The Valor of Othello
15 December 2002
According to the American Heritage Dictionary a hero is: 1. In mythology and legend, a man celebrated for his bold exploits. 2. A person noted for feats of courage or nobility of purpose. 3. A person noted for special feats in a particular field. 4. The principle male character in a literary work (The American Heritage dictionary, p.392). This concludes that anyone can be a hero as long as they have these common traits.
Othello, a general in the Venetian army is the hero in William Shakespeare's play Othello. He is a moor who worked his way to the top. He is praised for his abilities although he is black. This occurred despite the fact that many countries utilized slavery during this time period.
He demonstrates his bravery and his ability to keep his temper in check when the fuming Brabantio confronts Othello about how he had tricked his daughter into falling in love with him.
A fight between Othello's men and Brabantio seemed inevitable. But Othello says "keep your swords bright....with your weapons."(Othello by Shakespeare, p.25 Act 1 Sc. 2 line 76). He had avoided bloodshed and managed to come out looking the better for it. This could have resulted in him losing face but he isn't pompous or arrogant and takes the argument to the duke. This demonstrates Othello's ability to solve a problem under intense situations. This is a sure sign of valiance.
Even other characters in the play regard Othello as a hero. One of these people is the duke of Venice. He specifically mentions Othello as a heroic person when he says
"Valiant Othello, we must straight employ you against the general enemy Ottoman." (P.33 Act 1...