Shakespeare's Othello: Plot Summary
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Shakespeare's Othello: Plot Summary

Test your knowledge of the tragic events that unfold in Shakespeare's Othello with this plot summary quiz. Explore the key events and character interactions as you recall the sequence of events leading to the ultimate tragedy.


Questions and Answers

What does Iago do to convince Cassio to ask Desdemona for forgiveness?

He lies to him about Othello's feelings.

What does Iago do after Othello kills Desdemona?

He helps Othello cover it up.

What does Emilia do when she finds out about Iago's deception?

She attempts to silence Iago.

What does Othello do when he finds out that Desdemona was innocent?

<p>He kills himself.</p> Signup and view all the answers

How does Othello die?

<p>He kills himself with a sword</p> Signup and view all the answers

Study Notes

  • Iago is a malicious man who is working to destroy Othello's reputation.

  • Iago tells Roderigo that he can use him to start a fight with Cassio so that Cassio will be disgraced.

  • Iago gets Cassio drunk and then sends Roderigo to start the fight.

  • Roderigo stabs Montano, and Iago sends him to raise the alarm.

  • Othello arrives and calms the situation.

  • Iago tells Roderigo that he can use him to further his own agenda, but warns that Roderigo will eventually have to betray Othello.

  • Iago tricks Cassio into confessing that he has been having an affair with Desdemona, and Othello becomes jealous and goes into a fit of epilepsy.

  • Iago tells Othello to hide nearby and watch as he extracts information from Cassio about his affair with Desdemona.

  • Othello overhears Cassio admit that he has been sleeping with Bianca, and he becomes even more jealous and angry.

  • Iago convinces Cassio to ask Desdemona for forgiveness, but Othello overhears this and becomes even more enraged.

  • Othello eventually kills Desdemona and Cassio, and Iago helps him cover it up.

  • Othello is upset about matters of state and accuses Desdemona of being a whore.

  • Iago assures Desdemona that Othello is just upset and that everything is going to plan.

  • Later that night, however, Othello ominously tells Desdemona to wait for him in bed and to send Emilia away.

  • Meanwhile, Iago assures the still-complaining Roderigo that everything is going as planned: in order to prevent Desdemona and Othello from leaving, Roderigo must kill Cassio.

  • Roderigo misses his mark and Cassio wounds him instead. Iago wounds Cassio and runs away.

  • When Othello hears Cassio’s cry, he assumes that Iago has killed Cassio as he said he would.

  • Lodovico and Graziano enter to see what the commotion is about. Iago enters shortly thereafter and flies into a pretend rage as he “discovers” Cassio’s assailant Roderigo, whom he murders.

  • Cassio is taken to have his wound dressed.

  • Meanwhile, Othello stands over his sleeping wife in their bedchamber, preparing to kill her.

  • Desdemona wakes and attempts to plead with Othello. She asserts her innocence, but Othello smothers her.

  • Emilia enters with the news that Roderigo is dead. Othello asks if Cassio is dead too and is mortified when Emilia says he is not.

  • After crying out that she has been murdered, Desdemona changes her story before she dies, claiming that she has committed suicide.

  • Emilia asks Othello what happened, and Othello tells her that he has killed Desdemona for her infidelity, which Iago brought to his attention.

  • Montano, Graziano, and Iago come into the room. Iago attempts to silence Emilia, who realizes what Iago has done.

  • At first, Othello insists that Iago has told the truth, citing the handkerchief as evidence.

  • Once Emilia tells him how she found the handkerchief and gave it to Iago, Othello is crushed and begins to weep.

  • He tries to kill Iago but is disarmed. Iago kills Emilia and flees, but he is caught by Lodovico and Montano, who return holding Iago captive.

  • They also bring Cassio, who is now in a chair because of his wound. Othello wounds Iago and is disarmed.

  • Lodovico tells Othello that he must come with them back to Venice to be tried. Othello makes a speech about how he would like to be remembered, then kills himself with a sword he had hidden on his person.

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