Caesar is flawed. Shakespeare depicts Caesar as extremely egotistical and pompous. Consequently, these personality traits lead to his death. Caesar was given many omens that his downfall was on its way. The first of these warnings was that of the Soothsayer. The soothsayer tells Caesar “Beware the ides of March” (I. ii. 20). However, Caesar simply says the soothsayer is insane and continues on. The second example of Caesar’s biggest flaw is when Calpurnia has a dream about Caesar’s death. Caesar says Calpurnia called out “Help, ho! They murder Caesar!” (II. ii. 3), during her sleep. Calpurnia had a dream that Caesars statue had a hundred spouts that spewed his blood, and the Romans bathed their hands in it. Not only did Caesar ignore his wife, but he also tuned out reports of nature in chaos. Calpurnia says to him “There is one within, / Besides the things that we have heard and seen, / Recounts most horrid sights seen by the watch. / A lioness hath whelped in the streets, / And graves have yawned and yielded up their dead” (II. ii. 14-18). Calpurnia gives several examples of nature in di...
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...to help him insane. In the beginning of the play, he says to the soothsayer: “He is a dreamer” (I. ii. 26). In act three the soothsayer tries again and Caesar responds: “What, is this fellow mad?” (III. i. 10). Caesar’s character is effective in the fact that the reader has an aversion to him. Shakespeare leads the reader to believe that Caesar only cares about power and wealth, therefore the reader should not honor or have sympathy towards him.
Julius Caesar is the tragic hero because his arrogance causes his death. He ignores the advice of the soothsayer, his wife, nature, priests, and Artemidorus. Julius Caesar’s obsession with power ends up taking his life. In the end by Caesar’s astonishment, his close friend ends up giving him the final blow. Absolute power always corrupts.
Elements of Literature. Orlando: Holt, Winston, Rineheart, 2007.
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