Theme in Shakespeare Julius Caesar

Elijah Fleury

Thesis

In Shakespeare's play, Julius Caesar, he raises many questions regarding how compromise and dissension interfere and cause the problems that arise. Throughout the beginning of the play, Brutus contemplates whether to kill Caesar or not imagining the monster he may one day become but has yet to commit any crime or tyranny throughout the nation. Brutus begins to thinking upon this in Act 2 Scene 1, where he states, “The abuse of greatness is, when it disjoins Remorse from power: and, to speak truth of Caesar, I have not known when his affections sway'd More than his reason. But 'tis a common proof, That lowliness is young ambition's ladder, Where to the climber-upward turns his face;
But when he once attains the upmost round. He then unto the ladder turns his back.” Instead of giving Caesar the chances of proving himself to be a great leader for Rome, Brutus conspires against him and manipulates the minds of Cassius and others foreshadowing the death of Caesar. Then later in the play as Caesar death is told to the people Antony states, “If you have tears, prepare to shed them now. You all know this cloak. I remember the first time Caesar ever put it on. It was a summer’s evening; he was in his tent. It was the day he overcame the Nervii warriors. Look, here’s where Cassius’s dagger pierced it. See the wound that Casca made. Through this hole beloved Brutus stabbed. And when he pulled out his cursed dagger, see how Caesar’s blood came with it, as if rushing out a door to see if it was really Brutus who was knocking so rudely. For Brutus, as you know, was Caesar’s angel. The gods know how dearly Caesar loved him! This was the most unkind cut of all. For when the noble Caesar saw him stab, he understood his beloved Brutus’s ingratitude; it was stronger than the violence of traitors, and it defeated him, bursting his mighty heart. And at the base of Pompey’s statue, with his cloak covering his face, which was dripping with blood the whole time, great Caesar fell. Oh, what a fall it was, my countrymen! Then you and I and all of us fell down, while bloody treason triumphed. Oh, now you weep, and I sense that you feel pity. These are gracious tears. But if it overwhelms you to look at Caesar’s wounded cloak, how will you feel, kind men, now? Look at this, here is the man—scarred, as you can see, by traitors. (he lifts up CAESAR's cloak).” Instead of being the background person Antony was he uses his speech to manipulate the minds of the people to fund the upcoming war between him and Brutus and the other attackers. Throughout the whole story it seems that everyone had changed the simple truths to use in their own sick twisted ways.

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