Friends, Romans, Countrymen, lend me your ears
What's the origin of the phrase 'Friends, Romans, Countrymen, lend me your ears'?
This quotation from Julius Caesar is one of Shakespeare's best-known lines. Mark Antony asks for the attention of the assembled ctowd as he delivers a eulogy in honour of the recently murdered Julius Caesar:
Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears;
I come to bury Caesar, not to praise him.
The evil that men do lives after them;
The good is oft interred with their bones;
So let it be with Caesar. The noble Brutus
Hath told you Caesar was ambitious:
If it were so, it was a grievous fault,
And grievously hath Caesar answer’d it.
Here, under leave of Brutus and the rest =
For Brutus is an honourable man; S
o are they all, all honourable men.
Caesar had been assassinated by a group of conspirators led by Brutus. Brutus had previously delivered a speech in which he claimed that the murder had been done in the name of freedom. In a clever speech, Antony turned the mob against Brutus and the other assassins.