Imatges de pàgina
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Shall ever medicine thee to that sweet sleep
Which thou ow'dst1 yesterday.


To me?

Ha ha! false to me?

Iago. Why, how now, general? No more of that.
Oth. Avaunt! be gone! thou hast set me on the

I swear 'tis better to be much abused,
Than but to know't a little.

How now, my lord?

Oth. What sense had I of her stolen hours of lust?
I saw it not, thought it not; it harmed not me;

I slept the next night well, was free and merry;

I found not Cassio's kisses on her lips.

He that is robbed, not wanting what is stolen,
Let him not know it, and he's not robbed at all.
Iago. I am sorry to hear this.


Cih. I had been happy, if the general camp,
Pioneers and all, had tasted her sweet body,
So I had nothing known. O, now, forever,
Farewell the tranquil mind! farewell content!
Farewell the plumed troop, and the big wars,
That make ambition virtue! O, farewell!
Farewell the neighing steed, and the shrill trump,
The spirit-stirring drum, the ear-piercing fife,
The royal banner; and all quality,

Pride, pomp, and circumstance of glorious war!
And, O you mortal engines, whose rude throats
The immortal Jove's dread clamors counterfeit,
Farewell! Othello's occupation's gone!
lago. Is it possible!-My lord,

Oth. Villain, be sure thou prove my love a whore;
Be sure of it; give me the ocular proof;

[Taking him by the throat.


Or, by the worth of mine eternal soul,3

Thou hadst been better have been born a dog,
Than answer my waked wrath.

1 i. e. possessed'st.

2 The vilest of the camp. Pioneers were generally degraded soldiers.
3 The quarto of 1522 reads, "man's eternal soul."

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Is it come to this?

Oth. Make me to see it; or (at the least) so prove it,

That the probation bear no hinge, nor loop,

To hang a doubt on; or, woe upon thy life!

Iago. My noble lord,

Oth. If thou dost slander her, and torture me, Never pray more; abandon all remorse;

On horror's head horrors accumulate;


Do deeds to make heaven weep, all earth amazed;
For nothing canst thou to damnation add,

Greater than that.


grace, O Heaven, defend me!

Are you a man? have you a soul, or sense?
God be wi' you; take mine office.-O wretched fool,
That liv'st to make thine honesty a vice!-

O monstrous world! Take note, take note, O world,
To be direct and honest, is not safe.-

I thank you for this profit; and, from hence,

I'll love no friend, since love breeds such offence.
Oth. Nay, stay.-Thou shouldst be honest.
Iago. I should be wise; for honesty's a fool,
And loses that it works for.

By the world,

I think my wife be honest, and think she is not;
I think that thou art just, and think thou art not;
I'll have some proof. Her name, that was as fresh
As Dian's visage, is now begrim'd and black
As mine own face. If there be cords, or knives,
Poison, or fire, or suffocating streams,

I'll not endure it.-'Would I were satisfied!

Iago. I see, sir, you are eaten up with passion. I do repent me that I put it to you.

You would be satisfied?


Would? nay,

I will.

Iago. And may; but, how? how satisfied, my lord? Would you, the supervisor, grossly gape on?

Behold her tupped?


Death and damnation! O!

Iago. It were a tedious difficulty, I think,

1 i. e. all tenderness of nature, all pity.

To bring them to that prospect. Damn them, then,
If ever mortal eyes do see them bolster,
More than their own! What then? how then?
What shall I say? Where's satisfaction?
It is impossible you should see this,


Were they as prime as goats, as hot as monkeys,
As salt as wolves in pride, and fools as gross
As ignorance made drunk. But yet, I say,
If imputation, and strong circumstances,-
Which lead directly to the door of truth,-
Will give you satisfaction, you may have it.
Oth. Give me a living 1 reason she's disloyal.
Iago. I do not like the office;
But, sith I am entered in this cause so far,-
Pricked to it by foolish honesty and love,-
I will go on. I lay with Cassio lately;
And, being troubled with a raging tooth,
I could not sleep.

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There are a kind of men so loose of soul,
That in their sleeps will mutter their affairs;
One of this kind is Cassio.

