Siege of Alexandria, August 48-January 47 BC

Siege of Alexandria, August 48-January 47 BC

Siege of Alexandria, August 48-January 47 BC

The siege of Alexandria (August 48 BC-January/ February 47 BC) saw Julius Caesar become trapped in the city after getting involved in Egyptian politics. He was only able to escape after a relief army reached the city, allowing him to defeat Ptolemy XIII and his allies at the battle of the Nile (Great Roman Civil War).

In the aftermath of his defeat at the battle of Pharsalus, Pompey the Great, the defeated Republican commander, attempted to find a safe refuge somewhere in the east. Greece and the surrounding areas soon became too dangerous, especially after Caesar decided to put all of his efforts into catching Pompey. The people of Antioch made it clear that Pompey wouldn’t be welcome there. Pompey then decided to go to Egypt, where he hoped to gain support from the young Ptolemy XIII. Pompey had supported Ptolemy’s father Ptolemy XII Auletes, and many members of the king’s army had previously served under Pompey. Ptolemy was also engaged in a civil war with his sister Cleopatra VII Philopater. However some of the young king’s advisors worried that Pompey would be able to subvert their army, and had him assassinated when he landed on the shore near Pelusium.

Caesar arrived at Alexandria a few days after Pompey’s death. He was accompanied by 3,200 men from two under-strength legions, 800 cavalry, ten warships from Rhodes and a few others from Asia, but he was confident that his fearsome reputation would keep him safe. This would soon prove to have been a dangerous gamble. He learnt of Pompey’s death soon after arriving in Egypt, and according to Plutarch shed tears when he was presented with Pompey’s seal ring and recoiled in horror when he was shown his head. Pompey might have been his enemy, but he was also a senior Roman, and his death at Egyptian hands an unacceptable blow.

We have a number of sources for the events in Egypt. For the period between Ceasar’s arrival at Alexandria and the outbreak of fighting we might have Caesar’s own words, in the last section of his Civil War. This breaks off early in the siege, and is replaced by the Alexandrian Wars, presented as a continuation of the Civil War, but probably not written by Caesar. The Alexandrian Wars may have been written by Caesar’s friend and ally Aulus Hirtius. Plutarch’s life of Caesar includes some details, and there is a brief summary in Appian.

According to Caesar’s Civil War, when he arrived at Alexandria the city was in turmoil. He found himself trapped there by the etesian winds, blowing strongly from the north, and so decided to summon other legions to come to his aid in Egypt, but it would take some time for them to arrive. He decided that the dispute between Ptolemy and Cleopatra was of direct concern to the Roman people, while he was directly involved because an alliance had been formed between Ptolemy XII and Rome during Caesar’s first spell as consul. As a result he ordered Ptolemy and Cleopatra to disband their armies and settle their dispute legally, with Caesar as the judge. In the meantime Caesar moved into the Royal palace.

Ptolemy’s government was run by the eunuch Pothinus, who had played a major role in the death of Pompey. He now began to plot against Caesar. Caesar and Plutarch have slightly different versions of these events.

According to Plutarch Pothinus goaded Caesar with fairly petty acts - providing poor grain for his troops or using wooden and earthenware dishes at meals, and suggesting that he should leave Egypt and return to his own affairs. Caesar rebuffed him, and decided to summon Cleopatra to the palace. In order to get past Ptolemy’s guides, she had to be hidden in a carpet or a bed sack and carried into the palace, a daring move that helped win Caesar to her side. Caesar forced the two to make a public reconciliation, but at this point one of his servants uncovered a plot involving Pothinus and Achillas, one of Pompey’s assassins. Caesar captured and executed Pothinus, but Achillas escaped and brought the Royal army to Alexandria to attack Caesar.

In Caesar’s account, Pothinus summoned the Royal army from Pelusium, and placed Achillas in command. When the Royal army approached the city, Caesar got Ptolemy to send envoys to find out what Achillas intended, but they were attacked and one was killed when they entered the camp. Caesar took possession of Ptolemy, and decided to defend part of the city. Achillas had around 20,000 men, including a number of former Roman soldiers who had served under Gabinius, and then entered Egyptian service. Caesar was thus badly outnumbered.

The siege began with a general assault by Achillas. Part of his army was sent to attack Caesar’s residence while a larger part was sent to try and seize the port area, and in particular the 72 warships that were present there. Caesar realised that he couldn’t hope to protect the entire harbour area with his small forces, and so had the ships burnt. He was also able to fight off the attack on his residence, and send a force to occupy Pharos island, dominated by the famous light house. Possession of Pharos meant that Caesar controlled access to the harbour, but later events show that he wasn't able to hold onto it at this time.

Caesar began to fortify his part of the city. His area was centred on part of the palace and a nearby theatre, which he turned into a citadel. He had access to the port, and was given the time to fortify the area. He lost control of Cleopatra’s sister Arsinoe, who escaped from the palace and joined Achillas, but then attempted to seize control of his army, dividing Caesar’s opponents. This is the point at which Caesar reports the death of Pothinus, executed after it was discovered that he was sending messengers to Achillas. This is the point at which Caesar’s work ends, and we move onto the Alexandrian Wars.

Both sides concentrated on fortifying their part of the city. Caesar occupied the smaller part of the city, bordered to the south by a morass that provided him with water and forage. The Alexandrians built a forty foot high triple wall to defend their part of the city, dotting it with ten story towers and building a number of mobile towers that could be moved to any danger zone.

The division in the Alexandrian army soon came to an end, after Arsinoe had Achillas killed. She then placed her governor Ganymed in command of the army. His first plan was to try and cut off the supply of fresh water to the Roman held area, first by cutting the canals that brought fresh water into the city’s cisterns, and then by pumping sea water into the canals in Caesar’s area. The drinking water available to the Romans gradually turned brackish. This caused a brief crisis of morale in Caesar’s forces, but he was able to reassure them, and they were soon able to dig wells that produced enough fresh water.

Soon after this the first Roman reinforcements arrived in the area. This was the 37th Legion, formed by Caesar using some of Pompey’s veterans. An easterly wind stopped the legion from entering the city, but they were able to ride at anchor just off the coast near the city, and sent messages into the city to let Caesar know they had arrived.

