Act 1, Scene 1 Flashcards Preview

A Level English Literature - Othello > Act 1, Scene 1 > Flashcards

Flashcards in Act 1, Scene 1 Deck (17)
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A1, S1: Roderigo: "Tush, never tell me, I take it much unkindly / That thou, Iago, who hast had my purse / As if the strings were thine, shouldst know of this"

- Starts in media res
- "This" refers to marriage of Othello and Desdemona
-> Audience has to infer what has already happened which engages them more and makes them work harder


A1, S1: Iago: "'Sblood, but you will not hear me. If I ever did dream of such a matter, / Abhor me."

- "'Sblood" is an expletive to feign offence at Roderigo's accusation - denies it to cover up his lies
- Shows early manipulation


A1, S1: Roderigo: "Thou told'st me thou didst hold him in thy hate"

- Exophoric reference to Othello


A1, S1: Iago: "a great arithmetician, / One Michael Cassio, a Florentine"

- Shows Cassio only know theory, not practice
- Also shows us he is from Florence - only one in the play, so we see his status as an outsider


A1, S1: Iago: "A fellow almost damned in a fair wife"

- Shows Cassio is overly flirtatious - indicator of how Iago will use him later on


A1, S1: Iago: "Nor the division of battle knows / More than a spinster, unless the bookish theoric, / Wherein the toged consuls can propose / As masterly as he"

- Negative connotations of "spinster"
- "toged consuls" as a reference to Ancient Rome (perhaps a comment on antiquated, outdated ideals?)


A1, S1: Roderigo: "What a full fortune does the thick-lips owe"

- Racist synecdoche - abuse of Othello and shows Roderigo to be unsympathetic


A1, S1: Iago: "Call up her father, / Rouse him, make after him, poison his delight..."

- List of imperatives -> manipulating Roderigo
- Also completes Roderigo's previous line of iambic pentameter


A1, S1: Iago "Even now, now, very now, an old black ram / Is tupping your white ewe."

- Contrasting connotations of black and white
- Preys on Brabantio's racist sensibilities
- Deliberately vulgar image


A1, S1: Iago: "Zounds sir, you are one of those that will not serve God / if the devil bid you. Because we come to do you service and you think we are ruffians, you'll have your daughter covered with a Barbary horse; you'll have your nephews / neigh to you; you'll have coursers for cousins, and jennets for Germans"

- "Barbary" - coast of North Africa - racial abuse
- Racist comparison of horses to people of mixed-race
- Speak in prose and unleashes his desire to use profane language to be rude to Brabantio as Brabantio does not know him
- Tells the 'truth' in a crude and over the top way to incite a reaction from Brabantio


A1, S1: Iago: "To the gross clasps of a lascivious Moor"

- "Lascivious" used as deliberately sexual language which Iago knows will upset Brabantio


A1, S1: Brabantio: "This accident is not unlike my dream; / Belief of it oppresses me already"

- Shows Iago is catalysing his internal worry
- Begins to believe Iago almost immediately - foreshadows his deception of Othello and Desdemona
- Foregrounds deception - key theme of play


A1, S1: Iago: "Though I do hate him as I do hell pains, / Yet for necessity of present life / I must show out a flag and sign of love / Which is indeed but sign."

- Idea of false behaviour and dishonesty
- "Must" shows Iago believes this is a necessity


A1, S1: Brabantio: "It is too true an evil. Gone she is, / And what's to come of my despised time / Is naught but bitterness"

- Expresses his misery
- Assumes everything he has been told is true because he knows the fact she has left is a truth
- Use of hyperbole - overdramatic


A1, S1: Brabantio: "Where didst thou see her? - O unhappy girl! - With the Moor, say'st thou? - Who would be a father?..."

- Fragmented speech with rhetorical questions to show desperation, upset and panic


A1, S1: Brabantio: "O heaven! How got she out? O treason of the blood!"

- Apostrophes show extent of his emotions


A1, S1: Brabantio": "Fathers, from hence trust not your daughters' minds / By what you see them act. Is there not charms by which the property of youth and maidhood / May be abused?"

- Cannot comprehend real, legitimate ways of Othello and Desdemona ending up together, so assumes the only way it could occur is through the use of magic (and he means it literally)