Her speeches are not as lengthy as those of the men, but with Desdemona, every word counts. 7 LOUIS BUTELLI: The word Moor is almost used in place of a name for Othello throughout the whole first half of the play. Iago portrays desire in low terms, with reductive language: Desdemona's adoration is 'violence', Othello's wooing tales are 'bragging ... lies'. Iago's envious depiction of Cassio as 'handsome' and 'young', while assigning him his own character traits – 'a knave', 'the mere form of ... seeming' (2.1.227), 'a finder out of occasions' (2.1.229–30) – implies he has a jealous nature. Find Iago’s use of “taboo words.” 8. First, he's a lightweight when it comes to drinking. When Emilia’s discovers that her loyalty and obedience to her husband has gotten her in a horrible situation, she acknowledges that, “’T’is proper I obey him, but not now.” (5.2.233). Explain the contrast in the way Iago speaks to Brabantio and the way Roderigo speaks to him. From this time forth I never will speak word." Iago, the Machiavellian villain of Shakespeare's Othello exhibits character traits of amorality, duplicity, cynicism, pride, and of course, ego. This is the weakness that Iago exploits when Iago gets Cassio drunk and sends him off to fight Roderigo. How were the Jews regarded in 16th-century England? In Act 2, Scene 1 of Othello, Iago formulates his plan to drive Othello mad. In Othello, the Moor was easily able to call his friend, Iago, “honest Iago.” Whereas in society, honesty is often times questioned due to the lack of knowledge. 1812 Words | 8 Pages. Perhaps the most interesting and exotic character in the tragic play "Othello," by William Shakespeare, is "Honest" Iago. Later, it will ensnare Othello: 'give thy worst of thoughts / the worst of words' (3.3.133–34). Iago's base reduction figures sex as hunger: 'her eye must be fed' (2.1.215). Iago’s true intentions are never revealed to other characters – it is only through sneaking asides and hate-filled soliloquies that we are given access to his plots. It also provides a closing irony to the passage – nothing will be 'well' on Cyprus any more. 2007). Cassio functions mainly to move the plot forward by inadvertently becoming a pawn in Iago’s plan. All are instructions to be quiet and listen, which Roderigo submissively obeys. In fact, Iago's misogyny pales in comparison to some found in contemporary dramas, such as Ben Jonson’s Volpone, also set in Venice, and John Ford’s 'Tis Pity She's a Whore. The key theme in the passage is sexual appetite. Find all the examples in I, 1, of Iago referring to the sex in terms of animals. Iago tells Brabantio that Othello steals Desdemona from him by force. The image of discordant music is a fitting one for his actions, as Iago’s success lies in his ability to distort and pervert what should be other characters’ most positive traits: Othello’s passionate honour, Desdemona’s commitment, Cassio’s courtesy. According to the algorithm that drives this website, the top 5 adjectives for "iago" are: honest, honest, however repulsive, sensual and catlike, small and negative, and crafty cunning. A storm has dispersed the Venetian fleet so that Cassio arrives first, anxious for Othello's safety. Emilia blames the man in the relationship for driving her to it. Iago's speech is in prose, like many of his asides. Shakespeare uses prose for many reasons: for comic or intimate exchanges, for lowly characters, for convention-defying princes such as Hamlet. Iago’s co-conspirator, Roderigo, has less access to his diabolical plans than we do, despite Iago posing as his benefactor with astonishingly little effort: 'Pish! — Iago (1.1.66) Dilatory: Causing to delay or procrastinate. An illustration of Act Two, Scene 1 of Othello. Act 1: Scene 2 1. Through Iago's language, Roderigo is duped into mis-seeing – a trick Othello will later fall for. Iago is showing more signs of being a vile human being and that the jealousy has consumed him if he will actually put someone in danger (Bevington, D. In this key passage (2.1.191–254), Iago persuades Roderigo that Desdemona loves Cassio. The contrast is stark between Othello's stately verse (2.1.194–204), and Iago's sneaking prose. The text in this article is available under the Creative Commons License. feeling or showing suspicion of someone's unfaithfulness in … Iago In Shakespeares Othello Essay 929 Words | 4 Pages. Another function of the vivid language that is used to describe Othello is to aid the audience’s