"Men at some time are masters of their fates; the fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in ourselves, that we are underlings." Describe Cassius's intentions. What does he aim to achieve...

"Men at some time are masters of their fates; the fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in ourselves, that we are underlings."

Describe Cassius's intentions. What does he aim to achieve through delivering these lines to Brutus?

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readerofbooks | College Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

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These words occur in scene two of the play. The context is when Brutus and Cassius hear the crowd roar. It seems that the people are praising Caesar for something. Brutus states that he fears that the people will try to make Caesar King. This becomes Cassius's entry point into feeling Brutus out to see if he will join the conspiracy to kill Caesar.

Here it the conversation:

BRUTUS What means this shouting? I do fear, the people Choose Caesar for their king. CASSIUS Ay, do you fear it? Then must I think you would not have it so.

Based on this context, the words of Cassius are intended to bring Brutus over to the conspiracy. Cassius wants to remind Brutus that fate is not what governs the affairs of people or even a nation. People have to make decision. In this way people become masters of their own destiny. To be more pointed, Cassius wants Brutus, a honorable and virtuous man, to join the conspiracy against Caesar. 

Sources:

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