Friday, April 20, 2012

The Children's Plutarch - F.J. Gould (1910)

"The Children's Plutarch - Tales of the Greeks" by F. J. Gould, 1910.


"After Philip died Alexander set out to conquer Asia. Already the people of Greece and Macedonia looked upon him as a man of power, for already he had done great deeds in battle. He visited the city of Corinth, where a meeting of Greek captains and statesmen was held..."

"...Persian horsemen rushed down the steep slopes and charged the cavalry of Alexander, and the king's helmet was split by a battle-axe. Just then an officer named Clitus slew the holder of the battle-axe with his spear. Later on in the fight Alexander's horse (not the proud creature of whom I have just told you) was killed under him. The victory lay with the Greeks (for the Macedonians were a kind of Greeks)."

"And now Darius (Da-ry-us), the sultan, or king, of Persia, had come forth with a host of half a million warriors to meet the Greek foe; and he hoped to deal Alexander a deadly blow when he met him in the mountains of Cilicia (Sy-lis-ia)..."

"On the way they attacked a castle which stood on the top of a steep hill. Among the band of Greeks who were to lead the onset was a young fellow named Alexander..."

"Well, before the assault had gone far a group of men came out of the fort and asked to see the Greek king, for they wished to make an offer to surrender the place..."

"Dreadful was the battle which Alexander fought with the Indian Prince Porus. This Indian was very tall, and he rode on the back of a very large elephant. Many of his followers were also mounted on these huge beasts. Greek courage did not flinch before the Indian elephants or the Indian arrows..."

"...Pleased with the Indian's answer, he gave him back all his land, which he was to rule as governor under the chief kingship of Alexander. In the midst, however, of this great triumph, a sadness came upon the Greek king..."

"...Then the Greek warriors tramped a weary march along the shore of the Persian gulf; over sand, dust, stones; under the hot sun; in a region where little food could be got..."

"...He had broken the rule of the proud kings of Persia, who had so often marched armies to the West, and tried to make slaves of the Greeks. And where the Greeks went they took their books and poetry and music, and so gave new ideas and new manners to the folk who were less learned than themselves. But these deeds had puffed up Alexander's soul with pride..."


"Poor Athens! This fair city by the sea had many a trouble to bear at this time. It was the time when the Greeks of the north—the stout warriors of Macedonia—were becoming masters of the neighboring lands; the time of King Philip and of Alexander the Great. Phocion did not think the men of Athens were strong enough and wise enough to keep free; he thought it would be better for them to own the Macedonians as their leaders and lords..."


"...While he was yet a very young man he went to and fro in Asia, waging war against the Arabs, from whom he once captured seven hundred camels; or against various Greek princes. For you must know that after the death of Alexander the Great large lands in Asia, Egypt, etc., were shared among his captains, so that there were Greek rulers over many foreign countries"

"It may amuse you to hear how one of the prince's friends took the news of a victory to the old King of Macedon. Demetrius fought with one hundred and eighty ships against one hundred and fifty ships of the King of Egypt (this king was also a Greek)..."

"His body having been burned after the manner of the Greeks, the ashes that remained were put into an urn of gold..."

[F. J. Gould, The Children's Plutarch - Tales of the Greeks, New-York and London 1910]

Sources: Heritage-History


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