perception of … Iago, in a later scene, holding the handkerchief that will become a vital part of his plan. Roderigo especially follows Iago orders; "That Thou, Iago, who hast had my purse As if the strings were thine, shouldst know of this (Diyanni)”. With Roderigo's extended silence, it too feels like an extended aside. The circular structure of the speech reinforces his enclosed grip of Roderigo. excessively conceited or absorbed in oneself; self-centered. Nothing has actually happened. How does Iago present himself to Othello? Iago is young and treacherous; he is a villain from the start, and though he cites his wounded pride and Othello's alleged infidelity with his wife Emilia, his actions are without justification. When he is with Othello he acts all respectful but with others he really shows his manipulative side. Through some carefully thought-out words and actions, Iago is able to manipulate others to do things in a way that benefits him and moves him closer toward his objectives. The metaphor of Othello and Desdemona as ‘well tuned’ string instruments (2.1.191–92) portrays their current harmony but also implies their vulnerability: it is not difficult for Iago to ‘set down the pegs’ – fiddle with the tuning keys – of their relationship. Find all the references in I, 1 of Othello as a devil. 9. Second, Cassio's a little too much of a lady's man. The Jacobean ideal of total chastity leaves Desdemona vulnerable to an unforgiving male gaze. Iago has been selfish and … In William Shakespeare’s The Tragedie of Othello, the Moore of Venice, he is a sinister force which steers virtuous people towards … Commonly used words are shown in bold. While a Jacobean audience would already know Othello is black by the use of the word ‘Moor’, a modern audience less familiar with the term would be clued in by Iago’s vivid descriptions. It has even been suggested that Iago is literally impotent, causing his embittered sexual jealously. Description of the Jewish Ghetto and the courtesans of Venice in, Coleridge's annotated copy of Shakespeare, Photograph of Joanna Vanderham and Hugh Quarshie in, Galleries, Reading Rooms, shop and catering opening times vary. Sinai, and Moses asks God his name. He acts two faced. Describe the relationship between Emilia and Iago. He is immoral, but very perceptive, keen, and able to manipulate people into falling for his deceptions. Explanation to attention grabber. While Emilia loves Iago, Iago does not love Emilia. (2.1.191–93). Alexandra Melville is a writer and educator. Having set himself up as Roderigo's instructor, Iago goes on to lecture him through a series of questions, mainly rhetorical. Cassio’s thoughts, feelings, and motivations are rarely revealed, but his character and behavior are significant for creating the conditions under which Iago can enact his plan. Othello by William Shakespeare depicts feminism through the oppression of women by the characters Cassio, Othello, and Iago. This conflation of honesty with soldierly bluntness disadvantages Desdemona, who can never communicate her honesty in this manner. The Jacobean view of Venetian women, in particular the idea that they were sexually immoral compounds how credible Roderigo, and Othello, find Iago's portrayal of Desdemona. that the duke wants to see Othello, as there is some trouble with the cyprus colony. Attention grabber. One of these is his ability to enter terrible images into the person's head using descriptive and vile words. In other words, what appearance does he present? Cunning, deceiving, and intelligent. Iago's food imagery contains sexual innuendo: 'Blest fig's end!' Iago's rage against female sexuality may therefore be just one example of his spiteful attacks on ‘otherness’ to soothe his sense of social impotence. Iago portrays desire in low terms, with reductive language: Desdemona's adoration is 'violence', Othello's wooing tales are 'bragging ... lies'. Iago is portrayed, through Roderigo's compliance, as masterful and persuasive, laying the ground for the ease with which he later poisons Othello's mind. (2.1.158) – more telling. Retorting, 'The wine she drinks is made of grapes' (2.1.238), Iago implies that Desdemona is just like all women – women who consume and indulge in gluttonous pleasures. www.photostage.co.uk. His language is heavily ironic, repeatedly calling Cassio a ‘knave’, though we know this is the role Iago himself gleefully identifies with. Iago looks on as Othello and Desdemona greet each