Are there any more historical examples of nobodys rising to the absolute top...

SomethingNew
SomethingNew

Seleucus was a literal nobody serving in Alexander the Great's army
managed to found one of the largest empires in the world at the time

Are there any more historical examples of nobodys rising to the absolute top like this?

All urls found in this thread:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Georgian_Affair
Skullbone
Skullbone

toyotomi hideyoshi, nappy, genghis

TalkBomber
TalkBomber

hitler

farquit
farquit

@TalkBomber
distinguished war veteran
popular politician and writer

Sure he was a bum before the war but after that things were pretty easy for him

Playboyize
Playboyize

@SomethingNew
John Churchill, first duke of Marlborough
Andrew Carnegie
Aristoteles Onassis

RumChicken
RumChicken

@farquit
Distinguished
delivered mail/orders
Pick one. He literally was captured the one time he went over the trenches.

JunkTop
JunkTop

@farquit
distinguished war veteran
wat. he was no more distinguished than any other braver than average soldier, of which there were tens of thousands. his being a veteran had very little factor in his name recognition or his rise to power. He didn't become a "veteran," anyway, until around two years after the war, during which he was a paid police spy and an astro-turfed demogogue whose party received a stipend from local military and police forces.
popular politician and writer
mein kampf sold poorly in the first years of its publication. hitler even wrote a second volume but he decided in consultation with others that it wasn't worth publishing for fear that it would compete for sales with the first volume, of which was already doing badly.

tl;dr you're talking out your ass

PurpleCharger
PurpleCharger

@farquit
@farquit

Hitler was very much a nobody who unfortunately became somebody of immense historical importance. Stalin also certainly qualifies.

GoogleCat
GoogleCat

@SomethingNew
Bolivar.

Need_TLC
Need_TLC

@SomethingNew
seleucus sort of reminds me of kurt douglas. anyone else see the resemblance?

Firespawn
Firespawn

@Need_TLC
Holy shit perfect choice to play Seleucus in the inevitable biopic too bad he's 100 now

Spamalot
Spamalot

@RumChicken

Pretty sure he captured a bunch of British soldiers by himself armed with just a handgun.

happy_sad
happy_sad

@Firespawn
at least he got to play spartacus

haveahappyday
haveahappyday

@Spamalot
i think thats a apocryphal story

lostmypassword
lostmypassword

@Firespawn
@happy_sad
Didn't Seleucus live to a ridiculous age and even rode into battle when he was in his 80s?

Techpill
Techpill

@lostmypassword
Yeah he was either 77 or 78 and was about to launch a conquest of Thrace and Macedon but he got assassinated by Ptolemy's reject son

PackManBrainlure
PackManBrainlure

@Techpill
oh ok

Sharpcharm
Sharpcharm

@SomethingNew
Sargon of Akkad. The real one.

Skullbone
Skullbone

@lostmypassword
you might be thinking of Antigonus Monopthalmus

GoogleCat
GoogleCat

Nader Shah

StrangeWizard
StrangeWizard

@TechHater
His husband and his father in law too. They were filthy illyrian peasants before travelling to the capital searching for the Constantinopolitan dream. Emperor Justin even died without having learned how to write and read.

Raving_Cute
Raving_Cute

wasn't there a Byzantine emperor who started off as a literal nobody working in a farm until he was sent to live with his uncle, and worked his way up to palace guard and then emperor?

Harmless_Venom
Harmless_Venom

@SomethingNew
Seleucus Nicator was Satrapy of Babylon, a future center for Alexander's empire. So I wouldn't call him "nobody".

MPmaster
MPmaster

@StrangeWizard
Constantinopolitan dream
I fucking love this term now

Evil_kitten
Evil_kitten

@StrangeWizard
so justinian was albanian :^)?

farquit
farquit

@MPmaster
not really
Constantinople is dead
It's Istanbul now wh*Te boys

5mileys
5mileys

@Raving_Cute
I don't know if he was sent to live with his uncle, but the rest is basically Justin as I said previously. Justin was the uncle of Justinian who also went from nobody to the most famous byzantine emperor, maybe you mixed the two guys.

takes2long
takes2long

@Raving_Cute
basil 1

literally started life as like an illiterate horse handler that could barely speak greek and worked his way up to emperor

askme
askme

@Evil_kitten
Even worst, he was from modern FYROM. He was a latin though.

iluvmen
iluvmen

@farquit
This meme is lamer every day

Inmate
Inmate

@5mileys
@takes2long
i'm probably mixing up multiple emperors from what it looks like, thanks for replying, i love finding new history shit to read about

lostmypassword
lostmypassword

@iluvmen
what meme?

