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The Complete Works of William Shakespeare The Tragedy of Othello, Moor of Venice

Part 2 out of 3

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OTHELLO. He did, from first to last. Why dost thou ask?
IAGO. But for a satisfaction of my thought;
No further harm.
OTHELLO. Why of thy thought, Iago?
IAGO. I did not think he had been acquainted with her.
OTHELLO. O, yes, and went between us very oft.
IAGO. Indeed!
OTHELLO. Indeed? ay, indeed. Discern'st thou aught in that?
Is he not honest?
IAGO. Honest, my lord?
OTHELLO. Honest? Ay, honest.
IAGO. My lord, for aught I know.
OTHELLO. What dost thou think?
IAGO. Think, my lord?
OTHELLO. Think, my lord? By heaven, he echoes me,
As if there were some monster in his thought
Too hideous to be shown. Thou dost mean something.
I heard thee say even now, thou like'st not that,
When Cassio left my wife. What didst not like?
And when I told thee he was of my counsel
In my whole course of wooing, thou criedst, "Indeed!"
And didst contract and purse thy brow together,
As if thou then hadst shut up in thy brain
Some horrible conceit. If thou dost love me,
Show me thy thought.
IAGO. My lord, you know I love you.
OTHELLO. I think thou dost;
And for I know thou'rt full of love and honesty
And weigh'st thy words before thou givest them breath,
Therefore these stops of thine fright me the more;
For such things in a false disloyal knave
Are tricks of custom; but in a man that's just
They're close dilations, working from the heart,
That passion cannot rule.
IAGO. For Michael Cassio,
I dare be sworn I think that he is honest.
OTHELLO. I think so too.
IAGO. Men should be what they seem;
Or those that be not, would they might seem none!
OTHELLO. Certain, men should be what they seem.
IAGO. Why then I think Cassio's an honest man.
OTHELLO. Nay, yet there's more in this.
I prithee, speak to me as to thy thinkings,
As thou dost ruminate, and give thy worst of thoughts
The worst of words.
IAGO. Good my lord, pardon me;
Though I am bound to every act of duty,
I am not bound to that all slaves are free to.
Utter my thoughts? Why, say they are vile and false;
As where's that palace whereinto foul things
Sometimes intrude not? Who has a breast so pure,
But some uncleanly apprehensions
Keep leets and law-days, and in session sit
With meditations lawful?
OTHELLO. Thou dost conspire against thy friend, Iago,
If thou but think'st him wrong'd and makest his ear
A stranger to thy thoughts.
IAGO. I do beseech you--
Though I perchance am vicious in my guess,
As, I confess, it is my nature's plague
To spy into abuses, and oft my jealousy
Shapes faults that are not--that your wisdom yet,
From one that so imperfectly conceits,
Would take no notice, nor build yourself a trouble
Out of his scattering and unsure observance.
It were not for your quiet nor your good,
Nor for my manhood, honesty, or wisdom,
To let you know my thoughts.
OTHELLO. What dost thou mean?
IAGO. Good name in man and woman, dear my lord,
Is the immediate jewel of their souls.
Who steals my purse steals trash; 'tis something, nothing;
'Twas mine, 'tis his, and has been slave to thousands;
But he that filches from me my good name
Robs me of that which not enriches him
And makes me poor indeed.
OTHELLO. By heaven, I'll know thy thoughts.
IAGO. You cannot, if my heart were in your hand;
Nor shall not, whilst 'tis in my custody.
IAGO. O, beware, my lord, of jealousy!
It is the green-eyed monster, which doth mock
The meat it feeds on. That cuckold lives in bliss
Who, certain of his fate, loves not his wronger;
But O, what damned minutes tells he o'er
Who dotes, yet doubts, suspects, yet strongly loves!
OTHELLO. O misery!
IAGO. Poor and content is rich, and rich enough;
But riches fineless is as poor as winter
To him that ever fears he shall be poor.
Good heaven, the souls of all my tribe defend
From jealousy!
OTHELLO. Why, why is this?
Think'st thou I'ld make a life of jealousy,
To follow still the changes of the moon
With fresh suspicions? No! To be once in doubt
Is once to be resolved. Exchange me for a goat
When I shall turn the business of my soul
To such exsufflicate and blown surmises,
Matching thy inference. 'Tis not to make me jealous
To say my wife is fair, feeds well, loves company,
Is free of speech, sings, plays, and dances well;
Where virtue is, these are more virtuous.
Nor from mine own weak merits will I draw
The smallest fear or doubt of her revolt;
For she had eyes and chose me. No, Iago,
I'll see before I doubt; when I doubt, prove;
And on the proof, there is no more but this--
Away at once with love or jealousy!
IAGO. I am glad of it, for now I shall have reason
To show the love and duty that I bear you
With franker spirit. Therefore, as I am bound,
Receive it from me. I speak not yet of proof.
Look to your wife; observe her well with Cassio;
Wear your eye thus, not jealous nor secure.
I would not have your free and noble nature
Out of self-bounty be abused. Look to't.
I know our country disposition well;
In Venice they do let heaven see the pranks
They dare not show their husbands; their best conscience
Is not to leave't undone, but keep't unknown.
OTHELLO. Dost thou say so?
IAGO. She did deceive her father, marrying you;
And when she seem'd to shake and fear your looks,
She loved them most.
OTHELLO. And so she did.
IAGO. Why, go to then.
She that so young could give out such a seeming,
To seal her father's eyes up close as oak--
He thought 'twas witchcraft--but I am much to blame;
I humbly do beseech you of your pardon
For too much loving you.
OTHELLO. I am bound to thee forever.
IAGO. I see this hath a little dash'd your spirits.
OTHELLO. Not a jot, not a jot.
IAGO. I'faith, I fear it has.
I hope you will consider what is spoke
Comes from my love. But I do see you're moved;
I am to pray you not to strain my speech
To grosser issues nor to larger reach
Than to suspicion.
OTHELLO. I will not.
IAGO. Should you do so, my lord,
My speech should fall into such vile success
Which my thoughts aim not at. Cassio's my worthy friend--
My lord, I see you're moved.
OTHELLO. No, not much moved.
I do not think but Desdemona's honest.
IAGO. Long live she so! and long live you to think so!
OTHELLO. And yet, how nature erring from itself--
IAGO. Ay, there's the point, as--to be bold with you--
Not to affect many proposed matches
Of her own clime, complexion, and degree,
Whereto we see in all things nature tends--
Foh, one may smell in such a will most rank,
Foul disproportion, thoughts unnatural.
But pardon me. I do not in position
Distinctly speak of her; though I may fear,
Her will, recoiling to her better judgement,
May fall to match you with her country forms,
And happily repent.
OTHELLO. Farewell, farewell.
If more thou dost perceive, let me know more;
Set on thy wife to observe. Leave me, Iago.
IAGO. [Going.] My lord, I take my leave.
OTHELLO. Why did I marry? This honest creature doubtless
Sees and knows more, much more, than he unfolds.
IAGO. [Returning.] My lord, I would I might entreat your honor
To scan this thing no further; leave it to time.
Though it be fit that Cassio have his place,
For sure he fills it up with great ability,
Yet, if you please to hold him off awhile,
You shall by that perceive him and his means.
Note if your lady strain his entertainment
With any strong or vehement importunity;
Much will be seen in that. In the meantime,
Let me be thought too busy in my fears--
As worthy cause I have to fear I am--
And hold her free, I do beseech your honor.
OTHELLO. Fear not my government.
IAGO. I once more take my leave.
OTHELLO. This fellow's of exceeding honesty,
And knows all qualities, with a learned spirit,
Of human dealings. If I do prove her haggard,
Though that her jesses were my dear heartstrings,
I'ld whistle her off and let her down the wind
To prey at fortune. Haply, for I am black
And have not those soft parts of conversation
That chamberers have, or for I am declined
Into the vale of years--yet that's not much--
She's gone. I am abused, and my relief
Must be to loathe her. O curse of marriage,
That we can call these delicate creatures ours,
And not their appetites! I had rather be a toad,
And live upon the vapor of a dungeon,
Than keep a corner in the thing I love
For others' uses. Yet, 'tis the plague of great ones:
Prerogatived are they less than the base;
'Tis destiny unshunnable, like death.
Even then this forked plague is fated to us
When we do quicken. Desdemona comes:

Re-enter Desdemona and Emilia.

If she be false, O, then heaven mocks itself!
I'll not believe't.
DESDEMONA. How now, my dear Othello!
Your dinner, and the generous islanders
By you invited, do attend your presence.
OTHELLO. I am to blame.
DESDEMONA. Why do you speak so faintly?
Are you not well?
OTHELLO. I have a pain upon my forehead here.
DESDEMONA. Faith, that's with watching; 'twill away again.
Let me but bind it hard, within this hour
It will be well.
OTHELLO. Your napkin is too little;
He puts the handkerchief from him, and she drops it.
Let it alone. Come, I'll go in with you.
DESDEMONA. I am very sorry that you are not well.
Exeunt Othello and
EMILIA. I am glad I have found this napkin;
This was her first remembrance from the Moor.
My wayward husband hath a hundred times
Woo'd me to steal it; but she so loves the token,
For he conjured her she should ever keep it,
That she reserves it evermore about her
To kiss and talk to. I'll have the work ta'en out,
And give't Iago. What he will do with it
Heaven knows, not I;
I nothing but to please his fantasy.