Caesar decided to take his small fleet out to sea to meet with his reinforcements, but he decided not to embark any soldiers onboard, as he didn’t want to weaken the defences of his enclave. This almost led to disaster. Caesar’s fleet reached Chersonesus, and sent some of his sailors inland to fetch water. Some of them went too far and were captured by the Alexandrians, who thus discovered that Caesar was actually present with the fleet, and had no soldiers with him. They decided to try and intercept Caesar on his way back to the city. Caesar decided not to risk a battle, and instead headed towards the shore, but one of his Rhodian galleys became isolated on his right wing, and was attacked by a series of four decked warships. Caesar had to come to its assistance, and came close to winning a major naval victory before night ended the fighting. Even so his men captured one four banked galley, sank a second and disabled a third. He was then able to tow the stranded transport ships into Alexandria.

The Alexandrians then decided to equip a new fleet. They gathered in all of the ships stationed at the mouths of the Nile to collect customs, and the older warships in the king’s arsenals. They were able to find 22 quadriremes and 5 quinqueremes, along with a large number of smaller ships. They then prepared for a second naval battle.

Caesar now had nine Rhodian galleys, eight from Pontus, five from Lycia and twelve from Asia, including ten quadriremes and five quinqueremes. He thus had 34 major warships compared to 27 on the Alexandrian side, but on average his ships were smaller.

The two fleets formed up on opposite sides of an area of shallow water towards the western side of the city (off the part of the city said to be in the African coast). Caesar placed his Rhodians galleys, under Euphranor, on his right and his Pontian galleys on his left. He left a gap between the two wings, and posted the rest of his ships in the rear as a reserve. The Alexandrians placed their 22 quadriremes in the front row with the rest of their fleet in the rear. Both sides then waited for the other to make the first move, with neither wanting to fight with the shallows behind them.

Eventually Euphranor volunteered to lead his ships through the shallows, and hold off the Alexandrians while the rest of the fleet got through. The battle began after the first four Rhodian ships were through. The Alexandrians were unable to close with them, and the rest of the fleet soon came to their aid. The battle then turned into a naval melee, which ended as a minor Roman victory. One quinquereme and one bireme were captured and three biremes sunk before the rest of the Alexandrian fleet took shelter under the mole (presumably the mole leading to the lighthouse)

Caesar’s next plan was to seize the Pharos island, and thus gain control of the harbour. He chose ten cohorts, supported by light infantry and the best of the Gallic cavalry, and led them across to the island on small boats, while his fleet caused a distraction by attacking the island elsewhere. At first the defenders of the island held the Romans at the shore, but they were soon forced to retreat into the town on Pharos Island. Caesar was able to take one of the two castles on the island, but his attempt to take the second castle failed after the Alexandrians attacked the mole and the Roman positions on the bridge that connected the island to the mainland. Eventually Caesar’s men were overwhelmed and began to retreat. Caesar was forced to move back to his galley, but this was sunk by the weight of fleeing troops who attempted to escape on her. Caesar himself was forced to swim to safety. The Alexandrians then took secure possession of the Pharos island, and gained control of the harbour.

After this setback the Alexandrians asked Caesar to allow Ptolemy to join the Egyptian army, so he could overthrow Arsinoe and Ganymed, and form an alliance with Caesar. Caesar didn’t hold out much hope that Ptolemy would keep his word, but decided to risk releasing him anyway. Much as Caesar had expected, Ptolemy soon took control of the war against him.

By now the Alexandrians were becoming demoralised. Their young king wasn’t an inspiring leader, and news had reached them that Roman reinforcements were on their way from Syria. The Alexandrians decided to try and intercept the supply convoys that were still reaching Caesar, and dispatched their fleet to guard the Canopic mouth of the Nile. Caesar sent his own fleet, under Tiberius Nero, to try and prevent this. A small battle developed at Canopus, in which Caesar’s successful Rhodian admiral Euphranor was killed.

By now the relief army was closing in. This force was led by Mithridates of Pergamum, a loyal ally of Caesar, and was made up of troops from Syria and Cilicia. Achillas had attempted to block them at Pelusium before his fall, but Mithridates seized that fortress in a single day and marched across Egypt. Ptolemy attempted to intercept him before he could reach Caesar, but his first attacks failed. He then left Alexandria to take command of the next attack in person, while Caesar rushed to aid his ally. The resulting battle of the Nile ended as a clear Roman victory.

Ptolemy was drowned while attempting to escape from the scene, leaving Caesar in undisputed control of Egypt. He placed Cleopatra on the throne, alongside her younger brother Ptolemy XIV. Caesar then spent some time in Egypt, enjoying the company of Cleopatra, and possibly taking part in a cruise up the Nile. Soon after Caesar’s departure, Cleopatra gave birth to a son, who she named Caesarion, making it clear just who she believed his father to be.

Caesar’s Egyptian interlude was almost disastrous for his cause. While he was trapped in Egypt, his Republican opponents were able to raise another vast army in Africa, while Mark Antony’s rule alienated many in Italy. Elsewhere Pharnaces, son of Mithridates of Pontus, defeated a Roman army at Nicopolis, threatening the settlement of the east. Once Caesar was freed from his Egyptian entanglement he quickly restored the situation. First he defeated Pharnaces at Zela, and then he defeated the Republicans at Thapsus, ended the last serious opposition to his rule.


After pursuing his rival Pompey to Egypt, Caesar, recently victorious in a civil war closer to home, became entwined in the Alexandrine civil war after his rival, Pompey Magnus, was killed by King Ptolemy XIII in an attempt to please Caesar.

From September 48 BC until January 47 BC, Caesar was besieged in Alexandria, Egypt with about 4,000 men. He was attempting to resolve the Egyptian Civil War between Ptolemy XIII and his sister Cleopatra. When Caesar began to appear to favor Cleopatra over him, Ptolemy was first captured, but then released by Caesar, and gathered his army to besiege the Romans in a small area of Alexandria.

By January, the Egyptians had begun to get the upper hand in their efforts to cut the Romans off from reinforcements and resupply. Caesar had requested reinforcements from his ally, Mithridates of Pergamum, who marched overland from Asia Minor to assist him. Arriving in the Nile delta in January, Mithridates defeated an Egyptian force sent to stop him. Caesar, getting a message that his allies were close, left a small garrison in Alexandria and hurried to meet them. The combined force, about 20,000 strong, met the Egyptians in February 47 BC at the Battle of the Nile. The Egyptian army, equipped in the Greek manner, was probably about the same size.


The Burning of the Library of Alexandria

The loss of the ancient world's single greatest archive of knowledge, the Library of Alexandria, has been lamented for ages. But how and why it was lost is still a mystery. The mystery exists not for lack of suspects but from an excess of them.

