Talk:Julius Caesar/Names and Titles

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Caesar or Cæsar?

Another issue, should Caesar be written Cæsar, now that Wikipedia supports all of ISO 8859-1? Or is the two-letter form prefered in the English world? -- Jörgen Nixdorf

I believe we should use Caesar since most English speaking reader would search for/write Caesar. --Lorenzarius 15:53 Mar 18, 2003 (UTC)
Well, Julius Cæsar will actually take you to the real thing as it is right now, but it could just as well be the other way around, so it doesn't matter much what you search for, you will find your Cæsar either way. I was wondering about common convention in other encyclopedias here... (Or should I say encyclopædia? :-) -- Jörgen Nixdorf
It should be Cæsar. How many other words have a soft C before an A?Cameron Nedland 21:24, 22 June 2006 (UTC)
No, "Caesar" is correct (to the best of my knowledge, the æ is actually a space saving ligature invented by medieval monks). The reason that there is a soft C before an A is because "Caesar", surprisingly enough, is not an English word that has been Anglicized. In his native Latin, the name would have sounded something like "KAI-sar" to an English speaker. As Latin changed over time, all of the C's in front of AE's came to be soft, so in Church Latin his name is said something like "CHAY-sar". Whereas we poor English speakers say "SEE-zr". Anyway, it's a long story for something simple, no? For what it's worth, the Vicipaedia Latina makes a rule of not using æ, but rather ae. Sipes23 20:43, 11 July 2006 (UTC)
Well alright, but Cæsar still looks cooler...Cameron Nedland 03:48, 6 August 2006 (UTC)
It would indeed be pronounced with an initial "k" sound, as the "c" is followed by an "a". To my knowledge, "æ" was not a letter in the Latin alphabet.
The general rule is the same in English, French and Spanish, where the letter "c" can be pronounced "k" or "s". If the letter "c" is followed by an "a", "o" or "u", it is pronounced "k" (cat, cot, cut). If followed by an "e" or "i", it is pronounced "s" (cent, cilia). The French use the "ç" to indicate that the "s" sound is used ("français") where one would normally expect the "k" sound.
On the other hand, I have never heard anyone pronounce "caesar" with an initial "k". (And perhaps not coincidentally, the most common misspelling of "caesar" seems to be "ceasar", where the initial sound would be "s".) I think at the very least that the vernacular pronunciation should be listed as well.

--ScottyFLL 03:18, 29 August 2006 (UTC)

Tsar or Czar?

Anyone know why it should be tsar instead of czar.. the latter spelling is more in line with the origin of the word. --Dante Alighieri 03:03 12 Jul 2003 (UTC)

The Russian transliteration uses the letter which is usually translated as "Ts" as the first character. RickK 05:38 12 Jul 2003 (UTC)

Well, the OED lists czar as the former common spelling for the word which is currently spelled tsar. I'm changing the text of the article back to czar as it is likely to be more illustrative to the point at hand. The hyperlink still goes to the tsar article, so there's no risk of confusion. --Dante Alighieri 07:56 12 Jul 2003 (UTC)
I believe that tsar is more common, and i no for a fact that it is a better gide to pronunciation.Cameron Nedland 22:06, 20 July 2006 (UTC)
But in American English, we pronounce it "zar". So "czar" would in fact be the more logical choice if we are trying to lead people to the "correct" pronunciation. --ScottyFLL 03:25, 29 August 2006 (UTC)
In American English, czar is far more common than tsar; it is even an unofficial government title, e.g. "drug czar". Also, in appearance, "Czar" is more evocative of the origin of the word in "Caesar". If we want to be picky, Russian uses neither cz nor ts but a Cyrillic character of its own, so neither is more correct. If pronunciation is a priority, may I suggest spelling "Caesar" as "Kiizaar"? rewinn 05:36, 21 July 2006 (UTC)
Tsar is the more common English usage for the actual Russian tsars, whether or not we have a "Drug Czar". john k 10:13, 21 July 2006 (UTC)
Google: czar 9,820,000 tsar 5,860,000 rewinn 22:52, 14 August 2006 (UTC)

Title of the Article

What is everyone's opinion about what the title of this article should be? Caesar's full name was "Gaius Julius Caasar", although the common term for him was simply "Julius Caesar". I think the title of the article should reflect his full correct name User:Husnock

As I see it, the title should be [[Julius Caesar]] (or the most common recognizable name), but the first time he is mentioned in the article, the full name should be given. --MerovingianTalk 18:33, Jul 5, 2004 (UTC)
Wikipedia policy is to use the common name. See Wikipedia:Naming conventions (common names). Mintguy (T) 18:34, 5 Jul 2004 (UTC)
Yeah, same reasoning applies as for Bill Clinton vs William Jefferson Clinton; prefer the commonest usage for article titles. Most Romans would be totally unrecognizable if their full names were always used - Publius Vergilius Maro for example - not to mention link piping would get pretty complicated. Stan 18:38, 5 Jul 2004 (UTC)
Wow, that was quick. Anyway, I found the answer: Wikipedia:Naming conventions (ancient Romans) This name he stays! User:Husnock
Too many people watching the one article. Actually, the Roman naming convention page is just my proposal, but if nobody's objected to it in three months, it must be policy by now! :-) Stan 19:05, 5 Jul 2004 (UTC)


