Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Donald L. Bailey
Peer Reviewed

Othello (Quarto 1, 1622)


Enter Othello and Emillia.
Oth. You haue seene nothing then.
Em. Nor euer heard, nor euer did suspect.
2690Oth. Yes, and you haue seene Cassio and she together.
Em. But then I saw no harme, and then I heard
Each sillable that breath made vp betweene 'em.
Oth. What, did they neuer whisper?
Em. Neuer, my Lord.
2695Oth. Nor send you out o'the way?
Em. Neuer.
Oth. To fetch her fan, her mask, her gloues, nor nothing?
Em. Neuer, my Lord.
Oth. That's strange.
2700Em. I durst my Lord, to wager she is honest,
Lay downe my soule at stake: if you thinke other,
Remoue your thought, it doth abuse your bosome,
If any wretch ha put this in your head,
Let heauens requite it with the Serpents curse.
2705For if she be not honest, chaste, and true,
There's no man happy, the purest of her Sex
Is foule as slander.
Exit Emillia.
Oth. Bid her come hither, goe,
She sayes enough, yet she's a simple bawde,
2710That cannot say as much: this is a subtle whore,
A closet, locke and key, of villainous secrets
And yet shee'll kneele and pray, I ha seene her do't.
Enter Desdemona and Emillia.
Des. My Lord, what is your will?
2715Oth. Pray chucke come hither.
Des. What is your pleasure?
Oth. Let me see your eyes --looke in my face.
Des. What horrible fancy's this?
Oth. Some of your function mistrisse,
2720Leaue procreants alone, and shut the dore,
Coffe, or cry hem, if any body come,
Your mistery, your mistery: nay dispatch.
Exit Em.
Des. Vpon my knees, what does your speech import?
I vnderstand a fury in your words,
2724.1But not the words.
2725Oth. Why, what art thou?
Des. Your wife my Lord, your true and loyall wife.
Oth. Come, sweare it, dam thy selfe,
Least being like one of heauen, the diuells themselues
Should feare to cease thee, therefore be double dambd.
Sweare thou art honest.
Des. Heauen doth truely know it.
Oth. Heauen truely knowes, that thou art false as hell.
Des. To whom, my Lord, with whom? how am I false?
2735Oth. O Desdemona, away, away, away.
Des. Alas the heauy day, why do you weepe?
Am I the occasion of those teares my Lord?
If haply you my father doe suspect,
An Instrument of this your calling backe,
2740Lay not your blame on me; if you haue left him,
Why I haue left him too.
Oth. Had it pleas'd heauen
To try me with affliction, had he ram'd
All kinds of sores, and shames on my bare head,
2745Steep'd me in pouerty, to the very lips,
Giuen to captiuity, me and my hopes,
I should haue found in some part of my soule
A drop of patience; but alas, to make me
A fixed figure, for the time of scorne,
2750To point his slow vnmouing fingers at -- oh, oh,
Yet could I beare that too, well, very well.
But there: where I haue garner'd vp my heart,
Where either I must liue, or beare no life,
The fountaine, from the which my currant runnes,
2755Or else dryes vp, to be discarded thence,
Or keepe it as a Cesterne, for foule Toades
To knot and gender in: turne thy complexion there,
Patience thy young and rose-lip'd Cherubin,
I here looke grim as Hell.
2760Des. I hope my noble Lord esteemes me honest.
Oth. O I, as summers flies, are in the shambles,
That quicken euen with blowing:
O thou blacke weede, why art so louely faire?
Thou smell'st so sweete, that the sence akes at thee,
2765Would thou hadst ne're bin borne.
Des. Alas, what ignorant sinne haue I committed?
Oth. Was this faire paper, this most goodly booke,
Made to write whore on? --- What, committed?
Heauen stops the nose at it, and the Moone winkes,
The bawdy wind, that kisses all it meetes,
2775Is husht within the hallow mine of earth,
And will not hear't: -- what committed, - impudent strumpet.
Des. By heauen you doe me wrong.
Oth. Are not you a strumpet?
Des. No, as I am a Christian:
2780If to preserue this vessell for my Lord,
From any hated foule vnlawfull touch,
Be not to be a strumpet, I am none.
Oth. What, not a whore?
Des. No, as I shall be saued.
Enter Emillia.
2785Oth. Ist possible?
Des. O heauen forgiuenesse.
Oth. I cry you mercy,
I tooke you for that cunning whore of Venice,
That married with Othello: you mistresse,
That haue the office opposite to S. Peter,
And keepes the gates in hell, I, you, you, you;
We ha done our course; there's money for your paines,
I pray you turne the key, and keepe our counsell.
Exit.
2795Em. Alas, what does this Gentleman conceiue?
How doe you Madam, how doe you my good Lady?
Des. Faith halfe asleepe.
Em. Good Madam, what's the matter with my Lord?
2800Des. With who?
Em. Why with my Lord Madam.
Des. I ha none, doe not talke to me Emillia,
2805I cannot weepe, nor answer haue I none,
But what should goe by water: preethee to night
Lay on my bed our wedding sheetes, remember,
And call thy husband hither.
Em. Here is a change indeed.
Exit.
2810Des. Tis meete I should be vsde so, very well;
How haue I bin behau'd, that he might sticke
The smallest opinion, on my greatest abuse.
Iag. What is your pleasure Madam,
Enter Iago,
2815How ist with you?
Des. I cannot tell: those that doe teach young babes
Doe it with gentle meanes, and easie taskes,
He might ha chid me so, for in good faith,
I am a child at chiding.
2820Iag. What is the matter Lady?
