Act 1, Scene 8 – “Far too polite to save the day.”

artemidorus-page-0Notes on Artemidorus

So far, Zounds has focused on the most famous names in Shakespeare, but this week, I’ve decided to showcase a more obscure character – Artemidorus, two-scene wonder of Julius Caesar and all-round too-nice-for-his-own-good guy.

Artemidorus briefly pops up here, determined to save Caesar from the grisly fate history has in store for him, and then returns later and… doesn’t.

Presumably, Brutus’ allies bundle the poor guy off the stage before he can give the game away, but on paper, he comes across as far too polite to save the day. Were he a more forceful personality, he might be remembered as one of history’s greatest heroes, but alas, ’twas not to be. Still, I’ve always had a soft spot for Artie’s anticlimactic nature, and was delighted when he scored a cameo in the first season finale of HBO’s Rome.

The other two guys aren’t specific characters from the play, although I suppose one might be the even more obscure Popilius Lena. They probably just heard there was a stabbing going on, and felt like pitching in. I wouldn’t be surprised if they gave Cinna the poet a kicking as well when the political wind changed direction…


One thought on “Act 1, Scene 8 – “Far too polite to save the day.”

  1. I love to explore what the minor characters in Shakespeare’s plays do. I haven’t done much with my Hamlet pieces but you remind me of some great ideas for Hamlet pieces. The play has a great supporting cast.


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