TreeEater
TreeEater

@lostmypassword
the asterisk probably
it was funny on /int/ but it got overplayed faster than a redditer spamming images from /b/ over here

viagrandad
viagrandad

@RumChicken
@JunkTop
Prior to his promotion he fought in a particularly vicious battle af Ypres only 16% of his company managed to come out of it in fighting condition.

No other world leader at that time had been in anything close to that except arguably Churchill.

During the war, Hitler served in France and Belgium in the 16th Bavarian Reserve Regiment. He was an infantryman in the 1st Company during the First Battle of Ypres (October 1914), which is remembered in Germany as the Kindermord bei Ypern (Massacre of the Innocents) because approximately 40,000 men (between a third and a half) of nine newly enlisted infantry divisions became casualties in 20 days. Hitler's regiment entered the battle with 3,600 men and at its end mustered 611.[5] The regimental commander was killed and thereafter they were known as the Regiment List in his honor. By December, Hitler's own company of 250 was reduced to 42.

Booteefool
Booteefool

@StrangeWizard
his husband

SomethingNew
SomethingNew

@viagrandad
you left out an important detail.... see pic related

cum2soon
cum2soon

@SomethingNew
the casualties were from friendly fire

GoogleCat
GoogleCat

@PurpleCharger
Stalin also certainly qualifies.

Yeah Stalin was dirt poor peasant who attended priestly seminar for a while, did bank robberies for commies and was hated by the bolshevik party elite for not being urban elite/intelligentsia. Even his position as party secretary didn't merit seeing him as anyone really important.

Deadlyinx
Deadlyinx

Jean-Baptiste Jules Bernadotte rose from a mere middle class civilian to a marshal of France before becoming king of Sweden. His dynasty still holds the throne.

Skullbone
Skullbone

@SomethingNew
Everybody is a nobody until they become somebody.

SniperWish
SniperWish

King David, although that's up for debate

BlogWobbles
BlogWobbles

@Skullbone
You're nobody till somebody kills you

Stupidasole
Stupidasole

And conquered pretty much everything.

Burnblaze
Burnblaze

@Harmless_Venom
But he was only appointed as satrap because he happened to be in the right place at the right time and helped assassinate Perdiccas

Spazyfool
Spazyfool

@SomethingNew
literal nobody
He was literally a general

Illusionz
Illusionz

Diocletian was of lowly status, rose through the military ranks and ended up becoming Roman Emperor. Not just any emperor either but he introduced the tetrarchy which arguably led to the split into the Easter and Western Roman Empire a few hundred years down the road.

Crazy_Nice
Crazy_Nice

@SomethingNew
Alexander
the Great

When will this meme end?

farquit
farquit

@SomethingNew
Zhu Yuanzhang.
Peasant-turned emperor.

girlDog
girlDog

@GoogleCat
@GoogleCat
his position as party secretary didn't merit seeing him as anyone really important.
wat, no. general secretary was a really important position, even if other people didn't recognize it as such. it gave him the power over party appointments so he essentially controled the party from the moment he got the position. also, Lenin valued Stalin pretty highly, and even favored him for succession before this caused a split between them and Lenin used the last of his energy to make sure he didn't take control

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Georgian_Affair

Lord_Tryzalot
Lord_Tryzalot

richard nixon

ZeroReborn
ZeroReborn

@Spamalot
I remember my grandfather telling me how he captured 14 german soldiers with a handgun in WWI. Coincidence?

FastChef
FastChef

@Raving_Cute
That's a good number of Roman and Byzantine emperors. Diocletian was originally a peasant from Dalmatia called Diocles. He changed his name to Diocletianus to disguise his bumpkin origins.

