Julius Caesar, one of the most important politicians and soldiers of ancient Rome, strategic talent, first Roman general to enter the unexplored territories of Britain and Germany, first to attack on two fronts at the same time in the same people; myth. He is all egregious.
He (far from the worn image of an ambitious unscrupulous tyrant), was an idealist who worked and fought for the rights of the Roman people. He did so first as a lawyer, with his gift as a great orator (a period Santiago Posteguillo tells of I am Rome, the best-selling novel in Spain in 2022); later, as a soldier, quaestor of the province of Hispania Ulterior, curul aedile of Rome, propraetor of Hispania, consul (thanks to the support of his two political allies, Pompey and Crassus), senator, proconsul of the provinces of Gaul and, finally, when he returned to Rome, after facing Pharnaces II of Zela and Cleopatra of the enemies of Alexandria, consul and dictator who would have been forever, until 44 BC he was stabbed to death, in the Ides in March, on the balcony of Pompey. Curia. Betrayed.
The generals and senators, some of them friends, conspired by organizing the assassination precisely. According to scholars such as the classics professor at the American University of Cornell, Barry Strauss, gladiators also played an important role, as did some women in the Roman elite. The body of the great Julius Caesar He lost his life lying there, bleeding. After all, it’s like that Augustus He tried to erase from his memory and the senators, the place in the curia where his adoptive father was killed. He did it with a layer of concrete. Under him was one of the most important moments in the history of Rome.
What is it about power that, even knowing that if it is achieved, one will become the object of envy, hatred, and even extermination, many desire it? As a fact: about 70% of Roman emperors died violent deaths.
Julius Caesar came to him. And he showed it. He did this by living a life dedicated to the people, a Robin Hood of rights. The paroxysm of man, walking democracy.
Traveling back in time two thousand years ago, Posteguillo analyzes and criticizes works from that 1st century BC that may be from this 21st century in which we find ourselves. With its principles, agreements, interests and betrayals it leads to reflection. “I always talk about what happened in the past so that people can question the political events that are happening today.” It reminds us of the Roman playwright and comedian Plautus and his habit of criticizing the present around him, setting his stories three centuries ago.
Posteguillo continues. Two millennia. A good way to criticize is to disagree. Now, with Julius Caesar (in other books with his daughter Julia or with the emperor Trajan); perfectly defined characters who portray moments and situations that seem destined to repeat themselves. “History is the actions of people who have the inertia to repeat their actions,” Posteguillo said. I added: It seems, surely, we have not learned. Taking notes and avoiding mistakes is not consolidated as a human art. Despite our brains (sometimes almost just for decoration), we tend to stick to the rock, see the failures of the past, and change them. And thus, empires, prosperity, and peace perish.
Going to Damn Rome and going to specific cases from ancient Rome, Posteguillo explained that “the triumvirate was a great movement of criticism between political enemies to control the Senate that ended very soon.”, Therefore, with a certain presentism, he warns that “we must “Think carefully about the agreements you make because those agreements can end in ways you don’t want them to end.” Maybe it would do the leaders of today to read Posteguillo and, if not, at least listen to him.
In the interview, he discussed Julius Caesar focusing on the Senate, a chamber divided into two parts: the popular (defenders of the people) and the optimates, where Dolabela, whom Julius Caesar accused and brought to trial with his obscene speech, The oratory lives in him; however, this did not stop him from perfecting it. Its goal is to make every speech or intervention persuasive, not defeatist—a kind of dagger in the body of one of the mermaids, Homer. It is in the nature of the great to never stop trying to become greater. It is the art of excellence, enhancing what is exceptional. Be more and better. Hyperbole in itself. He developed it with Greek rhetoric, Apolonio Molón.
However, not everything is smooth. He got his first important position thanks to the money that Crassus lent him for bribes (a practice of buying wills that was widespread at the time and preserved in history). You see, some things never change. Some, like rhetoric, get worse. Who can travel to Rome, walk in the forum, sit in the Senate and listen to those people talking?” I really miss today’s politicians who speak and argue well. “We have to think about reducing the political class,” admitted Posteguillo. Maybe it’s not a bad idea to do this. Of course, in order to do this, we must let’s apply Julius Caesar’s saying, “no training, no knowledge.” Today, perhaps more than ever, we witness the degradation of study, knowledge, and, therefore, reflection.
As he tells Brutus (or, at least, that’s what Shakespeare tells us), “men are masters of their destiny,” even if it sinks. I will vote to improve it.
On the other hand, don’t forget the wise words of Julius Caesar: “divide and conquer.”