| Quote #1
Here, Iago claims he hates Othello because Othello passed him, Iago, over for a promotion, giving "one Michael Cassio" the job as his military lieutenant instead. Iago claims he's far more qualified than Cassio, who lacks Iago's experience on the field of battle. Clearly, Iago seems pretty jealous. But is this the real reason Iago sets out to destroy Othello? Or, is this merely an excuse to go after him? In other words, does Iago say all of this in order to manipulate Roderigo? (Roderigo, as we soon learn, is completely envious of Othello for marrying Desdemona.)
| Quote #2
Now this is interesting. Earlier, Iago said he hates Othello because "the Moor" passed him over for a promotion. Yet, here, Iago says he hates Othello because he's heard a rumor that Othello has been hooking up with Iago's wife, Emilia, "twixt [Iago's] sheets." Iago says he doesn't exactly know if the rumor's true, but he's decided to go ahead and ruin Othello's life anyway. Seems like Iago has listed a couple of incompatible motives for seeking to destroy Othello, wouldn't you say? So, we're just not sure we can believe that Iago's jealous of Othello's supposed relationship with Emilia.
| Quote #3
Cassio's a proper man: let me see now:
A few lines earlier (see above passage), Iago claimed that he suspects Othello has been sleeping with his wife, Emilia. Here, Iago shares his plot to destroy Othello with the audience – since Othello is so gullible, Iago will lead him "by the nose," making Othello believe that his, Othello's, wife is having an affair with Cassio. Iago plans to plant the seeds of jealousy in Othello. What's interesting about this passage is the way Iago sees his evil plan as a "monstrous birth," a thing that he will bring to "light." What's up with that?