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The Snare of Vanity

In Act 2, Scene 1 of Julius Caesar, Decius Brutus uses “betrayed” to mean fooled, tricked or misled. A person can escape a unicorn by hiding behind a tree; a bear can be misled by seeing itself in a mirror; an elephant can be tricked into falling into a hole; a lion caught in a trap; and men seduced by flatterers. In referring to Caesar's “humor” and “true bent”, Decius Brutus is speaking of Caesar's temperament, which is determined by the balance of the four humors. In Caesar's case, his disposition is vain, egotistical and proud. In giving his humor its true bent, Decius Brutus will play to those characteristics.

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Never fear that

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