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joanna



Joined: 02 Feb 2005
Posts: 1270
Location: Greece/USA/Italy/UK/

PostPosted: Tue Jun 14, 2005 1:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Please, let us stop here. I don't want us to argue about these things. I do believe this is a friendly forum. Of course people have different opinions and all of them should be respected. Sorry if I hurt anybody. Confused
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Adriv



Joined: 17 Jan 2005
Posts: 1144
Location: Maryland, USA

PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2005 4:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There are no facts in history, because history is not always right. BUT is all the books out there about Alexander the Great, agree that Hephaestion was the only important person in Alexander´s life. Well.... we can say that is a... FACT.

Wink
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apelles



Joined: 12 Mar 2005
Posts: 1152

PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2005 9:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

PersianElite,I wonder if you have heard that the British Museum in London is putting on a major exhibition on the Persian Empire in the autumn.I t will go on to other places in Europe afterwards--maybe Holland but I,m not sure.It,s being done together with the Tehran museum and apparently there are going to be amazing things never seen before,so it might be a good idea to check out the British Museum website for information.I,ll be putting more details on the forum nearer the time.I think you can be very proud of your cultural heritage and remember that Alexander also was very aware of the immense sophistocation and achievements of Persia.After all,he based his ideas of the ideal ruler on Xenophon,s account of the life of Cyrus the great.Immitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Very Happy
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Leonnatus



Joined: 06 Feb 2005
Posts: 124

PostPosted: Sat Jun 18, 2005 3:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think its important to remember that Hephaestion was Alexander's top co-thinker on campaign and life generally but he never lost his loyalty to Olympias.And as the events following his death proved she never lost her loyalty to him. For me, they were of equal standing with him.
Also, one question that has always puzzled me more than most is,did The Great become bi-lingual? Would it not be logical, to a degree ,if given the equality he strongly believed in between Greeks and Persians, he did commit to learning the Persian language or significant chunks of it? I've checked sources but have found no clear answer to this question. Does anybody know?
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Alexandros_19



Joined: 15 Feb 2005
Posts: 1230
Location: Argentina

PostPosted: Sat Jun 18, 2005 5:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Leonnatus wrote:

Also, one question that has always puzzled me more than most is,did The Great become bi-lingual? Would it not be logical, to a degree ,if given the equality he strongly believed in between Greeks and Persians, he did commit to learning the Persian language or significant chunks of it? I've checked sources but have found no clear answer to this question. Does anybody know?


I think that's a great question. I read once that he had become bilingual, though I don't remember where and which one was the source quoted. I don't know if there is a clear answer about it in the main sources, the vulgate tradition (we should look for it), but I also think the most logical thing is that, because of what he thought of integration, he must have learned other languages in addition to Greek.
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Adriv



Joined: 17 Jan 2005
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 18, 2005 5:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, good question. I was thinking about that the other day. Gosh! Alexander was so smart Very Happy
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Silver Shield



Joined: 17 May 2005
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 30, 2005 10:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

To your question Alexanderr spoke 2 or maybe three langueges, attic greek which was the *** for most of the ancient world ancient Macedonian , and maybe Doric Greek but that has not been proven. When Alexander addresed his Infantry or companion cavalry i.e ptolomy, Heph etc he would addres them in macedonian the rest in Attic greek, Something his father introduced into macedonian culture. to rid the macedononians of Having the Barbarian tag, due to them not been able to spaek Attic
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Silver Shield



Joined: 17 May 2005
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 30, 2005 11:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

To your question Alexanderr spoke 2 or maybe three langueges, attic greek which was the *** for most of the ancient world ancient Macedonian , and maybe Doric Greek but that has not been proven. When Alexander addresed his Infantry or companion cavalry i.e ptolomy, Heph etc he would addres them in macedonian the rest in Attic greek, Something his father introduced into macedonian culture. to rid the macedononians of Having the Barbarian tag, due to them not been able to spaek Attic
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Vrettas



Joined: 06 Jan 2005
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 01, 2005 4:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was under the impression that the ancient Macedonian language was a Doric Greek dialect.
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Silver Shield



Joined: 17 May 2005
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 02, 2005 7:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you go to below link it explains that ancient macedonian language was a stand alone dialect and was one of three langauges spoken by ATG

http://www.geocities.com/indoeurop/tree/balk/macedonian.html
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Efstathios



Joined: 22 Jul 2005
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 22, 2005 4:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Let me reply in some of the questions that have been adressed here.

A) About Alexander's sexuality.We dont know if he was a bi,or straight.The usual sentence that *** was a natural practise in ancient greece is false and does not apply to all occassions.There were straight men as well as bi and gay men.As there are today.(See Plato's Laws where he suggests that homosexuality was brought to greece by the Dorian race,and he thinks of it as a plague).The difference is that in some cultures of ancient greece *** was more spread but in some others the opposite.In the Macedonian culture *** was existant but that doesn't mean that Alexander was a bi.
The main sources that indicate that are Curtius (The roman senate who is considered unreliable and gossip's writer) ,Plutarch (who says that some gossips implied that Bagoas was Alexander's eromenos) and Athenaus.
But Plutarch also gives us hints about the opposite,where he says that in 2 occasions, they wanted to bring youngsters as a gift to Alexander and he was very angry and kept asking what sameless things had they seen on him in order to do such a thing.

There is nowhere mentioned that Hephaestion was Alexander's lover.We know that Alexander loved him as a dear friend, and because Alexander was influenced by Hiliad (of Homer) he saw this friendship similar to Achillees and Patroclus' one.
Let there be no missundestanding about friendships like this among the ancient greeks.They had a very strict ethical code and the spiritual admiration of their friend was what they desired, not the body.There are various sources that indicate this and mostly Spartan and Athenian sources.

So the truth is that we really dont know if he was a bi or not.But what does it matter anyway?

B) About the "barbarian" word.The greeks named barbarians all these people that did not have the same language,gods and culture.Meaning all other races outside the ancient borders of greece.Macedonians were considered as semi-barbarians by Demosthenes because he was against Philip's and Alexander's politics.But when Demosthenes had been in Macedonia years ago as a diplomat he admired the macedonian culture,he understood the macedonian language pretty well and did not complain about it and back then he did not call macedonians "barbarians".He did so later because of interests.

The link that i saw here about the Macedonian language has many errors.It was a greek dialect (with a heavy accent,as Scottish is to the british) but the greeks had no problem understanding it.We can see that in some sources.

The word barbarian was not always used with a negative meaning.But later on,in Alexander's time Aristotles used it to imply that the Persians were inferior than the greeks because of their extreme customs and ethics (It was common practise in Persia and amongst kings to mary their sisters,daughters and generally their own relatives).

The greeks some times thought of other races as inferior,because they had no theater,philosophy and other things that the greeks had and implied an advanced civilization.SO yes in a way they were racists.One of the first greeks to think differently was Alexander who believed tat with the proper education, all people could be equal.

If anyone wants me to quote from the sources here,tell me,i will do so.
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apro



Joined: 22 Jul 2005
Posts: 10

PostPosted: Fri Jul 22, 2005 5:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Silver Shield wrote:
To your question Alexanderr spoke 2 or maybe three langueges, attic greek which was the *** for most of the ancient world ancient Macedonian , and maybe Doric Greek but that has not been proven. When Alexander addresed his Infantry or companion cavalry i.e ptolomy, Heph etc he would addres them in macedonian the rest in Attic greek, Something his father introduced into macedonian culture. to rid the macedononians of Having the Barbarian tag, due to them not been able to spaek Attic


Attic Greek was not the *** language spoken back then. Attic was the dialogue spoken only by the Athenians. Other Hellenistic people like the Macedonians, Spartans, Epirotes, Thessalians spoke their own Greek dialogues. In modern Greece you still have different Greek dialects spoken in various different places that is hard to be understood by other Greeks. For example in addition to speaking common Greek, understood by everyone in the country, there are still people who also speak Pontiaka, Creten, Cyprian, Epirotika dialects not understood by other Greeks.

The common language that you are refering to was the Hellenistic Greek - Koiné. Yes, it was based on the Attic dialect BUT it was significalty different from the original Attic spoken by the Athenians which is why its called Koine Greek. Alexander was instrumental in combining the various different Greek dialects to form the "Koiné" dialect (Κοινή; Greek for "common"). The language was taught to the inhabitants of the regions that Alexander conquered, turning Greek into a world language.
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apro



Joined: 22 Jul 2005
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 22, 2005 6:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Vrettas wrote:
I was under the impression that the ancient Macedonian language was a Doric Greek dialect.


