't ready for a long battle and Alexander's army outlasted them. Alexander took over some nearby Persian land. Meanwhile, Darius, the Persian ruler, was coming closer. They fought hard, but the Persians gave up and ran away.

After this, he went to Egypt. The Egyptians disliked being ruled by Persia, so they welcomed Alexander and named him their pharaoh. In Egypt, Alexander founded a city and named it Alexandria.

After more battles and conquering, Alexander set out to conquer India. It was much bigger than Alexander expected. In the battle, the Indian elephants scared the Greek horses. One day, Porus, an Indian ruler, decided Alexander would attack no more, so he stopped moving his troops. That night, Alexander made a surprise attack and defeated the Indian troops.

One his way back home, it seemed that Alexander's problems would never end. One of his best friends died, he missed his dead horse, and he was badly hurt. He only got worse. One day he became very ill and died.

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