Is Alexander the Great more like a Greek leader or a Near Eastern monarch? Justify your answer.

Alexander the Great is both like a Greek leader and a Near Eastern monarch because he was impacted by Greek philosophy while, at the same time, embracing the duties of a typical Near Eastern monarch, including those of a conqueror.

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Whether Alexander is more like a Greek leader or a monarch from the Near East depends upon the traits and qualities of Alexander that one opts to highlight. If one emphasizes Alexander’s education, then it’s reasonable to argue that Alexander has more in common with a Greek leader. Alexander’s dad was Philip II (the King of Macedon). To tutor Alexander, Philip II hired Aristotle. Aristotle was a student of Plato, who himself was a student of Socrates—all three are famous Greek philosophers. Supposedly, Alexander kept Aristotle’s works with him as he undertook his numerous military expeditions.

Alexander’s attachment to Aristotle and Greek thought makes it possible to position him as an example of Greek life and culture. It’s not too difficult to connect Alexander the Great’s image to that of Plato’s concept of the philosopher king. For many, Alexander the Great was a manifestation of Plato’s ideal ruler—a combination of sharp intelligence and military prowess.

However, it’s possible to assess Alexander the Great as an iteration of a Near Eastern monarch. Like the monarchs of the Near East, Alexander had to handle many roles. He had to be the head of state and the military leader. He had to make sure his land and subjects were in order while, at the same time, conquering new land and territory.

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