Othello by William Shakespeare
The play "Othello" was written by the playwright William Shakespeare, one of the best and well-known writers of that period and upto the current day. He wrote it in 1604 to be performed to the new King: King James I and for that reason he included themes in it such as Turkish history, witchcraft and black magic which he knew King James I liked. The play is named after one of the main characters who has a fatal flaw. The character in question is Othello, the Moor of Venice, a believing and honourable member of the Venetian community and a general of the Venetian army. Although the play was named after Othello, Shakespeare brings in a true villan whose name is Iago. At
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The play begins with a conversation between Iago and a Venetian nobleman Roderigo. They are discussing about how Desdemona, whom Roderigo loves, has eloped with Othello. Through this early conversation it is evident that that Iago is manipulative and cunning as he is already taking advantage of the rich and love struck Roderigo, whose money he has full use of: "Thus do I ever make my fool, my purse.." The first word we hear from Iago is "Sblood", a strong swear word in the British language at the time. We learn through the conversation that Iago uses crude language and is not well spoken, or noble, but a simple man, a soldier. Iago explains to Roderigo why he hates the general, Othello. It seems that he had pleaded with Othello for the position of lieutenant in the army, but despite his efforts Othello promotes Cassio, a nobleman: "One Michael Cassio, a Florentine,....That never set a squadron in the field">From this statement we know that he despises Othello for this decision because not only is Cassio inexperienced, but he is also not from Venice but from Florence.
As Iago tells Roderigo of what he thinks as a mistake we become more aware of his bitterness. Iago here also gives a further reason why he hates Othello to the audience in the way of a soliloquy, a dramatic device whereby a character