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Cinna (the Poet)

Character Analysis

This poor guy is the victim of mistaken identity when an angry mob confronts him on the streets of Rome:

CINNA THE POET
Truly, my name is Cinna.
FIRST PLEBIAN 
Tear him to pieces! He's a conspirator.
CINNA THE POET
I am Cinna the poet, I am Cinna the poet!
FOURTH PLEBIAN
Tear him for his bad verses, tear him for his bad verses!
CINNA THE POET
I am not Cinna the conspirator.
FOURTH PLEBIAN 
It is no matter. His name's Cinna.
Pluck but his name out of his heart, and turn him
going.
(3.3.28-36)

Yikes! Even after he declares his true identity to the angry mob, he's ripped to shreds for his "bad verses." Cinna's violent death seems emblematic of the disorder that ensues after Caesar's assassination. With Caesar dead, Rome falls into utter chaos and nobody is safe. Go to "Symbolism" if you want to know more about why poets don't get any love in Julius Caesar.

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