How about a wedding where the father of the bride is murdered at the wedding? The father, a respected and feared military man, enters the wedding banquet space alone. A man, one of the father's soldiers, rushes forward and stabs the father-of-the-bride in the chest with a knife! The father falls dead! Oh no! Chaos erupts! His murderer is quickly captured as he flees and is killed on the spot.
Shocking, right? Wait! It turns out that the father-of-the-bride had a long time sexual affair with the man who would became his murderer. The father ended that affair when he met another man that he fancied more. This upset the father's future murderer and he began to spread rumors that the father's new lover was a filthy whore. The new lover was so upset by the public scandal that he placed himself in danger in a battle and the enemy cut him down!
The dead lover had a powerful friend. This powerful friend was so angered by the scandal and the death of his friend that he had the father's gossip-mongering former lover abducted. In revenge, the friend of the dead man had the former lover gang-raped by his men. I know, right?!
The former lover was utterly humiliated. Though the father-of-the-bride was still fond of his former lover, he did not punish the abductor because he had just married that man's niece, making her his seventh wife. (Still with me?) So, instead he promoted his former lover to try to make him feel better about his abduction and gang rape.
Stewing over his humiliation and not at all satisfied with the promotion, the former lover shifted his revenge. On the day of the wedding, the former lover struck down the father-of-the-bride and was himself quickly killed and his corpse publicly crucified.
As if all of that wasn't scandalous enough, the fourth wife of the dead leader had the murderer's corpse taken down and she built a shrine for it. Whuuuut? It could be that the wife was just happy to get rid of her cheating husband and was willing to overlook that his murderer was somebody her late husband had diddled. Or, could she have been in on the murder the whole time? Hmmm.
Here are the deets:
See, the wife had a son by Philip. But, the wife, because of where she came from and her odd ways, she was considered kind of trashy by her husband's society. I mean, the husband had only married her because it was politically correct to do so, and because she was smokin' hot. But, now older and concerned about his legacy, he wanted an heir with a better pedigree. So, he remarried, this time to a woman that society approved of, the niece of the man who abducted his former lover and had him gang raped. Newly married, the husband set about trying to get new wife pregnant with a son. Didn't work out. New wifey managed a daughter, and then her husband was killed.
At any rate, with the great leader dead, his 20-year-old son by trashy mama took over. History would remember the father, he did many amazing things. The father's legacy, though, would be greatly overshadowed by the son's. He was Alexander II of Macedon, one of history's greatest conquerors.
Take your bows, people:
The father-of-the-bride: Philip II, King of Macedon and conqueror of Greece;
The bride: Cleopatra (not that Cleopatra), daughter of Philip II and sister of Alexander the Great;
The murderer: Pausanias of Orestes;
The new lover: A guy also named Pausanias (maybe Philip had a thing for guys named Pausanias);
The abductor: Attalus, -in-law of Philip II;
The wife: Olympius of Eprius, fourth wife of Philip II and mother of Alexander II, later called the Great.
Philip II was murdered in 336 BC as he prepared to invade Anatolia (Turkey) to fight the Greek world's traditional enemy, the Persian Empire. That war would be taken up by his son, Alexander.
We cannot know how well Philip would have done in his war against Persia. It is possible that he might have been satisfied with conquest of Anatolia, home to many Greek cities. He might have stopped there.
Alexander, however, took Anatolia and kept going, conquering every important territory across the ancient world. It was an unparalleled accomplishment, the first time the entire ancient world bowed to one leader. Greek culture was spread as far east as modern India and Afghanistan, and as far south as Egypt. The Hellenistic Age was launched. Within 300 years, Greek culture would permeate the Mediterranean world through those Latin-speaking newcomers and lovers of all things Greek, the Romans.
So, feel confident that any weddings you attend in 2014 will be fine by comparison.
- George Washington UniversityPolitical Science, 2002 - 2006
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