The Civil Wars

Gaius Julius Caesar

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The Civil Wars

The Civil Wars A military leader of legendary genius Caesar was also a great writer recording the events of his life with incomparable immediacy and power The Civil War is a tense and gripping depiction of his str

  • Title: The Civil Wars
  • Author: Gaius Julius Caesar
  • ISBN: null
  • Page: 357
  • Format: Hardcover
  • A military leader of legendary genius, Caesar was also a great writer, recording the events of his life with incomparable immediacy and power The Civil War is a tense and gripping depiction of his struggle with Pompey over the leadership of Republican Rome a conflict that spanned the entire Roman world, from Gaul and Spain to Asia and Africa Where Caesar s own account lA military leader of legendary genius, Caesar was also a great writer, recording the events of his life with incomparable immediacy and power The Civil War is a tense and gripping depiction of his struggle with Pompey over the leadership of Republican Rome a conflict that spanned the entire Roman world, from Gaul and Spain to Asia and Africa Where Caesar s own account leaves off in 48 BC, his lieutenants take up the history, describing the vital battles of Munda, Spain and Thapsus, and the installation of Cleopatra, later Caesar s mistress, as Queen of Egypt Together these narratives paint a full picture of the events that brought Caesar supreme power and paved the way for his assassination only months later.

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    One thought on “The Civil Wars

    1. Jan-Maat on said:

      Asterix led me to The Gallic War and from the conquest of Gaul I tumbled into The Civil War. As it happened so did Caesar so that made two of us.This volume contains Caesar's commentary on the Civil War and three continuations. The conflict opens with Caesar descending into Italy with his veteran forces, Pompey flees Italy with some levies to Greece. Caesar departs to Spain where he defeats Pompey's forces there and returns to Italy. This takes about a year. Caesar crosses to Greece, but Pompey' [...]

    2. Darwin8u on said:

      Men are nearly always willing to believe what they wish."― Julius CaesarWell-behaved Romans seldom Make HistoryWar is hell obviously, but a civil war is a unique form of Hades (a Haidēs of many shaidēs?). The sides are more amorphous, permeable, ambiguous. There is a reluctance to kill a soldier that last year you considered a friend or a brother. While war often requires thinking beyond strategy and tactics, a civil war pushes those skills to the extreme. How do you limit the blood lust of [...]

    3. Jon(athan) Nakapalau on said:

      I am sure I would have enjoyed this book even more if only I brushed up on my Roman history. But I still enjoyed the attention to detail that Caesar practiced and his magnanimity towards those he defeated. Counting the times a shield was pierced by arrows as a sign of courage should be a term we use to this day: "Check my shield, count the arrowsI did my best at the meeting."

    4. Brian on said:

      This book contains more than Caesar's writings on the Civil War; "The Alexandrian War", "The African War", "The Spanish War" are also included in this Penguin Classics edition - none of those pieces penned by him. I only read the first piece, the appendices, and the insightful intro written by Jane Gardner (also providing an excellent and easy to read translation). I'm happy that I first read Caesar's Gallic Wars - getting a feeling for his writing style helped with this work, which I found a bi [...]

    5. Tyler Windham on said:

      "Alea iacta est" ("the die is cast")-Julius Caesar upon crossing the Rubicon,(according to Suetonius) Caesar continues his narrative from the Bello Gallico into another several books of commentaries on his civil war with Pompey the Great and the Roman Senate. Caesar does not dwell long on the causes of the civil war but rests that point upon saying that his rights and honor had been violated and his attempts to find a compromise (and he did attempt) were met with a declaration by the senate that [...]

    6. Brian on said:

      This lone star is not for Caesar, it is for this wretched translation. After slogging through 70 or so pages feeling like my brain was coated in molasses, I decided to try a different translation. Right choice.For example, here's how this volume translates a particular section:"He leaves no point unmentioned that he thought adapted their minds to sanity." What a clunker. Here's how the Penguin Classic (translated by Jane Gardner) has it:"He added such further considerations as he thought might s [...]

    7. Jesse on said:

      Caesar, through his own and others' accounts, comes off as an unbelievably merciful general; he pardoned nearly everyone that came into his power, including his eventual assassins, Cassius and Brutus. I could only find one instance, concerning a certain Ligarius during the African War, where he executed a fellow citizen, but the soldier in question had been pardoned previously. This book was written to detail the events of his face-off with Pompey (and when the latter was killed by the Egyptians [...]

