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Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Donald L. Bailey
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Othello (Folio 1, 1623)


Scæna Tertia.
Enter Duke, Senators, and Officers.
325Duke. There's no composition in this Newes,
That giues them Credite.
1. Sen. Indeed, they are disproportioned;
My Letters say, a Hundred and seuen Gallies.
Duke. And mine a Hundred fortie.
3302. Sena. And mine two Hundred:
But though they iumpe not on a iust accompt,
(As in these Cases where the ayme reports,
'Tis oft with difference) yet do they all confirme
A Turkish Fleete, and bearing vp to Cyprus.
335Duke. Nay, it is possible enough to iudgement:
I do not so secure me in the Error,
But the maine Article I do approue
In fearefull sense.
Saylor within. What hoa, what hoa, what hoa.
340
Enter Saylor.
Officer. A Messenger from the Gallies.
Duke. Now? What's the businesse?
Sailor. The Turkish Preparation makes for Rhodes,
So was I bid report here to the State,
345By Signior Angelo.
Duke. How say you by this change?
1. Sen. This cannot be
By no assay of reason. 'Tis a Pageant
To keepe vs in false gaze, when we consider
350Th'importancie of Cyprus to the Turke;
And let our selues againe but vnderstand,
That as it more concernes the Turke then Rhodes,
So may he with more facile question beare it,
For that it stands not in such Warrelike brace,
355But altogether lackes th'abilities
That Rhodes is dress'd in. If we make thought of this,
We must not thinke the Turke is so vnskillfull,
To leaue that latest, which concernes him first,
Neglecting an attempt of ease, and gaine
360To wake, and wage a danger profitlesse.
Duke. Nay, in all confidence he's not for Rhodes.
Officer. Here is more Newes.
Enter a Messenger.
Messen. The Ottamites. Reueren'd, and Gracious,
365Steering with due course toward the Ile of Rhodes,
Haue there inioynted them with an after Fleete.
1. Sen. I, so I thought: how many, as you guesse?
Mess. Of thirtie Saile: and now they do re-stem
Their backward course, bearing with frank appearance
370Their purposes toward Cyprus. Signior Montano,
Your trustie and most Valiant Seruitour,
With his free dutie, recommends you thus,
And prayes you to beleeue him.
Duke. 'Tis certaine then for Cyprus:
375Marcus Luccicos is not he in Towne?
1. Sen. He's now in Florence.
Duke. Write from vs,
To him, Post, Post-haste, dispatch.
1. Sen. Here comes Brabantio, and the Valiant Moore.
380
Enter Brabantio, Othello, Cassio, Iago, Rodorigo,
and Officers.
Duke. Valiant Othello, we must straight employ you
Against the generall Enemy Ottoman.
I did not see you: welcome gentle Signior,
385We lack't your Counsaile, and your helpe to night.
Bra. So didI yours: Good your Grace pardon me.
Neither my place, hor ought I heard of businesse
Hath rais'd me from my bed; nor doth the generall care
Take hold on me. For my perticular griefe
390Is of so flood-gate, and ore-bearing Nature,
That it engluts, snd swallowes other sorrowes,
And it is still it selfe.
Duke. Why? What's the matter?
Bra. My Daughter: oh my Daughter!
395Sen. Dead?
Bra. I, to me.
She is abus'd, stolne from me, and corrupted
By Spels, and Medicines, bought of Mountebanks;
For Nature, so prepostrously to erre,
400(Being not deficient, blind, or lame of sense,)
Sans witch-craft could not.
Duke. Who ere he be, that in this foule proceeding
Hath thus beguil'd your Daughter of her selfe,
And you of her; the bloodie Booke of Law,
405You shall your selfe read, in the bitter letter,
After your owne sense: yea, though our proper Son
Stood in your Action.
Bra. Humbly I thanke your Grace,
Here is the man; this Moore, whom now it seemes
410Your speciall Mandate, for the State affaires
Hath hither brought.
All. We are veriesorry for't.
Duke. What in yonr owne part, can you say to this?
Bra. Nothing, but this is so.
415Othe. Most Potent, Graue, and Reueren'd Signiors,
My very Noble, and approu'd good Masters;
That I haue tane away this old mans Daughter,
It is most true: true I haue married her;
The verie head, and front of my offending,
420Hath this extent; no more. Rude am I, in my speech,
And little bless'd with the soft phrase of Peace;
For since these Armes of mine, had seuen yeares pith,
Till now, some nine Moones wasted, they haue vs'd
Their deerest action, in the Tented Field:
425And little of this great world can I speake,
More then pertaines to Feats ofBroiles, and Battaile,
And therefore little shall I grace my cause,
In speaking for my selfe. Yet, (by your gratious patience)
I will a round vn-varnish'd u Tale deliuer,
430Of my whole course of Loue.
