ESSAY Convincing Caesar

Submitted By Jacob-Pablo
Words: 658
Pages: 3

It is very hard to win an argument, but Aristotle divided the art of persuasion into three categories: ethos pathos and logos. Ethos is the source’s credibility, pathos is the emotional or motivation appeals and logos is the logic used to support the claim. These three elements are used when Calpurnia and Decius are trying to win an argument on whether Caesar should go to the senate or not, but in the end Decius wins and Caesar goes to the senate. Decius wins because he used pathos as the main point of his argument, while Calpurnia barely used it at all.

Both Calpurnia and Decius use ethos to help their arguments. Calpurnia is the wife of Caesar, and therefore Caesar greatly respects her. The reason she is able to originally convince Caesar is because she says they can blame her on Caesar not going to the senate that day, but Caesar decides to say that he isn’t feeling well. Just like Calpurnia, without using ethos Decius’s argument would mean nothing. Caesar tells Decius, his great friend, to tell the senate that he isn’t coming, but because he loves Decius, he tells him that the real reason is because Calpurnia had a dream where there was a statue of Caesar with blood pouring out onto smiling Romans. Caesar would have never told Decius the real reason if he wasn’t so close with him. Just in case that wasn’t enough to win the argument, Decius also tells Caesar that the senate is planning on giving him the crown, which Caesar only believes because it was Decius who was telling him. Although ethos played a major role in the persuasion techniques used by Calpurnia and Decius, pathos was also used.

Pathos isn’t a major role in the argument of Calpurnia, but it’s the key element in Decius’s argument. After Caesar explains Calpurnia’s dream to Decius, Decius quickly decides to flatter Caesar because he knew Caesar well and knew that he is vulnerable to flattery. He claims that the dream should actually be interpreted as the blood pouring out the statue is actually reviving the people of Rome, and that the smiling Romans are seeking the spirit of Caesar. Unlike Decius, Calpurnia doesn’t use pathos that much. The only evidence of Calpurnia using pathos is when she gets on her knees and begs to Caesar not to go the senate, hoping for him to pity her. Initially, it works but after the argument of Decius he realizes that Calpurnia is being foolish and everything