Augustus and Alexander

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Alexander the Great and Augustus Caesar have proven to be two of the worlds best leaders. These men were brilliant and a great influence on their people, bringing great wealth and prosperity to their nation as well as expanding their empires. Alexander and Augustus each came to power at a very young age and ruled in a totalitarian manner, with their main weapon being their military. However, even though they had similarities, each was very different. The following will prove my thesis.

After the death of Prince Philip of Macedon, Alexander, then twenty years old, inherited the sole authority and command of his Macedonia. Alexander was well built and strong with a love for hunting and combat and was "as quick to kill a man as an animal." Alexander was as passionate about winning battles as the glory that accompanied it thus, it comes as no surprise that it is written his favorite book was the Iliad that his favorite character was Achilles. Due to the fact that he survived so many dangers, many began to see him as invincible or god like. Before one of his battles, Alexander prayed in front of his army and said that if he were a descendant of Zeus, then the gods would protect him and his army. After the battle was won, his men (many of whom believed in the Gods) thought Alexander was favored by supernatural powers.

Augustus Caesar, or Octavian as he was then known, was eighteen years old when his adoptive great-uncle Caesar, dictator of Rome was murdered. This left a power vacuum in the already crumbling Roman Republic. Shortly afterward, the Second Triumvirate of Rome was formed and it included Caesar's lieutenant, Mark Antony, a general named Lepidus and Augustus. Lepidus was soon forced out of the Triumvira...

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...ts are less certain. For instance, "Alexander never groomed a successor to replace him after his death." And after his death the empire fell almost immediately.

Both Alexander the Great and Augustus Caesar were great leaders in their time. However, history has proven that Augustus was the better leader. Both men did enjoy loyalty from their people and both established large empires, bringing wealth and success to their nation. Although both men had great minds, it was Augustus who thought ahead to the future, securing the future with peace, not war, as Alexander did. Also, in securing a successor, Augustus secured the success of the Roman Empire for two hundred years. Alexander did not secure a successor and as we've seen, his peaceful Macedonia did not last long after his death. Perhaps if Alexander had lived longer, history might have been different.

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