Julius Caesar: Act 5 Scene 5

Antony: This was the noblest Roman of them all.
All of the conspirators save only he
Did that they did in envy of great Caesar.
He only in a general honest thought
And common good to all made one of them.
His life was gentle and the elements
So mixed in him that nature might stand up
And say to all the world “This was a man.”

Octavius: According to his virtue, let us use him
With all respect and all rites of burial.
Within my tent his bones tonight shall lie,
Most like a soldier, ordered honorably.
So call the field to rest and let’s away
To part the glories of this happy day.

Here ends the play. At first here, we see a very different Antony than before. Instead of referring to Brutus as an “honorable man,” he justifies Brutus, and shows how he was innocent among the conspirators, and that only he actually had the welfare of Rome in mind when killing Caesar, and all the others did it out of envy. This was a pretty gruesome last act after all, with the tragedy ending having all the main charecters dead. Octavius seems to have a similar reaction to the deaths of Brutus and Cassius that Brutus had to the death of Portia. After saying that he should be given honor, he goes on to say, “So call the field to rest and let’s away
To part the glories of this happy day.” I do not see what is so “happy” about that day, because from my understanding not only did Brutus and Cassius die, but Rome had just lost the battle they are in. Is he just trying to put a positive spin on it? Lastly, who wants to sleep with a corpse in their tent! I would be a nervous wreck for about an hour, at which point I would either: A. Leave the corpse in there and go sleep somewhere else B. Throw the corpse in a river C. Become a corpse myself.

-Paulie 🙂


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