View RSS Feed


Five_X: On Caesar

Rate this Entry
Quote Originally Posted by Five_X View Post
Quote Originally Posted by Master of Chaos View Post
This doesn't even make much sense at all - and I'm not even going to go into your poorly-summarized history of the man's life and history yet!

You're putting a huge amount of emphasis on Caesar's role as Flamen Dialis (one of several) and later his role as Pontifex Maximus. Caesar's only real interest in the gods was in his ability to make people think of him as divinely blessed, because Romans were a pretty superstitious bunch to say the least. He did things like deliberately rig auguries and regularly take the piss out of prophecies; as an example, there was a common belief that a Scipio could never be defeated in Africa - and so Caesar, while off in Africa, brought an unassuming, underwhelming member of that family along with his entourage just to go along with it. It wouldn't go so far as to say Caesar was completely cynical about religion, but to say he was a devout and faithful man is completely misinterpreting his use of religion as a political tool.

In light of religion, the simple reason why Caesar is given a good nod in Christianity is because he lived and died before Jesus came along. "Virtuous pagans," as they're called, were tenuously accepted as decent people in medieval Christianity, as they never had any opportunity to follow the teachings of Jesus. There are few - if any - similarly respected pagans who lived post-Jesus in medieval sources.

As for getting into the nitty-gritty of the sheet, I'm not sure why you included Riding with such a low rank. Caesar was noted as being absolutely phenomenal as a horse rider, though when on the march he did prefer to walk along with his men rather than stay atop a mount. It's interesting that his equestrian abilities are so praised by the ancient historians; Rome wasn't a society in which being able to ride a horse well was seen as particularly greater than oratory or any traditionally "noble" skills and vocations.

Item Construction and Territory Creation seem well out of place; Caesar wasn't much of a builder, besides the very clever military constructions he crafted - like his bridges over the Rhine, and his encampment at Alesia. That, though, wouldn't really fall under Item Construction or Territory Creation or anything of the sort. TC especially is weird, since Caesar went about all over the place, and didn't often stay in the same area for a very long time if he didn't have to.

Charisma at only C+ is weird, but I'll get to that later.

As for Shamanism and the Veni, Vidi, Vici NP, refer to my above paragraph about Caesar and Roman religion. It really, really doesn't make any sense for him to be in any way portrayed as a "holy man" of a sort.

Now, to get into more about your "history" references and the general character of Gaius Julius Caesar.

More than anything else - more than a renowned military commander, more than a brilliant orator, and more than a notorious playboy - Caesar was a political genius. Everything he did in life was directed towards increasing his personal power in Roman high society, and so he became a political machine with no equal. In 60 BC he was fairly unknown, noted as a rising star at best, but Rome had seen many of those come and go. What was one the minds of most Romans in that time was Sulla, and by extension Gaius Marius. Marius was an absolute legend, a true man of the people with unmatched popularity and military skill. He was the archetypal "people's general" that was becoming worryingly common in those days, and he was Caesar's uncle (his beloved mother's husband). This is the reason why he was targeted by Sulla, who had recently exiled Marius and - as effective dictator of Rome - wanted to excise all potential supporters that the general still had. However, Caesar stood up to Sulla, and surprisingly was allowed to go free.

Caesar was stripped of his priesthood, of course, by Sulla - that much you got right - but Caesar never went on a "quest" to restore himself to any religious office. His entry into the office of Pontifex Maximus was purely for political gain and notoriety; he was previously a fairly unremarkable tribune and quaestor. This almost backfired on him, as he soon became embroiled in the Catiline conspiracy and could very well have been thrown in with Catiline and his lot and lost all that he'd gained. Losing the title of Flamen Dialis was actually a blessing for Caesar, as that office would have completely barred him from being a governor or a military commander, two of the things that raised him up to power.

