Plutarch life of caesar. Study Guide for Plutarch's Life of Julius Caesar 2022-12-22
Plutarch life of caesar Rating:
Plutarch's "Life of Caesar" is a biographical essay that provides a detailed account of the life and accomplishments of Julius Caesar, one of ancient Rome's most famous leaders. Plutarch, a Greek historian, wrote the essay in the first century AD, drawing upon a variety of sources including Caesar's own writings and the accounts of those who knew him personally.
The essay begins with a brief overview of Caesar's ancestry and early life. Born into a wealthy and influential family, Caesar was well-educated and received training in both military and political matters. He quickly rose through the ranks of the Roman government and became a popular leader, known for his charisma, intelligence, and military prowess.
One of the key themes of Plutarch's essay is Caesar's ambition and desire for power. Despite his successes, Caesar was not content to remain a mere politician and military leader. He aspired to be the supreme ruler of Rome and was willing to do whatever it took to achieve that goal. This ambition ultimately led to his assassination in 44 BC, as his enemies saw him as a threat to their own power and influence.
Another important aspect of Caesar's life that Plutarch explores is his military career. Caesar was a skilled general who led his troops to victory in many battles, including the conquest of Gaul and the civil war that followed the assassination of Julius Caesar. He was also instrumental in the expansion of the Roman Empire, as he conquered new territories and brought them under Roman control.
Despite his many accomplishments, Caesar was not without his flaws. Plutarch describes him as being prone to anger and prone to making rash decisions, and he also notes that Caesar was not always fair or just in his treatment of others. However, he also notes that Caesar was generally well-respected and admired by his contemporaries, and that his leadership and military successes had a lasting impact on the Roman Empire.
In conclusion, Plutarch's "Life of Caesar" is a comprehensive and detailed account of the life and accomplishments of Julius Caesar. It provides a rich and nuanced portrayal of a complex and influential historical figure, and offers valuable insights into the political and military landscape of ancient Rome.
Plutarch • Life of Caesar
As Caesar was sacrificing, the victim's heart was missing, a very bad omen, because no living creature can subsist without a heart. But when it was to no purpose, and the vessel now took in much water, Caesar finding himself in such danger in the very mouth of the river, much against his will permitted the master to turn back. Perhaps he wanted to be Sulla without the killing. But they that were about him grew to such boldness and security, assuring themselves of victory, that Domitius 1 , Spinther, and Scipio, as if they had already conquered, quarreled which should succeed Caesar as Pontifex Maximus. Pompey had not been long under any such apprehensions, having till lately despised Caesar, as thinking it no difficult matter to put down him whom he himself had advanced. I don't like him, he looks so pale.
Plutarch’s Lives: Life of Julius Caesar by Plutarch
This action, glorious in itself, Caesar crowned with another yet more noble, by gathering in a body all the barbarians that had escaped out of the battle, above one hundred thousand in number, and obliging them to reoccupy the country which they had deserted, and the cities which they had burnt. The Numidians which are light horsemen, and very ready of service being a great number together, would be on a sudden in every place, and spread all the fields over thereabout, so that no man dared peep out of the camp to go for forage. But Caesar turning straight unto him, caught hold of his sword, and held it hard: and they both cried out, Caesar in Latin: "O vile traitor Casca, what doest thou? He accordingly passed into Sicily at about the time of the winter solstice, and to remove from his officers' minds all hopes of delay there, encamped by the seashore; and as soon as ever he had a fair wind, put to sea with three thousand foot and a few horse. But those who were about him were so confident of success, that Domitius, and Spinther, and Scipio, as if they had already conquered, quarreled which should succeed Caesar in the pontificate. Who were Caesar's wives? When Sulla's side gained power in Rome, Caesar as a "Marian," or sympathizer with Marius not only lost his position and inheritance, and was pressured to divorce his wife, but had to go into hiding as well.
He wrote verses and speeches, and made them his auditors, and those who did not admire them, he called to their faces illiterate and barbarous, and would often, in raillery, threaten to hang them. ¶ Caesar had long planned to overthrow ¶ The wars in Gaul haven been his exercise-ground, Caesar now sets his face toward Rome and his grand endeavor of restoring order and establishing a new settlement between the rich and the poor. ¶ When they were ready on both sides to give the signal for battle, ¶ Seeing his opponents were young men, not battle-scarred veterans, Caesar urges him men to strike at the faces of the enemy, who will shun blemishes. Cato had undertaken to defend Utica, and for that reason was not in the battle. Crassus gave him his word, he would.
¶ ¶ Clodius, a dissolute patrician, seeks to debauch Caesar's wife Pompeia. The OGB group I attend voted Caesar the Great Life they would most like to have a beer with. Strabo, the philosopher, tells us that a number of men were seen, looking as if they were heated through with fire, contending with each other; that a quantity of flame issued from the hand of a soldier's servant, so that they who saw it thought he must be burnt, but that after all he had no hurt. Caesar, in this respect, also, blames Pompey's generalship, as if he had not been aware how the first encounter, when made with an impetus and upon the run, gives weight and force to the strokes, and fires the men's spirits into a flame, which the general concurrence fans to full heat. Who were the Gauls and the Germans? Marcus Juncus: governor of Asia in 75 B. The very gods themselves cannot force the winter season, or hinder the storms in their time; yet he pushes forward, as if he were not pursuing, but flying from an enemy.
