Julius Caesar Questions and Answers
by William Shakespeare

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Julius Caesar Appearance

What was the physical appearance of Julius Caesar, both historically and in Shakespeare's play?

 

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Greg Jackson, M.A. eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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There are more clues to the physical appearance of the historical Julius Caesar than there is of the character from Shakespeare's play. These descriptions come from Roman historians such as Suetonius, quoted in the other educator's answer. We also have some clues as to what he looked like from ancient Roman coins, busts, and statues. These, particularly the statues, show a glorified version of the Roman general and dictator, but they can still be informative. What we can tell is that he had receding hair, was relatively thin, and had a prominent nose. He would also have been cleanly shaven, as was the style for Romans during his period.

Shakespeare does not provide too many clues as to how he wanted Julius Caesar portrayed physically. He does emphasize his physical ailments, such as his partial deafness of which there is no historical proof. He also includes Caesar's tendency to suffer from seizures. There is a debate among historians as to whether or not Caesar suffered from this "Curse...

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