Comparison Of The Two Speeches In Julius Caesar

968 words - 4 pages

Comparison of the Two Speeches in Julius Caesar

 
In William Shakespeare's play The Tragedy of Julius Caesar, two speeches are given to the people of Rome about Caesar's death. In Act 3, Scene 2 of this play Brutus and Antony both try to sway the minds of the Romans toward their views. Brutus tried to make the people believe he killed Caesar for a noble cause. Antony tried to persuade the people that the conspirators committed an act of brutality toward Caesar and were traitors. The effectiveness and ineffectiveness of both Antony's and Brutus's speech to the people are conveyed through tone and rhetorical devices.

Brutus made his speech effective in persuading the people by using tone and rhetorical devices. Brutus was compassionate when referring to how he loved Caesar as much as Caesar`s friends of his speech. Brutus was showing compassion on lines18 - 20 when he said, "If there be any in this assembly, any dear friend of Caesar's, to him I say that Brutus's love to Caesar was no less than his." Brutus said this to help the people understand the sorrow he felt for the loss of Caesar, but he felt he killed Caesar for the good of Rome. Brutus anticipated an objection by the people when he said he loved Caesar , so he went on to say on lines 20 - 23, "If then that friend demand why Brutus rose against Caesar, this is my answer: Not that I love Caesar less, but Rome more."Brutus manipulated the people with rhetorical questions. He asks them on lines 29 - 33, " who is so base, that they would be a bondman, who is so rude, that they would not be a Roman, and who is so vile, that will not love his country," the people do not want to be against their country nor do they want to be so base to be a slave. Knowing this, Brutus asks the people if there were any like that to speak ,for him he had offended, and no one would speak out. Brutus tells them people then he had done no more to Caesar than they will do to him.

Brutus's speech was ineffective in giving them reasons for Caesar's ambition. This gave Antony a large gap to turn the people against Brutus. Brutus told the people to believe him for his honor , and to respect him for his honor, so that they may believe. He is telling them to believe him for his honor and not for the reasons he gives. Brutus repeated many times that Caesar was ambitious but never once said how or why. This left the people with a question in their mind.

Antony used the explicit gap in Brutus's speech to turn the people quickly against Brutus. Antony began his speech with a detached...

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