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Enter IAGO.

CAS. Welcome, Iago; we must to the watch.
IAGO. Not this hour, Lieutenant; 'tis not yet ten o' the
clock. Our General cast us thus early for the love of
his Desdemona; who let us not therefore blame; he
hath not yet made wanton the night with her; and she
is sport for Jove.

CAS. She's a most exquisite lady.

IAGO. And, I'll warrant her, full of game.

CAS. Indeed, she's a most fresh and delicate creature.

IAGO. What an eye she has! methinks it sounds a parley

to provocation.

CAS. An inviting eye; and yet methinks right modest. IAGO. And when she speaks, is it not an alarum to love?

CAS. She is, indeed, perfection.

IAGO. Well, happiness to their sheets! Come, Lieutenant, I have a stoup of wine; and here without are a brace of Cyprus gallants that would fain have a measure to the health of black Othello.


CAS. Not to-night, good Iago: I have very poor and unhappy brains for drinking. I could well wish courtesy would invent some other custom of entertainment.

IAGO. O, they are our friends; but one cup: I'll drink

for you.


CAS. I have drunk but one cup to-night, and that was craftily qualified1 too, and, behold, what innovation it makes here: I am unfortunate in the infirmity, and dare not task my weakness with any more.

IAGO. What, Man! 'tis a night of revels: the gallants desire it.

CAS. Where are they?

IAGO. Here at the door; I pray you, call them in.

CAS. I'll do 't; but it dislikes me.

IAGO. If I can fasten but one cup upon him,

With that which he hath drunk to-night already,
He'll be as full of quarrel and offence
As my young mistress' dog.


1 skilfully diluted.



Now, my sick fool




Whom love hath turn'd almost the wrong side out,
To Desdemona hath to-night carous'd
Potations pottle-deep; and he's to watch:
Three lads of Cyprus, noble swelling spirits,
That hold their honours in a wary distance,
The very elements of this warlike Isle,
Have I to-night fluster'd with flowing cups,

And they watch too. Now, 'mongst this flock of


Am I to put our Cassio in some action

may offend the Isle. But here they come:
If consequence do but approve my dream,
My boat sails freely, both with wind and stream.

IAGO. Some wine, ho!

[sings.] And let me the canakin clink, clink ;

And let me the canakin clink!

A soldier's a man;

A life's but a span ;

Why, then let a soldier drink!

Re-enter CASSIO; with him MONTANO and Gentlemen;
Servants following with wine.

CAS. 'Fore God, they have given me a rouse already.
MON. Good faith, a little one; not past a pint, as I am a


CAS. To the health of our General!

MON. I am for it, Lieutenant; and I'll do you justice.
IAGO. O sweet England!


Some wine, Boys!

CAS. 'Fore God, an excellent song.

IAGO. I learn'd it in England, where, indeed, they are
most potent in potting: your Dane, your German, and
your swag-bellied Hollander-Drink, ho!-are nothing
to your English.

CAS. Is your Englishman so expert in his drinking?
IAGO. Why, he drinks you, with facility, your Dane dead
drunk; he sweats not to overthrow your Almain; he
gives your Hollander a vomit, ere the next pottle can
be fill'd.



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[sings.] King Stephen was a worthy Peer,

His breeches cost him but a crown;
He held them sixpence all too dear,

With that he call'd the tailor lown.

He was a wight of high renown,

And thou art but of low degree:
'Tis pride that pulls the country down;
Then take thine auld cloak about thee.

Some wine, ho!

CAS. Why, this is a more exquisite song than the other.
IAGO. Will you hear 't again?

CAS. No; for I hold him to be unworthy of his place that

does those things. Well, God's above all; and there be souls must be sav'd, and there be souls must not be sav❜d.

IAGO. It's true, good Lieutenant.

CAS. For mine own part-no offence to the General, nor any man of quality-I hope to be sav'd.


IAGO. And so do I too, Lieutenant.

