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The Clever and Devious Iago of Othello Essay

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In Othello, Iago serves as a clever manipulator. He uses his skills on the stupid and naïve Roderigo to get revenge on Othello. Iago’s main reason for his hatred of Othello is because he is passed over for the lieutenant position given to Michael Cassio. Iago also seems to delight in the manipulation and destruction he is causes.

One major way Iago uses his manipulation on Roderigo is by jealousy. At the start of the play, we hear a conversation between Roderigo and Iago. Roderigo is angry because he has been giving money to Iago to help him gain the love of Desdemona, but he learns of Desdemona’s marriage to Othello. Also in Act one Scene one Iago convinces Roderigo to spoil Othello’s marriage by stirring Desdemona’s family against the Moor. At the end of Act one Iago has his first soliloquy. Iago says, “Thus do I ever make my fool my purse:/ For I mine own gained knowledge should profane/ If I would time expend with such a snipe/ But for my sport and profit” (1.3.384-387). He reveals his plan of cheating Roderigo out of his money and giving him unfulfilled promises. Another exa...


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