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then have to prefer them ;* and the impediment most profitably removed, without the which there were no expectation of our prosperity.

Rod. I will do this, if I can bring it to any opportunity

Iago. I warrant thee. Meet me by and by at the citadel : I must fetch his necessaries ashore. Farewell. Rod. Adieu.

[Exit. Iago. That Cassio loves her, I do well believe it; That she loves him, 'tis apt, and of great credit: The Moor-how beit that I endure him not, Is of a constant, loving, noble nature ; And, I dare think, he'll prove to Desdemona A most dear husband. Now I do love her too; Not out of absolute lust, (though, peradventure, I stand accountant for as great a sin,) But partly led to diet my revenge, For that I do suspect the lusty Moor Hath leap'd into my seat: the thought whereof Doth, like a poisonous mineral, gnaw my inwards; And nothing can or shall content my soul, Till I am even with him, wife for wife; Or, failing so, yet that I put the Moor At least into a jealousy so strong That judgment cannot cure. Which thing to do, If this poor trash of Venice, whom I trash For his quick hunting, stand the putting on, I'll have our Michael Cassio on the hip; Abuse him to the Moor in the rank garb, –

to prefer them ;] i. e. to advance them. s If this poor trash of Venice, whom I trash-] To trash, is still a hunter's phrase, and signifies to fasten a weight on the neck of a dog, when his speed is superior to that of his companions.

6- in the rank garb,] i. e. grossly, without mincing the matter,

For I fear Cassio with my night-cap too ;
Make the Moor thank me, love me, and reward me,
For making him egregiously an ass,
And practising upon his peace and quiet
Even to madness. 'Tis here, but yet confus'd ?
Knavery's plain face is never seen, till us’d.



A Street.

Enter a Herald, with a Proclamation ; People fol

lowing: Her. It is Othello's pleasure, our noble and valiant general, that, upon certain tidings now arrived, importing the mere perdition of the Turkish fleet, every man put himself into triumph: some to dance, some to make bonfires, each man to what sport and revels his addiction leads him ; for, besides these beneficial news, it is the celebration of his nuptials : So much was his pleasure should be proclaimed. All offices are open ;o and there is full liberty of feasting, from this present hour of five, till the bell hath told eleven. Heaven bless the isle of Cyprus, and our noble general, Othello!


? Knavery's plain face is never seen, ] An honest man acts upon a plan, and forecasts his designs; but a knave depends upon temporary and local opportunities, and never knows his own purpose, but at the time of execution. JOHNSON.

8 — mere-] Mere in this place signifies entire.

9 All offices are open ;] i. e. all rooms, or places, in the castle, at which refreshments are prepared, or served out.


A Hall in the Castle.

Enter OTHELLO, DESDEMONA, CAssIo, and Atten

dants. Oth. Good Michael, look you to the guard to

Let's teach ourselves that honourable stop,
Not to out-sport discretion.

Cas. Iago hath direction what to do;
But, notwithstanding, with my personal eye
Will I look to't.

Iago is most honest.
Michael, good night: To-morrow, with our earliest,
Let me have speech with you. Come, my dear love,
The purchase made, the fruits are to ensue;

[To DESDEMONA. That profit's yet to come 'twixt me and you. Good night.

[Exeunt Oth. Des. and Attend.

Enter IAGO. Cas. Welcome, Iago : We must to the watch.

Iago. Not this hour, lieutenant ; 'tis not yet ten o'clock: Our general cast us' thus early, for the love of his Desdemona; whom let us not therefore blame; he hath not yet made wanton the night with her: and she is sport for Jove.

Cas. She's a most exquisite lady.
Iago. And, I'll warrant her, full of game.

Cas. Indeed, she is a most fresh and delicate creature.

1 Our general cast us -] Cast us means dismissed us, or got rid of our company.

Iago. What an eye she has ! methinks it sounds a parley of provocation.

Cas. An inviting eye; and yet methinks right modest.

Iago. And, when she speaks, is it not an alarm to love?

Cas. She is, indeed, perfection.

Iago. Well, happiness to their sheets! Come, lieutenant, I have a stoop of wine: and here without are a brace of Cyprus gallants, that would fain have a measure to the health of the black Othello.

Cas. Not to-night, good Iago; I have very poor and unhappy brains for drinking: I could well wish courtesy would invent some other custom of entertainment.

Iago. O, they are our friends ; but one cup: I'll drink for you.

Cas. I have drunk but one cup to-night, and that was craftily qualified? too, and, behold, what innovation it makes here : I am unfortunate in the infirmity, and dare not task my weakness with any


Iago. What, man! 'tis a night of revels; the gallants desire it.

Cas. Where are they?
Iago. Here at the door; I pray you call them in.
Cas. I'll do't; but it dislikes me. [Exit Cassio.

Iago. If I can fasten but one cup upon him,
With that which he hath drunk to-night already,
He'll be as full of quarrel and offence
As my young mistress' dog. Now, my sick fool,

Roderigo, Whom love has turn'd almost the wrong side out

ward, To Desdemona hath to-night carous'd

- craftily qualified-] Slily mixed with water.

Potations pottle deep; and he's to watch:
Three lads of Cyprus,-noble swelling spirits,
That hold their honours in a wary distance,
The very elements of this warlike isle, -
Have I to-night fluster'd with flowing cups,
And they watch too. Now, 'mongst this flock of

Am I to put our Cassio in some action
That may offend the isle :- But here they come:
If consequence approve my dream,
My boat sails freely, both with wind and stream.

do but approve my

Re-enter Cassio, with him MONTANO, and Gen

tlemen. Cas. 'Fore heaven, they have given me a rouse already.

Mon. Good faith, a little one; not past a pint, as I am a Soldier.

Iago. Some wine, ho !

And let me the canakin clink, clink ; [Sings.
And let me the canakin clink :

A soldier's a man;

A life's but a span;
Why then, let a soldier drink.

Some-wine, boys !

[Wine brought in. Cas. 'Fore heaven, an excellent song:

Iago. I learned it in England, where indeed) they are most potent in potting: your Dane, your

3 The very elements-] As quarrelsome as the discordia semine rerum; as quick in opposition as fire and water.

1. If consequence do but approve my dream,] Every scheme subsisting only in the imagination may be term a dream.

given me a rouse, &c.] A rouse appears to be a quantity of liquor rather too large.

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