CAS. Ay, but, by your leave, not before me; the Lieutenant is to be sav'd before the Ancient. Let's have no more of this; let's to our affairs.-Forgive us our sins!-Gentlemen, let's look to our business. Do not think, Gentlemen, I am drunk: this is my Ancient; this is my right hand, and this is my left. I am not drunk now; I can stand well enough, and speak well enough. ALL. Excellent well.



CAS. Why, very well, then; you must not think, then, that I am drunk.


MON. To the platform, Masters; come, let's set the watch.

IAGO. You see this fellow that is gone before:
He is a soldier fit to stand by Cæsar

And give direction; and do but see his vice: 'Tis to his virtue a just equinox,

The one as long as the other: 'tis pity of him.

I fear the trust Othello puts him in,

On some odd time of his infirmity,
Will shake this Island.



But is he often thus?
IAGO. 'Tis evermore the prologue to his sleep:
He'll watch the horologe a double set,

If drink rock not his cradle.


It were well
The General were put in mind of it.
Perhaps he sees it not; or his good nature
Prizes the virtue that appears in Cassio,
And looks not on his evils: is not this true?


IAGO [aside to him.] How now, Roderigo!

I pray you, after the Lieutenant; go. [Exit RODERIGO.

MON. And 'tis great pity that the noble Moor

Should hazard such a place as his own second
With one of an ingraft infirmity:

It were an honest action to say

So to the Moor.


Not I, for this fair Island:
I do love Cassio well; and would do much

To cure him of this evil- But, hark! what noise?
[Cry within: Help! help!

Re-enter CASSIO, driving in RODERIGO.

CAS. You Rogue! you Rascal !
CAS. A knave teach me my duty!
I'll beat the knave into a twiggen bottle.1
ROD. Beat me!


Dost thou prate, Rogue?



What's the matter, Lieutenant ?


[striking RODERIGO. Nay, good Lieutenant ; [staying him.

Let me go, Sir,

Or I'll knock you o'er the mazzard.

Come, come, you're drunk.
CAS. Drunk!
[They fight.
IAGO [aside to RODERIGO.] Away, I say; go out, and cry

a mutiny !

I pray you, Sir, hold your hand.


1 a bundle of twigs.

Nay, good Lieutenant-alas, Gentlemen!—
Help, ho!-Lieutenant-Sir-Montano-Sir;-
Help, Masters!-Here's a goodly watch indeed!

[Bell rings.


Who's that which rings the bell?-Diablo, ho!
The town will rise: God's will, Lieutenant, hold!
You will be sham'd for ever.

Re-enter OTHELLO and Attendants.


MON. 'Zounds, I bleed still!

Отн. Hold, for your lives!

IAGO. Hold, ho! Lieutenant-Sir-Montano-Gentle


Have you forgot all sense of place and duty?

Hold! the General speaks to you; hold, hold, for

What is the matter here?
I am hurt to the death.


OTH. Why, how now, ho! from whence ariseth this?
Are we turn'd Turks, and to ourselves do that
Which Heaven hath forbid the Ottomites?
For Christian shame, put by this barbarous brawl!
He that stirs next to carve for his own rage
Holds his soul light; he dies upon his motion.
Silence that dreadful bell! it frights the Isle
From her propriety. What is the matter, Masters?
Honest Iago, that look'st dead with grieving,
Speak, who began this? on thy love, I charge


IAGO. I do not know: friends all but now, even now,
In quarter, and in terms like bride and groom
Devesting them for bed; and then, but now
(As if some Planet had unwitted men)
Swords out, and tilting one at other's breast,
In opposition bloody. I cannot speak
Any beginning to this peevish odds;
And would in action glorious I had lost

Those legs that brought me to a part of it!
Oтн. How comes it, Michael, you are thus forgot?
CAS. I pray you, pardon me; I cannot speak.
OTн. Worthy Montano, you were wont be civil;




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