Julius Caesar

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					Julius Caesar


                Act I
8. Why does Caesar excuse
Antony for touching Calpurnia?
   might cure her barrenness
   Caesar wants an heir.
   The feast of Lupercalia calls for a race to be run.
    Caesar tells Antony to touch Calpurnia during the
    race because it may “shake off their sterile curse.”
    Caesar mentions that Calpurnia is “barren” or
    sterile, which means she is unable to have
    children. This comment shows that Caesar wants
    children and also that he is inconsiderate toward
    his wife.
9. How does Antony describe Caesar on line 14?
What does this description show about his
relationship to Caesar?

 “When Caesar says do this, it is performed.
 Antony is a loyalist to Caesar. Caesar is a
  dictator.
 Marc Antony, who is related to Caesar on
  his mother’s side, is a staunch supporter of
  Caesar during the conflicts with Pompey
  and served in Caesar’s army when he was in
  Gaul.
10. What does the Soothsayer say
to Caesar?
   “Beware the ides of March” (famous lines)
   foreshadowing
   How does Caesar react?
   Caesar - “He is a dreamer; let us leave him. Pass.”
    (I.ii.28)
   The ides of March is the 15th; the feast of
    Lupercal is supposedly celebrated on February
    15th, and Caesar’s victory actually occurred in
    October, so history is a bit off here.
11. How does Brutus describe
himself?
 “. . . poor Brutus, with himself at war,”
 inner conflict
 suspects and respects Caesar
 honorable man
12. How does Brutus say the eye
sees itself?
 “the eye sees not itself/ But by reflection, by
  some other things.”
 literary foil
 Brutus/Cassius
13. How does Cassius describe
Brutus?
 “Your hidden worthiness into your eye.”
 Cassius is flattering Brutus, in order to win
  Brutus into his conspiracy.
 notice rhetoric
 art of persuasive speaking on the part of the
  main characters
 politics and intrigue
14. How does Cassius describe
himself?
 “I, your glass,”
 establishes Cassius as a literary foil for
  Brutus and vice versa
 also rhetorical strategy
 flattering Brutus
15. What does Brutus fear?
   fears the people choose Caesar as their king
   Caesar historically did do much good for Rome.
   much needed reforms in the Roman senate
   instituted the first public library
   improved the system of taxation
   rebuilt cities
   laws passed that would strengthen the moral fabric of
    society
   TRAGIC HERO
   Oedipus
16. What is Brutus’s major
conflict?
 Brutus is also suspicious of Caesar, but he is
  loyal to him.
 a lieutenant in Caesar’s army and served
  him loyally
 might have actually been Caesar’s
  illegitimate son
17. What does Brutus love more
than he fears death?
 “The name of honor more than I fear
  death.”
 Brutus is an honorable man.
 subscribed to philosophy known as Stoicism
 Virtue, being the attainment of valor, moral
  excellence and righteousness is the only key
  to a happy life; vice is evil and leads to an
  unhappy life
18. Summarize the anecdote that
Cassius tells Brutus.
   Cassius saved Caesar from drowning.
   underscores Cassius’s relationship with Caesar as
    formerly father/son, Cassius’s strength, and
    Caesar’s physical ailments, which metaphorically
    represent the sickness in the state of Rome
   allusion to the Aeneid (Roman epic)
   Caesar is actually just as weak and as mortal as
    anyone else; although, he has grandiose notions of
    power
19. How does Cassius describe
Caesar?
 “Why man, he doth bestride the narrow
  world/Like a colossus . . .”
 Caesar’s power is unwieldy.
 The senators are powerless.
 rhetorical strategy (simile)
 use of persuasive speaking
20. Why is Cassius flattering
Brutus?
 He wants Brutus to join the conspiracy.
 He is a rhetorician, like the other politicians
  in Julius Caesar.
21. How does Caesar describe the kind of
senators he wants to work with him?

