How Did Julius Caesar Come to Power?

Julius Caesar rose to power by forming an alliance with Pompey, a general, and Crassus, an affluent patrician. The three men seized control over the Roman Republic in 59 B.C. Eventually, the first triumvirate came to an end, and Julius Caesar made himself the absolute ruler of the territory.

The alliance between Julius Caesar, Crassus and Pompey started at a time when Caesar’s reputation was growing due to his military success. Pompey and Caesar strengthened their relationship when Caesar’s daughter married Pompey. Her death a few years later weakened the personal alliance between Pompey and Caesar. Furthermore, the Parthian army attacked the Roman army and killed Crassus in 53 B.C. Meanwhile, Caesar’s power continued to grow, and laws were modified to suit his needs.

Some members of the Roman senate accused Caesar of treason and ordered him to return to Rome without his army. However, Caesar came back to Rome with his army, and he fought the Roman forces led by Pompey that were sent to meet him. After Pompey's defeat, he tried to seek safety in Egypt and instead was killed. Upon Caesar's return a few years later, he became the absolute ruler of Rome and its territories.

As the dictator for life, Caesar enacted several reforms, such as granting citizenship to many colonials and reducing the senate’s power. In addition, he established a network of spies and implemented a policy to provide land to poor Romans. He also put his image on coins. Even though Romans despised monarchies, Caesar was offered the title of rex, or king. His popularity took a turn, and in 44 B.C., 60 senators stabbed him to death.