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What is an example of parallelism in Brutus' speech?

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christylee | Student, Grade 10 | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted May 17, 2010 at 2:18 AM via web

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What is an example of parallelism in Brutus' speech?

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mstultz72 | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted May 17, 2010 at 3:01 AM (Answer #1)

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In Act III, scene ii of Julius Caesar, Brutus uses much parallelism (parallel construction: using the same pattern of words to show that two or more ideas have the same level of importance.)

He begins his speech thusly:

Then follow me, and give me audience, friends.

Notice the repetition of "me" in the object placement in both clauses.

Later, he says:

Those that will hear me speak, let 'em stay here;
Those that will follow Cassius, go with him;

Notice the repetition of the "those that will" at the beginning of each clause.

Still later, he returns to the "me" as object coupled with the "that you may":

hear me for my
cause, and be silent, that you may hear: believeme
for mine honour, and have respect to mine honour, that
you may
believe: censure me in your wisdom, and
awake your senses, that you may the better judge.

The speech builds as the level of parallelism increases.

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