In sleep I heard him say,-Sweet Desdemona,
Let us be wary, let us hide our loves!

And then, sir, would he gripe and wring my hand,
Cry,-O sweet creature! and then kiss me hard,
As if he plucked up kisses by the roots,
That grew upon my ips; then laid his leg
Over my thigh, and sighed, and kissed; and then
Cried,-Cursed fate, that gave thee to the Moor!
Oth. O, monstrous! monstrous!


Nay, this was but his dream. Oth. But this denoted a foregone conclusion; 'Tis a shrewd doubt, though it be but a dream.3 Jago. And this may help to thicken other proofs, That do demonstrate thinly.

1 A living reason is a reason founded on fact and experience.

2 A foregone conclusion is some former experience. Conclusion is used

for experiment or trial in several other places of these plays.

3 The old quarto gives this line to Iago, as well as the two which follow; in the folio it is given to Othello.

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I'll tear her all to pieces.

Iago. Nay, but be wise; yet we see nothing done;
She may be honest yet. Tell me but this,—
Have you not sometimes seen a handkerchief,
Spotted with strawberries, in your wife's hand?
Oth. I gave her such a one; 'twas my first gift.
Iago. I know not that; but such a handkerchief
(I am sure it was your wife's) did I to-day
See Cassio wipe his beard with.

If it be that,-
Iago. If it be that, or any that was hers,
It speaks against her with the other proofs.
Oth. O that the slave had forty thousand lives;
One is too poor, too weak for my revenge!
Now do I see 'tis true.'-Look here, lago;
All my fond love thus do I blow to heaven.

'Tis gone.

Arise, black vengeance, from thy hollow cell!

Yield up, O love, thy crown, and hearted throne,2
To tyrannous hate! swell, bosom, with thy fraught; 3
For 'tis of aspics' tongues!

Iago. Pray, be content.


Iago. Patience, I say;


O blood, Iago, blood!

your mind, perhaps, may

Oth. Never, Iago. Like to the Pontic sea,
Whose icy current and compulsive course
Ne'er feels retiring ebb, but keeps due on
To the Propontic and the Hellespont;


Even so my bloody thoughts, with violent pace,
Shall ne'er look back, ne'er ebb to humble love,
Till that a capable and wide revenge


1 The quarto reads, "Now do I see 'tis tune.”

2 The heart on which thou wast enthroned.

3 i. e. swell, because the fraught thou art charged with is of poison. 4 From the word Like to marble heaven, inclusively, is not found in the quarto 1622. Pope thinks that it would be better omitted, as an unnatural excursion in this place. Shakspeare probably derived his knowl edge upon this subject from the second book and ninety-seventh chapter of Pliny's Natural History, 1601 :-" and the sea Pontus evermore floweth and runneth out into Propontis; but the sea never retireth backe againe within Pontus."

5 Capable seems to be here used for capacious, comprehensive.

Swallow them up.-Now, by yond' marble heaven,

In the due reverence of a sacred vow

I here engage my words.


Do not rise yet.


Witness, you ever-burning lights above!
You elements that clip us round about!
Witness, that here lago doth give up


The execution of his wit, hands, heart,

To wronged Othello's service! Let him command,
And to obey shall be in me remorse,

What bloody work soever.



I greet thy love,

Not with vain thanks, but with acceptance bounteous,
And will upon the instant put thee to't.

Within these three days let me hear thee say

That Cassio's not alive.

Iago. My friend is dead; 'tis done, at your request.
But let her live.

Damn her, lewd minx; O, damn her!
Come, go with me apart; I will withdraw
To furnish me with some swift means of death
For the fair devil. Now art thou my lieutenant.
Iago. I am your own forever.

SCENE IV. The same.


Enter DESDEMONA, EMILIA, and Clown.

Des. Do you know, sirrah, where lieutenant Cassio


Clo. I dare not say he lies. any where.

Des. Why, man?

1 The first quarto reads excellency. By execution Shakspeare meant employment or exercise.


2 Shakspeare always uses remorse for pity or commiseration. him command whatever bloody business, and in me it shall be an act not of cruelty but of pity or commiseration to obey him." The quarto reads, "What bloody business ever."

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