a response -to yours about Rome vs. Alexander!!!!

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Niko

a response -to yours about Rome vs. Alexander!!!!

Post by Niko »

Hello
im responding to your opinion about " What would have happend to war with Alexander the great vs. Rome. U chose Rome, how pathetic; i have just one thing to ask u to think about; "what happend when Atilla the Hun attacked- Rome? i'll tell u anyway, Rome was leveled from being mountains, Rome was broken , Rome was Challenged and Rome lost, Rome was suprised , and no wonder the only records we have about Atilla the hun was from Roman documents Titled ---"The scourge of God"
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Re: a response -to yours about Rome vs. Alexander!!!!

Post by marcus »

It's a little dangerous to compare Rome's encounter with Attila with a hypothetical encounter with Alexander, with nearly 800 intervening years. By the time the Huns began their merciless sweep across Western Europe Rome was suffering all sorts of internal turmoil, not least because those Christian types were ploughing their money into church building programmes, rather than military defences. The army was not a shadow of its former self.
While I do not think that Rome would have beaten Alexander, because at that time the Eternal City was at the other end of the scale - ie. an army that was not yet the incredible machine it was to be by the 1st century BC, a much smaller reserve of manpower due to a far more limited 'empire' (which meant that they weren't in a position to give other cities citizenship in order that their soldiers could join the Roman army) and probably countless other reasons... 800 years is a hell of a time period and therefore to compare the two is riddled with problems.
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Re: a response -to yours about Rome vs. Alexander!!!!

Post by Nicator »

...a very good point Marcus. A friend and I have this argument on the train quite often...who was better, Alexander or Caesar? While I contend without discussion that there were none better than Alexander, but Caesar was a good runner-up, he contends that Caesar was better because he had the advantage of the knowledge of what Alexander did, and could therefore use it against him on the hypethetical battlefield...i.e...Caesar would have known Alexanders tendancies. I, however countered with the fact that Alexander was so fast, and innovative (a truly original thinker, if ever there was one) that Caesar would be trying to guess what Alexander was up to, while Alexander whooped his Roman tail. If I recall correctly, didn't Caesar concede that Alexander was the best...saying something along the lines of "By the time Alexander was my age he had already conquered the world, while I am just a soldier"...Of course there is the somewhat biased opinion of Arrian (a roman greek) who claimed that Alexander was the first in arms...The battle goes on...later Nicator
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Re: a response -to yours about Rome vs. Alexander!!!!

Post by marcus »

Good points about Caesar, Nicator - sounds as if you have good train-journey discussions. I just start the crossword then fall asleep! <g>
This sort of links with a more recent thread on genes or environment - would geniuses like Caesar have managed what they did had Alexander not been there before?
I have also wondered whether it is fair to compare Alexander and Caesar based on their ages - on the one hand, Alexander was an absolute monarch who was given the chance to embark on his conquests at the age of 20. Caesar, on the other hand, was incredibly constrained by the Republican system of Rome, where you *had* to reach a certain age before you could hold certain offices... therefore, what might Caesar have achieved had he not had those constraints? Not sure there's a definitive answer, but it's an interesting debate for your train journey!
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jasonxx

Post by jasonxx »

Reading this very early post I felt to add of interest. Very pertinant that a guy like Caesar. learning about Alexander and been able maybe to out think him.

I think that is the very thing that in my opinion makes Alexander The Greatest commander. That you couldnt predict therefore could never be ready for what was comming. Maybe if you guessed and got lucky. Alexanders strengths were inovation and the ability to addapt or change for any given situation.

I would say the Tyrians did feel pretty safe in the Island Fortress. The could be supplied by sea, the walls held for 10 years against Nebbacaneza. Yet the tenacity of Alexander brought it down. Caesar was a great strategist. But im sure even been prepaired Alexander would pull a rabbit out of the hat.

Besided up until and Including the Romans there was never a more complete war machine Than the Macedonians. Rome was predominately Infantry and the cavalry were as a rule crap.Hannibal had a good combination force which paid dividends against the predictable one dimensional Roman forces he trounced.

