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a serious play with an unhappy ending, especially the death or downfall of the main character. Aristotle gave the classic definition of tragedy. He said it represents an action that is serious and complete in itself. The tragic hero should be a good man of high rank, and he will be brought low, partly through circumstances beyond his control, and partly through a tragic flaw in his own character. The audience will experience pity for the suffering of this tragic hero and fear lest they should likewise be brought low. This experience results in catharsis or purification of the emotions. All Shakespeareâ??s tragedies conform to this pattern. In Othello, for instance, the hero is brought to the point of murdering the wife he loves deeply, because he is jealous and credulous and because Iago is evil. Many modern tragedies stretch the definition, however, e.g. in Millerâ??s Death of a Salesman, the tragic hero is of ordinary rank and experiences problems that many contemporary people feel.