An Emperor and His Rubicon

Bitossi Italian Modernist Hand-Impressed Red Vase (LEO Design)

Imagine a world political leader using bravado, war and aggression to generate popular support with his base.  That's just what Julius Caesar did—and July is named after him.

Gaius Julius Caesar was born on the 12th (or 13th) of July in the year 100 BC.  He distinguished himself—amongst the Populares, at least—during the Gallic Wars.  As a Roman General, Julius Caesar led (many unauthorized) invasions into what is modern-day France and Belgium, taking the territory and expanding the Roman borders up to the English Channel and over to the Rhine.  While these cavalier exploits made him wildly popular with the Roman peasants, it displeased the elite Roman Senate immensely.  Though Caesar promoted these attacks as preventative ("attack them before they can attack us"), most historians conclude that the general was "showboating" for his base.  Fire and Fury. And it worked.

The Senate (of what was then The Roman Republic) ordered General Caesar to end his warmongering and report back to Rome.  Once decommissioned, however, Caesar was now susceptible to prosecution for his war crimes.  He made the bold decision to attack Rome—crossing the Rubicon River with his forces which signaled his hostile intentions.  Thus began the Great Roman Civil War.

The Civil War lasted five years.  Caesar won, crowned himself Dictator Perpetuo ("Dictator for Life") and ended the (nearly) 500 year old Roman Republic.  Soon Rome would the capital of the Roman Empire.

Julius Caesar was assassinated on The Ides of March, 15 March 44 BC.  A new civil war ensued, ultimately to be won by Caesar's nephew (whom he adopted as his son), Octavius (Augustus) Caesar.  Augustus carried-on his uncle/father's Empire building into the time of Christ.

The Italian Modernist vase, shown above, was made by Bitossi (in Montelupo, outside of Florence, Italy) some 60 miles from the Rubicon River.  It is also ruby red—in honor of July's precious birthstone.  Please click on the photo above to learn more about it.


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