Alexandria was founded in Egypt by Alexander the Great. His successor as Pharaoh, Ptolemy I Soter, founded the Museum (also called Museum of Alexandria, Greek Mouseion, “Seat of the Muses”) or Royal Library of Alexandria in 283 BC. The Museum was a shrine of the Muses modeled after the Lyceum of Aristotle in Athens. The Museum was a place of study which included lecture areas, gardens, a zoo, and shrines for each of the nine muses as well as the Library itself. It has been estimated that at one time the Library of Alexandria held over half a million documents from Assyria, Greece, Persia, Egypt, India and many other nations. Over 100 scholars lived at the Museum full time to perform research, write, lecture or translate and copy documents. The library was so large it actually had another branch or "daughter" library at the Temple of Serapis.

The first person blamed for the destruction of the Library is none other than Julius Caesar himself. In 48 BC, Caesar was pursuing Pompey into Egypt when he was suddenly cut off by an Egyptian fleet at Alexandria. Greatly outnumbered and in enemy territory, Caesar ordered the ships in the harbor to be set on fire. The fire spread and destroyed the Egyptian fleet. Unfortunately, it also burned down part of the city - the area where the great Library stood. Caesar wrote of starting the fire in the harbor but neglected to mention the burning of the Library. Such an omission proves little since he was not in the habit of including unflattering facts while writing his own history. But Caesar was not without public detractors. If he was solely to blame for the disappearance of the Library it is very likely significant documentation on the affair would exist today.

The second story of the Library's destruction is more popular, thanks primarily to Edward Gibbon's "The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire". But the story is also a tad more complex. Theophilus was Patriarch of Alexandria from 385 to 412 AD. During his reign the Temple of Serapis was converted into a Christian Church (probably around 391 AD) and it is likely that many documents were destroyed then. The Temple of Serapis was estimated to hold about ten percent of the overall Library of Alexandria's holdings. After his death, his nephew Cyril became Patriarch. Shortly after that, riots broke out when Hierax, a Christian monk, was publicly killed by order of Orestes the city Prefect. Orestes was said to be under the influence of Hypatia, a female philosopher and daughter of the "last member of the Library of Alexandria". Although it should be noted that some count Hypatia herself as the last Head Librarian.

Alexandria had long been known for its violent and volatile politics. Christians, Jews and Pagans all lived together in the city. One ancient writer claimed that there was no people who loved a fight more than those of Alexandria. Immediately after the death of Hierax a group of Jews who had helped instigate his killing lured more Christians into the street at night by proclaiming that the Church was on fire. When the Christians rushed out the largely Jewish mob slew many of them. After this there was mass havoc as Christians retaliated against both the Jews and the Pagans - one of which was Hypatia. The story varies slightly depending upon who tells it but she was taken by the Christians, dragged through the streets and murdered.

Some regard the death of Hypatia as the final destruction of the Library. Others blame Theophilus for destroying the last of the scrolls when he razed the Temple of Serapis prior to making it a Christian church. Still others have confused both incidents and blamed Theophilus for simultaneously murdering Hypatia and destroying the Library though it is obvious Theophilus died sometime prior to Hypatia.

The final individual to get blamed for the destruction is the Moslem Caliph Omar. In 640 AD the Moslems took the city of Alexandria. Upon learning of "a great library containing all the knowledge of the world" the conquering general supposedly asked Caliph Omar for instructions. The Caliph has been quoted as saying of the Library's holdings, "they will either contradict the Koran, in which case they are heresy, or they will agree with it, so they are superfluous." So, allegedly, all the texts were destroyed by using them as tinder for the bathhouses of the city. Even then it was said to have taken six months to burn all the documents. But these details, from the Caliph's quote to the incredulous six months it supposedly took to burn all the books, weren't written down until 300 years after the fact. These facts condemning Omar were written by Bishop Gregory Bar Hebræus, a Christian who spent a great deal of time writing about Moslem atrocities without much historical documentation.

So who did burn the Library of Alexandria? Unfortunately most of the writers from Plutarch (who apparently blamed Caesar) to Edward Gibbons (a staunch atheist or deist who liked very much to blame Christians and blamed Theophilus) to Bishop Gregory (who was particularly anti-Moslem, blamed Omar) all had an axe to grind and consequently must be seen as biased. Probably everyone mentioned above had some hand in destroying some part of the Library's holdings. The collection may have ebbed and flowed as some documents were destroyed and others were added. For instance, Mark Antony was supposed to have given Cleopatra over 200,000 scrolls for the Library long after Julius Caesar is accused of burning it.

It is also quite likely that even if the Museum was destroyed with the main library the outlying "daughter" library at the Temple of Serapis continued on. Many writers seem to equate the Library of Alexandria with the Library of Serapis although technically they were in two different parts of the city.

The real tragedy of course is not the uncertainty of knowing who to blame for the Library's destruction but that so much of ancient history, literature and learning was lost forever.

Selected sources:
"The Vanished Library" by Luciano Canfora
"Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire" by Edward Gibbons


9 Three Intrigues, An Execution, And An Exile

Ptolemy I was followed by his son, Ptolemy II Philadelphus, but it was his daughter, Arsinoe II, who proved to be adept at intrigue and ruthless enough to seize power. The true extent of her influence is debated by historians, but every court she arrived at seemed to have someone quickly lose power in her favor.

Ptolemy II strengthened his rule through two diplomatic weddings with Lysimachus, king of Thrace and another of Alexander&rsquos Diadochi. Circa 299 BC, Lysimachus married Ptolemy&rsquos sister, Arsinoe II, while the pharaoh wed the Thracian&rsquos daughter, also called Arsinoe. [2]

The Ptolemaic Arsinoe gave Lysimachus three sons, but none of them was positioned for the throne as the king already had a son named Agathocles. However, the heir apparent was convicted of treason around 282 BC and executed. Some historians claimed this was the work of Arsinoe to secure the kingship for her sons. This made certain cities in Asia Minor revolt against Lysimachus. The king tried to quell the rebellion but was killed in battle.

Arsinoe then married her half-brother Ptolemy Ceraunus who wanted to strengthen his claim to the kingdoms of Thrace and Macedonia. She may have plotted against him, but the queen&rsquos plan failed and Ceraunus killed two of her sons.

