In William Shakespeare’s play, The Tragedy of Julius Caesar, the character Portia, second wife to Brutus, seemed to be one of the most burdened with secrets. There were only two women in the play, and Portia was the one who proved strength over most of the male characters, both physically and mentally. Portia was born between 73 BC and 64 BC and loved philosophy and had an obvious understanding of courage (Wikipedia.org). Portia was the only wife in the play who knew about the plot to kill Caesar. Brutus divorced his first wife, Claudia Pulchra, to marry Portia. Brutus’s mother, Servilia, was jealous of Brutus’s love for Portia (Wikipedia.org). Every character in this play intertwines as a soap opera would. Most marriages were for political reasons and arranged, but Portia and Brutus married for love. Portia represents a woman who sees herself as strong as a man and tries to prove her strength throughout the play, (Wikipedia.org). When Brutus refuses to tell her secrets saying she would not be strong enough to handle such things, Portia stabs herself in the leg.
This is her effort to not only prove her pain can be hidden, but she can also keep a secret. This symbolizes her strength and loyalty. Men are usually seen as the violent characters in the play. Portia shows more self-inflicting pain than any other character. She’s torn before Caesar’s murder, because she knew about the murder plot. She may have been the powerful one who could have prevented Caesar’s assassination, if she had told someone or warned Caesar. Her loyalty to Brutus may have also been the death of her. Although she’s dead by Chapter IV, Portia still plays a huge part in this chapter, as far as showing Brutus’s character. Portia only appears in the entire play a few times,
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