Wars of Alexander the Great

Alexander fighting Persian king Darius III. From Alexander Mosaic of Pompeii, Naples, Naples National Archaeological Museum
The Kingdom of Macedon in 332 BC
Map of what would become Alexander's empire
Herma of Alexander (Roman copy of a 330 BC statue by Lysippus, Louvre Museum). According to Diodorus, the Alexander sculptures by Lysippus were the most faithful.
Alexander's decisive attack
A naval action during the siege, Drawing by André Castaigne
Alexander Mosaic, showing Battle of Issus, from the House of the Faun, Pompeii
Alexander's decisive attack
Alexander's first victory over Darius, the Persian king depicted in medieval European style in the 15th century romance The History of Alexander’s Battles
Map of the Persian Gate
Campaigns and landmarks of Alexander's invasion of the Indian subcontinent
A painting by Charles Le Brun depicting Alexander and Porus (Puru) during the Battle of the Hydaspes.
Asia in 323 BC, the Nanda Empire and Gangaridai Empire of Ancient India in relation to Alexander's Empire and neighbors

The Wars of Alexander the Great were a series of conquests that were carried out by Alexander III of Macedon from 336 BC to 323 BC. They began with battles against the Achaemenid Persian Empire, then under the rule of Darius III of Persia.

- Wars of Alexander the Great

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Philip II of Macedon

The king (basileus) of the ancient kingdom of Macedonia from 359 BC until his death in 336 BC. He was a member of the Argead dynasty, founders of the ancient kingdom, and the father of Alexander the Great.

Bust of Philip II of Macedon from the Hellenistic period; Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek
The wounding of Philip.
Map of the territory of Philip II of Macedon
Statue of Philip II, 350-400 AD. Rheinisches Landesmuseum Trier.
Roman medallion of Olympias, the fourth wife of Philip II and mother of Alexander the Great. From the Museum of Thessaloniki.
Pausanius assassinates King Philip during his procession into the theatre, 336 BC
Assassination of Philip of Macedon. 19th century illustration.
Philip II gold stater, with head of Apollo
Niketerion (victory medallion) bearing the effigy of king Philip II of Macedon, 3rd century AD, probably minted during the reign of Roman Emperor Alexander Severus
Great Tumulus of Aigai
The tomb of Philip II of Macedon at the Museum of the Royal Tombs in Vergina
The golden larnax and the golden grave crown of Philip
alt=The gilded silver diadem of Philip II, found in his tomb at Vergina. |The gilded silver diadem of Philip II, found in his tomb at Vergina.

However, his assassination by a royal bodyguard, Pausanias of Orestis, led to the immediate succession of his son Alexander, who would go on to invade the Achaemenid Empire in his father's stead.

Macedonia (ancient kingdom)

Ancient kingdom on the periphery of Archaic and Classical Greece, and later the dominant state of Hellenistic Greece.