Eventually, Arsinoe made her way back to Egypt. The Thracian Arsinoe, who was her brother&rsquos wife, was soon exiled for planning to murder the king. Again, rumors appeared that the accusations were the work of the pharaoh&rsquos sister. Soon after that, she married her brother and became queen of Egypt.


Theory 3: Muslims

The last possible perpetrator of this crime would be the Muslim Caliph, Omar. According to this story, a certain “John Grammaticus” (490–570) asks Amr, the victorious Muslim general, for the “books in the royal library." Amr writes to the Omar for instructions and Omar replies:

If those books are in agreement with the Quran, we have no need of them and if these are opposed to the Quran, destroy them.

There are at least two problems with this story. Firstly, there is no mention of any library, only books. Secondly, this was written by a Syrian Christian writer, and may have been invented to tarnish the image of Omar.


Related stories

However, a headless skeleton of a female child in a 20 BC tomb in Ephesus (Turkey) linked Cleopatra to an African lineage. The now-missing skull found together with old notes and photographs, is believed to be the body of Arsinoe IV, Cleopatra’s half-sister.

In a BBC documentary broadcast in 2009 spotlighting Cleopatra’s possible African lineage, Hilke Thür of the Austrian Academy of Sciences who in the 1990s examined the skeleton and hypothesized that Arsinoe’s mother was African and there is the possibility that Cleopatra’s unknown mother was also African, explaining why they were not mentioned at all.

“It is unique in the life of an archaeologist to find the tomb and the skeleton of a member of Ptolemaic dynasty. The results of the forensic examination and the fact that the facial reconstruction shows that Arsinoe had an African mother is a real sensation which leads to a new insight on Cleopatra’s family and the relationship of the sisters Cleopatra and Arsinoe,” said Dr Hilke Thür.

A depiction of Cleopatra…School Work Helper

Cleopatra’s rise started after a revolt in 58 BC when she accompanied her father, Ptolemy XII, to Rome. Berenice IV, Cleopatra’s sister then ascended the throne in Egypt. In 55 BC, Ptolemy XII, reclaimed the seat in Egypt with the help of Roman military forces Berenice was also killed.

In 51 BC, Ptolemy XII died Cleopatra and her brother, Ptolemy VIII were named as co-rulers. Soon, the two became enemies and a civil war broke out.

Julius Caesar, a consul of the Roman Republic at the time attempted to resolve the rift between Cleopatra and Ptolemy VIII. Ptolemy rejected the terms and in what is known as the siege of Alexandria, Cleopatra and Caesar were besieged at the palace.

In 47 BC, Ptolemy VIII died in the Battle of the Nile Caesar was elected as a dictator and he instated Cleopatra and her younger brother Ptolemy XIV as joint rulers of Egypt.

All the while, Cleopatra and Caesar were engaged in an affair that produced a son, Caesarion or Ptolemy XV. Caesar was still married to a prestigious woman named Calpurnia.

In 44 BC, Caesar was assassinated. Cleopatra attempted to have Caesarion ascend the throne by naming him as her heir however, Caesar’s grandnephew Octavian was named as heir instead.

Ceramic sculpture of Cleopatra…OUP Blog

Cleopatra then devised a plan, had her brother Ptolemy XIV killed by poison and instituted Caesarion as her joint-ruler.

Later in 41 BC, Cleopatra and Mark Antony began a romantic affair. They bore three children named Alexander Helios, Cleopatra Selene II and Ptolemy Philadelphus.

Antony held the position of triumvir a trio of rulers. He used his position to execute Cleopatra’s sister, Arsinoe IV. Cleopatra greenlighted the killing.

Antony married Cleopatra while married to his wife, Octavia. Antony used Cleopatra’s military prowess and funds to assist in his conquests such as those of the Parthian Empire and the Kingdom of Armenia.

Antony and Cleopatra’s children were deemed the rulers of various regions under Roman rule. Cleopatra was also given control over the territories Phoenicia – present-day Lebanon and Ptolemais Akko modern day Acre, Israel.

Cleopatra and Antony were defeated in the Battle of Actium Subsequently, Octavian forces invaded Egypt and Antony’s forces in 30 BC.

Antony committed suicide after being lied to that Cleopatra had killed herself. Cleopatra then embalmed and buried Antony within her tomb.

Cleopatra learned that Antony planned to have her and her children taken to Rome by Octavius for Antony’s triumphal procession. Cleopatra also committed suicide by injecting the poison of an asp in her body. She was buried next to Antony in her tomb.

Cleopatra was revered for her leadership qualities. She held the titles of diplomat, naval commander, linguist and medical author. She was proficient in the Egyptian language, Ethiopian, Trogodyte, Aramaic, Arabic, the Syrian language Syriac, Median, Parthian and Latin. It is said that Cleopatra wished to place North Africa under the reign of the Ptolemaic Empire.

Cleopatra was single-handedly responsible for establishing laws of the land, holding the title of high priestess which catered to the religious needs of her constituents she directed Egyptian and Greek ceremonies, led the formulations of Egyptian and Greek temples and a synagogue. She also directed the building of the Caesareum of Alexandria dedicated to the cult worshipping of Julius Caesar.

Cleopatra built warehouses of food to combat famine, attempted to stabilize the economy by forming fixed exchange rates for foreign currency, and impose taxes, tariffs and price regulation. These attributes made her one of the greatest leaders of ancient Egypt.


Alexandria History

Alexandria, named after Alexander the Great, is considered to be Egypt's second capital because of its historical importance and population. It is Egypt's second largest city. In 332 BC the young 25-year old Alexander founded the city. His chief architect, Dinocrates, was appointed to spearhead this project which was intended to see Alexandria replace Naucratis as a Hellenistic center in Egypt, and to be the link between Greece and the rich Nile Valley. The Egyptian fishing village of Rhakotis (Ra-Kedet, in Egyptian) already existed on the shore, and later gave its name to Alexandria, becoming the Egyptian quarter of the new city. Only a few months following its foundation, Alexander left the city named for him, never to return. One of his favorite generals, Ptolemy, struggled with other successors of Alexander. Â


Becoming governor of Egypt, Ptolemy succeeded in bringing Alexander's body to back Alexandria (Aelian, Varia Historia, 12.64). The primary Ptolemaic work in the city seems to have been the Heptastadion and the mainland quarters, although Cleomenes was principally responsible for oversight of Alexandria's continuous development. Inheriting the trade of the ruined Tyre, Alexandria grew to be larger than Carthage in less than a generation, becoming the center of the new commerce between Europe and the Arabian and Indian East. Only a century after its foundation, Alexandria became the largest city in the world and, centuries later, was second only to Rome. It became the major Greek city of Egypt, with an extraordinary combination of Greeks from several cities and backgrounds. In addition to being a centre of Hellenism, Alexandria was home to the world's largest Jewish community. It was here that the Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible, the Septuagint, was written. The early Ptolemies fostered the development of a temple of the Muses (whence the word Museum) into what was to become the great Library of Alexandria, the leading center of Hellenistic learning throughout the world. While the Ptolemies carefully maintained the ethnic distinction of the Greek, Jewish and Egyptian populations, these largest groups of the population created divisions and tensions beginning under the reign of Ptolemy Philopater who ruled from 221-204 BC.


