Shakespeare’s Language (Othello)

static Four hundred years of this, intervene between his speaking and our hearing.
certes Certainly
affined bound, obliged
producted produced
Zounds by Christ’s wounds
What are the most problematic words? Those that we still use but that we use with different meanings.
circumstance ceremonious talk
spinster one who spins
propose converse
peculiar personal
owe own
bravery impertinence, defiance
Three worlds in Othello Venice, Anthropophogi, Cyprus
What does Shakespeare frequently do? Frequently shifts his sentences away from “normal” English arrangements-often in order to use a line’s poetic rhythm to emphasize a particular word, sometimes to give a character his or her own speech patterns or to allow the character to speak in a special way.
Shakespeare often… places the verb before the subject or places the subject between the two parts of a verb. He also sometimes places the object before the subject and verb.
In some plays Shakespeare… makes systematic use of inversions
What do interruptions provide? details that catch the audience up in the speeches
Separation of basic sentence elements… forces the audience to attend to supporting details while waiting for the basic sentence elements to come together.
Instead of separating basic sentence elements, Shakespeare sometimes… holds them back, delaying them until much subordinate material has already been given.
Shakespeare’s sentences are sometimes complicated because… He omits words and parts of words that English sentences normally require.
Two kinds of wordplay Puns and metaphors
Pun A play on words that sound the same but have different meanings, Shakespeare uses these frequently.
abused means both deluded, deceived and violated, injured
erring means both wandering and sinning
complexion means both temperament and skin color
period signifies the final point or limit of Othello’s life
Play meaning wagar but carrying a secondary meaning of engage in sexual sport
cope meaning meet, encounter but also copulate
sport meaning fun but also amorous play
Honest both an indicator of Iago’s supposed truthfulness and a condescending term for a social inferior- and in reference to Desdemona, where, as is standard when it refers to a woman, it always means “chaste”
Metaphor A play on words in which one object or idea is expressed as if it were something else, something with which it shares common features.
Example of Metaphor Iago referring to Cassio ‘beleed and calmed’ saying Cassio has interfered with his military career

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