In the Triumvirate, Caesar was certainly not the political influence of the three - he was nothing, really, other than a good diplomat who had an aptitude for convincing people. The important members of the Triumvirate were Crassus and Pompey, the ones with the real power. Crassus, of course, was the very richest man in Rome, likely the richest in the history of the entire state. Pompey, on the other hand, was completely remarkable and profoundly popular. Not much attention is paid to old Pompey; certainly not as much as he deserves. He had popular support, and a reputation as a fierce and successful commander of men. He was willing to push the envelope in political issues, nearly to the point where it seemed that he was going to take over Rome as another dictator - something his "mentor," Sulla, infamously did. One of his greatest acts was to rid the whole Mediterranean of piracy, taking control of the entire Roman feat - again, quite the controversy - but the results he claimed were so spectacular that he was accepted, rather than rejected as Sulla was.

The whole invasion of Gaul was a political tool like none other. It was this campaign which made Caesar famous in Rome, a true celebrity in his time, and greatly divided opinions about him amongst the upper class. He had many supporters, and also many enemies - but all the while he kept up his keen eye for the political situation all around. He addressed not only forces back home in Rome, but also the tribes of Hispania, Gaul, and the Germans beyond the Rhine. It was a political show through and through, and more or less was a resounding triumph for him.

Last of all, Caesar's death may not have even been due to hubris. It probably wasn't, really; he remained a fairly humble and popular ruler during his dictatorship, and the famous assassination was hardly the only one of its kind plotted against him, being only one of many others before it. It's very likely that he knew that his death was going to come soon, which would explain his abrupt change of his own will, favouring Octavian and granting his wealth to the people of Rome. Throughout his life he knew what he was doing, and it just seems unlikely that in the end he'd lose track of all of that, considering how well put together everything was. In death, he didn't really lose anything that he had strived for or accomplished, and his successor ended up being one of the greatest leaders and administrators in all history.

In short, your portrayal of Caesar is bizarre and uninformed and doesn't even fit within the realm of a creative reinterpretation. It's just plain wrong, is what it is.

If you want to learn more about Caesar, in great detail and with great accuracy, I recommend reading Caesar: Life of a Colossus by Adrian Goldsworthy. It's an excellent, enjoyable read, and the most thorough biography of Caesar that you could ever ask for. It's also not that hard to find, either.
Tags: caesar, rome


  1. SeiKeo's Avatar
  2. Five_X's Avatar
    Hi nice to meet you

    I like Rome too thanks for liking Rome as well
  3. Spinach's Avatar
    Well that was an interesting blog.
  4. Five_X's Avatar
    I should reblog this blog. It is a good blog.
  5. Vagrant's Avatar
    Is this a new type of spambot? We've had a few people blogging other quotes in recent weeks.
  6. Seika's Avatar
    Nah, this one's got a human behind it - see the C-a-S thread. Think they just aren't familiar with how little we use the Blog Post thing and/or used it without meaning. Either way, harmless.
  7. ZealousChristian24's Avatar
    ... And it appears I did something wrong. Sorry?
  8. Kirby's Avatar
    Nothing's wrong. It just seems kinda random for this to be blogged out of the blue.
  9. ZealousChristian24's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Kirby
    Nothing's wrong. It just seems kinda random for this to be blogged out of the blue.
    Ah. The reason I blogged it was that I saw it while looking through the make a Servant thread. I liked it, and wanted to be sure I could find it again. I had just read Seika's collection of blog posts, and though it a good idea; I get a place I can easily find it again, and others might stumble upon a well-written argument. Didn't mean to cause a hubbub.
  10. ZidanReign's Avatar
    theres this thing called notepad

    it exists physically in reality and on any device with a GUI interface that uses software

    or you could even save the page

    but ok
  11. Seika's Avatar
    Look, there's nothing wrong with using the blog system this way. It's not usual, but there's no need to get on anyone's case about it. Be nicer to newer members.
  12. ZidanReign's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by ZidanReign
  13. Five_X's Avatar
    Zidan please, stop.