A tragic hero is the character whose actions deeply affect the other characters and who creates a series of events that eventually lead to the character’s downfall and the downfall of his loved ones. Such a hero possesses a flaw in character that influences his actions and thinking and especially his judgments. In logically determining who the hero in Julius Caesar is, one simply must find the one character who fits the above guidelines. Marcus Brutus is the only one, and, thus, he is the tragic hero.
One of the first occasions presented was the plotting of Caesar’s assassination. Cassius, Casca, Trebonius, Ligarius and the other conspirators all wanted to rid Rome of Caesar. However, not one of them could give the green light.” They needed one who held a high place in the hearts of the people, to support them and to justify their actions. They needed an “honorable” man. Without this man, the conspirators would not be called conspirators for they would not have had sufficient strength to see it through. In that, there would not have been a conspiracy. Marcus Brutus agreed to be their source of strength. This final decision to join Cassius and company marked the end of Julius Caesar.
After the murderous confrontation, it was not too late to prevent the anger of Caesar’s allies and the citizens or, even, to avoid future civil war. But it was here that Brutus made his second and third mistakes. Marcus Brutus rose before the Roman populace and attempted to offer a justification of Caesar’s murder. His flawed judgment came when he deemed Antony trustworthy and allowed him to speak at Caesar’s funeral. Brutus naively let Antony draw the mob in his favor. No one could dare refute Antony’s impassioned pleas in behalf of Caesar.
Brutus’ tragic flaw was his perception that all men were identical to him in their motives. This factored allowed his decisions to be easily influenced by others whose motives were devious. Cassius was able to convince Brutus to join the conspiracy because Brutus thought the only reason behind the conspiracy was to prevent one man from becoming “Rex.” He allowed Antony’s speech to occur because he was sure that Antony was motivated by the same “honor” which motivated himself.
Finally, though the debate may continue on those issues mentioned, there is no other character whose decisions and actions created a series of events so catastrophic.
Free Julius Caesar Essays: Honorable Men in Julius Caesar
Honorable Men in Julius Caesar
In Shakespeare’s play Julius Caesar, Brutus and Cassius are both considered honorable men by the public. But, like all traits, honor is in the eye of the beholder. Honor is defined as evidence or symbols of distinction. Those who are placed in power are often chosen because of their traits, which include being honorable. If those in power have any faults, it could diminish their position in the eyes of the public.
Brutus is considered an honorable man by all those who live in Rome. He is a close friend of Caesar, husband of Portia, and is also a Senator. Brutus is drawn into killing Caesar by Cassius, who was jealous of Caesar’s degree of power. Brutus was pulled into the scheme by letters brought to his house by Decius to make him think that the people of Rome wanted him to replace Caesar. Brutus also feels that Caesar is being given too much power and will destroy Rome’s democracy. Brutus’ reason for killing Caesar is to benefit Rome, he proves this when he states”If then that friend demand why Brutus rose against Caesar, this is my answer: not that I loved Caesar less, but that I loved Rome more.” After losing to Mark Antony and Octavious, Brutus runs onto his own sword. He sticks to his beliefs, not altering them for others.
Cassius is the leader of the conspirators. He is jealous of the power that Caesar holds and wants for himself. Caesar says that Cassius”…Cassius has a lean and hungry look. He thinks to much. Such men are dangerous.”, meaning that he looks sneaky and is not to be trusted. The whole idea to kill Caesar begins with Cassius, he convinces the other Senators to do as he wishes. Cassius commits suicide because he is afraid of what will happen to him if Mark Antony and Octavius find him. Another reason for his suicide is because he believes that his men have lost the battle and he does not want to face the consequences.