Monday, December 14, 2009

Julius Caesar by William Shakespeare, reviewed by Akanshi Chauhan

Julius Caesar by William Shakespeare

Reviewed by
Name: Akanshi Chauhan
School: Gyan Mandir Public School

Julius Caesar is an icon of political life of Rome. He has expanded the Roman empire and brought booties to it. Immensely popular among the common Romans and many remote members, Caesar, however, is held in contempt by many of his colleagues like Caesar, who are jealous of his political rise and popularity. Caesar nurse a desire to realize his political ambition by wiping out Caesar. So he convinces other senators about his cause. He achieves biggest success when he also wins over Marcus Brutus, a very respected citizen and leader of Rome, to his side. They hatch a conspiracy to end of his life.

On the even of Caesar’s assassination by the conspirators led by Caesar, Calpurnia (Caesar’s wife) has a nightmare which she sees several supernatural happenings for telling that some harm would befall Caesar. She asks him not to go to the senate.

Caesar nearly yields to her request, but is persuaded by Decius Brutus, another senator, to go to the Senate where the members were waiting to crown him the Emperor. The Senators found a very appropriate opportunity to kill Caesar. Proud and arrogant as he is, he haughtily rejects the petition of Metellus Cimber to revoke his brother’s banishment. Casca is the first one to stab Caesar saying “Speak hands for me.” Other senators also dig their daggers in Caesar’s body. Brutus being the last one to do so. Caesar falls down dead with these words on his lips “Et tu, Brute?” (You to, Brutus?)

The conspirators begin to shout “Liberty, freedom and enfranchisement!” claiming that their purpose in killing Caesar was to safeguard the rights and liberties of Roman people.

Mark Antony, Caesar’s close friend now appears on the scene. He is shocked and shaken to see his friend and mentor’s body in a pool of blood, but very shrewdly he keeps his cool, sensing that the conspirators could also kill him. He apparently befriends them but is burning with a desire to avenue Caesar’s death.

He seeks the conspirator’s permission to address the Commoners in Caesar’s funeral at the market place. Though Cassius objects to it, Brutus allows Antony to do so but only after he himself has spoken, as he feels such a permission would bring them no harm.

With his unmatched oratory, Antony sways the feelings of the public in the favour of the dead Caesar and thus turns the mob against the conspirators, who have to flee for their lives. Mob fury and the military might of Antony and Octavious Caesar bring about the doom of the conspirators.

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