Cassio's a proper man: Let me see now;
To get his plače, and to plume up my will;
A double knavery,--How? how !--Let me see:-
After some time, to abuse Othello's ear,
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.
The Moor is of a free and open nature,
That thinks men honest, that but seem to be so;
And will as tenderly be led by the nose,
As asses are.
I have't;--it is engender’d:-Hell and night
Must bring this monstrous birth to the world's light.




SCENE I. A Sea-port Town in Cyprus. A


Enter MONTANO and Two Gentlemen. Mon. What from the cape can you discern at sea ? i Gent. Nothing at all: it is a high-wrought

flood; I cannot, 'twixt the heaven and the main, Descry a sail.

Mon. Methinks, the wind hath spoke aloud at


A fuller blast ne'er shook our battlements:
If it hath ruffian'd so upon the sea,
What ribs of oak, when mountains melt on them,
Can hold the mortise? what shall we hear of this?

2 Gent. A segregation of the Turkish fleet: For do but stand upon the foaming shore, The chiding billow seems to pelt the clouds;

The wind-shak'd surge, with high and monstrous

Seems to cast water on the burning bear,
And quench the guards of the ever-fixed pole:
I never did like molestation view
On th' enchafed flood.

If that the Turkish fleet Be not inshelter'd and embay'd, they are drown'd; It is impossible they bear it out.

Enter a third Gentleman.

3 Gent. News, lords! our wars are done;
The desperate tempest hath so bang’d the Turks,
That their designment halts: A noble ship of Venice
Hath seen a grievous wreck and sufferance
On most part of their fleet.

How! is this true?
3 Gent. The ship is here put in,
A Veronese; Michael Cassio,
Lieutenant to the warlike Moor, Othello,
Is come on shore: the Moor himself's at sea,
And is in full commission here for Cyprus.

Mon. I am glad on't; 'tis a worthy governor.
3 Gent. But this same Cassio,—though he speak

of comfort, Touching the Turkish loss,—yet he looks sadly, And prays the Moor be safe; for they were parted With foul and violent tempest. Mon.

'Pray heaven he be; For I have serv'd him, and the man commands Like a full soldier. Let's to the sea-side, ho! As well to see the vessel that's come in, As throw out our eyes for brave Othello;

9 And quench the guards of the ever-fixed pole:] Alluding to the star Arctophylax. · Like a full soldier.] Like a complete soldier.


Even till we make the main, and the aerial blue,
An indistinct regard.
3 Gent:

Come, let's do so;
For every minute is expectancy 3!:
Of more arrivance.

Enter Cassio.

Cas. Thanks to the valiant of this warlike isle,
That so approve the Moor; 0, let the heavens
Give him defence against the elements,
For I have lost him on a dangerous sea!

Mon. Is he well shipp'd ?

Cas. His bark is stoutly timber'd, and his pilot Of very expert and approv'd allowance;? Therefore my hopes, not surfeited to death, Stand in bold cure.

[Within.] A sail, a sail, a sail!


Enter another Gentleman.

[ocr errors]

Cas. What noise ?

4 Gent. The town is empty; on the brow.o'the sea Stand ranks of people, 'and they cry-a sail.

Cas. My hopes do shape him for the governour. 2 Gent. They do discharge their shot of courtesy:

[Guns heard. Our friends, at least. Cas..


pray you, sir, go forth, And give us truth who 'tis that is arriv'd.. 2 Gent. I shall.


[ocr errors]

? Of very expert and approv'd allowance;] Expert and approv'd allowance is put for allow'd and approv'd expertness. This mode of expression is not unfrequent in Shakspeare. 3 Therefore my hopes, not surfeited to death,

Stand in bold cure.] Presumptuous hopes, which have no foundation in probability, may poetically be said to surfeit themselves to death, or forward their own dissolution. To stand in bold cure, is to erect themselves in confidence of being fulfilled.

Mon. But, good lieutenant, is your general wird?

Cas. Most fortunately: he hath achiev'd a maid That paragons description, and wild fame; One that excels the quirks of blazoning pens, And in the essential vesture of creation, Does bear all excellency. -How now? who has put


Re-enter second Gentleman. 2 Gent. 'Tis one Iago, ancient to the general. Cas. He has had most favourable and happy

speed: Tempests themselves, high seas, and howling winds, The gutter'd rocks, and congregated sands, Traitors ensteep'd to clog the guiltless keel, As having sense of beauty, do omit Their mortal natures, letting go safely by The divine Desdemona. Mon.

What is she? Cas. She that I spake of, our great captain's

captain, Left in the conduct of the bold lago; Whose footing here anticipates our thoughts, A se'nnight's speed.-Great Jove, Othello guard, And swell his sail with thine own powerful breath; That he may bless this bay with his tall ship, Make love's quick pants in Desdemona's arms, Give renew'd fire to our extincted spirits, And bring all Cyprus comfort!-0, behold,

4 And in the essential vesture of creation,

Does bear all excellency.] The author seems to use essential, for existent, real. She excels, the praises of invention, says he, and in real qualities, with which creation has invested her, bears ull ercellency.

* Their mortal natures,] i. e. their deadly, destructive natures.

Enter Desdemona, Emilia, lago, RODERIGO,

and Attendants.


The riches of the ship is come on shore!
Ye men of Cyprus, let her have your knees:-
Hail to thee, lady! and the grace of heaven,
Before, behind thee, and on every hand,
Enwheel thee round !

I thank you, valiant Cassio.
What tidings can you tell me of my lord?

Cas. He is not yet arriv’d; nor know I aught But that he's well, and will be shortly here.

Des. O, but I fear ;--How lost you company?

Cas. The great contention of the sea and skies Parted our fellowship: But, hark! a sail.

[Cry within, À sail, a sail! Then Guns heard. 2 Gent. They give their greeting to the citadel; This likewise is a friend. Cas.

See for the news.

[Exit Gentleman. Good ancient, you are welcome; Welcome, mistress:

Let it not gall your patience, good Iago,
That I extend my manners; 'tis my breeding
That gives me this bold show of courtesy.

[Kissing her.
lago. Sir, would she give you so much of her lips,
As of her tongue she oft bestows on me,
You'd have enough.

Alas, she has no speech.
Iago. In faith, too much;
I find it still, when I have list to sleep:
Marry, before your ladyship, I grant,
She puts her tongue a little in her heart,
And chides with thinking,

You have little cause to say so..

« ElőzőTovább »