The Kingdom of Macedonia in 336 BC (orange)
The entrance to one of the royal tombs at Vergina, a UNESCO World Heritage Site
The Kingdom of Macedonia in 336 BC (orange)
A silver octadrachm of Alexander I of Macedon ((r. 498 – 454)), minted c. 465–460 BC, showing an equestrian figure wearing a chlamys (short cloak) and petasos (head cap) while holding two spears and leading a horse
Macedon (orange) during the Peloponnesian War around 431BC, with Athens and the Delian League (yellow), Sparta and Peloponnesian League (red), independent states (blue), and the Persian Achaemenid Empire (purple)
A Macedonian didrachm minted during the reign of Archelaus I of Macedon ((r. 413 – 399))
A silver stater of Amyntas III of Macedon ((r. 393 – 370))
Map of the Kingdom of Macedon at the death of PhilipII in 336BC (light blue), with the original territory that existed in 431BC (red outline), and dependent states (yellow)
Alexander's empire and his route
The Stag Hunt Mosaic, c.300BC, from Pella; the figure on the right is possibly Alexander the Great due to the date of the mosaic along with the depicted upsweep of his centrally-parted hair (anastole); the figure on the left wielding a double-edged axe (associated with Hephaistos) is perhaps Hephaestion, one of Alexander's loyal companions.
A golden stater of Philip III Arrhidaeus ((r. 323 – 317)) bearing images of Athena (left) and Nike (right)
Paintings of Hellenistic-era military arms and armor from a tomb in ancient Mieza (modern-day Lefkadia), Imathia, Central Macedonia, Greece, 2nd centuryBC
The Temple of Apollo at Corinth, built c.540BC, with the Acrocorinth (i.e. the acropolis of Corinth that once held a Macedonian garrison) seen in the background
A tetradrachm minted during the reign of Antigonus III Doson ((r. 229 – 221)), possibly at Amphipolis, bearing the portrait image of Poseidon on the obverse and on the reverse a scene depicting Apollo sitting on the prow of a ship
The Kingdom of Macedonia (orange) under PhilipV ((r. 221 – 179)), with Macedonian dependent states (dark yellow), the Seleucid Empire (bright yellow), Roman protectorates (dark green), the Kingdom of Pergamon (light green), independent states (light purple), and possessions of the Ptolemaic Empire (violet purple)
A tetradrachm of Philip V of Macedon ((r. 221 – 179)), with the king's portrait on the obverse and Athena Alkidemos brandishing a thunderbolt on the reverse
Bronze bust of Eumenes II of Pergamon, a Roman copy of a Hellenistic Greek original, from the Villa of the Papyri in Herculaneum
The Vergina Sun, the 16-ray star covering the royal burial larnax of Philip II of Macedon ((r. 359 – 336)), discovered in the tomb of Vergina, formerly ancient Aigai
Hades abducting Persephone, fresco in the small Macedonian royal tomb at Vergina, Macedonia, Greece, c.340BC
Fresco of an ancient Macedonian soldier (thorakites) wearing chainmail armor and bearing a thureos shield, 3rd centuryBC, İstanbul Archaeology Museums
A mosaic of the Kasta Tomb in Amphipolis depicting the abduction of Persephone by Pluto, 4thcenturyBC
The Lion of Amphipolis in Amphipolis, northern Greece, a 4th-centuryBC marble tomb sculpture erected in honor of Laomedon of Mytilene, a general who served under Alexander the Great
Alexander (left), wearing a kausia and fighting an Asiatic lion with his friend Craterus (detail); late 4th-centuryBC mosaic, Pella Museum.
Portrait bust of Aristotle, an Imperial Roman (1st or 2nd centuryAD) copy of a lost bronze sculpture made by Lysippos
A fresco showing Hades and Persephone riding in a chariot, from the tomb of Queen Eurydice I of Macedon at Vergina, Greece, 4thcenturyBC
A banquet scene from a Macedonian tomb of Agios Athanasios, Thessaloniki, 4thcenturyBC; shown are six men reclining on couches, with food arranged on nearby tables, a male servant in attendance, and female musicians providing entertainment.
Ruins of the ancient theatre in Maroneia, Rhodope, East Macedonia and Thrace, Greece
Tetradrachms (above) and drachms (below) issued during the reign of Alexander the Great, now in the Numismatic Museum of Athens
The Alexander Mosaic, a Roman mosaic from Pompeii, Italy, c. 100 BC

During Alexander's subsequent campaign of conquest, he overthrew the Achaemenid Empire and conquered territory that stretched as far as the Indus River.

Alexander the Great

King of the ancient Greek kingdom of Macedon.

