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Brutus

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Does anybodi know what was Brutus motive?I think he didn't have a motive to kill Caesar

 

The motive was to restore the Republic. There may have been jealousy and other emotional responses involved, but it was clear that the reason for the assassination was because they believed Caesar was a tyrant.

 

Brutus was a misguided soul, easily manipulated and was steered in that direction. He didn't have the brain capacity to have his own motive, I think someone convinced him that Caesar was a tyrant, therefore, must be eliminated for the good of Rome. But, I don't think Brutus was too mindful of the restoration of the Republic and all the political strategy behind the assassination, which ultimately failed anyway.

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In my opinion, those who think the events of 70-44 BC were all just a bunch of grudges being settled have no understanding of the philosophical and constitutional issues at stake.

 

This is probably a bit off topic (I should probably start a new one), but it could be argued that, unlike in the timeframe mentioned above, the state of the Empire in the period thereafter (44-31 BC) was determined entirely by personal grudges: both Octavian and Antony were Caesareans, and when they fell out ideologies played second fiddle to their individual bitterness towards each other.

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This is probably a bit off topic (I should probably start a new one), but it could be argued that, unlike in the timeframe mentioned above, the state of the Empire in the period thereafter (44-31 BC) was determined entirely by personal grudges: both Octavian and Antony were Caesareans, and when they fell out ideologies played second fiddle to their individual bitterness towards each other.

 

I'd agree that there were no substantive ideological differences between Antony and Octavian, except that Antony had no political vision whereas Octavian apparently did. More generally, after Octavian, political rivalries seemed exclusively personal.

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I'd agree that there were no substantive ideological differences between Antony and Octavian, except that Antony had no political vision whereas Octavian apparently did. More generally, after Octavian, political rivalries seemed exclusively personal.

 

 

Octavian did however seem to present his personal rivalry as a political one against Egypt; this was due to the fact that a national war against a foreign enemy would look much better than a civil one.

 

The whole episode of Octavian stealing MA's will, and the way that Antony was seen as a product of a corrupt eastern land thereafter, clearly indicates that Octavian was indeed using political ideologies to justify his personal grudge.

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Brutus could have been a good man and a good Roman, but he chose to betray one of his closest friends, not to mentions relatives, in Caesar. A man without loyalty and honor is no man at all in my book.

 

Loyalty and honor to what? To ideals or to blood? If to ideals, then Brutus was certainly loyal. If to blood, Brutus was also loyal--he was a kinsman of Cato and the husband of the illustrious Porcia. Could you suck up to a dictator who had caused the death of your wife's beloved father, destroyed the lives of all your friends and family, and on top of all that marched against the capital of your nation? If you could, there are many names one might call you--but not loyal and not honorable. Brutus, on the other hand, may have had many faults--but not disloyalty and not dishonor.

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Brutus could have been a good man and a good Roman, but he chose to betray one of his closest friends, not to mentions relatives, in Caesar. A man without loyalty and honor is no man at all in my book.

Great post...Keep it up. The man was scum

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Will Clodius care to pepper his invective with evidence, or shall it be pure invective this evening?

 

I'm not sure what Clodius' logic is, but here are the reasons I would tend to agree with him...

 

Even before the civil war broke out, Caesar had practically godfathered Brutus and considered him a very close friend. However, Brutus still chose to take arms against Caesar's legions, although he did eventually apologize. Caesar accepted Brutus' apology and pardoned him in 48 BC, despite the traitor's death Brutus deserved after being a key member in Caesar's opposition the year before. Caesar's mercy and love for Brutus was further demonstrated when in 46 BC he appointed him governor of Gaul, and again appointed him praetor in 45 BC.

 

My problem with Brutus is not especially that he joined up with Pompey initially - many people were uncertain about Caesar's intentions before the war broke out. However, even after Caesar had given him endless mercy and even helped to restore his honor and status, Brutus was still seduced by the other conspirators, and by the illusion of his family history. Yes, his ancestor helped overthrow the last Roman king, but Caesar was no king - or at least he had little desire to be one, as far as we know. When it comes down to it, Brutus' weakness caused the death of one of Rome's greatest leaders, and then he ran rather than face the judgement of the people. He is a coward, and not a man.

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I don't care if Caesar had saved Brutus' life (as did Cassius saved Caesar's).

 

Brutus was under no obligation to Caesar; his obligation was to the law and the republic, which are higher duties than any mere personal tie. Do I need to remind you that the founder of the republic, Marcus Junius Brutus, had his own sons killed for conspiring against the consuls? And they did far less damage to the republic than Caesar. Or do you not recall that Romans were legally obligated to kill anyone aiming at regnum--and Caesar was not only called rex outside Italy, he'd even had his statues placed next to the old kings of Rome, had lived in the reggia for years, and was under the crazy notion that he was a god!

