Julius Caesar by William Shakespeare. Published by MobileReference (mobi).
Julius Caesar by William Shakespeare. Published by MobileReference (mobi).

 
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This is an electronic edition of the complete book complemented by author biography. This book features the table of contents linked to every act and scene. The book was designed for optimal navigation on the Kindle, PDA, Smartphone, and other electronic readers. It is formatted to display on all electronic devices including the Kindle, Smartphones and other Mobile Devices with a small display.

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Julius Caesar is a tragedy by William Shakespeare, believed to have been written in 1599. It portrays the conspiracy against the Roman dictator of the same name, his assassination and its aftermath. It is one of several Roman plays that he wrote, based on true events from Roman history, which also include Coriolanus and Antony and Cleopatra.

Although the title of the play is Julius Caesar, Caesar is not the central character in its action; he appears in only three scenes, and is killed at the beginning of the third act. The protagonist of the play is Marcus Brutus, and the central psychological drama is his struggle between the conflicting demands of honour, patriotism, and friendship.

The play reflected the general anxiety of England over succession of leadership. At the time of its creation and first performance, Queen Elizabeth, a strong ruler, was elderly and had refused to name a successor, leading to worries that a civil war similar to that of Rome might break out after her death.

- Excerpted from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

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Customer Reviews:

  • Et tu Brute? Betrayal, Power and Pride
    We've all heard how great Shakespeare is, how the `experts' say he is the undisputed King of English Literature. Many books have been written about his plays and sonnets, explaining the intricacies of his verse and the subtlety in the lines. His command of the English language is phenomenal and his works have been rightfully showered with praise. To me, however it is not Shakespeare's technical genius that draws people, rather it is his keen insight into human nature. This makes his plays still relevant in our modern age.

    Some would argue about with the need to read plays that have outdated words and a style of speaking that is so foreign to our day and age. Now, I am definitely not an English scholar, but I'm pretty sure that the majority of the people that attended Shakespeare's play did not speak in the way that Shakespeare's characters do, but they still loved it not so much for the style of speaking but for the way Shakespeare was able to speak what many people had trouble grasping in their own mind. This is what made Shakespeare a genius in my opinion.

    I read this play some years back and loved it then, but just recently I decided to read the play aloud with my girlfriend. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and I think this is the way the play was meant to be `absorbed'; by listening to the characters speak. Find someone with whom you can read the play aloud, failing that try reading it aloud rather than in your mind, (although this is not as much fun).

    Julius Ceasar, as you have no doubt divined from the other reviews is about (you guessed it) Julius Ceasar and his triumph over Pompey, and about the band of conspirators who would remove him from power. There are a lot of memorable lines in the play, which you must have heard elsewhere such as "Cowards day many times before their deaths" or the excellent passage about seizing the opportunity "There is a tide in the affairs of men, which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune..." Read the play to find these and many more other gems.

    Julius Ceasar is a very short play; only a few pages and shouldn't take long to read. The joy from reading it outweighs whatever difficulties there may be in comprehension due to the language. I recommend this book to everyone wanting to find out why Shakespeare is the greatest playwright ever....more info

