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Caesar's Commentaries on the Gallic and Civil Wars, Julius Caesar Introduction

Caesar's Commentaries on the Gallic and Civil Wars

With the Supplementary Books attributed to Hirtius

Including the Alexandrian, African and Spanish Wars

Julius Caesar Introduction

Authorship information:

Suetonius (Suet.12 Caes.Julius.56), in his biography of Julius Caesar states that the Gallic and Civil Wars were written by Caesar, and that the 8th book of the Gallic Wars was written by (Aulus) Hirtius. Suetonius also indicates that either Caesar's friend Oppius, or Hirtius likely wrote about the Alexandrian, African and Spanish wars, but that their authorship was not certain.

Subject of the books:

This is a detailed description of the war campaigns of Julius Caesar, starting from the time that he was in charge of the Roman forces in France (Gaul). Caesar's writting style is that of a detailed factual report, prepared year by year, of the events. The parts not written by him attempt a similiar style, but are not as clean (See the notes of Hortius, at the start of the 8th book of the Gallic Wars). Caesar's writings present himself as a much more balanced and just leader than Suetonius or Plutarch indicate in their biographies of him. Also, the accounts of the army during the Spanish campaign show a more brutal side to his leadership.

Dating of the events (approximate):

Gallic Wars: Book 1 -- -58 B.C.
Gallic Wars: Book 2 -- -57 B.C.
Gallic Wars: Book 3 -- -56 B.C.
Gallic Wars: Book 4 -- -55 B.C.
Gallic Wars: Book 5 -- -54 B.C.
Gallic Wars: Book 6 -- -53 B.C.
Gallic Wars: Book 7 -- -52 B.C.
Gallic Wars: Book 8 -- -51-50 B.C.
Civil Wars: Book 1 -- -50 B.C.
Civil Wars: Book 2 -- -49 B.C.
Civil Wars: Book 3 -- -48-47 B.C.
Alexandrian War
African War
Spanish War


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