Alexander riding Bucephalus on a Roman mosaic
Alexander III riding Bucephalus on a Roman mosaic
Map of The Kingdom of Macedon in 336 BC, birthplace of Alexander
Roman medallion depicting Olympias, Alexander's mother
Archaeological Site of Pella, Greece, Alexander's birthplace
Philip II of Macedon, Alexander's father
Battle plan from the Battle of Chaeronea
Pausanius assassinates Philip II, Alexander's father, during his procession into the theatre
The emblema of the Stag Hunt Mosaic, c. 300 BC, from Pella; the figure on the right is possibly Alexander the Great due to the date of the mosaic along with the depicted upsweep of his centrally-parted hair (anastole); the figure on the left wielding a double-edged axe (associated with Hephaistos) is perhaps Hephaestion, one of Alexander's loyal companions.
The Macedonian phalanx at the "Battle of the Carts" against the Thracians in 335 BC
Map of Alexander's empire and his route
Gérard Audran after Charles LeBrun, 'Alexander Entering Babylon,' original print first published 1675, engraving, Department of Image Collections, National Gallery of Art Library, Washington, DC.
Alexander Cuts the Gordian Knot (1767) by Jean-Simon Berthélemy
Name of Alexander the Great in Egyptian hieroglyphs (written from right to left), c. 332 BC, Egypt. Louvre Museum.
Site of the Persian Gate in modern-day Iran; the road was built in the 1990s.
Administrative document from Bactria dated to the seventh year of Alexander's reign (324 BC), bearing the first known use of the "Alexandros" form of his name, Khalili Collection of Aramaic Documents
The Killing of Cleitus, by André Castaigne (1898–1899)
Silver tetradrachm of Alexander the Great found in Byblos (ca 330-300 bc.) (BnF 1998–859; 17,33g; Byblos, Price 3426b)
The Phalanx Attacking the Centre in the Battle of the Hydaspes by André Castaigne (1898–1899)
Alexander's invasion of the Indian subcontinent
Porus surrenders to Alexander
Asia in 323 BC, the Nanda Empire and the Gangaridai of the Indian subcontinent, in relation to Alexander's Empire and neighbours
Alexander (left) and Hephaestion (right): Both were connected by a tight friendship
Alexander at the Tomb of Cyrus the Great, by Pierre-Henri de Valenciennes (1796)
A Babylonian astronomical diary (c. 323–322 BC) recording the death of Alexander (British Museum, London)
19th-century depiction of Alexander's funeral procession, based on the description by Diodorus Siculus
Detail of Alexander on the Alexander Sarcophagus
Kingdoms of the Diadochi in 301 BC: the Ptolemaic Kingdom (dark blue), the Seleucid Empire (yellow), Kingdom of Pergamon (orange), and Kingdom of Macedon (green). Also shown are the Roman Republic (light blue), the Carthaginian Republic (purple), and the Kingdom of Epirus (red).
A coin of Alexander the Great struck by Balakros or his successor Menes, both former somatophylakes (bodyguards) of Alexander, when they held the position of satrap of Cilicia in the lifetime of Alexander, circa 333-327 BC. The obverse shows Heracles, ancestor of the Macedonian royal line and the reverse shows a seated Zeus Aëtophoros.
The Battle of the Granicus, 334 BC
The Battle of Issus, 333 BC
Alexander Cameo by Pyrgoteles
Alexander portrayal by Lysippos
Alexander (left), wearing a kausia and fighting an Asiatic lion with his friend Craterus (detail); late 4th century BC mosaic, Pella Museum
A Roman copy of an original 3rd century BC Greek bust depicting Alexander the Great, Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek, Copenhagen
A mural in Pompeii, depicting the marriage of Alexander to Barsine (Stateira) in 324 BC; the couple are apparently dressed as Ares and Aphrodite.
The Hellenistic world view: world map of Eratosthenes (276–194 BC), using information from the campaigns of Alexander and his successors
Plan of Alexandria c. 30 BC
Dedication of Alexander the Great to Athena Polias at Priene, now housed in the British Museum
Alexander's empire was the largest state of its time, covering approximately 5.2 million square km.
The Buddha, in Greco-Buddhist style, 1st to 2nd century AD, Gandhara, northern Pakistan. Tokyo National Museum.
This medallion was produced in Imperial Rome, demonstrating the influence of Alexander's memory. Walters Art Museum, Baltimore.
Alexander in a 14th-century Armenian manuscript
Alexander in a 14th-century Byzantine manuscript
Alexander conquering the air. Jean Wauquelin, Les faits et conquêtes d'Alexandre le Grand, 1448–1449
Folio from the Shahnameh showing Alexander praying at the Kaaba, mid-16th century
Detail of a 16th-century Islamic painting depicting Alexander being lowered in a glass submersible

At the age of 20, he succeeded his father, Philip II of Macedon, to the throne upon the latter's assassination at the wedding of Cleopatra of Macedon in October 336 BC. Beginning shortly after his father's death, he spent most of his ruling years conducting a lengthy military campaign throughout Western Asia and Egypt, Central Asia, and South Asia.

