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Alexander The Great And The Balkans

The decline of the state of the Odryssae during the late 4th century B.C. brought to the fore a new political power in the Balkans ? the Macedonian Kingdom, headed by Philip II of Macedon (382-336 B.C.). Philip succeeded in conquering most of the Thracian lands. After his death, he was succeeded on the throne by his son Alexander, known in history as Alexander the Great. As a result of his campaigns in Asia, the Macedonian state became a world empire. A disciple of Aristotle, Alexander strove to enforce the domination of the Hellenic culture. An example of its influence on Thracian art and culture in the Balkans are the Kazanluk tomb, the tomb from the village of Sveshtari (northwest of the present town of Isperih), the magnificent gold table set of the so-called Panagyurishte treasure.

The death of Alexander the Great in 323 B.C. divided the huge empire. Lysimachus, the warrior, inherited power in Thrace. Repeated revolts broke out among the Thracians against foreign domination, a scene of which was depicted in the Kazanluk tomb.

During the second half of the 3rd century B.C., Celts also appeared in the Thracian lands. They even founded their kingdom with Tile as its capital. However, their presence was comparatively short-lived. The Republic of Rome set its eyes ever more insistently on the present-day Bulgarian lands.

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