The civil unrest evolving out of these tensions developed into civil warfare and the purges of Ptolemy VIII Physcon who reigned from 144-116 BC (Josephus, Antiquities 12.235,243 13.267,268 14.250). While Alexandria had been under Roman influence for over a hundred years, it was in 80 BC that it passed under Roman jurisdiction, in accordance with the will of Ptolemy Alexander. Civil war broke out between King Ptolemy XIII and his advisers, against the renowned Queen Cleopatra VII. Julius Caesar intervened in the civil war in 47 BC and captured the city. On August 1 in 30 BC Octavian, the future emperor Augustus, finally conquered Egypt. The name of the month was later changed to August to commemorate his victory. Much of the city of Alexandria was destroyed during the Kitos War in AD 115. This gave the emperor Hadrian an opportunity to rebuild the city through the work of his architect, Decriannus. Emperor Caracalla visited the city in AD 215 and, having been offended by some insulting satires directed at him by the citizens, he commanded his troops to put to death those youths capable of bearing arms. Alexandria was ravaged by a tsunami on 21 July 365 (365 Crete earthquake), [3]. Seventeen hundred years later, this tragedy is still commemorated as a day of horror.


In the late 300's the persecution of pagans by newly Christianized Romans intensified, culminating in the destruction of all pagan temples in Alexandria by Patriarch Theophilus who was acting under the orders of Emperor Theodosius I. The city's Jewish quarters along with the Brucheum were desolate by 5th century. On the mainland, it appears that life revolved around the area of the Serapeum and Caesareum, both buildings becoming Christian churches. However, the Pharos and Heptastadium quarters remained populous and intact. [citation needed] Alexandria fell to the Sassanid Persians in their conquest of 619 to be briefly recovered in 629 by Emperor Heraclius. In 641, after a fourteen-month siege, the city was captured by General Amr ibn al-As. It played a prominent part in Napoleon's military operations during his expedition to Egypt in 1798 until the French were routed by the British in a notable victory at the Battle of Alexandria on 21 March 1801. The subsequent siege of the town resulted in the fall of Alexandria to the British on 2 September 1801. The rebuilding and redevelopment of the city commenced around 1810 under Mohammed Ali, the Ottoman Governor of Egypt. By 1850, Alexandria had been restored to something of its former glory. [5] It was bombarded by British naval forces in July 1882, and occupied. In July of 1954 the city became the target of an Israeli bombing campaign which later became known as the Lavon Affair. An attempt to assassinate Gamal Abdel Nasser failed in Alexandria's Mansheyya Square in October of that same year.


Aftermath

By 2 September total of 10,000 French surrendered under terms which allowed them to keep their personal weapons and baggage, and to return to France on British ships. However, all French ships and cannons at Alexandria were surrendered to the British.

Of the warships captured in the harbour, the French frigates Égyptienne (50) and Régénérée (40), and the ex-Venetian frigate Léoben (26) went to Britain, while the French frigate Justice (44), the ex-Venetian ship of the line Causse (64) and frigate Mantoue (26), and the ex-Turkish corvettes Halil Bey, Momgo Balerie and Salâbetnümâ went to the Turks, under Capitan Pacha (sic). [ 3 ]

Historians relate that the French garrison, feeling abandoned by an uncaring Republic, gradually abandoned the high standards of conduct and service characteristic of the French Revolutionary Army. Many soldiers refused to renew their oath to the Republic, or did so half-heartedly. [ 4 ] In his memoirs, the surgeon-in-chief of Napoleon's Grand Army, Baron Dominique-Jean Larrey, remembers how the consumption of the meat of young Arab horses helped the French to curb an epidemic of scurvy. He would so start the 19th-century tradition of horse meat consumption in France. [ 5 ]


Alexandria, named after Alexander the Great, is considered to be Egypt's second capital because of its historical importance and population. It is Egypt's second largest city. In 332 BC the young 25-year old Alexander founded the city. His chief architect, Dinocrates, was appointed to spearhead this project which was intended to see Alexandria replace Naucratis as a Hellenistic center in Egypt, and to be the link between Greece and the rich Nile Valley. The Egyptian fishing village of Rhakotis (Ra-Kedet, in Egyptian) already existed on the shore, and later gave its name to Alexandria, becoming the Egyptian quarter of the new city. Only a few months following its foundation, Alexander left the city named for him, never to return. One of his favorite generals, Ptolemy, struggled with other successors of Alexander. Â

Becoming governor of Egypt, Ptolemy succeeded in bringing Alexander's body to back Alexandria (Aelian, Varia Historia, 12.64). The primary Ptolemaic work in the city seems to have been the Heptastadion and the mainland quarters, although Cleomenes was principally responsible for oversight of Alexandria's continuous development. Inheriting the trade of the ruined Tyre, Alexandria grew to be larger than Carthage in less than a generation, becoming the center of the new commerce between Europe and the Arabian and Indian East. Only a century after its foundation, Alexandria became the largest city in the world and, centuries later, was second only to Rome. It became the major Greek city of Egypt, with an extraordinary combination of Greeks from several cities and backgrounds. In addition to being a centre of Hellenism, Alexandria was home to the world's largest Jewish community. It was here that the Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible, the Septuagint, was written. The early Ptolemies fostered the development of a temple of the Muses (whence the word Museum) into what was to become the great Library of Alexandria, the leading center of Hellenistic learning throughout the world. While the Ptolemies carefully maintained the ethnic distinction of the Greek, Jewish and Egyptian populations, these largest groups of the population created divisions and tensions beginning under the reign of Ptolemy Philopater who ruled from 221-204 BC.

