In "Julius Caesar", what is the irony in the clash over Antony's death?

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katemschultz eNotes educator| Certified Educator

When planning Caesar's assassination, Cassius suggests also killing Marc Antony because his is so loyal to Caesar. Brutus immediately dismisses this idea as "too bloody" and say that, if they kill Antony, they will be seen as "butchers". Brutus then goes to liken Caesar to the head of the body and Antony to a limb, saying the limb can do little once the head has been cut off.

The irony comes in that Antony uses Caesar's funeral to stir the anger of the plebians, who run Brutus and Cassius out of town. This eventually leads to the war between Cassius/Brutus and Antony/Octavian. By not killing Antony when they had a chance (an easier chance), Brutus leads the country to a war and eventually, leads himself and Cassius to their deaths.

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Julius Caesar

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