 “Let me have men about me that are fat.”
 metaphor
 satisfaction for food compared to
  satisfaction for power
 wants satiated men
 rhetorical strategy
 persuasive speaking
22. What was offered to Caesar
three times?
   the crown
   Caesar refused the crown all three times.
   Show of humility
   The crowd so cheered Caesar’s refusal of the crown that he
    had no choice but to continue to refuse the laurel wreath on
    three separate occasions.
   In Casca’s view, Caesar desperately wanted to accept the
    crown, and his refusal was an act for the adoring crowd
   rhetorical strategy
   politics
23. How does Casca describe
Cicero’s speaking?
 “It was Greek to me.”
 famous lines
24. How does Cassius describe
Caesar?
 “Caesar’s ambition shall be glanced at.”
 foreshadowing
 Caesar’s tragic flaw
 planning the conspiracy
25. What does Cassius vow?
 “For we will shake him, or worse days
  endure.”
 will assassinate Caesar
 intense, rapid unfolding of events
26. What is the weather like?
 thunder, lightening
 storm, unlike any other ever seen, is raging
  in Rome
 literally and figuratively
 creates a suspenseful, somber mood
 foreshadowing
27/28. What strange natural
phenomena does Casca describe?
 a. Fire drops from the skies.
 b. slave not scorched by fire
 c. lion friendly; roams the capitol
 d. ghostly women walk the streets;
  supposedly saw men walking in fire
 e. night owl shrieking in the daylight
 FORESHADOWING
 DISRUPTIONS IN NATURE
29. What does Cassius say he has
arranged?
 “an enterprise of honorable-dangerous
  consequence.”
 conspiracy
 still trying to convince Brutus
 oxymoron
30. What does Cinna ask Cassius
to do?
   “win the noble Brutus to our party”
   Cinna, the conspirator not Cinna, the poet
   Cassius, having forged several letters meant to influence Brutus’s decision to join the
    conspiracy, instructs Cinna to place the letters where Brutus will be sure to find them.
    Cinna exits to leave the letters in Brutus’s office, to place on on the statue of Brutus’s
    ancestor and throw others in Brutus’s window. Just as the conspirators plan to destroy
    their friend Caesar, they plot against their friend Brutus as well. Using dishonest means
    to persuade Brutus to join in the group shows a blatant disregard for the true meaning of
    friendship. Brutus is not being wooed to join the conspiracy because of a sense of
    brotherhood coming from these other men. He is being used because the common
    people see him as “noble.” His presence in the conspiracy will make the vile and
    immoral act of murder appear to be an acceptable deed teeming with “virtue” and
    “worthiness.”
   politics
   corruption
Tragic Hero
 Good people (heroes) who fall due to error
  in judgment
 change in the hero’s fortune from happiness
  to misery due to some great error on his part
 Julius Caesar
 Brutus
 Oedipus
Foreshadowing
 lots of hints at the conflict
 weather
 unnatural events
Conflict between
officials/commoners
 Flavius and Marullus vs. Cobbler and
  Carpenter
 points out difference between officials’ and
  commoners’ views of Caesar
 points out officials’ concerns about
  Caeasar’s power
 points out gullibility of the crowd
 mob mentality
Rhetorical Devices
   Anaphora (The deliberate repetition of a word or phrase at
    the beginning of several successive verses, clauses, or
    paragraphs; for example, “We shall fight on the beaches,
    we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the
    fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills”
    (Winston S. Churchill).
   Act I, scene i, lines 51-53
   “And do you now . . .”
 repetition for emphasis
 lots of persuasive speaking
Puns
 Cobbler - mender of bad soles
 comic relief built in at the beginning
 audience appeal
 establishes conflict
 shows up the difference between
  commoners’/officials’ feelings about Caesar
 begins w/comedy - ends w/tragedy
Allusion
 historical allusion - The Feast of Lupercal
 ancient fertility celebration honoring the
  god Pan
 literary allusion - The Aeneid (ancient
  Roman epic)
Historical Background (in brief)

   Over the course of a decade, Caesar subdued great portions of Gaul, built roads, captured a million
    prisoners, and took vast amounts of the region’s wealth. Caesar’s enormous success did little to
    appease his enemies, who waited for him to leave his command in Gaul before launching the
    customary prosecutions for corruption. Caesar would not relinquish his armies until he was given
    immunity, but in the Senate Cato opposed any compromise. Pompey was the other possible military
    leader who could oppose Caesar, so Cato and the Senate relied on him for support and naively
    expected Italy to rise up against Caesar. Caesar felt that the optimates in the Senate intended to
    humiliate him and that he had to fight to preserve his honor. In January of 49 bc, Caesar marched his
    army across the Rubicon River, the boundary between his Gallic province and Italy. With the words
    “The die is cast,” he began a civil war.


   Pompey withdrew his troops to Greece; Caesar pursued and soon defeated them. Pompey fled to
    Egypt where he was murdered, and Cato went to Africa, where he lost another battle before
    committing suicide. In death as in life, Cato haunted Caesar. Cato was honored by sentimental
    supporters of the republic as “the last of the Romans.” With hindsight, he seems more clearly a man
    who helped to bring about the destruction of the republic he professed to hold so dear.

				
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