History is riddled with events of discovery. The basis of the knowledge we have today can be attributed to many people from around the world and throughout history. One way or another, we have gained extensive knowledge of the geography of the earth. And one of its greatest explorers in is not actually known for being an explorer. Rather, he is known for how he went about it. This explorer is known to history as Alexander the Great.
Alexander the Explorer
Alexander the Great had an unquenchable thirst for exploration. He traveled to the edges of the known world, crossed them, and kept going. In his conquests, he carried his armies from their homeland in Greece all the way into present-day India. He and his troops saw many strange and novel things in their journeys, with elephants being perhaps the most astonishing to them. But what probably amazed them more was the amount of land and earth that extended beyond anything they had known before. Up until the conquests of Alexander the Great, the Greeks essentially lived in a bubble. They were weary of outsiders and generally kept to themselves and the Mediterranean, until the Persians came. Alexander proved to the Greeks and himself that the world was much more than they thought.
Along with desire for exploration, Alexander had the capacity and the knowledge needed to move such distances in ancient times. He was tutored by Aristotle, who channeled to Alexander much of the knowledge and philosophies from the greatest minds in Greek history until then. This gave Alexander an intellectual mindset that drove him to discover. Had he been given the chance, he likely would not have stopped moving East until he was on the shores of the Pacific Ocean in China. The only thing that held him back was his army. After years of marching and fighting, they were tired and wanted to go home to Greece. Alexander loved to explore, but he also loved his army. Reluctantly, he turned his army around traveled back toward Greece. However, the fire of exploration still burned within him. Had he survived the journey home, he had plans to depart Greece once again and travel westward across Europe. Sadly, he died before he was able to do so.
Expanding Horizons, Literally and Figuratively
Alexander the Great is among the greatest of explorers. He was fearless, and had the desire to go beyond anywhere that anyone in his time had imagined. Thanks to him the Greeks view of the world was entirely changed. After the death of Alexander, the Greeks became accepting of peoples from outside cultures and nations. The outer limits of their world had been expanded to twice what they were before. And the Greeks became the forefathers of western civilization, Their ideology is prominent throughout the world today.
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