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Human Interest

A characteristic of news story about people usually those involved in some


emotional struggle. A story that tugs at your heartstring or satisfies your curiosity
about other people and what happens to them has the news characteristic of
human interest.

The common interest in what happens to others is what makes us seek out
friends for conversation during a refreshment break or buy people to read in our
spare moments, like the story of the German Painter, many stories have more than
one characteristic of news

Timeliness.

News is timely the day it happens. Timeliness is a characteristic of new


story about an event that is reported as soon as it happens. It appears on that days
front page or news cast.

Timeliness refers to information that is current at the time of publication.


Consider publication, creation and revision dates. Beware of Web site scripting
that automatically reflects the current day's date on a page.

Tip: The information provided might have been current at the time it was
published. Can you establish the publication date? Does the revision date cover
changes in content or aesthetic revisions only?

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PLOT ANALYSIS

1. Exposition

Antony lives a life of luxury in Egypt.

Antony is living in Egypt, and is happy to be infatuated with Cleopatra.


Everything in Egypt is going great, and then Antony gets word that things are
falling apart in Rome. He hears that wars are brewing, and it’s clear that the other
two triumvirs, Lepidus and Caesar, could really use his help. Most importantly,
Antony hears rumors that he’s losing face in Rome for being the Queen of Egypt’s
pet. He resolves to go home and be a soldier once more.

2. Raising Action

Antony’s brother and wife are waging war; Pompey is waging war; pirates
are waging war; Parthians are waging war; Caesar is waging war, etc.
Cleopatra flees the first naval battle against Caesar and Antony follows.

In Rome, straits are dire. Wars are being waged left and right, and as soon as
Antony resolves one issue, another pops up. Antony's wife and brother are battling
Caesar, which gets resolved when Antony's wife dies. In a war between Pompey
and the Roman triumvirs, Antony negotiates a truce with Pompey, which also
resolves the pirate issue. Everything comes to a head, though, when Antony
marries Octavia, thinking this will seal his peace with Caesar, only to find out that
Caesar has betrayed him by breaking the truce with Pompey, kicking Lepidus out
of office, and speaking ill of Antony publicly. Antony can’t abide by these
wrongs, and so decides to go to war against Caesar. The first battle will be held at
sea. Antony is supposed to have Cleopatra’s aid, but when the naval battle comes
to a head, Cleopatra’s ship flees. Antony, out of his love for her, follows. He feels
he’s undone as a soldier, never mind having lost the battle.
Things are going badly for Antony. Cleopatra flirts with Caesar’s
messenger, Thidias, which shows her compromised love and loyalty to Antony.
This is a particularly awful blow, as he’s just lost a naval battle and his soldierly
honor for her love, thinking it was true. Some of the men on watch hear strange
music all around them, which they interpret to be the sound of Hercules
abandoning Antony. Most strikingly, Enobarbus deserts Antony for Caesar’s
camp. The sum of these little blows is Antony’s admission that he’s losing faith in
himself, which doesn’t bode well for how he’ll come out in battle. If he doesn’t
even believe he’ll triumph, then how can anyone else?

3. Climax

Antony’s fleet, in the second naval battle with Caesar, surrenders


happily to Caesar’s troops. The battle is lost and Antony is convinced it’s
because of Cleopatra’s betrayal. He returns in a rage and vows to kill her.

We might think Antony’s finally come to his senses. He watches his own
men turn against him at sea and is convinced this is the work of Cleopatra’s
betrayal. When he hunts her down, we see that his real conflict isn’t the wars
(which he’s used to as a soldier), but the question of whether Cleopatra is as
devoted to him as he is to her, given that he’s sacrificed so much for the queen. It
seems that, in spite of all the hot and cold feelings, this time he’s really had it, and
we’re not sure what he’ll do.

Cleopatra locks herself away in her monument. She has word sent to Antony
that she has committed suicide.

Cleopatra goes through with this little ruse to gain Antony’s attention.
Like she usually does, she plans to decide her actions based on his reactions
(slightly backwards, isn’t it?). She doesn’t anticipate how far he’s fallen into
despair, but the audience knows they can expect something awful, given how
things have been going.
4. Falling action

Antony, hearing of Cleopatra's suicide, stabs himself. Bleeding, he finds out


that Cleopatra didn't really kill herself. The two lovers make peace before
Antony dies, and Cleopatra also decides to actually kill herself.

Antony relents his fury and lets love take him to his death, thinking he’ll
find Cleopatra there. His suicide isn’t a sad one inherently: he does it because he
feels it’s the best way to prove that he, and not Caesar, is the sole master of his
destiny. In that regard, it’s a noble and very self-possessed act. With this in mind,
his death scene isn’t a lamentable one, though it is tragic. Cleopatra says she’ll kill
herself, too, though she says it in passion, which we know we can’t trust with her.
What seems to actually seal the deal for her is word from Dolabella that Caesar
will have her marched through the streets as part of his triumphant parade. She
can’t bear this indignity.

5. Resolution

Cleopatra kills herself. Caesar finds her.

Cleopatra has poisonous snakes smuggled to her in a basket of figs. She


proclaims she will go to meet her husband, but as she takes the asp (a kind of
snake) to her breast, she wishes the snake could call out against Caesar as an "as
unpolished," meaning one outdone in craftiness in the contest against her. She dies
with her pride intact, thinking of joining Antony, but also of having defeated
Caesar by robbing him of having conquered her. Caesar finds her and says she’ll
be buried next to Antony, letting the famous pair be together in death. His army
will solemnly attend the funeral, and then head back to Rome to finish up this
empire business they started.
ANTHONY AND CLEOPATRA

PLOT ANALYSIS

Rising action : Caesar lures Antony out of Egypt and back to Rome, and marries
Antony to his sister, Octavia. Antony eventually returns to Egypt
and Cleopatra, and Caesar prepares to lead an army against Antony.

Climax : Antony disgraces himself by fleeing the battle of Actium to


follow Cleopatra, betraying his own image of himself as a noble Roman.

falling action : Cleopatra abandons Antony during the second naval battle,
leaving him to suffer an insurmountable defeat.