General Articles » The Conquerors
Their Cause Was Too Small
Hannibal -- son of Hamilcar Barca, commonly known as Hannibal (meaning "Ba’al has given me grace"); 248–183 or 182 BC was a Carthaginian military commander and tactician who is credited as one of the most talented commanders in history. One of his most famous achievements was at the outbreak of the second Punic War, when he marched an army, which included war elephants, from Iberia over the Pyrenees and the Alps into Northern Italy. In his first few years in Italy, he won three dramatic victories Trebia, Trasimine and Cannae and won over several Roman allies.
However, after 17 years, a Roman counter-invasion of North Africa forced him to return to Carthage, where he was decisively defeated by Scipio Africanus at the Battle of Zama. After an extensive military and political career he took poison, rather than fall into an enemy’s hands and died.
Alexander the Great – (356-323 BC) Ancient Greek king of Macedon was one of the most successful military commanders of all time and is presumed undefeated in battle. Proclaimed king at the age of 20, and had all rivals to his throne murdered. By the time of his death he had conquered most of the then known civilized world. On the afternoon of June 11, 323 BC, Alexander died in the palace of Nebuchednezzar 11 of Babylon one month short of 33 years of age. Varied stories attribute his death to either poisoning, sickness following a drinking party or malaria he contracted in 336 BC. His empire was divided after his death and his desire to conquer the world failed.
Gaius Julius Caesar – (July 100 BC to March 44 BC) – Roman military and political leader who played a critical role in the transformation of the Roman Republic into the Roman Empire. Began a civil war in 49 BC from which he became the master of the Roman world. Historians place the generalship of Caesar as one of the greatest military strategists and tacticians who ever lived. In the year 44 BC a group of senators planned and carried out his assassination by stabbing him to death.
Ghengis Khan – (1162-1227) – born Temujin – Founder and emporer of the Mongol Empire which was the largest contiguous empire in history. He came to power by uniting many of the nomadic tribes of Northeast Asia. During his life the Mongol empire occupied a substantial portion of Central Asia. Before his death he split his empire among his sons, and they continued to extend the empire across most of Eurasia. While Genghis Khan was a pagan, he consulted with people of other religions including Christians, Muslims, Taoists and others. He died in 1227 – some say he fell off his horse and his war injuries killed him, others say he died of pneumonia, and others that he was killed in battle.
Napoleon Bonaparte – (August 1769 – May 1821) - later known as Emperor Napoleon I, was a military and political leader of France whose actions shaped European politics in the early 19th century. He turned the armies of the French empire against every major European power and dominated continental Europe through a series of military victories. He was defeated and banished to Elba in 1813, returned to power less than a year later, and was defeated at the Battle of Waterloo in 1815 living out the remaining years of his life under British supervision. An autopsy stated that died of stomach cancer or a stomach ulcer, although some believe he was poisoned with arsenic.
Attila (406–453) -- also known as Attila the Hun, was Emperor of the of the Huns from 434 until his death in 453. He was one of the most fearsome of the enemies of the Roman Empire. In much of Western Europe he is remembered as the epitome of cruelty, while in contrast some histories describe him as a great and noble king. The barbarian nation of the Huns, which was in Thrace, became so great that more than a hundred cities were captured and Constantinople almost came into danger and most men fled from it. And there were so many murders and
blood-lettings that the dead could not be numbered. After his warlike and cruel life he died, as conventional accounts say that he was at a party celebrating another marriage and suffered a severe nosebleed and choked to death. Another account says that he was killed by the hand and blade of his wife. After his death his empire was divided and defeated.
C R Lord © 2012
His Cause Was Just And Spans Centuries
ONE SOLITARY LIFE
Jesus Christ ( 4 BC-30 AD) -- He was born in an obscure village the child of a peasant woman. He grew up in another obscure village where he worked in a carpenter shop until he
was thirty when public opinion turned against him.
He never wrote a book. He never held an office. He never went to college. He never visited a
big city. He never traveled more than two hundred miles from the place where he was born.
He did none of the things usually associated with greatness. He had no credentials but
himself. He was only thirty three years of age.
His friends ran away. One of them denied him. He was turned over to his enemies,
and went through the mockery of a trial. He was nailed to a cross between two thieves.
While dying, his executioners gambled for his clothing; the only property he had on earth.
When he was dead He was laid in a borrowed grave through the pity of a friend.
Nineteen centuries have come and gone, and today Jesus is the central figure of
the human race and the leader of mankind's progress.
All the armies that have ever marched, all the navies that have ever sailed, all
the parliaments that have ever sat, all the kings that ever reigned put together have
not affected the life of mankind on earth as powerfully as that one solitary life
Dr James Allan Francis © 1926