LEGENDS: “The 3 last wishes of Alexander the Great.”( “Los 3 últimos deseos de Alejandro Magno el Grande.”)



As the legend goes, when Alexander the Great was returning home after his many conquests he fell seriously ill. It was then that Alexander realized that in the face of death, his great army and many kingdoms, all his conquests and wealth were worthless. He knew that he would not be able to reach his homeland and see his family to say goodbye.

On his death bed, Alexander summoned his generals and told them his three ultimate wishes:

1.  The best doctors should carry his coffin

2.  The wealth he has accumulated (money, gold, precious stones) should be scattered along the procession to the cemetery, and

3.  His hands should be let loose, hanging outside the coffin for all to see.

One of his generals who was surprised by these unusual requests asked Alexander to explain.

Here is what Alexander the Great had to say:

1.  I want the best doctors to carry my coffin to demonstrate that, in the face of death, even the best doctors in the world have no power to heal.

2.  I want the road to be covered with my treasure so that everybody sees that material wealth acquired on earth, stays on earth.

3.  I want my hands to swing in the wind, so that people understand that we come to this world empty handed and we leave this world empty handed after the most precious treasure of all is exhausted, and that is TIME.



  •  Your HEALTH is priceless and it’s in your own hands, take care of it..
  • WEALTH is only meaningful if you can share and enjoy it while you are still alive. What you do for yourself, dies with you. But what you do for others will live for ever.
  • TIME is our most precious treasure because it is LIMITED.  We can produce more wealth, but we cannot produce more time. When we give someone our time, we actually give a portion of our life that we will never take back. Our time is our life.

May you have plenty of TIME and may you have the wisdom to use it wisely!


Funerals guide Blog. 2016. The last wishes of Alexander the great. [ONLINE] Available at: http://blog.funeralguide.co.za/last-wishes-alexander-Great. [Accessed 2 June 2016].

Source of legend unverified.

Los tres últimos  deseos de Alejandro Magno, El Grande.

Encontrándose al borde de la muerte, Alejandro convocó a sus generales y les comunicó sus tres últimos deseos:

  • Que su ataúd fuese llevado en hombros y transportado por los propios médicos de la época.
  • Que los tesoros que había conquistado (plata, oro, piedras preciosas… ), fueran esparcidos por el camino hasta su tumba, y…
  • Que sus manos quedaran balanceándose en el aire, fuera del ataúd, y a la vista de todos.

Uno de sus generales, asombrado por tan insólitos deseos, le preguntó a Alejandro cuáles eran sus razones.

Alejandro contestó al general:

  • Quiero que los más eminentes médicos carguen mi ataúd para así mostrar que ellos no tienen, ante la muerte, el poder de curar.
  • Quiero que el suelo sea cubierto por mis tesoros para que todos puedan ver que los bienes materiales aquí conquistados, aquí permanecen.
  • Quiero que mis manos se balanceen al viento, para que las personas puedan ver que vinimos con las manos vacías, y con las manos vacías partimos.


  • Tu SALUD es invalorable, y esta en tus manos: cuidala.
  • La RIQUEZA solo es importante si la compartes y la disfrutas mientras tienes vida. LO que haces para ti mismo, se muere contigo, pero lo que haces por otros vive para siempre.
  • El TIEMPO es uno de los mas preciados tesoros pues es LIMITADO. Podemos producir mas riquezas, pero no podemos producir mas tiempo. Cuando le dedicamos a alguien nuestro tiempo le estamos dando una porcion de nuestras vidas que nunca mas volvera a nosotros. Nuestro tiempo es nuestra vida.

Que tengas tiempo suficiente y que lo uses sabiamente!

Marble portrait of Alexander the Great. Hellenistic Greek, 2nd-1st CE. Said to be from Alexandria, Egypt. H. 37 cm. GR 1872,0515.1.



8 Comments Add yours

  1. Hi,

    I wanted to post this story, as it offers valuable lessons, something for retirees and senior citizens to reflect on during their sunset years. However, I couldn’t seem to find more reliable sources apart from the one that you provided. The more reputable sites that I have come across during my search, including http://www.livius.org/aj-al/alexander/alexander_t28.html and http://www.eyewitnesstohistory.com/alexanderdeath.htm, do not make any mention of the 3 last wishes.

    But whether the story is verified or not, the lessons gleaned from it are no less valuable. Might just need to make a note of its unverified source.


    1. Thank you for visiting my blog and for your feedback.You are right, the lessons are very valuable indeed. As per your suggestion I added a note regarding the unverified source of the story.


  2. LindaP says:

    Great lessons to be learned!


  3. WorldCitizen says:

    Every time I read about this great man, I get more and more fascinated by his courage, wisdom and fearless soul. This was so interesting to read, thank you.


    1. Oh thank you so much for your comment! I am so pleased to hear your comment! It certainly makes us think about the things that truly matter… 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. WorldCitizen says:

        Indeed. Its so unfortunate that we only have few of those in these modern days.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. I agree with you, these are very challenging and difficult times for humanity, there are too many things that keep people distracted and preoccupied, and it’s easier to lose focus of the things that matter the most in life…

          Liked by 1 person

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