Essay by PaperNerd ContributorHigh School, 11th grade August 2001

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Othello, Shakespeare's tragic hero of the play, had too much passion for his own good. His irrational behavior, caused by his love for his wife Desdemona, eventually led to their destruction. Othello's characterization of himself is completely true when he says "Of one that loved not wisely but too well;" (V,ii,344).

Othello always remained faithful to Desdemona. He truly loved her and respected her. Before he heard the rumor, he was totally pleased with his relationship with Desdemona. "It gives me wonder great as my content To see you here before me." (II,i,181-182) He was an honorable man, a general in the Venetian army. His own character faults ruined him. Othello was not observant and did not realize, or even fathom, he was being lied to. His naivety is comparable to a child's, because he believes everything he hears, but listens to no one who will talk reason with him.

From the beginning of the play, the reader sees that Othello loves Desdemona very well. This changed from an admirable trait to a serious flaw. He was willing to kill Desdemona, the woman he loved, over the turmoil that had been created. He became blind and the love that had been so strong turned to equally strong hate. "O perjured woman! Thou dost stone my heart, AND makist me call what I intend to do A murder," (V,ii,63-65).

His hate was bred from the fact that he no longer trusted Desdemona. This was a major factor contributing to their deaths. A handkerchief in the wrong hands and words from Iago were enough to convince Othello of his wife's supposed crime. Without realizing his mistake, he punishes her, hitting her and verbally accusing her of being unfaithful. His temper eventually got the best of him after he strangled her.