Re-enter Iago.

IAGO. How now, what do you here alone?
EMILIA. Do not you chide; I have a thing for you.
IAGO. A thing for me? It is a common thing--
IAGO. To have a foolish wife.
EMILIA. O, is that all? What will you give me now
For that same handkerchief?
IAGO. What handkerchief?
EMILIA. What handkerchief?
Why, that the Moor first gave to Desdemona,
That which so often you did bid me steal.
IAGO. Hast stol'n it from her?
EMILIA. No, faith; she let it drop by negligence,
And, to the advantage, I being here took't up.
Look, here it is.
IAGO. A good wench; give it me.
EMILIA. What will you do with't, that you have been so earnest
To have me filch it?
IAGO. [Snatching it.] Why, what is that to you?
EMILIA. If't be not for some purpose of import,
Give't me again. Poor lady, she'll run mad
When she shall lack it.
IAGO. Be not acknown on't; I have use for it.
Go, leave me. Exit
I will in Cassio's lodging lose this napkin,
And let him find it. Trifles light as air
Are to the jealous confirmations strong
As proofs of holy writ; this may do something.
The Moor already changes with my poison:
Dangerous conceits are in their natures poisons,
Which at the first are scarce found to distaste,
But with a little act upon the blood
Burn like the mines of sulphur. I did say so.
Look, where he comes!

Re-enter Othello.

Not poppy, nor mandragora,
Nor all the drowsy syrups of the world,
Shall ever medicine thee to that sweet sleep
Which thou owedst yesterday.
OTHELLO. Ha, ha, false to me?
IAGO. Why, how now, general! No more of that.
OTHELLO. Avaunt! be gone! Thou hast set me on the rack.
I swear 'tis better to be much abused
Than but to know't a little.
IAGO. How now, my lord?
OTHELLO. What sense had I of her stol'n hours of lust?
I saw't not, thought it not, it harm'd not me;
I slept the next night well, was free and merry;
I found not Cassio's kisses on her lips.
He that is robb'd, not wanting what is stol'n,
Let him not know't and he's not robb'd at all.
IAGO. I am sorry to hear this.
OTHELLO. I had been happy if the general camp,
Pioners 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!
IAGO. Is't possible, my lord?
OTHELLO. Villain, be sure thou prove my love a whore;
Be sure of it. Give me the ocular proof;
Or, by the worth of man's eternal soul,
Thou hadst been better have been born a dog
Than answer my waked wrath!
IAGO. Is't come to this?
OTHELLO. Make me to see't; 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--
OTHELLO. 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.
IAGO. O 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 livest 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 sith love breeds such offense.
OTHELLO. Nay, stay; thou shouldst be honest.
IAGO. I should be wise; for honesty's a fool,
And loses that it works for.
OTHELLO. 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 begrimed 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?
OTHELLO. Would? Nay, I will.
IAGO. And may. But, how? how satisfied, my lord?
Would you, the supervisor, grossly gape on?
Behold her topp'd?
OTHELLO. Death and damnation! O!
IAGO. It were a tedious difficulty, I think,
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't.
OTHELLO. Give me a living reason she's disloyal.
IAGO. I do not like the office;
But sith I am enter'd in this cause so far,
Prick'd to't 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.
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 pluck'd up kisses by the roots,
That grew upon my lips; then laid his leg
Over my thigh, and sigh'd and kiss'd; and then
Cried, "Cursed fate that gave thee to the Moor!"
OTHELLO. O monstrous! monstrous!
IAGO. Nay, this was but his dream.
OTHELLO. But this denoted a foregone conclusion.
'Tis a shrewd doubt, though it be but a dream.
IAGO. And this may help to thicken other proofs
That do demonstrate thinly.
OTHELLO. 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?
OTHELLO. 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 today
See Cassio wipe his beard with.
OTHELLO. If it be that--
IAGO. If it be that, or any that was hers,
It speaks against her with the other proofs.
OTHELLO. 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, Iago,
All my fond love thus do I blow to heaven.
'Tis gone.
Arise, black vengeance, from thy hollow hell!
Yield up, O love, thy crown and hearted throne
To tyrannous hate! Swell, bosom, with thy fraught,
For 'tis of aspics' tongues!
IAGO. Yet be content.
OTHELLO. O, blood, blood, blood!
IAGO. Patience, I say; your mind perhaps may change.
OTHELLO. 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
Swallow them up. Now, by yond marble heaven,
In the due reverence of a sacred vow
I here engage my words.
IAGO. Do not rise yet.
Witness, you ever-burning lights above,
You elements that clip us round about,
Witness that here Iago doth give up
The execution of his wit, hands, heart,
To wrong'd Othello's service! Let him command,
And to obey shall be in me remorse,
What bloody business ever. They
OTHELLO. 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.
OTHELLO. 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.

Before the castle.

Enter Desdemona, Emilia, and Clown.

DESDEMONA. Do you know, sirrah, where Lieutenant Cassio lies?
CLOWN. I dare not say he lies anywhere.
DESDEMONA. Why, man?
CLOWN. He's a soldier; and for one to say a soldier lies, is
DESDEMONA. Go to! Where lodges he?
CLOWN. To tell you where he lodges, is to tell you where I lie.
DESDEMONA. Can anything be made of this?
CLOWN. I know not where he lodges, and for me to devise a
and say he lies here or he lies there, were to lie in mine
DESDEMONA. Can you inquire him out and be edified by report?
CLOWN. I will catechize the world for him; that is, make
and by them answer.
DESDEMONA. Seek him, bid him come hither. Tell him I have moved
lord on his behalf and hope all will be well.
CLOWN. To do this is within the compass of man's wit, and
I will attempt the doing it.
DESDEMONA. Where should I lose that handkerchief, Emilia?
EMILIA. I know not, madam.
DESDEMONA. Believe me, I had rather have lost my purse
Full of crusadoes; and, but my noble Moor
Is true of mind and made of no such baseness
As jealous creatures are, it were enough
To put him to ill thinking.
EMILIA. Is he not jealous?
DESDEMONA. Who, he? I think the sun where he was born
Drew all such humors from him.
EMILIA. Look, where he comes.
DESDEMONA. I will not leave him now till Cassio
Be call'd to him.

Enter Othello.

How is't with you, my lord?
OTHELLO. Well, my good lady. [Aside.] O, hardness to dissemble!
How do you, Desdemona?
DESDEMONA. Well, my good lord.
OTHELLO. Give me your hand. This hand is moist, my lady.
DESDEMONA. It yet has felt no age nor known no sorrow.
OTHELLO. This argues fruitfulness and liberal heart;
Hot, hot, and moist. This hand of yours requires
A sequester from liberty, fasting, and prayer,
Much castigation, exercise devout,
For here's a young and sweating devil here
That commonly rebels. 'Tis a good hand,
A frank one.
DESDEMONA. You may, indeed, say so;
For 'twas that hand that gave away my heart.
OTHELLO. A liberal hand. The hearts of old gave hands;
But our new heraldry is hands, not hearts.
DESDEMONA. I cannot speak of this. Come now, your promise.
OTHELLO. What promise, chuck?
DESDEMONA. I have sent to bid Cassio come speak with you.
OTHELLO. I have a salt and sorry rheum offends me;
Lend me thy handkerchief.
DESDEMONA. Here, my lord.
OTHELLO. That which I gave you.
DESDEMONA. I have it not about me.
DESDEMONA. No, faith, my lord.
OTHELLO. That's a fault. That handkerchief
Did an Egyptian to my mother give;
She was a charmer, and could almost read
The thoughts of people. She told her, while she kept it,
'Twould make her amiable and subdue my father
Entirely to her love, but if she lost it
Or made a gift of it, my father's eye
Should hold her loathed and his spirits should hunt
After new fancies. She dying gave it me,
And bid me, when my fate would have me wive,
To give it her. I did so, and take heed on't;
Make it a darling like your precious eye;
To lose't or give't away were such perdition
As nothing else could match.
DESDEMONA. Is't possible?
OTHELLO. 'Tis true; there's magic in the web of it.
A sibyl, that had number'd in the world
The sun to course two hundred compasses,
In her prophetic fury sew'd the work;
The worms were hallow'd that did breed the silk,
And it was dyed in mummy which the skillful
Conserved of maiden's hearts.
DESDEMONA. Indeed! is't true?
OTHELLO. Most veritable; therefore look to't well.
DESDEMONA. Then would to God that I had never seen't!
OTHELLO. Ha! wherefore?
DESDEMONA. Why do you speak so startingly and rash?
OTHELLO. Is't lost? is't gone? speak, is it out o' the way?
DESDEMONA. Heaven bless us!
OTHELLO. Say you?
DESDEMONA. It is not lost; but what an if it were?
DESDEMONA. I say, it is not lost.
OTHELLO. Fetch't, let me see it.
DESDEMONA. Why, so I can, sir, but I will not now.
This is a trick to put me from my suit.
Pray you, let Cassio be received again.
OTHELLO. Fetch me the handkerchief, my mind misgives.
DESDEMONA. Come, come,
You'll never meet a more sufficient man.
OTHELLO. The handkerchief!
DESDEMONA. I pray, talk me of Cassio.
OTHELLO. The handkerchief!
DESDEMONA. A man that all his time
Hath founded his good fortunes on your love,
Shared dangers with you--
OTHELLO. The handkerchief!
DESDEMONA. In sooth, you are to blame.
EMILIA. Is not this man jealous?
DESDEMONA. I ne'er saw this before.
Sure there's some wonder in this handkerchief;
I am most unhappy in the loss of it.
EMILIA. 'Tis not a year or two shows us a man.
They are all but stomachs and we all but food;
They eat us hungerly, and when they are full
They belch us. Look you! Cassio and my husband.

