The First Triumvirate was an alliance of three political figures in Ancient Rome: Pompey, Crassus, and Julius Caesar. Even though these men had different opinions concerning the development of their nation, they decided to join forces to overcome the existing difficulties. Those efforts, however, did not create significant positive consequences for the Empire because the triad lasted for only seven years before it resulted in a civil war. Various factors contributed to the failure of the First Triumvirate.


The alliance was created in 60 BC by the most powerful men in Rome to control the political and military life in the Empire. At that time, Roman political life was in chaos because of disagreements between the populares and the optimates, which were the main political factions in Ancient Rome. In addition, the Senate contributed to social unrest and created significant challenges for the three figures. Thus, each was interested in an alliance since it would promise them more power and wealth. Consequently, Pompey, Crassus, and Caesar decided to ignore their differences to rule over the nation together.

Once the First Triumvirate of Rome was established, its participants obtained extended political powers and lands. Even though the men had various areas of influence, they could not avoid conflict. In general, Pompey disagreed more with the other two triumvirs because Crassus and Caesar had a friendly relationship. In an attempt to establish a productive relationship, Caesar offered his daughter, Julia, to be Pompey’s wife. As a result, the couple’s control extended throughout the whole Empire.

However, the First Triumvirate did not create any significant or long term benefits because of the disagreements among its participants. This begs the question, how did the First Triumvirate end? The first step toward the collapse of the alliance happened in 54 BC when Julia died. Since the only person who had united Pompey and Caesar was now absent, it was reasonable to expect hostility between the triumvirs. The situation became more strained when Crassus was killed on the field of battle. The triad officially ended 53 BC with only two surviving members.

Soon after, Caesar and Pompey became evident enemies, resulting in a civil war that started in 49 BC. During this war, Caesar gained control over the Roman political and military systems, while Pompey fled to Egypt where he was killed. The death of Pompey made Julius Caesar the most influential figure in Ancient Rome. He accumulated the powers of the First Triumvirate in his reign, which allowed him to become an influential ruler.

The First Triumvirate was a crucial phenomenon in the history of Ancient Rome. It demonstrated an attempt of influential figures to gain control over the Roman nation. Even though they managed to achieve some successful results initially, the alliance finally collapsed with the deaths of the two triumvirs. Overall, the First Triumvirate was unsuccessful because its members focused on achieving personal goals and paid little attention to their shared tasks. In the end, Caesar was the sole survivor of the First Triumvirate of Ancient Rome.