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Character Sketches of Julius Caesar

By ashleyva May 16, 2013 1058 Words
Murellus and Flavius
Murellus and Flavius are two of the first characters we are introduced to. They enter and begin to chastise commoners for celebrating on a working day. Their first communal trait, arrogance, can be seen here, in the way that they address and respond to the people. It is obvious that the cobbler and carpenter are of lower social status to them, and they speak to them in a somewhat derogatory manner. “Hence, home, you idle creatures, get you home!” says Flavius in the opening line. They begin to question the cobbler, and he replies in puns, which appears to anger them more. Not only do the puns enrage them, showing their short-temperedness (another trait), but they also confuse them, which is interesting to note. This can be interpreted as simplemindedness, as they seem to misinterpret the cobbler’s puns. “Nay sir, I beseech you, be not out with me, yet if you be out, sir, I can mend you/What mean’st thou by that? Mend me thou saucy fellow?” When the cobbler explains that he is celebrating the return of Caesar, Murellus begins a long rant about the fickleness of the Roman people. He appears to be ‘anti-caesar’ or opposed to Caesar, perhaps because they supported Pompey. Flavius shares this sentiment since he assists in chasing the commoners and instructing them to take down the images of Caesar. They are used to show that not everyone was in favour of Caesar and he was not truly ‘loved by all’. Also, the long monologue with Murellus about the faithlessness of the Romans can be seen as an allusion to the then current political situation in England. The Queens could not possibly produce an heir to the throne at her age, and everyone was worried as to who would become the new leader. Brutus

Brutus is one of the main characters, one of the main conspirators, and also one of the most complex characters. He is a good friend to Caesar, and an honourable man overall, but he values his country and morals above all, and this is a pivotal flaw which Cassius exploits. He is conflicted internally, but externally he is portrayed to be a disciplined and well respected man. He can also be considered naïve, because he is unknowingly being manipulated by Cassius. This is specifically seen when Cassius fakes letters to Brutus which state that the Roman people do not want Caesar as king. He moulds his character based on his morals, and this is the only reason he considers to join the conspiracy because them. He believes that if Caesar is to become king, and he does nothing to stop it, it is a worse sin than killing him before he can damage the country of Rome. “I would not Cassius; yet I love him well./But wherefore do you hold me so long?/What is it that you would impart to me?/ If it be aught toward he general good/Set honour in one eye and death I’th’other/ And I will look indifferently; / For let the Gods so speed me as I love/ the name of honour more than I fear death/” says Brutus in pertinence to Caesar becoming king. He can be seen as a contrast to Cassius, who kills Caesar for power, due to his greed and envy, or lack of morals. Cassius

He is the manipulative mastermind of the conspiracy. He is jealous of the power that Caesar has which leads to his wanting to dethrone him. His manipulative nature can be seen when he coerces Brutus into joining the plot to kill Caesar. He is meticulous in his planning, and leaves nothing to chance. This is seen when he fakes the letters that he sends to Brutus. He appears to have no morals, and no personal life, i.e. things that are important to him, and can be seen as detached from emotional things. He is also perceived to be a knowledgeable, yet devious man. This is noted by Caesar when he speaks to Antony saying “Yon Cassius has a lean and hungry look./ He thinks too much” Perhaps the ‘hungry’ look he is referring to is the hunger for power. By the third scene, Cassius has become somewhat obsessed with the storm. He appears to have lost all humanity and personifies with the storm that ensues. The storm is said to frightening and terrifying, yet he describes it as “A pleasing night to honest men”. He appears to revel in the dark omens that scare men, showing that he is no longer a man but something of a beast. He says to Casca “And when the cross blue lightening seemed to open/the breast of heaven, I did present myself/ Even in the aim and very flash of it.” Antony

Antony is loyal to Caesar. He obeys Caesar without question and says “When Caesar says do this it shall be preformed”. He appears to be impulsive, spontaneous and pleasure seeking. Caesar has to warn Antony not to forget “in his speed” to touch Calpurnia. He also appears trusting of other men as he misjudges Cassius when he say “Fear him not Caesar, he’s not dangerous./He is a noble Roman and well given.” Antony is also the one who offers Caesar the crown in the market-place Casca

Casca is part of the conspiracy. He is seen to be rough and blunt speaking. When asked if Cierco said anything he said “aye, he spoke Greek” meaning that he did not understand. He is opposed to Caesar’s ambitions and he believes Caesar would like to be king because of the episode in the marketplace when Caesar was offered the crown. Caesar

Caesar is stubborn in his ways, as he chooses to dismiss the warning of the soothsayer. He shows this stubbornness once again when his refuses to listen to his wife who warned him not to go out into the storm. He is sometimes perceptive, but sometimes a little too trusting. He is perceptive when he judges Cassius as “Lean and hungry” but does nothing about it. He is betrayed by some of his closest friends, and he didn’t see it coming. Caesar eventually lets his ambitions get the better of him with the prospect of being king to alluring, and this leads to his fall.

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