the Ides of march


March 15th.

The ides of march.

Caesar to the seer: “The ides of March have come” < the prophecy had not been fulfilled>

The seer replied: “Ay, Caesar; but not gone.”

And we know the rest of the story.

By the way. Every month has an ides. Ides just means the 15th (or halfway).

It’s just that stabbing Caesar <23 times> has kind of marked the 15th of march as THE ides of ides (i just wanted to type ‘ides of ides’).

My lesson with this whole Caesar thing?

1. Don’t gloat before victory is assured <or count your chickens before they hatch>.

If it had been me I think I wouldn’t have wandered over to the seer and shoved his prophecy in his face until the 16th (just to be sure).

2. Nothing good ever happens when a group of men gather wearing togas (see Animal House as key source of proof).

3. Never wear white before Memorial Day (or whatever the Roman equivalent would have been). Bad things can happen.


March 15th is a big date (a lot happened).

Some examples …

1493 – Christopher Columbus returns to Spain after 1st new world voyage * this was the BIG trip ..

1869 – Cincinnati Red Stockings become the 1st pro baseball team

1937 – 1st state contraceptive clinic opens (Raleigh NC) * and now they want to get rid of them all

1946 – British premier Attlee agrees with India’s right to independence * now one of the biggest economies in the world

1985 – The first Internet domain name is registered ( * so this is where smartphones and texting and all the worldwideweb stuff hit the fan ….


The biggie (although I have found several discrepancies on the specific date I am sticking with this one) … if Shakespeare, through his play, made the ides of march common knowledge to all … it was his own England that took a step toward freedom of religion (something that I think everyone could use a reminder about).

1672 – King Charles II of England enacts Declaration of Indulgence


While in today’s world indulgence may mean an extra scoop of double fudge chocolate chip in 1672 it had to do with the right to worship whatever it is you wanted to worship.

This declaration:

  1. suspended all penal laws in matters ecclesiastical for not attending the established Church of England or not receiving communion according to its rites;
  2. permitted people to worship other than in the established Church of England either in private houses or in chapels;
  3. ended the requirement that people take various religious oaths before advancement to civil or military office.


The declaration applied to Catholics, Protestants, Unitarians, Jews, Muslims, and people of any or even no faith.

The declaration closed with …

And although the freedom and assurance we have hereby given in relation to religion and property might be sufficient to remove from the minds of our loving subjects all fears and jealousies in relation to either, yet we have thought fit further to declare, that we will maintain them in all their properties and possessions, as well of church and abbey-lands as in any other their lands and properties whatsoever.

My oh my.

How forward thinking was this? <albeit they did it for a number of nefarious reasons>

“remove from minds all fears and jealousies in relation to …”

I honestly cannot figure out whether in today’s world we are becoming more religiously divisive or indifferent. What I mean is that almost every study I see seems to show a growing group of people who are just ‘seeking a path to God” regardless of one organized religion and yet those who actually decide to follow a particular organized direction are becoming even more entrenched in their beliefs (to some extraordinarily restrictive perspectives).

In the end … I don’t know that it really matters as long as there is respect for the freedom to worship. And maybe we could all use a good reminder of ‘remove fear & jealousy’ with regard to that respectfulness.

Maybe we should dedicate future Ides of March to rereading the Declaration of indulgence rather than Shakespeare (although both are worthwhile).

I mean what the heck.

St. Patrick’s Day is just around the corner and that is certainly indulgence.

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Written by Bruce