The civil unrest evolving out of these tensions developed into civil warfare and the purges of Ptolemy VIII Physcon who reigned from 144-116 BC (Josephus, Antiquities 12.235,243 13.267,268 14.250). While Alexandria had been under Roman influence for over a hundred years, it was in 80 BC that it passed under Roman jurisdiction, in accordance with the will of Ptolemy Alexander. Civil war broke out between King Ptolemy XIII and his advisers, against the renowned Queen Cleopatra VII. Julius Caesar intervened in the civil war in 47 BC and captured the city. On August 1 in 30 BC Octavian, the future emperor Augustus, finally conquered Egypt. The name of the month was later changed to August to commemorate his victory. Much of the city of Alexandria was destroyed during the Kitos War in AD 115. This gave the emperor Hadrian an opportunity to rebuild the city through the work of his architect, Decriannus. Emperor Caracalla visited the city in AD 215 and, having been offended by some insulting satires directed at him by the citizens, he commanded his troops to put to death those youths capable of bearing arms. Alexandria was ravaged by a tsunami on 21 July 365 (365 Crete earthquake), [3]. Seventeen hundred years later, this tragedy is still commemorated as a day of horror.

In the late 300's the persecution of pagans by newly Christianized Romans intensified, culminating in the destruction of all pagan temples in Alexandria by Patriarch Theophilus who was acting under the orders of Emperor Theodosius I. The city's Jewish quarters along with the Brucheum were desolate by 5th century. On the mainland, it appears that life revolved around the area of the Serapeum and Caesareum, both buildings becoming Christian churches. However, the Pharos and Heptastadium quarters remained populous and intact. [citation needed] Alexandria fell to the Sassanid Persians in their conquest of 619 to be briefly recovered in 629 by Emperor Heraclius. In 641, after a fourteen-month siege, the city was captured by General Amr ibn al-As. It played a prominent part in Napoleon's military operations during his expedition to Egypt in 1798 until the French were routed by the British in a notable victory at the Battle of Alexandria on 21 March 1801. The subsequent siege of the town resulted in the fall of Alexandria to the British on 2 September 1801. The rebuilding and redevelopment of the city commenced around 1810 under Mohammed Ali, the Ottoman Governor of Egypt. By 1850, Alexandria had been restored to something of its former glory. [5] It was bombarded by British naval forces in July 1882, and occupied. In July of 1954 the city became the target of an Israeli bombing campaign which later became known as the Lavon Affair. An attempt to assassinate Gamal Abdel Nasser failed in Alexandria's Mansheyya Square in October of that same year.


Cleopatra Facts

Cleopatra VII Philosopher (69 BC – 12 August 30 BC) was an Egyptian queen and the last pharaoh of ancient Egypt. She was a member of the Ptolemaic dynasty, a Greek-speaking dynasty that ruled Egypt in 300 BC. Deposited from power by her brother, She is aligned herself with Julius Caesar to regain the throne. After Caesar’s murder, she became Mark Antony’s lover. But after Mark Antony was defeated by Octavian’s forces during the Roman civil war, Antony and Cleopatra committed suicide, rather than fall into Octavian hands. His death marked the end of the Ptolemaic kingdom of Egypt – and Egypt was absorbed by the kingdom of the Ptolemaist.

Cleopatra marriage

Marriage between brother, sister and father-daughter was a long-standing practice in the Egyptian royal family. It was perhaps an emulation of gods like Osiris and Isis and the way of the pharaohs (who were considered as incarnations of the gods themselves) to imitate the gods and goddesses and to distinguish themselves from the rest of the population. Although hated by the Greeks, this practice was introduced to the Ptolemaic dynasty by Ptolemy II and his sister Arsinoe II, a few centuries before Cleopatra VII. Thus, after the death of his father in 51 BC, when she ascended the throne of Egypt with his younger brother Ptolemy XIII, the two may have married as was the custom at the time. The arrangement was not successful, as they both worked against each other, which led to the drowning of Ptolemy XIII as they fled across the Nile in the Battle of the Nile in 47 BC. The Roman general Julius Caesar was meanwhile in an affair with her and put her back on the throne, this time with another of his brothers, Ptolemy XIV who was 12 or 13 years old. The young Pharaoh and Cleopatra were married, but she continued to act as Julius Caesar’s lover, keeping for herself the present authority over Egypt

Ambitious Cleopatra

Cleopatra was an ambitious queen. She wanted to control her kingdom since her ascension as Queen of the Pharaoh in 51 BC. In 48 BC, She succeeded in charming the esteemed Roman general Caesar during her visit to Alexandria, thus exacerbating the rivalry between her and her brother Ptolemy XIII, her husband. The ensuing policy led to the siege of the Palace of Alexandria with Caesar and Cleopatra trapped together inside. Arsinoe IV, the younger sister of the two, had joined forces with her brother Ptolemy XIII against her sister Cleopatra in this fight. The siege ended in 47 BC after Caesar’s reinforcements arrived and he won the battle of the Nile. Ptolemy drowned in the Nile and Arsinoe was exiled to the Temple of Artemis in Ephesus. A few years later, in 41 BC, Arsinoe was executed on the steps of the same temple, on the orders of another lover of his sister, Mark Antony.

Cleopatra and Dictator

Ptolemy XIV was Cleopatra’s youngest brother who was appointed Pharaoh in 47 BC after the death of Ptolemy XIII. Although she was married to him, she continued to act as the lover of the Roman dictator Caesar. Perhaps it was Caesar’s assassination in 44 B.C. in Rome that precipitated the death of Ptolemy XIV. She probably poisoned him with aconite. Ptolemy XIV was replaced by Ptolemy XV Caesar, better known as Caesarion, who was her child with Caesar. Now that her infant child was co-regent, her position in Egypt was more secure than ever and she intended to support her child as her father’s successor

Cleopatra on her way to power in Egypt

In 48 BC, after the assassination of his political rival Pompey, Julius Caesar arrived in Alexandria hoping to repay the debts contracted by Cleopatra’s father, Auletes. Ptolemy XIII who had ordered the assassination of Pompey hoped to obtain Caesar’s favor, but Caesar was furious at the murder of a Roman consul by a foreigner. Cleopatra, on the other hand, needed Caesar’s support to regain full control of his brother’s Egypt. The historian Cassius Dio tells how she was, without informing his brother, charmed Caesar with his pretty dress and his spirit. Plutarch, on the other hand, provides a more captivating account, alleging that she smuggled into the palace to meet Caesar tied in a bed bag. In any case, she and Caesar were soon involved in a case that propelled her to power in Egypt and lasted until Caesar’s assassination in 44 BC. She gave birth a Son named Ptolemy XV Caesar in 47 BC, who would be the child of Julius Caesar.

