, Phillip II of Macedonia took over Greece. He did not do so with the intent to subjugate them, but to lead them. He wanted to lead them against Persia. He organized and united the Greeks, raised an army of about 60,000 troops, then was assassinated by one of his own nobles in 336 BC. Phillip's son then took over when he was twenty years old. His name was Alexander, and in this essay I will discuss Alexander, his accomplishments, and his effects on Hellenistic society.
Alexander had already established a reputation among the army. At age fourteen he was commanding sections of the army, not because he was the king's son, but because he had demonstrated outstanding battle skills and strategy. By age seventeen, he had complete control of large sections of the army. So, now the army followed him not just because he was the rightful heir to their throne, but also because they chose to.
In 334 B.C., the Macedonian led Greek army began their attack on Persia. Along with the army, Alexander brought historians, scribes, and scientists; in total, they had about 70,000 people. They all crossed over the Hellespont into Asia Minor and began their trek down the coast. Along this journey, they destroyed all harbors they came in contact with, thus effectively neutralizing the Persian Navy. Alexander didn't stop there; he moved up into central Asia Minor and then moved his way southward, destroying small villages here and there. When he came upon Tarsus, he met a relatively small Persian force. It was a quick fight in which Alexander and his troops came out victorious.
Now Alexander did something that normally wasn't done in this time period. He knew that in order to keep control over an area you needed to have a presence all over that area. So, he left the injured, a few historians and scientists, and a commanding officer or two behind at every main place he destroyed.
Alexander kept moving, his hatred for Persia and his confidence growing with each victory.