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Rod. Yes, that I did; but that was but courtesy.
Iago. Lechery, by this hand; an index, and obscure prologue' to the history of lust and foul thoughts. They met so near with their lips, that their breaths embraced together. Villainous thoughts, Roderigo! when these mutualities' 'so marshal the way, hard at hand comes the master and main⚫ exercise, the incorporate conclusion. Pish!-But, sir, be you ruled by me: I have brought you from Venice. Watch you to-night; for the command, I'll lay't upon you: Cassio knows you not :-I'll not be far from you: do you find some occasion to anger Cassio, either by speaking too loud, or tainting his discipline; or from what other course you please, which the time shall more favourably minister.
Iago. Sir, he is rash, and very sudden in choler, and, haply, with his truncheon may strike at you: provoke him, that he may; for even out of that will I cause these of Cyprus to mutiny, whose qualification shall come into no true taste again, but by the displanting of Cassio. So shall you have a shorter journey to your desires, by the means I shall 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.
Iago. That Cassio loves her, I do well believe it;
But partly led to diet my revenge,
- an INDEX, and OBSCURE prologue] Respecting "index," see " Hamlet," A. iii. sc. 4, Vol. v. p. 555. The 4to, 1622, omits "obscure ;" and "villainous thoughts" lower down.
when these MUTUALITIES] The folio misprints "mutualities" of the 4tos, mutabilities; and in Iago's next speech it omits "with his truncheon."
6 or from what other COURSE you please,] The corr. fo. 1632 alters "course to cause, but not with such necessity as to warrant us in deviating from the received text.
For that I do suspect the lustful Moor'
That judgment cannot cure.
Which thing to do,
If this poor brach of Venice, whom I trash'
For his quick hunting, stand the putting on,-
Abuse him to the Moor in the rank garb',
For I fear Cassio with my night-cap too;
Make the Moor thank me, love me, and reward me,
And practising upon his peace and quiet,
Even to madness. 'Tis here, but yet confus'd:
Enter a Herald, with a proclamation: People following.
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
the LUSTFUL Moor] So both the 4tos: the folio, lusty.
8 Till I am EVEN'D with him,] "Even'd" is the reading of the folio, and of the 4to, 1630: the 4to, 1622, has even.
9 If this poor BRACH of Venice, whom I TRASH] So the corr. fo. 1632, and so far it agrees with Warburton's suggestion to substitute "brach" for trash of the old copies: the emendation of "trash," at the end of the line, for trace of the folio, 1623, and crush of the 4to, 1622, is not equally required, since “trash" and trace were used somewhat synonymously, as a mode of keeping back braches, i. e. dogs, who hunted too quickly. Iago speaks of Roderigo as a poor hound, who was so eager in the chase, that it was necessary to restrain him: nevertheless the Rev. Mr. Dyce is for trash, instead of "brach," against, as we think, the most evident probability see "Remarks," p. 237.
- in the RANK garb,] So both the 4tos: the folio, "the right garb."
2 Enter a Herald,] He is called "Othello's Herald" in the folio, and in the 4to, 1630.
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; 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!
A Hall in the Castle.
Enter OTHELLO, DESDEMONA, CASSIO, and Attendants.
Oth. Good Michael, look you to the guard to-night : 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
Michael, good night: to-morrow, with your 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.—
[Exeunt ОTH., DES., and Attendants.
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.
his ADDICTION leads him ;] The 4to, 1622, "his mind leads him." In
the next line both the 4tos. have "nuptials " for nuptial of the folio.
of feasting,] These words are wanting in the two 4tos.
CAST us thus early] i. e. In the phraseology of the time, dismissed, or cast us off thus early. This is Steevens's explanation, and it is right.
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 alarum 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. Oh! 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 weakness with any more.
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.
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 outward,
To Desdemona hath to-night carous'd
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 drunkards, Am I to put our Cassio in some action
That may offend the isle.-But here they come.
6 a parley or provocation.] The folio alone has “parley to provocation.”
7 IS IT not an alarum to love?] The 4tos. put it affirmatively, "'tis an alarum to love."
Three LADS of Cyprus,] Thus both the 4tos: the folio, "Three else of Cyprus," meaning, perhaps, "Three elves, or elfs, of Cyprus," as indeed we find it amended in the corr. fo. 1632.
If consequence do but approve my dream,
My boat sails freely, both with wind and stream.
Re-enter CASSIO, with him MONTANO, and Gentlemen. 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. I learned it in England, where, indeed, they are most potent in potting; your Dane, your German, and your swag-bellied Hollander,-Drink, ho!-are nothing to your Englishman.
Cas. Is your Englishman so exquisite in his drinking?
Iago. Why, he drinks you, with facility, your Dane dead drunk; he sweats not to overthrow your Almain; he gives your Hollander a vomit, ere the next pottle can be filled. Cas. To the health of our general!
Mon. I am for it, lieutenant; and I'll do you justice.
King Stephen was a worthy peer',
His breeches cost him but a crown;
He held them sixpence all too dear,
With that he call'd the tailor-lown.
they have given me a ROUSE already.] Respecting the word 'rouse," see Vol. v. p. 483. We have had the verb "carous'd" on the preceding page.
A life's but a span ;]
Thus both the 4tos. The folio reads— "Oh man's life's but a span."
- are nothing to your ENGLISHMAN.] It is only English in the 4tos. and folios, but Cassio's next inquiry, "Is your Englishman," &c. shows that we ought to read "Englishman" in Iago's speech: it is, besides, made " Englishman" in the corr. fo. 1632.
3 - SO EXQUISITE in his drinking?] In the folio, and in the 4to, 1630, the word is "exquisite:" in the 4to, 1622, expert.
King Stephen was a worthy peer,] The ballad, from which these two stanzas are quoted, is to be found entire in Percy's "Reliques," Vol. i. p. 208, edit. 1812. In Camden's "Remains," is a story respecting the breeches of William Rufus, but