Cleopatra is known to have joined Julius Caesar in Rome somewhere in 46 B.C., where she was housed in Caesar’s private villa beyond the Tiber. At that time, Caesar granted her and Ptolemy XIV the legal status of “friend and ally of the Roman people”, and it is possible that he also established the golden statue of Cleopatra in the Temple of Genetrix.

This Queen was in Rome when Caesar was assassinated in 44 B.C. She prolonged her stay in the vain hope that Caesar’s son, Caesar’s son of love, would be recognized as Caesar’s heir. The revelation of Caesar’s will and the declaration of his nephew’s grandson Octavian as his main heir left her depressed and she soon went to Egypt.

Cleopatra and Mark Antony

Cleopatra began her legendary love affair with the Roman general Marc Antony in 41 BC. Their relationship had a political component – she needed Antony to protect his crown and maintain Egypt’s independence, while Antony needed access to Egypt’s wealth and resources – but they were also very attached to each other. According to the ancient sources, they spent the winter of 41-40 BC living a life of leisure and excess in Egypt, and even formed their own drinking society known as the “Inimitable Liver”. The group was involved in night and wine festivals, and its members occasionally participated in elaborate games and contests. One of Antony and Cleopatra’s favorite activities would have been to wander the streets of Alexandria in disguise and play tricks on its inhabitants.

Cleopatra led a fleet in a naval battle.

She eventually married Mark Antony and had three children with him, but their relationship also caused a massive scandal in Rome. Antony’s rival, Octavian, used propaganda to portray him as a traitor under the influence of an intriguing seductress, and in 32 BC, the Roman Senate declared war on her. The conflict reached its peak the following year during a famous naval battle in Actium. Cleopatra personally led several dozen Egyptian warships into the melee alongside Antony’s fleet, but they were not up to Octavian’s fleet. The battle soon turned into a rout, and she and Antony were forced to break through the Roman line and flee to Egypt.

Cleopatra Defeat and Death

Cleopatra and Antony committed suicide in 30 BC after Octavian forces pursued them in Alexandria. While Antony is said to have stabbed himself to death in the stomach, Her method of suicide is less certain. Legend has it that she died seducing an “asp” – probably an Egyptian viper or cobra – to bite her arm, but the former columnist Plutarch admits that “what really happened is unknown to anyone”. He says she was also known to hide a deadly poison in one of her hair combs, and historian Strabo notes that she may have applied a fatal “ointment”. It is in this spirit that many researchers now suspect that she used a pin soaked in a form of powerful snake toxin venom or other.


Military sieges [ edit | edit source ]

Ancient [ edit | edit source ]

    (c. 1530 BC) (c. 1457 BC) (c. 1296 BC) (c. 1200 BC)
  • Siege of Rabbah (10th century BC) (Bible Reference: II Samuel 11-12)
  • Siege of Abel-beth-maachah (10th century BC) (Bible Reference: II Samuel 20:15-22) (10th century BC) by Egyptian pharaoh Shoshenq I
  • Siege of Samaria (9th century BC) (Bible Reference: II Kings 6:24-7:7) (701 BC) (701 BC) (701 BC) – the Assyrian siege of Sennacherib by Nebuchadnezzar II by Nebuchadnezzar II Part of the Ionian Revolt and the Greco-Persian Wars (490 BC) - Part of the Persian invasion and the Greco-Persian Wars (415 BC) – the Athenian siege (334 BC) (334 BC) by Alexander the Great (332 BC) (329 BC) (327 BC) (c. 327 BC) (305 BC) by Demetrius Poliorcetes (278 BC) - Part of the Pyrrhic War (261 BC) - Part of the First Punic War (255 BC) - Part of the First Punic War (249-241 BC) - Part of the First Punic War (218 BC) – casus belli for the Second Punic War (214–212 BC) – the Roman siege (149–146 BC) by Scipio Aemilianus Africanus (134–133 BC) by Scipio Aemilianus Africanus (73 BC) by Pompey the Great (52 BC) by Herod the Great (67 AD) (70 AD) – the Roman siege of Titus (72-73 or 73-74 AD) (193 AD–196 AD) by Septimius Severus forces. (344) (356) (356) (359 AD) (452) by Attila

Medieval [ edit | edit source ]

    - Ostrogothic conquest of Italy - part of the Gothic War - part of the Gothic War (541) - part of the Gothic War - part of the Gothic War - part of the Gothic War - part of the Gothic War (555–556) - part of the Lazic War - Lombard conquest of Italy (580–582) - Avar conquest of the city – Attack on the city by Slavs and Avars by the Persians by the Persians under Shahrbaraz – Attack on the city by Slavs – Attack on the city by Slavs and Avars
  • The Siege of Constantinople (626) by Avars and Sassanid Persians in 626
  • The Siege of Derbent (627)
  • The Siege of Tbilisi (628) - almost certainly fictional (630) (635) by Khalid ibn al-Walid (Rashidun general) (637) (637) (638) (645) in 674–678 – Attack on the city by Slavs by the Umayyads during the Second Fitna by the Umayyads during the Second Fitna by the Umayyads by the Umayyads by the Umayyads (729) by the Turgesh (749–750) by the Abbasids by the Abbasids - Lombard kingdom conquered by Charlemagne (799) by the Slavs of the Peloponnese by the Aghlabids (838) by the Abbasids by the Aghlabids by the Aghlabids by the Aghlabids by Saracen corsairs (971) by the Byzantines (Spring 1063) (1068–1071) - Norman conquest of Southern Italy (1071–1072) - Norman conquest of Southern Italy (1097) – part of the First Crusade (1097–1098) – part of the First Crusade (1098) (1098) – part of the First Crusade (1099) – part of the First Crusade (1102–1109) (1140) (1144) (1147) (1148) (1159–1160) - part of the wars between Holy Roman Emperor Frederick I and the Northern Italy cities (1160) – the main action of the Heiji Rebellion took place in Kyoto (1161–1162) - part of the wars between Holy Roman Emperor Frederick I and the Northern Italy cities - the first major clash of the Norman invasion of Ireland (1174–1175) - part of the wars between Holy Roman Emperor Frederick I and the Lombard League (1180) – during Genpei War (1183) (1185) by the Normans (1187) (1187) – part of the Fourth Crusade (1203) – part of the Fourth Crusade (1204) – part of the Fourth Crusade (1207) (1214) (1215) - King Johns Danish mercenaries attempt to take the castle of Rochester during the First Baron's war. (1215) – Genghis Khan conquers Zhongdu, now Beijing (1235) – a joint Bulgarian-Nicaean siege on the capital of the Latin Empire. (1236) – Batu Khan conquers the city of Bilär. (1240) – Mongol conquest of Kiev. (1243–1244) by the Khwarezmians (1247–1248) - part of the wars between Holy Roman Emperor Frederick II and the Lombard League (1267–1273) – Mongol conquest of the city of Xiangyang in the invasion of the Southern Song. (1302–1303) – first siege of Gibraltar, by Juan Alfonso de Guzman el Bueno in the Reconquista – second siege of Gibraltar, by the Nasrid caid Yahya in the Reconquista , by Cangrande I della Scala, lord of Verona (1326) by Ottoman Turks (1328–1331) – part of the Byzantine-Ottoman wars (1333) – end of Ashikaga shogunate. – third siege of Gibraltar, by a Marinids army, led by Abd al-Malik in the Reconquista – fourth siege of Gibraltar, by King Alfonso XI of Castile in the Reconquista – part of the Byzantine-Ottoman Wars
  • (1346) (1346–1347) – Hundred Years' War – fifth siege of Gibraltar, by Alfonso XI in the Reconquista (1370) – sixth siege of Gibraltar, by the Nasrid in the Reconquista (1378–1390) (1382 or 1385) (1393) (1410) – in the aftermath of the Battle of Grunwald (1418) – reopening of the Hundred Years' War (1420) (1422) – first siege of Constantinople, by the Murad II (1429) (1429) – seventh siege of Gibraltar, by the count of Niebla in the Reconquista (1453) – second siege of Constantinople by the Mehmed II

