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Free Study Guide-Julius Caesar by William Shakespeare-Free Booknotes
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ACT V, SCENE 4

Summary

In another part of the battlefield, Brutus enters in the midst of the battle and exhorts young Cato and Lucilius to fight valiantly. Cato bravely rushes in, but is quickly overpowered and dies. To protect his leader, Lucilius proclaims that he is Brutus when the enemy soldiers capture him. The soldiers, believing him, rush off to convey the good news to Antony. When Antony arrives, he asks for Brutus. Lucilius answers that Brutus is safe and will never be captured alive. As Antony departs, he instructs some of his soldiers to keep watch over Lucilius and sends some others to find out about Brutus.


Notes

This brief scene exhibits the conspirators making a final futile attempt to face their situation valiantly. Brutus exhorts young Cato, Lucilius, and his other soldiers not to despair even though he does not have any hopes of winning the battle. Young Cato's death-cry against tyranny is sadly ironic, since he has waged a war that will result in a far greater tyranny than Caesar could ever have mustered. Lucilius pretends to be Brutus when he is captured by Antony's men; it is a valiant attempt on his part to give Brutus an opportunity to escape. Antony is summoned and quickly realizes that Brutus has not been captured. Brutus, however, has absolutely no chance of victory, and the action moves rapidly towards the defeat of the conspirators and Brutus' tragic self-destruction. Antony is so confident of winning that he hands over the battle to his soldiers and decides to wait in Octavius' tent for the final victory.

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Free Study Guide-Julius Caesar by William Shakespeare-Free Plot Summary
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