Summary Of Iago In Shakespeare's Othello

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In 1603, William Shakespeare wrote a tragedy called Othello about a Spanish moor that ultimately fell victim to his own skepticism and emotions and murders his wife due to the machinations of Iago. Iago is the most interesting character in this Shakespearean play and actually has more speaking parts than even Othello himself. A man that can even convince his own wife to help with his masterfully manipulated puppetry of Othello, Desdemona, Rodrigo, Cassio, and Emilia is an exquisite character. This villain seems to have no real motive for his actions, but the enjoyment of the trouble he causes and the fact that Othello passed him over for his lieutenant. (Although, Iago seems to quite passionately want Othello’s affections whether as a friend …show more content…
“Thou told’st me thou didst hold him in thy hate” (Act 1, Scene 1, 818). Here Roderigo is trying to capitalize on the fact that Iago now hates Othello for giving Cassio the Lieutenant position over him. Iago states that, “I know my price, I am worth no worse of place” (Acts 1, Scene 1 818). It is odd that someone who had served Othello is so easily turned against him however, what is more odd is that Othello’s own skepticism starts here in the sense that in some way he was already skeptical of Iago and his ability. This explains why Cassio was given the position Othello felt he was best suited for. Roderigo is upset at “Iago who has had my purse as if the strings were thine” (Act 1, scene 1 818). His abrupt and angry speech shows his sense of entitlement and how he suffers from the “Idols of the Tribe” (Aph 41, Bacon 151). The Idols of the tribe is the “false assertion that the sense of man is the measure of things” (Aph. 41, Bacon 151). This shows that Roderigo is failing in any sense of human perception due to his obsession with Desdemona as everything else pales in comparison. At this point, Iago decided to let his true nature peak out in irony when he speaks, “But I will wear my heart upon my sleeve, for daws to peck at: I am not what I am” (Act 1, Scene 1, 818). The irony here is that Iago is both lying and telling the truth which makes it easier for Roderigo to believe him to get what he wants. He is not wearing his heart on his sleeve, but he is also not what he seems to be. By exploiting Roderigo for monetary funds he is using the soldier in such a way most would consider a basic highway robbery. Now while the soldier’s intellect leaves much to be desired his willingness to go along with whatever Iago speaks fits into his persona of a good soldier for the Venetian Army. “Call up her Father, rouse him; -- make after him

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