Moliere's play Tartuffe is a comedy that was popular during the late 1600s. Moliere's comedy is a tale of dishonesty by a person who is regarded highly. The author portrays many characters with similar characteristics except for Tartuffe. Tartuffe exhibits the characteristics of a manipulator, a hypocrite, and arrogant individual.
Tartuffe manipulates Orgon in many ways to assume his money and possessions. "Tartuffe, much pleased to find so easy a victim, has in a hundred ways beguiled and tricked him, milked him of money, and with his permission established here a sort of Inquisition" (page 25). There is another aspect to the manipulation by Tartuffe of Argon's wife. Elmire has Orgon hiding under a table while Tartuffe is trying to seduce her. "If Heaven is all that holds you back, don't worry. I can remove that hindrance in a hurry. Nothing of that sort need to obstruct our path (page 57). .
Throughout the play, Tartuffe is a hypocrite. "In God's name, brother, don't be harsh with him I"d rather be tortured at the stake than see him bear one scratch for my poor sake" (page 48). Tartuffe wants Orgon to believe that he does not want Damis to suffer for lying to his father. "No, no, but my first duty is to serve my King. The obligation is so paramount that other claims beside it, do not count; and for it I would sacrifice my wife, my family, my friend, or my own life" (page 66). Tartuffe is using a public display of purity and holiness as a tool of lust and sin.
Arrogance is the most important characteristic that describes Tartuffe. He feels as though he can do whatever he wants and Orgon will never have a slight indication as to what he is doing. "Why worry about the man? Each day he grows more gullible; one can lead him by the nose. You find us here .
would fill him with delight, and if he saw the worst, he"d doubt his sight" (page 58). Tartuffe shows his arrogance in other ways. He acts as if he is better than other characters in the play as with Dorine.