  • summaries excellent; easy to follow and study afterwards
    i definitely recommend this book. i am a sophomore in high school, and i usually despise reading shakespearean works, but this book spells out everything for you and has review questions in the back to help you study. A++...more info
  • Shakespeare's vying supermen
    "Julius Caesar", as a play, breathes the altogether purer air of antique virtues. The action centres around the ambitions and loyalties, both personal and political, of Shakespeare's supermen, Brutus, Caesar, Cassius and Mark Antony. The ending sees the suicide of Brutus, properly the play's dramatic hero. Sincere but blind, Brutus, is motivated by the greater good of restoring the Republic to such an extent that he is willing to sacrifice even his dearest friend, Caesar, to this design. Swayed by the spiteful malcontent Cassius, he unwisely underestimates Mark Antony, who emerges as a formidable adversary of Brutus's. Haunted by Caesar's spirit, which indicates that his influence will also prove to be posthumous, Brutus realises his error and submits to his fate. The notion of Brutus's "noble suicide", which is repugnant to Christian doctrine, is introduced in the end by Shakespeare, fully evoking Brutus's greatness of soul in avenging the friend he killed, Caesar, by killing himself: "Caesar now be still./I killed not thee with half so good a will." As a worthy character, he devises a grand plan but fails and so submits to his own code. He punishes Caesar for his ambition and then punishes himself for his own. Unlike "Hamlet", "Julius Caesar" is more compact, less complex. The action and psychological characterisation are simpler and the language is more hard-trimmed. The tragic elements of error and chance are present throughout the play and the ending neatly combines an address of the tragic hero's principal flaw and a meting out of justice....more info
  • Exactly what I was looking for!
    My aim is to cover shakespeare this year with my 9th grader (I home-school). I purchased this book along with "Twelfth Night". I am so happy I did. The whole original text is included along with a translation of the play in todays english. At the end of the book there are MANY, MANY exercises and tests for the student to complete to ensure they have understood what they read. With this book, you can literally give it to your child and leave them to it. Obviously, you may need to give some guidance along the way, but it will be minimal. A homeschooler's dream because there is very little lesson prep. I will definately be buying other titles in this series!...more info
  • Interesting history but poor resolution
    Having read much historically about the the Roman emperors, I was very excited to be reading JULIUS CAESAR. It was interesting at first to compare the characters of the play to the same names we read about in history books. I felt that this is one of Shakespeare's most difficult books to interpret in today's language. Even though this edition does have extensive foot (or in this book, side) notes, the reading process was confusing having to look back in forth. If you are just reading this play to read some Shakespeare, try another less difficult Shakespeare work, like A COMEDY OF ERRORS. Thsi is much easier to understand, and for beginners, you will probably enjoy it more. But if you are a beginner looking for a tragedy, try ROMEO and JULIET. While the language can be confusing at time, this classic story should really be read by all....more info
  • Once again, morality vs. politics
    This superb play by Shakespeare somehow reminded me of Antigona, the first play which directly examined the always complex interplay and usual confrontation between political reason and moral reason. This play is an excellent account of the immediately previous and subsequent days of Julius Caesar's assasination by Brutus, his best friend, and other conspirators. Brutus is persuaded by the resentful Cassius that Caesar has betrayed Rome by abandoning the Republic and turning to Dictatorship. Brutus gets to be convinced that, in order to save the Republic, Caesar must be killed. This puts him in a great dilemma, for he loves Caesar and he's his closest friend. Here we see in an acute form the way in which political power gets in conflict with morality and feelings. Friendship, power and betrayal are the basic subjects of this excellent piece of work....more info
  • great help for those who struggle reading
    I purchased this for a student who struggles with reading, but wants to participate in class. This allowed person to hear words while following along in book. Perfect!...more info
