Mark Antony Research

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Mark Antony Study Guide

Character Overview
Mark Antony is one of the many main characters in William Shakespeare’s world famous play ‘Julius Caesar’. In the play, he is a confident and devoted follower of Julius Caesar, and also his loyal friend. After the murder of Julius Caesar, Mark Antony sides with Octavius, Caesars nephew, to bring to justice the conspirators. Mark Antony is an accomplished soldier and a skilled leader. He is politically shrewd and he has the ability to use the power of rhetoric when it is needed.

Key Scenes
* Act 3 Scene 1: pages 83-91
* Act 3 Scene 2: pages 95-107
* Act 5 Scene 1: pages 141-145
* Act 5 Scene 5: page 163

Key Quotations
"Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears; I come to bury Caesar, not to praise him." Act 3 Scene 2 Lines 77-78 Antony opens his funeral speech with this famous line. He's acknowledging the crowd as his peers and says he has no motives besides burying Caesar. In this pivotal scene, Antony performs a masterful feat; he manages to turn the crowd against the conspirators. "This was the noblest Roman of them all… made one of them" Act 5 Scene 5 Lines 68-72 In the final scene of the play, and in the wake of Brutus's suicide, Antony gives Brutus's eulogy. Antony cites Brutus's naive nature as the reason for his nobleness. Of all the conspirators, Brutus was the only one who thought that Caesar's death was for the good of Rome; everyone else acted out of jealousy. According to Antony, even in death Brutus was noble. “Yet Brutus says he was ambitious…
And I must pause till it come back to me” Act 3 Scene 2 Lines 90-99

Antony doesn't suggest the people adopt his judgments; instead he masterfully suggests they think back on their own past judgments. It's not just that Antony loved Caesar, but that the people did too.  This is a masterful rhetorical move: Antony gets the crowd to come to the conclusion he wants them to without their realizing it. “Have patience, gentle friends, I...
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