To what purpose did Shakespeare create Enobarbus?

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To what purpose did Shakespeare create Enobarbus?


Enobarbus is a high-ranking soldier in Antony's army who it seems is very close to his commander. We know this by the way Enobarbus is permitted to speak freely (at least in private) with Antony. He is also a person who Antony confides in. For instance in Act I, Scene ii, as Antony explains who Cleopatra is "cunning past man's thought". In reply to this Enobarbus speaks  freely of his view of Cleopatra, even if what he says is very positive. ‘...her passions are made of nothing but the finest part of pure love. We cannot call her winds and waters sighs and tears; they are greater storms and tempests than almanacs can report. This cannot be cunning in her; if it be she makes a shower of rain as well as Jove.’ Another example of his ability to speak freely is when Antony receives the news of Fulvias death Enobarbus tells Antony to ‘give the gods a thankful sacrifice’ in other words he is saying Fulvia's death is a good thing. Obviously, someone would never say something like this unless they were very close to one another.

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So Sharespeare has created this character for some one to whom Antony can confide in and to get a truthful opinion. Furthermore Enobarbus is also used to exaggerate Antony and Cleopatra’s relationship. Which is done by his statements. (II.ii.) ‘The barge she sat in, like a burnished throne, Burned on the water: the poop was beaten gold;Purple the sails, and so perfumed that The winds were lovesick with them; the oars were Silver,’. (II.ii.) ‘And, for his ordinary, pays his heart For what his eyes eat only.’.Enobarbus leads the audience into believing that Antony and Cleopatra are inseparable. His speeches ...

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