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Othello is the main character in William Shakespeare's The Tragedy of Othello, the Moor of Venice. The work revolves around four central characters: Othello, a Moorish general in the Venetian army; his wife, Desdemona; his lieutenant, Cassio; and his trusted ensign, Iago.

Othello falls in love with Desdemona, a Venetian beautiful woman of whom he is several years her senior. This enrages and disappoints her father, a Venetian senator. Upon defending her choice, her father reluctantly accepts the union, but warns Othello that she will some day deceive him. When he is deployed to Cyprus in the service of the Republic of Venice, Desdemona accompanies him. There, he is manipulated by his ensign Iago into believing that she is an adulteress, and, in the last act, he murders his spouse.