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JULIUS CAESAR is the story of a man's personal dilemma
over moral action, set against a backdrop of strained
political drama. Julius Caesar, an able general and a
conqueror returns to Rome amidst immense popularity after
defeating the sons of Pompey.
The people celebrate his victorious return and Mark Antony
offers him the Crown which he refuses. Jealous of Caesar's
growing power and afraid he may one day become a
dictator, Cassius instigates a conspiracy to murder Caesar.
He realises that to gain legitimacy in the eyes of the
Romans, he must win over the noble Brutus to his side for
Brutus is the most trusted and respected in Rome. Brutus,
the idealist, joins the conspiracy feeling that everyone is
driven by motives as honourable as his own. Ironically,
Caesar is murdered at the foot of Pompey's statue.

About the author

William Shakespeare
(1564-1616) is an English
playwright and poet,
recognized in much of the
world as the greatest of all
dramatists. Hundreds of
editions of his plays have
been published, including
translations in all major
languages. Scholars have
written thousands of
books and articles about
his plots, characters,
themes, and language. He
is the most widely quoted

Main Characters
1) Julius Caesar The greatest and the
most powerful of the Romans. He is
assassinated by Brutus, Cassius and a
band of who feel Caesar is too ambitious
and wishes to be crowned as a king.






Character sketch of Caesar

2) Calpurnia Caesars wife.

3) Mark Antony Caesars

loyal friend.

4) Marcus Brutus Caesars great friend

who joins the conspiracy to murder Caesar
because of his love for Rome and

5) Cassius Inspirer and organizer

of the conspiracy.

6) Decius Brutus Co-conspirator

in Caesars assassination.


Julius Caesar is a highly successful but ambitious
political leader of Rome and his goal is to
become an unassailable dictator. Caesar is
warned that he must "beware the Ides of March"
. The prophecy comes true and Caesar is
assassinated. Marcus Brutus is a well respected
Roman senator who helps plan and carry out
Caesar's assassination which he believes will rid
Rome of a tyrant. Caesar's friend Mark Antony
provides the famous funeral oration ("Friends,
Romans, and countrymen") Brutus and Cassius
meet their inevitable defeat. Brutus, the noble
Roman, whose decision to take part in the

Death of
the Caesar



Major Themes :-

The major theme of Julius Caesar is that misused

power is a corruptive force. This is seen in the fact that
Caesar is a dictator suspected of being tyrannous, that
Cassius is so power hungry that he assassinates
Caesar, hoping to become more powerful himself, and
that Antony, Octavius, and Lepidus become a dictatorial
and tyrannical Triumvirate, worse than Caesar ever
hinted at being.

Minor Themes : goodness of loyalty, honor, and friendship;

the evil of pride, conspiracy, and anarchy;
the logic of political order;


1)Why are the tribunes Flavius and Marullus so upset at the
opening of the play?
Ans - The tribunes are angry that the working class citizens of Rome gather
to celebrate Caesars victory, while forgetting Pompey, the Roman hero (and
a part of the First Triumvirate that ruled Rome) who was killed in battle
alongside Caesar. Their hostility toward Caesar serves to introduce the deep
political divide that will become the central issue of the play.
2)What holiday are the Roman masses celebrating at the time of
Caesar's return?
Ans - Caesar's triumph coincides with the feast of Lupercal, which was
celebrated on February 15th. The festivities were in honour of Lupercus, the
god of nature (Pan in Greek mythology).
3)Describe Caesar's encounter with the soothsayer.
Ans - As Caesar passes through the crowd the soothsayer cries out to him,
warning him to "beware the ides of March." Caesar dismisses the soothsayer
as a dreamer and continues on. Caesars encounter with the soothsayer
foreshadows his assassination in the senate in 3.1. Note that in the ancient
Roman calendar the "ides" was the fifteenth day of March, May, July, and
October, and the thirteenth day of the other months. Gaius Julius Caesar
was assassinated on March 15, 44 BC.

4)How does Portia prove she is worthy to hear the plans of

her husband, Brutus?
Ans - Portia cuts herself in the thigh and suffers the pain of both the
wound and the infection it causes in silence. Her show of bravery and
self-control convinces Brutus she is "stronger than her sex" and he
agrees to confide in her, only to be interrupted before he has a
5)What is the significance of Caesar's dying words, "Et tu,
Brute? Then fall, Caesar!"?
Ans - The conspirators gather around Caesar and he sees his trusted
friend Brutus among them. Stunned that Brutus is among his
assassins, Caesar cries out, "and you too, Brutus?" This famous line is
important because it sets Brutus apart from the other conspirators.
There is no doubt that Brutus's self-serving and ambitious
accomplices have committed an indefensible act, but with Caesar's
final utterance we recognize that the self-sacrificing and noble Brutus
has perpetrated the same heinous crime his motivation is rendered
immaterial. For this moment, Brutus the idealist becomes Brutus the
6)How does Cassius die?
Ans - Cassius knows that he too will soon be captured by Antony and

7)Cassius asks Brutus what he plans to do if they should lose

the battle. What is Brutus's response?
Ans - Brutus says that, since he finds the act of suicide cowardly and
vile, he will have little choice but to be patient and yield to whatever
fate dictates . He adds that he will never return to Rome as a
prisoner. That Brutus nevertheless dies by his own hand at the end of
the play adds to his tragedy.
8)After an ominous dream, Calpurnia begs Caesar to stay
away from the senate and, at first, he agrees. What changes
his mind?
Ans - Decius, a conspirator whose role it is to guarantee Caesar is in
the Capitol that day, favourably interprets Calpurnia's dream and
then chides Caesar for yielding to his wife's whims. Decius adds that
the senate is planning again to offer Caesar a crown, and Caesar
gives in to vanity. He leaves Calpurnia and accompanies Decius to the
9)Explain the significance of Antony's final speech, beginning
with the line, "This was the noblest Roman of them all".
Ans - Antony's speech serves to restore Brutus to the position of
tragic hero. Antony can see in Brutus the morality he does not
himself possess - the capability to act selflessly for the common

The End

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