Revenge in Wuthering Heights and Othello Essay

Revenge in Wuthering Heights and Othello


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The following paper gives a comparison between the revenge of Iago from Othello and Heathcliff from Wuthering Heights. Both the novels are a famous piece of art written by two of the most famous authors, namely Shakespeare (Othello) and Emily Bronte (Wuthering Heights). Both the novels give revenge a new name. Other than revenge, both of the novels have a certain meaning of love. One can be described as lust for money and wealth and the other can be the desire for true love.

Revenge has two faces. One is known as injustice and the other one is the opposite, which can be termed as an unfair act. Revenge can called justice only if it being a result of any judicial orders and the actions are ethical. An unfair act can be forcing someone to go through the same that you have been going through just to make him feel the pain and problems that came into the way.

Iago’s Revenge in Othello:

The character of Iago in the novel is shown as a demanding and a powerful one. Throughout the plot he had a huge hunger for revenge. The main rationale behind his idea of revenge was that he wanted to be the in charge rather than Othello, the anchor. This thought created a certain gap and anger in Iago towards the moor. Iago traps the anchor in his trap if dishonesty. To accomplish his wicked ideas, he takes the support of different plans and faltering that tempted and embeds descriptions in Othello’s head that directed to his termination. But what is significant is that he provides Othello the reason to assassinate guiltless Desdemona.  Iago is persistently like a dummy master; dragging the threads of the individuals around him (Book Rags, pp.1).

At certain moments in the novel, Iago is missed by himself. At different points in the book, it is quite noticeable that Iago is talking to himself which portrays the fact the he is trying to tell his plans to the audience. This act of his shows that he has much internal chaos that he ports closed up to his chest, but when the chance occurs, he explains his actions with an obsession. His intentions are very clear from the beginning of the narration. He starts to prove that Othello is having an amour with his spouse.  The sarcasm of this declaration is that in the subsequent sentence, he claims that he suspects this and if he suspects this fact, he’d act on it. Therefore, for a reader, this gives the impression that Iago is insane and exceptionally suspicious, going so extreme as to arrange a collection of assassinations, just on the doubt of disloyalty.

In Iago’s chauvinistic mind, he views his better-quality, Othello, as being of a substandard faith. He thinks of Othello as an animal rather than a human being, and considers that Othello has no right to marry the very beautiful and white youthful Desdemona. This shows the evil mind and soul of Iago. Not only Iago loathe Othello, he had a certain hatred for Cassio. Cassio considered Iago as his friend, but the cunning character of Iago covers Cassio in his retribution scheme so that he can be given the designation of deputy after his dishonor.

The character of Iago can be given the name of a chess game. He makes use of his diverse forfeits to do the filthy efforts so as to obliterate the general and his wife.  He was insane to such an extent with love for revenge that he blames his own wife. He asks his wife to snatch the handkerchief of Desdemona, so that she could feel herself responsible for her murder when she finds the purpose for which the handkerchief was sued. From one scene to another, he is always busy in spreading lies from one person to another. This act extended his story of lies further and further. He proceeds as a gracious human being, and everybody thought of Iago as their friend.  He utilizes each and every occasion probable to produce an emotion of disbelieve, so that every person is suspicious.  Being a master of dishonesty, this was not tricky. Since evil lives longer, he finally gains his revenge from Othello to be the moor, although his wife tires to reveals his sinister plans to everyone, but alas, it was too late as Desdemona died and his husband had already accomplished what he was planning since forever (Book Rags, pp.1).

Heathcliff’s Revenge in Wuthering Heights:

In Wuthering Heights, the main motivation for Heathcliff with the idea of revenge was unanswered love.  Although there is immense proposal at the beginning of the work of fiction that Catherine loves Heathcliff. But the problem occurred when it was declared that she cannot marry anyone who is below her station. Though Catherine proved to be a very caring and loving individual, but she could never offer Heathcliff what he desired. Heathcliff really loved her and wanted her to be with him. Additional issues simply make worse these feelings. The situation got worse when Catherine was forced to marry her wealthy neighbor, Linton, from the country side and adding more to that, Heathcliff was treated very inadequately by her brother. Leading Heathcliff’s go back shortly in existence, the other characters are astonished to observe that he has turned out to be a gentleman. He has come back again to purchase Wuthering Heights and impose vengeance on the individuals who estranged him from Catherine. The severance from Catherine is what inspires him to impose vengeance on the others (Anonymous, pp.1).

Heathcliff is a spirit who is beleaguered by his love for Catherine and by his resentment over his poor behavior by Catherine’s brother. Heathcliff has always been treated like a son by Catherine’s father but as soon after the death of her father, her brother demands retribution on Heathcliff by treating him as a base servant. Heathcliff senses more anger and resentment when he hears Catherine says that she would be “dishonored” by adoring Heathcliff.  He runs away, overflowing with abhorrence for everyone who have impaired him.  At the time when he returns to Wuthering Heights, he arrives as an owner of a house. After Catherine’s loss, his resentment strengthens; making him to act spitefully and unkindly to the younger generation (Anonymous, pp.1).


Both the characters have one thing in common and that is revenge for the love of a certain thing. The revenge of Iago was more towards the lust and hunger for wealth leaving behind all his relations while on the other hand Heathcliff’s revenge was also for love, but in the positive sense which didn’t harm the people who had caused him no damage. Here Iago’s revenge can be characterized as unfairness while Heathcliff’s revenge can be said justice to a certain extent.


Book Rags. Revenge (Othello Book Notes Summary. (2006)Retrieved on 14th December ‘2008 from:

Anonymous. Heathcliff the Revenger. (1997) Retrieved on 14th December ‘2008 from