Enter Cassio and Iago.

IAGO. There is no other way; 'tis she must do't.
And, lo, the happiness! Go and importune her.
DESDEMONA. How now, good Cassio! What's the news with you?
CASSIO. Madam, my former suit: I do beseech you
That by your virtuous means I may again
Exist and be a member of his love
Whom I with all the office of my heart
Entirely honor. I would not be delay'd.
If my offense be of such mortal kind
That nor my service past nor present sorrows
Nor purposed merit in futurity
Can ransom me into his love again,
But to know so must be my benefit;
So shall I clothe me in a forced content
And shut myself up in some other course
To Fortune's alms.
DESDEMONA. Alas, thrice-gentle Cassio!
My advocation is not now in tune;
My lord is not my lord, nor should I know him
Were he in favor as in humor alter'd.
So help me every spirit sanctified,
As I have spoken for you all my best
And stood within the blank of his displeasure
For my free speech! You must awhile be patient.
What I can do I will; and more I will
Than for myself I dare. Let that suffice you.
IAGO. Is my lord angry?
EMILIA. He went hence but now,
And certainly in strange unquietness.
IAGO. Can he be angry? I have seen the cannon,
When it hath blown his ranks into the air
And, like the devil, from his very arm
Puff'd his own brother. And can he be angry?
Something of moment then. I will go meet him.
There's matter in't indeed if he be angry.
DESDEMONA. I prithee, do so. Exit
Something sure of state,
Either from Venice or some unhatch'd practice
Made demonstrable here in Cyprus to him,
Hath puddled his clear spirit; and in such cases
Men's natures wrangle with inferior things,
Though great ones are their object. 'Tis even so;
For let our finger ache, and it indues
Our other healthful members even to that sense
Of pain. Nay, we must think men are not gods,
Nor of them look for such observancy
As fits the bridal. Beshrew me much, Emilia,
I was, unhandsome warrior as I am,
Arraigning his unkindness with my soul;
But now I find I had suborn'd the witness,
And he's indicted falsely.
EMILIA. Pray heaven it be state matters, as you think,
And no conception nor no jealous toy
Concerning you.
DESDEMONA. Alas the day, I never gave him cause!
EMILIA. But jealous souls will not be answer'd so;
They are not ever jealous for the cause,
But jealous for they are jealous. 'Tis a monster
Begot upon itself, born on itself.
DESDEMONA. Heaven keep that monster from Othello's mind!
EMILIA. Lady, amen.
DESDEMONA. I will go seek him. Cassio, walk hereabout.
If I do find him fit, I'll move your suit,
And seek to effect it to my uttermost.
CASSIO. I humbly thank your ladyship.
Exeunt Desdemona and

Enter Bianca.

BIANCA. Save you, friend Cassio!
CASSIO. What make you from home?
How is it with you, my most fair Bianca?
I'faith, sweet love, I was coming to your house.
BIANCA. And I was going to your lodging, Cassio.
What, keep a week away? seven days and nights?
Eight score eight hours? and lovers' absent hours,
More tedious than the dial eight score times?
O weary reckoning!
CASSIO. Pardon me, Bianca.
I have this while with leaden thoughts been press'd;
But I shall in a more continuate time
Strike off this score of absence. Sweet Bianca,
Gives her Desdemona's
Take me this work out.
BIANCA. O Cassio, whence came this?
This is some token from a newer friend.
To the felt absence now I feel a cause.
Is't come to this? Well, well.
CASSIO. Go to, woman!
Throw your vile guesses in the devil's teeth,
From whence you have them. You are jealous now
That this is from some mistress, some remembrance.
No, by my faith, Bianca.
BIANCA. Why, whose is it?
CASSIO. I know not, sweet. I found it in my chamber.
I like the work well. Ere it be demanded--
As like enough it will--I'ld have it copied.
Take it, and do't; and leave me for this time.
BIANCA. Leave you! wherefore?
CASSIO. I do attend here on the general;
And think it no addition, nor my wish,
To have him see me woman'd.
BIANCA. Why, I pray you?
CASSIO. Not that I love you not.
BIANCA. But that you do not love me.
I pray you, bring me on the way a little,
And say if I shall see you soon at night.
CASSIO. 'Tis but a little way that I can bring you,
For I attend here, but I'll see you soon.
BIANCA. 'Tis very good; I must be circumstanced.


Cyprus. Before the castle.

Enter Othello and Iago.

IAGO. Will you think so?
OTHELLO. Think so, Iago?
IAGO. What,
To kiss in private?
OTHELLO. An unauthorized kiss.
IAGO. Or to be naked with her friend in bed
An hour or more, not meaning any harm?
OTHELLO. Naked in bed, Iago, and not mean harm!
It is hypocrisy against the devil.
They that mean virtuously and yet do so,
The devil their virtue tempts and they tempt heaven.
IAGO. So they do nothing, 'tis a venial slip.
But if I give my wife a handkerchief--
OTHELLO. What then?
IAGO. Why, then, 'tis hers, my lord, and being hers,
She may, I think, bestow't on any man.
OTHELLO. She is protectress of her honor too.
May she give that?
IAGO. Her honor is an essence that's not seen;
They have it very oft that have it not.
But for the handkerchief--
OTHELLO. By heaven, I would most gladly have forgot it.
Thou said'st--O, it comes o'er my memory,
As doth the raven o'er the infected house,
Boding to all--he had my handkerchief.
IAGO. Ay, what of that?
OTHELLO. That's not so good now.
IAGO. What,
If I had said I had seen him do you wrong?
Or heard him say--as knaves be such abroad,
Who having, by their own importunate suit,
Or voluntary dotage of some mistress,
Convinced or supplied them, cannot choose
But they must blab--
OTHELLO. Hath he said anything?
IAGO. He hath, my lord; but be you well assured,
No more than he'll unswear.
OTHELLO. What hath he said?
IAGO. Faith, that he did--I know not what he did.
OTHELLO. What? what?
IAGO. Lie--
OTHELLO. With her?
IAGO. With her, on her, what you will.
OTHELLO. Lie with her! lie on her! We say lie on her, when they
belie her. Lie with her! 'Zounds, that's fulsome!
confessions--handkerchief! To confess and be hanged for his
first, to be hanged, and then to confess. I tremble at it.
Nature would not invest herself in such shadowing passion
some instruction. It is not words that shakes me thus. Pish!
Noses, ears, and lips. Is't possible? Confess? Handkerchief?
Falls in a
IAGO. Work on,
My medicine, work! Thus credulous fools are caught,
And many worthy and chaste dames even thus,
All guiltless, meet reproach. What, ho! My lord!
My lord, I say! Othello!

Enter Cassio.