Em. Alas Iago, my Lord hath so bewhor'd her,
Throwne such despite, and heauy termes vpon her,
As true hearts cannot beare.
Des. Am I that name Iago?
2825Iag. What name faire Lady?
Des. Such as she sayes my Lord did say I was?
Em. He call'd her whore: A begger in his drinke,
Could not haue layed such tearmes vpon his Callet.
Iag. Why did he so?
2830Des. I doe not know, I am sure I am none such.
Iag. Doe not weepe, doe not weepe: alas the day.
Em. Has she forsooke so many noble matches,
Her Father, and her Countrey, all her friends,
To be cald whore? would it not make one weepe?
2835Des. It is my wretched fortune.
Iag. Beshrew him for it; how comes this tricke vpon him?
Des. Nay, heauen doth know.
Em. I will be hang'd, if some eternall villaine,
2840Some busie and insinuating rogue,
Some cogging, cousening slaue, to get some office,
Haue not deuisde this slander, I'le be hang'd else.
Iag. Fie, there is no such man, it is impossible.
Des. If any such there be, heauen pardon him.
2845Em. A halter pardon him, and hell gnaw his bones:
Why should he call her whore? who keepes her company?
What place, what time, what forme, what likelihood?
The Moore's abus'd by some outragious knaue:
Some base notorious knaue, some scuruy fellow,
O heauen, that such companions thoudst vnfold,
And put in euery honest hand a whip,
2855To lash the rascall naked through the world,
Euen from the East to the West.
Iag. Speake within dores.
Em. O fie vpon him; some such squire he was,
That turnd your wit, the seamy side without,
2860And made you to suspect me with the Moore.
Iag. You are a foole, goe to.
Des. O Good Iago,
VVhat shall I doe to win my Lord againe?
Good friend goe to him, for by this light of heauen,
2865I know not how I lost him.
Iag. I pray you be content, tis but his humour,
2880The businesse of the State does him offence,
2880.1And he does chide with you.
Des. If t'were no other.
Iag. Tis but so, I warrant you,
Harke how these Instruments summon you to supper,
And the great Messengers of Venice stay,
2885Goe in, and weepe not, all things shall be well.
Exit women.
How now Roderigo?
Enter Roderigo.
Rod. I doe not finde that thou dealst iustly with me.
Iag. VVhat in the contrary?
Rod. Euery day, thou dofftst me, with some deuise Iago;
And rather, as it seemes to me, thou keepest from me,
All conueniency, then suppliest me, with the least
2895Aduantage of hope: I will indeed no longer indure it,
Nor am I yet perswaded to put vp in peace, what already
I haue foolishly sufferd.
Iag. Will you heare me Roderigo?
Rod. Faith I haue heard too much, for your words,
2900And performance are no kin together.
Iag. You charge me most vniustly.
Rod. I haue wasted my selfe out of meanes: the Iewels you haue
had from me, to deliuer to Desdemona, would halfe haue corrupted
2905a Votarist: you haue told me she has receiu'd em, and return'd mee
expectation, and comforts, of suddaine respect, and acquittance, but
I finde none.
Iag. Well, goe to, very good.
Rod. Very well, goe to, I cannot goe to man, it is not very well,
2910by this hand, I say tis very scuruy, and begin to finde my selfe fopt
in it.
Iag. Very well.
Rod. I say it is not very well: I will make my selfe knowne to
Desdemona, if she will returne me my Iewels, I will giue ouer my
2915suite, and repent my vnlawfull sollicitation, if not, assure your selfe
I'le seeke satisfaction of you.
Iag. You haue said now.
Rod. I, and I haue said nothing, but what I protest entendment
2920of doing.
Iag. Why now I see there's mettle in thee, and euen from this
time doe build on thee, a better opinion then euer before, giue me
thy hand Roderigo: Thou hast taken against me a most iust concep-
2925tion, but yet I protest, I haue delt most directly in thy affaires.
Rod. It hath not appeared.
Iag. I grant indeed it hath not appear'd, and your suspition is
not without wit and iudgement: But Roderigo, if thou hast that
2930within thee indeed, which I haue greater reason to beleeue now,
then euer, I meane purpose, courage, and valour, this night shew it, if
thou the next night following enioyest not Desdemona, take mee
from this world with treachery, and deuise engines for my life.
Rod. Well, is it within reason and compasse?
Iag. Sir, there is especiall command come from Venice,
To depute Cassio in Othello's place.
2940Rod. Is that true? why then Othello and Desdemona
Returne againe to Venice.
Iag. O no, he goes into Mauritania, and takes away with him
The faire Desdemona, vnlesse his abode be linger'd
Here by some accident, wherein none can be so
2945determinate, as the remouing of Cassio.
Rod. How doe you meane remouing of him?
Iag. Why, by making him vncapable of Othello's place,
Knocking out his braines.
2950Rod. And that you would haue me to doe.
Iag. I, and if you dare doe your selfe a profit, and right, hee sups
to night with a harlot, and thither will I goe to him; --- he knowes
not yet of his honourable fortune: if you will watch his going
thence, which I will fashion to fall out betweene twelue and one,
you may take him at your pleasure: I will be neere to second your
attempt, and hee shall fall betweene vs: come, stand not amaz'd
at it, but goe along with mee, I will shew you such a necessity in his
death, that you shall thinke your selfe bound to put it on him. It is
now high supper time, and the night growes to wast: about it.
Enter Othello, Desdemona, Lodouico, Emillia,
and Attendants.
Rod. I will heare further reason for this.
Iag. And you shall be satisfied.
Ex. Iag. and Rod.