Julius Caesar was one of the best known and prominent figures of the ancient world. He was not only an extraordinary military commander but a cunning political leader. Caesar greatly expanded the Roman Empire, and his conquests changed the future of Europe. Caesar played a pivotal role in the collapse of the Roman Republic and the emergence of the Imperial system. Caesar upended the Roman world. However, Caesar’s actions angered many Romans that included men he not only knew but considered friends. On the Ides of March, Caesar was assassinated by many of these men.
Why was Caesar murdered at the hands of his fellow citizens? Caesar was killed for three reasons: First, the conspirators wanted to halt the growth in his power. Second, they tried to prevent him from becoming king and destroying the Roman Republic. Finally, some were motivated by personal vengeance.
Caesar was born to a patrician Roman family who had once been very influential in the Republic. However, by the time of Caesar’s birth, their fortunes had declined, and they were no longer particularly prominent. We know little about Caesar’s childhood, but during his teenage years, Rome was unstable. Additionally, the death of his father left him somewhat unprotected.
A bloody civil war between Marius and Sulla forced Caesar to pick sides. Caesar sided with Marius, but when the war shifted in favor of Sulla, Caesar was forced to flee Rome and join the army to avoid execution. Caesar quickly rose through ranks of the military and distinguished himself. Upon the death of Sulla, he returned to Rome and became one of the leaders of the popular party in Rome.