This posting compares the Antony of Julius Caesar with the Antony of Antony and Cleopatra. It also discusses the difference between Juliet and Cleopatra in terms of maturity level, emotional depth, connection to reality, and genuineness of purpose.
First, as you analyze Mark Antony of Julius Caesar, please note that he is Caesar's personal friend. Antony's speech to the public after Caesar's death further marks a climatic moment in the play. His speech launches an assault against Caesar's assassins, exposing their wicked ways. His ability to speak the truth further exemplifies his strength in character.
In addition, he also serves as a complex character because he struggles with morality and personal ethics in his allegiance to both Brutus and Caesar. These painstaking loyalty decisions are evident as Antony sends a message to Brutus with a servant. For example, Antony proclaims that although he loved and served the living Caesar, he does not love Caesar the dead man. Thus, please note that Antony creates a "smokescreen" as he maintains his love for Brutus.
This message of allegiance convinces Brutus and is a crucial part of the play. Antony even shakes the bloody hands of the conspirators, proclaiming,
"Friends am I with you all and love you all,
Upon this hope, that you shall give me reasons
Why and wherein Caesar was dangerous" (Act III, Scene I, Lines 222-224).
Antony's speech and clever rhetoric reveal his tactics and intelligence. Although he has no true intention of joining forces with Brutus and Cassius, he seizes this chance to eulogize Caesar's body. Instead of supporting the assassins' decision publicly, Antony further reveals his loyalty to Caesar as hails Caesar's memory and honor as a man who helped the people:
"He hath brought many captives home to Rome
Whose ransoms did the general coffers fill:
Did this in Caesar seem ambitious?
When that the poor have cried, Caesar hath wept:
Ambition should be made of sterner stuff."
Even though he acknowledges Caesar's ambition as a downfall, his strategy unravels and is carefully implanted. Besides his speech, Antony moves the masses by presenting Caesar's bloody garment to persuade the public to seek revenge for his death.
Again, his loyalty and admiration for Caesar is evident. However, Antony also shows empathy toward Brutus as he laments his death by ...
Antony characters within Shakespeare are discussed and addressed.