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Julius Caesar

By Newblogtimes Feb 04, 2013 647 Words
Julius Caesar Essay
By Anonymous

“Hold thou my sword hilts whilst I run on it” (5.5.32). Julius Caesar by William Shakespeare is a tragedy about the details surrounding the death of Caesar and the deaths of the conspirators. This tragedy involves a tragic hero, a hero whose strengths cause his downfall. The tragic hero is Brutus because he is virtuous, his morals cause him to kill Caesar, and his morals ultimately kill him. In the beginning of Julius Caesar, Brutus was known as an honorable man who cared more about the state of Rome than anyone else did. When Cassius was talking to Brutus, he mentioned that he knows Brutus has “virtue to be in him” (1.2.97). Brutus was well known for his integrity- enough that others praised him for that. This allowed him to be easily manipulated if he believed it was for the greater good. It was because of this weakness that Cassius wanted to have Brutus join him in his conspiracy. This was done in order to legitimize his conspiracy. During the time when Cassius began to convince Brutus to join the conspiracy, Brutus tells the belief, he would “rather be a villager” (1.2.181) than to live under tyranny. This shows that Brutus would sacrifice everything to prevent Rome’s fall, and it’s rise to tyranny. Only a man who was incredible virtuous would sacrifice his social status and way of life just to protect his country. As the story advanced, Brutus’ morals caused him to kill Caesar to save Rome. Brutus was a senator elected by the people. Because of the responsibilities associated with this, Brutus was entrusted to represent the ideas of the population. While Brutus was resting at his home, he found a petition asking him to “speak, strike, and redress” (2.1.58). Since Brutus read several petitions (despite the petitions being written by Cassius) asking him to get rid of Caesar, Brutus begins to believe that the people want him to get rid of Caesar because Caesar is threatening the Roman people. Brutus destroyed Caesar because he didn’t want Romans “to die all slaves” (3.2.25). Brutus was faced with the dilemma of killing Caesar or preserving the Republic of Rome. He murdered Caesar in that belief. This virtue of doing actions for the greater good became Brutus’ fatal flaw, which is necessary in a tragic hero. In the end, Brutus’ morals were the downfall of him after the death of Caesar. When the Romans heard Antony’s speech about Caesar’s will, the Romans became inflamed with anger and shouted, “Let not a traitor live” (3.2.216). The Romans were upset when they heard the selfless items in the will that they believed that Brutus was wrong to kill Caesar. This shows that Brutus’ morals destroyed the Rome he loved and had brought an uprising on his hands. Because of this, Brutus lost everything he cared about such as Portia, his home, and his status. When defeat was at hand at the Battle of Philippi, Brutus believed it was “worthy to leap” (5.5.28) into the pit of death. Brutus killed himself out of the moral belief that it’s better to kill oneself than to die by a warrior’s hand. Thus, his morals killed him in the end; since, they required him to kill himself. Because his moral of protecting Rome at all costs killed him, Brutus is the tragic hero; since, his morals, his fatal flaw, brought his downfall. By being virtuous, letting his morals cause him to kill Caesar, and having died for his morals, Brutus is truly a tragic hero. He is a tragic hero; since, his moral of protecting Rome ultimately brought his downfall when he was manipulated by Cassius to kill Caesar in the conspiracy. Brutus was a tragic hero, but he was a model Roman.

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