Humanities › History & Culture Why Was Julius Caesar So Important? Important Accomplishments of the Roman Emperor Share Flipboard Email Print History & Culture Ancient History and Culture Rome Figures & Events Ancient Languages Greece Egypt Asia Mythology & Religion American History African American History African History Asian History European History Genealogy Inventions Latin American History Medieval & Renaissance History Military History The 20th Century Women's History View More By N.S. Gill Ancient History and Latin Expert M.A., Linguistics, University of Minnesota B.A., Latin, University of Minnesota N.S. Gill is a Latinist, writer, and teacher of ancient history and Latin. She has been featured by NPR and National Geographic for her ancient history expertise. our editorial process N.S. Gill Updated October 29, 2019 Julius Caesar (100—44 BCE) changed Rome forever. He dodged proscription and pirates, changed the calendar and the army. Admittedly a womanizer himself, he dismissed his wife for suspicious behavior, wrote (bad) poetry and a third person account of the wars he waged, started a civil war, conquered the area of modern France, and made a stab at Britain. He was instrumental in the Roman change in government from a Republican form to one where an individual (in Rome's case, an emperor or "caesar") ruled for life. Julius Caesar also accomplished several important things in his very active fifty-six years that impacted the world for centuries after his death. 01 of 04 Caesar as a Roman Ruler Public Domain/Wikipedia. Julius Caesar (July 12/13, 100 BCE–March 15, 44 BCE) may have been the greatest man of all times. By the age of 40, Caesar had been a widower, divorcé, governor (propraetor) of Further Spain, captured by pirates, hailed imperator by adoring troops, acted as quaestor, aedile, and consul, and was elected pontifex maximus. What was left for his remaining years? The famous events for which Julius Caesar is most well-known include the Triumvirate, military victories in Gaul, the dictatorship, civil war, and, finally, assassination at the hands of his political enemies. 02 of 04 Fixing a Broken Calendar Wikipedia. At the time of his rule, the Roman calendar tracking days and months of the year was a confused mess, exploited by politicians who added days and months at will. And no wonder: the calendar was based on an unreliable lunar system that superstitiously avoided even numbers. By the first century BCE, the months of the calendar no longer even matched the seasons they were named for. To create a new calendar for Rome, Caesar used the Egyptian system of chronological time keeping. The Egyptian and new Roman calendars each had 365.25 days, closely approximating the earth's spin. Caesar set alternating months of 30 and 31 days with February at 29 days and adding an extra day every four years. The Julian calendar remained in place until it too had grown out of step with reality, replaced by the Gregorian calendar in the 16th century CE. 03 of 04 Publishing the First Political News Sheet Hachephotography / Getty Images The Acta Diurna ("Daily Gazette" in Latin), also known as the Acta Diurna Populi Romani ("Daily Acts of the Roman People"), was a daily report of the ongoings of the Roman senate. The small daily bulletin aimed to give to the citizens the news of the empire, especially the happenings around Rome. The Acta included the actions and speeches of prominent Romans, gave accounts of the progress of trials, judgments of the court, public decrees, proclamations, resolutions, and catastrophic events. First published in 59 BCE, the Acta was circulated to the rich and powerful in the empire, and each issue was also posted in public places for citizens to read. Written on papyri, few fragments of the Acta exist, but the Roman historian Tacitus used them as a source for his histories. It finally ceased publication two centuries later. 04 of 04 Writing the First Long-Lived Extortion Law bauhaus1000 / Getty Images Caesar's Lex Iulia De Repetundis (The Extortion Law of the Julians) was not the first law against extortion: that is generally cited as the Lex Bembina Repetundarum, and usually attributed to Gaius Gracchus in 95 BCE. Caesar's extortion law remained a fundamental guide for the conduct of Roman magistrates for at least the next five centuries. Written in 59 BCE, the law restricted the number of gifts that a magistrate could receive during his term in a province and ensured that governors had their accounts balanced when they left. Sources Dando-Collins, Stephen. "Caesar's Legion: The Epic Saga of Julius Caesar's Elite Tenth Legion and the Armies of Rome." New York: Wiley, 2004. Fry, Plantagenet Somerset Fry. "Great Caesar." New York: Collins, 1974. Oost, Stewart Irvin . The Date of the Lex Iulia De Repetundis. The American Journal of Philology 77.1(1956):19-28.Giffard, C.Anthony. "Ancient Rome's Daily Gazette." Journalism History 2:4(1975):106.Luthra Renee. (ed). 2009. "Journalism And Mass Communication—Volume I." Oxford, England: Eolss Publishers Co Ltd. Julius Caesar is one of those people whose name we should all recognize.