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SCENE II.- A Bedchamber : DESDEMONA in bed asleep.
A light burning,
Oth. It is the cause, it is the cause, my soul,-
Let me not name it to you, you chaste stars !-
It is the cause. Yet I'll not shed her blood;
Nor scar that whiter skin of hers than snow,
And smooth as monumental alabaster. | Takes off his sword.
Yet she must die, else she'll betray more men.
Put out the light, and then put out the light:*
If I quench thee, thou flaming minister,
I can again thy former light restore,
Should I repent me :-but once put out thine,
Thou cunning'st pattern of excelling nature,
I know not where is that Promethean heat,
That can thy light relume. When I have pluck’d thy rose,
I cannot give it vital life again,
It needs must wither :- I'll smell it on the tree.- [Kissing her.
O balmy breath, that dost almost persuade
Justice to break her sword !-One more, one more.-
Be thus when thou art dead, and I will kill thee,
And love thee after:-One more, and this the last:
So sweet was ne'er so fatal. I must weep,
But they are cruel tears: This sorrow's heavenly;
It strikes, where it doth love.-She wakes-
Des. Who's there? Othello?
Oth. Ay, Desdemona.
Des. Will you come to bed, my lord ?
Oth. Have you pray'd to-night, Desdemona ?
Des. Ay, my lord.
Oth. If you bethink yourself of any crime,
Unreconciled as yet to heaven and grace,
Solicit for it straight.
Des. Alas, my lord, what may you mean by that?
Oth. Well, do it, and be brief; I will walk by:
I would not kill thy unprepared spirit;
No,-Heaven forfend!t-I would not kill thy soul.
Des. Talk you of killing ?
Oth. Ay, I do.
Des. Then, heaven.
Have mercy on me!
Oth. Amen, with all my heart!
Des. If you say so, I hope you will not kill me.
Des. And yet I fear you: for you are fatal then,
When your eyes roll so : Why I should fear, I know not,
Since guiltiness I know not; but yet, I feel I fear.
Oth. Think on thy sins.
Des. They are loves I bear to you.
Oth. Ay, and for that thou diest.
* I. e. of life.
† Forbid. VOL. IV.
Des. That death 's unnatural, that kills for loving.--
Alas, why gnaw you so your nether lip ?
Some bloody passion shakes your very frame:
These are portents; but yet, I hope, I hope,
They do not point on me.
Oth. Peace, and be still!
Des. I will so: What's the matter?
Oth. That handkerchief, which I so loved, and gave thee,
Thou gav'st to Cassio.
Des. No, by my life and soul;
Send for the man, and ask him.
Oth. Sweet soul, take heed,
Take heed of perjury; thou’rt on thy death-bed.
Des. Ay, but not yet to die.
Oth. Yes, presently:
Therefore confess thee freely of thy sin;
For to deny each article with oath,
Cannot remove, nor choke, the strong conception,
That I do groan withal. Thou are to die.
Des. Then, Lord have mercy on me!
Oth. I say, amen.
Des. And have you mercy too!-I never did
Offend you in my life; never loved Cassio,
But with such general warranty of heaven
As I might love: I never gave him token.
Oth. By heaven, I saw my handkerchief in his hand.
O perjured woman! thou dost stone my heart,
And mak'st me call, what I intend to do,-
A murder, which I thought a sacrifice :*
I saw the handkerchief.
Des. He found it then;
I never gave it him :-Send for him hither,
And let him confess a truth.
Oth. He hath confess’d.
Des. What, my lord ?
Oth. That he hath-used thee.
Des. How? unlawfully ?
Des. He'll not say so.
Oth. No, his mouth is stopp'd ;
Honest Iago hath ta'en order for't.t
Des. My fear interprets then,- What, is he dead ?
Oth. Håd all his hairs been lives, my great revenge
Had stomach for them all.
Des. Alas! he is betray'd, and I undone.
Oth. Out, strumpet! Weep'st thou for him to my face ?
Des. O, banish me, my lord, kill me not.
Oth. Down, strumpet!
Des. Kill me to-morrow, let me live to-night.
Oth. Nay, if you strive,
Des. But half an hour.
* A sacrifice atoning for thy crime.
† Has taken measures.
Oth. Being done,
There is no pause.
Des. But while I say one prayer.
Oth. It is too late.
[He smothers her. Emil. [within]. My lord, my lord ! what, ho! my lord! my lord!
Oth. What noise is this ?-Not dead ? not yet quite dead?
I, that am cruel, am yet merciful;
I would not have thee linger in thy pain.-
Emil. [within). What ho! my lord, my lord !
Oth. Who's there?
Emil. [within]. O, good my lord, I would speak a word with you.
Oth. Yes ;—'tis Emilia :-by-and-by. She's dead.
'Tis like she comes to speak of Cassio's death:
The noise was high.-Ha! no more moving ?
Still as the grave. Shall she come in? Were't good ?
I think, she stirs again :-No.-What's the best ?
If she come in, she'll sure speak to my wife :
My wife! my wife ! what wife? I have no wife:
0, insupportable !, O heavy hour!
Methinks it should be now a huge eclipse
Of sun and moon; and that the affrighted globe
Should yawn at alteration.
Emil." (within]. I do beseech you I may speak with you,
O, good my lord.
