Wednesday, March 17, 2010

The Ides of March--to be feared?

In a word, no. The ides of March were simply and ancient term for the lunar calendar's full moon period, about 2-3 days. But four decades before the birth of Christ, the ides became a portend of horrible things.

On March 15, 44 BC Julius Caesar was murdered by the Senators of Rome. It was the basis for Shakespeare's play: Julius Caesar. While Caesar did many things to anger the senate (oddly marrying Cleopatra when he was already married wasn't one of them), his brutal murder also foretold the downfall of Rome. The Senators quarreled amongst themselves for a portion of greater power--rather like now in the U.S.

Sources: NG:, Ancient Coins: