Marcus Brutus as the Protagonist of William Shakespeare's Julius Caesar
All men have the power to reason. Some
men can reason better than others, nonetheless, all men
can reason. In order to reason, one must clear his mind, be completely
impartial, and understand the situation to the best of his ability. The play
Julius Caesar, by William Shakespeare, is the story of a man trying his best to
make reasonable, rational decisions. Marcus Brutus is this struggling character
who evades constant pressure from all sides to gloriously pull through, yet dies
at play's end. Undoubtedly, Brutus is the main character, and driving force of
the play, despite the misleading title of Julius Caesar. Three separate,
critical aspects help to show the reader how unimportant Julius Caesar is to the
play. Caesar appears, in dreams, and thoughts of multiple people, giving
warnings and special messages. Nobody seems to pay attention to him.
Anotherexample is illustrated by the way that Brutus seems to dominate his own
actions, whatever he is thinking. Also, Antony declares war on Brutus, but not
out of love for Caesar, but anger toward the conspirators. As these aspects are
explained in further detail one will be sure of the fact that Brutus, without
question, clearly dominates the play as a whole.
Caesar warns numerous people of ensuing tragedies multiple times, and not once
is he listened to. Calpurnia cries out terrified three times during the night,
"Help ho - they murder Caesar!" The reader soon learns of a dream in which
Caesar's wife visualizes her husband's death. She begs and pleads Caesar to
stay home that day, however, nobody ever pays any attention to her dream. In
this instance, Caesar has no influence on the outcome of the play. Again, when
Brutus sees the likeness of Caesar in a dream, Caesar gives an ominous message
implying to Brutus not to go to Philipi. ". . . thou shalt see me at Philipi."
The ghost of Caesar, unimportant and unbelieved is perceived as a "day dream."
Brutus, not paying any attention to the dead and gone Caesar, does not listen.
In this sense, Caesar does not make a strong enough impression upon other
characters in the play to be taken seriously. In the battles between Antony
and Brutus, Caesar is often mentioned in their dying words. "Caesar, thou art
revenged, even with the sword that killed thee." These are Cassius' dying
words. Brutus's final words are somewhat similar, "Caesar, now be still; I
killed not thee with half so good a will." Their words represent that although
final thoughts consisted of the evil crime they had committed, Caesar had
nothing to do with their deaths. Caesar, although a highly respectable man,
had no more influence on the outcome of the play than did any character.