Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Donald Bailey
Peer Reviewed

Othello (Folio 1, 1623)

the Moore of Venice. 319
presenr houre of fiue, till the Bell haue told eleuen.
Blesse the Isle of Cyprus, and our Noble Generall Othel-
lo. Exit.

1110Enter Othello, Desdemona, Cassio, and Attendants.
Othe. Good Michael, looke you to the guard to night.
Let's teach our selues that Honourable stop,
Not to out-sport discretion.
Cas. Iago, hath direction what to do.
1115But notwithstanding with my personall eye
Will I looke to't.
Othe. Iago, is most honest:
Michael, goodnight. To morrow with your earliest,
Let me haue speech with you. Come my deere Loue,
1120The purchase made, the fruites are to ensue,
That profit's yet to come 'tweene me, and you.
Goodnight. Exit.
Enter Iago.
Cas. Welcome Iago: we must to the Watch.
1125Iago. Not this houre Lieutenant: 'tis not yet ten
o'th'clocke. Our Generall cast vs thus earely for the
loue of his Desdemona: Who, let vs not therefore blame;
he hath not yet made wanton the night with her: and
she is sport for Ioue.
1130Cas. She's a most exquisite Lady.
Iago. And Ile warrant her, full of Game.
Cas. Indeed shes a most fresh and delicate creature.
Iago. What an eye she ha's?
Methinkes it sounds a parley to prouocation.
1135Cas. An inuiting eye:
And yet me thinkes right modest.
Iago. And when she speakes,
Is it not an Alarum to Loue?
Cas. She is indeed perfection.
1140Iago. Well: happinesse to their Sheetes. Come Lieu-
tenant, I haue a stope of Wine, and heere without are a
brace of Cyprus Gallants, that would faine haue a mea-
sure to the health of blacke Othello.
Cas. Not to night, good Iago, I haue very poore,
1145and vnhappie Braines for drinking. I could well wish
Curtesie would inuent some other Custome of enter-
Iago. Oh, they are our Friends: but one Cup, Ile
drinke for you.
1150Cassio. I haue drunke but one Cup to night, and that
was craftily qualified too: and behold what inouation
it makes heere. I am infortunate in the infirmity, and
dare not taske my weakenesse with any more.
Iago. What man? 'Tis a night of Reuels, the Gal-
1155lants desire it.
Cas. Where are they?
Iago. Heere, at the doore: I pray you call them in.
Cas. Ile do't, but it dislikes me. Exit.
Iago. If I can fasten but one Cup vpon him
1160With that which he hath drunke to night alreadie,
He'l be as full of Quarrell, and offence
As my yong Mistris dogge.
Now my sicke Foole Rodorigo,
Whom Loue hath turn'd almost the wrong side out,
1165To Desdemona hath to night Carrows'd.
Potations, pottle-deepe; and he's to watch.
Three else of Cyprus, Noble swelling Spirites,
(That hold their Honours in a wary distance,
The very Elements of this Warrelike Isle)
1170Haue I to night fluster'd with flowing Cups,
And they Watch too.

Now 'mongst this Flocke of drunkards
Am I put to our Cassio in some Action
That may offend the Isle. But here they come.

1175Enter Cassio, Montano, and Gentlemen.
If Consequence do but approue my dreame,
My Boate sailes freely, both with winde and Streame.
Cas. 'Fore heauen, they haue giuen me a rowse already.
Mon. Good-faith a litle one: not past a pint, as I am a
Iago. Some Wine hoa.
And let me the Cannakin clinke, clinke:
And let me the Cannakin clinke.
A Souldiers a man: Oh, mans life's but a span,
1185Why then let a Souldier drinke.
Some Wine Boyes.
Cas. 'Fore Heauen: an excellent Song.
Iago. I learn'd it in England: where indeed they are
most potent in Potting. Your Dane, your Germaine,
1190and your swag-belly'd Hollander, (drinke hoa) are
nothing to your English.
Cassio. Is your Englishmen so exquisite in his drin-
Iago. Why, he drinkes you with facillitie, your Dane
1195dead drunke. He sweates not to ouerthrow your Al-
maine. He giues your Hollander a vomit, ere the next
Pottle can be fill'd.
Cas. To the health of our Generall.
Mon. I am for it Lieutenant: and Ile do you Iustice.
1200Iago. Oh sweet England.
King Stephen was and-a worthy Peere,
His Breeches cost him but a Crowne,
He held them Six pence all to deere,
With that he cal'd the Tailor Lowne:
1205He was a wight of high Renowne,
And thou art but of low degree:
'Tis Pride that pulls the Country downe,
And take thy awl'd Cloake about thee.
Some Wine hoa.
1210Cassio. Why this is a more exquisite Song then the o-
Iago. Will you heare't againe?
Cas. No: for I hold him to be vnworthy of his Place,
that do's those things. Well: heau'ns aboue all: and
1215there be soules must be saued, and there be soules must
not be saued.
Iago. It's true, good Lieutenant.
Cas. For mine owne part, no offence to the Generall,
nor any man of qualitie: I hope to be saued.
1220Iago. And so do I too Lieutenant.
Cassio. I: (but by your leaue) not before me. The
Lieutenant is to be saued before the Ancient. Let's haue
no more of this: let's to our Affaires. Forgiue vs our
sinnes: Gentlemen let's looke to our businesse. Do not
1225thinke Gentlemen, I am drunke: this is my Ancient, this
is my right hand, and this is my left. I am not drunke
now: I can stand well enough, and I speake well enough.
Gent. Excellent well.
Cas. Why very well then: you must not thinke then,
1230that I am drunke. Exit.
Monta. To th'Platforme (Masters) come, let's set the
Iago. You see this Fellow, that is gone before,
He's a Souldier, fit to stand by Caesar,
1235And giue direction. And do but see his vice,
'Tis to his vertue, a iust Equinox,
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