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Writing his Histories of Alexander the Great around the first century A. Alexander called an assembly of the Macedon army to judge him.

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After hearing all the arguments, the army considered the evidence: They found Philotas guilty of treason and sentenced him to death for his treachery. Hephaestion took the floor and proposed that they torture the condemned before executing him, in order to find out who else was involved.


Hephaestion, Craterus, and others tortured Philotas all night, until his will was broken. They forced him, again under torture, to give details of the alleged plot and all those involved. The following day the former commander of the Companion cavalry was stoned to death.

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Paranoia, intrigue, and ambition had won the day. From that moment, there were no more trials. The ranks of the army were simply purged, leaving no one with any doubt that perceived disloyalty would be punished. Alexander knew that promotions could shore up his power.

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Alexander, perhaps paranoid, believed that there was no way Philotas could have plotted against him without the knowledge of his father, Parmenio. He also knew that Parmenio could act against him to avenge the death of his son. Despite a long life of trusted service to Alexander and his father before him, the old general Parmenio was now seen as a threat. Although Parmenio had always been an influential figure, tensions had been growing.

Some historians have even suggested that the plot against Philotas was cooked up as an excuse to remove his father from power. Parmenio was based in Ecbatana, a former summer residence of the Persian kings. Sources report that before his murder he knew nothing of the terrible fate that had befallen his son. Parmenio was murdered by a courier sent by Alexander.

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Sources report that the courier handed a series of letters to Parmenio and then quickly killed him, an act carried out for political expediency alone. Before setting out from Phrada to launch a new campaign, Alexander renamed the city Alexandria Prophthasia Anticipation. The deaths of two of his most trusted advisers did not soothe Alexander, whose character continued to degrade in the coming years. For example, a Greek banquet represented the apogee of civilized society—a time for celebration, and discussion of philosophy and reason.

The most notorious banquet took place in Maracanda Samarqand in B.

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Alexander, then about age 28 and determined to reach India, was leading his reluctant army into harsh terrain in the east. That night, the great commander was drunk. Afterward, he was said to have felt great remorse: First-century A. Alexander had adopted the Persian custom of proskynesis —prostration before the king—but Callisthenes, as a Greek, would not practice it. Alexander allowed this, but historians believe that the defiance was noted. News of the plot surfaced, and one account seemed to seal the fate of Callisthenes. The pages were executed. They mutinied, he was forced to retreat west, and his reign would never recover.

Three years later, Alexander died of fever in Babylon at age Read Caption. How suspicion and intrigue eroded Alexander's empire Plots of murder, both real and imagined, consumed Alexander the Great's thoughts, turning him against former comrades in arms. Alexander's eight-year campaign from Anatolia to the edge of India not only toppled the mighty Persian Empire but also founded numerous, lasting cities in his name.

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