Darius III

The last Achaemenid King of Kings of Persia, reigning from 336 BC to his death in 330 BC.

Depiction of Darius III during the Battle of Issus in the Alexander Mosaic (c. 100 BCE), ancient Roman floor mosaic from the House of the Faun in Pompeii, Italy
Coin minted in by Cilicia by its satrap Mazaeus, portraying Artaxerxes III as pharaoh on the obverse, while a lion is depicted on the reverse
Darius III portrayed (in the middle) in battle against Alexander in a Greek depiction; Possible illustration of either Battle of Issus or Battle of Gaugamela
Darius's flight at the Battle of Gaugamela (18th-century ivory relief)
Murder of Darius and Alexander at the side of the dying king depicted in a 15th-century manuscript
The Family of Darius before Alexander, by Paolo Veronese, 1570.

This invasion, which marked the beginning of the Wars of Alexander the Great, was followed almost immediately by the victory of Alexander over the Persians at Battle of the Granicus.

Hellenistic period

The Hellenistic period spans the period of Mediterranean history between the death of Alexander the Great in 323 BC and the emergence of the Roman Empire, as signified by the Battle of Actium in 31 BC and the conquest of Ptolemaic Egypt the following year.

The Nike of Samothrace is considered one of the greatest masterpieces of Hellenistic art.
Hellenistic period. Sculpture of Dionysus from the Ancient Art Collection at Yale.
Alexander fighting the Persian king Darius III. From the Alexander Mosaic, Naples National Archaeological Museum.
Alexander's empire at the time of its maximum expansion.
The distribution of satrapies in the Macedonian Empire after the Settlement in Babylon (323 BC).
The Kingdoms of Antigonos and his rivals c. 303 BC.
The major Hellenistic kingdoms in 240 BC, including territories controlled by the Seleucid dynasty, the Ptolemaic dynasty, the Attalid dynasty, the Antigonid dynasty, and independent poleis of Hellenistic Greece
Philip V, "the darling of Hellas", wearing the royal diadem.
Greece and the Aegean World c. 200 BC.
Painting of a groom and bride from the Hellenistic Thracian Tomb of Kazanlak, near the ancient city of Seuthopolis, 4th century BC.
Gallo-Greek inscription: "Segomaros, son of Uillū, citizen (toutious) of Namausos, dedicated this sanctuary to Belesama"
A silver drachma from Massalia (modern Marseille, France), dated 375–200 BC, with the head of the goddess Artemis on the obverse and a lion on the reverse
Seleucus I Nicator founded the Seleucid Empire.
The Hellenistic world c. 200 BC.
The Dying Gaul is a Roman marble copy of a Hellenistic work of the late 3rd century BC. Capitoline Museums, Rome.
Bust of Mithridates VI sporting a lion pelt headdress, a symbol of Herakles.
Tigranes the Great's Armenian Empire
Coin of Phraates IV with Hellenistic titles such as Euergetes, Epiphanes and Philhellene (fond of Greek [culture])
A sculpted head (broken off from a larger statue) of a Parthian wearing a Hellenistic-style helmet, from the Parthian royal residence and necropolis of Nisa, Turkmenistan, 2nd century BC
Al-Khazneh in Petra shows the Hellenistic influences on the Nabatean capital city
Model of Herod's Temple (renovation of the Second Temple) in the Israel Museum
The Greco-Bactrian kingdom at its maximum extent (c. 180 BC).
Silver coin depicting Demetrius I of Bactria (reigned c. 200–180 BC), wearing an elephant scalp, symbol of his conquests of areas in the northwest of South Asia, where Afghanistan and Pakistan are today.
Indo-Greek Kingdoms in 100 BC.
Heracles as protector of Buddha, Vajrapani, 2nd-century Gandhara.
Greco-Scythian golden comb, from Solokha, early 4th century, Hermitage Museum
Statuette of Nike, Greek goddess of victory, from Vani, Georgia (country)
Carthaginian hoplite (Sacred Band, end of the 4th century BC)
Eastern hemisphere at the end of the 2nd century BC.
Perseus of Macedon surrenders to Paullus. Painting by Jean-François Pierre Peyron from 1802. Museum of Fine Arts, Budapest.
The Library of Alexandria in the Ptolemaic Kingdom, here shown in an artist's impression, was the largest and most significant library of the ancient world.
The Rosetta Stone, a trilingual Ptolemaic decree establishing the religious cult of Ptolemy V
One of the first representations of the Buddha, and an example of Greco-Buddhist art, 1st-2nd century AD, Gandhara: Standing Buddha (Tokyo National Museum).
Bull capital from Rampurva, one of the Pillars of Ashoka, Maurya Empire, 3rd century BC. Located in the Presidential Palace of Rashtrapati Bhavan, New Delhi. The subject matter is Indian (zebu), the global shape is influenced by Achaemenid styles, and the floral band incorporates Hellenistic designs (flame palmettes).
Bust of Zeus-Ammon, a deity with attributes from Greek and Egyptian gods.
Cybele, a Phrygian mother Goddess, enthroned, with lion, cornucopia and Mural crown.
Relief with Menander and New Comedy Masks (Roman, AD 40–60). The masks show three New Comedy stock characters: youth, false maiden, old man. Princeton University Art Museum
Zeno of Citium founded Stoic philosophy.
One of the oldest surviving fragments of Euclid's Elements, found at Oxyrhynchus and dated to c. AD 100 (P. Oxy. 29). The diagram accompanies Book II, Proposition 5.
The Antikythera mechanism was an ancient analog computer designed to calculate astronomical positions.
Ancient mechanical artillery: Catapults (standing), the chain drive of Polybolos (bottom center), Gastraphetes (on wall)
Head of an old woman, a good example of realism.
Sculpture of Cupid and Psyche, an example of the sensualism of Hellenistic art. 2nd-century AD Roman copy of a 2nd-century BC Greek original.

