- Jun 2017
Go you down that way towards the Capitol; This way will I. Disrobe the images, If you do find them deck’d with ceremonies.
Although he is not tangibly introduced until the next scene, the audience is already presented with a fairly clear characterisation of Julius Caesar. However, Caesar's exact nature is determined through two juxtaposing attitudes towards the Empire.
The Roman common-folk praise the defeat of Pompey, in fact making a "holiday to see Caesar and to rejoice in his triumph." On the contrary, the noble classes express a more pessimistic attitude; Flavius cautions that the new leader will "soar above the view of men, and keep us all in servile fearfulness."
The tribunes believe that Caesar's power is too great for one man, and that his rise as Emperor will lead to the downfall of Rome. It is also a valid argument to say that they envy Caesar's might, especially since Flavius and Murellus are to lose an element of their own authority.
After commanding the people to weep for the coming events, Flavius and Murellus leave to "disrobe the images" of Caesar. This metaphor refers to removing the decorations off Caesar's statues, a crime which they are later punished for. The desperation of such an act is an indication of how strongly Caesar is feared and detested by the noblemen.
This scene leaves the audience with a preconceived image of Caesar as ambitious, influential and excessively powerful. The loathing of Flavius and Murellus towards the new Emperor foreshadow the upcoming conspiracy and the ultimate demise of Caesar.