In the book, “Walden” by Henry David Thoreau, there a section devoted to the battle of ants. Thoreau’s subsequent narrative of the battle is very detailed and peppered with historical allusions. These allusions make the reader become “fired up” over the subject of war and patriotism. About seventy-five percent of this essay was about patriotism, heroism, and courage. After reading the essay, one gets the impression that Thoreau is making a mockery of humans in general. and heroes to the lowly, dung eating ants.
At numerous times does he mention man-kinds greatest wars and heroes and than mentions the fierceness of the ants. One can conclude that Thoreau does not think too highly of humans on a whole. The first allusions of human battles and people is to the Trojan War. Thoreau makes many references to this great struggle which has popped up many a philosophical debates. “The legions of these Myrmidons covered all the hills and vales in my wood yard, and the ground was already strewn with the dead and dying, both red and black.
This is the first reference to the Trojans and their war. The Myrmidons were the people of ancient Thessaly who followed their king, Achilles, to the Trojan War. “Or perchance he was some Achilles, who had nourished his wrath apart, and had now come to avenge or rescue his Patroclus. ” This statement was in reference to a little red ant, who either dispatched his last foe without a scratch or had come green from the home-front. Either way, the little red ant was described as being full of excitement and ready to fight.
There are many other references to battles in this essay. And certainly there is not the fight recorded in Concord history, at least, if in the history of America, that will bear a moment’s comparison with this, whether for the numbers engaged in it, or for the patriotism and heroism displayed” These words are famous At first Thoreau describes the battle between the ants as a whole, than he gets more and more specific until he takes a wood chip and takes it into his house to observe it more. During this observations he records the feeble struggles of the red ants who are finally overwhelmed by the much larger black ant.
Even though the large ant won the battle, he suffered terrible losses. It is not known whether or not the ant survived the battle, but is left up to the readers imagination. This section of the story describes human wars and battles that have taken place. All wars were bloody and none without tremendous losses on both sides. There is only one war that is an oddity among wars and that war is the Cold War. This is not the Cold War however, these ants did not posture and provoke the other, but went out and did something about it.
The reason Thoreau leaves out who won the battle is because sometimes, a war is so harsh that there is no clear winner. iewers insight into the characters of their mates. Each wife shows different aspects of their companion. Portia, wife of Brutus reveals a ghostly side. Portia’s character reveals an un-pleasant relationship with Brutus. They have nothing in common, except for their extremist anti-Caesar political views. This lack of compatibility leaves them with nothing to discuss.
Despite Portia’s ancestry, (she was the daughter of an anti-Caesar extremist) she thinks of herself as being less than Brutus is. She kneels in front of him and speaks to him in third person. She pleads with Brutus to reveal the identity of the masked men who appeared at her door in the middle of the night. She even stabbed herself in the thigh. Yet, Brutus refuses to divulge any information, and says nothing to her other than to go to bed. From her dialogue with Brutus Portia reveals, that Brutus is indeed, a pompous self-centered man and that they have an un-pleasant relationship.
Calpurnia plays a similar role in the story. She reveals an un-clear part of Caesar. Calpurnia shows Caesars’ vague suppositious trait. Until the conversation with calpurnia, Caesar never directly admitted to being suppositious. He always added something in front of his superstitions. However, when calpurnia had the bad dream, she convinced him not to go to the senate. Her conversation also throws light on his character. He was the most powerful man in the world and he had time to discuss things with his wife.
The fact that he went to discuss the dream with calpurnia and came to a mutual agreement, and did not shrugged it of like Brutus would have shows a caring and compassionate side of his character and of his relationship with calpurnia. In conclusion, wives in theatre and literature offer insights into their men. In the theatrical work of Julius Caesar by William Shakespeare, the wives of key characters play a small but extraordinarily significant role. Female characters such as Portia the wife of Brutus, and Calpurnia wife of Julius Caesar, offer readers or viewers insight into the characters of their mates.