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Amazon.com: 14 Rezensionen
7 von 8 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
A sharp philosophical satire 30. Januar 2004
Von ilmk - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch
Alexander at the World's end pokes a very sharp satirical wit at ancient Greece, targeting, in particular, Athens, Alexander the Great and philosophy in a manner that is exhilarating.
This is the story of Euxenus, whom we find reminiscing at the end of his life to Phryzeutzis about his life, his philosophy and the nature of fate.
Euxenus was one of seven brothers who find themselves parentless in the Athenian democracy just after the expulsion of the Thirty Tyrants and coinciding with the birth of Alexander. Having each been farmed out to the worst teachers in their professions (in Euxenus' case to Diogenes the Yapping Dog philosopher) Euxenus finds himself on the wrong end of a white pebble, disinherited and starting his own successful DIY prophecy business. After nine years of moving up in the philosophy circles our erstwhile hero finds himself part of an Athenian delegation to Philip II of Macedon who has just seen fit to storm the city of Olynthus. A subsequent opportune meeting with the young Alexander and a delightful educational episode involving bees leads to his appointment as a tutor to the future military great. After his acceptance in the Macedonian military household we follow as the `Athenian wizard' and his snake in a jar (which Alexander makes come true) starts to educate the Macedonian prince and his entourage to open their minds. The irony is that, for a man who mocks Aristotle as much as Euxenus does (and the story of the mythical town at the end of the world ending in Aristotle's public humiliation is hilarious) his logic is remarkably peripatetic.
By mid-book, Euxenus finds himself on the receiving end of olive stones fate as Philip orders him to be the oceia (founder) of the new colony of Olbia on the Black Sea. Setting off with his new and angry wife, Theano they arrive at the intended site and Euxenus is forced to experience the administrative problems of leading a group settling on land near an annoyed Scythian tribe with all its tribulations. Inadvertent raids, a suspected affair between wife and merchant-friend Tyrsenius and getting the colony up and running take us through the next ten years as his son grows alongside our erstwhile hero. Meanwhile, Philip II dies after Charonea and Alexander assumes the throne. Eventually they manage to self-produce their own alcohol thus giving them a good reason to name their city officially - Antolbia. During the celebration an open city gate allows a band of Scythians to storm the city, killing many founders and Euxenus' son. The repercussions are enormous as Theano leaves and the Antolbians finally destroy the neighbouring village. Euxenus leaves for Athens and on his arrival back home learns of the sack and destruction of Antolbia.
After attempting to become the perfect farmer he suddenly finds himself on the receiving end of orders from Alexander to be the oceist for the city of Sogdania and during his trip to the city comes across his surviving brother Eudaemon, breaking his leg in the process.
During the course of one evening as Eudaemon is laid up, he explains to Euxenus why the latter has messed his life up so much simply by association and how Yapping Dog philosophy has so greatly shaped Alexander's ideology to the point that Euxenus the Philosopher is now the second most renowned man in the Empire. Eudaemon goes through his appointment as Keeper of the Bees, to the siege of Tyre all the while under the influence of mind-altering drugs in an attempt to combat the effect of bee stings to his ironic destiny as saviour of Alexander whilst attempting his assassination. It is a faultless exercise in how ideologies can be rooted in persuasion rather than genuine theory as, in a magnificent irony, Euxenus finds his offhand philosophy has shaped and affected an entire world.
By the end Euxenus finishes his tired autobiography to Phryzeutzis whilst sitting in Sogdania reinforces the underlying premise of the book that "Alexander was a force of nature. He was a force of history" that was guided by Yapping Dog philosophy. Holt's grasp of his subject matter is key to turning this subject into an extremely sharp piece of wit. His grasp of Athenian politics, Macedonian history and both the Greek language and philosophy means that the text is littered with subtle nuances and pokes neat fun at ancient philosophy in an endearing attempt to humanize legendary characters. This is a magnificent effort from Holt's pen and well worth the time to read.
4 von 4 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Fine Historical Fiction, Sadly Funny 4. Oktober 2003
Von Richard Martin - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch
Alexander at the World's End is the nostalgic biography of Alexander the Great, as described by someone who had been a minor character but a constant observer in Alexander's life. As in Olympiad and The Walled Orchard, Holt writes in a first person voice which tells history as a real life but whose tone and character makes the history immediate. You don't need to know anything about Alexander, it'll teach what little you need to know and make you want to know much more about the characters it portrays. This book is written from the end of a life, about a man who died young and those who lived after. It is nostalgic, but wonderfully funny.
good background between academia and rest 13. Februar 2011
Von Meredith Folsom - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
In between more graduate level academic books on St. Augustine and for context, the contention of religions and philosophies, the fall of the Roman Empire, the beginning of Hellenism beginning with Alexander ... whew, such a lot of ground to cover, it helps to relax with a good, relevant historical novel. Academic Alexander in my studies began with Paula Fredriksen's "Augustine and the Jews: A Christian Defense of Jews and Judaism." As far as I can tell with only one semester of research into Alexander, Holt's novel is quite accurate. He brings in a lot of fact, cleverly hidden in amusing scenarios that surprise you into laughing out loud, a real sign of talent in my book. Theories and background on history, philosophy, sociology, politics, art, religion - he covers a lot of territory and does it very well. Highly recommended.
Wonderful to be able to find this book 18. März 2014
Von Stephen G. - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
Finding another book in this wonderful series is great. It's sad that these are out of print but great that one can find them on Amazon!
Love 23. Mai 2013
Von Courtney Graeff - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
Purchased this as a gift for a friend who has been collecting this Time-Life series for almost 20 years. This completed the collection and he said its the best book in the series. Must be as its hard to find in person. Gotta love Amazon for that.
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