Loading presentation...

Present Remotely

Send the link below via email or IM


Present to your audience

Start remote presentation

  • Invited audience members will follow you as you navigate and present
  • People invited to a presentation do not need a Prezi account
  • This link expires 10 minutes after you close the presentation
  • A maximum of 30 users can follow your presentation
  • Learn more about this feature in our knowledge base article

Do you really want to delete this prezi?

Neither you, nor the coeditors you shared it with will be able to recover it again.


Julius Caesar

Julius Caesar

Camilo Ruiz

on 19 January 2010

Comments (0)

Please log in to add your comment.

Report abuse

Transcript of Julius Caesar

Julius Caesar by Camilo Ruiz http://katyisd.ed.voicethread.com/share/834956/ Four things unite all humans: the desire for safety, the desire for love, the desire for power, and the desire for accomplishment. A core motivation of the human soul, these four cravings back every action taken by humans, and as a survivor of over 5 wars, a notorious womanizer, a Roman Dictator, and a famed military mastermind, Julius Caesar fits these specifications. Born on July 12, 100 B.C. in the poor Subura district of Rome, no one could have known that the young boy being nursed by his Plebian mother would one day rule the mighty Roman Republic. But the fate of young Julius Caesar would not be realized for at least another 50 years; and thus, his childhood was fairly average for a Roman. At seven years of age, Julius’ parents hired Marcus Antonius Gnipho who educated young Caesar on the “basics of Greek and Latin grammar, writing, and mathematics” (Freeman 23-24); at twelve years of age, Marcus Antonius “continued [Caesar’s] instruction in literature and especially poetry” (Freeman 24); at fifteen years of age, Caesar began studying rhetoric which would eventually save him from condemnation, mutiny, and even death. The educational stage of rhetoric, comprised the most important part of a young Roman’s education, and Caesar “memorized huge amounts of literature” while “[studying] speeches from the past” and “[composing] a persuasive speech in a historical situation” (Freeman 24). The Roman emphasis on public speaking catalyzed one of the greatest periods of rhetoric, and according to Carlos Felipe Mayorga, a lawyer, the Romans emphasized the key parts of what it takes to become a great orator. In an interview, Mr. Mayorga explained Romans evolved such great orators because “reading literature is the first medium to develop the ability to transmit ideas. A well structured and well written idea has a great power of conviction”, thus, the vast emphasis on literature in the Roman education sparked this great period CITATION. However, academics were only one of the two main parts of a Roman’s education. Physical Education constituted the other half of a Roman’s young development and the Roman’s used a “practical training for the rigors of war” by learning “to fight, ride a horse, and swim in the Tiber” (Freeman 25).. At 16 years of age, Caesar married Cornelia and his father died. At the same time, Sulla, a Roman general, marched and took the city of Rome, and he began the purging of all of his political enemies. Sulla was an optimate; Caesar was a populist. Sulla’s greatest enemy was Marius; Caesar was the nephew of Marius. At 16 years of age, recently married, and with only one parent, Caesar was thrown into this political bloodbath. However, when Sulla demanded that he “divorce Cinna’s daughter Cornelia… Caesar looked Sulla in the eye and refused” thus “defying a man who had ordered the murder of thousands” (Freeman 32). However brave, Caesar realized his perilous situation and he soon left for Asia Minor, where his victory at Mytilene granted him the Civic Crown at the age of 20. Upon return to Rome, Caesar put his rhetorical training to good use and prosecuted Gnaeus Cornelius Dolabella on charges of corruption. He “faced two of the leading defense counsels” and produced “a masterpiece of oratory”, but “lost the case” because the “senators were not about to convict so powerful a man of their own class” (Freeman 37). Although Caesar lost, his display of rhetorical skill impressed the Roman crowd and established him as a rising leader. After his brief foray into the world of Law, Cornelia gave birth to Julia, and Caesar left for the island of Rhodes at the age of 25 to further study rhetoric. However on the way there, “a group of Cicilians captured a vessel carrying [Julius Caesar]” and demanded 20 