MilitaryHistoryOnline.com Home   Genealogy   Forums   Search   Contact
Search
Amazon:
Keywords:
Mywatchhasrundown, can replace it General quartz, electronic watches need to replica watches uk provide power battery, battery life is generally around 1-2. When your watch appears Hands tremble, slow down, stop and go and other abnormal phenomenon, it is necessary to consider the replacement of breitling replica the battery, the button battery is not expensive, but open the watch is a technology live, not It is recommended to disassemble the watch and replace it, preferably to a professional repair table. Attention, watch the power exhaust should be replaced or removed as soon as possible, so as not to damage the battery leakage movement. How long is the watch life The service life of the watch has not been able to use the exact digital representation. Generally speaking, the life of rolexreplicauk.co.uk the watch and the wearer are properly used and guaranteed.Watch related. For example, Peter Pace wear watches a bath, watch the appearance of dirty, watchband length discomfort, bad environment, serious impact, will make the watch is easy to damage, shorten the Service life¡£
MHO Home
MHO Home
 Ancient
 Medieval
 17th Century
 18th Century
 19th Century
 American Civil War
 World War I
 World War II
 Korea
 Vietnam
 20th - 21st Century


 Write for MHO
 Search MHO
 Civil War Genealogy Database
 Privacy Policy

Dreams of Empire - Fall of Rome
MHO Home
 Fall of Rome Home
  Dreams of Empire Home
   Part 1
   Part 2 <<<
   Part 3
   Part 4
   Bibliography

The Fall of Rome
MHO Home
 Fall of Rome Home

The Fall of Rome Articles
The Fall of Rome

Dreams of Empire - The Fall of the Roman Empire
Dreams of Empire
The Fall of the Roman Republic

by Addison Hart

Pharsalus
The night sky late on August 8th, 48 BC, was suddenly host to a literal ball of fire, some said a fiery torch, flung into the air, twisting about in the sky, slamming down somewhere off in the darkness. The object had come, it seemed, from the direction of the camps of Julius Caesar, and had been heading straight for the camps of Gnaeus Pompeius. Obviously, within seconds of the appearance of the fiery body, the Pompeians began to scramble about under the stars. They were preparing for an attack that they knew would sooner or later come. It seemed that Caesar was finally going to end this civil war once and for all. The very next day, August the 9th, the Consul/Dictator of Rome did just that.

When Pompey awoke the next morning (assuming he even managed sleep on that rather hectic night), he knew that this was the day old Caesar would come, and he knew that he would definitely be defeated by this veteran army, despite the words of General Titus Labienus, a veteran of the Gallic Wars, who felt that Caesar was just as unprepared as Pompey. All the same, Pompey had 40,000 men with him, Caesar only sported 22,000. Pompey's army was flung out around this mountainous region of the very mountainous province of Greece. None other than Ahenobarbus commanded the left wing of the army. Labienus' cavalry and all of Pompey's archers were positioned nearby. Pompey himself was at this part of the field in his observation post. Two legions of Italians and Syrians formed the center. Publius Scipio commanded this portion of the army. To the right, along the river Enipeus, sat the remains of Afranius' troops, under the command of L. Lentulus Crus.

