Murder of Philip

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  • The wedding of Alexander and Cleopatra was held at the theatre of Aegae, in October 336 BC. Philip had organised musical competitions to play during the wedding ceremony. He did this to show the many Greeks that he had invited that he was a pleasant man and a supreme leader. According to Diodorus "people flocked to the theatre when it was still dark".
  • Philip decorated for statues of the 12 gods and himself to be placed around the theatre. This showed he was loyal to the gods. Once the theatre had been filled, Philip entered himself "wearing a white cloak" (Diodorus). He ordered his bodyguards to follow "at some distance from him, as an indication that he needed no protection of guards".
  • Amid the applause Philip was receiving, Pausanias, the leader of the bodyguards, rushed up to Philip while he was alone and unguarded and stabbed him "right through the ribs." (Diodorus)
  • Pausanias tried to run away and escape on horses he had organised nearby, but tripped up on a vine, and this allowed for the rest of the bodyguards to catch up to him.
  • Two of the bodyguards who speared Pausanias to death were Leonnatus and Perdiccas. They happened to be some of Alexander's friends. While this was happening King Philip had died on the spot he was stabbed. Alexander immediately became the new King of Macedonia.
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