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Julius Caesar

Written by: Philip Freeman
Narrated by: James Cameron Stewart
Length: 14 hrs and 44 mins

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Publisher's Summary

More than 2,000 years after his death, Julius Caesar remains one of the great figures of history. He shaped Rome for generations, and his name became a synonym for "emperor" - not only in Rome but as far away as Germany and Russia. He is best known as the general who defeated the Gauls and doubled the size of Rome's territories. But, as Philip Freeman describes in this fascinating new biography, Caesar was also a brilliant orator, an accomplished writer, a skilled politician, and much more.   

Julius Caesar was a complex man, both hero and villain. He possessed great courage, ambition, honor, and vanity. Born into a noble family that had long been in decline, he advanced his career cunningly, beginning as a priest and eventually becoming Rome's leading general. He made alliances with his rivals and then discarded them when it suited him. He was a spokesman for the ordinary people of Rome, who rallied around him time and again, but he profited enormously from his conquests and lived opulently. Eventually he was murdered in one of the most famous assassinations in history.   

In this splendid biography, Freeman presents Julius Caesar in all his dimensions and contradictions. This book will captivate listeners discovering Caesar and ancient Rome for the first time, as well as those who have a deep interest in the classical world.

©2008 Philip Freeman (P)2019 Tantor

What the critics say

“[Freeman] takes the reader through every dizzying thrill and spill. The scholar will find much to admire in this book, but, better still, the newcomer to ancient Rome will turn its pages with excitement, enlightenment - and sheer narrative suspense.” (Anthony Everitt, author of Augustus and Cicero)

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  • Anonymous User
  • 2019-09-13

Great Caesar Biography!

I'm a big Caesar scholar. While this book didn't go into great details about Caesar's Campaigns(like the Munda Campaign) it had all the details one needs to know about Caesar. It also highlighted a few anecdotes that other authors do not, such as Caesar's relationship with a poet. This book also touched on Caesar's early Spanish Campaigns which other authors just ignore altogether. My favorite Caesar Biography is J.F.C Fuller's Caesar and it is what I measure all other Caesar Biographies by, this one falls short of it but it is a great Biography and should be read/listened to by all Caesar admirers. Being an avid reader of the American Revolution I loved the ending.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
  • FarleyFarley
  • 2019-10-22

Not very good...

Adrian Goldsworthy's biography of Julius Caesar -- Caesar: Life of a Colossus -- is infinitely better. Goldsworthy is scholarly but accessible. He always tries to sift the evidence so as not to include the too-pat stories of which the ancient sources are full. He tries to show us the real man behind the stories. And he is an excellent writer. You come away with the feeling that you really know the man about as well as he can be known.

Philip Freeman in his Julius Caesar does way too little sifting. He also has unaccountably decided -- perhaps at the prodding of an editor? -- that some parts of the monumental civil war are boring and not of interest to the reader (like most of it). Caesar's affair with Cleopatra take center stage. A bad decision.

This is the first time I've ever read or listened to a touted (by some) book to see how it compares to a book that I've much admired. i repeated the experience with another recent Audible title. it was enlightening, but the experiment is over. Some books just aren't worth reading.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful