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A Comparison Study of Brutus' and Antony's Speeches and Their Rhetoric

Antony’s speech at Caesar’s funeral in Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar was far more successful than Brutus’ since Antony used a multifaceted emotional argument, rather of relying on one assertion, as Brutus had. Because of this, Antony was in a position to sway the crowd to his side, against Brutus and the Conspirators. “[Antony] does not… show the insufficiency of any 1 approach… Rather, his various rhetorical devices play into and strengthen one particular another” (Wills 46). The major flaw in Brutus’ speech at Caesars funeral was that his argument had only a single source of proof, his reputation. “Brutus’ speech at Caesars funeral hammered house one particular argument- that his personal honor had to be relied on” (Wills 79). For the duration of his speech, Brutus gave no tangible proof that Caesar was ambitious: no examples, witnesses, or letters proving that what he was saying was truth. The primary weakness to this kind of argument is that if that 1 source of proof, in this case Brutus’ honor, is disproved, the complete argument falls away. Yet another flaw in Brutus’ oration was his failure to ‘read’ the crowd appropriately, and simply because of this, he presented the incorrect sort of argument, a logical 1, when he need to have projected a a lot more emotional one, as Antony did. Although organizing his speech, Brutus did not recognize that the crowd would be more reactive to emotional prompts. Even though presenting a logical argument to a lot more educated people typically has the desired impact, lesser educated folks are almost always a lot more responsive to emotional cues. In the course of his address, Brutus only tries to emotionally involve the crowd as soon as, when he tells them he loved Caesar, and was Caesars very good friend, but he loved Rome more, and had no selection but to slay him. Although it is a great tactic, he did not emphasize it sufficient, and seeing that it was the only emotional point in his complete dialogue, the pathos element of his argument left significantly to be preferred. “[Brutus’ oration] is all really cut and dried, pedantically so” (Wills 53). All round, Brutus uses to significantly logos, logical points of an argument, for a uneducated mob. They agree with him and cheer him on, and want to crown him king, proving that they do not comprehend Brutus’ actual reason for killing Caesar. Brutus did not want a king. But Brutus’ most intriguing flaws are the flaws in his personality that blocked him from understanding the crowd. “Brutus is a vain man… an impractical idealist… and lacks the saving sense of humor that springs from an understanding of his fellowman” (Matthews, Net). The way he acts and thinks provides him a terrible disadvantage, because he does not comprehend or know how to speak to the folks. Considering that Brutus is from the upper class, he didn’t have significantly interaction with the reduce classes of society, and did not recognize that typical males are not logical, idealistic creatures. If they had been, his speech would have been extremely powerful. Antony, on the other hand, had several examples that Caesar was not ambitious. “[Caesar] hath brought several captives home to Rome,/ Whose ransoms did the basic coffers fill” (3.2.90-92 Shakespeare). Antony reminds the men and women of Rome that Caesar was not ambitious simply because he gave his war spoils to the people of Rome alternatively of keeping them for himself. “When the poor have cried, Caesar hath wept/ Ambition should be produced of sterner stuff” (three.2.93-94 Shakespeare). He also tells them of Caesar’s compassion and empathy for the widespread folks. “I thrice presented to [Caesar] a kingly crown,/ Which he did thrice refuse” (three.2.98-99 Shakespeare). He then goes on to say that if Caesar had been ambitious, he would have taken the crown that Antony had presented to him. Caesars refusal proves Antony’s point that Caesar was not ambitious, and Antony starts to gain the approval of the common men and women as they consider about what he has stated. A single of the other tactics utilized by Antony to sway the men and women was deceit. He lied or talked about things he never could have known to reach the crowd on a more emotional level. For example, Antony tells the crowd how he remembered the 1st time Caesar put on the cloak that he died in. Antony was not an associate of Caesar in the course of the military campaign that overcame the Nervii, when he mentioned Caesar first place on the cloak. Also, Caesar most likely would not be wearing an old cloak he had fought battles in to a ceremony at which he anticipated to be crowned. Later, Antony points out the numerous wounds on Caesars body, and assigns every 1 to a distinct conspirator. But how could Antony, who didn’t witness Caesars murder, know who caused the person wounds? The person conspirators possibly could not discover the person wounds they had triggered due to the fact of the frenzied way they attacked him. But though it us untrue, this is a extremely great tactic employed by Antony since it ‘puts a face’ on the conspirators, and provides the now angry mob folks to hate. Antony triumphs simply because his skills and are sturdy in every area that Brutus’ are weak, and he has the advantage of speaking right after Brutus, he knows what he’s going up against. “The psychology of the crowd that [Brutus] ignored or was ignorant of Mark Antony understands and applies” (Matthews, Web). Antony is capable to recognize the mob, and tailor an argument complete of emotional prompts that involve the mob, and make them feel pity and empathy for Caesar, like when he points out the holes in Caesars cloak. His other benefit, speaking soon after Brutus, makes Antony’s job less difficult simply because now he knows exactly what he has to disprove, and has already observed how the crowd reacted to Brutus. With Brutus gone, Antony can disprove everything Brutus said with out interference, and he does so with fantastic ease, citing Caesars previous actions and proving his lack of ambition. The numerous-pronged attack of Antony was what made his address to the mob much much more powerful than Brutus’. This was simply because he only had to disprove Brutus’ reputation as an honorable man to destroy Brutus’ entire argument. He did that very easily by proving to the mob that Caesar was not ambitious, and consequently that Brutus was not honorable. Antony has lots of diverse examples to prove Caesar was not ambitious, and lied to get the audience far more emotionally involved. He also figured out that he must focus much more on pathos due to the fact the crowd was uneducated and very emotional. In the end, Antony was more powerful because he used so many diverse positive aspects, proof, and a variety of emotional ‘props’ in such a masterful way that they tied in with every single other and mutually supported every other, making him virtually invincible. Functions Cited Delaney, Bill. “Shakespeare’s JULIUS CAESAR.” Explicator 60.3 (2002): 122. MAS Ultra – College Edition. Internet. 11 Apr. 2014. Wills, Gary. “Rome and Rhetoric: Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar.” New Haven, CT : Yale University Press, c2011. Book. Matthews, Brander. “The Plays from Plutarch.” Shakespeare as a Playwright. Brander Matthews. Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1913. 254-263. Rpt. in Shakespearean Criticism. Ed. Mark W. Scott. Vol. 7. Detroit: Gale Study, 1988. Literature Resource Center. Internet. 28 Apr. 2014. Harley Granville-Barker, “ ‘Julius Caesar’,” in his “Prefaces to Shakespeare, first series, Sidgwick & Jackson, Ltd., 1927, pp. 51-132 Stopford A. Brooke, “ ‘Julius Caeser’,” in his “Ten A lot more Plays of Shakespeare, Constable and Firm Ltd., 1913, pp, 58-90 Shakespeare, William. Julius Caesar. Lastname, Firstname. Title of Book. City of Publication: Publisher, Year of Publication. Medium of Publication.    

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