During a decade of campaigning, Alexander conquered the whole Persian Empire, overthrowing the Persian king Darius III.

Bactria

Ancient region in Central Asia.

Bactria between the Hindu Kush (south), Pamirs (east), south branch of Tianshan (north).
Ferghana Valley to the north; western Tarim Basin to the east.
Xerxes I tomb, Bactrian soldier circa 470 BCE.
Pre-Seleucid Athenian owl imitation from Bactria, possibly from the time of Sophytes.
Gold stater of the Greco-Bactrian king Eucratides
Map of the Greco-Bactrian Kingdom at its maximum extent, circa 180 BCE.
The founder of the Indo-Greek Kingdom Demetrius I (205–171 BCE), wearing the scalp of an elephant, symbol of his conquest of the Indus valley.
The treasure of the royal burial Tillia tepe is attributed to 1st century BCE Sakas in Bactria.
Zhang Qian taking leave from emperor Han Wudi, for his expedition to Central Asia from 138 to 126 BCE, Mogao Caves mural, 618–712 CE.
Kushan worshipper with Zeus/Serapis/Ohrmazd, Bactria, 3rd century CE.
Kushan worshipper with Pharro, Bactria, 3rd century CE.
Painted clay and alabaster head of a Zoroastrian priest wearing a distinctive Bactrian-style headdress, Takhti-Sangin, Tajikistan, Greco-Bactrian kingdom, 3rd-2nd century BC.

Bactria was the centre of Iranian resistance against the Macedonian invaders after the fall of the Achaemenid Empire in the 4th century BCE, but eventually fell to Alexander the Great.

Persepolis

The ceremonial capital of the Achaemenid Empire (c.