Caesar launched the attack in the sunlight, a Centurion, Crastinus, lead the shock troops forward, slamming into Pompey's green troops. The brave Centurion gave a final cry to Caesar before leading his century on into his enemy, apparently cutting several of his enemies down before he fell with a sword swing to the mouth. With a toss of the old javelin, Caesar invited Pompey's cavalry onward. The horsemen struck Caesar's right. Under a hail of pila, Pompey's brave men stopped in their tracks, and Caesar's Gallic veterans came forward. "Face to face and even able to speak to each other, they recognized their adversaries and called to them by name," reports Dio Cassius. In the midst of the slaughter that began, there were soon shouted messages from the wounded to the unhurt, last minute messages to the family, and last minute insults to the enemy. "The cries of the foreigners were unintelligible and caused a deep terror." Within a short time, Pompey's right wing had been destroyed, most of his archers and slingers slaughtered where they stood. As Plutarch wrote, "They were the flower of Roman and Italian youth." Ahenobarbus, Caesar's old foe, had fallen in the midst of the battle. Labienus had managed an escape with his cavalry, however. Caesar, upon seeing the dead men in Pompey's camp, gave a groan. "This is what they wanted!" Now, with the right wing of Pompey's army literally crushed, the left wing began to crumble. In a short time, it too was gone. The center, bravely holding on in the phalanx formation, finally had to break under the pressure of Caesar's relentless attacks on all sides. Pharsalus was over. Caesar had won. Scipio and Cato would be pursued with their troops on further, though ultimately both would perish violently, Cato taking his own life with a knife to the chest, much to the regret of the dictator. Pompey, however, had escaped.

As Caesar's men mopped up Pompeian resistance and searched for the body of the former triumvir and general that they were sure lay slain on the field, Pompey ripped off his uniform, dressing as a common waif, and with his friends hijacked a small boat, sneaking away as the battle came to a close. When Caesar finally realized that his enemy had eluded him, Pompey was off for Egypt. Caesar was quick to pursue with a body of his men, but it seemed that they'd lost him. Unfortunately, though Pompey had eluded old Caesar, he hadn't made it to safety yet. His former Egyptian ally, Cleopatra VII, was out it seemed. Her much younger (and more impressionable) brother Ptolemy had, with the assistance of his henchmen, booted the young queen off the throne, and had set himself up as Pharaoh, though his advisors, men such as General Achillas, Theodotus, and Pothinus the eunuch, were the real power behind the boy's throne. Ptolemy XIII soon had to make the decision of bringing in old Pompey (as well as bringing in the wrath of Caesar), or, quite literally, to kill him. He chose, regretfully, the latter.

After arriving at the port of Alexandria in his small boat, Pompey sent out a messenger to Ptolemy asking if he might be allowed in to claim sanctuary from Caesar's armies. Though Pompey must have felt that he was now far from the madding crowd, the advisors of the king simply decided that the best way to please Caesar and to keep out of a Roman war would be, quite simply, to go kill the fugitive before Caesar even got anywhere near Egypt. The advisors sent a group of men down to greet him. Among that group were two of Pompey's old comrades. Seeing them from the boat, Pompey brought the boat closer to the shore. A group of men jumped aboard to greet him. As Pompey stooped over to look at one of his speeches that he intended to give to the Pharaoh, one of these men suddenly sheathed his dagger in Pompey's back. Within seconds of the first attack on his person, more men rushed into the boat, bearing down on him with sword and dagger. In a rather short period of time, Gnaeus Pompeius Magnus, Pompey the Great was dead. Slicing off the general's head, the men left the boat, Pompey's body stripped naked, lying in the center of the rickety old thing. After a few hours, the boat and the body were cremated together. The head (preserved in brine) was sent off to Caesar, the 'delivery-man' who handed him the pate, along with a signet ring of Pompey's, made the quite foolish remark, "Dead men don't bite". After one look, Caesar buried his face in his hands, bursting into tears.

