On the Ides of March (March 15th), 44 BCE, Gaius Julius Caesar, dictator perpetuo (dictator in perpetuity), was assassinated while attending a meeting of the Senate. The curia, or senate house, in the forum, was being rebuilt following a fire and so the meeting took place in a room that was part of the colonnaded gardens of the Theatre of Pompey.
Just as he had ascended his golden throne, Caesar was attacked by a group of his fellow senators, a conspiracy led by Gaius Cassius Longinus and Marcus Junius Brutus. The most powerful man in Rome was stabbed a total of twenty-three times. Contrary to the last words 'Et tu, Brute', given to him by Shakespeare, most Roman writers state that Caesar said nothing, but merely covered his face with his toga before dying.
The room in which Caesar died partly survives in Largo di Torre Argentina. This large square, in the heart of the city, is mostly made up of the remains of four ancient temples, which date back to the time of Roman Republic.
Although the assassination of Julius Caesar is the most famous in history, there is not so much as a plaque to mark the spot where it took place!
My name is David Lown and I am an art historian from Cambridge, England. Since 2001 I have lived in Italy, where I run private walking tours of Rome.
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