Ruins of the Gate of All Nations, Persepolis.
As is typical of Achaemenid cities, Persepolis was built on a (partially) artificial platform.
Darius the Great, by Eugène Flandin (1840)
General view of the ruins of Persepolis
Aerial architectural plan of Persepolis.
Perspolis in 1920s, photo by Harold Weston
Hemidrachm from the Kingdom of Perside.Date: c. 100AC. - 100 AD.
Bust of Alexander the Great (British Museum of London).
"The Burning of Persepolis", led by Thaïs, 1890, by Georges-Antoine Rochegrosse
Thaïs setting fire on Persepolise
A general view of Persepolis.
Ruins of the Western side of the compound at Persepolis.
Achaemenid frieze designs at Persepolis.
Reliefs of lotus flowers are frequently used on the walls and monuments at Persepolis.
Statue of a Persian Mastiff found at the Apadana, kept at the National Museum, Tehran.
Tomb of Artaxerxes II, Persepolis.
Babylonian version of an inscription of Xerxes I, the "XPc inscription".
The lithograph of Shapur II in Bishapour, which is modeled on the maps of the Persepolis donors.
Sketch of Persepolis from 1704 by Cornelis de Bruijn.
Drawing of Persepolis in 1713 by Gérard Jean-Baptiste.
Drawing of the Tachara by Charles Chipiez.
The Apadana by Charles Chipiez.
Apadana detail by Charles Chipiez.
A bas-relief at Persepolis, representing a symbol in Zoroastrianism for Nowruz.{{ref|a}}
A bas-relief from the Apadana depicting Delegations including Lydians and Armenians{{ref|page 39 image 21 in The Arts of Persia edited by R W Ferrier}} bringing their famous wine to the king.
Achaemenid plaque from Persepolis, kept at the National Museum, Tehran.
Relief of a Median man at Persepolis.
Objects from Persepolis kept at the National Museum, Tehran.
A lamassu at the Gate of All Nations.
The Great Double Staircase at Persepolis.
Bas-relief on the staircase of the palace.
Door-Post Socket
Ruins of the Apadana, Persepolis.
Depiction of united Medes and Persians at the Apadana, Persepolis.
Ruins of the Apadana's columns.
Depiction of trees and lotus flowers at the Apadana, Persepolis.
Depiction of figures at the Apadana.
Ruins of the Tachara, Persepolis.
Huma bird capital at Persepolis.
Bull capital at Persepolis.
Ruins of the Hall of the Hundred Columns, Persepolis.
Forgotten Empire Exhibition, the British Museum.
Forgotten Empire Exhibition, the British Museum.
Persepolitan rosette rock relief, kept at the Oriental Institute.
alt=Museum display case showing Achaemenid objects.|Achaemenid objects at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, including a bas relief from Persepolis.
A general view of the ruins at Persepolis.
A general view of the ruins at Persepolis.
A general view of the ruins at Persepolis.
A general view of the ruins at Persepolis.

After invading Achaemenid Persia in 330 BC, Alexander the Great sent the main force of his army to Persepolis by the Royal Road.

Sogdia

Ancient Iranian civilization between the Amu Darya and the Syr Darya, and in present-day Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan.

