Free Essay on Cicero and Mark Antony - Who Is the Better Leader?

Published: 2022-08-30
Free Essay on Cicero and Mark Antony - Who Is the Better Leader?
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Mark Antony Leadership style Julius Caesar
Pages: 4
Wordcount: 947 words
8 min read

Caesar's death was a problem for the Roman empire because he was the acting ruler of the Empire. His departure left a power vacuum that sparked a political rivalry between various leaders. One of those competitions is present in Cicero's Philippic II which for the most part explores the theme of leadership. Cicero and Antony have contrasting leadership traits, but evidence from the chapter suggests that Cicero has better leadership qualities than Antony. Cicero would be a better-qualified leader than Antony because of his social status, his financial status and his reputation which were higher than those of Antony.

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Cicero's was a more desirable leader than Antony because he had better social status. Evidence from the chapter suggests that Antony spent some time among the lowest class of the Roman society. In paragraph 44 of Philippic II, Cicero says to Antony, "First you were a common prostitute; you had a fixed rate for your shameful services, and not a low one either," (244). Prostitutes in Roman society were among the lowest class. Prostitutes along with slaves and other entertainers were exempted from the standard protection provided for other citizens. For that reason, most people in the society used the members of that group for sexual satisfaction and different roles that the rest of the community rejected. Such details about a person's past are bad for an average person, leave alone a Statesman. The fact that Antony served as a prostitute means that he has a low social class. Cicero, on the other hand, was always among the top social level because of his origins from a respectable family. He has been in the circles of political leaders almost all his life, and he understands the inner workings of the Roman government. One cannot say the same about Antony. An empire such as Rome requires a person of high social status. A person who can command respect from the nobles. Based on the revelations from Cicero, Antony is unable to control the respect of the nobles in the Roman society.

Cicero's financial status reveals that he was a better leader to rule Rome than Antony. There is evidence to suggest that Antony underwent bankruptcy. Paragraph 44 reveals Antony's history of poverty. The reader gets a sense that Antony's journey has a rug to riches story. He, unlike other consuls, was once in the bottom class of the Roman society. Antony happened to have gone bankrupt. An occurrence to which he blames his father. The bankruptcy made Antony a bottom feeder. He also had to pretend and break some laws to remain relevant in the Roman society and avoid bringing disgrace to himself. In paragraph 44, Cicero says," He saved you from having to support yourself as a prostitute" (244). The section indicates that Antony had undergone financial problems. But that is not the only thing that Cicero reveals about Antony's economic status. In paragraph 48, Cicero reveals that Antony had no home to call his own although everyone else had a home even after had started serving in Caesar's government (244). These events show that Antony is not financially stable as many people would believe. Cicero would make a better leader because he never became bankrupt. Antony has proven that he cannot manage the Roman Empire's financial matters because he failed to maintain his business affairs and those of his family.

Cicero had a better reputation than Antony which made him more qualified to rule Rome. Antony has a dirty past that diminishes his stature. There is the issue of Antony's role in his love affair with Curio. Roman boys were given certain clothes known as toga to wear upon reaching the age of 15 to signify manhood. In the case of Antony, he turned to prostitution when he became a man. The criticism from Cicero isn't directed at Antony's act of homosexuality but rather towards the role he played in the whole affair. The Roman culture allowed homosexuality. Males could practice homosexuality without losing their masculinity. However, they retained their dignity provided they don't take a submissive role in the affair. Submissiveness was regarded as a feminine behavior and thus only reserved for women. When Cicero says, "fitted you out in the dress of a married lady," he is referring to Antony taking on the female role in the relationship (244). In homosexual relationships, the submissive role was for male slaves and prostitutes who occupied the lowest level of the Roman society. By taking on such part, Antony had assumed the role of a woman and had, therefore, made the toga a woman's clothing. That scandal between Antony and Curio permanently damaged Antony's reputation. He appeared as a joke before the masses. Cicero, on the other hand, was a reputable person who has been involved with a lot of policies in the Senate and has the support of the majority of the people.


Caesar was such as strong figure for the Roman empire. His death left a power vacuum that allowed unfit people such as Antony to ascend to the throne. The policies adopted by Antony agitated another famous politician known as Cicero who was a Senator of the Roman Empire. The Philippic II by Cicero shows that Cicero was a better than Antony regarding financial status as evidenced by Antony's history with bankruptcy. Cicero was also better than Antony in regards to his social status as revealed by The Philippic II which indicate that Antony was once a prostitute who occupied the lowest social status in the Roman society. Cicero also outdid Antony with reputation because of Antony's love affair with Curio which saw him take a role of a woman. Based on the above evidence, Cicero was a better leader than Antony.

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