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I was born free as Caesar; so were you:
We both have fed as well, as we can both
Endure the winter’s cold as well as he. William Shakespeare, Julius Caesar I ii 97
Ye gods, it doth amaze me.
A man of such a feeble temper should
So get the start of the majestic world,
As bear the palm along. ibid. I ii 128
Why, man, he doth bestride the narrow world
Like a Colossus; and we petty men
Walk under his huge legs, and peep about
To find ourselves dishonourable graves.
Men at such times are masters of their own fates:
The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars,
But in ourselves, that we are underlings. ibid. I ii 134
When could they say, till now, that talked of Rome,
That her wide walls encompassed but one man?
Now is it Rome indeed and room enough,
When there is in it but one only man. ibid. I ii 153
Let us be sacrificers, but not butchers, Caius,
We all stand up against the spirit of Caesar,
And in the spirit of men there is no blood ...
Let’s carve him as a dish fit for the gods,
Not hew him as a carcass fit for hounds. ibid. II i 166-168 & 173-174
When beggars die, there are no comets seen;
The heavens themselves blaze forth the death of princes. ibid. II ii 30
O mighty Caesar! dost thou lie so low?
Are all thy conquests, glories, triumphs, spoils,
Shrunk to this little measure? ibid. III i 148
Live a thousand years,
I shall not find myself so apt to die:
No place will please me so, no mean of death,
As here by Caesar, and by you cut off,
The choice and master spirits of this age. ibid. III i 159
O! pardon me, thou bleeding piece of earth,
That I am meek and gentle with these butchers;
Thou art the ruins of the noblest man
That ever lived in the tide of times. ibid. III i 254
But yesterday the word of Caesar might
Have stood against the world: now lies he there.
And none so poor to do him reverence. ibid. III ii 124
He hath left you all his walks,
His private arbours, and new-planted orchards,
On this side Tiber; he hath left them you,
And to your heirs for ever; common pleasures,
To walk abroad, and recreate yourselves. ibid. III ii 252
Here was a Caesar! when comes such another? ibid. III ii 257
Let me tell you, Cassius, you yourself
Are much condemned to have an itching palm. ibid. IV iii 7
This was the noblest Roman of them all;
All the conspirators save only he
Did that they did in envy of great Caesar;
He only in a general honest thought
And common good to all, made one of them.
His life was gentle, and the elements
So mixed in him that Nature might stand up
And say to all the world, ‘This was a man!’ ibid. V v 68
In the most high and palmy state of Rome,
A little ere the mightiest Julius fell,
The graves stood tenantless and the sheeted dead
Did squeak and gibber in the Roman streets. William Shakespeare, Hamlet I i 113
Let Rome in Tiber melt, and the wide arch
Of the ranged empire fall. Here is my space.
Kingdoms are clay. William Shakespeare, Anthony & Cleopatra I i 33
What’s brave, what’s noble,
Let’s do it after the high Roman fashion,
And make death proud to take us. ibid. IV xiii 86
My desolation does begin to make
A better life. ’Tis paltry to be Caesar;
Not being Fortune, he’s but Fortune’s knave,
A minister of her will. ibid. V ii 1
The imperial capital: Rome. The largest city on Earth. Population 1,000,000. Mankind: The Story of All of Us III, History Channel 2012
The State provides hand-outs to the poor. ibid.
The aqueduct is powered by gravity: it needs to drop one foot in every three hundred. ibid.
Rome’s aqueducts will deliver almost a billion litres of water a day. ibid.
Rome is the most advanced city in the world. Apartment blocks up to six stories high. ibid.
A police force, a fire brigade and a postal service. ibid.
Rome was found on an ideal of masculinity. Bettany Hughes, Divine Women I: When God Was a Girl, BBC 2012
Rome also permitted the influence of women in the religious sphere. Bettany Hughes, Divine Women II: Handmaids of the Gods
Theodora was born in 6th century A.D. in the great city of Constantinople. Bettany Hughes, Divine Women III: War of the Word
Ancient Rome: one of the greatest superpowers in history whose far-reaching legacy continues to shape our lives. For close on a thousand years the Romans dominated the known world: theirs was an extraordinary empire. Bettany Hughes, The Eight Days that Made Rome e1: Hannibal’s Last Stand Channel 5 2017
A day when a Roman general, Publius Cornelius Scipio, went head to head with the legendary Hannibal and the mighty empire of Carthage in a battle that would determine whether Rome really had the muscle to rule the ancient world. ibid.
The Romans fetishised violence and aggression and ambition. ibid.
This was a vast protection racket in all but name. ibid.
You were either with them or against them. ibid.
Hannibal himself escaped the slaughter, riding straight for Carthage, a city he’d not seen for thirty-six years. ibid.
Razed Carthage to the ground. ibid.
Also ruled through violence and oppression. Rome’s rise to greatness was inevitable. Bettany Hughes, The Eight Days that Made Rome e2: The Spartacus Revolt
This is the day in the summer of 73 B.C. when a band of slaves took on the might of Rome. They were led by one of the most legendary names in history, Spartacus. ibid.
They knew that slaves were potential insurgents, and one day in 73 B.C. their worst fears were realised. ibid.
A group of highly trained specialist slaves …. a full-blown slave revolt. ibid.
The protest and the idea of freedom is contagious. ibid.
Two thirds of the slave army was slaughtered. ibid.
Assemblies and elections were open to ordinary citizens, but the powerful Senate was dominated by a few elite families. As a republic, Rome had gone from strength to strength. Bettany Hughes, The Eight Days that Made Rome e3: Crossing the Rubicon
Caesar v Germanic tribes: what followed was one of the most vicious mass killings in history. ibid.
Caesar had absolutely no intention of giving up the source of his power. ibid.
An epic showdown loomed. ibid.