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I fear, the trust Othello puts him in,
On some odd time of his infirmity,
Will shake this island.

Mon.

But is he often thus?

Iago. 'Tis evermore the prologue to his sleep: He'll watch the horologe 42 a double set,

If drink rock not his cradle.

Mon.

It were well,

The general were put in mind of it.
Perhaps, he sees it not; or his good nature
Prizes the virtue that appears in Cassio,
And looks not on his evils; Is not this true?

Enter RODERIGO.

Iago. How now, Roderigo?

I pray you, after the lieutenant; go.

[Aside.

[Exit Roderigo.

Mon. And 'tis great pity, that the noble Moor Should hazard such a place, as his own second, With one of an ingraft infirmity:

It were an honest action, to say

So to the Moor.

Iago.

Not I, for this fair island:

I do love Cassio well; and would do much

To cure him of this evil.

But hark! what noise!

[Cry within,-Help! help!

Re-enter CASSIO, driving in RODERIGO.

Cas. You rogue! you rascal!

Mon. What's the matter, lieutenant?

Cas. A knave!-teach me my duty!

I'll beat the knave into a twiggen bottle 43.

[blocks in formation]

Iago. Away, I say! go out, and cry-a mutiny.

[Aside to Roderigo, who goes out.

Nay, good lieutenant,-alas, gentlemen,

Help, ho!-Lieutenant,-sir,-Montano,-sir;-
Help, masters!-Here's a goodly watch, indeed!

[Bell rings.

Who's that that rings the bell?-Diablo, ho!

The town will rise: God's will, lieutenant! hold;
You will be sham'd for ever.

Oth.

Enter OTHELLO, and Attendants.

What is the matter here?

44

Mon. I bleed still, I am hurt to the death; he

dies.

Oth. Hold, for your lives.

Tago. Hold, hold, lieutenant-sir, Montano,-gen

tlemen,

Have you forgot all sense of place and duty?

Hold, hold! the general speaks to you; hold, for

shame!

Oth. Why, how now, ho! from whence ariseth

this?

Are we turn'd Turks; and to ourselves do that,

Which heaven hath forbid the Ottomites?

For christian shame, put by this barbarous brawl:
He that stirs next to carve for his own rage,
Holds his soul light; he dies upon his motion.-
Silence that dreadful bell, it frights the isle
From her propriety.-What is the matter, mas-

ters?

Honest Iago, that look'st dead with grieving,
Speak, who began this? on thy love, I charge thee.
Iago. I do not know;-friends all but now, even

now,

In quarter, and in terms like bride and groom
Devesting them for bed: and then, but now,
(As if some planet had unwitted men,)
Swords out, and tilting one at other's breast,
In opposition bloody. I cannot speak
Any beginning to this peevish odds;
And 'would in action glorious I had lost
These legs, that brought me to a part of it!

Oth. How comes it, Michael, you are thus forgot?
Cas. I pray you, pardon me, I cannot speak.
Oth. Worthy Montano, you were wont be civil;
The gravity and stillness of your youth

The world hath noted, and your name is great

In mouths of wisest censure; What's the matter,
That you unlace your reputation thus,

45

And spend your rich opinion "5, for the name
Of a night-brawler? give me answer to it.

Mon. Worthy Othello, I am hurt to danger;

Your officer, lago, can inform you—

While I spare speech, which something now offends

me,

Of all that I do know: nor know I aught
By me that's said or done amiss this night;
Unless self-charity be sometime a vice;

And to defend ourselves it be a sin,

When violence assails us.

Oth.

Now, by heaven,

My blood begins my safer guides to rule;

And passion, having my best judgement collied 46,
Assays to lead the way: If I once stir,

Or do but lift this arm, the best of you
Shall sink in my rebuke. Give me to know
How this foul rout began, who set it on;
And he that is approv'd in this offence,
Though he had twinn'd with me, both at a birth,
Shall lose me.-What! in a town of war,
Yet wild, the people's hearts brimful of fear,
To manage private and domestick quarrel,
'In night, and on the court and guard of safety!
'Tis monstrous.-Iago, who began it?

Mon. If partially affin'd, or leagu'd in office,

Thou dost deliver more or less than truth,

Thou art no soldier.

Iugo.

Touch me not so near:

I had rather have this tongue cut from my mouth,
Than it should do offence to Michael Cassio;
Yet, I persuade myself, to speak the truth

Shall nothing wrong him.-Thus it is, general.
Montano and myself being in speech,

There comes a fellow, crying out for help;
And Cassio following him with determin'd sword,
To execute upon him: Sir, this gentleman
Steps in to Cassio, and entreats his pause;
Myself the crying fellow did pursue,
Lest, by his clamour, (as it so fell out,)

The town might fall in fright: he, swift of foot,
Outran my purpose; and I return'd the rather
For that I heard the clink and fall of swords,
And Cassio high in oath; which, till to-night,
I ne'er might say before: When I came back,
(For this was brief,) I found them close together,
At blow, and thrust; even as again they were,
When you yourself did part them.

More of this matter can I not report :

But men are men; the best sometimes forget:-
Though Cassio did some little wrong to him,-
As men in rage strike those that wish them best,—
Yet, surely, Cassio, I believe, receiv'd,
From him that fled, some strange indignity,
Which patience could not pass.

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