|1) John Pentland Mahaffy
FYROM REPLY: This quote does not show anywhere that the Macedonians were Greek. We know that Alexander accepted and spread the standard koine Greek as a spoken language for his multi-ethnic empire, the only international language on which the whole Mediterranean world had already communicated even prior to the conquest of the Macedonians (just like English is international language today). Alexander was smart enough to keep this international Greek language for the Persians, Egyptians, Jews and all the nations of his empire to communicate. Forcing all those people to learn now a new foreign Macedonian language would have only provoked an additional hatred and multi-ethnic resistance for the Macedonian occupation of Asia, Egypt, and Greece, which the Macedonians obviously wanted to avoid. Unlike the Roman Empire, there was no single powerful centralized Macedonian Empire, but three main Macedonian kingdoms (Macedonia, Asia, Egypt) which were fragile and in conflict occasionally among each other, and the Macedonians needed such language standardization to help them maintain their power. That of course, does not mean that although the Macedonians, Persians, Egyptians, Jews, now communicated in Greek, that they all turned into Greeks, just like the African nations did not turn into French and English, just because of their usage of those two languages to communicate among themselves.
In the beginning we can witness again the fallacious claim, tending to mislead readers into believing Greek language was the international language in the “whole Mediterranean world” prior to Alexander’s conquests.
Lets get it straight once more.
Fact: Greek was *not* the “lingua franca” in the whole mediterranean world prior to Alexander’s conquests. In fact, it became so, because exactly of Alexander’s conquests and the number of colonies he founded that dispersed the Greek culture and language around the world of Eastern Mediterranean. During the time of Philip and the beginning of the conquests of Alexander, if we could say there was a lingua franca, that was Persian, not Greek. In fact, after Alexander, despite the wide adoption of Greek, native languages survived and thrived and Hellenistic kingdoms erected multiple multilingual inscriptions.
To demonstrate it clearly…
Prior to Alexander’s conquests,
Did Illyrians speak Greek??? NO
Did Paeonians speak Greek? NO
Did Persians speak Greek? NO
Did Egyptians speak Greek? NO
Did the bulk of Thracians speak Greek? NO
Did the Carthaginians speak Greek? NO
Did the Romans speak Greek? NO
Did Dardanians speak Greek? NO
Did Indians speak Greek? NO
Did Macedonians speak Greek? YES
Since the premise of the argument is entirely wrong, so it is its conclusion. Following the erroneous logic of the propagadists, we should also expect Persians to spread Greek language and Culture in every place they conquered but especially Romans who found already the Greek language dominating in the East, thanks to Alexander, to spread Greek in the most remote corner of their empire. Both they didnt. For the simple reason, they werent Greeks. Alexander spread Greek language and Greek culture because he was himself Greek and so were Macedonians.
|What is for certain however, is that Alexander spoke Macedonian with his own Macedonian troops and used Greek in addressing the Asians and Greeks. After all, the Macedonians were his kinsmen (precisely the way he calls them), not the Greeks. The ancient sources specifically refer to Macedonian as a language and not as a dialect of Greek, and Alexander himself specifically calls the Macedonian language – “our native language”. During the trial of Philotas, Alexander himself clearly distinguishes his native Macedonian language from the Greek language which was used at the Macedonian court as well as a second language in diplomacy, a fact we find in the Philotas trial (Q. Curtius Rufus).|
What is for certain, is that the deliberate attempts of propagandists to mislead readers will never stop. Spartan troops spoke the Doric dialect with eachother (Thuc. 3-112), a dialect which Atheneans couldnt fully copy with. This doesnt mean Spartans are not Greeks or Doric is not a Greek dialect. Ancient sources doesnt speak about Macedonian as a language and in fact in Philotas affair it becomes even clearer Macedonian is a Greek dialect, since Philotas explicitely states that using the Koine would make his speech “easier to understand“, indicating that Macedonian dialect was not incomprehensible to the non-Macedonians, but a bit more difficult to understand. In fact, the whole incident shows the Macedonian dialect was not that different from the Koine and could be understood eventhough it had some difficulty by other Greeks. This also explains the quick disappearance of the Macedonian dialect and the quick adoption of the Koine from Macedonians.
|The conclusion is clear – that the Macedonian kings admired a foreign culture (Greek in this case) does not prove they were Greek. Similarly, the Russian czars admired the French culture and French was even spoken on the Russian court. The African nations also use international English language to communicate among themselves. That of course does not prove that the Russian czars were French, nor that the Africans were English. Therefore, the above quote from the Greek internet page can not be used as a ‘proof’ that the Macedonians were Greek. See the complete evidence on the ethnicity of the ancient Macedonians.|
The conclusion is indeed clear but unlike the mistaken – as we already proved- claims of the well-known propagandists from FYROM, the available evidence, literary and archaeological, make us receivers of the same message. Alexander the Great never missed a chance to verify his pride for his Greek ancestry.He considered himself as a Greek and so did Macedonians. Macedonians spoke a Greek dialect.They worshipped the same gods like the rest of Greeks. Alexander undertook and accompliced to a military campaign based on the long-term hostility between Greeks and Persians, as leader of the Greeks. Both him and his army spread the ancient Greek language and culture to the fringes of India and therefore Alexander and Macedonia have justifiably been used for centuries as a symbol of Greek civilisation.
|Q Curtius Rufus:
 “Alexander meanwhile dealt swiftly with the unrest in Greece - not only did the Athenians rejoice at Philip’s death, but the Aetolians, the Thebans, as well as Spartans and the Peloponnesians, were ready to throw off the Macedonian yoke. (Diod. 17.3.3-5) – and he marched south into Thessaly, demanding the loyalty of its people in the name of their common ancestors, Achilles (Justin 11.3.1-2; cf. Diod. 17.4.1). And with speed and diplomacy Alexander brought the Thebans and Athenians into submission (Diod. 17.4.4-6) [p.20]
[The “unrest in Greece” encompasses all the city-states in Greece. These city-states were ready to throw off the Macedonian yoke. Here we have a clear delineation between Greek city-states, who were the conquered party, and Macedonia, the conqueror. This quote in a very unambiguous way illustrates how pitiful and ridiculous is the modern Greeks’ position when they claim, or equate, Macedonia as being one of, or the same as, the Greek city states. “Thebans and Athenians into submission” means one thing: Greece was won by the spear; it was a war of conquest. Therefore, modern Greeks’ position that Alexander “united” the Greek city-states, rests on euphemistic foundation, and as such, has no validity with historical justice. Bottom line is, that there was no “unification” of the Greek states by Alexander or his father Philip II. When one “unifies” one does not force submission of the subjects. When one unifies, there is no “yoke” to be thrown off.]
The above text is a pure sample of distorted historical facts, coming again from Fyrom’s propagandists.
Note in the first paragraph the deliberate use of bold case to mislead readers while there is not even a single mention to phrases like “in the name of their common ancestors” which shows beyond doubt Macedonians were Greeks.
However propagandists ignore conveniently similar phrases from Greek historians like :
|”that whereas they once hoped that all Hellas would be SUBJECT to them, now they rest upon you5 the hopes of their own deliverance”|
Isocrates to Philip, 54
Following the logic used by Fyroms’ propagandists we should conclude Spartans were a foreign people since they wanted to make “all Hellas Subject to them” as Isocrates states.
| Well, if I were trying to present this matter to any others before having broached it to my own country, which has thrice freed Hellas–twice from the barbarians and once from the Lacedaemonian yoke|
Isocrates to Philip, 129
The above quotes of Isocrates, demonstrate how pitiful and ridiculous are the attempts of Fyrom propagandists to distort historical truth since its obvious all the major greek powers of antiquity excercized their forces upon the rest of Greeks. Unfortunately for the falsifiers of history, subduing the Greek city-states doesnt make you a non-Greek as they wished to be.
| “It was decided to raze the city to the ground as a lesson to all Greek states which contemplated rebellion.” [p.21] [Point of interest: “as a lesson to all Greek states“. This statement indicates that Macedonia was not, and could not be included in Greece, for Macedonia was the one “giving” the lesson.]|
Another pathetic argument from the well-known propagandists.
