Understanding Julius Caesar

There is a common view of Cesar as a tyrant, and those who opposed him, such as Cato, Cicero, and Brutus, as republican heroes.

One thing is often overlooked in such a viewpoint: Cato, Cicero, and Brutus wanted "liberty" for the senatorial elite. This liberty included the ability of the elite to dispossess the small farmer and exploit the provinces for personal gain. Caesar was a member of that elite, but had broken with them by making direct appeals to "the people."

The fall of the Roman Republic and the rise of the empire was a bad deal for the senatorial families. The average resident of the empire was better off after the change, however.

Nevertheless, we don't see anyone starting the "Caesar Institute."


  1. I heard Brutus was a backstabber.

  2. Good example for demonstrating the complexities of politics.

  3. Gene,

    This post is wrong. There is, in fact, a Caesar Institute (sort of).