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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Robin Lane Fox (born 1946) is an English historian, currently a Fellow of New College, Oxford and University of Oxford Reader in Ancient History.[1]


Lane Fox was educated at Eton and Magdalen College, Oxford.

Since 1977, he has been a tutor in Greek and Roman history, and since 1990 University Reader in Ancient History. He has also taught Greek and Latin literature and early Islamic history, a subject in which he held an Oxford Research Fellowship, and is also New College's Tutor for Oriental Studies.[1] He is a lecturer in Ancient History at Exeter College, Oxford.

He was historical advisor to the film director Oliver Stone for the epic Alexander. His appearance as an extra, in addition to his work as a historical consultant, was publicized at the time of the film's release.[2][3]

Lane Fox is also a gardening correspondent for the Financial Times.[4]

He is the father of the internet entrepreneur Martha Lane Fox, the founder of

They are not related to, and should not be confused with Robin Fox, anthropologist, and his daughter Kate Fox, social anthropologist.

Selected publications

  • Alexander the Great (New York: E P Dutton, 1974, ISBN 978-9993440048) (awarded James Tait Black Memorial Prize)
  • The Search for Alexander (London: Viking, 1981, ISBN 978-0713913958)
  • Pagans and Christians: In the Mediterranean World from the Second Century AD to the Conversion of Constantine (London: Viking, 1986, ISBN 978-0670808489; Penguin Books Ltd new edition, 2006, ISBN 978-0141022956)
  • Better Gardening (London: David R. Godine Publ., 1986, ISBN 978-0879236113)
  • The Unauthorized Version: Truth and Fiction in the Bible (1991; new edition by Penguin Books Ltd, 2006, ISBN 978-0141022963)
  • The Making of "Alexander": The Official Guide to the Epic Alexander Film (London: R & L (Lane Fox), 2004, ISBN 978-0951139219)
  • The Classical World: An Epic History from Homer to Hadrian (London: Allen Lane, 2005, ISBN 978-0713998535)
  • Page, Russell, The Education of a Gardener (New York Review of Books reprint, 2007), preface by Robin Lane Fox
  • Travelling Heroes: Greeks and Their Myths in the Epic Age of Homer (London: Allen Lane, 2008, ISBN 978-0713999808)


  1. ^ a b Mr Robin Lane Fox MA Fellow, Tutor and Reader in Ancient History at, accessed 9 August 2008
  2. ^ Into Battle With Alexander in The Times of London online, dated 04 May 2004
  3. ^ CHARGING FOR ALEXANDER dated Wednesday 19 April 2006 at
  4. ^ Gnomes spark row over fairies at Chelsea in The Independent, dated 25 May 2006


Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiquote

Robin Lane Fox (born 1946) is an English academic and historian.


Alexander the Great

  • He was still in a world of Greek gods and sacrifices, of Greek plays and Greek language,though the natives might speak Greek with a northern accent which hardened 'ch' into 'g','th' into 'd' and pronounced King Philip as Bilip.
    • p.30
  • Philip's mother had been a Lyncestian noblewoman" - "rebellious kings of Lyncestis who traced their origins to the notorious Bacchiad kings of Greek Corinth.
    • p.32
  • Olympia's royal ancestry traced back to the hero Achilles, and the blood of Helen of Troy was believed to run on her father's side.
    • p.44
  • The Macedonian kings, who maintained that their Greek ancestry traced back to Zeus, had long given homes and patronage to Greece's most distinguished artists.
    • p.48
  • But Alexander was stressing his link with Achilles... Achilles was also a stirring Greek hero, useful for a Macedonian king whose Greek ancestry did not stop Greeks from calling him a barbarian.
    • p.60
  • No man, and only one hero, had been called invincible before him, and then only by a poet, but the hero was Heracles, ancestor of the Macedonian kings.
    • p.71
  • "War", Philip had announced, "was being declared against the Persians on behalf of the Greeks, to punish the barbarians for their lawless treatment of the old Greek temples".
    • p.92
  • Among the conservative Greek opinion there would be no regrets that Alexander the Greek leader was invading the barbarians.
    • p.101
  • To his ancestors (to a Persian's ancestors) Macedonians were only known as 'yona takabara', the 'Greeks who wear shields on their heads', an allusion to their broad-brimmed hats.
    • p.104
  • As for the hired Greeks in Persian service, thousands of the dead were to be buried, but the prisoners were bound in fetters and sent to hard labour in Macedonia, 'because they had fought as Greeks against Greeks, on behalf of barbarians, contrary to the common decrees of the Greek allies.
    • p.123
  • Alexander son of Philip and the Greeks, except the Spartans..., as Sparta did not consider it to be her fathers' practice to follow, but to lead.
    • p.123
  • In spirit, Alexander made a gesture to the Lydians' sensitivities, though his Greek crusade owed them nothing as they were not Greeks.
    • p.128
  • Alexander was not the first Greek to be honoured as a god for political favour...
    • p.131
  • Alexander was recognized as a son of Zeus after his visit.
    • p.201
  • It was the Delphi of the Greek East and as a Hellene, not as Pharaoh, Alexander would be curious...
    • p.204
  • Supported the belief that he was the Greek gos Zeus's son.
    • p.214
  • When his Macedonians mutinied at the end of their marching, they were said to have ridiculed him and told him to 'go fight alone with his father', meaning Zeus, not Philip.
    • p.216
  • The occasion was not lost on Alexander: at Susa, he sacrificed to Greek gods and held Greek gymnastic games...
    • p.253
  • In return he left behind Darius's mother, daughters and the son whom he had captured at Issus, and appointed teachers to teach them the Greek language.
    • p.254
  • Alexander was still the Greek avenger of Persian sacrilege who told his troops, it was said 'that Persepolis was the most hateful city in the world'. On the road there, he met with the families of Greeks who had deported to Persia by previous kings, and true to his slogan, he honoured them conspicuously, giving them money, five changes of clothing, farm animals, corn, a free passage home, and exemption from taxes and bureaucratic harassments.
    • p.256

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