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From Hutton Webster's, Early European History (1917); edited for this on-line publication, by ELLOPOS
III. MINGLING OF EAST AND WEST AFTER 359 B.C.
» Contents of this ChapterPage 7
ALEXANDER CRUSHES REBELLION
The situation which Alexander faced on his accession might well have dismayed a less dauntless spirit. Philip had not lived long enough to unite firmly his wide dominions. His unexpected death proved the signal for uprisings and disorder. The barbarous Thracians broke out in widespread rebellion, and the Greeks made ready to answer the call of Demosthenes to arms. But Alexander soon set his kingdom in order. After crushing the tribes of Thrace, he descended on Greece and besieged Thebes, which had risen against its Macedonian garrison. The city was soon captured; its inhabitants were slaughtered or sold into slavery; and the place itself was destroyed. The terrible fate of Thebes induced the other states to submit without further resistance.
SEEMING STRENGTH OF THE PERSIAN EMPIRE
With Greece pacified, Alexander could proceed to the invasion of Persia. Since the days of Darius the Great the empire had remained almost intact-- a huge, loosely-knit collection of many different peoples, whose sole bond of union was their common allegiance to the Great King. Its resources were enormous. There were millions of men for the armies and untold wealth in the royal treasuries. Yet the empire was a hollow shell.
Cf. The Ancient Greece * The Ancient Rome
Eastern Roman Empire (Byzantium) * Western Medieval Europe * Renaissance in Italy