Alexander was born the sixth of Hecatombaeon, which month the Macedonians
call Lous, the same day that the temple of Diana at Ephesus was burnt;
which Hegesias of Magnesia makes the occasion of a conceit, frigid enough
to have stopped the conflagration. The temple, he says, took fire and was
burnt while its mistress was absent, assisting at the birth of Alexander.
And all the Eastern soothsayers who happened to be then at Ephesus, looking
upon the ruin of this temple to be the forerunner of some other calamity,
ran about the town, beating their faces, and crying that this day had brought
forth something that would prove fatal and destructive to all Asia.
Just after Philip had taken Potidaea, he received these three messages
at one time, that Parmenio had overthrown the Illyrians in a great battle,
that his race-horse had won the course at the Olympic games, and that his
wife had given birth to Alexander; with which being naturally well pleased,
as an addition to his satisfaction, he was assured by the diviners that
a son, whose birth was accompanied with three such successes, could not
fail of being invincible.
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