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Roman and Elizabethan Politics

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Presentation on theme: "Roman and Elizabethan Politics"— Presentation transcript:

1 Roman and Elizabethan Politics
Why do we have to know this? How does it relate to Julius Caesar?

2 Why do we have to know this?
When discussing Julius Caesar, you must know a little about the politics of Ancient Rome and Shakespeare’s Elizabethan England in order to understand the point behind the plot. Who found anything about politics in their webquest the other day?

3 “Why do we have to know this?” -–Roman Politics—
In the time of Ancient Rome (which is when Julius Caesar takes place), Rome was known as a republic. A republic is a form of government that is largely ruled by a Senate: 300 politicians (known as patricians) that are wealthy landowners elected by the people. The Senate in a republic is like the supreme court of our own society: the patricians serve for life and have the power to decree and interpret laws.

4 “Why do we have to know this?” -–Roman Politics—
The people who weren’t patricians were referred to as plebians: the merchants, artisans, and farmers who made up most of the population. The patricians and plebians of the republic were fearful of a “king” figure since the government’s purpose was to embody the wants and needs of the people. The patricians were most scared of a king or dictator because they would lose their influence on the state. Can you predict why there is a plot to kill Caesar?

5 “Why do we have to know this?” -–Elizabethan Politics—
In Shakespeare’s Elizabethan England, the government was quite different from Republic Rome: it was a monarchy, or a government ruled by a king and/or queen. The most important thing about this form of government was the belief in primogeniture. Primogeniture is the right of the eldest child, especially the eldest son, to inherit the entire estate, or country in the state of royalty, of one or both parents.

6 “Why do we have to know this?” -–Elizabethan Politics—
Elizabeth I was the queen at this time. She was the most popular and arguably the best monarch England ever had. She was a monarch in almost every sense of the term; she controlled Parliament, made the Protestant religion (her religion) the national religion, and reformed how the lower class and middle class were treated by the upper class.

7 How does this all relate to Julius Caesar?
Julius Caesar is about the assassination of a ruler and the chaos that follows when there is no known heir to take over. What ends up happening is that an evil, power-hungry triumvirate (three-person ruling class) comes into power by election of the people.

8 “How does this all relate to Julius Caesar?”
In England during Shakespeare’s time, Elizabeth I was known as the Virgin Queen because she had no husband or children. Many people in England were afraid that once Elizabeth died, the country would be in chaos because there was no known heir to the throne and bad rulers would rise to power, just like in Julius Caesar.

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