It is often said that history is filled with “what ifs”. What if this was never discovered? What if this land was never conquered? What if this leader never ruled? There are three people who I think if they had not existed, or accomplished what they did, would have changed Western civilization as we know it today. The three people I am going to discuss are Alexander the Great, Julius Caesar, and Constantine. The achievements of these three great rulers helped shape Western civilization as we know it and without them, history would be altered in a very bad way.
Alexander the Great’s actions and decisions significantly impacted the world during his time, ultimately leaving behind a legacy that can be affiliated with the Westernization of the globe. He helped bring the Western civilization, which included the scientific and liberal thinking of the Greeks to much of the rest of the world. He introduced the study of science to the nations and he is also considered one of the most successful military commanders in history. His contribution to science and math helped him discover different things and shaped Western civilization. The men in his army, families, historians, philosophers, poets, scientists, and others traveling with Alexander carried their Western customs with them and he made sure to place Greek and Macedonian people in charge of his conquests along the way. Many people fail to realize that Alexander has had a definite effect on us today. If it wasn’t for his achievements the world as we know it would not be as advanced as it is today.
Julius Caesar was another great ruler whose achievements and accomplishments helped Western civilization as we know it today. Some consider him the greatest politician ever. Caesar was a great military mind and also laid the framework for the Roman Republic. Many leaders have tried to immolate Julius Caesar. He created the Julian calendar which was superseded by the Gregorian calendar. Some orthodox churches however still utilize the Julian calendar. Caesar was a skilled and charismatic military leader as well. He used his knowledge to conquer several territories and expand The Roman Empire. His military techniques are still studied today. He helped lay the framework for how we do politics today and how we strategize our military attacks.
The last great ruler who I think helped Western civilization is Constantine. Constantine is best known for being the first Christian Roman Emperor. Constantine played an influential role in the proclamation of the Edict of Milan in 313 AD, which decreed tolerance for Christianity in the empire. He also stopped the persecution of Christians in his territories. His dynamic yet effective predominance laid the infrastructure of European development. From his humble beginnings to his command of the Roman Empire, to his final days, Constantine’s impact on world history and Christianity has left behind an unforgettable legacy.
The achievements of these men were very important. The way we live today has a lot to do with what these men have achieved. If these accomplishments were not made then the way we live today will be affected in a major way. They have helped shape Western civilization and the way we do things today.