Iago's Motives In Othello

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In William Shakespeare's play Othello, Shakespeare tells the story of a Venetian general, Othello, who is a victim of a deceiving acquaintance, Iago. In the play, Iago is a very confusing character who makes readers often question what his true motives are. Iago is able to hide his true thoughts and real intentions from everyone that surrounds him. His actions are all planned out to reach his goal in life, which is to breakdown Othello. From the very beginning of the play readers witness why Iago may have this specific motive in life. Iago's motives form from: Othello’s decision to make Cassio his lieutenant instead of him, his idea that Othello slept with Emilia, and pure jealousy he has for Othello. In the first scene of the play readers immediately learn about Othello's decision to make Cassio his new lieutenant. This action makes Iago very angry because he believes that he is meant for and deserves the position. Iago says "I know my price, I…show more content…
Iago first mentions his concern that Othello did this when he states, "I hate the Moor, and it is thought abroad that 'twixt my sheets h’as done my office" (1.iii.177). This also shows how Iago has some trust issues, which is contradicting for the fact he lies all the time. Another time that suspicion is brought up is when Iago says "...I stand accountant for as great a sin, But partly led to diet my revenge, For that I do suspect that the lusty Moor hath leaped into my seat” (2.i.285). Iago believes that Emilia has cheated on him and this makes Iago's motives with Othello even bigger. This situation makes Iago want to get even with Othello which leads him to separate Othello and Desdemona's marriage. In doing so, Iago convinces Othello "that he (Cassio) is too familiar with his (Othello's) wife" (1.iii.386). Suggesting that Desdemona is having an affair with Cassio, this leads to his motive of destroying their

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