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Gra. What is the matter?
Emil. Disprove this, villain, if thou beest 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.
Emil. But did you ever tell him she was false?
Emil. 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.1
Emil. I will not charm my tongue; I am bound to speak;
My mistress here lies murdered in her bed.2
All. O Heavens forefend!
Emil. And your reports have set the murder on.
Mon. O monstrous act!
Iago. What, are you mad? I charge you, get you
Emil. Good gentlemen, let me have leave to speak; 'Tis proper I obey him, but not now.—
Perchance, Iago, I will ne'er go home.
Oth. O! O! O!
[Hanging over his wife.
Emil. Nay, lay thee down, and roar; For thou hast killed the sweetest innocent, That e'er did lift up eye.
1 To charm is to conjure, to enchant, to lay or still as with a charm. 2 This line, and the six following speeches, are wanting in the first quarto.
3 That is, at the instant when she gave Desdemona's handkerchief to
O, she was foul!-[Rising. I scarce did know you, uncle. There lies your niece, Whose breath, indeed, these hands have newly stopped. I know this act shows horrible and grim.
Gra. Poor Desdemona! 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.1
Oth. 'Tis pitiful: but yet Iago knows That she with Cassio hath the act of shame
A thousand times committed.2 Cassio confessed it;
Emil. O heaven! O heavenly powers!
No, I will speak as liberal3 as the air;
Let Heaven, and men, and devils, let them all,
I will not.
[IAGO offers to stab his wife.
Your sword upon a woman?
Emil. O thou dull Moor! that handkerchief thou
I found by fortune, and did give my husband;
1 The first and the second folio both read reprobance.
2 Dr. Johnson thinks that this and other passages in the play seem to suppose a longer space comprised in the action of this play than the scene includes.
3 The folio reads
"I'll be in speaking liberal as the north;"
the quarto 1622 "liberal as the air." The text is formed out of the two copies. Liberal here means free.
For often, with a solemn earnestness,
Filth, thou liest. By Heaven, I do not; I do not, gentlemen ; O murderous coxcomb! what should such a fool Do with so good a wife?
[IAGO stabs EMILIA, then runs out. Oth. Are there no stones in heaven, But what serve for the thunder?-Precious villain! Gra. The woman falls; sure, he has killed his wife. Emil. Ay, ay; O, lay me by my mistress' side! Gra. He's gone, but his wife's killed.
Mon. 'Tis a notorious villain. Take you this
Which I have here recovered from the Moor.
[Exeunt MONTANO and GRATIANO.
Emil. What did thy song bode, lady?
Oth. I have another weapon in this chamber; It is a sword of Spain, the ice-brook's temper; 2 O, here it is.-Uncle, I must come forth.
1 The meaning appears to be:-"Has not heaven one supernumerary bolt, to hurl directly at the head of this atrocious villain ?"
2 The particular name of the ice-brook may be determined from several passages in Martial. (See lib. i. ep. 50, lib. iv. ep. 55.) It was probably
Gra. [Within.] If thou attempt it, it will cost thee dear;
Thou hast no weapon, and perforce must suffer.
Oth. Look in upon me, then, and speak with me, Or, naked as I am, I will assault thee.
Gra. What is the matter?
Behold! I have a weapon;
A better never did itself sustain
pon a soldier's thigh. I have seen the day, That, with this little arm, and this good sword, I have made my way through more impediments Than twenty times your stop.-But, Ó, vain boast! Who can control his fate? 'tis not so now.Be not afraid, though you do see me weaponed; Here is my journey's end, here is my butt, And very seamark of my utmost sail. Do you go back dismayed? 'Tis a lost fear; Man but a rush against Othello's breast, And he retires; where should Othello go?— Now, how dost thou look now? O ill-starred wench!1 Pale as thy smock! when we shall meet at compt, This look of thine will hurl my soul from heaven, And fiends will snatch at it. Cold, cold, my girl? Even like thy chastity.O, cursed, cursed slave !-Whip me, ye devils, From the possession of this heavenly sight! Blow me about in winds! roast me in sulphur! Wash me in steep-down gulfs of liquid fire!— O Desdemona! Desdemona! dead? Dead? O! O! O!
the brook or rivulet called Salo (now Xalon), near Bilbilis in Celtiberia. In this the Spaniards plunged all their swords and other weapons while hot from the forge; and to the icy quality of the waters thay were supposed to be indebted for their stubborn temper.
1 This and the six preceding lines are omitted in the first quarto. Wench originally signified only a girl or young woman.
Enter LODOVICO, MONTANO, CASSIO, carried in a chair, and Officers, with IAGO, prisoner.
Lod. Where is this rash and most unfortunate man?
If that thou be'st a devil, I cannot kill thee.
I bleed, sir; but not killed. Oth. I am not sorry, neither; I'd have thee live; For, in my sense, 'tis happiness to die.
Lod. Ŏ thou Othello, that was once so good,
Lod. This wretch hath part confessed his villany. Did you and he consent in Cassio's death?
Cas. Dear general, I never gave you cause. Oth. I do believe it; and I ask your pardon. Will you, I pray you, demand that demi-devil, Why he hath thus ensnared my soul and body?
lago. Demand me nothing. What you know, you
From this time forth I never will speak word.
Torments will ope your lips.
Oth. Well, thou dost best.
Lod. Sir, you shall understand what hath befallen,
Which, as I think, you know not.
1 To see if, according to the common opinion, his feet be cloven. 2 In the snare, by the stratagem.