Inside the Head of Alexander the Great Today I am much honored to have Alexander the Great before me today. Alexander the Great, born 356 AD, was known for not only being the son of Philip II, but for being king of Macedonia. At the age of 20 after his father had become assassinated, Alexander took on the role of king. He also took command of the military group: the Corinthian League City-States, which had over 48,000 soldiers. He trained his army so good that they practically ruled the entire West including Egypt, Persia, and Greece. For starters, could you tell us a little about your horse, Bucephalus? A lot of people have heard rumors about him, but we want to know what he really means to you.
~ Bucephalus actually means a lot to me. I remember the day when I bought him. There was a crowd of people all trying to get on Bucephalus, but he would just not give in. Bucephalus would just go mad, kicking his legs and neighing all over the place until they left him alone. I was the only one that was able to tame him; my father was impressed by this and bought Bucephalus. Unfortunately, Bucephalus got shot with an arrow during battle and is no longer with me. It still hurts my heart till this day; I loved that horse.
How was your childhood? What did it feel like to study with one of our greatest philosophers, Aristotle, and how did you feel when your father took you away from him?
~ My childhood was pretty good for the most part. My father would rarely be home due to leading his armies of the Corinthian Military League. I always tended to be a bit fearless, which is one reason I decided to take on Bucephalus when no one else could. I loved talking to Aristotle about science so I was devastated when I got taken away.
How does it feel knowing that you're the ruler of such a large amount of land? Can you sleep at night knowing that many people want you dead?
~ Well, I actually feel very honored to have this grand title set on me. I feel that I have worked so hard to get to this point in my life, and I think that my father would have been very proud of my success if he were alive to see it. It does put a heavy weight on my shoulder knowing that I’m never really safe, no matter how many guards I may call by my side. I guess that’s what you can expect being a ruler.
When going into battle, are you ever afraid? Do you have any pre-battle rituals that you perform, and are you afraid to die in battle?
~ It’s not that I’m scared to die, more like worried. I’m worried about what might happen to my land, my empire and my military recruits. The thing that worries me the most is who the new ruler will be over all of my land. Before battle I do try to make sure that my sword is extra sharp. I sharpen my sword 100 times EXACTLY and then lay it under my pillow.
Dear Demetrius: Help! I have a slave here who has gotten injured while doing one of his duties assigned to him. He claims that he was in the fields farming and scraped the inside of his hand against one of our olive tree thorns, causing him to bleed. His hand became a little bit swollen. I tried to tend him by taking out the thorn and just leaving the wound to get some air, I thought that this would make the swelling go down but it just made his hand even worse! I cannot have blood dripping onto my food that I will have served to my family; I cannot have infected hands infecting my crops as well. What should I do? In Critical Need Dear Critical: One of the biggest mistakes that you could’ve done was try to treat the wound by yourself when you didn’t know what you were doing. He may have an infection, which is probably the reason for the swelling. My advice is to bring him to a specialist doctor. They will be able to treat his wounds with herbs, such as vinegar. The doctor may even be able to use plants, animals or other substances. Hopefully, your slave will be able to farm again in a few days.
Dear Demetrius: My family and I have been living in this area for 10 years. It’s been all quite well except for the main fact that we are barely able to survive with the food that we have. We live on the mountains and it’s very hard to farm and produce food on the land because of its lack of fertile land. Our family has grown big and I don't think that we will be able to produce enough food for all of us to survive. Farmer Family
Dear Farmer: Why don’t you guys just pack your bags and move to somewhere that is more suitable for farming; staying where you are now will not do you or your family any justice.
What are they? How did they get there? Why do we need them?
Many people have noticed the strange structures that are being erected in Rome here recently. As I was going to the Forum, I overheard several conversations regarding these new formations. I wondered as to why Rome had not made a public announcement about them; to be sure they realized that the people would be interested in what they are, as well as how they will be used. For those of you that donâ€™t know, these strange structures are called aqueducts. Their job is to transport water into Rome. As you well know, Rome does not have an abundant supply of drinking water. While it is true that we have water all around us, it is too salty and polluted, therefore bad on our stomachs. This, combined with the exponentially growing number of Roman citizens, has led to an all-time shortage of water.
Roman engineers, aware of the problem, began to work on a solution. Their job, seeing as no fresh water is near Rome, was to find a way to transport water from the mountains into the city. Water is plentiful in the mountains; it even comes right out of the ground. In addition, fewer people live in the mountains compared to the amount of people in Rome. This makes the mountains a perfect place to get water.
The engineerâ€™s solution is most certainly an ingenious one. They are currently building a series of arches with a trough at the top to move the water. The engineers realized that this alone is not enough. They are also having to tunnel through hills and mountains in order to keep the water flowing. The engineers are making sure to try and dig deep underground to get the pure, spring water. This construction process is estimated to take several years. The construction force itself will be made up of thousands of workers. 9
The engineers are building the aqueducts out of a various amount of materials such as stone, brick, and even cement. If the aqueducts work as successfully as the engineers plan, they may even make an additional income source for Rome from our surrounding cities that may also be in need of clean water. Though the results could be marvelous, we will need to be patient for we do not know how long this build will take. The engineers do know that they will have to take their time and be precise in order to make the aqueducts of the highest quality. After all, we need to remember that this is the first time that engineers have tried to build something like this. Although the aqueducts are currently being built, Rome is still having a difficult time with cleanliness. None of our citizens can be properly clean due to the lack of pure, un-polluted water. The citizens still have to dispose their bodily wastes by burying them underground because the Roman engineers havenâ€™t fully found a different method. This is starting to become more and more of a problem due to the increasing population of our region.