Early modern [ edit | edit source ]

Monks successfully defended the Troitse-Sergiyeva Lavra against the Poles from September 1609 to January 1611.

    (1456) – part of Ottoman wars in Europe – eighth siege of Gibraltar, by a Castilian army in the Reconquista (1461–1468) – part of Wars of the Roses. Longest siege in British history. (1463) – ninth siege of Gibraltar, by the Duke of Medina Sidonia (1474–1475) (1480) – first siege of Rhodes (1480–1481) (1482) (1486) (1487) (1492) – tenth siege of Gibraltar, by the Duke of Medina Sidonia (1509) - part of Italian wars
  • Siege of Smolensk (1514) (1517) (1521) – fall of the Aztec Empire. (1522) – second siege of Rhodes - part of Italian wars (1526) (1529) (1529) – first siege of Vienna (1529–1530) - part of Italian wars (1532) by Ottomans (1534) (1536–1537) (1536–1537) (1538) (1539) (1543) (1548) (1550) (1522) (1552) – part of Russo-Kazan wars (1552–1554) (1552) – part of Ottoman-Habsburg wars (1554–1555) - part of Italian wars (1560) (1563) (1565) (1566) – Ottoman siege during which Suleiman the Magnificent died (1567) (1569)
  • Turkish siege of Nicosia, Cyprus (1570)
  • Turkish siege of Famagusta, Cyprus (1570–1571) (1570–1580) – longest siege in Japanese history (1571) – part of Russo-Crimean Wars

During the Cologne War (1583–1589), Ferdinand of Bavaria successfully besieged the medieval fortress of Godesberg during a month-long siege, his sappers dug tunnels under the feldspar of the mountain and laid gunpowder and a 1500 pound bomb. The result was a spectacular explosion that sent chunks of the ramparts, the walls, the gates, and drawbridges into the air. His 500 men still could not take the fortress until they scaled the interior latrine system and climbed the mountain to enter through a hole in the chapel roof.

    (1571, 1573, 1574) (1572) (1572) (1574) (1575) (1578) (1581) (1581–1582) (1584) (1584) (1584) (1584) (1584–1585) (1590) (1592) (1601–1602) (1601–1604) – (1609–1611) – 20 months (1609–1611) – 16 months (1614–1615) (1624–1625) (1627–1628) (1628–1629)
  • Siege of Mantua (1629–1630)
  • Siege of Casale Monferrato (1629–1631) (1629) (1632), Thirty Years' War (1637–1638) (1637–1642) – part of Russo-Turkish Wars by Ottomans (Crete) (1648–1669) –The longest siege in history (1649) -Cromwellian conquest of Ireland (1649) (1649–1650) (1650) , Ireland (1651) (1652) (1656) – during The Deluge
  • Siege of Riga (1656) – in the Russo-Swedish War of 1656–1658 (1658–1659) Second Northern War, Swedes defeated by Danish and Dutch defenders (1664) in northern Croatia – Austro–Turkish War (1663–64) (1667) (1668–1676) – eight years
    (1672) (1672) (1673) (1683) – second siege of Vienna (1689) (1690) – first siege of Québec City , Ireland (1690–1691) (1691) (1704) – eleventh siege of Gibraltar, by Sir George Rooke's Anglo-Dutch fleet
    (1704–1705) – twelfth siege of Gibraltar, by a Spanish-French army (1704–1705), during the War of the Spanish Succession (1706), during the War of the Spanish Succession (1707), during the War of the Spanish Succession (1708) (1714), during the War of the Spanish Succession (1718) (1727) – thirteenth siege of Gibraltar, by a Spanish army (1734) (1739) (1741) – by Edward Vernon in the War of Jenkins' Ear , during the War of the Austrian Succession , during the War of the Austrian Succession (1746), during the War of the Austrian Succession (1757), during the Seven Years' War
  • Siege of Olomouc (1758) – by Frederick the Great in the Seven Years' War (1759) – second siege of Québec City (1761)
  • Siege of Havana (1762) British fleet headed by George Keppel, 3rd Earl of Albemarle lays siege to Spanish controlled Havana for a month. (1775–1776) (1779–1783) – fourteenth siege of Gibraltar, by a Spanish-French army in the American Revolutionary War (1781) (1796–1797) – First Coalition, French besieging (1799) – Second Coalition, French defending (1799)

Modern [ edit | edit source ]

American soldiers scale the walls of Beijing to relieve the Siege of the Legations, August 1900


Watch the video: Cleopatra u0026 the Siege of Alexandria 48 to 47.