What role did the clown play in Othello?

1 Answer

amy-lepore's profile pic

amy-lepore | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted on

The clown is a minor character in "Othello."  He is a jester, or fool.  The clown jokes lewdly with the musicians in Act III scene 1 before dismissing them with Othello's payment.  In Act III scene 4 he briefly jests with Desdemona before carrying a message for her.

As comic relief, the clown does not do much to interrupt the play's increasing tension; he may just serve as a conventional character expected by Shakespeare's audiences and therefore aptly supplied to please the masses.