In Antigone the nobleman, Creon, claimed the thrown after his nephews, heirs to Thebes killed each other in battle. Assuming that the populous was going to find him inadequate he laid a strict rule in order to keep the people under his control. Creon wanted Thebes to prosper and grow and was willing to do anything to achieve this. Through a chain of events Creon killed his entire family. Brutus, a senator in William Shakespeare’s play Julius Caesar, claims the life of Julius Caesar in order to preserve Rome, his country and home.
He puts aside his love for his comrade; Caesar to do what he felt was best. Both of these characters, Creon and Brutus, clearly felt compelled to do what each felt was preeminent for their country. Creon and Brutus both shared high position in the governments of their countries, maintaining power and some level of control. Both of the two, when faced with the threat of losing control turned to unjustified courses of action. Creon threatened death to anyone who defied his rule, fearing that mass hysteria would follow.
Brutus on the other had, while less extreme, found that when an overly ambitious ruler threatened Rome the only possible answer was murder. They resorted to the actions with true zeal and completely believed in their cause. Sincerity makes each character share the same beliefs in what they were doing. The country’s well-being was the only thing on the leaders’ mind. The drive for excellence, in all areas of life, such as honesty was prevalent in both Brutus and Creon. Based upon the fact that each was open with the citizens in their cities and the way they dictated their decisions.
When Brutus comes to the people with the body of Caesar he never claims innocence, but asks the plebeians if he has offended anyone. The law that Creon provides for his people is straightforward; do not disturb the body of Polyneices. The citizens of each play were torn between accepting the truth of what each man offers to the country and justice for murder. Creon on one hand was respected by some of his populous “Once Creon was a man worthy of envy–/of my envy, at least. For he saved this city/of Thebes from her enemies, and attained/the throne of the land, with all a king’s power.
/He guided it right. His race bloomed/with good children. But when a man forfeits joy/I do not count his life as life, but only/a life trapped within a corpse” (lines 1233 -1240). Brutus swayed half of his community as well. When he allows Antony to speak at Caesars funeral, only few remained loyal. The tragic flaw of both characters was taking the wrong roads to get to the right place.
Each have justifiable causes, but do the ends justify their means? Creon and Brutus were only trying to save what they stood for, their country. Was justice served to each? Brutus, met death by his own sword and Creon is left to remorse the loss of loved ones. Because they each want the best for their nation, they are consumed by their means to uphold their cause.