Commentarii de religione Divi Iulii vel primordio Christianitatis

Tag: Roman history

We come to bury Caesar! — Begraben wollen wir Caesar!

We come to bury Caesar!

Printing a journal takes its time: almost a year of waiting after peer review… but now the article on the accurate historical date of Julius Caesar’s funeral has been published in the Revue des Études Anciennes… and the conclusions are shaking many foundations… a new image emerges… and after more than 2000 years we have finally buried Caesar. See below for the links to Liberalia tu accusas!.

Begraben wollen wir Caesar!

Eine Zeitschrift zu drucken dauert seine Zeit: fast ein Jahr des Wartens nach dem Peer-Review… aber nun ist der Artikel über das korrekte historische Datum von Julius Caesars Beisetzung in der Revue des Études Anciennes veröffentlicht worden… und die Ergebnisse rütteln an so einigen Fundamenten… ein neues Bild erscheint… und nach mehr als 2000 Jahren haben wir Caesar endlich bestattet. Hier sind die Links zu Liberalia tu accusas!.

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Proofreading Liberalia tu accusas!

We are currently processing the galley proof of our article Liberalia tu accusas! on the correct date of Julius Caesar’s funeral to be published soon in a renowned peer-reviewed journal for ancient history. The postprint version is being edited accordingly. We do not know yet, when we are allowed to republish the article as a PDF online, but it might be as soon as early 2012. We will keep you posted.

Astigi quod Iulienses. The mystery of Astigi and the palm of Munda

Écija revisited: Francesco Carotta has written a new article called Astigi quod Iulienses. El misterio de Astigi y la palmera de Munda. The article is available in Spanish here. From the abstract:

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Sitsim: Julius Caesar’s funeral on the iPhone


Kudos to the developers of a really great iPhone app called Sitsim (short for “situated simulation”), which is being supervised by Gunnar Liestøl, professor at the University of Oslo (above, upper right). The app will deliver augmented reality on mobile devices at historically important sites all around the world. Embedded below is a demonstration video, which includes the funeral ceremony of Julius Caesar as part of the augmented reality on the Forum Romanum in Rome:

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The global debt crisis. Solutions courtesy of Jesus and Caesar

You want to save the world? Avert the imminent global financial collapse predicted for the very near future by experts and snake oil salesmen alike? First you need to take a look at the original Lord’s Prayer. It doesn’t say “forgive us our sins” or “forgive us our trespasses”—it says: “…and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors” (Gospel of Matthew). It is possible that these “debts” were not exclusively meant as financial debts, because the later evangelist Luke did in fact write about “sins”. But within the theory that the historical person behind the Biblical figure Jesus was Julius Caesar, the mention of “debts” and “debtors” is only logical, and therefore to a large extent meant financially, because a partial debt amnesty was a core concept of Caesar’s sweeping economic reforms (leges Iuliae) to solve the devastating financial crisis that had struck the oligarchically ruled and exploited Roman “republic”. Historical Caesarian sources close to the Christianized concept that debts be remitted are for example App. BC 2.13.47 sq., Dio HR 38.7.4, and Suet. Jul. 20.3.2: publicanos remissionem petentis tertia mercedum parte relevavit ac, ne in locatione novorum vectigalium inmoderatius licerentur, propalam monuit. At any rate, the prayer for a remission of debts is perfectly explicable in light of the demand by the Roman populares of Caesar to remit all debts (cf. also Badian 1972, passim, i.a. 102). But Caesar’s macroeconomic revolution went much further.

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Jesus and Caesar: Brief notes on Palm Sunday


We’ve read lots of interpretations of Jesus’ triumphant entry into the City. We’ve read for instance that it was modeled on Roman imperial triumphs. At first glance this would seem like a false notion because Jesus clearly does not enter the city on a chariot, although all other properties do fit the picture, for example the palm branches, the spread garments, the decorated mount, the procession, the triumphant cry, the praising of both the triumphator and the highest god, as well as the entry into the city and into the temple. But it’s a fact that in two of the gospels Jesus enters the city on a young and unbacked horse, a foal, a πωλοc, “whereon never man sat”. That’s right, not on a donkey. Mark and Luke are quite clear about that. Matthew had added his usual midrash and needed to align his Gospel with the LXX, and—so it would seem—he was forced to introduce a second equid for the Old Testament prophecy to make any sense, a donkey, but couldn’t lose the original foal, which results in Jesus riding into the City on two equids at the same time, a foal and a donkey: πωλοc and ονοc. (John revised it further, merged both properties and only speaks of a young donkey, an “ass colt”.) But is that really what the evangelists did? And where’s the connection to Julius Caesar, if the Gospel is really a diegetic transposition of the historical sources on Caesar’s Civil War?

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Quest Historie 1/2010: Theologian Annette Merz has reached the second stage…

…and inadvertently touches the third.

Here’s a kind of Kübler-Ross model for new scientific truths:

  1. disregard (theory is ignored)
  2. combat (theory is fought fiercely and by all means including ridicule)
  3. acceptance (theory is approved, admitted and accepted)

These three stages do not derive from a revolutionary new insight into the scholarly reception of spearhead science and paradigm shifts. In general they may be based on personal experience, and in this context they are specifically quoted from a 2003 review of Francesco Carotta’s book Jezus was Caesar that Dutch historian Thomas von der Dunk published together with this Schopenhauerist paraphrase in Spiegel Historiael,1 an acclaimed and popular journal for history and archaeology. The Dutch magazine Quest however is a totally different kind of beast and belongs to the flashy form of yellow press that publishes popular science as infotainment—or “braintainment”, as the Dutch editors like to call it. On four extensively illustrated pages their offshoot Quest Historie covered Carotta’s theory that the historical Jesus was Julius Caesar, that Jesus Christ is Divus Iulius incognito, and that the Gospel is a diegetic transposition of the historical sources on Caesar’s Civil War.2 And they did so quite well…

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