This is not one I had heard before

So Alexander died in 323 without a capable heir, and according to some sources he spoke one word to Perdikkas on his deathbed. In one account that word was “kratisto” (since I don’t know how to get scripts in here, all Greek words are latinized) which means “the strongest”, which implies that the people were going to slug it out. According to another account that word was krat’eroi (stronger), which has the same net effect as kratisto. What I find so interesting here (and this I got from the wikipedia article on Alexander) is that krat’eroi is an accent mark away from krater’oi, which is the dative form of Krateros, so the simplest meaning from it would be “to/for Krateros”.

Perdikkas understandably would have changed the word since he had no interest in Krateros succeeding, but it puts Alexander’s relationship with people and the position of officers into a whole new light. I find this fascinating, though I have not gone back to the sources to make sure that the wikipedia author is right on that account. The Greek is right though, and the statement is far from implausible.

2 thoughts on “This is not one I had heard before

  1. Oh my. There’s a speculative historical fiction there waiting to be written… a world where Alexander’s legacy doesn’t fall apart, or at least, not so quickly.

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  2. I’ve also heard ‘to the strongest’ vs ‘Krateros’…… didn’t read it Wikipedia though and I’m pretty sure it’s mentioned in more than once source.

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