Deception In Othello

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Many have credited William Shakespeare's plays as being the greatest of all time, and The Tragedy of Othello, the Moor of Venice is no exception. Each reading of Othello yields new revelations and demonstrates the intricacies of Shakespeare‘s work. The play’s protagonist, Othello, can be seen as being overly trusting of Iago. However, this is not the case, Iago deceives many characters, not just Othello. Moreover, Othello’s actions are based on seemingly physical evidence, giving him good reason to act. Indeed, Othello has no reason to distrust Iago, his loyal ensign. Throughout the play, the majority of the characters are deceived by Iago, believing him to be honest and trustworthy, not just Othello. Whilst speaking with Emilia, Desdemona,…show more content…
Iago actively fought by Othello’s side in one or more battles. Iago “[saw] the cannon, when it hath blown [Othello’s] ranks into the air” (Shakespeare, 3.4.128-129) and as such Othello and Iago needed to trust one another. They are both military men, and as such they had to trust each other with their lives. This leaves no room for doubt or thought of deception. On the battlefield doubt among soldiers is a sure way to death. Why should Othello assume such a man would lie to him and seek to cause him harm? Additionally, from Othello’s perspective, Iago is a loyal officer, who is not afraid to put his life on the line to protect his fellow soldiers. In act five when Iago heard Cassio cry out, he seemingly ran to his rescue and bravely killed Roderigo, Cassio’s would be assassin. Iago is also seen warning Othello of Brabantio's imminent arrival, as well as of his “bad intent” (Shakespeare, 1.2.56). Once again showing his loyalty to his general. If Othello is unable to trust the word of his own ancient, who has put his life on the line for his fellow soldiers, who can he trust? Othello is not overly trusting, he trusts those who have earned and deserve his
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