Oth. I had forgot thee: 0, come in, Emilia :-
Soft-by-and-by :- Let me the curtains draw.-
Where art thou? What's the matter with thee now?
[Unlocks the door.
Emil. O, good my lord, yonder 's foul murder done.
Oth. What? now ?
Emil. But now, my lord.
Oth. It is the very error of the moon;
She comes more near the earth than she was wont;
And makes men mad.
Emil. Cassio, my lord, has kill'd a young Venetian,
Oth. Roderigo kilid! And Cassio kilid ?
Emil. No, Cassio is not kill'd.
Oth. Not Cassio killed ? Then murder's out of tune,
And sweet revenge grows harsh.
Des. O, falsely, falsely murder'd !
Emil. Alas! what cry is that ?
Oth. That! what?
Emil. Out, and alas ! that was my lady's voice :-
Help! help, ho! help!-O lady, speak again!
Sweet Desdemona! O, sweet mistress, speak!
Des. A guiltless death I die.
Emil. O, who hath done This deed ?
Des. Nobody; I myself; farewell: Commend me to my kind lord; 0, farewell.
[Dies. Oth. Why, how should she be murderd ? Emil. Alas, who knows? Oth. You heard her say herself, it was not I. Emil. She said so; I must needs report the truth.
Oth. She's, like a liar, gone to burning hell; 'Twas I that kill'd her.
Emil. O, the more angel she,
And you the blacker devil !
Oth. She turn'd to folly, * and she was a whore.
Emil. Thou dost belie her, and thou art a devil.
Oth. She was false as water.
Emil. Thou art rash as fire, to say
That she was false ; 0, she was heavenly true!
Oth. Cassio did tup her; ask thy husband else.
O, I were damn'd beneath all depth in hell,
But that I did proceed upon just grounds
To this extremity; Thy husband knew it all.
Emil. My husband?
Oth. Thy husband.
Emil. That she was false to wedlock ?
Oth. Ay, with Cassio.
Nay, had she been true,
If heaven would make me such another world
Of one entire and perfect chrysolite,
I'd not have sold her for it.
Emil. My husband ?
Oth. Ay, 'twas he that told me first;
An honest man he is, and hates the slime
That sticks on filthy deeds.
Emil. My husband ?
Oth. What needs this iterance, woman? I say, thy husband.
Emil. O mistress, villany hath made mocks with love !-
My husband say, that she was false?
Oth. He, woman;
I say, thy husband : Dost understand the word ?
My friend, thy husband, honest, honest Iago.
. If he say so, may his pernicious soul Rot half a grain a day! he lies to the heart; She was too fond of her most filthy bargain.
Emil. Do thy worst
This deed of thine is no more worthy heaven,
Than thou wast worthy her.
Oth. Peace, you were best.
Emil. Thou hast not half the power to do me harm,
As I have to be hurt. O gull! 0 dolt!
As ignorant as dirt! thou hast done a deed, -
I care not for thy sword; I'll make thee known,
Though I lost twenty lives :-Help! help! ho! help!
The Moor has kill'd my mistress; Murder ! murder!
Enter MONTANO, GRATIANO, and IAGO.
Mon. What is the matter ?-How now, general ?
Emil. O, are you come, Iago ? you have done well,
That men must lay their murders on your neck.
Gra. What is the matter?
Emil. Disprove this villain, if thou be'st a man:
He says, thou told'st him that his wife was false :
I know, thou didst not, thou’rt not such a villain;
Speak, for my heart is full.
Iago. I told him what I thought; and told no more
Than what he found himself was apt and true. ·
Emil. But did you ever tell him, she was false ?
Iago. I did.
Emil. You told a lie; an odious, damned lie;
Upon my soul, a lie; a'wicked lie:
She false with Cassio ?— Did you say with Cassio ?
Iago. With Cassio, mistress; Go to, charm your tongue.
Emil. I will not charm my tongue; I am bound to speak;
My mistress here lies murderd in her bed.
All. O heavens forfend !*
Emil. And your reports have set the murder on.
Oth. Nay, stare not, masters; it is true, indeed.
Gra. 'Tis a strange truth.
Mon. O monstrous act!
Emil. Villany, villany, villany!
I think upon't, I think - I smellt;-0 villany!
I thought so then; I'll kill myself for grief.-
O villany, villany!
Iago. What, are you mad ? I charge you, get you home.
Emil. Good gentlemen, let me have leave to speak;
'Tis proper I obey him, but not now :-
Perchance, Iago, I will ne'er go home.
Oth. O! O! O!
[Hanging over his wife.
Emil. Nay, lay thee down and roar;
For thou hast kill'd the sweetest innocent,
That e'er did list up eye.
Oth. O, she was foul !
I scarce did know you, uncle: There lies your niece,
Whose breath, indeed, these hands have newly stopp’d:
I know, this act shows horrible and grim.
Gra. Poor Desdemona! I am glad thy father's dead;
Thy match was mortal to him, and pure grier
Shore his old thread in twain: did he live now,
This sight would make him do a desperate turn,
Yea, curse his better angel from his side,
And fall to reprobation.
Oth. 'Tis pitiful: but yet Iago knows,
That she with Cassio hath the act of shame
A thousand times committed; Cassio confess'd it:
And she did gratify his amorous works
With that recognizance and pledge of love