Alexander is the Steriotypical. You cant read nor know what hell do next. And thats basically impossible to judge or prepair for.You could never say he wont do this or he will do that you never know.

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Post by pankration »

This discussion gets even more complex when you consider that Caesar spent an inordinate amount of time and resources in fighting with other Romans. If the Senate had been completely supportive of his aims, he might have accomplished more in the area of imperialism. Alexander was free of those restraints and only had to deal with dissent near the end of his campaigns (and life).

In boxing they say what makes a great fighter are his opponents. Ali had Frazier. Leonard had Hagler. Alexander had the Persian Empire, arguably the greatest empire of that era. Caesar faced tough opponents like the Gauls but they were hardly the equivalent of the Persians. This goes for other opponents as well. Caesar was a great leader but he was not the GREAT.
jasonxx

Post by jasonxx »

Pankrat

I would argue the Gauls every bit as good as the Persians. With a subtle difference and a telling difference. As a whole a lot of the Persian forces were conscripts pressed to fight for the Persian overlords.

The Gauls were a force fighting for there freedom and those fighters are more formidable than conscripts. They were fighting for there very freedom. As with the Persian forces once the elite troops had been crushed the other levies would down tools and scarper.

Julius Caesar at Elesie was fantastic and demonstarted his brilliance as an entrenchment commander. He came upon Versengetrig heavily fortified on a hill then was cut off from the rear with another large force.Precarious for any commander. Yet he bottled them both in and systematically crushed them. I would wager a problem for any commannder even Alexander. Even though Alexander was in similar situation in Ilria and had to use his skill to beat Glaucius.

Kenny
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Post by pankration »

Jasonxx, point taken. When I stated that the Gauls were hardly the Persians I was referring to the numbers of men AND resources that Darius had available as opposed to the Gauls. There is no question that even up, the Gauls were far more ferocious fighters than the Persians (and you're right, most of whom were conscripts or mercenaries from a variety of backgrounds). Any commander fighting a people who are defending themselves is faced with a huge problem. Even Alexander had some of his most savage battles at seiges or chasing down small groups of tribesmen in Asia. I can't recall who said it (anyone game to find out who?) but an occupying force must be a MINIMUM of 4 times GREATER than those they are trying to beat in order to be successful. When generals like Alexander and Caesar overcome these odds it speaks to their brilliance as tacticians.
Caesar must also be given credit for developing the finest soldiers of his era, a fast moving professional army that was almost invincible. Later generals and caesars screwed them up but the fact that the Roman Empire lasted for hundreds of years speaks to Julius Caesar's vision.
jasonxx

Post by jasonxx »

Pank hAIL

Were on with numers. The gauls must have had nearly 200 000 men at Elesie. Yet Members in this Forum are adament that the Persians could never manage or muster the hundreds of thousands mentioned at Gaugamela. I would argue indeed the Persians could and did muster such numbers.

With your reference to Caesar been an absolute Genius. I would argue he had his share of luck. He was indeed lucky against Pompey knew his game and how to beat Caesar. Pompey wanted to wait, Yet the armchair generals and senates were hungry for Caesar to be beaten, and seeing Pompeys numerical adavantage impelled him to attack. A real oportunity lost for Pompey and a fundamental military error.

Kenny
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Post by pankration »

I agree wholeheartedly with the numbers. Sources like Arrian in his "The Campaigns of Alexander" quote, "Darius' total force was estimated at 40,000 cavalry, 1,000,000 infantry, 200 scythe chariots, and a few elephants...". The translater cites two other sources: Curtius offers a figure of 200,000 for the infantry although some scholars accept this there is no evidence...His figure for cavalry is 45,000."

Regardless of which number is true, the Persians could easily muster hundreds of thousands of men.
jasonxx

Post by jasonxx »

Pank I dont see millions of men but reasonably accept hundreds of thousands.

kenny
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