MPmaster
MPmaster

@Stupidasole
He didnt conquer aztecs tho
Lmao fucking lame whitebois

VisualMaster
VisualMaster

@Crazy_Nice
REEEEEEEE WHY ISN'T THERE ANY WOMEN WITH THAT TITLE FUCKING PATRIARCHY
Kinda liked him until that episode

SniperWish
SniperWish

@VisualMaster

WHY ISN'T THERE ANY WOMEN WITH THAT TITLE

I sure hope he didn't actually say that because Catherine the Great springs to mind almost immediately.

CodeBuns
CodeBuns

@Sharpcharm
The greatest philosopher/thinker of our time.

GoogleCat
GoogleCat

@Lord_Tryzalot
this

Harmless_Venom
Harmless_Venom

Nikita Khrushchev was literally born a illiterate peasant.

Sir_Gallonhead
Sir_Gallonhead

@SomethingNew
Tito, a locksmith from a poor rural family, ended up ruling a nation of 20 million people comprised of 3 major religions, 3 languages and several ethnic groups as if he was royalty
I don't like the guy, but credit where credit is due

TalkBomber
TalkBomber

Subutai, one of Genghis and Ogedei's primary generals, was born to literal nobody peasants, and by mongol steppe standards he held no status in any clan, or even being a warrior.

"He directed more than twenty campaigns in which he conquered thirty-two nations and won sixty-five pitched battles, during which he conquered or overran more territory than any other commander in history. He gained victory by means of imaginative and sophisticated strategies and routinely coordinated movements of armies that were hundreds of kilometers away from each other. He is also remembered for devising the campaign that destroyed the armies of Hungary and Poland within two days of each other, by forces over five hundred kilometers apart."

Literal underrated military genius who didn't drop a battle from China to Poland.

hairygrape
hairygrape

@cum2soon
The jews did it.

BinaryMan
BinaryMan

@lostmypassword

70s I believe. But still it's pretty badass. But a lot of the successor generals were. Antigonos was in his 80s when he died in battle, Lycimachus was a peer of Seleukos of died days before him.

massdebater
massdebater

@Burnblaze

Also he was a part of the pseudo-royalty of Orestis(?) dynasty which Perdiccas and Leonatus were a part of. While this might not seem important these days, the Out-Kingdoms of Orestis and Lyncestis(?) were incredibly important in the stability of Macedon during Philip's entire reign and Alexander's early reign. Sure, due to what Alexander did they became far less important, especially as Alexander didn't give a fuck about Macedonian nobility and eliminated it as much as he could during his lifetime, but it was an incredibly important and complicated factor during his early reign.

Regardless of whether one subscribes the theory that Alexander was involved in Philip's assassination or not the Out Kingdoms were very much viewed by propaganda at the time as being involved in that assassination, and Philip's marriage to Cleopatra Eurydike was something of an affront to those Out Kingdom nobles as she was a more "central" blue-blooded Macedonian as were Attalus and Parmenion.

idontknow
idontknow

@Illusionz
but he introduced the tetrarchy which arguably led to the split into the Easter and Western Roman Empire a few hundred years down the road.

This in untrue, the tetrarchy barely lasted longer than Diocletian.

SniperGod
SniperGod

@GoogleCat
Enlighten me user

What happened?

Crazy_Nice
Crazy_Nice

@Harmless_Venom
Most peasants are born illiterate.

Evilember
Evilember

@idontknow
tetrarchy barely lasted longer than Diocletian.

I think he meant that the institution of the tetrarchy made it acceptable to emperors to split the empire up among multiple rulers.

SniperGod
SniperGod

@SniperGod
One of the biggest MADMAN in history.

Booteefool
Booteefool

Wasn't Ramses II a normal peasant until the pharaoh adopted him as a teenager?

Spamalot
Spamalot

@Harmless_Venom

Name one person that was born literate

Deadlyinx
Deadlyinx

@TalkBomber
Subutai is the greatest general of all time.

