On this day Julius Caesar, with his 13th legion, crossed the Rubicon River thus making himself and his legionaries, automatically sentenced to death under Roman law.
Crossing the Rubicon even today means making a risky decision after which there is no going back. Namely, the Rubicon was a river in Italy south of which no Roman general was allowed to lead an army. This decree was intended to protect Rome from military dictators who could impose their authority by taking Rome with their military forces.
On this day, Julius Caesar decided to cross the Rubicon River with his 13th legion and head towards Rome. By that act, both Caesar and his legionaries were automatically sentenced to death under Roman law. Apparently Caesar then said the famous sentence: “The die is cast.” (Latin: “Alea iacta est”), precisely because there was no turning back. However, Caesar was able to win the civil war, and since the Senate fled from Rome, the death sentence was never applied to him or his legionaries.