The Revenger’s Tragedy

Junior Brother Character Analysis

Junior Brother is the youngest son of the Duchess, predating her relationship with the Duke. He is imprisoned for the rape of Antonio’s wife, but remains unrepentant; in fact, he feels no remorse at all, explaining his reason for committing the crime as “flesh and blood, my lord. What should move man unto a woman else?” Junior Brother spends most of the play hoping to be released from prison, but is killed when Supervacuo and Ambitioso bring the prison guards an order for execution. This is an error on Supervacuo and Ambitioso’s part, as they had intended the order to be for Lussurioso.

Junior Brother Quotes in The Revenger’s Tragedy

The The Revenger’s Tragedy quotes below are all either spoken by Junior Brother or refer to Junior Brother. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Revenge and Justice Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Bloomsbury edition of The Revenger’s Tragedy published in 2009.
Act 1, Scene 2  Quotes

Duchess, it is your youngest son, we’re sorry,
His violent act has e'en drawn blood of honour
And stained our honours,
Thrown ink upon the forehead of our state
Which envious spirits will dip their pens into
After our death, and blot us in our tombs."

Related Characters: The Duke (speaker), The Duchess, Spurio , Junior Brother, Antonio
Page Number: 1-6
Explanation and Analysis:
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SECOND JUDGE: Confess, my lord,
What moved you to’t?

JUNIOR BROTHER: Why, flesh and blood, my lord.
What should move men unto a woman else?

LUSSURIOSO: O do not jest thy doom; trust not an axe
Or sword too far. The law is a wise serpent
And quickly can beguile thee of thy life.

Related Characters: Lussurioso (speaker), Junior Brother (speaker), Antonio
Page Number: 46-50
Explanation and Analysis:
Quotes explanation short mobile

DUCHESS: Who would not be revenged of such a father,
E'en in the worst way? I would thank that sin
That could most injury him, and be in league with it.
Oh what a grief 'tis that a man should live
But once i'th’ world, and then to live a bastard,
The curse o' the womb, the thief of Nature,
Begot against the seventh commandment
Half damned in the conception by the justice
Of that unbribed everlasting law.

SPURIO: O, I’d a hot-backed devil to my father.

Related Characters: The Duchess (speaker), Spurio (speaker), The Duke, Junior Brother
Page Number: 154-163
Explanation and Analysis:
Quotes explanation short mobile
Act 1, Scene 4 Quotes

I marked not this before:
A prayer book the pillow to her cheek;
This was her rich confection, and another
Placed in her right hand with a leaf tucked up,
Pointing to these words:
Melius virtute mori, quam per dedecus viyere.
True and effectual it is indeed.

Related Characters: Antonio (speaker), Junior Brother
Page Number: 13-18
Explanation and Analysis:
Quotes explanation short mobile
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Junior Brother Character Timeline in The Revenger’s Tragedy

The timeline below shows where the character Junior Brother appears in The Revenger’s Tragedy. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Act 1, Scene 1
Revenge and Justice Theme Icon
Lust Theme Icon
...from the court. Hippolito informs her that the Duchess’s youngest son (and the Duke’s stepson), Junior Brother , is rumored to have raped the wife of Lord Antonio, a court nobleman. Vindice... (full context)
Act 1, Scene 2 
Revenge and Justice Theme Icon
Lust Theme Icon
...Duke, Lussurioso, the Duchess, Spurio, and Ambitioso and Supervacuo, the Duchess’s other two sons, enter. Junior Brother is brought in to stand trial for the rape of Antonio’s wife. Two judges are... (full context)
Revenge and Justice Theme Icon
Lust Theme Icon
The Duke apologizes to the Duchess for the fact that Junior Brother , her youngest son, must be punished for his crime. He says it’s important to... (full context)
Revenge and Justice Theme Icon
Lust Theme Icon
Death Theme Icon
The Duchess pleads on her knees for Junior Brother to be shown mercy. Lussurioso says that mercy is superficial and false, but Ambitioso also... (full context)
Revenge and Justice Theme Icon
Lust Theme Icon
Women and Misogyny Theme Icon
The judges quiz Junior Brother on why he committed the rape, to which he replies: “Why, flesh and blood, my... (full context)
Revenge and Justice Theme Icon
Women and Misogyny Theme Icon
Much to the Duchess’s dismay, the judge starts to pronounce the death sentence for Junior Brother. But before he can finish his statement, the Duke intervenes, instructing that the verdict will... (full context)
Revenge and Justice Theme Icon
Lust Theme Icon
Women and Misogyny Theme Icon
The Duchess is furious with the Duke for not freeing Junior Brother. She vows to get her own back on him by “cuckolding” him—that is, having an... (full context)
Act 1, Scene 4
Lust Theme Icon
Women and Misogyny Theme Icon
...Hippolito. Antonio’s wife has committed suicide by poison after her rape at the hands of Junior Brother. Antonio, distraught, reasons that she must have killed herself because of shame—he found her with... (full context)
Lust Theme Icon
Women and Misogyny Theme Icon
...Antonio accepts gratefully. Antonio explains the circumstances of the rape. It was during recent “revels”; Junior Brother pushed Antonio’s wife into “a throng of panders” and “fed the ravenous vulture of his... (full context)
Act 3, Scene 1
Revenge and Justice Theme Icon
...so, increase their own power in the court. They also plan to “trick and wile” Junior Brother out of his imprisonment. (full context)
Act 3, Scene 4
Revenge and Justice Theme Icon
Junior Brother sits in prison, frustrated at his situation.  He asks the prison keeper whether there is... (full context)
Revenge and Justice Theme Icon
Death Theme Icon
The keeper briefly exits before returning with “bad news,” saying he has been “discharged” of Junior Brother. The prisoner thinks this means he’s about to be released, but prison officers enter and... (full context)
Revenge and Justice Theme Icon
Lust Theme Icon
Women and Misogyny Theme Icon
Death Theme Icon
The officers tell Junior Brother that his own brothers delivered the Duke’s judgment to them, confusing Junior Brother, who says... (full context)
Act 3, Scene 6
Revenge and Justice Theme Icon
Death Theme Icon
...Supervacuo enter, bragging of the way they orchestrated Lussurioso’s execution. They plot to bring about Junior Brother ’s release, with Ambitioso saying he has a “trick” to help. At this moment, an... (full context)
Revenge and Justice Theme Icon
Death Theme Icon
...been specific about which brother to kill, and that the officer had assumed they meant Junior Brother. They look at the head in horror, before vowing revenge on “all.” (full context)