How now, Cassio!
CASSIO. What's the matter?
IAGO. My lord is fall'n into an epilepsy.
This is his second fit; he had one yesterday.
CASSIO. Rub him about the temples.
IAGO. No, forbear;
The lethargy must have his quiet course.
If not, he foams at mouth, and by and by
Breaks out to savage madness. Look, he stirs.
Do you withdraw yourself a little while,
He will recover straight. When he is gone,
I would on great occasion speak with you. Exit
How is it, general? Have you not hurt your head?
OTHELLO. Dost thou mock me?
IAGO. I mock you? No, by heaven.
Would you would bear your fortune like a man!
OTHELLO. A horned man's a monster and a beast.
IAGO. There's many a beast then in a populous city,
And many a civil monster.
OTHELLO. Did he confess it?
IAGO. Good sir, be a man;
Think every bearded fellow that's but yoked
May draw with you. There's millions now alive
That nightly lie in those unproper beds
Which they dare swear peculiar. Your case is better.
O, 'tis the spite of hell, the fiend's arch-mock,
To lip a wanton in a secure couch,
And to suppose her chaste! No, let me know,
And knowing what I am, I know what she shall be.
OTHELLO. O, thou art wise; 'tis certain.
IAGO. Stand you awhile
Confine yourself but in a patient list.
Whilst you were here o'erwhelmed with your grief--
A passion most unsuiting such a man--
Cassio came hither. I shifted him away,
And laid good 'scuse upon your ecstasy;
Bade him anon return and here speak with me
The which he promised. Do but encave yourself
And mark the fleers, the gibes, and notable scorns,
That dwell in every region of his face;
For I will make him tell the tale anew,
Where, how, how oft, how long ago, and when
He hath and is again to cope your wife.
I say, but mark his gesture. Marry, patience,
Or I shall say you are all in all in spleen,
And nothing of a man.
OTHELLO. Dost thou hear, Iago?
I will be found most cunning in my patience;
But (dost thou hear?) most bloody.
IAGO. That's not amiss;
But yet keep time in all. Will you withdraw?
Now will I question Cassio of Bianca,
A housewife that by selling her desires
Buys herself bread and clothes. It is a creature
That dotes on Cassio, as 'tis the strumpet's plague
To beguile many and be beguiled by one.
He, when he hears of her, cannot refrain
From the excess of laughter. Here he comes.

Re-enter Cassio.

As he shall smile, Othello shall go mad;
And his unbookish jealousy must construe
Poor Cassio's smiles, gestures, and light behavior
Quite in the wrong. How do you now, lieutenant?
CASSIO. The worser that you give me the addition
Whose want even kills me.
IAGO. Ply Desdemona well, and you are sure on't.
Now, if this suit lay in Bianca's power,
How quickly should you speed!
CASSIO. Alas, poor caitiff!
OTHELLO. Look, how he laughs already!
IAGO. I never knew a woman love man so.
CASSIO. Alas, poor rogue! I think, i'faith, she loves me.
OTHELLO. Now he denies it faintly and laughs it out.
IAGO. Do you hear, Cassio?
OTHELLO. Now he importunes him
To tell it o'er. Go to; well said, well said.
IAGO. She gives it out that you shall marry her.
Do you intend it?
CASSIO. Ha, ha, ha!
OTHELLO. Do you triumph, Roman? Do you triumph?
CASSIO. I marry her! What? A customer! I prithee, bear some
to my wit; do not think it so unwholesome. Ha, ha, ha!
OTHELLO. So, so, so, so. They laugh that win.
IAGO. Faith, the cry goes that you shall marry her.
CASSIO. Prithee, say true.
IAGO. I am a very villain else.
OTHELLO. Have you scored me? Well.
CASSIO. This is the monkey's own giving out. She is persuaded I
will marry her, out of her own love and flattery, not out of
OTHELLO. Iago beckons me; now he begins the story.
CASSIO. She was here even now; she haunts me in every place. I
the other day talking on the sea bank with certain Venetians,
thither comes the bauble, and, by this hand, she falls me
about my neck--
OTHELLO. Crying, "O dear Cassio!" as it were; his gesture
CASSIO. So hangs and lolls and weeps upon me; so hales and
me. Ha, ha, ha!
OTHELLO. Now he tells how she plucked him to my chamber. O, I
that nose of yours, but not that dog I shall throw it to.
CASSIO. Well, I must leave her company.
IAGO. Before me! look where she comes.
CASSIO. 'Tis such another fitchew! marry, a perfumed one.

Enter Bianca.

What do you mean by this haunting of me?
BIANCA. Let the devil and his dam haunt you! What did you mean by that same handkerchief you gave me even now? I was a fine
fool to
take it. I must take out the work? A likely piece of work
you should find it in your chamber and not know who left it
there! This is some minx's token, and I must take out the
There, give it your hobbyhorse. Wheresoever you had it, I'll
out no work on't.
CASSIO. How now, my sweet Bianca! how now! how now!
OTHELLO. By heaven, that should be my handkerchief!
BIANCA. An you'll come to supper tonight, you may; an you will
come when you are next prepared for.
IAGO. After her, after her.
CASSIO. Faith, I must; she'll rail i' the street else.
IAGO. Will you sup there?
CASSIO. Faith, I intend so.
IAGO. Well, I may chance to see you, for I would very fain
with you.
CASSIO. Prithee, come; will you?
IAGO. Go to; say no more. Exit
OTHELLO. [Advancing.] How shall I murther him, Iago?
IAGO. Did you perceive how he laughed at his vice?
IAGO. And did you see the handkerchief?
OTHELLO. Was that mine?
IAGO. Yours, by this hand. And to see how he prizes the foolish
woman your wife! She gave it him, and he hath given it his
OTHELLO. I would have him nine years akilling. A fine woman! a
woman! a sweet woman!
IAGO. Nay, you must forget that.
OTHELLO. Ay, let her rot, and perish, and be damned tonight,
she shall not live. No, my heart is turned to stone; I strike
and it hurts my hand. O, the world hath not a sweeter
She might lie by an emperor's side, and command him tasks.
IAGO. Nay, that's not your way.
OTHELLO. Hang her! I do but say what she is. So delicate with
needle, an admirable musician. O, she will sing the
out of a bear. Of so high and plenteous wit and invention--
IAGO. She's the worse for all this.
OTHELLO. O, a thousand, a thousand times. And then, of so
gentle a
IAGO. Ay, too gentle.
OTHELLO. Nay, that's certain. But yet the pity of it, Iago!
O Iago, the pity of it, Iago!
IAGO. If you are so fond over her iniquity, give her patent to
offend, for, if it touch not you, it comes near nobody.
OTHELLO. I will chop her into messes. Cuckold me!
IAGO. O, 'tis foul in her.
OTHELLO. With mine officer!
IAGO. That's fouler.
OTHELLO. Get me some poison, Iago, this night. I'll not
with her, lest her body and beauty unprovide my mind again.
night, Iago.
IAGO. Do it not with poison, strangle her in her bed, even the
she hath contaminated.
OTHELLO. Good, good, the justice of it pleases, very good.
IAGO. And for Cassio, let me be his undertaker. You shall hear
by midnight.
OTHELLO. Excellent good. [A trumpet within.] What trumpet is
IAGO. Something from Venice, sure. 'Tis Lodovico
Come from the Duke. And, see your wife is with him.

Enter Lodovico, Desdemona, and Attendants.

LODOVICO. God save the worthy general!
OTHELLO. With all my heart, sir.
LODOVICO. The Duke and Senators of Venice greet you.
Gives him a
OTHELLO. I kiss the instrument of their pleasures.
Opens the letter, and
DESDEMONA. And what's the news, good cousin Lodovico?
IAGO. I am very glad to see you, signior;
Welcome to Cyprus.
LODOVICO. I thank you. How does Lieutenant Cassio?
IAGO. Lives, sir.
DESDEMONA. Cousin, there's fall'n between him and my lord
An unkind breach; but you shall make all well.
OTHELLO. Are you sure of that?
OTHELLO. [Reads.] "This fail you not to do, as you will--"
LODOVICO. He did not call; he's busy in the paper.
Is there division 'twixt my lord and Cassio?
DESDEMONA. A most unhappy one. I would do much
To atone them, for the love I bear to Cassio.
OTHELLO. Fire and brimstone!
OTHELLO. Are you wise?
DESDEMONA. What, is he angry?
LODOVICO. May be the letter moved him;
For, as I think, they do command him home,
Deputing Cassio in his government.
DESDEMONA. By my troth, I am glad on't.
OTHELLO. Indeed!
OTHELLO. I am glad to see you mad.
DESDEMONA. Why, sweet Othello?
OTHELLO. Devil! Strikes
DESDEMONA. I have not deserved this.
LODOVICO. My lord, this would not be believed in Venice,
Though I should swear I saw't. 'Tis very much.
Make her amends; she weeps.
OTHELLO. O devil, devil!
If that the earth could teem with woman's tears,
Each drop she falls would prove a crocodile.
Out of my sight!
DESDEMONA. [Going.] I will not stay to offend you.
LODOVICO. Truly, an obedient lady.
I do beseech your lordship, call her back.
OTHELLO. Mistress!
OTHELLO. What would you with her, sir?
LODOVICO. Who, I, my lord?
OTHELLO. Ay, you did wish that I would make her turn.
Sir, she can turn and turn, and yet go on,
And turn again; and she can weep, sir, weep;
And she's obedient, as you say, obedient,
Very obedient. Proceed you in your tears.
Concerning this, sir--O well-painted passion!--
I am commanded home. Get you away;
I'll send for you anon. Sir, I obey the mandate,
And will return to Venice. Hence, avaunt!
Cassio shall have my place. And, sir, tonight,
I do entreat that we may sup together.
You are welcome, sir, to Cyprus. Goats and monkeys!
LODOVICO. Is this the noble Moor whom our full Senate
Call all in all sufficient? This the nature
Whom passion could not shake? whose solid virtue
The shot of accident nor dart of chance
Could neither graze nor pierce?
IAGO. He is much changed.
LODOVICO. Are his wits safe? Is he not light of brain?
IAGO. He's that he is. I may not breathe my censure
What he might be: if what he might he is not,
I would to heaven he were!
LODOVICO. What, strike his wife!
IAGO. Faith, that was not so well; yet would I knew
That stroke would prove the worst!
LODOVICO. Is it his use?
Or did the letters work upon his blood,
And new create this fault?
IAGO. Alas, alas!
It is not honesty in me to speak
What I have seen and known. You shall observe him,
And his own courses will denote him so
That I may save my speech. Do but go after,
And mark how he continues.
LODOVICO. I am sorry that I am deceived in him.