Edited by Jonas Grethlein and Christopher B. Once in disorder, presently they turned about to fly; and so most shamefully ruined all. This man, then, was afterwards held in high esteem on the ground that it was due to him more than to any one else that the camp was not thrown into commotion. And because he had plucked up his race by the roots, men did not think it meet for him to triumph so, for the calamities of his country, rejoicing at a thing for the which he had but one excuse to allege in his defense, unto the gods and men: that he was compelled to do that which he did. But Scipio in the Senate, Pompey's father-in-law, made this motion: that if Caesar did not dismiss his army by a certain day appointed him, the Romans should proclaim him an enemy unto Rome. So great a waste had the civil war made in Rome alone, not to mention what the other parts of Italy and the provinces suffered. He dreamed, namely, that he saw himself in Pontifex Maximus, and many sent agents to Rome to hire and take possession of houses suitable for praetors and consuls, assuming that they would immediately hold these offices after the war.
But in a while the seeds of war, which had long since been secretly sown and scattered by the most powerful men in those warlike nations, broke forth into the greatest and most dangerous war that was in those parts. Crassus took upon him to satisfy those creditors who were most uneasy to him, and would not be put off any longer, and engaged himself to the amount of eight hundred and thirty talents, upon which Caesar was now at liberty to go to his province. Another was, when the enemy endeavored to cut off his communication by sea, he was forced to divert that danger by setting fire to his own ships, which, after burning the docks, thence spread on and destroyed the great library. They ordered that Caesar should be worshipped as a divinity, and nothing, even of the slightest consequence, should be revoked which he had enacted during his government. Cato made some attempts against these proceedings, but was seized and led off on the way to prison by Caesar, who expected that he would appeal to the tribunes. For the Aetolians also were in fear of Alexander, because they had destroyed the city of the Oeniadae, and because Alexander, on learning of it, had said that it would not be the sons of the Oeniadae, but he himself who would punish the Aetolians. Why was Caesar's reconciliation of Pompey and Crassus actually a play for power? Having managed his military affairs with good success, he was equally happy in the course of his civil government.
Plutarch's life of Julius Caesar [microform] : Plutarch : Free Download, Borrow, and Streaming : Internet Archive
Caesar being then created dictator by the Senate, called home again all the banished men, and restored their children to honour, whose fathers before had been slain in Sulla's time: and he relieved the debtors by an act remitting some part of the interest on their debts, and besides, did make some such other ordinances as those, but very few. Then Casca behind him struck him in the neck with his sword: howbeit the wound was not great nor mortal, because it seemed, the fear of such a devilish attempt did amaze him, and take his strength from him, that he killed him not at the first blow. These soldiers considered themselves employees of the army rather than citizens who occasionally had to fight : their loyalty was to their general, perhaps even more than to Rome itself. Such then, is the account of the battle which the victor himself has given in his letters. Nor would one have thought that, as at other times, the mere men and women fled from one town of Italy to another in their consternation; but that the very towns themselves left their sites and fled for succour to each other. Caesar partook of it without any disgust, and reprimanded his friends for finding fault with it.
Upon a tomb and obsequies for his friend, and upon their embellishments, he purposed to expend ten thousand talents, and wished that the ingenuity and novelty of the construction should surpass the expense. And so he hurried out of the Senate, and presenting himself to the people, and there placing Crassus and Pompey one on each side of him, he asked the two of them whether they consented to the bills he had proposed. Cicero IMPORTANT ADDITIONAL NOTE REGARDING THE BONA DEA TRIAL The rites of the Bona Dea Goddess were typically held in the house of a Roman magistrate with imperium consul or praetor. ¶ Caesar's great debt is an investment in his future which pays off very well. One lends interest to the other, and seeing what an expert dramatist created from the original source material is a wonderful lesson in writing. ¶ Caesar benefits from an excellent education gained in the school Apollonius son of Molon in Rhodes. Cato exclaimed loudly against this, and protested, with a great deal of warmth, that it was a shameful matter, and not to be suffered, that they should in that sort make havoc of the empire of Rome, distributing among themselves, through those wicked marriages, the governments of the provinces, and of great armies.
Part Three After all these things were ended, Caesar was chosen consul the fourth time, and went into Spain to make war with the sons of Pompey, who were yet but very young, but had notwithstanding raised a marvellous great army together, and showed themselves to have had manhood and courage worthy to command such an army, insomuch as they put Caesar himself in great danger of his life. This quieted the greater part of the commotions in these parts of Gaul, and Caesar, in the course of the winter, visited every part of the country, and with great vigilance took precautions against all innovations. Crassus gave him his word, he would. Part Two The second war he made was in defense of the Gauls against the Germans: although before, he himself had caused Ariovistus, their king, to be received for an ally of the Romans. ¶ He seizes the treasury of Rome. Caesar was descended from a god, but in Rome, at that time, that kind of thing was expected from the great families.
He was elected on purpose to effect Cicero's downfall; nor did Caesar leave the city to join his army till they two had overpowered Cicero and driven him out of Italy. Cato, who often foretold what the consequence of this alliance would be, had then the character of a sullen, interfering man; but in the end the reputation of a wise but unsuccessful counsellor. When he was come into Asia, to gratify Theopompus, the author of the collection of fables, he enfranchised the Cnidians, and remitted one third of their tribute to all the people of the province of Asia. ¶ Caesar pursues He marched so fast, that he left all his army behind him, except six hundred chosen horse, and five legions, with which he put to sea in the very middle of winter, about the beginning of the month January, which corresponds pretty nearly with the Athenian month Posideon, and having past the Ionian Sea, took Oricum and Apollonia, and then sent back the ships to ¶ In several skirmishes Caesar seeems to be getting the advantage over There were continual skirmishes about ¶ ¶ Save Caesar had found great difficulties in his march, for no country would supply him with provisions, his reputation being very much fallen since his late defeat. There, indeed, they rode over much gold and silver that was thrown away, passed by many waggons full of women and children which were coursing hither and thither without their drivers, and pursued those who were foremost in flight, thinking that Dareius was among them.