We are still in the beginning stages of using the aqueducts, so there are still a lot of improvements to be done to provide clean water to Rome, and maybe even more innovative construction systems to advance our great city. Hopefully, this new waterway system will fix all of the problems that we have been facing. Through this wonderful feat of modern engineering, we will be able to get fresh water to our city. This is currently the only kind of water transportation of this scale in the world. I think that it stands as great proof of Roman ingenuity. I also believe that it will show others that Rome is, by far, the most advanced and superior nation. Who knows, maybe this technology will help build cities in lands unknown.
Dear Aurelia: I am hosting a special event where all my friends and I are getting together and are having a party. The theme we are having is ‘Rome in Time’. I looked all over but could not find not a single Roman dish that would actually seem good to eat. I’m looking for something that is simple and will not cause me too much trouble to make. I just want my friends to feel and taste what it’s like celebrating in the Roman time. Food Critic Dear Food Critic: Sure, let’s see if this will help. You could start off by giving them Boiled Eggs with Pine Nut Sauce as the appetizer. It’s very easy to make. You would have to get four boiled eggs, two ounces of pine nuts, three tablespoons of vinegar, one teaspoon of honey and a pinch of pepper and lovage or celery leaf. What you would have to do is soak the pine nuts in vinegar for three to four hours before you actually cook the meal, so make sure that you have enough time in between your special event to make this meal. You would then have to mix the rest of the ingredients sauces together. You could put the sauces in some sort of sauce boat; that way, your guests can serve themselves. I'm sure everyone will love this meal and you’ll have all your friends coming back for more.
Dear Aurelia: I am having a problem with my clothing. They don’t always seem to fit right and every time I wear my tunic, it always finds a way to slide down. I feel that its too short for my liking. This has been an absolute problem especially because it could happen anytime and I don't want it to get in the way of my daily cleaning. Please help me out. Tunic Lady
Dear Tunic: Maybe the problem is that you're wearing the wrong tunic for the wrong gender. They are fairly similar to the ones of males, so I can see how you got the two mixed up. Male tunics tend to be shorter than the ones of the average women. One way to keep your tunic from falling down is to maybe add in a strophion in the mid-section of your body to keep your clothes sturdy.
Julius Caesar Has Been MURDED! What sad news we have here. Julius Caesar, the great military leader known all over Rome has been brutally murdered! Our insider has stated that Caesar was in the senate chamber waiting to speak with the senators when all of the senators came out and ambushed him stabbing him 23 times. It is said that Gaius Cassius was behind all of this. Why would anyone want to kill him, it’s not like he didn’t help the poor by creating jobs or anything. Sounds like little Gaius was jealous of Caesars’ success. Or maybe he just wanted the throne for himself…
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Who knows but stay tuned for more stories! -Your Friend, Alexandra
To the Editor
I first became aware of the issue discussed last week while on a visit to Athens. As I am sure you recall, last weekâ€™s magazine discussed an arising conflict between the two city-states of Athens and Sparta. I would not be bringing this to attention except for the fact that, during my visit to Athens, all I heard was talk about the conflict. Everywhere I went, someone was always discussing the matter. This being said, my visit was ruined. I could not relax, nor could I enjoy the wonders of Athens. This extremely disturbed me as I had been looking forward to that vacation. In addition, I consider my time there, and my money, to be a waste. Both my wife and I were unable to let go of our problems because of the disagreement and conflict that is occurring between Athens and Sparta. I have since then begun to envelope myself in the conflict seeing as it is not soon going away. After reading last weekâ€™s issue of this magazine, I have discovered that Athens and Sparta, the two most powerful, and by far the most influential city-states, are at odds with each other. Through further investigation, I have learned that Sparta dislikes Athens because of scholarly ideals. Athens, on the other hand, dislikes Sparta due to the rights that their women have. This caused me much dismay because, in my eyes, I do not see why these city-states cannot coexist. I believe that Athens and Sparta should simply ignore each other and live their separate lives. People in Athens could simply not visit Sparta, and in the same way, people in Sparta could not visit Athens. I would like to suggest that in future issues, you encourage your writers to elaborate on the topic. I feel that if more people become aware of what is occurring between Athens and Sparta, then they can work to help the two city-states come to a diplomatic solution. If this occurs, then I believe that the city-states could live in peace. I thank you for writing about this topic and I implore you to continue to write about the situation. As previously discussed, I truly believe that the way to end this conflict is to educate the public. Seeing your current position, I think that you would be a great medium to help educate the community. Thank you for your consideration and for your time, Eos Drakos
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