Julius Caesar was a Roman statesman, author, and general. He was one of the best and most accomplished military commanders in history. Despite never being an emperor, Caesar was a consul and later dictator for life. He was immensely popular with the citizens of Rome. 

His death, on the Ides of March (15 March 44 BC), was a catalyst for the end of the Roman Republic and the beginning of the Roman Empire. 

Caesar was born in 100 BC as Gaius Julius Caesar. He was born into a patrician family of the gens Julia, which claimed descent from Julus, son of the legendary Trojan prince Aeneas, supposedly the son of the goddess Venus. His father, also named Gaius Julius Caesar, was the Roman governor of Asia. 

He joined the army at a young age after the death of his father and served with distinction, being awarded the Civic Crown for his part in the Siege of Mytilene. He served under the command of Marcus Minucius Thermus in Asia and Servilius Isauricus in Cilicia.

He then returned to Rome where he became an accomplished legal advocate known for prosecuting graft and corruption among Roman governors, a common problem of the time.

While crossing the Aegean Sea in 75 BC, he was kidnapped by pirates, who demanded 20 “talents” of silver, a unit of weight during that era, for his release. Caesar rebuked the pirates saying they should have demanded 50 talents instead.

Upon his release, he threatened them all crucifixion upon his release, which the pirates scoffed at as a joke. But he did just that. Once he returned to Rome, he raised a fleet, caught the pirates, and had them all crucified — but first had their throats cut as a sign of leniency.

Recalled to the army, he quelled an uprising from the eastern areas of Asia and was made a military tribune.