What Drugges, what Charmes,
What Coniuration, and what mighty Magicke,
(For such proceeding I am charg'd withall)
I won his Daughter.
435Bra. A Maiden, neuer bold:
Of Spirit so still, and quiet, that her Motion
Blush'd at her selfe, and she, in spight of Nature,
Of Yeares, of Country, Credite, euery thing
To fall in Loue, with what she fear'd to looke on;
440It is a iudgement main'd, and most imperfect.
That will confesse Perfection so could erre
Against all rules of Nature, and must be driuen
To find out practises of cunning hell
Why this should be. I therefore vouch againe,
445That with some Mixtures, powrefull o're the blood,
Or with some Dram, (coniur'd to this effect)
He wtought vp on her.
To vouch this, is no proofe,
Without more wider, and more ouer Test
450Then these thin habits, and poore likely-hoods
Of moderne seeming, do prefer against him.
Sen. But Othello, speake,
Did you, by indirect, and forced courses
Subdue, and poyson this yong Maides affections?
455Or came it by request, and such faire question
As soule, to soule affordeth?
Othel. I do beseech you,
Send for the Lady to the Sagitary.
And let her speake of me before her Father;
460If you do finde me foule, in herreport,
The Trust, the Office, I do hold of you,
Not onely take away, but let your Sentence
Euen fall vpon my life.
Duke. Fetch Desdemona hither.
465Othe. Aunciant, conduct them:
You best know the place.
And tell she come, as truely as to heauen,
I do confesse the vices of my blood,
So iustly to your Graue eares, Ile present
470How I did thriue in this faire Ladies loue,
And she in mine.
Duke. Say it Othello.
Othe. Her Father lou'd me, oft inuited me:
Still question'd me the Storie of my life,
475From yeare to yeare: the Battaile, Sieges, Fortune,
That I haue past.
I ran it through, euen from my boyish daies,
Toth'very moment that he bad me tell it.
Wherein I spoke of most disastrous chances:
480Of mouing Accidents by Flood and Field,
Of haire-breadth scapes i'th'imminent deadly breach;
Of being taken by the Insolent Foe,
And sold to slauery. Of my redemption thence,
And portance in my Trauellours historie.
485Wherein of Antars vast, and Desarts idle,
Rough Quarries, Rocks, Hills, whose head touch heauen,
It was my hint to speake. Such was my Processe,
And of the Canibals that each others eate,
The Antropophague, and men whose heads
490Grew beneath their shoulders. These things to heare,
Would Desdemona seriously incline:
But still the house Affaires would draw her hence:
Which euer as she could with haste dispatch,
She'l'd come againe, and with a greedie eare
495Deuoure vp my discourse. Which I obseruing,
Tooke once a pliant houre, and found good meanes
To draw from her a prayer of earnest heart,
That I would all my Pilgrimage dilate,
Whereof by parcels she had something heard,
500But not instinctiuely: I did consent,
And often did beguile her of her teares,
When I did speake of some distressefull stroke
That my youth suffer'd: My Storie being done,
She gaue me for my paines a world of kisses:
505She swore in faith 'twas strange: 'twas passing strange,
'Twas pittifull: 'twas wondrous pittifull.
She wish'd she had not heard it, yet she wish'd
That Heauen had made her such a man. She thank'd me,
And bad me, if I had a Friend that lou'd her,
510I should but teach him how to tell my Story,
And that would wooe her. Vpon this hint I spake,
She lou'd me for the dangers I had past,
And I lou'd her, that she did pitty them.
This onely is the witch-craft I haue vs'd.
515Here comes the Ladie: Let her witnesse it.
Enter Desdemona, Iago, Attendants.
Duke. I thinke this tale would win my Daughter too,
Good Brabantio, take vp this mangled matter at the best:
Men do their broken Weapons rather vse,
520Then their bare hands.
Bra. I pray you heare her speake?
If she confesse that she was halfe the wooer,
Destruction on my head, if my bad blame
Light on the man. Come hither gentle Mistris,
525Do you perceiue in all this Noble Companie,
Where most you owe obedience?
Des. My Noble Father,
I do perceiue heere a diuided dutie.
To you I am bound for life, and education:
530My life and education both do learne me,
How to respect you. You are the Lord of duty,
I am hitherto your Daughter. But heere's my Husband;
And so much dutie, as my Mother shew'd
To you, preferring you before her Father:
535So much I challenge, that Imay professe
Due to the Moore my Lord.
Bra. God be with you: I haue done.
Please it your Grace, on to the State Affaires;
I had rather to adopt a Child, then get it.
540Come hither Moore;
I here do giue thee that with all my heart,
Which but thou hast already, with all my heart
I would keepe from thee. For your sake (Iewell)
I am glad at soule, I haue no other Child;
545For thy escape would teach me Tirranie
To hang clogges on them. I haue done my Lord.