I don't think "Julii" a correct plural form of Julius. Even Juliuses would be better :)

Julii is the correct plural in Latin. Paul August 01:37, 5 October 2005 (UTC)
Indeed, and and you can watch the TV series to hear it spoken with a British accent... :-) Stan 04:33, 5 October 2005 (UTC)
Personally, as a Latinist, I think Juliuses sounds absolutely horrific.--Cjcaesar 15:08, 6 February 2006 (UTC)

Caesar or Cæsar (Revisited)

I know this issue was brought up before, but it seems like it was never really resolved. Should the same be spelled with the ash (æ)? Personally, I feel that we should seek to the correct names, and not the ones that are considered more common. For examples, Encyclopædia Britannica is spelled using ash, even though a vast majority of people searching use the normal english spelling. The question I ask is whether in ash was used in classical Latin. I personally dont know the answer, but I think that should be the deciding factor, especially since it is a name. 01:24, 6 December 2005 (UTC)

I disagree with using the ash. The reason Britannica is spelled with it is because that's their official, undisputed name. Caesar is usually referred to without the ash, and it's acceptable to do so without it. Therefore, we should use the more common name. Ral315 (talk) 21:53, 14 December 2005 (UTC)
The ash has simply evolved from hasty handwriting of "ae", it is not pronounced in a different way. The "correct" name of Caesar would be spelled in capitals if we were to follow Roman orthography; I am sorry, but this is a rather pointless remark. Lucius Domitius 22:42, 15 December 2005 (UTC)
USE THE ÆSC! C is not soft before A! So therefore it needs to be an æsc.Cameron Nedland 21:26, 22 June 2006 (UTC)

If you cannot resolve this, why not use both?Rev. James Triggs 22:12, 9 August 2006 (UTC)

Gaius Julius Ceasar

Shouldn't it be his full name on the first line?

Yes, it should. I've restored the "Julius" to his name. --Nicknack009 16:55, 16 December 2005 (UTC)
You got your a and e backwords in CAESAR.Cameron Nedland 04:54, 10 August 2006 (UTC)


I'm not sure where the correct sources would be, however I think his surname begins with a soft "ʧ" sound, as in "chair". At least, that's how we pronounce it in Italy which I guess is pretty close to Rome :-)

I've never come across a german-like pronounciation à la "Kaiser Wilhelm".


I assume you mean Caesar, which is a cognomen. The letter c in latin is always pronounced /k/. It was only later that the Italians and others adopted /tʃ/. —David618 05:12, 15 May 2006 (UTC)

I have always thought that the grapheme <ae> was pronounced as [e:] in Latin. Certainly not [aɪ]?? 13:57, 9 June 2006 (UTC) T.V.

This depends on whether you are using ecclesiastical or classical Latin. The Catholic Church pronounces <ae> as [e:] but the general consensus among classical Latinists, e.i. people studying Latin as it was used by ancient Romans, is that it was pronounced [aɪ]. The teacher for my History of Rome class last year was an arcaheologist, not a cultural or linguistic anthropolgist, so she pronounced everything as she had been taught in church. I have to say that her use of "kweester" (QUAESTOR), etc. made the lectures hard to follow. Both are correct in certain settings, but using [e:] when speaking of matters related to ancient Rome is wrong. —WAvegetarian(talk) 22:14, 9 June 2006 (UTC)

Many thanks for your explanation! I took a course in Classical Latin many years ago, but our teacher failed to mention this difference to us. Moreover, he explicitly taught us to pronounce every <ae> as [e:], so I guess he must have supported a minority view there, as he was a fully qualified Latinist. 07:54, 10 June 2006 (UTC) T.V.

Classical Latin name

How about changing inscription-styled IMP•C•IVLIVS•CAESAR•DIVVS to (Imperator) Caivs Ivlivs Caesar Divvs? The iscription may be preserved after his name. Brand 15:51, 27 April 2006 (UTC)

Second that, or even something more sensible. The current state of things looks both dumb and pedantic at the same time, a hard feat to pull off.... I haven't noticed any other Roman figure treated this way in Wiki, either. Divus of course is not part of his name at all, but a post-death honorific: maybe the article Hirohito will be our guide here. Bill 15:57, 27 April 2006 (UTC)
Divvs being a post-death honorific; true. However, those inscription-styled names were usually used posthumously anyway. As to Caesar's getting special treatment, he is a special Roman. He is the most famous Roman of them all, and primus inter pares as well. So I don't see that as being too much of a problem.--Ironlion45 06:51, 29 May 2006 (UTC)
Simply put, the man's name was Gaius Julius Caesar. Bill 14:28, 29 May 2006 (UTC)
On a related subject, I've been wondering how it is we know that the praenomen abbreviated C. represents "Gaius" and not, as older works expand it, "Caius". Does anyone know? --Nicknack009 14:31, 29 May 2006 (UTC)
It was traditional. The letter 'G' didn't develop in the Latin alphabet until fairly late, similar to the letter 'U' (which was given as V) and the even later addition of the letter 'J' (instead of I). It is also believed by some that it was easier to engrave the simpler letters. (which, to be fair, it is).--Ironlion45 16:47, 29 May 2006 (UTC)