The Little War
Even though Pompey was dead, his sons weren't. Gnaeus Jr., Quintus, and Sextus each had their own armies and navies, and indeed, ruled the Mediterranean Sea. Kings like Pharnaces of Pontus, Juba I, and generals like Titus Labienus were still on the loose, and were fighting for the Pompeians, dominating North Africa. Caesar's work, it seemed, was far from finished. As his troops took on Pharnaces, Juba, and the bunch, Caesar himself was called to settle a political dispute in Egypt. Pompey's one-time ally, Cleopatra VII, was back in Egypt, and stirring up trouble for Ptolemy XIII and the rest of the Pharonic family. However, the relatively uninterested Caesar so irritated the young king that he blockaded his small force within the very palace of Alexandria. Caesar, it seemed, was now a virtual prisoner to this little brat. So began the Alexandrian War and a short war it would be. During the winter, Caesar met with Cleopatra, smuggled into the palace it seemed, some early historians claiming that she had been rolled up in a carpet for old Caesar. Whether Cleopatra was a knock-dead gorgeous gal as she has been depicted in film and painting, Caesar was obviously enchanted by her and, despite the fact that he was already married to Calpurnia, in a short period of time the young queen was pregnant with Caesar's one and only (known) natural son. Caesar, it seemed, had melted down (due to the queen's affections) from a tough, Mars-like general into a warm, cuddly little buck, and Cleopatra was going to take full advantage of it. Caesar and Cleopatra, having now created their infamous alliance, had gained the total hatred of Achillas and Pothinus (who plotted Caesar's murder) and the royal tyke, and their own troops were soon literally skirmishing with Caesar's 3,000 in the streets of Alexandria. In one fight, the Great Library itself was destroyed. These tough street fights were wearing down Caesar's small force in Egypt, and things were becoming increasingly jeopardous for him. Though such lieutenants as Marcus Antonius and Marcus Lepidus were out there defeating the enemy, this blasted blockade of Ptolemy's was being assisted by the Pompeians, who eagerly rammed all Caesarian ships they could locate. In these circumstances, nothing could get through. Pothinus at least was dead, executed by Cleopatra. Caesar, however, was in grave danger; an attempt on his life had already been made at the Pharos Lighthouse. Was Caesar, the conqueror of Gaul and Pompey, doomed to die in a street fight at the hand of the subject of a spoiled little brat?

Amazingly, within a very short amount of time, the Alexandrian War came to a very quick and violent end. A wealthy little Syrian named Mithridates of Pergamum, and Antipater, a member of the government of Judaea, had slipped through the Egyptian blockade in a daring run. Amazingly, the Oriental army landed itself in Alexandria, fighting it's way through the streets, past Ptolemy's bodyguard and the Alexandrian mob towards the palace. Joined by Caesar's troops, the armies became one, and, under Caesar's direction, they set out after Ptolemy and Achillas, whom were building their own army. Catching members of the royal family such as Cleopatra's youngest brother, and her sister Arsinoe, they turned onward down the Nile to vanquish Ptolemy XIII. The Nile Delta, Egypt's source of life, was soon the spot of the showdown that ended the war. Achillas and Ptolemy were woefully undermanned when compared to Caesar, and to boot none of these troops had received half as much training as the men of the great dictator had. The King of Egypt, Ptolemy XIII, didn't stand a chance. In a short battle, the Egyptians were mowed down, the waters turning red with the blood of hundreds of Egyptian troops. Achillas was caught near the end of the action, and was executed on the spot, a single swing of a Roman sword separating his head from his neck. The battle had become an abysmal slaughter. Near the end of the action the boy king himself was found face down in the Nile. No sword or dagger had finished him. He'd simply drowned.

