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Word Count: 762
Julius Caesar was born into a patrician family in Rome but early on he opposed the rule of a small conservative group His family belonged to the old nobility the patrician order and several of his ancestors had won distinction in the service of the state Caesar was the most prominent man of all history for this genius transcendent in three directions in politics war and literature Caesars life was cast in a period with great changes for the Roman State Both strength and security had given place to violent party strife which threatened the existence of government in Rome The city was crowded with turbulent throngs of poor citizens who received grain from the public treasury at a very low rate Notwithstanding the risk and uncertainty politics were thought the only field of activity as a young Roman man of standing Caesar became a follower of Gaius Marius a great popular leader and Sulla the aristocratic dictator of Rome forced Caesar to leave Rome Julia Caesar went to Greece to study philosophy but was later permitted to return to Rome where he was occupied a number of public offices In 61 BC he became governor of a Spanish province When Julia returned to Rome he allied himself with Pompey and crassus in the First Triumvirate and was elected consul in 59 BC In 58 BC Caesar began a number of military campaigns in Gaul France campaigns that established his military genius During Caesar nine years in Gaul he lost two battles he conQuered all territory east to the Rhine and invaded Britain twice After the Roman Senate instructed him in 49 BC to lay down his command he crossed the Rubicon a stream that separated his provinces from Italy With this act Caesar provoked a civil war which was his greatest step toward grasping supreme power He had himself appointed dictator and consul as well as tribune for life He followed Pompey
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