A room in the castle.

Enter Othello and Emilia.

OTHELLO. You have seen nothing, then?
EMILIA. Nor ever heard, nor ever did suspect.
OTHELLO. Yes, you have seen Cassio and she together.
EMILIA. But then I saw no harm, and then I heard
Each syllable that breath made up between them.
OTHELLO. What, did they never whisper?
EMILIA. Never, my lord.
OTHELLO. Nor send you out o' the way?
EMILIA. Never.
OTHELLO. To fetch her fan, her gloves, her mask, nor nothing?
EMILIA. Never, my lord.
OTHELLO. That's strange.
EMILIA. I durst, my lord, to wager she is honest,
Lay down my soul at stake. If you think other,
Remove your thought; it doth abuse your bosom.
If any wretch have put this in your head,
Let heaven requite it with the serpent's curse!
For if she be not honest, chaste, and true,
There's no man happy; the purest of their wives
Is foul as slander.
OTHELLO. Bid her come hither; go. Exit
She says enough; yet she's a simple bawd
That cannot say as much. This is a subtle whore,
A closet lock and key of villainous secrets.
And yet she'll kneel and pray; I have seen her do't.

Enter Desdemona with Emilia.

DESDEMONA. My lord, what is your will?
OTHELLO. Pray, chuck, come
DESDEMONA. What is your pleasure?
OTHELLO. Let me see your eyes;
Look in my face.
DESDEMONA. What horrible fancy's this?
OTHELLO. [To Emilia.] Some of your function, mistress,
Leave procreants alone and shut the door;
Cough, or cry "hem," if anybody come.
Your mystery, your mystery; nay, dispatch. Exit
DESDEMONA. Upon my knees, what doth your speech import?
I understand a fury in your words,
But not the words.
OTHELLO. Why, what art thou?
DESDEMONA. Your wife, my lord, your true and loyal wife.
OTHELLO. Come, swear it, damn thyself;
Lest, being like one of heaven, the devils themselves
Should fear to seize thee. Therefore be double-damn'd;
Swear thou art honest.
DESDEMONA. Heaven doth truly know it.
OTHELLO. Heaven truly knows that thou art false as hell.
DESDEMONA. To whom, my lord? with whom? how am I false?
OTHELLO. O Desdemona! Away! away! away!
DESDEMONA. Alas the heavy day! Why do you weep?
Am I the motive of these tears, my lord?
If haply you my father do suspect
An instrument of this your calling back,
Lay not your blame on me. If you have lost him,
Why, I have lost him too.
OTHELLO. Had it pleased heaven
To try me with affliction, had they rain'd
All kinds of sores and shames on my bare head,
Steep'd me in poverty to the very lips,
Given to captivity me and my utmost hopes,
I should have found in some place of my soul
A drop of patience; but, alas, to make me
A fixed figure for the time for scorn
To point his slow unmoving finger at!
Yet could I bear that too, well, very well;
But there, where I have garner'd up my heart,
Where either I must live or bear no life;
The fountain from the which my current runs,
Or else dries up; to be discarded thence!
Or keep it as a cistern for foul toads
To knot and gender in! Turn thy complexion there,
Patience, thou young and rose-lipp'd cherubin,
Ay, there, look grim as hell!
DESDEMONA. I hope my noble lord esteems me honest.
OTHELLO. O, ay, as summer flies are in the shambles,
That quicken even with blowing. O thou weed,
Who art so lovely fair and smell'st so sweet
That the sense aches at thee, would thou hadst ne'er been
DESDEMONA. Alas, what ignorant sin have I committed?
OTHELLO. Was this fair paper, this most goodly book,
Made to write "whore" upon? What committed?
Committed? O thou public commoner!
I should make very forges of my cheeks,
That would to cinders burn up modesty,
Did I but speak thy deeds. What committed!
Heaven stops the nose at it, and the moon winks;
The bawdy wind, that kisses all it meets,
Is hush'd within the hollow mine of earth,
And will not hear it. What committed?
Impudent strumpet!
DESDEMONA. By heaven, you do me wrong.
OTHELLO. Are not you a strumpet?
DESDEMONA. No, as I am a Christian.
If to preserve this vessel for my lord
From any other foul unlawful touch
Be not to be a strumpet, I am none.
OTHELLO. What, not a whore?
DESDEMONA. No, as I shall be saved.
OTHELLO. Is't possible?
DESDEMONA. O, heaven forgive us!
OTHELLO. I cry you mercy then;
I took you for that cunning whore of Venice
That married with Othello. [Raises his voice.] You, mistress,
That have the office opposite to Saint Peter,
And keep the gate of hell!

Re-enter Emilia.

You, you, ay, you!
We have done our course; there's money for your pains.
I pray you, turn the key, and keep our counsel.
EMILIA. Alas, what does this gentleman conceive?
How do you, madam? How do you, my good lady?
DESDEMONA. Faith, half asleep.
EMILIA. Good madam, what's the matter with my lord?
DESDEMONA. With who?
EMILIA. Why, with my lord, madam.
DESDEMONA. Who is thy lord?
EMILIA. He that is yours, sweet lady.
DESDEMONA. I have none. Do not talk to me, Emilia;
I cannot weep, nor answer have I none
But what should go by water. Prithee, tonight
Lay on my bed my wedding sheets. Remember,
And call thy husband hither.
EMILIA. Here's a change indeed!
DESDEMONA. 'Tis meet I should be used so, very meet.
How have I been behaved, that he might stick
The small'st opinion on my least misuse?

Re-enter Emilia with Iago.

IAGO. What is your pleasure, madam? How is't with you?
DESDEMONA. I cannot tell. Those that do teach young babes
Do it with gentle means and easy tasks.
He might have chid me so, for in good faith,
I am a child to chiding.
IAGO. What's the matter, lady?
EMILIA. Alas, Iago, my lord hath so bewhored her,
Thrown such despite and heavy terms upon her,
As true hearts cannot bear.
DESDEMONA. Am I that name, Iago?
IAGO. What name, fair lady?
DESDEMONA. Such as she says my lord did say I was.
EMILIA. He call'd her whore; a beggar in his drink
Could not have laid such terms upon his callet.
IAGO. Why did he so?
DESDEMONA. I do not know; I am sure I am none such.
IAGO. Do not weep, do not weep. Alas the day!
EMILIA. Hath she forsook so many noble matches,
Her father and her country and her friends,
To be call'd whore? Would it not make one weep?
DESDEMONA. It is my wretched fortune.
IAGO. Beshrew him for't!
How comes this trick upon him?
DESDEMONA. Nay, heaven doth know.
EMILIA. I will be hang'd, if some eternal villain,
Some busy and insinuating rogue,
Some cogging, cozening slave, to get some office,
Have not devised this slander; I'll be hang'd else.
IAGO. Fie, there is no such man; it is impossible.
DESDEMONA. If any such there be, heaven pardon him!
EMILIA. A halter pardon him! And hell gnaw his bones!
Why should he call her whore? Who keeps her company?
What place? What time? What form? What likelihood?
The Moor's abused by some most villainous knave,
Some base notorious knave, some scurvy fellow.
O heaven, that such companions thou'ldst unfold,
And put in every honest hand a whip
To lash the rascals naked through the world
Even from the east to the west!
IAGO. Speak within door.
EMILIA. O, fie upon them! Some such squire he was
That turn'd your wit the seamy side without,
And made you to suspect me with the Moor.
IAGO. You are a fool; go to.
DESDEMONA. O good Iago,
What shall I do to win my lord again?
Good friend, go to him, for by this light of heaven,
I know not how I lost him. Here I kneel:
If e'er my will did trespass 'gainst his love
Either in discourse of thought or actual deed,
Or that mine eyes, mine ears, or any sense,
Delighted them in any other form,
Or that I do not yet, and ever did,
And ever will, though he do shake me off
To beggarly divorcement, love him dearly,
Comfort forswear me! Unkindness may do much,
And his unkindness may defeat my life,
But never taint my love. I cannot say "whore."
It doth abhor me now I speak the word;
To do the act that might the addition earn
Not the world's mass of vanity could make me.
IAGO. I pray you, be content; 'tis but his humor:
The business of the state does him offense,
And he does chide with you.
DESDEMONA. If 'twere no other--
IAGO. 'Tis but so, I warrant. Trumpets
Hark, how these instruments summon to supper!
The messengers of Venice stay the meat.
Go in, and weep not; all things shall be well.
Exeunt Desdemona and

Enter Roderigo.

How now, Roderigo!
RODERIGO. I do not find that thou dealest justly with me.
IAGO. What in the contrary?
RODERIGO. Every day thou daffest me with some device, Iago; and
rather, as it seems to me now, keepest from me all
than suppliest me with the least advantage of hope. I will
no longer endure it; nor am I yet persuaded to put up in
what already I have foolishly suffered.
IAGO. Will you hear me, Roderigo?
RODERIGO. Faith, I have heard too much, for your words and
performances are no kin together.
IAGO. You charge me most unjustly.
RODERIGO. With nought but truth. I have wasted myself out of my
means. The jewels you have had from me to deliver to
would half have corrupted a votarist. You have told me she
received them and returned me expectations and comforts of
respect and acquaintance; but I find none.
IAGO. Well, go to, very well.
RODERIGO. Very well! go to! I cannot go to, man; nor 'tis not
well. By this hand, I say 'tis very scurvy, and begin to find
myself fopped in it.
IAGO. Very well.
RODERIGO. I tell you 'tis not very well. I will make myself
to Desdemona. If she will return me my jewels, I will give
my suit and repent my unlawful solicitation; if not, assure
yourself I will seek satisfaction of you.
IAGO. You have said now.
RODERIGO. Ay, and said nothing but what I protest intendment of
IAGO. Why, now I see there's mettle in thee; and even from this

instant do build on thee a better opinion than ever before.
me thy hand, Roderigo. Thou hast taken against me a most just
exception; but yet, I protest, I have dealt most directly in
RODERIGO. It hath not appeared.
IAGO. I grant indeed it hath not appeared, and your suspicion
not without wit and judgement. But, Roderigo, if thou hast
in thee indeed, which I have greater reason to believe now
ever, I mean purpose, courage, and valor, this night show it;
thou the next night following enjoy not Desdemona, take me
this world with treachery and devise engines for my life.
RODERIGO. Well, what is it? Is it within reason and compass?
IAGO. Sir, there is especial commission come from Venice to
Cassio in Othello's place.
RODERIGO. Is that true? Why then Othello and Desdemona return
to Venice.
IAGO. O, no; he goes into Mauritania, and takes away with him
fair Desdemona, unless his abode be lingered here by some
accident; wherein none can be so determinate as the removing
RODERIGO. How do you mean, removing of him?
IAGO. Why, by making him uncapable of Othello's place; knocking
his brains.
RODERIGO. And that you would have me to do?
IAGO. Ay, if you dare do yourself a profit and a right. He sups
tonight with a harlotry, and thither will I go to him. He
not yet of his honorable fortune. If you will watch his going
thence, which his will fashion to fall out between twelve and
one, you may take him at your pleasure; I will be near to
your attempt, and he shall fall between us. Come, stand not
amazed at it, but go along with me; I will show you such a
necessity in his death that you shall think yourself bound to
it on him. It is now high supper-time, and the night grows to
waste. About it.
RODERIGO. I will hear further reason for this.
IAGO. And you shall be satisfied.

Another room in the castle.

Enter Othello, Lodovico, Desdemona, Emilia, and Attendants.

LODOVICO. I do beseech you, sir, trouble yourself no further.
OTHELLO. O, pardon me; 'twill do me good to walk.
LODOVICO. Madam, good night; I humbly thank your ladyship.
DESDEMONA. Your honor is most welcome.
OTHELLO. Will you walk, sir?
OTHELLO. Get you to bed on the instant; I will be returned
forthwith. Dismiss your attendant there; look it be done.
DESDEMONA. I will, my lord.
Exeunt Othello, Lodovico, and
EMILIA. How goes it now? He looks gentler than he did.
DESDEMONA. He says he will return incontinent.
He hath commanded me to go to bed,
And bade me to dismiss you.
EMILIA. Dismiss me?
DESDEMONA. It was his bidding; therefore, good Emilia,
Give me my nightly wearing, and adieu.
We must not now displease him.
EMILIA. I would you had never seen him!
DESDEMONA. So would not I. My love doth so approve him,
That even his stubbornness, his checks, his frowns--
Prithee, unpin me--have grace and favor in them.
EMILIA. I have laid those sheets you bade me on the bed.
DESDEMONA. All's one. Good faith, how foolish are our minds!
If I do die before thee, prithee shroud me
In one of those same sheets.
EMILIA. Come, come, you talk.
DESDEMONA. My mother had a maid call'd Barbary;
She was in love, and he she loved proved mad
And did forsake her. She had a song of "willow";
An old thing 'twas, but it express'd her fortune,
And she died singing it. That song tonight
Will not go from my mind; I have much to do
But to go hang my head all at one side
And sing it like poor Barbary. Prithee, dispatch.
EMILIA. Shall I go fetch your nightgown?
DESDEMONA. No, unpin me here.
This Lodovico is a proper man.
EMILIA. A very handsome man.
DESDEMONA. He speaks well.
EMILIA. I know a lady in Venice would have walked barefoot to
Palestine for a touch of his nether lip.

"The poor soul sat sighing by a sycamore tree,
Sing all a green willow;
Her hand on her bosom, her head on her knee,
Sing willow, willow, willow.
The fresh streams ran by her, and murmur'd her moans,
Sing willow, willow, willow;
Her salt tears fell from her, and soften'd the stones--"

Lay by these--

[Sings.] "Sing willow, willow, willow--"

Prithee, hie thee; he'll come anon--
[Sings.] "Sing all a green willow must be my garland.
Let nobody blame him; his scorn I approve--"

Nay, that's not next. Hark, who is't that knocks?
EMILIA. It's the wind.

"I call'd my love false love; but what said he then?
Sing willow, willow, willow.
If I court moe women, you'll couch with moe men--"

So get thee gone; good night. Mine eyes do itch;
Doth that bode weeping?
EMILIA. 'Tis neither here nor there.
DESDEMONA. I have heard it said so. O, these men, these men!
Dost thou in conscience think--tell me, Emilia--
That there be women do abuse their husbands
In such gross kind?
EMILIA. There be some such, no question.
DESDEMONA. Wouldst thou do such a deed for all the world?
EMILIA. Why, would not you?
DESDEMONA. No, by this heavenly light!
EMILIA. Nor I neither by this heavenly light; I might do't as
i' the dark.
DESDEMONA. Wouldst thou do such a deed for all the world?
EMILIA. The world's a huge thing; it is a great price
For a small vice.
DESDEMONA. In troth, I think thou wouldst not.
EMILIA. In troth, I think I should, and undo't when I had done.
Marry, I would not do such a thing for a joint-ring, nor for
measures of lawn, nor for gowns, petticoats, nor caps, nor
petty exhibition; but, for the whole world--why, who would
make her husband a cuckold to make him a monarch? I should
venture purgatory for't.
DESDEMONA. Beshrew me, if I would do such a wrong
For the whole world.
EMILIA. Why, the wrong is but a wrong i' the world; and having
world for your labor, 'tis a wrong in your own world, and you
might quickly make it right.
DESDEMONA. I do not think there is any such woman.
EMILIA. Yes, a dozen, and as many to the vantage as would store
world they played for.
But I do think it is their husbands' faults
If wives do fall; say that they slack their duties
And pour our treasures into foreign laps,
Or else break out in peevish jealousies,
Throwing restraint upon us, or say they strike us,
Or scant our former having in despite,
Why, we have galls, and though we have some grace,
Yet have we some revenge. Let husbands know
Their wives have sense like them; they see and smell
And have their palates both for sweet and sour,
As husbands have. What is it that they do
When they change us for others? Is it sport?
I think it is. And doth affection breed it?
I think it doth. Is't frailty that thus errs?
It is so too. And have not we affections,
Desires for sport, and frailty, as men have?
Then let them use us well; else let them know,
The ills we do, their ills instruct us so.
DESDEMONA. Good night, good night. Heaven me such uses send,
Not to pick bad from bad, but by bad mend!


Cyprus. A street.

