Why is Shakespeare's Julius Caesar play named after Julius Caesar when he is only in the play for the first half of it? Should the play be named Marcus Brutus, for instance? Discuss.

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Bruce Bergman eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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We may be able to argue that Julius Caesar is a representative character, symbolic of the same flaws demonstrated by each and every one of the politicians in the play. He is ambitious, a trait which leads to his downfall (like Brutus and Cassius). He desires greatness for his country, but only through himself, insisting on placing himself in the center of every decision (like Antony).

So, even if the play doesn't feature Caesar as a character, it is his character that the play explores, if symbolically and obliquely.

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Julius Caesar is known as one of the most powerful and influential leaders ever.  Even the word "Czar," meaning leader, is a derivative...

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Caesar, though not nessissarily the main character, is the one who instigates everything that happens. If not for him, then Brutus would not have had this secret to keep, the conspiracy would not have happened, the fight would not have happened, etc. If he had not existed, things would have been completely different, and there would be no story.

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