  • Simply the Best
    The Arden Shakespeare series is the best, for either the beginning of scholarly research, the average needs of the English student, or as a resource for the informed theater professional. My only note of caution is for a casual reader who may find the extensive footnoting more of an interruption than a help. Love this book, love them all....more info
  • Exciting and Fun to Read
    Next to "Macbeth," this is Shakespeare's most violent and brutal play. It's also very exciting and easy to understand. The only thing that scares me more than Banquo's ghost from "Macbeth" is the horrible thought of a person choking on hot coals....more info
  • Boring! Boring! Boring!
    Boring, boring, boring, boring, boring boring, boring, boring, boring, boring, boring boring, boring, boring, boring, boring, boring boring, boring, boring, boring, boring, boring boring, boring, boring, boring, boring, boring boring, boring, boring, boring, boring, boring boring....more info
  • Ceasar was powerful and then lost his power.
    Ceasar,waas a very powerful man in his day and time. Mark Antony was a good guy with a bad reputation. Ceasar said, "Forget not in your speed, Antonius, To Touch Calpurina; for our elders say The barren, touched in this holy chase, Shake off their sterile curse."...more info
  • This book really helped me boost my GPA!
    I used this book along with the original to help me study for my test on Julius Caesar. I was having trouble understanding it, but this book put it into terms I could understand, without losing the actual meaning! I really recommend it!...more info
  • Big-Don's Review of a Shakespeare Classic
    Once again, Shakespeare writes another masterpiece!!! At times I was scared, and others I was nervous. I couldn't help but read this story all at once. I never set it down for a minute! I recommend this play for the light reader, or even for the hardcore Skakespeare fan!...more info
  • JULIUS CAESAR IS UNBELIEVABLY INCREDIBLE!!!!
    This is certainly one of Shakespeare's greatest works. Every individual character has been perfectly planned before the play was written, and each has his/her own unique characteristics. The plot is well-known, but Shakespeare adds the themes of betrayal, love, and distrust into the mix, making it a nonforgetable story. This is definately a masterpiece to be reread over and over again. LONG LIVE JULIUS CAESAR! GO SM!! WE ARE HIS #1 FANS!!!...more info
  • I liked Julius Ceasar
    It was really educational, and it was also fun to read. I would mind reading it again. There was action and suspence threw the whole thing. Sure, it's hard to understand at times, but if your study it out and ponder it, I promise you will understand. I really enjoyed this book. I hope others will read it as well....more info
  • The best scholarly edition available
    In the race among the major Shakespeare editors (Arden Third Series, Oxford, Cambridge), Arden has seriously lagged behind. Not so anymore. Prof. Daniell's edition is thorough, smart, concise, eminently readable and often highly provocative. His introductory material not only sums up four hundred years of thinking about the play both in the study and on the stage, but it also adds new insights and dimensions. Tiny criticisms: some of the explicatory material in the notes is a little to British for an American reader to comprehend, and one or two editorial choices ("Is tomorrow, boy, the first of March?") are simply wrongheaded. But these never seriously mar what is, and will remain, the best scholarly edition of JC for years to come....more info
  • It's Not All Greek.
    When I first read JULIUS CAESAR as a sophomore in high school, I found it to be a decent play, but other than some really cool lines, didn't think it was that great. After having re-read the play and now having taught it to my own classes of sophomore English students, I have a much greater appreciation for the play. Granted, JULIUS CAESAR is not one of Shakespeare's greatest plays nor is it even one of his best histories. And despite much of it being written in the classic Shakespearean iambic pentameter, it really isn't all that poetic. There are moments when the language is extremely vivid and moving, e.g. Mark Antony's speech to the citizens of Rome or some of Brutus' personal soliloquies. However, compared to HAMLET or KING LEAR or HENRY V, the play seems juvenile by comparison. However, it is that very unpolished, amatuerism that makes the play so relevant and easy to connect with younger audiences.