    8. Michael Kaplan on said:

      I first read the 'Illustrated' Comic book series of this book and man when I was 11 or 12. In High School I chose Julius Caesar for my senior theme and although I am not a 'history buff' in general the man and his times have a strange affect on my reading habits. So much so that in the past 4-5 years I have collected 180 books, both Novel and biography regarding Caesar and the Roman Republic. Maureen Mccullough's 'fictional' Roman series was the clincher for me, so much so, that I also collect r [...]

    9. Bruce on said:

      Caesar’s The Civil Wars covers the period in Roman history from 49 to 48 BCE, and its primary protagonists are Julius Caesar himself and his rival, Pompey. It describes the early tensions between the two generals, culminating in Caesar’s crossing of the Rubicon, and it ends with the murder of Pompey in Alexandria and with the events leading up to the Alexandrine War. It includes Caesar’s march on Rome and the early Hispanian campaign as well as the subsequent Greek and African campaigns. T [...]

    10. R.M.F Brown on said:

      An army marches on its stomachLike innumerable warlords before him, Napoleon Bonaparte recognised that logistics were the lifeblood of any military campaign. Success or failure could hang by the thread of an adequate or inadequate level of supply. Imagine Agincourt if Henry's men had exhausted their supply of arrows. Consider Rourke's drift if the redcoats had frittered away their ammunition supply. Essential though they are to the conduct of war, they are also as dry as the proverbial bone. In [...]

    11. Francesca on said:

      nam quae volumus ea credimus libenter et quae sentimus ipsi reliquos sentire speramusperché crediamo volentieri ciò che speriamo e speriamo che gli altri provino ciò che noi stessi proviamoLa guerra civileCesareAbbandonato il progetto di leggere l'opera in traduzione fatta de me medesima (purtroppo il mio latino è molto più che arrugginito sob!) mi sono “rassegnata” a leggerla nella bella versione offertami dall'edizione Bur Classici Greci e Latini, a cura di Massimo Bruno.Suppongo che [...]

    12. Caroline on said:

      See my review of The Gallic Wars. This wasn’t quite as interesting as the Gallic Wars, but still worth while. Here, intrigue and alliances on Pompey’s side mirror the shifting alliances of the tribes in Gaul to some extent, but the sadness of Roman troops ordered to fight each other hangs over everything.

    13. Joyce Lagow on said:

      Julius Caesar's 3 books of commentaries on the Civil War between his forces and those of Gnaius Pompeius (Pompey) for control of Rome.[return][return]Caesar, of course, had no idea that he would have an audience 2000 years later who would be unfamiliar with the cast of characters. As a result, the opening pages of The Civil Wars are populated with names that, to those unfamiliar with the politicians and military personages of the day, will slow down reading. Nevertheless, the prose is clear, str [...]

    14. Robert Palmer on said:

      I first read excerpts from The Gallic War in high school Latin. Then in college, my fellow ROTC cadets and I were encouraged to read as much military history as possible, including Caesar's Gallic War.Now, as a mature adult with a strong interest in history, I decided to read not only The Gallic War, but Caesar's accounts of his other wars. Why? Because Caesar represents a pivotal point in the transition between Roman Republic and Roman Empire, and so I hoped to gain an insight into more than me [...]

    15. Darío on said:

      César es lo mejorcito que ha parido este mundo. Más que gustarme las descripciones bélicas, me he reído con las descripciones de lo buena gente que es. El amor de mi vida después de M. Antonio.

    16. Ainsley on said:

      More propaganda from the man who did it all. It's a bit annoying to think that Caesar could write as well as this, on top of his many other talents. Essential reading.

    17. Tommy V on said:

      I’ve read this short work (130 pages in paperback) a few times, but it has never left a deep impression on me. That is probably due to the one-sidedness of the story, a result of history as written by the victor. For a different reason, it is sometimes hard to sort out the many names and places Caesar drops into his narrative—he can’t be accused of not being detailed in his account. Fortunately, the Penguin Classics edition I own has a Glossary of Persons and Places in the back to make it [...]

    18. Samuel Nouvellon on said:

      The Civil War - written by Gaius Julius Caesar and three of his followers - recounts the events of the civil war between the Caesar and Pompey the Great, including the latter's defeat and the subsequent "mopping-up" of his partisans in Egypt, Pontus, North Africa and Spain.The book itself is not particularly interesting from a narrative perspective, as it mostly concerns itself with the various military campaigns conducted by Caesar during the war. It should also be noted that this text was writ [...]

