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He always talks about himself in the third person - The Titfield Thunderbolt
Heisenberg might have stayed here
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qatsi
He always talks about himself in the third person
Book Review: The Civil War, by Julius Caesar, and The Alexandrian War, The African War, and The Spanish War, by other hands
What they say in the Asterix books is true. When describing an event at which he was present, he does generally say "Caesar did ..."; though I notice that when relating an event at a distance, he often refers to "our troops" or "our cause". Assuming this is an accurate rendition of the text into English, it's a curious mix. Perhaps any civil war is a confusing situation; the narration, though clear in the detail, doesn't really give a wider picture, though Jane F Gardner's introduction attempts to explain the background at a basic level. It feels as if this text is less propagandistic than The Conquest of Gaul - perhaps because the enemy was composed of Romans rather than barbarians - though there's still enough spin to be notable.

The authors of the continuation texts are unknown; only The Alexandrian War is probably comparable in quality to Caesar's writing. Nevertheless they are useful in providing source reports of the developments in this period of history.

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strange_complex From: strange_complex Date: December 30th, 2008 05:43 pm (UTC) (Link)
Assuming this is an accurate rendition of the text into English

Yes, it is - both referring to himself in the third person and talking of 'our men' etc. Both were standard practice in Roman historical writing by that time, so he uses them to make the account sound more objective. In the case of 'our troops', he of course also manages to suggest that only his supporters are the 'true' Romans, and helps to draw a veil over the fact that the 'enemy' are also Romans.

The probability is that his own writings were intended essentially as annual reports to be sent back home to a) the senate and b) the wider literate public. So they're more like bulletins from the front line than overviews, and he wouldn't really have felt any need to explain the wider background in that context. The pseudo-Caesarian texts have of course then adopted the same approach.
uitlander From: uitlander Date: December 30th, 2008 05:50 pm (UTC) (Link)
Both were standard practice in Roman historical writing by that time, so he uses them to make the account sound more objective.

History is generally written by the victors. He was a master of propaganda :-)
brixtonbrood From: brixtonbrood Date: December 30th, 2008 11:20 pm (UTC) (Link)
I did bits of Caesar's Gallic Wars for O Level, and no-one ever gave me a good reason to doubt my basic assumption that it was transparently ghostwritten, because as well as always talking about JC in the 3rd person but referring to the army in the 1st plural, he occasionally throws in observations of his own personal observations of local flora and fauna and customs which are then in the first person singular "and I myself have observed that..".

Presumably I'm totally wrong about this, and there's some brilliant eye-witness evidence of him dictating it to his scribes every evening, it's just that my Latin teacher never bothered to mention it.
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