After the confrontation, the crown passed from the drowned Ptolemy XIII to his youngest brother, who would become Ptolemy XIV, and who would also become Cleopatra's new husband, despite the great difference in age. Young Ptolemy wasn't the true ruler of Egypt. The co-regent, Caesar's favorite, Cleopatra, was the real power behind the throne. Caesar spent the next two months on Cleopatra's golden barge, on a tour of the Nile itself. While he sat with the queen in her large beds, or ran about the barge's five fine restaurants, Caesar watched as many of his old enemies were simply annihilated by his lieutenants. After Cleopatra bore Caesar a son, Ptolemy Caesarion, on June 23rd, 47 BC, Caesar was off again to defeat his enemy. After a brief stay in Judaea, Caesar joined his armies, marching on Pharnaces of Pontus. In a very short amount of time, with the assistance of Asander, Caesar completely defeated old Pharnaces, who was murdered before he could get to safety. Caesar remarked after the final battle at Zela, "Veni, Vidi, Vici," "I came, I saw, I conquered." Over the next two years, Caesar spent all of his time wrecking the remainder of the Pompeian force, taking back North Africa and Numidia (much to the chagrin of Juba, who ordered his slaves to do him in when he was informed of his defeat), and then Spain. Gnaeus and Sextus Pompey had arrived there in 46 BC, raising an army with the assistance of Titus Labienus. In 45 BC, Caesar won the final battle. Scipio was dead, as well as Cato, dead at Thapsus in the year 46, the latter's end coming unmercifully slow after a botched attempt at falling on his sword. Gnaeus Pompeius the Younger was caught, and then, on Caesar's orders, he was beheaded. The city of Munda, garrisoned by Labienus, had fallen, Labienus himself falling in the thick of the combat. Caesar, it seemed, had won the final victory.

The Great Dictator

Politically this was also the case. By the end of 45 BC, Caesar had been dictator thrice, and Consul four times. As 44 BC came about, Caesar would become Consul for the fifth time, and, much to the horror of many conservative senators, dictator for life. The dictator's word, it seemed was law. Even the Roman calendar was not above him. Long in need of a change, the ancient, though inaccurate Roman calendar was toppled by Caesar, and in it's place he instituted his own calendar, 'the Julian Calendar'. He even added a whole new month to the old calendar, naming it July, after, well, who else but himself? He also decided, for heaven knows what reason, to be lenient on his conquered enemies. Perhaps he thought that the supporters of the Senate would flock to him, seeing him as by far a more kind and compassionate overlord. Whatever the case, he let his enemies be, and became, well, careless, running about the city itself without so much as a bodyguard. That, you might say, is simply inviting trouble.

Of course, Caesar was no fool. His public service works seemed to be gaining some admiration for him. Perhaps even crusty old Cicero, that old champion of citizen's rights, was somewhat pleased with the new calendar. Caesar was quickly gaining support in Italia through his plans (never carried out) to build dikes to keep the sea from washing over Ostia, the port of Rome, or clearing the shipping routes of hidden reefs, and to construct more ports and roads for transportation and trade. "All these things he had in preparation," writes Plutarch. In celebration of his victories, he held lavish gladiatorial shows, including huge "sham battles of ships, cavalry, infantry, elephants, and with public banquets extending over many days," as Paterculus records. "He celebrated five triumphs [victory parades]. The furnishings for his Gallic triumph were of citrus, for his Ponthic of acanthus, for his African of ivory, and for his Spanish of polished silver." He brought home more than six hundred million sesterces worth of spoils.

Of course, at the same time he severely tested the people at home. Firstly, he brought home with him the Egyptian royals, Cleopatra, her brother Ptolemy, and, of course, her child (and Caesar's), Caesarion. This not only disgusted a good number of Romans, but it showed to them that Caesar had betrayed his wife, the long-suffering Calpurnia. If this wasn't bad enough, he put up a golden statue of Cleopatra in the Temple of Venus Genetrix, right in the Forum of Caesar itself! To rub salt in the wounds of the conservatives, it was painfully obvious that Caesar was fixing to go one step beyond dictator, to become, of all things, a king of Rome. Rome had tossed away the monarchy in the early 400s, and was not about to simply give Caesar the crown. While many still supported Caesar, a good number were wary of him, especially when he tried the rigged-up 'turning down the crown' routine. After the Senate grudgingly gave him the position as dictator for life, a position only given to someone in the most hopeless emergency, Caesar proved that he wanted the laurel wreath to be planted about his cranium once and for all. This new imperator, wearing the purple robes, the laurel crown, and carrying the scepter of the victorious general, was approached on the feast of the Lupercalia (February 15th, 44 BC) by Marcus Antonius, the second consul, bearing the diadem, offering it to Caesar. It was, of course, a set-up, but one that Caesar himself had come up with, in order to see how the citizenry would react to him actually taking the diadem and becoming king. When only the several plants in the crowd clapped, Caesar shook his head dramatically in refusal. He was, of course, very reluctant to do so.

