Monday, 11 February 2013

The Gallic Wars - what if?

Since the topic of Gaul is getting a bit of a run at the moment, it might be time to consider a snapshot of the results and 'what ifs' of the Gallic Conquest. What has to be taken from this war is that at any moment it could have changed our world history - if Julius Caesar and his legions had been obliterated during the campaign then we should start imagining the 21st-century without our current calendar. Imagine a present day without the Latin Alphabet. Imagine a world where Christianity and Islam had no empire or imperial legacy to spread them. This all could have happened if Caesar had failed. But then, consider what happened because he didn't. In 58BC there were six million Gauls living in dozens of tribal states across modern France, Belgium and the Netherlands. By the end of 52BC Gaul had become a single nation under one King - however one million were dead and another million Gauls were enslaved. Modern, heavily armed armies of up to 250,000 men had waged total war against each other - bringing a scale of destruction to western Europe that was never really equalled until Napoleon or even World War One. And this was all because of Julius Caesar's need to evade his political enemies in Rome. Love his legacy or hate it...we are living in a world that Caesar gave us, which, for those victims of Gaul was quite the bitter pill to swallow. What might have been the alternative history the Gauls could have given us? I guess we'll never know.

Check out the novel 'Vagabond' on Amazon - a runaway priestess in Gaul