On March 15th, 44 BCE, Gaius Julius Caesar, dictator perpetuo (dictator in perpetuity), was assassinated while attending a meeting of the Senate. The main Senate House in the Forum was being rebuilt and so the meeting took place in the Curia, a hall behind 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 remains of the hall in which he died partly survive in what is known as the Area Sacra di Largo Argentina. This large square, in the heart of the city, is made up of four Republican temples and a little of what survives of Pompey's Theatre.
Although it is the most famous assassination 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 and
small-group walking tours
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