Alexander the Great versus ET

  • #1
Ivan Seeking
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Perhaps someone can help to determine the truth or fiction of a claim that [as reported], while crossing a river in 329 B.C., Alexander the Great encountered "silver shields" that swooped down and attacked his troops. It is further claimed that seven years later the shields appeared again and "fired a beam of light" that destroyed part of a wall at the city of Tyre.

These two claims are often made, and in the latter case, the claim is that these events were recorded by observers on both sides of the battle. In the past I have often found that be they true or not, accounts such as these are a part of the historical record. Examples range from the biblical and heretical writings to ships logs, and from military reports to personal accounts like those in the diary of the explorer, Nicholas Roerich. [See the UFO Napster above] However, in this case I can find no reliable source for the claim. If it is true that this was reportedly observed, it would certainly be a striking footnote in history.

The claim can be heard here starting at the 5:25 mark.
http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-166600271442873025 [Broken]
 
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  • #2
Ivan Seeking
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One thing that caused confusion was the date: Alexander attacked Tyre three years earlier - 332 B.C. - not seven years later - 322 B.C.

Several sources describe battering rams being used against the wall, but the descriptions do vary.

By now the repeated battering of the rams had loosened the joints in the stones and the defensive walls had fallen; the fleet had entered the port; and some Macedonians had made their way on to the towers the enemy had abandoned
http://www.livius.org/aj-al/alexander/alexander_t09.html

Macedonian ships attacked the walls with siege engines; and marines from Cyprus landed in the 'Sidonian port' and forced their way into the city.
http://www.livius.org/aj-al/alexander/alexander07.html

Maybe there is a nice collection of first-hand accounts somewhere, and there may be many accounts of such a large battle, but I have reviewed a number of sources and can't find any references to the "shields" allegedly observed.

There is another interesting twist on this story: The fall of Tyre was foretold by the prophet Ezekiel. Apparently there are many references to divine intervention regarding the destruction of Tyre.

True to Ezekiel's prophecy, the mainland city of Tyre has never been rebuilt (Ezek. 26:14).

The inhabitants of Tyre did not believe the prophets of God as they spoke of the cities doom. Historian Charles Rollin observed: "To prove, in a sensible manner, to Tyre, that the prophecy concerning her ruin was not incredible, and that all the strength and wisdom of man could not ward off or suspend the punishment which God has prepared for the pride and the abuse of riches, Isaiah set before her the example of Babylon, whose destruction ought to have been an example to her.
http://www.padfield.com/1994/tyre.html

Ezekiel 26
http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?book_id=33&chapter=26&version=31

Ezekiel is famous in ufology and theology for the story of "Ezekiel's wheels" [Ezekiel 1], which is taken by many ET believers as an encounter with ETs.

So in one sense this is a bit striking given the original claim, but it is possible that the story in the OP somehow evolved as a myth, due to the prophesies. That is, in order to fulfill the scriptures, a divine intervention story was created by someone along the line who wished to further a Christian agenda. That myth may have even continued to evolve until we have flying saucers with LASER beams. Or, as I can't rule this out yet, the information on The History Channel may have been completely bogus. Usually I find some basis for a claim like this. A reading of the original reference to this event should rule out many possibilities here, if I could only find one....
 
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  • #3
Evo
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I remember reading an eyewitness report from someone in the enemy camp that described what sounded like single occupant aircraft. I'll see if I can find it again. It's a famous incident.

Another version I read was about another army coming to Alexander's defence carrying silver shields and swooping down on the enemy, but on land.
 
  • #4
Evo
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This reminded me about the medeival report of UFO's fighting. It was in Nuremberg, Germany in 1561. Here's a reference to it and several other reports.

History

Main article: List of major UFO sightings

Unusual aerial phenomena have been reported throughout history. Some of these strange apparitions may have been astronomical phenomena such as comets or bright meteors, or atmospheric optical phenomena such as parhelia and the rare, yet understood, lenticular clouds. Examples of these reports include:

During the reign of Pharaoh Thutmose III around 1450 BC, there is a description of multiple “circles of fire” brighter than the Sun and about 5 metres in size that appeared over multiple days.[1] They finally disappeared after ascending higher in the sky.

The Roman author Julius Obsequens writes that in 99 BC, “in Tarquinia towards sunset, a round object, like a globe, a round or circular shield, took its path in the sky from west to east.”

On September 24, 1235, General Yoritsume and his army observed unidentified globes of light flying in erratic patterns in the night sky near Kyoto, Japan. The general’s advisers told him not to worry — it was merely the wind causing the stars to sway.[2][3]

1566 woodcut by Hans Glaser of 1561 Nuremberg event. On April 14, 1561 the skies over Nuremberg, Germany were reportedly filled with a multitude of objects seemingly engaged in an aerial battle. Small spheres and discs were said to emerge from large cylinders.[4][5] (image right)

These sightings were usually treated as supernatural portents, angels, and other religious omens. Some contemporary investigators believe them to be the ancient equivalent of modern UFO reports.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unidentified_flying_object

The Nuremberg event - Mass hysteria? Ergot poisoning? Aerial phenomena?
 
  • #5
Ivan Seeking
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This corner of the UFO world is both fascinating and disturbing to me. It was no small challenge to get past my Catholicism enough to give the idea due consideration [esp wrt the biblical accounts].

Note that the video linked in the first post is dedicated to this topic.

The Mahabharata and Ramayana are also rich sources of this material.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mahabharata
 
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  • #6
Ivan Seeking
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Re Alexander, I did find one popular media source that cites Alexander's historian as the original source for this claim, but they offered no reference. Either it was his “personal historian” who allegedly documented this, or I took it to mean as much. Others sources do cite at least one, maybe two different books as a sub-source, so I need to track those down yet. Many of the scholarly works that might be used require a subscription, and the information found online thus far doesn’t include much detail about this aspect of the battle. What is mentioned includes nothing about aerial phenomena of any sort.
 
  • #7
Ivan Seeking
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Okay, this is all coming together now. Callisthenes was his historian.

Callisthenes (Gk. Kallisthenês), son of Damotimos, c.360-c.353 BC, a Greek from Olynthos, was a kinsman of Aristotle, probably his great-nephew (P 52.1, 55.4). He was a well-known historian in his own right: before he joined Alexander as the historian of the campaign against Persia he had already written historical works, including a history of Persia, and another on the Third Sacred War (for example Athenaeus, Deipnosophists, 13.560b–d; Plutarch, Moralia, 292E-293, 307D) and at some point he had worked with Aristotle on a list of the victors in the Pythian Games (SIG 274). Strabo (13.?) ascribes to Callisthenes and Anaxarchus Alexander's cherished "casket copy" of Homer's Iliad.

We do not know whether it was Philip or Alexander who initially engaged Callisthenes to record the war against Persia, but it appears that he was introduced to Alexander by Aristotle (Valerius Maximus, 7.2.ext.11a). In 334 BC he crossed the Hellespont with Alexander’s army. Similarly we don’t know the full extent of his employment although it is clear that, as well as writing a history of the expedition he was at some point put in charge of educating the Royal Pages—as Aristotle had educated Alexander and his peers (P 55.2; A 4.13.2; C 8.6.24f, 8.7.3, 8.8.1) . During the army’s time in Egypt Callisthenes went on a trip to locate the source of the Nile, and when they reached Babylon he supervised the translation of the Babylonian astronomical records; so his remit was clearly much wider than just writing a journal of the expedition.

Callisthenes is best known for writing a history of the expedition which was laden with flattery of Alexander, and he appears to have played a large part in the elevation of Alexander as son of Zeus following the visit to Siwa in Egypt. The history is lost, surviving only in a few fragments cited by later authors (for example: P 27.3, 33.1; Strabo, 17.I.43).

Callisthenes’ history was probably written in instalments that were sent back to Greece to be disseminated to the states of the League of Corinth. We are not sure exactly where his work ended: it is generally assumed that the battle of Gaugamela was the last major event recorded, but his record might have gone up to the death of Bessus in 329 BC [continued]
http://www.ancientlibrary.com/wcd/Callisthenes

...Apart from the cuneiform evidence from Babylonia that is now being disclosed, the Greek and Latin sources for Alexander's life are, from the perspective of ancient history, relatively numerous. Alexander himself left only a few inscriptions and some letter-fragments of dubious authenticity, but a large number of his contemporaries wrote full accounts. The key contemporary historians are considered Callisthenes, his general Ptolemy, Aristobulus, Nearchus and Onesicritus. Another influential account was penned by Cleitarchus, who, while not a direct witness of Alexander's expedition, used the sources which had just been published. His work was to be the backbone of that of Timagenes, who heavily influenced many surviving historians. Unfortunately, all these works were lost. Instead, the modern historian must rely on authors who used these and other early sources.

The five main accounts are by Arrian, Curtius, Plutarch, Diodorus, and Justin. [continued]
http://www.the-dispatch.com/apps/pb...y=NEWS&template=wiki&text=Alexander_the_Great

As it turns out, there are many legends about Alexander; due in part to the belief in his divinity.

... Concerned about his glory and his relationship with the gods, Alexander and a small party with camels crossed the Egyptian desert to an oasis and holy place called Siwah. There a sun god called Amon-Ra, the father of the pharaohs, was believed to dwell. It was common among Greeks to see their own gods in foreign deities, and for some time Greeks and Macedonians had visualized Amon-Ra as another manifestation of Zeus. Alexander and his party traveled in the coolness of twilight and night, and their journey became biblical in its telling. They endured a sandstorm. They crossed an area infested with snakes and became lost, and their water supply was just about finished. Alexander's historian, Callisthenes, was to claim that they were rescued by gods: two crows that flew in front of them to show them the way. According to another account they were led by gods in the form of two talking snakes.

...By his conquests, Alexander had changed the world. But what had not changed was the inclination to create myth. Even while Alexander lived, his court historian, Callisthenes, had written of an incident in which the sea had retreated from before Alexander's path
http://www.fsmitha.com/h1/ch11.htm

It was also a mariner's myth that his sister was a mermaid, so this all gets pretty dicey.

[emphasis added]
 
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  • #8
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The video you posted is no longer available.
 
  • #9
Ivan Seeking
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The video you posted is no longer available.
Crud, some of these are offered on a promotional basis and I guess others are posted in violation of copyright laws. There are a number of videos along with this one linked in post #50 of the UFO Napster. Most still work.
 
  • #10
Okay, this is all coming together now. Callisthenes was his historian.


http://www.ancientlibrary.com/wcd/Callisthenes


http://www.the-dispatch.com/apps/pb...y=NEWS&template=wiki&text=Alexander_the_Great

As it turns out, there are many legends about Alexander; due in part to the belief in his divinity.


http://www.fsmitha.com/h1/ch11.htm

It was also a mariner's myth that his sister was a mermaid, so this all gets pretty dicey.

[emphasis added]
Thing is none of thier histories survived, we only have them being used as sources by People writer latter, typicaly 4 main SOurces are used for Alexander, Plutarch, Arrian, Diodorus, and some Roman Historian.

Back to the Biblical Significance, Here's another Prpheyc about Tyre oftne overlooked.

Amos 1:10 But I will send a fire on the wall of Tyrus
 

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