Antony and Cleopatra essay

Antony and Cleopatra essay

  • Submitted By: h0laerin
  • Date Submitted: 04/30/2013 12:17 PM
  • Category: Book Reports
  • Words: 3513
  • Page: 15
  • Views: 112

A major theme in in ‘Antony and Cleopatra’ is the conflicting cultural principles of Rome with its stress on the importance of duty, self-control and politics, and in Egypt with its emphasis on luxury and pleasure. I think that her volatility and unpredictability can be irrefutably related to her Regal and tragic Queen Stature as her ‘fatal flaw’.

Cleopatra is a volatile character, although she is ultimately portrayed as a regal and tragic queen. Worthy of the audience's pity, or is she a figure of scorn, an empty, debasing volatile character? However, there are many factors that would affect the opinions on these questions such as gender, societal status and moral outlook, though these would all be affected by the period in which they live.

‘tragic hero


A great or virtuous character in a dramatic tragedy that is destined for downfall, suffering, or defeat: Oedipus, the classic tragic hero.’

An argument in favour of Cleopatra’s presentation as a regal and tragic queen, as opposed to a volatile and unpredictable one is that she can be seen as a female equal to the tragic hero defined by Aristotle’s ‘poetics’. In this, Aristotle described a tragic hero as a person of high status who personifies qualities, which hold him above the status of mere men. Aside from Cleopatra’s indubitable noble status as Queen of Egypt, Shakespeare brings to attention Cleopatra’s notable qualities by the way that Antony speaks to her. Their tone being that of simple lovers, however Antony's reply to Cleopatra leads us to see something else, a grand passion on Antony’s behalf. He suggests that together, they ‘stand up peerless’ insinuating that infact no others can stand up as equals for the love and passion they hold for one, another point being made on Cleopatra being a tragic heroin is her death, Cleopatra dies, in my opinion I noble death, a death by her own hands, she refuses to be Caesars pawn, to be paraded around the streets of Rome like a wild animal, by...

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