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Julius Caesar

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Julius Caesar In Shakespeare's Julius Caesar, Decius Brutus and Mark Antony, both Roman Senators, eulogize Julius Caesar, each using a different technique and approach. Brutus, in a somewhat arrogant, to the point, eulogy, attempts to sway the people. He justifies conspiring against Caesar by stating that Caesar's ambition would have hurt Rome. However, in Antony's eulogy, he focuses on Caesar's positive traits, and cunningly disproves Brutus' justification for killing Caesar. The fickle Romans waver between leaders, responding emotionally, rather than intellectually, to the orators. Brutus seeks to explain why he conspired against Caesar. He begins his speech with "Romans, countrymen ...", appealing to their consciousness as citizens of Rome, who, he later says, will benefit as freeman with Caesar's death. This shows that Brutus knows how to lure the crowd, appealing to their better judgement as Romans. He declares that he is an honorable man, and tells them that he will let them judge the validity of his claims. ...read more.


To anyone insulted by his speech he wonders if, as Romans who love their freedom, they could be offended or reject what he, Brutus, says. He poses the question, "Who is here so base that would be a bondman?" He stresses the point, repeating the line, "If any, speak, for him have I offended." "I pause for a reply.", allows them to respond to his rhetorical questions, giving them an even greater sense that he cares about them and their opinions. They can only respond, " None, Brutus, none." That is, none are offended, they do not disagree or argue with his words or his actions. Mark Antony's eulogy utilizes a different approach. He starts out by addressing the crowd as "Friends" because he wants to come to them as a friend rather than a ruler trying to gain power. He then says, "I come to bury Caesar, not to praise him.", thus he can ease in praises of Caesar without the crowd stopping him. ...read more.


In justifying Caesar and disproving Brutus, the people see Antony as a potential successor to Caesar. They are swayed to him by his dramatics, his underhanded way of making a point, his repetition, and compelling proof of Caesar's concern. He is able to get the people to question the rightness of killing Caesar. He has planted doubt in the people's minds, in all areas except that he, Antony, is, "poor soul", an honorable. The difference between the eulogies shows us the importance of style of speech. Both try to appeal to the people, and both use repetition, but Brutus takes a defensive approach, leaving the people to their own conclusions. However, Antony takes a prosecuting approach against Brutus, so sneaky that it is almost subliminal. Furthermore, Antony's examples give him an advantage over Brutus because he backs up statements while Brutus leaves his statements more open-ended. The people seem to find it easier to accept Antony, an emotional and sincere speaker, than Brutus who appears arrogant and forceful. ...read more.

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