Strangely enough, along the boot of Italia, support began to grow for Caesar to actually become king, and no doubt the idea of becoming Gaius Iulius Caesar Rex was attractive to the dictator. However, the more the liberal citizenry began to push for Caesar's acceptance, the more the Senate became wary of the old, bald general. Slowly, the idea of simply killing old Caesar became slightly more attractive to several members of the Senate. In particular, it became attractive to General C. Cassius Longinus, Servillus Casca, and Tullius Cimber. Longinus hated Caesar for blocking his path to becoming Consul; Cimber had a better reason. Caesar had exiled his brother for being a Pompeian. Slowly, another man was recruited, Marcus Junius Brutus, the speaker, and a member of the late Cato's family. He and Cassius had fought Caesar on the side of the Pompeians, and all were afraid of Caesar becoming a king. It simply wouldn't do. As the now fifty-six year old Caesar planned an invasion of Parthia, slotted for mid 44 BC, which he promised would avenge Crassus and take back the banners of the destroyed legions, the Senators planned to assassinate the dictator. As more and more Senators joined in the plot (including friends of Caesar, men such as Decimus Brutus and Gaius Trebonius) Caesar, for the first time began to worry. When rumors reached him that Antonius and General Dolabella might be planning a rebellion, Caesar responded "I am not much afraid of these fat, long-haired fellows, but more of those pale lean ones," meaning, of course, Cassius and Brutus.

Odd events occurred in the early days of March, 44 BC. As the poet Horace recorded: "the sheeted dead/ did squeak and gibber in the Roman streets." Horace would know. He was there. Plutarch tells us of loud cries that were heard in the night, flaming men "moving in", a soldier's slave "who threw a mass of flame off his hand and seemed to onlookers to be burning himself…yet when the flame went, there was nothing wrong with the man". Caesar himself must have felt a little uneasy when he offered sacrifice at the temple and discovered, to the horror of the priests and onlookers, that the animal had no heart. Indeed, a soothsayer is said to have warned Caesar of the Ides of March, March the 15th, 44 BC. When that day dawned, Caesar noticed the man, and cried at him happily that the Ides had come. "Yes, they are here," the man responded, "but they have not yet gone." Caesar, much to the sorrow of Calpurnia, who had apparently been that night visited by strange omens, left that morning to address the Senate, which met, oddly enough, at the Theater of Pompey instead of the Curia.

Outside the Theater, loyal Antonius was detained in conversation with Caesar's heir (and one of his secret enemies) Decimus 'Albinus' Brutus, while inside, in the Pompeian Assembly Room, preparations were made to kill the entering Caesar. Cassius, looking up at the statue Pompey had erected to himself, silently invoked the help of the late triumvir to help them save the Republic. Caesar took a seat underneath that statue, and began to listen to one of the plotters, Senator Cimber, asking him to revoke the sentence on his brother. Brutus, Cassius, and sixteen others came round to speak to him, and Caesar rose to his feet. Caesar, of course, rejected Cimber's pleas, and Cimber grabbed at his own toga and tore it down from his throat. This was not simply a sign of frustration; it was a sign of 'let's go, boys'.