Duke. Let me speake like your selfe:
And lay a Sentence,
Which as a grise, or step may helpe these Louers.
550When remedies are past, the griefes are ended
By seeing the worst, which late on hopes depended.
To mourne a Mischeefe that is past and gon,
Is the next way to draw new mischiefe on.
What cannot be presern'd, when Fortune takes:
555Patience, her Iniury a mock'ry makes.
The rob'd that smiles, steales something from the Thiefe,
He robs himselfe, that spends a bootelesse griefe.
Bra. So let the Turke of Cyprus vs beguile,
We loose it not so long as we can smile:
560He beares the Sentence well, that nothing beares,
But the free comfort which from thence he heares.
But he beares both the Sentence, and the sorrow,
That to pay griefe, must of poore Patience borrow.
These Sentences, to Sugar, or to Gall,
565Being strong on both sides, are Equiuocall.
But words are words, I neuer yet did heare:
That the bruized heart was pierc'd through the eares.
I humbly beseech you proceed to th'Affaires of State.
Duke. The Turke with a most mighty Preparation
570makes for Cyprus: Othello, the Fortitude of the place is
best knowne to you. And though we haue there a Substi-
tute of most allowed sufficiencie; yet opinion, a more
soueraigne Mistris of Effects, throwes a more safer
voice on you : you must therefore be content to slubber
575the glosse of your new Fortunes, with this more stub-
borne, and boystrous expedition.
Othe. The Tirant Custome, most Graue Senators,
Hath made the flinty and Steele Coach of Warre
My thrice-driuen bed of Downe. I do agnize
580A Naturall and prompt Alacartie,
I finde in hardnesse: and do vndertake
This present Warres against the Ottamites.
Most humbly therefore bending to your State,
I craue fit disposition for my Wife,
585Due reference of Place, and Exhibition,
With such Accomodation and besort
As leuels with her breeding.
Duke. Why at her Fathers?
Bra. I will not haue it so.
590Othe. Nor I.
Des. Nor would I thererecide,
To put my Father in impatient thoughts
By being in his eye. Most Grcaious Duke,
To my vnfolding, lend your prosperous eare,
595And let me finde a Charter in your voice
T'assist my simplenesse.
Duke. What would you Desdemona?
Des. That I loue the Moore, to liue with him,
My downe-right violence, and storme of Fortunes,
600May trumpet to the world. My heart's subdu'd
Euen to the very quality of my Lord;
I saw Othello's visage in his mind,
And to his Honours and his valiant parts,
Did I my soule and Fortunes consecrate.
605So that (deere Lords) if I be left behind
A Moth of Peace, and he go to the Warre,
The Rites for why I loue him, are bereft me:
And I a heauie interim shall support
By his deere absence. Let me go with him.
610Othe. Let her haue your voice.
Vouch with me Heauen, I therefore beg it not
To please the pallate of my Appetite:
Nor to comply with heat the yong affects
In my defunct, and proper satisfaction.
615But to be free, and bounteous to her minde:
And Heauen defend your good soules, that you thinke
I will your serious and great businesse scant
When she is with me. No, when light wing'd Toyes
Of feather'd Cupid, seele with wanton dulnesse
620My speculatiue, and offic'd Instrument:
That my Disports corrupt, and taint my businesse:
Let House-wiues make a Skillet of my Helme,
And all indigne, and base aduersities,
Make head against my Estimation.
625Duke. Be it as you shall priuately determine,
Either for her stay, or going: th'Affaire cries hast:
And speed must answer it.
Sen. You must away to night.
Othe. With all my heart.
630Duke. At nine i'th'morning, here wee'l meete againe.
Othello, leaue some Officer behind
And he shall our Commission bring to you:
And such things else of qualitie and respect
As doth import you.
635Othe. So please your Grace, my Ancient,
A man he is of honesty and trust:
To his conueyance I assigne my wife,
With what else needfull, your good Grace shall think
To be sent after me.
640Duke. Let it be so:
Good night to euery one. And Noble Signior,
If Vertue no delighted Beautie lacke,
Your Son-in-law is farre more Faire then Blacke.
Sen. Adieu braue Moore, vse Desdemona well.
645Bra. Looke to her (Moore) if thou hast eies to see:
She ha's deceiu'd her Father, and may thee.
Exit.
Ot-he. My life vpon her faith. Honest Iago,
My Desdemona must I leaue to thee:
I prythee let thy wife attend on her,
650And bring them after in the best aduantage.
ComeDesdemona, I haue but an houre
Of Loue, of wordly matter, and direction
To spend with thee. We must obey the the time.
Exit.
Rod. Iago.
655Iago. What saist thou Noble heart?
