Brutus Caesar

918 Words4 Pages
Following the death of Caesar, both Brutus and Antony deliver speeches to the demanding Roman public that are ambivalent and fickle on the issue. Though they both address the situation of Caesar’s unfortunate demise, each speaker has a different agenda for their argument, their words also fundamentally embodying their individual characteristics as people. Brutus strives to convince the Roman citizens that the slaying the avaricious Caesar with the support of the valiant conspirators was necessary for the preservation of Rome. On the other hand, Antony delivers a subtle yet powerful cry for the wrongness of Caesar’s death and reveals the true nature of the conspirators. Still, which side was effectively able to convey their conflicting speech…show more content…
Throughout Antony’s oration, various examples of rhetorical devices are present that help form the concrete backbone of his claims. In multiple instances, he relies upon verbal irony to attack Brutus in a subtle way in a method that builds up throughout the course of his speech and moves the audience without blatantly declaring his mistrust of Brutus. When Antony presents his argument to the Roman crowd, he quotes material from Brutus’ prose and mocks them by constantly referencing that “Brutus says he was ambitious; and Brutus is an honorable man” (III.ii.86-87). In constantly referring to this repetition, he is expressing his derision of the honor and chivalry that Brutus tries to associate with his image as he constantly defends his individual actions for Caesar’s death. Rather than make the mistake of appealing to the crowd by justifying his personal actions and turning Brutus’ own language against him with the aid of figurative devices, Antony is able to counter the effects of Brutus’ overall claim that Caesar was too corrupt and instead make the Romans question the truth behind Caesar’s so-mentioned ambitious flaw. Simply put, Brutus does not use much figurative language and by relying on cold hard evidence that only relates to his person, his oration is easily deconstructed by Antony. However, Brutus does try to phrase a rhetorical device in which he asks the public at the beginning of his presentation, “who is here so rude that would not be a Roman?” (III.ii.30). Despite his attempt at a rhetorical question, Brutus instead divides the crowd by questioning their support and motivation, thereby reducing the effect of the appeals to unity and patriotism he relies heavily on. Likewise, Antony does ask a rhetorical question as well asking the Romans if Caesar really did seem ambitious from his actions (III.ii.98). Used as
Open Document