Approximate extent of Sogdia, between the Oxus and the Jaxartes.
Sogdian soldier circa 338 BCE, tomb of Artaxerxes III.
Sogdians on an Achaemenid Persian relief from the Apadana of Persepolis, offering tributary gifts to the Persian king Darius I, 5th century BC
Head of a Saka warrior, as a defeated enemy of the Yuezhi, from Khalchayan, northern Bactria, 1st century BCE.
A Yuezhi (left) fighting a Sogdian behind a shield (right), Noin-Ula carpet, 1st century BC/AD.
Local coinage of Samarkand, Sogdia, with the Hepthalite tamgha Hephthalite_tamgha.jpg on the reverse.
Relief of a hunter, Varahsha, Sogdia, 5th-7th century CE.
The Sogdian merchant An Jia with a Turkic Chieftain in his yurt. 579 AD.
Ambassadors from various countries (China, Korea, Iranian and Hephthalite principalities...), paying hommage to king Varkhuman and possibly Western Turk Khagan Shekui, under the massive presence of Turkic officers and courtiers. Afrasiab murals, Samarkand, 648-651 AD.
Coin of Turgar, the last Ikhshid of Sogdia. Excavated in Penjikent, 8th century CE, National Museum of Antiquities of Tajikistan.
Chinese silk in Sogdia: Tang Dynasty emissaries at the court of the Ikhshid of Sogdia Varkhuman in Samarkand, carrying silk and a string of silkworm cocoons, circa 655 CE, Afrasiab murals, Samarkand.
A lion motif on Sogdian polychrome silk, 8th century AD, most likely from Bukhara.
Sogdian Huteng dancer, Xiuding temple pagoda, Anyang, Hunan, China, Tang dynasty, 7th century.
Two Buddhist monks on a mural of the Bezeklik Thousand Buddha Caves near Turpan, Xinjiang, China, 9th century AD. Albert von Le Coq (1913) assumed the blue-eyed, red-haired monk was a Tocharian, modern scholarship however identified similar Caucasian figures of [[:File:BezeklikSogdianMerchants.jpg|the same cave temple]] (No. 9) as ethnic Sogdians, who were a minority in Turpan during the Tang Dynasty in 7th–8th century and Uyghur rule (9th–13th century).
Sogdians having a toast, with females wearing Chinese headdresses. Anyang funerary bed, 550–577 AD.
A Tang Dynasty Chinese ceramic statuette of a Sogdian merchant riding on a Bactrian camel
Details of a replication of the Ambassadors' Painting from Afrasiyab, Samarkand, showing men on a camel, 7th century AD
Sogdians in a religious procession, a 5th–6th-century tomb mural discovered at Tung-wan City.
Sogdian donors to the Buddha
A Sogdian gilded silver dish with the image of a tiger, with clear influence from Persian Sasanian art and silverwares, 7th to 8th centuries AD
Silk road figure head, probably Sogdian, Chinese Sui Dynasty (581–618), Musée Cernuschi, Paris
A minted coin of Khunak, king of Bukhara, early 8th century, showing the crowned king on the obverse, and a Zoroastrian fire altar on the reverse
Pranidhi scene, temple 9 (Cave 20) of the Bezeklik Thousand Buddha Caves, Turfan, Xinjiang, China, 9th century AD, with kneeling figures praying in front of the Buddha who Albert von Le Coq assumed were Persian people (German: "Perser"), noting their Caucasian features and green eyes, and comparing the hat of the man on the left (in the green coat) to headgear worn by Sasanian Persian princes. However, modern scholarship has identified [[:File:BezeklikSogdianMerchants.jpg|praṇidhi scenes of the same temple]] (No. 9) as depicting Sogdians, who inhabited Turfan as an ethnic minority during the phases of Tang Chinese (7th–8th century) and Uyghur rule (9th–13th century).
Central Asian foreigner worshipping Maitreya, Cave 188
The tomb of Wirkak, a Sogdian official in China. Built in Xi'an in 580 AD, during the Northern Zhou dynasty. Xi'an City Museum.
A Tang Dynasty sancai statuette of Sogdian merchants riding on a Bactrian camel, 723 AD, Xi'an.
Epitaph in Sogdian by the sons of Wirkak, a Sogdian merchant and official who died in China in 580 CE.
Sogdians, depicted on the Anyang funerary bed, a Sogdian sarcophagus in China during the Northern Qi Dynasty (550–577 AD). Guimet Museum.
Shiva (with trisula), attended by Sogdian devotees. Penjikent, 7th–8th century AD. Hermitage Museum.
Contract written in Sogdian for the purchase of a slave in 639 CE, Astana Tomb No. 135.
Sogdian musicians and attendants on the tomb of Wirkak, 580 AD.
Dragon-King Mabi saving traders, Cave 14, Kizil Caves
Two-headed dragon capturing traders, Cave 17
Sab leading the way for the 500 traders, Kizil Cave 17.

When the latter invaded the Persian Empire, Pharasmanes, an already independent king of Khwarezm, allied with the Macedonians and sent troops to Alexander in 329 BC for his war against the Scythians of the Black Sea region (even though this anticipated campaign never materialized).

Achaemenid Empire

Ancient Iranian empire that was based in Western Asia and founded by Cyrus the Great in 550 BC. It reached its greatest extent under Xerxes I, who conquered most of northern and central ancient Greece.