Enter Iago and Roderigo:

IAGO. Here, stand behind this bulk; straight will he come.
Wear thy good rapier bare, and put it home.
Quick, quick; fear nothing; I'll be at thy elbow.
It makes us, or it mars us; think on that,
And fix most firm thy resolution.
RODERIGO. Be near at hand; I may miscarry in't.
IAGO. Here, at thy hand, be bold, and take thy stand.
RODERIGO. I have no great devotion to the deed;
And yet he hath given me satisfying reasons.
'Tis but a man gone. Forth, my sword; he dies.
IAGO. I have rubb'd this young quat almost to the sense,
And he grows angry. Now, whether he kill Cassio,
Or Cassio him, or each do kill the other,
Every way makes my gain. Live Roderigo,
He calls me to a restitution large
Of gold and jewels that I bobb'd from him,
As gifts to Desdemona;
It must not be. If Cassio do remain,
He hath a daily beauty in his life
That makes me ugly; and besides, the Moor
May unfold me to him; there stand I in much peril.
No, he must die. Be't so. I hear him coming.

Enter Cassio.

RODERIGO. I know his gait; 'tis he. Villain, thou diest!
Makes a pass at
CASSIO. That thrust had been mine enemy indeed,
But that my coat is better than thou know'st;
I will make proof of thine. Draws, and wounds
RODERIGO. O, I am slain!
Iago from behind wounds Cassio in the leg, and exit.
CASSIO. I am maim'd forever. Help, ho! Murther! Murther!

Enter Othello.

OTHELLO. The voice of Cassio; Iago keeps his word.
RODERIGO. O, villain that I am!
OTHELLO. It is even so.
CASSIO. O, help, ho! Light! A surgeon!
OTHELLO. 'Tis he. O brave Iago, honest and just,
That hast such noble sense of thy friend's wrong!
Thou teachest me. Minion, your dear lies dead,
And your unblest fate hies. Strumpet, I come!
Forth of my heart those charms, thine eyes, are blotted;
Thy bed lust-stain'd shall with lust's blood be spotted.

Enter Lodovico and Gratiano.

CASSIO. What, ho! No watch? No passage? Murther! Murther!
GRATIANO. 'Tis some mischance; the cry is very direful.
CASSIO. O, help!
RODERIGO. O wretched villain!
LODOVICO. Two or three groan; it is a heavy night.
These may be counterfeits; let's think't unsafe
To come in to the cry without more help.
RODERIGO. Nobody come? Then shall I bleed to death.

Re-enter Iago, with a light.

GRATIANO. Here's one comes in his shirt, with light and
IAGO. Who's there? Whose noise is this that cries on murther?
LODOVICO. We do not know.
IAGO. Did not you hear a cry?
CASSIO. Here, here! for heaven's sake, help me!
IAGO. What's the matter?
GRATIANO. This is Othello's ancient, as I take it.
LODOVICO. The same indeed; a very valiant fellow.
IAGO. What are you here that cry so grievously?
CASSIO. Iago? O, I am spoil'd, undone by villains!
Give me some help.
IAGO. O me, lieutenant! What villains have done this?
CASSIO. I think that one of them is hereabout,
And cannot make away.
IAGO. O treacherous villains!
[To Lodovico and Gratiano.] What are you there?
Come in and give some help.
RODERIGO. O, help me here!
CASSIO. That's one of them.
IAGO. O murtherous slave! O villain!
RODERIGO. O damn'd Iago! O inhuman dog!
IAGO. Kill men i' the dark! Where be these bloody thieves?
How silent is this town! Ho! Murther! Murther!
What may you be? Are you of good or evil?
LODOVICO. As you shall prove us, praise us.
IAGO. Signior Lodovico?
LODOVICO. He, sir.
IAGO. I cry you mercy. Here's Cassio hurt by villains.
IAGO. How is't, brother?
CASSIO. My leg is cut in two.
IAGO. Marry, heaven forbid!
Light, gentlemen; I'll bind it with my shirt.

Enter Bianca.

BIANCA. What is the matter, ho? Who is't that cried?
IAGO. Who is't that cried?
BIANCA. O my dear Cassio, my sweet Cassio! O Cassio, Cassio,
IAGO. O notable strumpet! Cassio, may you suspect
Who they should be that have thus mangled you?
GRATIANO. I am sorry to find you thus; I have been to seek you.
IAGO. Lend me a garter. So. O, for a chair,
To bear him easily hence!
BIANCA. Alas, he faints! O Cassio, Cassio, Cassio!
IAGO. Gentlemen all, I do suspect this trash
To be a party in this injury.
Patience awhile, good Cassio. Come, come;
Lend me a light. Know we this face or no?
Alas, my friend and my dear countryman
Roderigo? No--yes, sure. O heaven! Roderigo.
GRATIANO. What, of Venice?
IAGO. Even he, sir. Did you know him?
GRATIANO. Know him! ay.
IAGO. Signior Gratiano? I cry you gentle pardon;
These bloody accidents must excuse my manners,
That so neglected you.
GRATIANO. I am glad to see you.
IAGO. How do you, Cassio? O, a chair, a chair!
GRATIANO. Roderigo!
IAGO. He, he, 'tis he. [A chair brought in.] O, that's well
the chair.
Some good man bear him carefully from hence;
I'll fetch the general's surgeon. [To Bianca.] For you,
Save you your labor. He that lies slain here, Cassio,
Was my dear friend; what malice was between you?
CASSIO. None in the world; nor do I know the man.
IAGO. [To Bianca.] What, look you pale? O, bear him out o' the
Cassio and Roderigo are borne
Stay you, good gentlemen. Look you pale, mistress?
Do you perceive the gastness of her eye?
Nay, if you stare, we shall hear more anon.
Behold her well; I pray you, look upon her.
Do you see, gentlemen? Nay, guiltiness will speak,
Though tongues were out of use.

Enter Emilia.

EMILIA. 'Las, what's the matter? What's the matter, husband?
IAGO. Cassio hath here been set on in the dark
By Roderigo, and fellows that are 'scaped;
He's almost slain, and Roderigo dead.
EMILIA. Alas, good gentleman! alas, good Cassio!
IAGO. This is the fruit of whoring. Prithee, Emilia,
Go know of Cassio where he supp'd tonight.
What, do you shake at that?
BIANCA. He supp'd at my house; but I therefore shake not.
IAGO. O, did he so? I charge you, go with me.
EMILIA. Fie, fie upon thee, strumpet!
BIANCA. I am no strumpet, but of life as honest
As you that thus abuse me.
EMILIA. As I! foh! fie upon thee!
IAGO. Kind gentlemen, let's go see poor Cassio dress'd.
Come, mistress, you must tell's another tale.
Emilia, run you to the citadel,
And tell my lord and lady what hath happ'd!
Will you go on? [Aside.] This is the night
That either makes me or fordoes me quite.

A bedchamber in the castle. Desdemona in bed asleep; a light

Enter Othello.

