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CLIP 11837

Coin with head of Alexander the Great (audio)

Coin with head of Alexander the Great (audio)

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Key Info
  • Coin with head of Alexander the Great (audio)
  • Duration: 13:00
  • Neil MacGregor introduces a comprehensive biography of Alexander the Great by examining a coin minted by his successor Lysimachus. He covers the birth, life and imperial successes of the powerful ruler. He discusses how Alexander’s image and glory was appropriated by Lysimachus in the turmoil of fact and fiction following Alexander’s death. This is compared with the contemporary use of images of Chairman Mao on the currency of modern China for similar propaganda purposes. This clip was first broadcast on BBC Radio 4 as part of the ‘History of the World in 100 Objects’ series. Please note this is an audio clip and only available in Flash.
  • Subject:

    Classical Studies


    Great Leaders and Rulers

  • Keywords: propaganda, Alexander the Great, primary evidence, money, coins, archaeology, history, Hellenistic World, Turkey, society, identity, HistoryoftheWorld
Ideas for use in class
  • Students will benefit from the detailed biographical accounts for their study of the ancient world. The appropriation of Alexander’s image by Lysimachus and similar activity by modern leaders will be an excellent starting point for a discussion on re-writing or appropriating the past to suit the political purposes of the present. Images of the object and further information, including a full transcription of the programme, can be found on the programme page:
Background details
  • Clip language : English
  • Aspect ratio : 16x9

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