By examining the language of the speeches closely what do you learn of the change in Othello’s character? Essay

Othello’s mind is ravaged by the act of adultery committed by his counter-part Desdemona, which is the truth in mind, however false in reality. A tribute to Iago’s cunning is thus. By Act III Sc III he has played Othello for the “noble moor” to “O now, forever farewell the tranquil mind! ” He is seasoned and ready to serve unjust and immoral punishments.

We can truly see the change between the old “noble moor” and the monstrous “backer devil” through two of his major speeches. The first recited when confronted by Brabantio and the Venetian Senators. The second, while being played by the dark hands of Iago later on through the play.

The first speech flows particularly eloquently and his very praising of his masters there as he does call them “potent, grave and reverned” each means a different virtue. The speech flows well and has very few hard syllables using many p sounds and f sounds like “soft phrase of speech” so would have a calming effect on the audience as they would be listening to it. Even the numerous mentions of battle sound nice and pleasant. The speech is dipped in euphoria while being held as the ankle because nearing the end of the speech he stops being as nice and he becomes ironic with “what drugs, what charms, what conjuration? which adds variety and effect to his speech.This is also a personal remark to Brabantio who accused him of witchcraft, so it is funny how that no matter how low he thinks of Othello, he managed to charm his daughter who was brought up to not do things like this. And therefore is reflective of his poor parenting. The second speech is well contrasted to this, as it is full of harsh abrasive soundz which are more sinister and provoking like “the neighing steed and the shrill trump” Also the use of violent exciting imagery sets in feeling of a storm brewing which quite yet, hasn’t exploded.

He once again talks very much about war and his life in war. However now we see that he explains all the negative aspects, as before in Act I he never once mentioned the death in war even thought that is its whole purpose. He makes it a noble game whereas now he mentions “mortal engines” where he calls cannons killing machines. However he keeps the honour in the battle as he mentions where patriotic symbols like the “ear piercing fife” and the “Royal Banner”.These constant mentions to war when Othello is ever socially challenged shows a venerability about him as he needs to go back into what he knows, battle, instead of trying to tackle the problems ahead of him. We also see through his portrayals of war how he himself has change through the play.

Though his thoughts on war may be the same throughout the play he was able in Act I to think clearly enough to make everything seem nice and nobilic. Soft phrases and uses of a variety of literary devises such as alliteration, pathetic fallacy, and use of sycophantic phrase allow for a calmer reflection of Othello.Othello seems to revert to his more primal nature of fighting and war where he sings its praises in his second speech “Pride, pomp, and circumstance of glorious war! ” He has changed his attitude by this time and is now willing to go to further extremes. It seems though, that in Act III, Othello has gone slightly mad. So distraught is he over Desdemona’s conceptual sins that he has relinquished his old self “O now, for ever farewell the tranquil mind” and given in by his own count, to the evils of time and space.Similar to Lady Macbeth’s calling to all “devils of the night” they both relieve themselves of their moral duties. This is interesting because that means they are decent people usually and physically wouldn’t be able to their evil acts.

This shows just how the “noble moor” was in fact truly a noble moor. This redemption into evil is confirmed through the literary technique, repetition, repetition of the word farewell seems very much like a drum beat. The rhyming schemes inbetween these is very complex and goes 4,2,4,11,0.It seems to start with sorts of verse into then a conclusion with the 11 syllables between and then a repetition of farewell. So we see how such a noble man could be lead to such destructive paths by guiding hands. We examined the speeches and we now see how Othello has been spirred into a frenzy with the blood-lust of war on his chin. He hath changed.

And through these speeches, the artist was Shakespeare who allowed us to understand, or just know, that he has changed but we don’t know how we can tell – until we examine why we don’t see all the incredible devices he uses.


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