What really is the Ides of March and why should we beware of it? Also, why does it look so good on custom coins?
Every year on March 15th, people all over the world celebrate what has become known as the ‘Ides of March’, but for many different reasons. Throughout history this has been a day of tragedy, celebration, and religious observances.
Originally, March was the first month of the year on the earliest Julian calendar. Beginning at the first of the month and lasting until the 15th Romans observed holiday celebrations of the new year.
However, this famous date in history became notorious as the date of the betrayal of Brutus that led to the assassination of Julius Caesar in 44 BC. His death made the Ides of March a turning point in Roman history and is one of the events that marked the transition from the Roman Republic to the Roman Empire.
After having killed Julius Caesar, the leader of the pro-Republican liberty power base Marcus Brutus began striking the Silver Denarius coin. The coins were made out of looted silver and used to pay his ever-growing army.
The dime sized coin depicts the head of Brutus on one side, and on the reverse depicts the dome shaped liberty cap flanked by two drawn daggers and the Latin inscription EID MAR, which translated to “Ides of March”. The two drawn daggers are meant to be a reminder of Brutus killing Julius and his intention to free Rome.
Sadly for Brutus the revolution did not go as planned and in a twist of fate those same daggers were used to kill him. The victors of the battle and new rulers of Rome, Mark Antony and Octavian, saw to it that those coins became extinct by recalling them and melting them down. However, a few managed to escape this recall and have become a very rare find. They are now one of the most valuable and expensive collectible coins in the world. Only a few remain, tucked away in private collections or on display in museums.
Do you want to memorialize an event that was special or momentous in your life? How about a custom coin or medallion? We can help. Browse our website or call 877-290-9290 to talk to one of our expert artists who can help you come up with the perfect design for your custom coin.