    Though Julius Caesar is the title character, the play isn't really about Caesar. Instead, the play is about Caesar's closest friend, Marcus Brutus. Through Brutus, the play examines exactly what it means to be noble, what is honor, and the nature of friendship. In the course of the play, Brutus is led to believe and becomes convinced that in doing a most dishonorable act, he is doing the most honorable thing he possibly can to save Rome and all the ideals he has staked his life upon. Yet, his decision brings him to kill his best friend and ultimately brings about the end of the republic which he had tried to save.

    Contrary to what I had been led to believe before I began teaching this play, students really enjoy JULIUS CAESAR. It is full of murder and betrayal. They enjoy the violence and the theme of betrayal is something they are all able to relate to. I have also found that student seem to sympathize much more with Caesar than with Brutus. They can't understand why Brutus would kill his best friend. The concept of caring more about a group of people (family, country, etc.) than one single person seems beyond them. I've tried to use Stephen King's THE DEAD ZONE to help them understand this better (in that story the question is "If you were able to stop Hitler before he became Hitler, even if he was your closest friend, would you?").

    Overall, though JULIUS CAESAR is not one of Shakespeare's greatest plays, it is a great play to introduce people both to the brilliance of Shakespeare and to one of history's most pivotal moments; the time when Rome became an Empire....more info
  • Shakespeare Outdoes Himself!
    This was the first play performed at the Globe Theatre. For that reason alone, this play deserves special attention. But the characters, the language, and this interesting situation represent Shakespeare's finest efforts. Cassius is ruthless with a malicious attitude. But he honestly fears what Caesar will do if he is crowned. Brutus is a good and honest man. He contemplates joining Cassius to kill Caesar despite the fact that Caesar loves him as a friend. (In history as well, Caesar was notably kind to Brutus.) But yet he too fears that if Caesar is crowned, Rome will bleed. Mark Antony is convincing as Caesar's loyal aid who SEEMS insignificant at first. But after Caesar is killed, he emerges as the most powerful and intelligent character in the play. What makes this play so phenomenal is that we can easily understand and sympathize with any of these major characters. (Even though they are on opposite sides.) What's left? Only chilling omens like the Soothsayer, the storm, the ghost of Caesar, etc. Only memorable passages like Mark Antony's famous 'honorable' speech. If you like this play, I suggest the B & W version where James Mason does Brutus, John Gielgud does Cassius, and Marlon Brando does Mark Antony....more info
  • Noble Words--Ignoble Deeds
    I've read the play several times, studied it in school, and seen it produced, but never have I been so struck by the contrast between word and deed as when I listened to this audiocassette. At every point the Romans speak beautifully of honor, virtue, courage, and other noble qualities. If we listened only to their words, we might think them noble, but when we see their deeds, we find the play thick with irony. The speakers must either be hypocrits or have no self-objectivity. Portia, Brutus' wife, emerges as the only admirable character, but the play still commands our full attention. Mighty words are match by mighty deeds, but noble thoughts are checked by ignoble actions. When Antony pronounces Brutus "the noblest Roman of them all", he merely recognizes Brutus as the best of a bad lot. Regardless of the villainy of the characters, the play is superb, and audio may well be the best medium for fully enjoying it....more info
  • Extremely helpful!
    I like Shakespeare, but find his language hard to decipher at times. Standard texts have footnotes to help you to understand how he uses certain words, but after looking up a few dozen of these, I find myself starting to lose the thread of the story line. The "Shakespeare Made Easy" approach has been a godsend for me. Now, whenever I run into a difficult passage, I can glance over to the other side of the book and read the same passage in plain English. A light bulb blinks on, and I say, "Aha! That's what this means!" Unfamiliar words are instantly translated for me as I see them in the context of a passage which I now understand fully. I've read Julius Caesar three or four times previously, but never so fluidly and with such enjoyment and understanding as I just did with the help of the "Shakespeare Made Easy" book....more info
  • Simply the Best
    The Arden Shakespeare series is the best, for either the beginning of scholarly research, the average needs of the English student, or as a resource for the informed theater professional. My only note of caution is for a casual reader who may find the extensive footnoting more of an interruption than a help. Love this book, love them all....more info
  • Movers and Shakespeares
    Like du Maurier's Rebecca or Tolkien's Sauron, Julius Caesar is to the play which bears his name less a focal presence than a force largely off-stage which provokes the choices and actions of the more evident characters. Caesar does put in several brief appearances during the first three acts, but it is Marcus Brutus whose nobility, naivete, seduction, treachery, rationalization, and ultimate downfall make up the overarching plot. Shakespeare here avoids taking sides, however, and so provides us with a shrewd study in the diverse motives and attitudes that always precede insurrection, and in the chaos that inevitably follows.


    As with most of the Arden series, this critical edition represents superior scholarship and valuable reader assistance. Its extensive footnotes should illumine most instances of unfamiliar language or allusion, and an Appendix provides relevant excerpts from Plutarch's LIVES, which Shakespeare consulted for many of his details. Those new to JULIUS CAESAR, however, are best advised to begin with the text of the play itself (in the volume's central section), saving the so-called 'Introduction' until afterwards; for Daniell's excellent discussion relies heavily on citations of the play's content, and his insights are apt to be lost on the reader who has, as yet, little or no frame of reference.


