Et tu, Brute


      • Betrayal
        Expressing shock and disappointment at being betrayed or stabbed in the back by someone close or trusted

      • Hurt or wounded feelings
        Conveying deep emotional pain and sorrow caused by a close friend or loved one's betrayal

      • Unexpected turn of events
        Describing a surprising and unexpected betrayal or act of treachery by someone who was thought to be loyal or trustworthy

    Examples of Et tu, Brute

    • In a political scandal, the trusted colleague and close friend of the leading politician betrays him, revealing sensitive information to the opposition. This betrayal is often called "Et tu, Brute" because it is unexpected and goes against the bonds of loyalty and trust that should exist between the two.

      The phrase "Et tu, Brute" is a historical reference from the play "Julius Caesar" by William Shakespeare. It comes from the moment when Caesar realizes that his friend Brutus has also joined the conspiracy against him, with the famous line "Et tu, Brute? - Then fall, Caesar!". In modern usage, it refers to a situation where someone close and trusted turns against another person in a dramatic and shocking way, much like the betrayal of Brutus against Caesar.

    • The protagonist in a thriller movie discovers that the kind and gentle stranger he has been helping is actually a serial killer, who has been using him as a pawn in his twisted games. When the truth is finally revealed, the victim exclaims "Et tu, Brute?" in disbelief and horror, as the stranger coldly reveals his true nature.

      In this example, the use of "Et tu, Brute" highlights the shock and disillusionment felt by the protagonist at the betrayal of someone he trusted, much like the manner in which Caesar felt betrayed by Brutus. The phrase evokes a strong emotional response, particularly as it is so unexpected and dramatic, adding to the tension and suspense in the scene.

    • After years of friendship, a long-time business partner reveals that he has been stealing money from the company, ruining its financial stability and jeopardizing the livelihoods of its employees. In an outburst of anger and disgust, the wronged partner exclaims "Et tu, Brute?" in disbelief and betrayal, as he realizes the full extent of the betrayal.

      Here, the use of "Et tu, Brute" underscores the depth of the betrayal, emphasizing the deception and trust violated by the partner's actions. The phrase serves to heighten the emotional impact of the scene, as it captures the sense of shock and disbelief felt by the wronged partner, much like the response of Caesar to the betrayal of Brutus.

    • Following the disclosure of some incriminating evidence, a respected and prominent figure in the community faces accusations of wrongdoing and is forced to resign from his position. In the aftermath, his former colleagues express their shock and disbelief at the betrayal, with some of them exclaiming "Et tu, Brute?" as a sign of the severity of the situation and the depth of the betrayal.

      In this instance, the use of "Et tu, Brute" serves to emphasize the gravity of the situation, highlighting the profound nature of the trust violated by the accused's actions. The phrase captures the sense of treachery and deception involved in the betrayal, as well as the devastating impact it has on the community as a whole, much like the way in which Caesar was betrayed by Brutus.

    • In a business deal, a trusted partner suddenly turns against you, betraying your expectations and loyalty. You might feel betrayed and say, "Et tu, partner? After all the years we worked together, you've decided to go against me?"

      The phrase "Et tu, Brute?" translates to "Even you, Brutus?" in English. It's used in the context of betrayal to express shock and disbelief at finding out that someone close to you has turned against you. The phrase stems from Julius Caesar's famous last words, where Caesar asked Brutus, his friend and ally, why he too was participating in his assassination. In the given example, the phrase is used to convey the speaker's surprise and disappointment at finding out that their trusted business partner has double-crossed them.


    The idiom "Et tu, Brute?" is primarily used to express feelings of betrayal and hurt caused by someone close or trusted. It can also convey shock and surprise at an unexpected turn of events. The phrase is often used in a dramatic or theatrical manner to emphasize the depth of emotional pain and disappointment experienced.

    Origin of "Et tu, Brute"

    The origins of this idiom can be traced back to William Shakespeare's play "Julius Caesar." In Act III, Scene 1, Julius Caesar is assassinated by a group of senators, including his close friend Marcus Brutus. As Caesar lay dying, he utters the now famous phrase "Et tu, Brute?" which translates to "Even you, Brutus?"

    This scene and phrase have become ingrained in popular culture and are often referenced in various forms of media. The idiom is used to convey the ultimate betrayal by someone who was thought to be a friend or ally. It is believed that Shakespeare was inspired by historical accounts of Julius Caesar's assassination, where Marcus Brutus was indeed one of the conspirators.

    Overall, the idiom "Et tu, Brute?" holds a powerful and emotional connotation due to its origins in Shakespeare's play and its association with betrayal and backstabbing. It has become a popular phrase to use in situations where one feels deeply hurt and betrayed by someone close.