Knowledge of the language is very limited because there are no surviving Macedonian texts. The only body of authentic Macedonian words surviving is mainly from coin inscriptions and from the 5th century lexicon of Hesychius of Alexandria, amounting to about 700 words and proper names which are confidently identifiable as being Greek. Some of them are not easily reconciled with standard Greek phonology but that could be of Illyrian and Thracian influence to the language. The majority of them are definately Greek.

There is a 5th century BC comedy called "Macedonians" by the Athenian poet Stratties, where the Macedonian speech is clearly presented as a form of a Greek dialogue. In ancient Greek plays actors would show that a character was of non Greek origin by having him speak only in this form: bar-bar-bar-bar [the word barbaric was derived from this] meaning he is speaking in a foreing tongue not understood by other Hellenics. Greek characters spoke in Greek but with different accents to show they were Hellenic but from different Hellenic regions. In the play "Macedonians", all actors playing Macedonians spoke in a Greek dialect with accents.
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apro



Joined: 22 Jul 2005
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 22, 2005 9:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Efstathios wrote:
Macedonians were considered as semi-barbarians by Demosthenes because he was against Philip's and Alexander's politics.But when Demosthenes had been in Macedonia years ago as a diplomat he admired the macedonian culture,he understood the macedonian language pretty well and did not complain about it and back then he did not call macedonians "barbarians".He did so later because of interests.
.



Demosthenes is not the most unbiased source in what the ancient Athenians really thought or felt on this issue. As you mentioned his movites were mostly politically based. Also twice Demosthenes tried to rally the Athenians against the Macedonians and both times he failed:

Once right before Athen's fell under Philip and a second time AFTER Athen's was under Macedonian rule.

The other thing is that Demosthenes was only half Greek. According to Theopompus, his father, Demosthenes Sr., was an Athenian citizen of "good rank and quality" but his mother was a descended of one Gylon, who fled his country upon an accusation of treason. In fact Aeschines calls her "a barbarian woman", not that Aeschines view on this was very unbiased 'cause he did have an axe to grind against Demosthenes. But the point I'm trying to make here is that this kind of behavior was common for Greeks to make accusations such as these against each other and fight one another in the name of politics.

Demosthenes was one of many Athenian envoys sent to Philip II of Macedon to create a peace treaty. Another of these envoys was Aeschines, an Athenian politician. Philip was suspicious of Demosthenes' eloquent speech and saw him as a threat. He negotiated only with Aeschines who thought resistance to Philip was futile and believed in peace at any cost was required. The two men returned to Athens as enemies.

Upon their return Demosthenes' led the prosecution of his fellow envoys, including Aeschines, for treason but he lost due to his 'moral values' being compromised. Aeschines accuses Demosthenes' of sexual and gender impropriety. Aeschines even called Demosthenes' nickname, Batalos(*** in Greek) into focus and frequently commented on Demosthenes' "unmanly and womanish temper":

"If anyone took those dainty little coats and soft shirts off you ... and took them round for the jurors to handle, I think they'd be quite unable to say, if they hadn't been told in advance, whether they had hold of a man's clothing or a woman's."
-Aeschines-

Demosthenes was also implicated in passive homosexuality and prostitution of the youth Aristion:

"There is a certain Aristion, a Plataean..., who as a youth was oustandingly good-looking and lived for a long time in Demosthenes' house. Allegations about the part he was playing [lit., 'undergoing or doing what'] there vary, and it would be most unseemly for me to talk about it."
-Aeschines-

Contrary to some beliefs homosexuality was frowned up on by many Greeks, believe it or not. I'm not saying it didn't go on, only that it wasn't as widely accepted as some people believe.

Even after the fall of Athen's to Macedonia, Aeschines and Demosthenes continued to battle in the public forum with Oration of Aeschines against Ctesiphon and with Demosthenes' defense On the Crown.
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Efstathios



Joined: 22 Jul 2005
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 23, 2005 1:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

And we cannot know for sure if the rumors about Demosthenes were true.There was a special and strict law about this ocassion.The law that said that if a man was living in another man's house with all expenses paid and therefore acting as a male "hetera" aka prostitute,was deprived from his political rights.And i think that both participants were,but i do not remember this detail exactly.So i think that in such ocassions the Athenians were very strict and if some rumors existed about Demosthenes they would investigate him and bring him to trial.
But on the other hand the politics' scene of Athens suffered from a degree of corruption so Demosthenes may have got away with it.Who knows...
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