The Character of Marc Antony in Julius Caesar

773 WordsJul 9, 20184 Pages
Blending into the ground, waiting for the perfect moment to lash out, and then attacking when an opportunity presents itself, snakes hunt the same way some people do politics. In Rome, 44 BC, when one man fell prey, another man, camouflaged, found his opportunity to strike. As William Shakespeare’s play Julius Caesar progresses, the character of Marc Antony slowly reveals that he is not who he at first seems, a cunning manipulator rather than a blindly obedient lapdog. Antony, when he is introduced in Act 1 is running a traditional race on the Lupercal and is asked to touch Calpurnia by Caesar, who is referring to a superstition at the time that the touch of a runner in the race could cause a woman to be fertile. Antony responds to this…show more content…
Interestingly, Antony is completely absent from Act 2. This second Act is the one in which the Cassius and the conspirators against Caesar are recruiting Brutus. In the entire Act, Antony receives a single mention, when Brutus finally agrees to help the conspirators, and they are debating whether to kill him along with Caesar. In this argument, Cassius wants to kill him because he has close ties to their target, while Brutus stands in his defense, calling him “but a limb” maintaining that he wouldn’t be able to oppose them without Caesar. Every single conspirator, with the partial exception of Cassius completely underestimates Antony because he is so loyal to Caesar, and would seemingly not be able to function without him. Yet, they disregard the fact that Antony is a general of the Roman army, a position that requires no small measure of independent thought in itself. Again, Marc Antony is viewed as a minor character in Act 2. The conspirators disregard him, not only in functionality once Caesar is dead, but as an ally. And, even though, they never try to recruit him, they don’t try to ruin his reputation or disgrace him, anything to take his power. They simply don’t view him as a threat, with the exception of Cassius, who is overridden. Act 3 is the Act in which Caesar is murdered.
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