    It should be noted, too, that the Arden Shakespeare editions are best suited to serious students and amateurs already acquainted with the Bard and aspiring to more advanced appreciation. Having come late to the field myself, I mean no condescension in suggesting that someone just setting out may find the wealth of material here a bit overwhelming. The potential rewards of Shakespearean discovery are incalculable, and it is always tragic when worthy ambition burns itself out, for want of patience, by attempting too much too soon. I began with more modest editions, such as the Signet Classics or Pelican, which I found very accessible and sufficiently annotated to provide the help I then needed. Arden, which has been issuing and revising its series since 1899, will still be around when one is ready for it.
    ...more info
  • English class strikes again
    For all you who take Shakespeare, or even if you don't, this is a pretty entertaining play, and not so difficult to understand. Plus, its short. I probably wouldn't have read this if it hadn't been assigned, but it is a cool play. If you have to read it for school, don't worry, you may enjoy it and even if you dont understand Shakespearean writing, there's tons of notes to help....more info
  • brilliance of Shakespeare
    Julius Caesar by William Shakespeare

    This is one of Shakespeares most famous plays. I really enjoyed reading Kindle edition of the play. I would recommend this ebook to anyone who is interested in history or wants to read a compelling classic. ...more info
  • A great place to start
    If you are going to read a little Shakespeare, JULIUS CAESAR is a great place to start. It is the only play by Shakespeare that I understood in high school, and most of my 10th-grade students seem to understand it. Give it a shot....more info
  • Shakespere Made Easy: Julius Ceaser
    This makes reding Shakespere easy and fun. I highly recommend it to Junior High and High School readers of Shakespere. I loved the book....more info
  • Great edition of a great play
    I really enjoyed reading this edition of the play. Each scene is proceded by a summary of the secene and followed by commentary on the scene, and there are notes alongside the text explaining unusual words/phrases. As an actor, I have been reading Shakespeare for quite awhile, and I still found this book very helpful. If you are new to reading Shakespeare, I particularly recommend this because you will find it very helpful....more info
  • Nature might say this was one of his finest works
    Of all the things that I have seen it seems to me most strange that our dear Shakespeare should write such wondrous plays that even those his critics call less than his greatest do shine so strongly in the eyes of mankind that they do stun us with their poetry and their wit their insight into human character and humanity. So is it with Julius Caesar .For Ceasar is a most political play in which dear Brutus and his conspirators do find a way on the Ides of March of doing away with great Caesar. But Brutus who as you know is Ceasar's dear friend and in the name of friendship and love of Rome did do great Ceasar away , is taken to task by Ceasar's other mignon dear Anthony who in his mindful farewell speech does set a standard for political rhetoric all mankind may have its eyes upon .For dear Anthony does let the Roman rabble know how much their Ceasar loved them , and does show how the ambition attributed to him by Brutus is nought but their imagining. And how great Caeasar loves them all. And so he makes not only the good works of Caeasar live after him but turns the general public against those very conspirators. And in this action and in what ensues the war which follows great Brutus too does come to his bitter end defeated by that Antony who allied with Ceasar's true heir makes a general reparation of the wrong . Oh what a wondrous play and what great speeches and immortal words .Think only of this , think only of such words as Antony's ' His life was gentle and the elements so mixed in him that Nature might stand up and say to all the world / This was a man.
    Oh great great play for all who would study the intrigues of Man and hear in great Shakespeare's declaiming the vanity and folly of all ambition's greatness while making their play immortal through his words. ...more info
  • The Tragedy of the Tragically Unaesthetically Pleasing Review
    "The Tragedy of Julius Caesar" by William Shakespeare proves to be an amazing read if one thoroughly enjoys the challenge of deciphering the selective form of writing and occasionally complicated dialect. This classic play is based on the true, factual account of the assassination of Julius Caesar as it truly took place in 44 B.C. Of course, Shakespeare has completely made the story his own through the use of comic relief, characterization, and wonderful original composition. Julius Caesar, the ambitious and prideful dictator of Rome, has returned home from a victorious battle against his fellow Triumvirate, Pompey. As he celebrates and relishes his absolute power, little does he suspect the growing opposition of conspirators, some of whom he would never expect. This read is certainly worthwhile if one has a good taste for tragedy and does not mind a challenge....more info
  • Great Stuff
    I thought that this was one of the best plays, shakespeare or otherwise that i have ever read. i could feel the pain and remorse of brutus see ceasar's tragic flaws and root against the bad guys. i thought antony was a very good man and that he cared for brutus and that he realized that he was one of the last real romans....more info
  • A classic
    One of the classics -- we all had to read it in high school, but it's remarkably easier to get through than it was when I was 16. ...more info
  • Excellent Shakespeare Classic
    Shakespeare wrote Julius Caesar in about 1599. The play was the first of three Roman plays. Shakespeare based the source material for the play on a translation of a work by the Greek philosopher and biographer Plutarch, called "The lives of the Noble Greeks and Romans". Shakespeare, like Plutarch, praises and criticises the actions of the main characters in the assassination of Julius Caesar. However, the historical events in the play are fairly accurate, although the playwright sometimes changed the sequence and timing of events and added his limitless imagination to produce a timeless play that has been enacted and enjoyed by millions of people worldwide over the centuries.

