Antony’s speech in Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar and the ancient sources

Aldo Setaioli


The speeches delivered at Caesar’s funeral by Brutus and Antony in Shake­speare’s Julius Caesar are both influenced by the Tudor translation of Appian’s historical work. Possibly Shakespeare also echoes Suetonius’s remark about the lack of a formal lauda­tio when he has Antony say “I come to bury Caesar, not to praise him”. Appian’s influence is further con­firmed by the numerous theatrical features in his rendering of Antony’s speech echoed in Shakespeare as well as by lexical correspondences with Appian’s Tudor translation. 


Shakespeare; Julius Caesar; Antony; Suetonius; Appian

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