Julius Caesar- Roman political and military leader; became dictator for life in 44 B.C.; greatly improved the Roman government; was murdered by Roman senators because of his great power

Early Life

Julius Caesar was born in Rome on July 12th or 13th, 100 B.C., son of Gaius Caesar and Aurelia. His family was far from rich even though it descended from Roman aristocrats. While he was only 16, his father died. After this, he remained close to his mother. Rome during Caesar's youth was unstable. It seemed unable to handle its size and influence. He married Cornelia, the daughter of a noble. This caused Rome's dictator, Sulla, to be drawn to him and threatened him that he'd lose his land if he didn't divorce with her. Caesar refused to divorce and hid in the army. After the death of Sulla, he traveled to Rhodes to study philosophy and was captured by pirates. He manipulated the pirates and contacted the Roman army, and they saved him. 

The Rise of Julius Caesar

When Rome dissolved into a civil war, Julius Caesar arose as a smart leader, eager for power. From 58 B.C. to 51 B.C. he led his army and conquered Gaul. Caesar's leadership gave him loyalty from his troops. He enslaved and exiled millions of Gauls. He returned to Rome with his army to seize power. War broke out between Caesar and the senate. In 48 B.C., he won the war and became dictator of Rome. 

The Death of Julius Caesar

For four years, Julius Caesar took over important public offices. In 45 B.C., Julius Caesar became the only consul. And in 44 B.C., he declared himself dictator for life. Caesar took many useful steps organize the government. But to many senators, it seemed that Rome had a king once again. On March 15, 44 B.C., Julius Caesar attended a meeting of the senate. His wife urged him not to go, fearing danger. Caesar insisted on going. At the meeting, the senators circled Julius Caesar. All of a sudden, they pulled out knives and stabbed him to death. Caesar was a great leader, although many Romans believed he was too strong and powerful, and he gathered his strength and power too fast. 

Fun Fact

The Father of Leap Year: The Romans used to use a calendar system based on the lunar cycle, which was 355 days. This system was 10 and one fourth days short of the Earth's complete revolution around the Sun. After Julius Caesar consulted with the astronomer Sosigenes, Caesar implemented a new system called the Julian calendar, which went in effect in 45 B.C. The Julian calendar was made up of 365 days and it was intended to be in sync with the solar cycle. Because the actual revolution around the Sun took 365 and a fourth days long, Caesar added a day every four years called a leap day, and a year with a leap day would be called a leap year. 

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Julius Caesar

by christopherbrennan22


Public - 5/23/16, 4:04 PM