"Julius Caesar" Brutus and Mark Antony Speech Comparison

Topics: Rhetoric, Roman Republic, Julius Caesar Pages: 2 (608 words) Published: May 16, 2013
Jessica Helm
English 10 Pre-AP 1st
28 February 2013
Speech Analysis
The speeches given by both Brutus and Mark Antony in William Shakespeare’s The Tragedy of Julius Caesar are very persuasive to the audience that they are given to, but rhetorical devices were used in different ways in order for each to have an effect on the people of Rome. In Brutus’s speech, he uses devices such as rhetorical question and antithesis to convince the Romans that he and the conpirators did a good deed by killing Caesar. In Mark Antony’s speech, he sways them to believe that Caesar did not deserve to die, and that the conpirators were the real enemies by using rhetorical devices like rhetorical question and apostrophe. Both speeches were very effective in getting the point across by using all three forms of persuasive appeals: Ethos, Pathos and Logos.

Brutus’s speech during Caesar’s funeral was one that would temporarily protect himself and the conspirators from the wrath of the Romans after he murdered their beloved leader. He used rhetorical questions often throughout his speech asking questions like “Had you rather Caesar living and all die slaves, than that Caesar were dead, to live all free men?” He also uses the rhetorical device antithesis, which is the oppostition of ideas in a balanced construction. This device is used in the line that says “Not that I loved Caesar less, but that I loved Rome more.” This was effective because the use of this line makes it seem as if Brutus was so noble that he would sacrifice something he loved dearly for the sake of Rome. Brutus’s speech was very effective in persuading the audience, because by the end every man that heard it was saying “Live! Live Brutus!” and saying that Brutus shall become a better Caesar. Although Brutus’s speech was very influential, the speech Mark Antony gave had a quite bigger impact.

Mark Antony’s speech followed Brutus’s, so Mark Antony had to seem like he was helping out Brutus’s point. He...
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