other. She’s full of most blessed condition’, the sheer volume – and forcefulness – of Iago’s words obscure the illogical reasoning and overpower Roderigo. Like a devouring sexual animal, Desdemona will need an attractive man 'to give satiety a fresh appetite' (2.1.217–18). As honest as I am. Jacobean portrayals often reduce women to saints, mothers or whores. But sir, you be ruled by me' (2.1.248). Emilia and Iago’s relationship is extremely unbalanced. But Iago's salacious language is just that – words. Iago can convince anyone to see what his wants them to see, he did that with Desdemona father, Roderigo, and Othello. However, such extreme misogyny is the preserve of villains in Jacobean drama, suggesting that they, and Iago, overstep the mark. Shakespeare shifts the action from Venice to Cyprus. In the RSC’s production, both Othello and Iago were played by black actors, altering the impact of Iago’s most racist lines. To begin, Cassio portrays how superior he is to Bianca through his actions and words. What you know, you know. This angers Iago—Cassio's kissing Emilia in front of Iago is a bad idea. “To such exsufflicate and blown surmises.” — Othello (3.3.182) Grange: A … The image is reversed later in the play, when Emilia comments that men 'are all but stomachs, and we all but food' (3.4.93). He even draws Roderigo's conclusions for him, using the language of instructive discipline to describe imagined adultery: 'when these mutualities so marshal the way, hard at hand comes the master and main exercise' (2.1.246–48). Please consider the environment before printing, All text is © British Library and is available under Creative Commons Attribution Licence except where otherwise stated. The term honest is a word that is easy to describe yet often times difficult to portray. 1042 Words | 5 Pages. 3. behaving in an untrustworthy or fraudulent way. Iago has been to blame for the downfall of Othello because he is the one that created the jealousy within Othello. Organize by: [Relation] Letters: Show rare words: [Yes] No: Show phrases: [Yes] No: See desdemona used in context: 2 rhymes, 12 Shakespeare works, several books and articles. Iago is misogynistic. God replies: "I am that I … There is no evidence for adultery except that Cassio is 'a slipper and a subtle knave' (2.1.229), his slipperiness emphasised by the sibilance, and that Desdemona was seen to 'paddle with the palm of his hand' (2.1.240–41). It certainly makes Desdemona's retort to Iago earlier in the scene – 'Oh, most lame and impotent conclusion!' Yet earlier Iago tells us it is Cassio who 'takes her by the palm' (2.1.163). Through some carefully thought-out words and actions, Iago is able to manipulate others to do things in a way that benefits him and moves him closer toward his goals. Racial and female stereotypes also dominate. Engaged earlier in complex word-play with Cassio and Desdemona, he can now relax into an easier deception: false intimacy with Roderigo. Iago's power over Roderigo is emphasised through his sentence structure. The group wait, bantering on the topic of women. Iago portrays Desdemona as lustful, desperate to trade Othello for a more refined Cassio. Food imagery abounds. Iago makes it clear that his object is discord. the supposed sexual activity of Desdemona and Cassio. Words to describe Desdemona like a rose, alabaster, "shes framed as fruitful as the free elements", "virtuous" (cassio), "sweet" (othello), skin of "snow", strumpet Words to describe othello If I remember correctly, he swears by Janus, the two faced god, which is fitting because this is what Iago … Iago uses alcohol here to fuel anger. What news does Cassio bring to Othello? Iago refers to Othello not by his name but as 'the Moor', calling him 'the devil' (2.1.216) and 'defective' (2.1.220), a racist portrayal which makes Desdemona's unfaithfulness more believable to Roderigo. “But I do think it is their husband’s faults If wives do fall.” This speaks volumes for her relationship with Iago and does insinuate that she would not be averse to the idea of an affair; which corroborates the rumors about her and Othello, although she denies them. But I'll set down the pegs that make this music, Iago's base reduction figures sex as hunger: 'her eye must be fed' (2.1.215). 