The Achaemenid Empire at its greatest territorial extent under the rule of Darius I (522 BC–486 BC)
Family tree of the Achaemenid rulers.
Map of the expansion process of Achaemenid territories
Cyrus the Great is said, in the Bible, to have liberated the Hebrew captives in Babylon to resettle and rebuild Jerusalem, earning him an honored place in Judaism.
The tomb of Cyrus the Great, founder of the Achaemenid Empire. At Pasargadae, Iran.
The Achaemenid Empire at its greatest extent, c. 500 BC
The Persian queen Atossa, daughter of Cyrus the Great, sister-wife of Cambyses II, Darius the Great's wife, and mother of Xerxes the Great
Map showing events of the first phases of the Greco-Persian Wars
Greek hoplite and Persian warrior depicted fighting, on an ancient kylix, 5th century BC
Achaemenid king fighting hoplites, seal and seal holder, Cimmerian Bosporus.
Achaemenid gold ornaments, Brooklyn Museum
Persian Empire timeline including important events and territorial evolution – 550–323 BC
Relief showing Darius I offering lettuces to the Egyptian deity Amun-Ra Kamutef, Temple of Hibis
The 24 countries subject to the Achaemenid Empire at the time of Darius, on the Egyptian statue of Darius I.
The Battle of Issus, between Alexander the Great on horseback to the left, and Darius III in the chariot to the right, represented in a Pompeii mosaic dated 1st century BC – Naples National Archaeological Museum
Alexander's first victory over Darius, the Persian king depicted in medieval European style in the 15th century romance The History of Alexander's Battles
Frataraka dynasty ruler Vadfradad I (Autophradates I). 3rd century BC. Istakhr (Persepolis) mint.
Dārēv I (Darios I) used for the first time the title of mlk (King). 2nd century BC.
Winged sphinx from the Palace of Darius in Susa, Louvre
Daric of Artaxerxes II
Volume of annual tribute per district, in the Achaemenid Empire, according to Herodotus.
Achaemenid tax collector, calculating on an Abax or Abacus, according to the Darius Vase (340–320 BC).
Letter from the Satrap of Bactria to the governor of Khulmi, concerning camel keepers, 353 BC
Relief of throne-bearing soldiers in their native clothing at the tomb of Xerxes I, demonstrating the satrapies under his rule.
Achaemenid king killing a Greek hoplite. c. 500 BC–475 BC, at the time of Xerxes I. Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Persian soldiers (left) fighting against Scythians. Cylinder seal impression.
Color reconstruction of Achaemenid infantry on the Alexander Sarcophagus (end of 4th century BC).
Seal of Darius the Great hunting in a chariot, reading "I am Darius, the Great King" in Old Persian (𐎠𐎭𐎶𐏐𐎭𐎠𐎼𐎹𐎺𐎢𐏁𐎴 𐏋, "adam Dārayavaʰuš xšāyaθiya"), as well as in Elamite and Babylonian. The word "great" only appears in Babylonian. British Museum.
Achaemenid calvalryman in the satrapy of Hellespontine Phrygia, Altıkulaç Sarcophagus, early 4th century BC.
Armoured cavalry: Achaemenid Dynast of Hellespontine Phrygia attacking a Greek psiloi, Altıkulaç Sarcophagus, early 4th century BC.
Reconstitution of Persian landing ships at the Battle of Marathon.
Greek ships against Achaemenid ships at the Battle of Salamis.
Iconic relief of lion and bull fighting, Apadana of Persepolis
Achaemenid golden bowl with lioness imagery of Mazandaran
The ruins of Persepolis
A section of the Old Persian part of the trilingual Behistun inscription. Other versions are in Babylonian and Elamite.
A copy of the Behistun inscription in Aramaic on a papyrus. Aramaic was the lingua franca of the empire.
An Achaemenid drinking vessel
Bas-relief of Farvahar at Persepolis
Tomb of Artaxerxes III in Persepolis
The Mausoleum at Halicarnassus, one of the Seven wonders of the ancient world, was built by Greek architects for the local Persian satrap of Caria, Mausolus (Scale model)
Achamenid dynasty timeline
Reconstruction of the Palace of Darius at Susa. The palace served as a model for Persepolis.
Lion on a decorative panel from Darius I the Great's palace, Louvre
Ruins of Throne Hall, Persepolis
Apadana Hall, Persian and Median soldiers at Persepolis
Lateral view of tomb of Cambyses II, Pasargadae, Iran
Plaque with horned lion-griffins. The Metropolitan Museum of Art

In 334 BC, when Darius was just succeeding in subduing Egypt again, Alexander and his battle-hardened troops invaded Asia Minor.

Siege of Tyre (332 BC)

The siege of Tyre
Tyre view from an airplane, 1934

The siege of Tyre was orchestrated by Alexander the Great in 332 BC during his campaigns against the Persians.