Alexander was equally confident, as he marched the army south, having
first sent Hephaestion on with the fleet and the seige equipment: If
Tyre fell, surely no city could withstand him. Nevertheless, Gaza
turned out to be a very tough proposition. The seige towers turned out
to be all but useless, sinking deep into the sand that surrounded the
city. In addition, skirmishes with defending raiders were frequent and
bloody. Alexander himself suffered a serious arrow wound in the
shoulder, but characteristically, impatient with physical limitations,
he ignored the pain but set about to pull off another engineering
miracle. He had his men build a wall of sand completely encircling the
city and as high as the hill on which it stood. His heavy catapaults
were then pulled up ramps to the top, from there to launch a barrage
from all sides.
Soon the walls began to give way, and after savage fighting, Gaza fell.
After the final action, Alexander was wounded again, this time by an
artillery stone that smashed into his leg and broke it. Still, he
pressed on, for the road lay open to the richest plum of the ancient
This is one of the few times that Hephaestion is mentioned in most
texts on the subject of Alexander. It is interesting that Hephaestion
is invested with power while Parmenio is still very much in command, as
it is most unusual for him to be mentioned in most books that I have
It appears to me that Alexander is placing great confidence in his
abiity to be an advance man.
Laura is quite interesting in her decision to emphasize the wounds that
Alexander receives but at the same time dismisses them to some degree,
not that he could do that totally, but he appears to place his emphasis
on his need to accomplish his goal rather than nursing his own wounds.
Her choice of the word characteristically appeals to me as she implies
that Alexander shrugs off his wounds. Later, we realize that he truly
does not since he makes certain that everyone remember that he too has
suffered frequently and seriously in his leadership of this army.
How he managed to carry on with a broken leg is something to consider,
and I notice that she omits the story of his treatment of the leader of
Gaza which I will omit also. I do not believe it either.
A thought occurred to me when reading this paragraph and that is what
Alexander would have done to Sparta, as Gaza makes me think of Sparta
also. Everyone in the region except Gaza gave in to Alexander and his
rulership, but when Gaza did not, Alexander proved Gaza to be in the
wrong by defeating them so decisively.
I will take liberties in my comments occasionally drawing upon the
experiences that I have in my memory sessions, and her mention of his
ingenious method of surrounding the city and then drawing his seige
engines up the ramps made me once again recall Alexander's mental
capacity and his state of genius. This kind of engineering genius is
something that is innate in Alexander's mental capacity, something that
most ordinary people would never understand, and probably only a few
true genius personalities would comprehend even. He has the mental
talents of an omnisicient godlike being whose intellect instantly
fathoms the situation, realizes the problem, and then as quickly
realizes a solution. Very few people have this innate ability, but it
is one which distinguishes Alexander from all other men around him, and
why it is that he is so revered, so acknowledged, and so celebrated.
Perhaps the gurus of India will appreciate the way in which Alexander
semingly shrugs off his wounds. As again, mind over matter is what
mends his wounds as he moves on to achieve his goals. Alexander is a
mentalist whose mental thoughts enable him to heal quickly rather than
spin into a feel for sorry himself mode where he would nurse his wounds
to prolong the agony.
There is a lot in this short paragraph to consider. I frankly am
impressed with the choices that Laura has made to develop her look at
Post a Comment