How Brutus was Unhonourable

Essay by voodooflameHigh School, 10th gradeA-, January 2014

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The Dishonourable Brutus

In William Shakespeare's "Julius Caesar", Brutus, seen by many as honourable, was also a conspirator. Brutus, the honourable conspirator? Honourable is used to express those who are bold, truthful, and humble, sticking to their beliefs. A conspirator is someone who raises his or her hand in committing an unlawful or harmful act. One cannot be both honourable and a conspirator, so when Anthony refers to Brutus as "the noblest roman of them all", it is unsupported for three distinct reasons; Brutus was power hungry, Brutus was too trusting, and Brutus was a coward.

Brutus had a thirst for power in Rome even though he claims that he'd "rather be a villager/Than to repute himself a son of Rome." (I.ii.172-173). Before the conspiracy began, Cassius was able to convey to Brutus that Caesar is no better than Brutus:

Brutus and Caesar: what should be in that "Caesar"?

Why should that name be sounded more than yours"

Write then together, yours is as fair a name;

Sound them, it doth become the mouth as well;

Weigh them, it is as heavy; conjure with 'em,

"Brutus" will start a spirit as soon as "Caesar."


This began Brutus' idealism towards killing Caesar for the betterment of Rome, but subconsciously, Brutus knew he could take power if Caesar was gone. Immediately after, the conspirators met and discussed their plan of action. Among them, Brutus was the most respected so he quickly became their leader and when they wanted Cicero to join, Brutus argued, "O, name him not! Let us not break with him;" (II.i.150), because he would no longer have total control of the group, as Cicero was well reputed and more experienced as well. Skipping to Act 4, we see that Brutus forms an army and once again...