To some the Roman citizenry was falling victim to moral decay. Rise to Power Although he was born into the Julian gens, one of the oldest patrician families in Rome, Caesar was always a member of the democratic or popular party. Julius Caesar conquered Gaul between 58 and 50 bce and invaded Britain in 55 or 54 bce, thereby bringing the island into close contact with the Roman world. His generosity to defeated opponents, magnanimous though it was, did not win their affection. Caesar and Cleopatra seemed to have become lovers shortly after meeting, perhaps even that very night, and he remained in Egypt with her nine months. Caesar married Calpurnia, the daughter of a wealthy and powerful Populare senator, and married his daughter Julia to Pompey to further cement their arrangements. Caligula "Little Boots" Known as "Caligula" ('Little Boots'), Gaius Caesar Augustus Germanicus was … The statesman, philosopher and poet Marcus Tillius Cicero had even exposed a conspiracy led by the prominent senator Lucius Sergius Catiline to overthrow the Roman leadership. He prepared his seven books on the Gallic War for publication in 51 bce when he still had serious revolts in Gaul on his hands, and he wrote his books on the civil war and his Anticato in the hectic years between 49 and 44 bce. He turned his funeral orations for his wife and for his aunt to account, for political propaganda. Through a combination of political savvy, charisma and backhanded dealings, he … Julius Caesar was a Roman general and politician who named himself dictator of the Roman Empire, a rule that lasted less than one year before he was famously assassinated by political rivals in 44 B.C. Recognizing the wealth to be gained through conquest, Caesar left Rome with his legions and went to Gaul in 58 BCE. It was rumoured that during his first visit to the East he had had homosexual relations with King Nicomedes of Bithynia. This license lets others remix, tweak, and build upon this content non-commercially, as long as they credit the author and license their new creations under the identical terms. Without Caesar’s daughter and his financial and political backer tying him to Pompey, the latter aligned himself with the Optimate faction in Rome which he had long favored. When he was sixteen, his father died and Caesar became the head of the family. If he had not done this when he did it, Rome and the Greco-Roman world might have succumbed, before the beginning of the Christian era, to barbarian invaders in the West and to the Parthian Empire in the East. He is said to have repeatedly told them that, upon his release, he would hunt them down and have them crucified for the affront to his family and personal dignity and this threat the pirates understood as a joke. Still, he was stripped of his position as priest and his wife’s dowry was confiscated. His time as dictator is generally regarded as a prosperous one for Rome but the senators, and especially those among the Optimate faction, feared he was becoming too powerful and could soon abolish the senate entirely to rule absolutely as a king. News of Caesar’s great victory reached Egypt before him, however, and the Egyptians, believing that the gods favored Caesar over Pompey, had Pompey killed as he stepped on shore. Caesar’s physical vitality perhaps partly accounts for his sexual promiscuity, which was out of the ordinary, even by contemporary Greek and Roman standards. By signing up for this email, you are agreeing to news, offers, and information from Encyclopaedia Britannica. 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