Desdemona

1.3.208-218

Father, this isn’t easy for me. I’m torn. I owe you respect because you gave me life and education. You’re the one I have to obey. I’m your daughter. But this man here is my husband now, and I owe him as much as my mother owed you, just as she preferred you to her own father. So I have to give my obedience to the Moor, my husband.

Othello

2.1.199-209

I’m amazed you got here before me. But I’m overjoyed! My love, if the could always be this wonderful, I’d want the wind to blow until it wakes the dead, and whipped up waves as tall as mountains! If I died right now I’d be completely happy, since I’ll probably never be as happy as this again in my life.

Iago – Act I, Scene i

For when my outward action doth demonstrate

The native act and figure of my heart

In compliment extern, ’tis not long after

But I will wear my heart upon my sleeve

For daws to peck at: I am not what I am.

Analyses: In pursuit of his revenge Iago will become duplicitous, never showing his true emotion to the outside world. The irony of this statement is that he is telling the truth about his dishonesty. Iago knows that if the rest of the characters knew what lurked in his heart, he would be destroyed. Othello and his loyal men would tear him apart, like birds. The idiom “wear my heart on my sleeve” comes from this line in Othello.

Desdemona – Act II, Scene i

I am not merry; but I do beguile
The thing I am, by seeming otherwise.

Analysis: While speaking to Iago Desdemona says that, though she pretends to be happy, she is really worried about Othello’s safety. This passage shows the care she has for her husband, and also that she is capable of hiding her emotion. In this conversation with Desdemona, Iago reveals how little he thinks of women, and that they use their beauty or wit to manipulate men.

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