Alexandria's founded by Alexander

Alexandria's founded by Alexander the Great (by year BC): 334 Alexandria in Troia (Turkey) - 333 Alexandria at Issus/Alexandrette (Iskenderun, Turkey) - 332 Alexandria of Caria/by the Latmos (Alinda, Turkey) - 331 Alexandria Mygdoniae - 331 Alexandria (Egypt) - 330 Alexandria Ariana (Herat, Afghanistan) - 330 Alexandria of the Prophthasia/in Dragiana/Phrada (Farah, Afghanistan) - 330 Alexandria in Arachosia (Kandahar, Afghanistan) - 330 Alexandria in the Caucasus (Begram, Afghanistan) - 329 Alexandria of the Paropanisades (Ghazni, Afghanistan) - 329 Alexandria Eschate or Ultima (Khodjend, Tajikistan) - 329 Alexandria on the Oxus (Termez, Afghanistan) - 328 Alexandria in Margiana (Merv, Turkmenistan) - 326 Alexandria Nicaea (on the Hydaspes, India) - 326 Alexandria Bucephala (on the Hydaspes, India) - 325 Alexandria Sogdia - 325 Alexandria Oreitide - 325 Alexandria in Opiene / Alexandria on the Indus (confluence of Indus & Acesines, India) - 325 Alexandria Rambacia (Bela, Pakistan) - 325 Alexandria Xylinepolis (Patala, India) - 325 Alexandria in Carminia (Gulashkird, Iran) - 324 Alexandria-on-the-Tigris/Antiochia-in-Susiana/Charax (Spasinou Charax on the Tigris, Iraq) - ?Alexandria of Carmahle? (Kahnu)

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Diodorus Siculus, Library of History – Volume VIII on Alexander

Diodorus Siculus, Library of History (ISBN 0-674-99464-7) is probably best known as published in the Loeb Classical Library version, with the left page in original Greek and the right page translated in parallel into English by C. Bradford Welles.

Diodorus was a Greek historian from Agrigento in Sicily, who lived ca. 100-30 BC and who wrote a world history covering forty books. His history was divided in thee parts: the mythical history of peoples, non-Greeks and Greeks till the Trojan War; the history till Alexander’s death in 323 BC; and finally the history until 54 BC.  Not all books have survived, but we do have Books I to V where Diodorus writes about the Egyptians, Assyrians, Ethiopians and Greeks, and Books XI to XX handling Greek history from 480 till 302 BC. Of the other volumes we only have fragments.

In general, Diodorus used good and reliable sources, most of them now lost like Ephorus, Apollodorus, Agatharchides, Philistus and Timaesus. Although I personally have a preference for Arrian’s accounts when it comes to Alexander, it is always interesting to cross-reference the events and figures with Diodorus’ version.

Alexander is treated in Loeb’s Diodorus Siculus Volume VIII, containing Books XVI.66 to XVII. Just like all Loeb’s books, this one contains a detailed index at the end and also interesting maps of Sicily, Greece and one showing Alexander’s conquests.

For whoever is interested in Alexander the Great, this definitely is a faithful reading companion together with the histories written by Arrian, Plutarch and Curtius Rufus.

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