They hated him. They wanted him dead.
He was warned that they’d kill him.
His friend tried to save him … but his friend was too late.
Julius Caesar was a doomed man. One fateful day over 2,000 years ago, he entered a senate meeting and sat on his golden throne. A senator stepped forward and grabbed at Caesar’s toga, signaling the start of the attack. A group of senators with daggers quickly surrounded Caesar and began attacking him. Some stabbed him—literally—in the back.
The dictator received 23 blows and collapsed, dead, at the foot of a statue of one of his enemies. As he lay there, his reddish-purple, gold-embroidered toga soaked up his pooling blood. There he lay, the man who only one month before had been declared dictator for life. Felled by his foes—and former friends.
One of those “friends” was Caesar’s protégé Marcus Brutus, whom Caesar asked during the attack, “You, too, my child?” It seems Brutus felt no remorse, however, because after he helped kill Caesar, he issued coins celebrating the assassination.
Today we share with you a less tragic coin: an Imperatorial.
The Imperatorial period in Roman history extends from the beginning of the civil war between Caesar and Pompey in 49 BC and ends in early 27 BC, when Caesar’s adopted heir Octavian was given the title “Augustus,” making him the sole ruler of all Roman territory.
The coinage of this period is a transition between the numismatics of the Republic and the “cult of the Emperors,” which began in the Imperial age. Imperatorial numismatics make bold use of coinage as propaganda, with large-scale portraits of emperors issued during their lifetimes.
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