As we showed above with the use of Isocrates quote “”that whereas they once hoped that ALL Hellas would be SUBJECT to them, now they rest upon you5 the hopes of their own deliverance”[/quote] The statement “ALL Hellas would be SUBJECT to them” is fatuous even to think Sparta couldnt be included in Greece because…she was the the one ‘giving’ the lesson.
 “Alexander also referred to his father, Philip, conqueror of Athenians, and recalled to their minds the recent conquest of Boeotia and the annihilation of its best known city.” [p.41][/quote]
So? So did earlier Spartans, Thebans.
| Alexander, in a letter, responds to Darius: “His Majesty Alexander to Darius: Greetings. The Darius whose name you have assumed wrought utter destruction upon the Greek inhabitants of the Hellespontine coast and upon the Greek colonies of Ionia, and then crossed the sea with a mighty army, bringing the war to Macedonia and Greece.” [p.50-1] [Alexander here himself clearly separates Greece from Macedonia]|
Actually Alexander writing to Darius stated the following.
“Your ancestors came to Macedonia and the rest of Hellas and did us great harm, though we had done them no prior injury. I have been appointed leader of the Greeks, and wanting to punish the Persians I have come to Asia, which I took from you…”
Arrian, Anabasis of Alexander II, 14, 4 (Loeb, P. A. Brunt) – 95-175 AD
| “From here the Macedonians crossed to Mitylene which had been recently seized by the Athenian Chares, and was now held by him with a garrison of Persians, 2,000 strong. Unable to withstand the siege, Chares surrendered the city on condition that he be allowed to leave in safety, after which he made for Imbros. The Macedonians spared those who surrender.” [p.63]
[“Athenian” Chares with 2,000 of Persian soldiers fighting against Alexander’s Macedonians. Another example of Greeks fighting against Macedonia. If this was a war to revenge Greece from Persia, Greeks would have not have fighting on the side of the Persians against the Macedonians. The truth is that they hated the Macedonians more for conquering Greece, then they did the Persians.]
Here the propagandists have totally lost it. In the Battle of Cnidus, Spartans faced the Persian fleet united along with the Athenean admiral Conon and the Greek Fleet. Its well known to everybody except as it seems from the above authors, the major Greek power had always as rivals the rest of Greek powers. The truth is that Fyrom propagandists lack any serious historical background.
|6] “There is a report that, after the king had completed the Macedonian custom of marking out the circular boundary for the future city-walls with barley-meal, flocks of birds flew down and fed on the barley. Many regarded this as unfavorable omen, but the verdict of the seers was that the city would have a large immigrant population and would provide the means of livelihood to many countries.” [p.69] [The Macedonians had their own distinct customs]|
So?? Spartan custom was to eat Melas Zomos, a custom unique in Greece. Does it mean for the authors, they werent Greeks?
| “As it happened, Alexander had been sent from Macedonia a present of Macedonian clothes and a large quantity of purple material.” [p.97] [Macedonian clothes, and purple material. (Macedonian customs 2) Macedonians dressed differently than the Greeks. One very peculiar feature being the kautsia, the well known Macedonian hat.]
8] “…but the king’s conscience would not permit him to leave his men unburied, for by Macedonian convention there is hardly any duty in military life as binding as burial of one’s dead.” [p.100]
Same as the above. Each Greek region had its peculiarities and unique customs. It doesnt mean anyway this meant they were not Greeks.
| Inflamed with greed for kingship, Bessus and Nabarzanes now decided to carry out the plan they had long been hatching. [The plot to kill Darius the III.] “If, as they feared, Alexander rejected their treacherous overtures, they would murder Darius and head for Bactria with the troops of their own people. However, open arrest of Darius was impossible because the Persians, many thousands strong would come to the aid of their king, and the loyalty of the Greeks also caused apprehension.” [p.111] [The Greeks remained loyal to Persia and against Alexander and his Macedonians to the end]|
Greek mercenaries remained loyal to their employers. Same as Xenophon and his men remained loyal to his Persian employer much earlier. Again a tragic argument from Fyrom propagandists.
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