Julius Caesar: Book Review

The biography of Julius Caesar, by Antony Kamm.

Julius Caesar was born in 100BC to the aristocratic family of Gaius Caesar and Aurelius. He lost his father when he was sixteen. He got married to Cornelia in 84BC. He refused the order by Sulla to divorce his wife and went on exile to Asia where he learnt “the art of war”.

He returned to Rome after Sulla’s death and was subsequently elected quaestor. After the death of his wife, He married Pompela, who was related to Pompey [one of his political associates]. In 65BC he was elected curule aedile and three years later the praetor.

He became governor of Farther in 61BC and formed the first triumvirate, with Pompey and Crassus, in 60BC. He was elected consul in 59BC and same year married Calprnia. He was appointed governor of Roan Gaul in 58BC and perfected his rule with the conquest of Gallic Gaul. The Roman Civil war began in 59BC and culminated in Caesar’s rise to greater leadership role until on March 15th, 44BC the unprecedented happened.

Caesar’s life is captured in prose through the literary prowess demonstrated by Antony Kamm. He shows his depth of knowledge and insight into the complex nature of Caesar’s story. His study of scholastic work proves useful, as it brings fresh insight into understanding the life and character of this great Roman leader. He shows the military leadership Caesar undertook and how it can influence our understanding of leadership in those days, as different from ours.

Julius Caesar is presented in the context of human relationships he devised and others that shaped his life. Kamm also narrates cultural, religious and military landscape of the Roman republic in light of Caesar’s journey through life. Marius, Sulla, Pompey, Cicero are shown as partners in progress or dishonor. Sevilia and Cleopatra are accorded the plausible position Caesar gave them.

Main Idea

The main idea of the book is that Julius Caesar is more than the stories we have heard; that he is far beyond the myths that surround his life history and that his life is a symbol of balanced service. In the vein, Kamm raises his character to the pinnacle of a superhero worthy of emulation and applaud.

Setting

The book contains 155 pages of well constructed account of a roman hero. It details in smooth prose the “Pilgrim”s progress’ of Gaius Julius Caesar and his life impacted the entire populace pf ancient Rome. It is written in well separated chapter properly linked and facilitated with ease of coherence. This account is well researched to suit the demands of the twenty-first century.

Important Characters

The story of Julius Caesar is an interesting adventure of a bold man whose life is comparable to that of other great people like Alexandra, the Great. “I came, I saw, I conquered” those are his words; they clearly confirm his strength of character and charisma. He lived true to his dream, dedicated to the course he wished and vehement in the pursuit of the same. In his pursuit of honor, the influence of his mother can not be forgotten. He lost his father when he was only sixteen but his mother took him through the painful lessons of life.

Indeed, he is an example of a leader except for the tyrant nature of his leadership style: he led a number of fights to victories against nations with immense military support and ammunitions. There are lesson from every stage of his journey on the Earth, from his growth with his influential parents, to his youth and the concomitant exuberance he enjoyed. His rise to limelight is worthwhile and his fall to betrayal et coup is notable. Cassius acts in conjunction with Brutus culminated in the assassination of Caesar; they suffered for this.

Many people have been endeared by this kind of life. They have attempted to cave a niche for themselves n through the use of words and symbols to re-present this roman general. Julius Caesar’s live, as captured by Plutarch in his historical outlook on lives of notable roman generals, speaks volume that can not be expounded by a single perspective of an individual. As a result, there have been many historical accounts and biographies in honor of Caesar apart from William Shakespeare’s play.

Most Interesting Event

From the historical account of Cesar’s life, many events are important. He refused the order by Sulla to divorce his wife and went on exile to Asia where he learnt “the art of war”. He returned to Rome after Sulla’s death and was subsequently elected quaestor. He later married Pompela, who was related to Pompey [one of his political associates].

In 65BC he was elected curule aedile and three years later the praetor.

He became governor of Farther in 61BC and formed the first triumvirate He was elected consul in 59BC. He was appointed governor of Roan Gaul in 58BC and perfected his rule with the conquest of Gallic Gaul.

The Roman Civil war began in 59BC and culminated in Caesar’s rise to greater leadership role until on March 15th, 44BC. After his death, Rome continued to war for many years.

The most important was his assassination by a “coup” planned by Cassius, supported by Marcus Brutus, his close friend, and other senators.

Cassius convinces Brutus of the need to eliminate Julius Caesar because of the possibility of turning Rome’s republic into a monarchy through Caesar’s lineage. The senators agree to this. Cesar approaches senate in the morning of the assassination; on his way, he was warned by a soothsayer to “Beware of the Ides of March”. He ignores the warning and heads for the Senate where he rejects a request brought before him, as expected. There, he was beaten to death. He however notices the presence of Brutus among his killers, and exclaims the popular clause: ‘Et tu, Brutus’ meaning “And you, Brutus”.

Thereafter, Brutus delivers a logical speech at his funeral to convince the Roman people of the reason for Caesar’s assassination which was followed closely by the powerful and excellent rhetoric of Marcus Antonio that moves the mob to drive Marcus and his cohorts from Rome. The triumvirate comprising Marcus Antonio, Octavius and Aemilus become the rulers of Rome and fights to victory with the army of the assassinators; Brutus and Cassius commits suicide in the face of defeat.

Concluding Sentence

Kamm has proved his ability to synthesize facts from complex details into smooth prose. And Julius Caesar remains “head of state in ancient or modern times applied himself so assiduously to such a range of physical and intellectual activities, and excelled at them all”.

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14 Comments
  1. samiha
    Posted February 1, 2009 at 4:37 am

    i like how you expalined a lot on him but i think you should also have added a negative part of him

  2. surbhi
    Posted May 20, 2010 at 7:47 am

    it does not provide sufficient data require for a student for review writing.

  3. Posted July 17, 2010 at 12:18 am

    Thanks Samiha for the comment. I’d consider it.
    Surbhi, I understand ur position, thanks for the comment.

  4. Posted August 13, 2010 at 8:32 pm

    bravo, u are wonderful, carefully analyzed

  5. Posted November 1, 2010 at 7:53 am

    Thanks.

  6. Posted November 13, 2010 at 10:07 am

    good

  7. ved choupane
    Posted December 24, 2010 at 9:34 am

    i haven’t read this book but someone have told me the story. it was quite intresting.the story was bravo,outstanding ajun kai sangu.

  8. dichingdaching
    Posted December 24, 2010 at 9:37 am

    a bhau book review sathi kaee tar de.

  9. dhale
    Posted December 24, 2010 at 9:38 am

    give me information.

  10. Posted January 7, 2011 at 3:00 am

    bravo

  11. vikas
    Posted July 2, 2011 at 7:52 am

    should add more information so that it is easy to take review and should be clear.

  12. Posted October 16, 2011 at 9:47 am

    ok, thankss for all your comments

  13. ankur bagai
    Posted April 11, 2012 at 11:45 am

    Great! Review I am Impressed but u should some more points in it.

  14. Rekha
    Posted April 29, 2012 at 6:56 am

    not enough information for students as a review provide more information……………Rekha

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