Techpill
Techpill

@Spamalot
Me

TalkBomber
TalkBomber

@massdebater
Why was it a pseudo dynasty? Why were they important to stability of macedon? Do you mean that seleucus was part of a faction of nobles that were angry at having lost power during the conquest and having less of a say in policy than they used to? That alexander possibly ised them (or at least benefitted) from their killing his father?

StonedTime
StonedTime

@SomethingNew
literally nobody
one of Alexander's generals

nigga they were all top tier generals in their own right.

FastChef
FastChef

@SomethingNew
Diocletian's father was a slave, Justinian's father was an illiterate peasant

Lunatick
Lunatick

Winston Churchill

Booteefool
Booteefool

@Crazy_Nice

Go eat your semen cereal faggot

CodeBuns
CodeBuns

@TalkBomber

Originally Macedon essentially just included Central Macedon under the Argead Dynasty (the bloodline of Philip and Alexander). However central Macedon began to expand and ended up taking Lyncestis and Orestis which had previously been independent. There was always a level of resentment by the Lyncestian and Orestian nobles. The murderer of Philip, Pausanias was a member of the Orestis nobility, as was Perdiccas, and Seleukos.

The first people to publicly put their support behind Alexander was Alexander of Lyncestis, whom was later executed by Alexander for either an attempted plot against Alexander, or proof of his involvement in Philip's murder.

I say pseudo-dynasty because the Out-Kingdom nobles had not been monarchs for quite some time. And during Philip's marriage to Cleopatra Eurydike they were discontent for having less power at the court in Pella than they had while Olympias had been queen and Alexander the unquestionable heir-apparent. Many of Alexander's close friends were from the Out Kingdoms rather than the more blue blooded Macedonian nobility.

Raving_Cute
Raving_Cute

@CodeBuns
thanks for the answer, that clears up a lot in my head. but was what i said about the conquest true? that they hoped to benefit from it somehow and that alexander had snubbed them? or did the in fact benefit from the conquest and alexander's death allowed them arrogate even more power to themselves?

cum2soon
cum2soon

@SomethingNew
Dime and a dozen in China. But the most notable were Liu Bang and Zhu Yuanzhang.

Liu Bang was a homeless bandit who founded one of China's greatest imperial dynasties and its longest lasting: the Han

Zhu Yuanzhang a.k.a Emperor Hongwu was a homeless peasant who ended up founding the Ming Dynasty

BinaryMan
BinaryMan

@Raving_Cute
hat they hoped to benefit from it somehow and that alexander had snubbed them? or did the in fact benefit from the conquest and alexander's death allowed them arrogate even more power to themselves?

They both did and didn't benefit from Alexander being the new King. They benefitted in the initial short term with the removal of Attalus and Cleopatra Eurydike, but Parmenion reasserted himself (it was he who killed Attalus for Alexander thus engraciating himself with the new monarch), and then with Alexander of Lyncestis' death and Parmenion's control of most of Alexander's army (as well as Antipater being the regent of Macedon) But later on Parmenion would die and Perdikkas became the second man in Alexander's empire after the death of Hephaestion. After Perdikkas' death Seleukos would end up ruling the lion's share of Alexander's conquests. So in the long run I'd say it worked out for them.

Techpill
Techpill

@SomethingNew
Baibars

Slave captured from the Caucasus by Bulgars, sold to Syrians, and then an Egyptian aristocrat. Became bodyguard to a prominent mamluk, then captain of the mamluks, then sultan of egypt.

Ignoramus
Ignoramus

The late Roman Empire may be full of these types, considering how vital the meritocratic military was to the Imperial throne, but I think of all the personalities to rise to dominance, Flavius Stilicho was the most meteoric.
Born to a literally who Vandal soldier and a literally who Roman woman. Enlisted in the Roman army. Through pure service he was constantly promoted. After a successful negotiation with thew Sassanid emperor, he was elevated to master of horse and later supreme commander. After the death of Theodosius, he governed in the stead of Western Emperor Honorius. Fought multiple wars against the invading Barbarian kingdoms and Roman usurpers until his execution by Rome's elites.

idontknow
idontknow

@Techpill
wtf is with egypt being ruled by balkan soldiers. muhammed ali comes to mind

hairygrape
hairygrape

@BinaryMan
interesting, thanks again for answering

Evilember
Evilember

@Stupidasole
This. He also utilized meritocracy over birthright heavily in his military strategy, which proved absurdly successful. Albeit, not without obstacles. Not obstacles he couldn't overcome to be the most successful conqueror the world has ever known, though.

FastChef
FastChef

@idontknow
More like wtf is with the balkans and being taken by muslims as slaves

JunkTop
JunkTop

@hairygrape

No problem. The history of the Macedonian court is actually really fascinating and usually isn't given much if any notice by historians speaking about Alexander despite the fact that when one looks through Alexander's reign the struggle between the Central Macedonians and Out Kingdoms Macedonians remains important throughout Alexander's reign.

RavySnake
RavySnake

@Lord_Tryzalot
Don't forget LBJ too

BinaryMan
BinaryMan

@Ignoramus
""civilised"" Romans started murdering foederati/Germanic women and children after Stilicho's death
People like to shitpost about muh savage Germanics destroying the Roman Empire but they really did everything they could to deserve it.

GoogleCat
GoogleCat

@SniperGod
He was basically a Mount and Blade character

born son of an irrelevant coat-maker in the frontier
when he's 13 dad dies, Nader to feed family gathering sticks for firewood
when 17 he and his mom are captured and taken as slaves by an uzbek raid
mom dies, Nader eventually escapes and becomes a mountain bandit withwith his friends
tired of that shit he becomes a courier for a nobleman, sends messages between his region and the capital
kills the other courier to be the only one, convinces the Shah to give him gifts instead of punishment
but his boss is mad and his daughter hot, so Nader flees to the caspian nd becomes a bandit again after killing the boss and taking the daughter
meanwhile the ruling dynasty is collapsing, afghan rebels take the capital while russians and turks invade
Nader's band joins the royal army, eventually gets to command all the troops after exposing the previous commander as a traitor to the Shah
He recaptures all Persia, saves dynasty from collapsing
but decided that the sissy shah isn't better than him so he usurps the throne, puts end to the dynasty and proclaims himself Nader Shah
He defeats afghans and the ottomans, reconquers lost parts of the caucasus and central asia and even goes beyond, he attacks and sacks Delhi
no empire in Iran has been that large or strong for centuries

tl;dr From gathering sticks to Napoleon of the East.

PackManBrainlure
PackManBrainlure

@BinaryMan
More like the german "refugees" were already invading the land by mass immigration and Stilicho was one of them. No exceptional individual could be spared, germans had to be removed. The east did this and survived. The west allowed men like stilicho to thrive for too much time and died.

TalkBomber
TalkBomber

@Ignoramus
Aetius also went from half barbarian hunnic hostage to keeping the west together for 20 years only to be murdered by his bitch of an emperor

VisualMaster
VisualMaster

@PackManBrainlure
The east had plenty of Germanic and even Hunnic peoples moving around its borders, they just didn't have the bad fortune of having the Rhine frontier.

DeathDog
DeathDog

@PackManBrainlure
The west allowed men like stilicho to thrive for too much time and died.
Stilicho was one of the few people holding Rome together towards the end, you hateful idiot.

TreeEater
TreeEater

@VisualMaster
Not in positions of power after they got rid of Aspar.

@DeathDog
When his people has already done the damage, it's irrelevant what he did. He should have been humble and stayed away from power.

girlDog
girlDog

@TreeEater
It doesn't matter what positions they were in, they still were there. Not to mention, of course, that Aspar was influential in the court of the east for almost 20 years with no major degradement in its status. The fall of the West had to do with a healthy amount of bad fortune and terrible decision making, often on the parts of the Romans; it's what led to both sacks of Rome and the loss of North Africa and Britain. If Stilicho were still in power, it's likely that the 410 sack wouldn't have occurred

Nude_Bikergirl
Nude_Bikergirl

@Playboyize
Duke
A nobody?

CouchChiller
CouchChiller

@VisualMaster
mfw he said pants were invented by the patriarchy to suppress women.

JunkTop
JunkTop

@Evilember
The seeds for that were put in place long before him. Marcus and Lucius come to mind, as with the fact that the east was ruled independently during the crisis of the 3rd century

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