Alexander the Great

“It is clear that in antiquity Alexander was a chameleonlike figure indeed, more a paradigm than a person. For not only was his own character multifaceted and contradictory, but his achievements evoked wildly divergent and contradictory responses from those whom it touched. So he swiftly became a cliché—or rather a set of clichés or topoi—to be evoked in images that are wildly divergent in character, quality, type, provenance, date, and, apparently, purpose.

All this points less to a Hellenistic and Roman “portrait” of Alexander than to a complex and multifarious use of his image and its attendant connotations that extended over many centuries. His face was the most influential in history.” — Andrew Stewart, Faces of Power: Alexander’s Image and Hellenistic Politics