 

Rome was being ruled by an old crazed fool--what true Roman could let a few trinkets and tender mercies distract him from his duty? Surely no Brutus worthy of the name, Brutus.

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In my opinion and from my meagre readings, it was the Republic which destroyed itself with its avarice and contempt and not Caesar. Had it not been Caesar, then another would have taken the reins of government. Yet, I am not saying that the contempt and avarice of the nobles ended with the Republic.

 

When a government has decayed, it is the obligation of the patriot to amend it.

 

Brutus' ancestors give him no credit.

Edited by Gaius Octavius

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In my opinion and from my meagre readings, it was the Republic which destroyed itself with its avarice and contempt and not Caesar. Had it not been Caesar, then another would have taken the reins of government. Yet, I am not saying that the contempt and avarice of the nobles ended with the Republic.

 

When a government has decayed, it is the obligation of the patriot to amend it.

 

Brutus' ancestors give him no credit.

 

I think I agree with you...even though Cato is right in some respects. It is a Roman's obligation to kill those who conspire against the Republic, but the Republic as everyone knew it was collapsing around them. Caesar did everyone a favor by taking control. And even with his heightened sense of self, I believe that he would not have become king, but instead established himself in a position similar to Augustus's, essentially becoming the first emperor. Could be wrong though!

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Brutus, on the other hand, may have had many faults--but not disloyalty and not dishonor.

 

Sure, Brutus was a great chap! If you were around in those times, however, you knew not too borrow money off him, not to let him near a province (Just ask Cilicia and Cicero about Brutus) and to not give him anything more than enough rope to hang himself, lest he turn and stab you for your trouble.

 

What a load of codswallop. Brutus and the conspirators achieved NOTHING in killing Caesar. They plunged Rome into yet another civil war, when the political reform that was desperately required (rather than an oligarchy acting deliberately obstructive for the sake of being obstructive) was being installed. Before Caesar, the great Roman Republic was being dominated by the "Good Men" who, if Rome started crumbling around them, would simply call it part of the mos maiorum to stand still and be squashed flat by a falling pillar (to quote a great author). Caesar tried long and hard to gain a peaceful solution to or agreement with the Boni, but was forced to march on Rome not just to defend his dignitas, but to remove from power (yes power, for the Boni dressed up their own tyranny in "legality") the good men. Instead of remaining loyal to Rome the city and place, these "good men" soiled themselves and shot out of Rome like arrows from bows!

 

Once Caesar had stabilised the Roman world, he settled down to tend to the injured place that was Rome herself. What did he get for his toil? He was murdered by jealous scum who thought they would restore the republic merely by killing Caesar. They intended to inspire the people with their deeds, but instead, after killing Caesar, fled the scene as fast as their cowardly legs could carry them! How loyal to the republic were these people?

 

I cannot sit back and witness the cowardly, pathetic and jealousy motivated actions of Brutus and the conspirators dressed up in the light of liberation from tyranny.

Edited by Tobias

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Brutus' actions were justified only in the sense that he was upholding the laws and traditions of his patria. His personal failings were many - but then, so are ours; and even moreso, so were Caesar's. Caesar was a great man, undoubtedly - but he was not a good man.

 

There were many precedents in the Republic's history of generals laying down their arms after campaigns to face treason-trials. Even the Scipiones Africanus and Asiaticus came under prosecution by M. Porcius Cato Censor for purportedly accepting bribes while on campaign in Asia, a charge that nearly ruined their political lives. Who could have opposed them, were they to march upon Rome? The Scipiones were the greatest generals of their age, their army was fanatically loyal - they could have easily done as Caesar would. Yet they did not. Scipio Africanus returned to face his accusers and destroyed his records in front of their eyes. Boldness? Undoubtedly. Madness? Maybe a touch. But Scipio had faced down his accusers without resorting to the swords of his legionaries, and this was truly a greater triumph than even Caesar's Alesia. Scipio protected his dignitas, and didn't have to destroy the Republic to do it.

 

Perhaps Caesar could have learned something from Scipio's actions.

 

But back to Brutus - I shall echo another poster somewhere in the bowels of this thread, and paraphrase Cicero.

 

"The Conspirators had the spirits of men, but the foresight of children."

Edited by L. Quintus Sertorius

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L.Q.S., was the Republic in the same state of degeneration at the time of Scipio as it was at Caesars time?

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