The Ides of March

15 Mar 2022
by Fight Club Team

On this day, Ides/March 44BC, Julius Caesar died. As I'm sure you all know.

It was a turning point in Roman history, resulting in the beginning of the civil war that led to the rise of his heir, Octavian (who was known as Augustus later)

Popularised and dramatised by Shakespeare in his play Julius Caesar, the assassination was a sordid affair. As many as 60 of Caesar's enemies partook in the evisceration, as well as some (ex)friends. Et tu Brute?

It's no coincidence that the assassination took place on the Ides of March, as they were a special date by which a Roman should settle their debts. And boy did the senate have a debt to settle with Caesar.

Not all the conspirators were able to get a thrust in, but 23 wounds were managed, and that (unsurprisingly) was enough to finish poor Jules off.

Unanticipated by the conspirators, however, was the ire Caesar's death would invoke with the middle and lower classes of Rome, with whom Caesar was incredibly revered. They didn't take kindly to their beloved leader being sliced up by some aristocrats.

It seemed that Mark Antony (Julius' friend and advisor) capitalised on this grief induced rage, starting a large fire in Rome at Caesar's funeral and laying the groundwork with Octavian for the five civil wars to come.

So, if you've any debts to settle, you'd better do them right now, for The Ides have come, but they have not yet passed. Or, if you can't resolve them today, for the love of Vesta avoid the Theatre of Pompey, please.