talents, a popular currency, for his release (Bonta 2). Even while held captive, Caesar’s boldness shone through as he “instructed them to ask for 50 talents instead” (Bonta 3). After the ransom was collected, Caesar returned to the pirates’ base, and crucified all of his previous captors. Caesar then returned to Rome. When Caesar turned 31, two tragedies struck him: the first, his aunt Julia died, and the second, his wife Cornelia died. However, instead of hosting a prudent funeral, as was customary, Caesar marched to the forum and praised Julia. For Cornelia, the woman he had risked death at the hands of Sulla for, he “once again mounted the rostra in the forum to deliver a eulogy” although “no one had ever delivered a public funeral speech for a young woman” (Freeman 53). Whether of sincere love or desire for attention, Caesar had now established himself in the eyes of the Roman public as a man with unwavering devotion to his family. Caesar’s boldest move, came in 63 B.C. when Caesar “declared himself a candidate for the office of pontifex maximus” (Freeman 67). However, Caesar was running against two of the eldest Senate members, and thus was only able to win the election through bribery, an acceptable way to win votes in the Roman world. Mr. Mayorga, though, finds the modern practice of bribery “detestable” and feels that “if it is the government that gives or receives a bribe, enough justification is presented for a reform in government” CITATION. Although Caesar won the election through profuse bribery, the boldness with which he approached his career served to define his character, and the luck which he held may in fact prove Virgil’s statement, “Fortune favors the bold”. Young Life, Social/Political Rise Caesar’s elaborate money spending had finally caught up to him, and as a result, he left for Further Spain to continue his military career. In Further Spain, he defeated the Lusitanian and Callaici bandits, and upon his return to Rome he was elected for a Triumph, “the highest honor Rome could grant a general” (Freeman 88). However, Caesar also wanted to run for Consul, and accepting one would void the other. But even though Julius knew that he would have many years to run for Consul again and he was not likely to be granted another Triumph, Caesar entered the city of Rome and declared his candidacy. By once again using profuse bribes, Caesar won the election. Nonetheless the Optimates of the Senate were determined to block any legislation Caesar would try to pass; therefore, Caesar “forged an informal, semi-secret political alliance with” Pompey and Crassus, a renowned military General and Rome’s wealthiest citizen (Bonta 12) CITATION. Caesar now used his power as Consul to propose a “land distribution bill” so well-written that no senator “could find a single criticism”, however, the optimates blocked the passage of the bill so that Caesar would not gain popularity (Freeman 96-97). According to Mr. Mayorga, the struggle for power within a Senate continues to this day, but he believes “the fault does not lie in a Congress with the power to approve or reject laws, but in the members’ execution of their power, without regard to the benefit (or often harm) done to the general public” CITATION. Angered by the Optimates unjustified block, Caesar passed the law through a Tribute of the Plebs. Further Spain military; Consulship In 59 B.C., Caesar’s triumvirate tie with Pompey paid off as Pompey helped him become the Consul of Gaul, modern day France, which had vast opportunity for military achievement. At this point, Caesar began his “Gallic campaigns, generally considered the greatest military feat since the conquests of Alexander the Great” (Bonta 13) CITATION. Although Caesar eventually conquered Gaul, he failed numerous times. Foremost among these occurred during his battle against the Helvetti. The Helvetti had camped at the base of a hill, and Caesar, realizing the advantage of attacking from above, ordered half of his troops to secretly move to the top of the hill at nighttime. Then, upon receiving a signal, he would lead the charge from downhill, effectively trapping the Helvetti. However, he never received the signal and assumed that his troops had been captured; when he realized that his troops had in fact been awaiting him to lead the charge, the Helvetti were long gone. Caesar had just let the opportunity for victory slip away because of poor communication, and he had thus failed as a commander. And according to General Valencia, “effective commanding is crucial… [as] it determines the victory or loss of a war” CITATION. However, Caesar did not let this loss discourage him as he eventually conquered all the Gallic tribes, including the Helvetti, the Belgians, the Bellovacci, the Nervii, and the Adacuti. However, Caesar’s success in Gaul caused jealousy in the triumvirate so in April 56 B.C., the triumvirate “recemented their political ties” with Caesar receiving “a 5-year extension” of his governorship and Pompey and Crassus receiving “a [joint] consulship” (“Gaius” 14). Soon after, Caesar briefly led his army to Germany and Britain to intimidate the tribes into supporting Rome. Although not a complete success, these excursions granted him extraordinary popularity because “for the first time Roman arms had advanced over the sea to conquer strange, new peoples” (“Gaius” 14) CITATION. The Gallic War However, in spite of Caesar’s growing popularity in the eyes of the Roman public, two events caused the dissolution of the Triumvirate: the death of Crassus while fighting against the mighty Parthian Empire and the death of Julia, Caesar’s daughter whom had married Pompey as a symbol of the Triumvirate bond. With the breaking of these two important bonds, and the growing power of both men, the Triumvirate broke apart with Pompey joining the Optimate cause while Caesar remained on the side of the Optimates. Nevertheless Caesar soon had to redirect his attention to Gaul, where the tribes had realized the state of turmoil in Rome and unified under Vercingetorix, a leader of the Arveni, in open rebellion against Roman Rule. But Caesar was still in Rome and the Gallic forces separated him from the rest of his legion stationed throughout Gaul, so he decided to cross directly over the Massif Central mountains, covered in snow, a feat which no one had yet performed. By catching the Gauls by surprise he was then able to meet with the remainder of his legions. At first, the war turned out disastrously for Caesar, with a loss at Gergovia and diminishing supplies along with previous allies joining Vercingetorix’s cause, Caesar’s chances of victory were slim. However, “Vercingetorix made his fatal mistake” by quartering all of his soldiers inside the citadel of Alesia, and here Caesar built two massive walls – one surrounding the city and the other surrounding his troops so that no Gallic relief armies could attack him (Freeman 226). However when Vercingetorix’s men attacked the wall, they seemed to be on the verge of capturing Caesar and his men, but Caesar realized this and “dashed to the front lines, clad in his crimson commander’s cloak, to inspire his men” (Freeman 226). The loyalty gained by Caesar, then, resulted from his treatment of his men, and General Valencia finds that “leading by example” and treating soldiers not as a superior“as an equal” results in their loyalty. After weeks of siege, Caesar finally captured the citadel and took Vercingetorix prisoner. After almost a decade of war, Caesar had finally secured the province of Gaul, a task which no man before him had succeeded in doing. Vercingetorix Uprising But in 50 B.C, “his five year extended consulship expired, and the Senate ordered Caesar to disband his army and return to Rome” (Bonta 20) CITATION. But Caesar knew that disbanding his forces would mean the return to Rome as a private citizen, and he would thus lose the immunity granted to him as a governor, and because of the mounting opposition to him in Rome, he knew this would mean the end of his career. So he used his political connections in Rome to propose laws allowing him to run for Consul as soon as his Governorship ended so that he would maintain his immunity to imprisonment, but the Optimates of the Senate, eager to persecute Caesar for his offenses against tradition, blocked all of these propositions. So he could either obey the Senate, lay down his command, and spend the rest of his life fighting the Optimates, or he could defy the Senate, and attack Rome. He realized that the Gallic War had gained him vast support, and with this in mind and his tenth legion at his back, in 49 B.C., Caesar crossed the Rubicon River and marched toward Rome. The Senate quickly declared Caesar as an enemy to Rome and gave Pompey full authority to defend the Roman Republic. “Pompey quickly decided to abandon Italy to Caesar and fell back to the East” and Caesar then “secured his position in Italy and Gaul” (“Gaius” 24). The first main battle occurred at Dyrrachium, a Greek city, where Pompey’s military skill’s won. And fueled by the prospect of defeating Caesar, the Optimates then pressured Pompey into attacking Caesar at Pharsalus, the second main battle of the Civil War. The Senators seemed so confident of victory because of Pompey’s “brilliant, innovative, and sure to succeed” plan where his cavalry would sweep around Caesar’s men, yet, Caesar realized a flaw in his plan – if Caesar could hold off the cavalry, he would win (Freeman 280). He then positioned his tenth legion to face the cavalry, and won the battle at Pharsalus, the major turning point of the Civil War. However, Pompey had managed to escape East with many of the Senators, and the remaining Senators joined Caesar’s forces as he granted them clemency. Pompey planned to regroup and strengthen his forces in Egypt, but when he arrived in Egypt, two of the King’s advisors, Achillas and Septimius wished to earn Caesar’s favor, and thus murdered Pompey. Civil War Caesar was outraged at the murder of Pompey as he arrived in Egypt as he no longer had the opportunity “to put his self-serving magnanimity on display” while pardoning his respected colleague and gifted enemy (Bonta 25). While in Egypt, Caesar met Cleopatra, whose beauty captivated him into having an affair, although he remained married to Calpurnia. He also supported Cleopatra in a civil war which had split her rule with her brother, and after a bloody campaign of urban warfare, Caesar emerged victorious, granting Cleopatra the coveted title of Egyptian Queen. Later that year, 47 B.C., Cleopatra gave birth to Caesar’s only son, Caesarion. Upon leaving Egypt, he put down a revolt in Africa, and pardoned Cassius, the same man who would one day lead the conspiracy to assassinate him. Egypt/Africa Upon Returning to Rome after putting down the African revolt, Caesar was granted 4 Triumphs, the greatest military honor that Rome could bestow upon a general, for his victories in Asia Minor, Egypt, Gaul, and Africa. However, the blatant displays of the deaths of Cato, which constituted a major part of his Triumphs, marked the beginning of his downfall because although the Roman crowd generally supported Caesar, they could not bear to see the ridiculement of Cato, a man who had held fast to his morals even to his death, and thus “through his own foolish pride, Caesar turned Cato into a martyr” (Freeman 330). The Senators now gave Caesar the title of dictator for ten years, and with his new found power, Caesar instituted a variety of reforms meant to benefit the public including: extending citizenship to all loyal provinces of Rome, the beginning of a Roman library, Roman Improvement projects, and arguable the most lasting, the reformation of the Calendar. Through his power as pontifex maximus, Caesar “[converted] Rome to a solar calendar” and developed the calendar used today (Freeman 339). In spite of all of his reforms, opposition to Caesar was mounting, especially from Senators who realized that he was destroying the Roman Republic by limiting the power of Senators and increasing the power of the common people. These Senators became further outraged with the divine honors that the Senate continued bestowing upon Caesar as he was given “the titles liberator and imperator”, “a gold chair was built for his pleasure”, “the month of his birth… was renamed Julius in his honor – hence our modern July” and most importantly, “he was named dictator for life” (Freeman 346). Mr. Mayorga believes that a government led by a dictator often fails because the “concentration of power becomes used by the individual for his person benefit rather than for the benefit of the general population”, and although not necessarily true of Julius Caesar, this logic provided sufficient justification for a group of conspiring Senators to murder Julius Caesar. Return to Rome, Honors, and Reformation The Ides of March Caesar’s growing dictatorial power had inflamed the Senators to the point where they “decided that only drastic action could restore the republic”, so “led by Marcus Junius Brutus and Gaius Longus Cassius”, both of whom had been pardoned by Caesar during the Civil War, a group of Senators “formed a conspiracy to assassinate Julius Caesar” on the Ides of March, 44 B.C. (Bonta 31). Although Caesar was given ample warning of the assassination plot through omens and even a direct warning from a soothsayer named Spurinna, he ignored these warnings out of pride or ignorance, and at the base of Pompey’s theatre, the conspiring Senators murdered the great, Julius Caesar; and with his death, “Rome plunged into 13 years of civil war” thus marking the end of the Roman Republic (“Gaius” 31) CITATION.
Full transcript