• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Compare the speeches of Mark Antony and Brutus in 'Julius Caesar'.

Extracts from this document...


Sean Martin Compare the speeches of Mark Antony and Brutus in 'Julius Caesar' The play 'Julius Caesar' was first performed in 1599 at the Globe theatre in London. The Globe theatre was built earlier that year and 'Julius Caesar' was one of the first plays performed there. This gives us reason to believe that the play was written towards the end of 1598 and beginning of 1599. William Shakespeare wrote the play 'Julius Caesar' because 'Plutarchs Lives', William Shakespeare's source of history, allowed him to use his imagination and create a sell out play. In the history book of most of the facts are the same as William Shakespeare's however he had to change some of the events in order to make it into a play and not just a documentary. In order to make 'Julius Caesar' more effective he had to shorten the time span of the play, in reality the whole scenario took months but William Shakespeare shortened the play to just a matter of days. Another reason for William Shakespeare writing the play was his interest in political assassination and the miseries of rebellion and civil war. The Queen at the time's reign was almost up, and a subtle way of informing the public that they needed an heir was through his play. Brutus was born into a noble family and from an early age was a close friend to Julius Caesar. Brutus was not a selfish man and he wanted the best for Rome, he shows this by having to be persuaded to join along side with the conspirators. ...read more.


Immediately after his plea to the mob he starts his speech with irony 'I come to bury Caesar, not to praise him' What Mark Antony really meant was quite the opposite but he has the task of pacifying the crowd, so he needs them to believe him and 'The noble Brutus hath told you Caesar was ambitious; If it were so it was a grievous fault' That sentence contains irony Mark Antony claims that Brutus is noble, he means that not at all, he then uses Brutus' favourite accusation 'ambitious' and goes on to prove him wrong. The word 'If' is conditional, Brutus believes it is true whereas Mark Antony strongly believes otherwise. The crowd are swinging further and further towards Mark Antony's way of thinking by the line. In so many words without actually saying it Mark Antony is calling Brutus a liar. 'Grievous' suggests a serious wrong doing on Brutus' behalf. Next Mark Antony points out that Brutus has allowed him to speak, then automatically undermines Brutus with a very ironic, although the sarcasm is not so obvious to the commoners at first 'For Brutus is an honourable man, And so are they all honourable man.' This irony is not realised by the crowd, however with Mark Antony's repentance of honourable to be shown the will soon catch on. Mark Antony's aim was to take the crowds opinion of the conspirators and turn it around into his favour, so that he could turn them against the conspirators, to do this he needs to show his views on why Julius Caesar was not ambitious. ...read more.


An intelligent speaker like Mark Antony is undoubtedly going to turn the tables around, now not only are the mob on Mark Antony's side but they are for the murder of all traitors, particularly the conspirators. After the crowd has descended upon Rome Mark Antony's manipulative side is let loose, his true colours are shown, 'Now let it work. Mischief, thou art afoot, Take thou what course thou wilt.' He is victorious in every sense and he relishes the moment. The superior of the two speeches is definitely Mark Antony's for several reasons, firstly and most obviously it is longer, he also uses more props, Mark Antony uses three whereas Brutus only uses one. Mark Antony is a more emotive speaker, he is more involved in his speech and communicates to the crowd on a level at which they can appreciate, whereas Brutus shows his power. Brutus delivers a simple speech and he also stands in the same area throughout. Mark Antony involves the audience by walking into them and surrounding them around Julius Caesar's body, this is a good persuasive technique amounting to audience participation. Brutus does not use irony, but the majority of Mark Antony's speech is spoken ironically, for example he repeats 'honourable' when he means the opposite. Brutus also uses repetition by repeating with the word 'ambitious' when talking about Julius Caesar. Both Mark Antony and Brutus use rhetorical questions as a persuasive technique, this gives the audience time to think and also so do the pauses that they both use. Mark Antony's speech is full of anti-climaxes, one line he is filling them with enthusiasm and the next he is appeasing them, this is an effective way of building their emotions. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Julius Caesar section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Julius Caesar essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Why is Antony a more effective speaker than Brutus?

    3 star(s)

    To make these facts more effective, Antony rhetorically asks them if this 'was...ambition'. This as well in reflection, contradictory makes Brutus seems ambitious as he has persuaded the crowd with logic to why he killed Caesar.

  2. Julius Caesar- Mark Antony speech - Analysis

    leading him into believing Caesar was ambitious and the conspirators betray Caesar by murdering him. As the speech progresses Antony speaks of Caesar as being a 'faithful and just' friend, naming Caesar's good qualities, beginning to turn public opinion around and continuing to argue Caesar was not an ambitious man

  1. Compare and contrast the speeches of Mark Antony and Brutus. Which is the most ...

    He says "Censure me in your wisdom", implying that the crowd members have wisdom to offer. This would make the crowd like Brutus more, and would be the first part of swaying them onto his side. We also see that Brutus wants, and is, in control of the situation at

  2. In William Shakespeare's "Julius Caesar", honour is displayed as a main theme throughout the ...

    So to an audience Cassius would seem more like the character they could relate to. Brutus on the other hand doesn't seem to care because he is driven by power. So even the most honourable people can become disloyal to what's close to them if they are involved with power even up to the present day.

  1. Explain how Mark Antony was able to persuade the plebeians of Rome that the ...

    However as the speech proceeds Mark Antony gradually turns the plebeians to despise the conspirators because he is a skilled orator, meaning talented speaker. Playing with the plebeians emotions Antony ends the first part of his speech with, "My heart is in the coffin there with Caesar, and I must pause till it come back to me".

  2. Explore the ways in which leadership is presented in the play 'Julius caesar'

    Caesar appears as two different characters. He had two sides to him, the side that he shows the plebeians is the brave and caring leader, but the conspirators come in contact with his other side, which is arrogant and ambitious.

  1. Examine all the soliloquies spoken by Cassius, Brutus and Mark Antony.

    He is now almost certain that he will take part in the conspiracy. From this soliloquy the tension starts to build up until Caesar's death. Brutus uses imagery to describe the situation more clearly by using a real life experience.

  2. Which Of The Following Characters Do You Consider To Be A Better Leader? Julius ...

    Once inside the senate building though the conspirators get close to him by begging. Inside the building away from the public he lets himself look like a king and doesn't see everyone as equals. Summing all this up I would say that Caesar is arrogant, pompous who thinks he is

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work