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In Julius Caesar, how does Octavius appear by the end of the play?
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Although Octavius does not actually enter the play until Act IV, by the end he appears as one of the foremost characters. He has triumphed over Brutus and Cassius and along with Antony he now stands at the apex of Roman political and military power.
Octavius grows in stature throughout the last two acts of the play. Young, laconic and practical-minded, he initially appears somewhat in the shadow of the older and more experienced Antony but is quick to assert himself. He refuses to let Antony dictate to him on the battlefield, sending out an ominous hint as he does so:
Antony: Why do you cross me in this exigent?
Octavius: I do not cross you; but I will do so (V.i.19-20)
Octaivus, then,threatens to 'cross' Antony, to supersede him in future - and indeed,the historical Octavius did go on to overthrow Antony and amass supreme power for himself as the first emperor of Rome.
Overall, Octavius appears in this play as a man of few words and decisive action. Altogether he comes to appear as an imposing and impressive character, who also pays due tribute to his chief opponent, Brutus, at the end of the play.
Posted by gpane on September 8, 2013 at 10:40 AM (Answer #1)
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