Alexander's Campaign > Siege of Sogdian Rock

Siege of Sogdian Rock

Alexander the Great - Dove Decoration

Background

Siege of Sogdian Rock

Part of the Persian Campaign

Alexander the Great - Siege of Sogdian Rock: Historical Atlas (1923)

Sogdian Rock, Sogdiana - Historical Atlas (1923)

Date: 327 BC

Location: Sogdia (Sogdiana)

Coordinates: 38,0955830, 67,1841870

+ See More

Combatants
Cyrus the Great, Achaemenid Empire StandardKingdom of MacedonSogdia (Sogdiana)
Hellenic League
Commanders
Cyrus the Great, Achaemenid Empire StandardCoenusSpitamenes
Military Forces
300Unknown
Casualties
30None

Aftermath: Macedonian victory

Territorial Changes: Alexander gains Sogdia (Sogdiana)

Next Battle: Battle of Gabai

Previous Battle: Indian Campaign

The Siege of Sogdian Rock or the Rock of Ariamazes was the name of an engagement in the early spring of 327 BC during Alexander's Indian Campaign that occurred in the northern portion of Bactria known as Sogdia (Sogdiana). Here the forces of Alexander III the Great managed to capture the fortress which was held by Oxyartes.

Oxyartes had previously send his wife and daughters, one of whom was Roxana to the citadel hoping it would be secure from the Macedonians on their conquest of the rest of the Achaemenid Empire. The Rock of Ariamazes contained enough food and supplies to withstand a prolonged siege and the Sogdians believed it to be impenetrable. As Alexander and the Macedonian Army approached they taunted the defenders and asked them to surrender. The Sogdians refused, telling the Greeks that they would need to grow wings in order to reach their citadel.

The Siege

Alexander asked for volunteers, whom he would reward if they could climb the cliffs under the fortress. There were some 300 men who from previous sieges had gained experience in rock-climbing. Using tent pegs and strong flaxen lines, they climbed the cliff face at night, losing about 30 of their number during the ascent. In accordance with Alexander's orders, they signalled their success to the troops below by waving bits of linen, and Alexander sent a herald to tell the defenders that if they looked up, they would see that he had found his winged men. The defenders were so surprised and demoralized by this that they surrendered, even though they outnumbered the mountaineers by a hundred to one and Alexander's main force still had no way to reach the summit. The defenders had thought that the Rock was impregnable, and with one bold stroke Alexander showed them how wrong they were. The enemy's quick surrender validated Alexander's insightful use of psychological warfare.[1][2]

Aftermath

Following the capture of the fortress Alexander fell in love with Roxana. The Macedonians claimed she was the "the loveliest woman they had seen in Asia, with the one exception of Darius' wife". Following their victory here the Macedonians would advance into Parsetakene where they were supposed to find another fortress called the Rock of Chorienes. This too was quickly taken by the Greeks.

After this Alexander went to the siege Bactra where he was successful yet again. He would divert some of his troops under the command of Craterus to pacify the Parsetakene region after this victory. Alexander and the rest of the Macedonian army remained in Bactra while they plotted the next leg of their expedition across the Hindu Kush and into the rich lands of Indus Valley. While he was in Bactra he would marry Roxana.

Historiography

The story of the Siege of Sogdian Rock can be traced back to the Roman historian named Arrian of Nicomedia who wrote about the engagement in his Anabasis (section 4.18.4-19.6). According to this historians such as P. J. Rhodes have pointed out this makes for a very busy year of 328 BCE and a pretty full 327 BCE very early. The historians propose accepting a second tradition the engagement happens in the summer of 328 BCE.

Alexander's Campaign

Balkan Campaign

+ Balkan Battles

Persian Campaign

+ Persian Battles

Indian Campaign

+ Indian Campaign Battles

Bibliography

Primary Sources

Secondary Sources

Abbott, J. (1848). Alexander the Great. New York & London: Harper & Brothers

Sabalico Logo
Sabali Mail Logo
Domain Search Logo
Test Speed Logo
Website On Logo
Code Editor Logo
ASCII Table Logo
HTML Symbols Logo
Emoji Symbols Logo
Encode File Logo
Generator Password Logo
QR Code Generator Logo
Barcode Generator Logo
Online Sign Logo
Dictionary Online Logo
Counter Word Logo
Text Convert Logo
Lorem Ipsum Generator Logo
Sprite Sheet Logo
Resize Image Logo
Image Compress Logo
Image Color Logo
Image Crop Logo
Combine Images Logo
Color Picker Logo
Color Convert Logo
CSS Gradient Logo
To-Do List Logo
Calendar Free Logo
Generator Meme Logo
Word Spinner Logo
Phone Country Logo
Sabalytics Logo
Senty Logo
World Map Logo
SEO Guide Logo
Keyword Tool Logo
What is my IP Logo
My Device Logo
My Browser Logo
My Location Logo
Time Zone Logo
Day Map Logo
My Weather Logo
My Galaxy Logo
The Moon Logo
Periodic Table Logo
rStatistics Logo
Unit Convert Logo
Data Convert Logo
Coordinate Converter Logo
Temperature Convert Logo
2020 Election Logo
Currency Convert Logo
Free Calculator Logo
Finance Calculator Logo
Loan Calculator Logo
Calculator Mortgage Logo
Stock Calculator Logo
Bond Calculator Logo
Tax Calculator Logo
Tip Calculator Logo
Gas Mileage Logo
History of Humanity - History Archive Logo
History of Humanity - History Mysteries Logo
History of Humanity - Ancient Mesopotamia Logo
History of Humanity - Egypt History Logo
History of Humanity - Persian Empire Logo
History of Humanity - Greek History Logo
History of Humanity - Alexander the Great Logo
History of Humanity - Roman History Logo
History of Humanity - Punic Wars Logo
History of Humanity - Golden Age of Piracy Logo
History of Humanity - Revolutionary War Logo
History of Humanity - Mafia History Logo