Rod. What will I do, think'st thou?
Iago. Why go to bed and sleepe.
Rod. I will incontinently drowne my selfe.
Iago. If thou do'st, I shall neuer loue thee after. Why
660thou silly Gentleman?
Rod. It is sillynesse to liue, when to liue is torment:
and then haue we a prescription to dye, when death is
our Physition.
Iago. Oh villanous: I haue look'd vpon the world
665for foure times seuen yeares, and since I could distinguish
betwixt a Benefit, and an Iniurie: I neuer found man that
knew how to loue himselfe. Ere I would say, I would
drowne my selfe for the loue of a Gynney Hen, I would
change my Humanity with a Baboone.
670Rod. What should I do? I confesse it is my shame
to be so fond, but it is not in my vertue to amend it.
Iago. Vertue? A figge, 'tis in our selues that we are
thus, or thus. Our Bodies are our Gardens, to the which,
our Wills are Gardiners. So that if we will plant Net-
675tels, or sowe Lettice: Set Hisope, and weede vp Time:
Supplie it with one gender of Hearbes, or distract it with
many: either to haue it sterrill with idlenesse, or manu-
red with Industry, why the power, and Corrigeable au-
thoritie of this lies in our Wills. If the braine of our liues
680had not one Scale of Reason, to poize another of Sensu-
alitie, the blood, and basenesse of our Natures would
conduct vs to most prepostrous Conclusions. But we
haue Reason to coole our raging Motions, our carnall
Stings, or vnbitted Lusts: whereof I take this, that you
685call Loue, to be a Sect, or Seyen.
Rod. It cannot be.
Iago. It is meerly a Lust of the blood, and a permission
of the will. Come, be a man: drowne thy selfe? Drown
Cats, and blind Puppies. I haue profest me thy Friend,
690and I confesse me knit to thy deseruing, with Cables of
perdurable toughnesse. I could neuer better steed thee
then now. Put Money in thy purse: follow thou the
Warres, defeate thy fauour, with an vsurp'd Beard. I say
put Money in thy purse. It cannot be long that Desdemona
695should continue her loue to the Moore. Put Money in
thy purse: nor he his to her. It was a violent Commence-
ment in her, and thou shalt see an answerable Seque-
stration, put but Money in thy purse. These Moores
are changeable in their wils: fill thy purse with Money.
700The Food that to him now is as lushious as Locusts,
shalbe to him shortly, as bitter as Coloquintida. She
must change for youth: when she is sated with his body
she will find the errors of her choice. Therefore, put Mo-
ney in thy purse. If thou wilt needs damne thy selfe, do
705it a more delicate way then drowning. Make all the Mo-
ney thou canst: If Sanctimonie, and a fraile vow, be-
twixt an erring Barbarian, and super-subtle Venetian be
not too hard for my wits, and all the Tribe of hell, thou
shalt enioy her: therefore make Money: a pox of drow-
710ning thy selfe, it is cleane out of the way. Seeke thou ra-
ther to be hang'd in Compassing thy ioy, then to be
drown'd, and go without her.
Rodo. Wilt thou be fast to my hopes, if I depend on
the issue?
715Iago. Thou art sure of me: Go make Money: I haue
told thee often, and I re-tell thee againe, and againe, I
hate the Moore. My cause is hearted; thine hath no lesse
reason. Let vs be coniunctiue in our reuenge, against
him. If thou canst Cuckold him, thou dost thy selfe a
720pleasure, me a sport. There are many Euents in the
Wombe of Time, which wilbe deliuered. Trauerse, go,
prouide thy Money. We will haue more of this to mor-
row. Adieu.
Rod. Where shall we meete i'th'morning?
725Iago. At my Lodging.
Rod. Ile be with thee betimes.
Iago. Go too, farewell. Do you heare Rodorigo?
Rod. Ile sell all my Land.
Exit.
Iago. Thus do I euer make my Foole, my purse:
730For I mine owne gain'd knowledge should prophane
IfI would time expend with such Snpe ,
But for my Sport, and Profit: I hate the Moore,
And it is thought abroad, that 'twixt my sheets
She ha's done my Office. I know not if't be true,
735But I, for meere suspition in that kinde,
Will do, as if for Surety. He holds me well,
The better shall my purpose worke on him:
Cassio's a proper man: Let me see now,
To get his Place, and to plume vp my will
740In double Knauery. How? How? Let's see.
After some time, to abuse Othello's eares,
That he is too familiar with his wife:
He hath a person, and a smooth dispose
To be suspected: fram'd to make women false.
745The Moore is of a free, and open Nature,
That thinkes men honest, that but seeme to be so,
And will as tenderly be lead by'th'Nose
As Asses are:
I haue't: it is engendred: Hell, and Night,
750Must bring this monstrous Birth, to the worlds light.