6. But a historicist reading could examine his depiction of women as a product of his time and culture. IAGO: For whiles this honest fool plies Desdemona to repair his fortunes, and she for him pleads strongly to the Moor. As he reminds us in his following soliloquy, ‘knavery’s plain face is never seen till used' (2.1.267). Honest is used in Shakespeare’s play, Othello, as well as in society to describe… Iago says (I.1, 65) "I am not what I am," which can be interpreted as "I am not what I seem." Your views could help shape our site for the future. Usage terms © Donald Cooper / Photostage Iago undoubtedly fits this description seeing that he is a sadist who attains power by annihilating others in cruel and unusual ways. Desdemona is graphically portrayed as rejecting continued ‘consumption’ of Othello: 'her delicate tenderness will find itself abused, begin to heave the gorge, disrelish and abhor the Moor' (2.1.221–22). The prose also contrasts with Iago's scene-closing soliloquy (2.1.267–93), where the constrained verse follows his precise, if delusional, reasoning. She is currently writing GCSE literature resources for HarperCollins Education. He is even referred to as “the thick lips”. His words are his sword. Yet Iago is aware that he is a "super subtle venetian" and reveals to the audience "I am not what I am" 6 Iago's last line in the play to show his true evil nature. 2. Desdemona is a lady of spirit and intelligence. His control of their heartstrings mirrors his control of Roderigo’s purse strings (1.1.2–3). Click on a word above to view its definition. (Aside) O, you are well tuned now! But it is also reminiscent of a quotation from the Bible which Shakespeare would have known: In Exodus, God gives his laws to Moses on Mt. Iago is not like those men who loyally serve their masters all their lives and then are fired when they're too old to work. amorality, duplicity, cynicism, pride, and of course, ego. Although Roderigo counters, ‘I cannot believe that in her. This is a contemporary obscenity, figs being associated with the female vulva. Iago's misogyny has been plain earlier in the scene and builds here: young women are portrayed as foolish, having an innately sexualised 'nature' (2.1.222–23) and whorish for touching hands, even for thinking. Words to Describe iago As you've probably noticed, adjectives for " iago " are listed above. There are 53 other words to describe iago listed above. Rare words are dimmed. Roderigo dismisses it as 'courtesy' but admits he 'did' see it. Why not take a few moments to tell us what you think of our website? “Wit depends on dilatory time.” — Iago (2.3.373) Devesting: To take away, or remove the clothing. Iago notices Cassio's courteous manner towards Desdemona and resolves, 'with as little a web as this will I / ensnare as great a fly as Cassio' (2.1.164). For all the claims of military straightforwardness of some other characters, Desdemona is the most direct and honest speaker in the play. In this manner, we are colluders, silent witnesses of his evil, failing to intervene. Commonly used words are shown in bold.Rare words are dimmed. Repeated imperatives begin the speech: 'Come hither' (2.1.206), 'Lay thy finger thus', 'let thy soul be instructed', 'Mark me' (2.1.212). Like a devouring sexual animal, Desdemona will need an attractive man 'to give satiety a fresh appetite' (2.1.217–18). Iago’s reputation for straightforward honesty is the foundation of his deceptions. JEALOUS: Iago's motives for everything he did throughout the course of the play was jealousy. Iago and Roderigo describe Othello at the start of the play, without even naming him, using his racial difference to identify him, referring to him as “the Moor”, “an old black ram”. Desdemona is relieved by Othello’s arrival and the joyful party depart, leaving Iago with Roderigo. The action of Emilia handing over the handkerchief to Iago unknowingly sets in motion the ultimate end to their marriage. dishonest. In this image, Iago suggests gagging and retching, which, along with the concept of 'abused' 'tenderness', has connotations of disgust with oral sex. Presented by the speech and actions of all characters, the modern audience can construct a character sketch of Othello that contains all the elements stated above. She has taught English at sixth form and secondary schools in London, and has created education packs for Years 4–6 for Fuel Theatre. Iago’s crude language is excused as that of a straightforward soldier, with Cassio allowing, 'He speaks home, madam; you may relish him more in the soldier than in the scholar' (2.1.161–62). Iago uses various methods to manipulate the characters. After the interchange between desdemona and iago in act II scene I Asked by Kimberly V #743541 on 1/16/2018 4:20 AM Last updated by Aslan on 1/16/2018 7:33 PM "Demand me nothing. He only manages three (2.1.211, 236, 242) before conceding with an unconvincing 'Well' (2.1.256), perfectly expressive of his spinelessness. But, away from his superiors, Iago’s crudeness becomes obsessively salacious. 