Discuss the significance and dramatic purposes of Lodovico in Othello by William Shakespeare.

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thanatassa | College Teacher | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

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Lodovico is a minor character in Othello by William Shakespeare who is a kinsman of Brabantio. He serves to further the plot by conveying a letter from the Duke of Venice to Cyprus. As well as functioning as a messenger, he also functions as a viewpoint from which to observe the degree to which Othello has changed. Both the audience and the other characters have watched Othello gradually deteriorating, and because the change is gradual, we might underestimate how dramatic it actually is. Lodovico, who hasn't seen Othello since Othello left Venice, on seeing Othello strike Desdemona, says:

"Is this the noble Moor whom our full Senate

Call all in all sufficient?" (IV.i.265-266).

 This makes us aware that Othello was a widely admired character and that the changes wrought by jealousy have transformed him into almost a completely different person.


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