As Caesar watched Cimber tear down his toga, Casca unsheathed his sica, and promptly attempted to sheath it in Caesar's neck. The wound, though not very deep at all, was still rather painful to Caesar. Immediately, Casca fell back in pain, Caesar having given his attacker a nasty jab in the arm with his trusty stylus. As Casca dropped, his dagger flying out of his hand, Caesar cried "You damned Casca, what are you doing?" Simultaneously, Casca called his brother for assistance. Immediately, knives flew at Caesar's face, cutting through the air, and cutting into the dictator's body. Pushed against the statue of Pompey, Caesar could barely resist his attackers. After being stabbed numerous times, Caesar staggered forward, trying desperately to break away from this crew. However, as he did so, Marcus Junius Brutus lunged forward, his dagger pointing right for Caesar's chest. It was instead embedded deep in his groin. In horror, staring Brutus right in the eyes, Caesar spat up some blood, and managed to spit out along with it the words, "Kai su technon?" This is the Greek for, "You too, my child?" (It is actually quite possible that Brutus really was Caesar's son.) It was then that Caesar fell backward, slamming against the blood-soaked pedestal of the Pompeian statue, his toga falling over his face. His lifeblood quickly drained from his butchered trunk. He was dead. There were twenty-three stab wounds covering his body, puncturing his toga. The Senators, some of them wounded accidentally by each other in the rush to stab Caesar, quickly filed out of the Theater, waving their bloodied weapons in triumph. Caesar was left alone in the Assembly Room; his pierced bloody lying against the statue, surrounded by pools of his own blood. The eyes of marble Pompey stared unseeing down at the dictator's corpse. Caesar was dead; the Republic was, so it seemed, saved. Now what?

Cleaning Up the Mess
"Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears; I come to bury Caesar, not to praise him. The evil that men do lives after them; the good is oft interred with their bones; So let it be with Caesar," says Antony in Act III, Scene II of Shakespeare's Julius Caesar, "The noble Brutus hath told you that Caesar was ambitious: If it were so, it was a grievous fault, And grievously hath Caesar answer'd it. Here, under leave of Brutus and the rest--For Brutus is an honorable man; So are they all, all honorable men—Come I to speak in Caesar's funeral. He was my friend, faithful, and just to me: But Brutus says he was ambitious; and Brutus is an honorable man. He hath brought many captives home to Rome, Whose ransom did the general coffers fill: Did this in Caesar seem ambitious?"

The scene is, of course, the Forum, the date is March 20th, 44 BC. Marcus Antonius, delivering his funeral speech to the hundreds of thousands of mourners, the plebeians and patricians alike, begins in criticism against Caesar, as his old commander's body lies on the pyre, covered in purple and gold cloth, slowly burning away in the flames. Slowly, however, Marc Antony changes the whole gist of the speech from criticism of Caesar to downright Caesarian passion. "When that the poor have cried, Caesar hath wept: Ambition should be made of sterner stuff: Yet Brutus says he was ambitious; and Brutus is an honorable man. You all did see that on the Lupercal I thrice presented him a kingly crown, Which he did thrice refuse: was this ambition? Yet Brutus says he was ambitious; And, sure, he is an honorable man."

Of course C. Cassius Longinus, Marcus Brutus, and Servillus Casca, along with the throng of other Senators who had taken part in the assassination of Caesar, must be, at this point, beginning to feel slightly uncomfortable, as they undoubtedly try to take their eyes off the crowd, which is quickly growing incredibly angry with the murderers. Of course, Antonius doesn't let the killers off easily. He continues with, "I speak not to disprove what Brutus spoke, But here I am to speak what I do know. You all did love him once, not without cause: What cause withholds you then, to mourn for him? O judgement! thou art fled to brutish beasts, And men have lost their reason. Bare with me; My heart is in the coffin there with Caesar, And I must pause till it come back to me."

