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Alexander's Tomb: The Two-Thousand Year…
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Alexander's Tomb: The Two-Thousand Year Obsession to Find the Lost… (edition 2006)

by Nicholas J. Saunders

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801150,606 (3.34)1
Member:jcovington
Title:Alexander's Tomb: The Two-Thousand Year Obsession to Find the Lost Conquerer
Authors:Nicholas J. Saunders
Info:Basic Books (2006), Edition: First Edition, Hardcover, 320 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
Tags:History - Ancient

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Alexander's Tomb: The Two-Thousand Year Obsession to Find the Lost Conquerer by Nicholas J. Saunders

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I am mostly disappointed with this book, due to the author's fabrications, and the use of less than reliable sources. He also at the end announces that he isn't really interested in the actual tomb, and hopes it and the body will never be found. Hello, and thank you for getting me to waste my time and money on what I consider a craven point of view.

While it is true that there are not a lot of sources, reliable or not, the book was presented too much as a factual study, when it was no more than biased conjecture. I say biased, because everyone is, Saunders seems to have no ax to grind, but I am quite sure he cherry-picked what to use and what to ignore. He seems to rely much too heavily on the Alexander Romances, which most scholars discredit.

When even the iffy sources fall silent about Alex and his tomb, Saunders makes things up. There is a fine line between interpretation and manufacturing whole-cloth. While conjecture is interesting, it doesn't work when there isn't anything solid to connect it to.

Some of the better chapters are those that cover the excavations and interpretations of others, and the look at Alex in the modern world regarding Macedonia, Greece, and the old Yugoslavian province which wants to be formally known as Macedonia. He also looks at how various countries, cultures, and religions have adopted Alex and used his glory to boost their own.

I almost think he wanted to write a factual book about excavations and then found there wasn't enough material and switched to the mythic look at Alex and his impact on those who have come since him.

I really thought the book needed much better maps, since so much of his rambling is about the position of the walls, the palace district and the tomb in Alexandria. I would also have liked to see some pictures of Philip II's tomb in Vergina, especially since some tried to claim it was really Alex and not Philip who was buried there. Same with the Venice installation. ( )
  FicusFan | Jul 6, 2007 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 046507202X, Hardcover)

Alexander the Great is a towering figure in world history, but despite our long-held fascination with him, his burial site is unknown. Alexander’s Tomb is the epic tale of the ongoing quest to unlock one of the world’s great mysteries.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:49:39 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Combining cinematic drama and a sprawling historical narrative, this gripping history documents the search for the tomb of Alexander the Great.

(summary from another edition)

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