    19. Jeremy Perron on said:

      History is written by the winners. In this case it is truer then most, however, I do not believe one should naturally discount it for that reason, but it does need to be mentioned. With that said, this second famous work by Julius Caesar is a remarkable read. It is great political document where Caesar not only reports on the events that happened but also presents his case to why his cause should prevail. The war was caused by a political situation that had boiling for years and was now going to [...]

    20. David Seals on said:

      Invaluable not only as first-person eyewitness history to what was really going on in the corrupt Roman Republic that drove such a great man to rebel against it, and institute the phenomenal Pax Romana of 100 years, the greatest in history since the best of the Egyptian pharaohs, but as a realistic view of Caesar and Antony and Cleopatra and who they really were. So much bunk has been written and filmed about them. Caesar mentions Antony frequently as a great soldier and general, loyal, and full [...]

    21. M. Milner on said:

      Casear's The Civil War is actually three related books: a long one by Julius himself on the initial crossing of the Rubicon, the battles in Spain and defeated Pompey in Alexandria. His account ends abruptly, but is continued by anonymous accounts continuing through events in Alexandria, then through northern Africa and finally in Spain. Like his account of the Gallic wars, Casear's section is straight-forward and enthralling, although one should keep his aims in mind: these are not unbiased look [...]

    22. Olethros on said:

      -El zorro relatando el cuidado y la vigilancia del gallinero.-Género. Biografía (en cierto modo, aunque es algo más).Lo que nos cuenta. Descripción, de la mano del propio protagonista, de los eventos políticos que suponen finalmente el estallido de la Segunda Guerra Civil en la Antigua Roma y que nos narra lo sucedido hasta la llegada de César, con sus tropas, a la ciudad de Alejandría.¿Quiere saber más de este libro, sin spoilers? Visite:librosdeolethros/

    23. Andrew Obrigewitsch on said:

      Honestly this book was super dry, but what do you expect from a book written by a general over 2,000 years ago? That Art of War? Well Caesar is not Chinese philosopher, he was well Caesar. Recommended to all history buffs, not so much for anyone else.

    24. Jill Hudson on said:

      Caesar was a genius on every level, including writing his own propaganda. The only problem for the reader is that his dry, deliberately dispassionate style makes for a tough read - and that's in English, without trying to grapple with the Latin!

    25. Alex on said:

      Brilliantly written, with great descriptions of battle strategies that make you feel like you're actually in the field, watching the events.

    26. Goldilocks Reads (Jenna Vahue) on said:

      I read this for my War and Society class that focused on Julius Caesar. This book is about his triumphs in Alexandria, Africa, Spain, and Pharsalus. It's pretty straightforward. This was the best class I've ever taken because Professor Wolters is the shit. This edition is a new translation by John Carter that makes it easier to follow. It's rad for a class but a little dry for pleasure reading. If you can cross the Rubicon, you can muster through this book.

    27. Andrada on said:

      I expected Civil War to be a much more exciting read than the Conquest of Gaul, mostly because it featured more prominent and well known historical figures and events, but Civil War is actually a pretty dry read compared to it. It may very well be because it was unfinished by Caesar himself and perhaps he did not have the chance to polish it as much as he did his previous works. It’s by no means a boring read, but it was not the thrilling experience I previously had with the Conquest of Gaul. [...]

    28. Martti on said:

      Fascinating era, the story of Caesar, Pompeius, Cleopatra, Marcus Antonius, Augustus Octavius, Asterix, Obelix, you know - that gang. Apparently during ancient times important people wrote their own history books, or rather some smart slaves wrote, they dictated. Damn dictators. And as the next book I read right after it about the same period of Roman Civil War pointed out, then a lot was left out and exaggerated by our old boy Iulius. It's a valid piece of historical documentation, you just nee [...]

    29. Jean Poulos on said:

      Caesar’s Civil War covers the period in Roman history from 49 to 48 B.C. The book primarily covers Caesar and his rival Pompey. I was disappointed in the book as I expected this to be a first person account as Julius Caesar was the author. But it is written in the second person more like a textbook. Maybe this is the fault of the translation from Latin to English. The book goes into Caesar’s role as Governor of Gaul; Caesar presents himself as the victim of a conspiracy occurring in Rome led [...]

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