Modern Historians about Macedonia – Jacques Pirenne

 

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Archelaus, with Greek mercenaries in his pay, laid the foundations for a centralized administration, built roads, coined money and organized local markets in the interior. His court was similar to that of a Greek tyrant; Zeuxis was often there, and Euripides settled there, after leaving Athens where he had not been understood.

The Tides of History Vol. 1 Book by Lovett Edwards, Jacques Pirenne; E. P. Dutton, 1962, 227

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Philip, however, did not exactly conquer the country; by uniting all the Greeks in a confederation, the Panhellenic Corinthian League, he took up once again the policy previously employed by Darius towards the Ionian cities; he forced the Greek states to accept a statute establishing a permanent peace between them, and obliged them to refer all disputes to the arbitration of the League, while guaranteeing freedom of trade and navigation. All the members of the League were represented on his Council by delegates whose number was proportional to their military contingents. This system reversed the ancient order of supremacy; it gave predominance to Thessaly. The cities were grouped into districts, and Sparta, which had refused to belong to the League, had her territory taken from her. Henceforward she was to be no more than a city, isolated and powerless.

The Tides of History Vol. 1 Book by Lovett Edwards, Jacques Pirenne; E. P. Dutton, 1962, 230

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With these resources he organized a national army, based on conscription and equipped in the Greek manner. The court at Pella became a centre of Greek thought. Aristotle, son of a doctor from Stagira, was hired to act as tutor to the young crown-prince, Alexander.

The Tides of History Vol. 1 Book by Lovett Edwards, Jacques Pirenne; E. P. Dutton, 1962, 229

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Philip immediately declared himself the champion of Hellenism against the Persian Empire. Even as Xerxes had earlier called on the solidarity of Asia against Greece, so Philip tried to rally the whole Hellenic world in a campaign of liberation of the Ionian Greeks

The Tides of History Vol. 1 Book by Lovett Edwards, Jacques Pirenne; E. P. Dutton, 1962, 230

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The fate of Greece, from then on, was sealed. Her unity was to be achieved by the King of Macedonia, even as formerly the unity of Egypt had been imposed on the cities of the Delta by the Kings of Nekhen.

The Tides of History Vol. 1 Book by Lovett Edwards, Jacques Pirenne; E. P. Dutton, 1962, 229

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The party of the wealthy and the business men turned to Macedonia. The democratic party, on the other hand, stood for independence and patriotism. At Athens, its chief was Demosthenes. But he was unable to see beyond the ideal of the city. A prisoner of archaic formulae, his cause was lost in advance.

The Tides of History Vol. 1 Book by Lovett Edwards, Jacques Pirenne; E. P. Dutton, 1962, 229

 

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Tyre alone, ancient rival of the Greeks, resisted desperately. It was razed to the ground, and those of its inhabitants who escaped massacre were sold as slaves. The old hatred of the Hellenes for the Tyrians was sated ferociously

The Tides of History Vol. 1 Book by Lovett Edwards, Jacques Pirenne; E. P. Dutton, 1962, page 232

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Alexander did not hesitate; he penetrated into Egypt, where he was hailed as a liberator. His presence sealed the alliance which, since Marathon, had united the Greeks and the Egyptians of the party of independence. The ‘Greek King’ bowed before the god Apis at Memphis and assumed the double crown of Egypt ( 332 bc).

The Tides of History Vol. 1 Book by Lovett Edwards, Jacques Pirenne; E. P. Dutton, 1962, page 233

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After restoring the unity of the Greek world by the conquest of the Ionian cities, which were immediately incorporated into the Corinthian League, and completing the occupation of Syria, Alexander restored the Egyptian Empire within the frontiers formerly given it by Tutmes III, and united Greece and Egypt for the first time under the same sovereignty

The Tides of History Vol. 1 Book by Lovett Edwards, Jacques Pirenne; E. P. Dutton, 1962, page 233

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The union of the world into a single economic system led to an imperial policy of cosmopolitanism. Philip had begun his conquests by proclaiming himself the champion of the Greeks. Alexander, while making himself the instrument of Hellenism, let himself be seduced by Egypt and the East. His whole policy tended to create a new ‘climate’ by the destruction of the nationalist sentiments which, since the Assyrian, Babylonian and Persian conquests, had already been greatly weakened in Asia. That was why he favoured the mixture of races. He himself set the example by marrying Statira, daughter of Darius III, and Parysatis, daughter of Artaxerxes III, thus allying himself to the dynasty of the Achaemenids. He offered rewards to the Macedonian soldiers who married Asiatic women, and practised a policy of religious toleration and respect for local institutions. Trade had made Greek an international language in Egypt and in Asia Minor; Alexander made it the official language of the empire. It was to penetrate, in the wake of the Greek soldiers, colonists and merchants, as far as Central Asia. The Greek language was to become one of the bonds to unite all parts of the Empire, bonds that Alexander wished should be both intimate and spontaneous. Economic interpenetration must be accompanied by moral interpenetration, which would be shown in a double form; the Egyptian theory of monarchy by divine right was to spread over the Greek world, while Greek philosophical conceptions would spread rapidly throughout the whole Mediterranean East.

The Tides of History Vol. 1 Book by Lovett Edwards, Jacques Pirenne; E. P. Dutton, 1962, page 236

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But the monarchy of Alexander also adapted itself to Greek democratic principles which were applied to all the new cities endowed with governments elected by the middle classes. Thus was prepared the fusion, in a single political system, of the oriental type of monarchy and Greek democracy, creating a new political formula which marked the end of the era of independent cities and at the same time announced the expansion of Hellenism. Up to the IVth century bc Greece had only had a slight influence, save for the diffusion of the Greek language by trade, on the countries around her. From the times of Alexander, Greek culture set out to conquer the world and to become, side by side with Egyptian mysticism which spread more and more with the diffusion of the mystery cults, the moral bond which was to unite the Mediterrancan peoples in a single civilization.

The Tides of History Vol. 1 Book by Lovett Edwards, Jacques Pirenne; E. P. Dutton, 1962, page 237

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