7. Iago also broken the bond of Roderigo and Cassio. 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This aside also encapsulates his keen sense of irony (‘As honest as I am’, 2.1.193) and the role of the audience. Choose Yes please to open the survey in a new browser window or tab, and then complete it when you are ready. Indeed, Iago's argument itself is construed in the language of female reproduction, described as a 'most pregnant and unforced position' (2.1.224) that reminds us of the Jacobean archetype of the perfect yet paradoxical woman, the virgin mother. characterized by clever, unfair, or unscrupulous control or influence on a person or situation, guilty of or involving betrayal or deception, guilty of or involving deceit (concealing or misrepresenting the truth) ; deceiving or misleading others, given to or involved in making secret and underhanded plans, excessive or prejudiced loyalty or support for one's own cause, group, or gender, excessively conceited or absorbed in oneself; self-centered, behaving in an untrustworthy or fraudulent way, feeling or showing suspicion of someone's unfaithfulness in a relationship; feeling or showing envy of someone or their achievements and advantages, having or showing skill in achieving one's ends by deceit or evasion. Iago closes just as he began, with a command to follow instructions: 'watch you tonight; for the command' (2.1.249–50). In the speech he dwells on body parts – eyes, hands, lips, blood – and the 'act of sport' (2.1.217), i.e. The prose allows Iago to produce a persuasive outpouring and release repetitious piles of images designed to bury Roderigo's weak objections. (2.1.238). jealous. Click on a word above to view its definition. “Devesting them for bed.” — Iago (2.3.181) Exsufflicate: Empty, frivolous. Iago’s use of words against people begins during the start of the play where he is talking to Roderigo. Shakespeare’s Iago A depraved soul would generate chaos, inflict pain, and stir up trouble for its own satisfaction. Here, Iago's prose feels like a loosening, like a man undoing his belt a notch. And the trap itself is so subtle as to be almost hidden: all Iago asks is whether Roderigo saw Desdemona 'paddle' Cassio's hand, a playful word echoing the image of 'sport' and also Cassio’s supposedly watery nature. Desdemona arrives later with Iago and Emilia. Alcohol is known for causing trouble, and trouble is what Cassio is in for under Iago's care (Othello. His speech plays upon stereotypes, revealing the dangerous underbelly of his earlier misogynistic ‘jokes’. Like all people, real and imagined, he's got some flaws. 1115 Words | 5 Pages. CASEY KALEBA: There is another repetitive word used to describe a character, this time in reference to Othello. Iago started this because he was jealous of Othello because he was not made lieutenant, and Cassio was. A persuasive outpouring and release repetitious piles of images designed to bury Roderigo extended! Has taught English at sixth form and secondary schools in London, and to... 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Writing GCSE literature resources for HarperCollins education in terms of animals louis BUTELLI the! Of honesty with soldierly bluntness disadvantages Desdemona, every word counts, real and,. Are listed above Dilatory time. ” — Iago ( 2.3.373 ) Devesting: to take away, remove! Secondary schools in London, and stir up trouble for its own satisfaction window or tab, of! In terms of animals the worst of thoughts / the worst of words ' ( 2.1.217–18 ) really his. Superior he is immoral, but very perceptive, keen, and she for him pleads strongly to passage... Vital part of his plan to drive Othello mad but a historicist could. Emilia handing over the handkerchief to Iago unknowingly sets in motion the ultimate to! The word Moor is almost used in place of a name for Othello the... Of spirit and intelligence will need an attractive man 'to give satiety a fresh appetite ' ( )..., overstep the mark listen, which Roderigo submissively obeys s arrival and the party. 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