Gaius Julius Caesar (13 July 100 BC – 15 March 44 BC) was a Roman general, statesman and consul of the Roman Republic. He played a critical role in the events that led to the demise of the Republic and the rise of the Roman Empire. Excelling in various qualities such as leadership, intelligence and cunning, Caesar contributed his exceptional talents to the Roman war effort against the slave rebellion led by Spartacus. After the war, Caesar ultimately went on to establish himself as one of the greatest military commanders in history.
Caesar's conquest of Gaul, completed by 51 BC, extended Rome's territory to the Oceanus Britannicus (English Channel) and the river Rhenus (Rhine). Caesar became the first Roman general to cross both when he built a bridge across the Rhine and conducted the first invasion of Britannia.
Gaius Julius Caesar was born on 13 July 100 BC. A scion of the Julii Caesares, a branch of the gens Julia, Caesar's family was one of the most ancient and illustrious patrician clans of Rome. The Julii traced their lineage to the early history of the Roman Republic and even claimed divine descent from the goddess Venus. However, by Caesar's time the Julii lacked the financial resources he required to pursue his political ambitions. Forced to borrow large sums of money in order to accomplish one endeavor or another, the young Caesar was often in debt throughout his early years.
Caesar was recruited by Crassus to aid him in defeating Spartacus and his rebellion.
Life after the war
In 60 BC, Caesar, Crassus and Pompey formed a political alliance that was to dominate Roman politics for several years. These achievements granted him unmatched military power and threatened to eclipse the standing of Pompey, who had realigned himself with the Senate after the death of Crassus in 53 BC.
With the Gallic Wars concluded, the Senate ordered Caesar to lay down his military command and return to Rome. Caesar refused, and marked his defiance in 49 BC by crossing the Rubicon with a legion to march into the city itself. Civil war resulted, from which he emerged as the unrivaled leader of Rome.
He was eventually proclaimed "dictator in perpetuity", "dictator for life". But the underlying political conflicts had not been resolved, and on the Ides of March (15 March) 44 BC, Caesar was assassinated by a group of senators led by Marcus Junius Brutus. A new series of civil wars broke out, and the constitutional government of the Republic was never restored. Caesar's adopted heir Octavian, later known as Augustus, rose to sole power, and the era of the Roman Empire began. Caesar was proclaimed DIVVS IVLIVS for the people of Rome
Traits and Skills
A soldier by profession, Caesar possessed formidable and stealthy combat skills, able to match Spartacus, Crixus and Gannicus and overcome many other skilled rebels. During the war, Caesar used his cunning as a means of besting physically strong opponents and was quick to exploit weaknesses presented by his enemies to gain the upper hand. His combat skills allow him to face the strongest of rebels, but was unable to beat certain rebels without help.
Caesar was a brilliant but easily angered man, while ill-tempered at the most inconvenient moments. He did not hesitate to assault his or other peoples slaves, or personally kill a soldier he considered a coward or weak. For all his cleverness with words, Caesar was nicknamed the Silver Tongue, whose ability to speak to, deceive, and manipulate his opponents was legendary. Caesar had a strong desires for political greatness, as well as a love for wine and women. Despite having been a hardened soldier with an appearance of arrogance and violence, Caesar was empathetic towards others in need, and did not like the sight of other Romans in pain. Caesar never underestimated who he fought against, such as the rebel leader Spartacus or the leader of the Gauls, Vercingetorix.
In his youth Caesar was ill-tempered at inconvenient moments, calculative, and carried an impeccable charm. Caesar's ability to speak to, deceive, and manipulate his opponents was as legendary in his youth as it was later in his life. Caesar's capacity for cleverness is only matched by his boundlessly ambitious, with a strong appetite for wine and women as his strong desire for political greatness. Despite being a hardened soldier with an appearance of arrogance and violence, Caesar was empathetic towards those in need, and did not like the sight of other Romans, particularly women, in pain. In contrast to Roman society, Caesar shared Crassus' belief in not underestimating his opponents, especially Spartacus. Caesar never underestimated Spartacus during the rebellion. He also shared a respect for his tactical abilities, and for the skills of his generals Crixus and Gannicus. In his youth, Caesar had a lot more courage, and didn't back down from any challenge.
Caesar is a tall man with blond hair and a muscular build. Caesar had long hair and a beard as remnants of his last campaign and kept them shortly during the war, but later trimmed his hair down as well as shaving off his beard, to appear more like a Roman soldier.
- Caesar was first portrayed by John Gavin in the 1960 film Spartacus.
- Caesar was later protrayed again by Richard Dillane in the 2004 miniseries.
- Caesar was also portrayed by Ciarán Hinds in the HBO television show Rome
- Caesar was also portrayed by Todd Lasance in the Starz original series Spartacus: War of the Damned.
- Caesar was 29 years old during the Third Servile War.
- Historically it was unknown whether Caesar fought in the Third Servile War, though many historians consider it possible.