Alexander's Path

By Freya Stark

“Magnificent...a wonderful and encouraging account of her trip alongside the beach of Turkey and again into time.” (The Observer)

this can be the tale of back-country Turkey, a space that even within the twentieth century continues to be stubbornly tied to antiquity. the writer traveled via it via truck and horseback, frequently by myself. She reached areas little visited and not written approximately. the rustic humans welcomed her with generosity unrelated to their meager assets. She used to be touring in time to boot, and located value in recalling the lifetime of Alexander the good. Twenty-two centuries in the past he was once the 1st to dream of a united international.

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Nicanor, Parmenion’s son, had introduced them up and anchored them at Lade, that is now a hummock within the Maeander reaches, yet used to be then one of many estuary islands, infamous for a Greek defeat a century and a part ahead of, and shut in to the city. The dialog has come right down to us with nonetheless a faint contact of that inflammation with which Ptolemy, or the guy who stored the magazine which he copied, wrote down Parmenion’s sayings. those have been younger infantrymen jotting their histories, and Parmenion—the guy whom Philip had considered ‘the basically general’—was over sixty, surrounded by way of many really able younger generals within the making.

The following and there around the stony degrees, behind La’ara for example, one might locate channels reduce in rock 5 - 6 metres deep and 5 or 6 toes huge, bridged by means of roughly-shaped boulders, the place the onerous water runs tunnelled for plenty of miles. The rivers that supply those waters are generally wasted, for they lower too deep for irrigation and basically the goats climb down via zigzag millennial stone-cut crannies, and drink the place the shadows wreathe themselves in with the circulate. beneficial or no, each water of Pamphylia is gorgeous, even if or not it's the Termessus torrent that dries around its islands in summer season; or Kirk-göz on the foot of the passes, spilling lakes between water-lilies for coot and heron; or Düden, the traditional Catarrhactes, that spouts out of 2 holes within the ground of the obvious, and widens below its lengthy crooked bridge in marshy mirrors, and throws itself east of Antalya over honeycomb cliffs into the ocean.

We handed less than the citadel of Snakes, the place the stubble used to be burning, and storks, like diplomats with slim shoulders and well-tailored cut-away outfits, walked approximately with none indicators of delight, swallowing frogs that jumped from the flames. We handed Missis, the traditional Mopsuestia, a shabby little city of degradation, whose bridge used to be equipped by means of Valerian and repaired through Justinian, and Walid and Mu’tasim,7 while the Pyramus was once one of many rivers of Paradise and sailed via Tancred’s galleys;8 we ran via cotton fields, whose cultivation started with the Crusaders and was once renewed through Muhammad Ali; and got here to Adana, packed with noisy streets; and to Tarsus around the yellow Cydnus—not transparent because it as soon as was once, yet thick with dust, as though Time and all ruins have been within it—between banks the place Alexander bathed and the Caliph Ma’mun died, and Julian the Apostate used to be buried.

L. Myres: Who have been the Greeks? London, 1949. H. A. Ormerod: Piracy within the historic international. London, 1924. H. W. Parke: Greek Mercenary squaddies. Oxford, 1933. B. C. Rider: The Greek apartment. Cambridge, 1916. C. Ritter: Die Erdkunde von Asien. Band IX, Kein-Asien II. Berlin, 1859. M. Rostovtzeff: Social and financial historical past of the Hellenistic Age. Oxford, 1953. W. W. Tarn and G. T. Griffith: Hellenistic Civilzation. London, 1952. Cecil Torr: historic Ships. London, 1894. S. Toy: A background of Fortification. London, 1955. R. E. Wycherley: How the Greeks equipped towns.

3–6; PLUTARCH, sixteen. 3). yet now, whereas Alexander held again, Parmenion used to be for risking a naval conflict. Defeat, he stated, wouldn't be very severe, because the Persian military used to be besides ideal. And an omen were seen—an eagle perched on shore on the stern of the Macedonian ships. Alexander wouldn't likelihood a repulse at sea. it'd be lunacy to stand the crews of the Cyprians and Phoenicians together with his personal who had now not but accomplished their education, and with the Greeks ‘ready to blaze into insurrection’ on the first whisper of a naval catastrophe.

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