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Influencing The Crowd. Part 2

This can be accomplished by unifying the minds and needs of the audience and arousing their emotions. Their feelings, not their reason, must be played upon - it is "up to" him to do this nobly. Argument has its place on the platform, but even its potencies must subserve the speaker's plan of attack to win possession of his audience.

Reread the chapter on "Feeling and Enthusiasm." It is impossible to make an audience a crowd without appealing to their emotions. Can you imagine the average group becoming a crowd while hearing a lecture on Dry Fly Fishing, or on Egyptian Art? On the other hand, it would not have required world-famous eloquence to have turned any audience in Ulster, in 1914, into a crowd by discussing the Home Rule Act. The crowd-spirit depends largely on the subject used to fuse their individualities into one glowing whole.

Note how Antony played upon the feelings of his hearers in the famous funeral oration given by Shakespeare in "Julius Caesar." From murmuring units the men became a unit - a mob.

Antony's Oration Over Caesar's Body

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 answered it.

Here, under leave of Brutus, and the rest -

For Brutus is an honorable man,

So are they all, all honorable men -

Come I to speak in Caesar's funeral.

He was my friend, faithful and just to me:

But Brutus says he was ambitious;

And Brutus is an honorable man.

He hath brought many captives home to Rome,

Whose ransoms did the general coffers fill:

Did this in Caesar seem ambitious?

When that the poor have cried, Caesar hath wept;

Ambition should be made of sterner stuff:

Yet Brutus says, he was ambitious;

And Brutus is an honorable man.

You all did see, that, on the Lupercal,

I thrice presented him a kingly crown,

Which he did thrice refuse. Was this ambition?

Yet Brutus says he was ambitious;

And sure, he is an honorable man.

I speak not to disprove what Brutus spoke,

But here I am to speak what I do know.

You all did love him once, not without cause;

What cause withholds you then to mourn for him?

Oh, judgment, thou art fled to brutish beasts,

And men have lost their reason! - Bear with me;

My heart is in the coffin there with Caesar,

And I must pause till it come back to me. [Weeps.

1 Plebeian. Methinks there is much reason in his sayings.

2 Ple. If thou consider rightly of the matter, Caesar has had great wrong.

3 Ple. Has he, masters? I fear there will a worse come in his place.

4 Ple. Mark'd ye his words? He would not take the crown; Therefore, 'tis certain, he was not ambitious.

1 Ple. If it be found so, some will dear abide it.

2 Ple. Poor soul, his eyes are red as fire with weeping.

3 Ple. There's not a nobler man in Rome than Antony.

4 Ple. Now mark him, he begins again to speak. Ant. But yesterday, the word of Caesar might

Have stood against the world: now lies he there, And none so poor to do him reverence.

Oh, masters! if I were dispos'd to stir

Your hearts and minds to mutiny and rage,

I should do Brutus wrong, and Cassius wrong.

Who, you all know, are honorable men.

I will not do them wrong; I rather choose

To wrong the dead, to wrong myself, and you,

Than I will wrong such honorable men.

But here's a parchment, with the seal of Caesar;

I found it in his closet; 'tis his will:

Let but the commons hear this testament -

Which, pardon me, I do not mean to read -

And they would go and kiss dead Caesar's wounds,

And dip their napkins in his sacred blood;

Yea, beg a hair of him for memory,

And, dying, mention it within their wills,

Bequeathing it as a rich legacy

Unto their issue.

4 Ple. We'll hear the will: Read it, Mark Antony.

All. The will! the will! we will hear Caesar's will.

Ant. Have patience, gentle friends: I must not read it; It is not meet you know how Caesar lov'd you. You are not wood, you are not stones, but men; And, being men, hearing the will of Caesar, It will inflame you, it will make you mad: 'Tis good you know not that you are his heirs; For if you should, oh, what would come of it!

4 Ple. Read the will; we'll hear it, Antony! You shall read us the will! Caesar's will!

Ant. Will you be patient? Will you stay awhile? I have o'ershot myself, to tell you of it. I fear I wrong the honorable men Whose daggers have stab'd Caesar; I do fear it.

4 Ple. They were traitors: Honorable men!

All. The will! the testament!

2 Ple. They were villains, murtherers! The will! Read the will!

Ant. You will compel me then to read the will? Then, make a ring about the corpse of Caesar, And let me shew you him that made the will. Shall I descend? And will you give me leave?

All. Come down.

2 Ple. Descend. [He comes down from the Rostrum,

3 Ple. You shall have leave.

4 Ple. A ring; stand round.

1 Ple. Stand from the hearse, stand from the body.

2 Ple. Room for Antony! - most noble Antony! Ant. Nay, press not so upon me; stand far off. All. Stand back! room! bear back!

Ant. If you have tears, prepare to shed them now; You all do know this mantle: I remember The first time ever Caesar put it on; 'Twas on a summer's evening, in his tent, That day he overcame the Nervii. Look, in this place, ran Cassius' dagger through: See, what a rent the envious Casca made: Through this, the well-beloved Brutus stab'd; And as he pluck'd his cursed steel away, Mark how the blood of Caesar follow'd it! - As rushing out of doors, to be resolv'd If Brutus so unkindly knock'd, or no; For Brutus, as you know, was Caesar's angel: Judge, O you Gods, how Caesar lov'd him! This was the most unkindest cut of all! For when the noble Caesar saw him stab, Ingratitude, more strong than traitors' arms, Quite vanquish'd him: then burst his mighty heart; And in his mantle muffling up his face, •


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