Myths and legends about hair: Julius Caesar

Apart from his political and military career, Caesar (101-44 BC) stood out as a speaker and writer. He wrote at least one astronomy treatise, another on the Roman republican religion, and a study on Latin, none of which has survived to this day.

According to the Latin historian Suetonius, Caesar seduced numerous women throughout his life and especially those belonging to Roman high society. Caesar’s inclination towards the pleasures of love has also been confirmed by the verses sung by his soldiers on the occasion of his triumph in Rome by the campaigns in Gaul, referred to by Suetonius:

Citizens, watch over your women: we bring in a bald adulterer.

You have fornicated in Gaul with the gold you borrowed in Rome.

Caesar arrived in Egypt accompanied by two legions. After accommodating his men in the royal palace, he prepared to bring order to the difficult internal situation of the Nile country, divided by the confrontation between the two ruling brothers and husbands, Ptolemy XIII and Cleopatra VII. Caesar and Cleopatra maintained an intense and famous love relationship that would bear a son: Caesarion.

Caesar gave the throne to Cleopatra (47 BC), which, together with the presence of the Roman troops in the palace of the pharaohs and the deposition of Ptolemy XIII, caused the people, led by the faithful advisers to the king, to mutiny and try to take the palace.

Caesar starred in one of his great military actions and managed to break through the Egyptian siege to meet with Mitridates, after which the combined forces of the two destroyed the Egyptian troops in a bloody battle in which Ptolemy XIII died. Cleopatra later moved to Rome, where she lived until the death of the dictator.

According to the historian Suetonius, the emperor Gaius Julius Caesar, known for his sobriety and elegance as well as for his coherent political thought, and yet sensitive to physical beauty, asked the Senate for permission to habitually wear the laurel wreath, in order to hide your baldness.

Caesar attended the Senate on the 15th (the ides of March), the date by which the session that would discuss the expedition against the Parthians had been set. Someone held Marco Antonio (who at the time was occupying the consulate along with César) in the Senate anteroom. When Caesar had sat down, they surrounded him and attacked him with their daggers and daggers. He had received 23 stab wounds; possibly only one of them had been fatal.

Caesar’s will bequeathed 300 sesterces to every needy citizen of Rome and gave his Trastevere gardens to the Roman people, which stimulated popular devotion to his figure to impressive extremes; the execution of the tyrannicides was requested and Marco Antonio’s commitment to Caesar’s assassins was rejected, which would ultimately cost him power. As Caesar had no male heirs, it was established in his will that his nephew, Octavius, become his successor. Octavio would carry out the reforms of Caesar and would become the first emperor of Rome, with the name of Caesar Augusto.

Excerpted from “Biographies and Lives. The online bibliographic encyclopedia ”and expanded with chapter 2 of the magnificent book“ Let’s take care of our hair ”by Dr. Ramón Grimalt.

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