Page images

A drop of patience : but (alas !) to make me
A fixed figure, for the time of scorn
To point his slow unmoving finger at,-
O! O!
Yet could I bear that too; well, very well :
But there, where I have garner'd up my heart,
Where either I must live, or bear no life;
The fountain from the which my current runs,
Or else dries up; to be discarded thence !
Or keep it as a cistern, for foul toads
To knot and gender in !-turn thy complexion there !
Patience, thou young and rose lipp'd cherubin;
Ay, there, look grim as hell !

Des. I hope, my noble lord esteems me honest.

Oth. O, ay; as summer flies are in the shambles, That quicken even with blowing. O thou weed, Who art so lovely fair, and smell'st so sweet, That the sense aches at thee-'Would, thou had'st

ne'er been born! Des. Alas, what ignorant sin have I committed ?

Oth. Was this fair paper, this most goodly book, Made to write whore upon! What committed ! Committed !- thou public commoner ! I should make very forges of my cheeks, That would to cinders burn up modesty, Did I but speak thy deeds.-What committed ! Heaven stops the nose at it, and the moon winks; The bawdy wind, that kisses all it meets, Is hush'd within the hollow mine of earth, And will not hear it: What committed !Impudent strumpet !

Des. By heaven, you do me wrong.

Oth. Are not you a strumpet ?

Des. No, as I am a christian :
If to preserve this vessel for my lord,
From any other foul unlawful touch,
Be-not to be a strumpet, I am none.

Oth. What, not a whore ?
Des. No, as I shall be saved.
Oth. Is it possible ?
Des. O, heaven forgive us !

Oth. I cry you mercy, then ;
I took you for that cunning whore of Venice,
That married with Othello.-You, mistress,

Re-enter EMILIA. That have the office opposite to Saint Peter, And keep the gate of hell ; You ! you ! ay, you ! We have done our course; there's money for your

pains; I pray you, turn the key, and keep our counsel.

[Erit. Emil. Alas, what does this gentleman conceive ?How do you, madam? how do you, my good lady?

Des. 'Faith, half asleep.
Emil. Good madam, what's the matter with

lord ?
Des. With who?
Emil. Why, with my lord, madam.
Des. Who is thy lord ?
Emil. He that is yours, sweet lady.

Des. have Do not talk to me, Emilia ;
I cannot weep; nor answer I have none,
But what should go by water. Pr’ythee, to-night


none :

Lay on my bed my wedding sheets,-remember ;-
And call thy husband hither.
Emil. Here is a change, indeed !

Des. 'Tis meet I should be us’d so, very meet.
How have I been behav'd that he might stick
The small'st opinion on my great’st abuse?

Re-enter EMILIA, with Iago. Iago. What is your pleasure, madam ? How is it

with you?

Des. I cannot tell. Those, that do teach young

Do it with gentle means, and easy tasks :
He might have chid me so; for, in good faith,
I am a child to chiding.

Iago. What's the matter, lady?

Emil. Alas, Iago, my lord hath so bewhor'd her,
Thrown such despite and heavy terms upon her,
As true hearts cannot bear.

Des. Am I that name, Iago ?
Iago. What name, fair lady?
Des. Such as, she says, my lord did say I

Emil. He call'd her, whore ; a beggar, in his drink, Could not have laid such terms upon his callet.

Iago. Why did he so?
Des. I do not know; I am sure,


am none such. Iago. Do not weep, do not weep; Alas, the day!

Emil. Has she forsook so many noble matches, , Her father, and her country, and her friends, To be call'd--whore? would it not make one weep?

Des. It is my wretched fortune. lago. Beshrew him for it!



How comes this trick upon him?

Des. Nay, heaven doth know.

Emil. I will be hang'd, if some eternal villain,
Some busy and insinuating rogue,
Some cogging cozening slave, to get some office,
Have not devis'd this slander; I'll be hang'd else.

Iago. Fye, there is no such man; it is impossible.
Des. If any such there be, heaven pardon him!
Emil. A halter pardon him! and hell gnaw bis

bones! Why should he call her, whore? who keeps her com


What place? what time? what form ? what likeli

The Moor’s abus'd by some most villainous knave,
Some base notorious knave, some scurvy fellow :-
O, heaven, that such companions thoud'st unfold ;
And put in every honest hand a whip,
To lash the rascal naked through the world,
Even from the east to the west !

Iago. Speak within door.

Emil. O, fye upon him! some such squire he was, That turn'd your wit the seamy side without, And made you to suspect me with the Moor.

Iago. You are a fool; go to.

Des. O good Iago, What shall I do to win my lord again? Good friend, go to him ; for, by this light of heaven, I know not how I lost him. Here I kneel: If e'er my will did trespass 'gainst his love, Either in discourse of thought, or actual deed ; Or that mine eyes, mine ears, or any sense,

Delighted them in any other form;
Or that I do not yet, and ever did,
And ever will,—though he do shake me off
To beggarly divorcement,--love him dearly,
Comfort forswear me! Unkindness may do much;
And his unkindness may defeat my life,
But never taint my love. I cannot say, whore;
It does abhor me, now I speak the word ;
To do the act that might the addition earn,
Not the world's mass of vanity could make me.

Iago. I pray you, be content; 'tis but his humour ;
The business of the state does him offence,
And he does chide with you.

Des. If 'twere no other,
Iago. It is but so, I warrant you.

Hark, how these instruments summon to supper !
And the great messengers of Venice stay :
Go in, and weep not; all things shall be well.

[Exeunt DESDEMONA and Emilia.

Enter Roderigo. How now, Roderigo ?

Rod. I do not find, that thou deal’st justly with me. Iago. What in the contrary?

Rod. Every day thou doff'st me with some device, Iago; and rather (as it seems to me now,) keep'st me from all conveniency, than suppliest me with the least advantage of hope. I will, indeed, no longer endure it: Nor am I yet persuaded, to put up in peace what already I have foolishly suffered.

Iago. Will you hear me, Roderigo ?
Rod. 'Faith, I have heard too much ; for your words,

[ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »