Kailyn MankeyEnglish 1302 HA8January 25, 2018 Julius CaesarGenerally, when someone thinks of a hero, they think of an incredible person who put others before themselves and save the day.
But with different definitions, different people can qualify as a hero. Julius Caesar may be called a hero if we define the term as a person who, endowed with extraordinary qualities of heart and mind (courage, intelligence, and zest) sets out to achieve a near-impossible goal (to build a roman empire) and succeeds in the face of serious opposition (multiple other countries fighting against him defending Rome).Caesar was born in July, 100 BC into a political family. By 73BC he is elected Pontifex and is well liked by most of the Romans. In 63BC, he is elected Pontifex Maximus, at the young age of 40, Caesar was elected to the Consul. He worked closely with two of Rome’s leading figures, Pompey the Great and Crassus.
The senatorial autocracy that ruled Rome was proving inadequate to deal with these new confrontations. The Senate could not control the armies and the generals and they were not willing to listen to the appeals of the Italian allies for equal citizenship and of the colonies for justice. The system also had no real answers for the growth of an urban lower class and the mass importation of slaves. Caesar was the first Roman emperor and successor emperors adopted his name during their rule.
It became a title rather than a name. Julius Caesar was considered the ruler of Rome for four years at the most. His assassination was evidence that his rule was far less than total (Watkins, 27) . The main military campaigns of Julius Caesar were mostly the Gallic War (58 BC-51 BC) and Caesar’s civil war (50 BC-45 BC). The Gallic War mainly took place in what is now France. Caesar took over Germany and Helvetti when they threatened France. After that he invaded Britain after crossing the Rhine, in 55 and 54 BC, although he made little headway in winning.
This helped his protect his ally, France (Watkins, 48). The Gallic War ended with complete Roman victory at the Battle of Alesia. This was followed by the civil war, when the current Roman ruler, Crassus died, Julius Caesar and Pompey the Great began fighting and started a Roman Civil War. During that time Caesar drove his rivals to Greece and defeated them there. Caesar won that war, and after that, he then went into Egypt, where he crushed the Egyptian pharaoh and he made Cleopatra the ruler of Egypt. They had a son together named, He finished off his campaign of Roman opponents in Africa and Hispania. By 45 BC Julius Caesar named himself Rome’s dictator for life. Julius Caesar wanted Rome to be the capital of much of the world.
He was a great military hero. He successfully led a Roman army for 9 years in France. He was generous to his soldiers. He took care of them during the many years of war. His soldiers were very loyal to Caesar. They knew he kept them alive and they trusted him completely.
Caesar used the problems and hardships of the period to create his own supreme political and military power.He remade the Roman Senate and local governments. He wanted to reorganize them to be more self-sufficient, to establish local government in Italy as the beginning of a world-wide system of free municipalities.
He wanted to expand liberties and have a universal Roman nation, not a city with servants and granted citizenship to many more foreigners who he felt worthy to be Roman. Caesar would appoint the provincial governors and would be responsible for their honesty and competence. He wanted to rebuild the empire on a basis of reason and humanity. During Caesar’s rule, he accomplished many things, including bringing stability back to Rome. He lowered taxes, making life easier for the poor. He began new colonies in and he gave people land to farm in the colonies. Caesar gave work to other people to build temples and public buildings. Caesar also allowed all Romans to enjoy his private gardens.
The people of Rome were as loyal to Caesar as his army had been. They knew he was working for their common good. Caesar was clearly a threat to democracy in Rome.
The Senators decided to stop Caesar before he tried to take over the government. Caesar made himself a dictator for a period of 10 years, and then a dictator for life. He also made laws that gave him powers to appoint the other magistrates in the Rome.
So although he never used the word king, he was effectively one. That made many of the republican adherents in the senate very angry. Also, the people of the countries that he concurred like the Gauls prompted a major uprising in the winter of 54–53 BC, when the tribes of north-eastern Gaul rose in arms under their leader Ambiorix. Fifteen Roman cohorts were wiped out at Atuatuca Tungrorum and a garrison commanded by Quintus Tullius Cicero narrowly survived after being relieved by Caesar in the nick of time. The rest of 53 BC was occupied with a punitive campaign against the tribes and their allies, who were said to have been all but exterminated by the Romans.
The uprising was, however, merely the prelude to a much bigger campaign led by Vercingetorix, chief of the Arverni tribe, who successfully united many Gallic tribes and states under his leadership. Recognizing that the Romans had an upper hand on the battlefield due to their equipment and training, he declined to fight against them and instead fought a “scorched earth” campaign to deprive them of supplies. Scorched earth is when you burn, take or otherwise dispose of any food source, plants, shelter and water sources. Caesar quickly returned from Rome to take charge of the campaign, pursuing the Gauls and capturing the town of Avaricum but suffering a defeat at Gergovia. Vercingetorix, instead of staying mobile and in the open, chose to hold out at Alesia. Caesar successfully started a siege and beat off a huge Gallic relief force who ran out of food. This marked the end of the Gallic Wars, although a few skirmishes took place throughout 51 BC. Caesar should have been aware that many of the senators hated him, but he dismissed his security force not long before his assassination.
It was reported that, Caesar was handed a warning note as he entered the senate meeting that day but did not read it. After he entered the hall, Caesar was surrounded by senators holding daggers. Servilius Casca struck the first blow, hitting Caesar in the neck and drawing blood. The other senators all joined in, stabbing him repeatedly about the head. The assassination of Caesar was taken to be an act of protecting and restoring the failing republic, rather than a personal hatred of the person. You see, Rome had thrown off it’s monarchy in 509 BC and instituted a republic. Because of the actions and unpopularity of the last Roman King the word Rex (King) became a dirty word to most Romans.
Those were the official reasons given by the senators and all the assassins were senators, and had a lot to lose when their power was limited by Caesar. The tensions between Caesar and the senate had been going on for almost a hundred years. The popularity of Caesar with the Roman people was actually a point against him in the eyes of the senate. The Senators wanted to keep their power no matter what and had to have a justification for their assassination.It is difficult to define a hero. Different people have different ideas and beliefs of who qualifies as a hero and who doesn’t.
Regardless, Julius Caesar was a hero who saved Rome.Works CitedWatkins, Thayer. “A Timeline of the Life of Julius Caesar.” San José State University , San José State University, www.
, n.d. Web. 31 Jan. 2018.