Antonius soon continues, on and on, and soon, the crowd is turned in fury against the murderers. Shakespeare may well have simply been nothing more than a playwright trying to build up the drama of the scene with this speech, which was certainly concocted by old Billy solely for the play. However, despite the apparent invention of the words, Shakespeare was more correct than one would at first believe. Antonius most certainly did give a speech at the cremation of Caesar; the crowd most certainly was turned against Caesar's assassins, in all probability because of Antonius' words. Unfortunately for us, and perhaps fortunately for Shakespeare, we don't really know what all Antonius actually said at the cremation, but Plutarch certainly gives us an idea of the gist of it, and Shakespeare certainly would have been influenced by his description. "He [Antonius] saw that the people were deeply stirred and fascinated by his words, and proceeded to mingle with his praises of Caesar compassion and horror at the woeful deed," writes Plutarch. "As he ended his speech, he waved above them the clothing of the dead man, blood-stained and torn by swords, and called the perpetrators of the deed villains and assassins. He got the people in such a state of frenzy that they piled up benches and tables and burned Caesar's body in the forum, and then snatching up flaming faggots from the pyre, ran to the houses of the murderers to attack them." Brutus, Cassius, and the lot would most certainly have been a little worried by now, and would have begun to wonder, "Should we have done this?" What had placed them in this sort of jeopardy? Saving the Republic, it seemed, had.

Of course, when the assassins (all twenty-some of them) plunged their knives into Caesar, they would have expected a little more enthusiasm for what they'd done from the people of Rome, but surprisingly, that enthusiasm hadn't come. The discontent had all started lightly, of course, a few crying individuals, a few shouts of rage, some old woman breaking down in the street, that sort of thing, but then it became a little more worrying. Several rich citizens seem to have actually commissioned busts of the dead general based on his own exanimate face, leading to a large group of busts with the sunken cheeks and a face that looked so different in contrast to those of the animate Caesar. Next, of course, came the cremation. Brutus' little eulogy was laconic and pithy, and basically said that Caesar had simply gotten what was coming to him for being overly ambitious. However, Antonius' eulogy ensured that the crowd would take retribution on the killers. Antonius and Octavius (Caesar's nephew, adopted son, and heir) were the heroes of the hour. Snatching up pieces of burning wood, the mob rushed off to go find as many of the killers as possible. The crowd saw among them a praetor for that year, Lucius Cornelius Cinna, a relative of Caesar's first wife and, of course, one of the murderers. Within a few minutes the crowd was upon him, tearing him to shreds. Unfortunately, they'd gotten the wrong Cinna; this one was a tribune, Gaius Helvius Cinna, and one of Caesar's best friends. Ah well, we all make mistakes. Interestingly enough, Cinna reported of a strange omen that he'd seen in a dream that morning, before the funeral. In the dream, Caesar invited him to dinner. Cinna turned down the offer, but Caesar still dragged him along anyway, in spite of his protests.

Strangely enough, it wasn't simply Caesar's enemies that the mob wanted to bump off. Cleopatra, the Ptolemaic Queen of Egypt (and a bosom chum of Caesar's, so much so that she'd born him his only positively identified child, Caesarion) was nearly killed in her villa across the Tiber from the city. The reason was that, of course, she had corrupted poor old Caesar with her sinful ways, and had, through this, made poor Calpurnia the wreck she was these days. Had it not been for an early warning from a maidservant, Cleopatra probably wouldn't have survived the night. Luckily for her, she managed to get out of Rome on the 15th of April. "I hate the Queen," writes Cicero, "Her arrogance, when she was living across the Tiber in the gardens…I cannot recall without profound bitterness." Clearing out also were Brutus, Cassius, and the lot, heading out for a much safer place to stay. Things were getting increasingly nasty in Rome, especially when one was an enemy of the late lamented Caesar. Five days after Caesar died, Marcus Cicero, the barrister, wrote to his friend Atticus, "Ah, friend, I fear that the Ides of March have given us nothing beyond the pleasure and satisfaction of our hatred and indignation. What news I receive, what sights I see! 'Lofty was that deed, aye, but bootless!'"

- - -

Copyright © 2002 Addison Hart.

Written by Addison Hart.

< Previous Page

Next Page >

© 2016 MilitaryHistoryOnline.com, LLC Contact Brian Williams at: militaryhistoryonline@hotmail.com