    The play is set in a period of political instability in Rome. The people of Rome celebrate Caesar victory over Pompey, their former leader. However, there are officials that are concerned about Caesar's growing power. The Romans were then aware that absolute power is open to abuse (there are people today who still do not know this simple fact). Among those concerned about the growing power of Caesar are Cassius and Brutus, who are both followers of Caesar.

    Cassius persuades Brutus that something needs to be done to thwart Caesar's growing ambitions. Brutus has a problem with his conscience but ultimately decides that it is in the best interests of Rome that Caesar is eliminated.

    Caesar receives warnings about the impending danger. During a festival that Caesar attends, he is warned "Beware the Ides of March". Caesar, however, dismisses the Soothsayer's warnings. When the Ides of March arrive and while Caesar is due to go to be crowned, warnings in the form of storms, bad omens and his wife's horrible dreams initially persuade Caesar to stay at home. However, Caesar decides to go after being advised that if he did not show up, Senators might change their minds about crowning him emperor. On entering the capitol, the conspirators stab Caesar to death.

    Mark Anthony, a very close ally of Caesar, initially pretends to go along with the conspirators but he is determined to avenge his death. When Brutus addresses the confused crowd to drum up support for the assassination, Mark Anthony cleverly and expertly manages to turn the crowd against the conspirators and incites them to riot. With popular support in Rome, the triumvirs Anthony, Octavious and Lepidus plan to fight Brutus and Cassius. Brutus's conscience still troubles him and he sees Caesars ghost. Fighting takes place and Cassius and Brutus are defeated and both commit suicide to save their honour. The triumvirs then seize power after avenging Caesar.

    ...more info
  • Helpfulness
    Just want to say hi to all....more info
  • Julius Caesar
    This is one of Shakespeares most famous plays. I was required to read this play for school and I found that it was best when it was read aloud than when I read it too myself. It has been debated on whether Brutus or Caesar was the main character of the play and having read it i can see why. Julius Caesar is an essential role in the play as the dictator of Rome but Brutus is also a very important character. It is Brutus' internal conflict on whether or not he should betray his friend for the good of Rome that is the main subject of the beginning of the play. Also, many of Brutus' flaws like his bad judgement of character fuels the plot of the play. The lanuage is a little difficult to read but it enhances the play and the story. I would recommend this book to anyone who is interested in history or wants to read a compelling classic....more info
  • Teacher Knows Best
    Diana Sweeney is a teacher. She not only teaches Shakespeare, she teaches Shakespeare to students who have limited English skills. She also produces the works of Shakespeare with her students(including, can you believe it, a production of Titus?). I urge my students to use Cliff Notes because they too are limited in English. This new version of Julius Caesar is so readable. Sweeney writes with the student in mind at all times and this fact shows. What a valuable tool this work is!!...more info
  • Shakespear is Wonderful
    I recently read this book in my 9th grade english class and to tell you the truth I was amazed by this piece of littiture that William Shakespear has written. This book impressed me so much I am going to read more of his work. This book is a tradgey on Julius Caesar. This book is basically about killing Caesar and when Caesar gets killed by the conspirators the readers get to read about Mark Anthony's revenge....more info
  • Julius Caesar
    I loved "Romeo and Juliet", "Hamlet" and other Shakespeare novels, so I thought that I might try a history Shakespeare had written for my advanced English class. However, I wasn't very impressed. I had thought that Shakespeare's beautiful poetry would add much needed excitement to the book, but, alas, it prevailed. However, if one does not try to interpret what Shakespeare is saying and just reads the words aloud in rhythm, it sounds so eloquent and put together. Thus, I give it three stars....more info

 

 
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