Book Review: The Marshals of Alexander's Empire


by Waldemar Heckel

London / New York: Routledge, 2012. Pp. xxvi, 416. Maps, appends., notes, biblio. $49.95 paper. ISBN: 0415642736

A Handbook to Alexander’s Commanders and Staff Officers.

The first paperback edition of a classic work originally published in 1992, The Marshals of Alexander’s Empire is essentially a biographical guide to what might be termed Alexander the Great’s senior commanders and his staff officers, his generals, companions, and court officials.  Prof. Heckel (Calgary), author of several notable books on Alexander and his empire, covers some 135 men.  Naturally, since sources vary greatly, coverage also varies greatly.  So a Parmenion or a Nearchos or a Ptolemy receives far more attention than most of the men covered.  Despite this limitation, we get as much information as is available on each person.  And in the process, Heckel gives us a good idea of what might be termed the recruitment and training of senior personnel, their “career paths”, the politics of command (why some of these men came to bad ends), and family ties among senior personnel.  He also gives us an overview of the organization and administration of the Macedonian army and that of Alexander’s empire. 

This makes The Marshals of Alexander’s Empire a valuable references  for anyone with an interest in Alexander or the “Successors.”

Note: The Marshals of Alexander’s Empire is also still available from the publisher in the original hardback edition for $150.00, ISBN 978-0-415-05053-1


Reviewer: A. A. Nofi, Review Editor   

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