So I didn’t realise this one was up, but here I am doing it now so let’s jump into it.
This week I chose to do a critical question:
“Explore the opening speech by Philo (lines 1-13), say what you think it means and discus why this speech is so important to the drama that unfolds hereafter”
The opening speech by Philo sets the tone for the entire play, I believe that within this opening speech Philo is telling the audience directly that Antony, a man once revered as one of the three men who helped Rome conquer many empires, has now become distracted with his love for Cleopatra and that all the attention he once had for his army is now put onto her. Philo is telling the audience to look and see, the fall of a man who once had it all.
I think this speech is so important in the drama because it shows that from the very start it would be Antony’s love for Cleopatra that will cause his downfall. It shows that maybe caring for someone, possibly to the point of obsession, can be a dangerous thing to do, essentially warning the viewer in a way, to not put all their eggs in one basket. If Antony were to keep his tactical army mind while still caring for Cleopatra is possible that Egypt would have defeated Rome in the later battles, but Antony let his emotions get the better of him and ultimately caused his demise.