Brutus Was The Tragic Hero of Julius Caeser

Essay by DeadenedhateHigh School, 10th grade July 2004

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Tragic Hero: The Ones Fate Has Left Forlorn

A tragic hero has the potential for greatness but is inexorably predestined to fail. He is trapped in a situation where he cannot win. He makes some sort of disastrous mistake, which initiates his fall from grace. In William Shakespeare's play, Julius Caesar, there are a number of characters who could be considered tragic heroes; however, the one true tragic hero in this play is none other than Caesar's best friend, Brutus.

A tragic hero has good and noble qualities. Brutus clearly portrays these qualities throughout the play. He was a genuinely nice person. He did not wish to harm anyone, and really only wanted the general good for all people. When struggling with the decision of whether or not to kill Caesar, Brutus states, "It must be by his death; and for my part, I know no personal cause to spurn at him, But for the general…(Act II, scene i 10-12)."

He killed Caesar; not out of envy or greed, but for the benefit of the Roman people. Also, Brutus wished not to die at the hands of his enemies; he wished to die in a way that was considered honorable at the time, and prove that he was loyal to his ideals by not taking his own life. Brutus states this here:

"Our enemies have beaten us to the pit.

It is more worthy to leap in ourselves

Than tarry till they push us.

Good Volumnius, That know'st that we two went to school together.

Even for that our love old, I prithee

Hold my sword-hilts whilst I run on it (Act V, scene v 27-31)."

Tragic heroes often make a fatal error in judgment. Although Brutus killed Caesar with good intentions, he was destined to fail in some...