OTHELLO. It is the cause, it is the cause, my soul.
Let me not name it to you, you chaste stars!
It is the cause. Yet I'll not shed her blood,
Nor scar that whiter skin of hers than snow
And smooth as monumental alabaster.
Yet she must die, else she'll betray more men.
Put out the light, and then put out the light.
If I quench thee, thou flaming minister,
I can again thy former light restore,
Should I repent me; but once put out thy light,
Thou cunning'st pattern of excelling nature,
I know not where is that Promethean heat
That can thy light relume. When I have pluck'd the rose,
I cannot give it vital growth again,
It must needs wither; I'll smell it on the tree. Kisses
O, balmy breath, that dost almost persuade
Justice to break her sword! One more, one more;
Be thus when thou art dead, and I will kill thee,
And love thee after. One more, and this the last;
So sweet was ne'er so fatal. I must weep,
But they are cruel tears; this sorrow's heavenly,
It strikes where it doth love. She wakes.
DESDEMONA. Who's there? Othello?
OTHELLO. Ay, Desdemona.
DESDEMONA. Will you come to bed, my lord?
OTHELLO. Have you pray'd tonight, Desdemona?
DESDEMONA. Ay, my lord.
OTHELLO. If you bethink yourself of any crime
Unreconciled as yet to heaven and grace,
Solicit for it straight.
DESDEMONA. Alas, my lord, what may you mean by that?
OTHELLO. Well, do it, and be brief; I will walk by.
I would not kill thy unprepared spirit.
No, heaven forfend! I would not kill thy soul.
DESDEMONA. Talk you of killing?
OTHELLO. Ay, I do.
DESDEMONA. Then heaven have mercy on me!
OTHELLO. Amen, with all my heart!
DESDEMONA. If you say so, I hope you will not kill me.
DESDEMONA. And yet I fear you, for you are fatal then
When your eyes roll so. Why I should fear I know not,
Since guiltiness I know not; but yet I feel I fear.
OTHELLO. Think on thy sins.
DESDEMONA. They are loves I bear to you.
OTHELLO. Ay, and for that thou diest.
DESDEMONA. That death's unnatural that kills for loving.
Alas, why gnaw you so your nether lip?
Some bloody passion shakes your very frame.
These are portents; but yet I hope, I hope,
They do not point on me.
OTHELLO. Peace, and be still!
DESDEMONA. I will so. What's the matter?
OTHELLO. That handkerchief which I so loved and gave thee
Thou gavest to Cassio.
DESDEMONA. No, by my life and soul!
Send for the man, and ask him.
OTHELLO. Sweet soul, take heed,
Take heed of perjury; thou are on thy deathbed.
DESDEMONA. Ay, but not yet to die.
OTHELLO. Yes, presently:
Therefore confess thee freely of thy sin,
For to deny each article with oath
Cannot remove nor choke the strong conception
That I do groan withal. Thou art to die.
DESDEMONA. Then Lord have mercy on me!
OTHELLO. I say, amen.
DESDEMONA. And have you mercy too! I never did
Offend you in my life; never loved Cassio
But with such general warranty of heaven
As I might love. I never gave him token.
OTHELLO. By heaven, I saw my handkerchief in 's hand.
O perjured woman! Thou dost stone my heart,
And makest me call what I intend to do
A murther, which I thought a sacrifice.
I saw the handkerchief.
DESDEMONA. He found it then;
I never gave it him. Send for him hither;
Let him confess a truth.
OTHELLO. He hath confess'd.
DESDEMONA. What, my lord?
OTHELLO. That he hath used thee.
DESDEMONA. How? unlawfully?
DESDEMONA. He will not say so.
OTHELLO. No, his mouth is stopp'd;
Honest Iago hath ta'en order for't.
DESDEMONA. O, my fear interprets! What, is he dead?
OTHELLO. Had all his hairs been lives, my great revenge
Had stomach for them all.
DESDEMONA. Alas, he is betray'd, and I undone!
OTHELLO. Out, strumpet! Weep'st thou for him to my face?
DESDEMONA. O, banish me, my lord, but kill me not!
OTHELLO. Down, strumpet!
DESDEMONA. Kill me tomorrow; let me live tonight!
OTHELLO. Nay, if you strive--
DESDEMONA. But half an hour!
OTHELLO. Being done, there is no pause.
DESDEMONA. But while I say one prayer!
OTHELLO. It is too late. He stifles
EMILIA. [Within.] My lord, my lord! What, ho! my lord, my lord!
OTHELLO. What noise is this? Not dead? not yet quite dead?
I that am cruel am yet merciful;
I would not have thee linger in thy pain.
So, so.
EMILIA. [Within.] What, ho! my lord, my lord!
OTHELLO. Who's there?
EMILIA. [Within.] O, good my lord, I would speak a word with
OTHELLO. Yes, 'tis Emilia. By and by. She's dead.
'Tis like she comes to speak of Cassio's death.
The noise was here. Ha! no more moving?
Still as the grave. Shall she come in? were't good?
I think she stirs again. No. What's best to do?
If she come in, she'll sure speak to my wife.
My wife! My wife! What wife? I have no wife.
O, insupportable! O heavy hour!
Methinks it should be now a huge eclipse
Of sun and moon, and that the affrighted globe
Should yawn at alteration.
EMILIA. [Within.] I do beseech you
That I may speak with you, O, good my lord!
OTHELLO. I had forgot thee. O, come in, Emilia.
Soft, by and by. Let me the curtains draw.
Where art thou? Unlocks the

Enter Emilia.

What's the matter with thee now?
EMILIA. O, my good lord, yonder's foul murthers done!
OTHELLO. What, now?
EMILIA. But now, my lord.
OTHELLO. It is the very error of the moon;
She comes more nearer earth than she was wont
And makes men mad.
EMILIA. Cassio, my lord, hath kill'd a young Venetian
Call'd Roderigo.
OTHELLO. Roderigo kill'd?
And Cassio kill'd?
EMILIA. No, Cassio is not kill'd.
OTHELLO. Not Cassio kill'd! Then murther's out of tune,
And sweet revenge grows harsh.
DESDEMONA. O, falsely, falsely murther'd!
EMILIA. Alas, what cry is
OTHELLO. That? what?
EMILIA. Out, and alas! That was my lady's voice.
Help! help, ho! help! O lady, speak again!
Sweet Desdemona! O sweet mistress, speak!
DESDEMONA. A guiltless death I die.
EMILIA. O, who hath done this deed?
DESDEMONA. Nobody; I myself. Farewell;
Commend me to my kind lord. O, farewell!
OTHELLO. Why, how should she be murther'd?
EMILIA. Alas, who knows?
OTHELLO. You heard her say herself, it was not I.
EMILIA. She said so; I must needs report the truth.
OTHELLO. She's like a liar gone to burning hell;
'Twas I that kill'd her.
EMILIA. O, the more angel she,
And you the blacker devil!
OTHELLO. She turn'd to folly, and she was a whore.
EMILIA. Thou dost belie her, and thou art a devil.
OTHELLO. She was false as water.
EMILIA. Thou art rash as fire, to say
That she was false. O, she was heavenly true!
OTHELLO. Cassio did top her; ask thy husband else.
O, I were damn'd beneath all depth in hell,
But that I did proceed upon just grounds
To this extremity. Thy husband knew it all.
EMILIA. My husband?
OTHELLO. Thy husband.
EMILIA. That she was false to wedlock?
OTHELLO. Ay, with Cassio. Nay, had she been true,
If heaven would make me such another world
Of one entire and perfect chrysolite,
I'ld not have sold her for it.
EMILIA. My husband?
OTHELLO. Ay, 'twas he that told me first.
An honest man he is, and hates the slime
That sticks on filthy deeds.
EMILIA. My husband?
OTHELLO. What needs this iteration, woman? I say thy husband.
EMILIA. O mistress, villainy hath made mocks with love!
My husband say that she was false!
OTHELLO. He, woman;
I say thy husband. Dost understand the word?
My friend, thy husband, honest, honest Iago.
EMILIA. If he say so, may his pernicious soul
Rot half a grain a day! He lies to the heart.
She was too fond of her most filthy bargain.
EMILIA. Do thy worst;
This deed of thine is no more worthy heaven
Than thou wast worthy her.
OTHELLO. Peace, you were best.
EMILIA. Thou hast not half that power to do me harm
As I have to be hurt. O gull! O dolt!
As ignorant as dirt! Thou hast done a deed--
I care not for thy sword; I'll make thee known,
Though I lost twenty lives. Help! help, ho! help!
The Moor hath kill'd my mistress! Murther, murther!

Enter Montano, Gratiano, Iago, and others.

MONTANO. What is the matter? How now, general?
EMILIA. O, are you come, Iago? You have done well,
That men must lay their murthers on your neck.
GRATIANO. What is the matter?
EMILIA. Disprove this villain, if thou be'st a man.
He says thou told'st him that his wife was false;
I know thou didst not, thou'rt not such a villain.
Speak, for my heart is full.
IAGO. I told him what I thought, and told no more
Than what he found himself was apt and true.
EMILIA. But did you ever tell him she was false?
IAGO. I did.
EMILIA. You told a lie, an odious, damned lie;
Upon my soul, a lie, a wicked lie!
She false with Cassio? Did you say with Cassio?
IAGO. With Cassio, mistress. Go to, charm your tongue.
EMILIA. I will not charm my tongue; I am bound to speak.
My mistress here lies murther'd in her bed--
ALL. O heavens forfend!
EMILIA. And your reports have set the murther on.
OTHELLO. Nay, stare not, masters; it is true indeed.
GRATIANO. 'Tis a strange truth.
MONTANO. O monstrous act!
EMILIA. Villainy, villainy, villainy!
I think upon't, I think, I smell't, O villainy!
I thought so then. I'll kill myself for grief.
O villainy, villainy!
IAGO. What, are you mad? I charge you, get you home.
EMILIA. Good gentlemen, let me have leave to speak;
'Tis proper I obey him, but not now.
Perchance, Iago, I will ne'er go home.
OTHELLO. O! O! O! Falls on the
EMILIA. Nay, lay thee down and roar;
For thou hast kill'd the sweetest innocent
That e'er did lift up eye.
OTHELLO. [Rises.] O, she was foul!
I scarce did know you, uncle; there lies your niece,
Whose breath indeed these hands have newly stopp'd.
I know this act shows horrible and grim.
GRATIANO. Poor Desdemon! I am glad thy father's dead.
Thy match was mortal to him, and pure grief
Shore his old thread in twain; did he live now,
This sight would make him do a desperate turn,
Yea, curse his better angel from his side,
And fall to reprobation.
OTHELLO. 'Tis pitiful, but yet Iago knows
That she with Cassio hath the act of shame
A thousand times committed. Cassio confess'd it,
And she did gratify his amorous works
With that recognizance and pledge of love
Which I first gave her. I saw it in his hand,
It was a handkerchief, an antique token
My father gave my mother.
EMILIA. O heaven! O heavenly powers!
IAGO. 'Zounds! Hold your peace.
EMILIA. 'Twill out, 'twill. I peace?
No, I will speak as liberal as the north;
Let heaven and men and devils, let them all,

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