Imatges de pàgina
PDF
EPUB

Rod. Beat me

Caf. Doft thou prate, rogue?

Mont. Nay, good lieutenant;

I pray you, Sir, hold your hand.

[Staying him.

Caf. Let me go, Sir, or I'll knock you o'er the mazzard. Mont. Come, come, you're drunk.

Caf. Drunk?

[They fight.

Iago. Away, I fay, go out and cry a mutiny.

-Sir-Montano

[Exit Rodorigo. Nay, good lieutenant-Alas, gentlemenHelp, ho! LieutenantHelp, mafters! here's a goodly watch, indeedWho's that, who rings the bell-diablo, ho!

[Bell rings. The town will rife. Fy, fy, lieutenant! hold: You will be fham'd for ever.

Enter Othello, and Attendants.

Oth. What is the matter here?

Mont. I bleed ftill, I am hurt, but not to th' death.

Oth. Hold, for your lives.

Iago. Hold, ho! lieutenant

Gentlemen

-Sir

-Montano·

Have you forgot all place of fenfe and duty?

The General fpeaks to you-hold, hold, for fhame----
Oth. Why, how now, ho? from whence arifeth this?
Are we turn'd Turks? and to ourfelves do that,
Which heaven hath forbid the Ottomites?
For chriftian fhame, put by this barbarous brawl;
He, that ftirs next to carve for his own rage,
Holds his foul light: he dies upon his motion,
Silence that dreadful bell; it frights the ifle
From her propriety. What is the matter?
Honeft Iago, that looks dead with grieving,
Speak, who began this? on thy love, I charge thee.
Iago. I do not know; friends all, but now,
In quarter and in terms like bride and groom
Divefting them for bed; and then, but now-
(As if fome planet had unwitted men,)
Swords out, and tilting one at other's breafts,

ev'n now

In oppofition bloody. I can't fpeak
Any beginning to this peevish odds,
And, 'would, in action glorious I had lost
Thofe legs that brought me to a part of it!

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

The world hath noted; And
your name
is great
In mouths of wifeft cenfure. What's the matter,
That you unlace your reputation thus,
And fpend your rich opinion, for the name
Of a night-brawler? give me answer to it.
Mon. Worthy Othella, I am hurt to danger;
Your offier, Iago, can inform you,

While I fpare ipeech, which fomething now offends me,
Of all that I do know; nor know I aught
By me that's faid or done amifs this night,
Unlefs felf-charity be fometimes a vice,
And to defend ourselves it be a fin,

When violence affails us.

Oth. Now, by heav'n,

My blood begins my fafer guides to rule;
And paffion, having my best judgment choler'd,
Affays to lead the way.
If I once ftir,

Or do but lift this arm, the best of you

Shall fink in my rebuke. Give me to know
How this foul rout began; who fet it on;
And he, that is approv'd in this offence,

Tho' he had twinn'd with me both at a birth,
Shall lofe me.- -What, in a town of war,
Yet wild, the people's hearts brim-full of fear,
To manage private and domestic quarrel?

In night, and on the Court of Guard and Safety; (19)

(19) In night, and on the Court and Guard of Safety ?] This is fpoken by Othello; but Guard of Safety, though coupled with a Word of Synonymous Conftruction, was never Soldier's Language. I have ven ured to make the Conjunction, and Sign of the Genitive Cofe change Places and fo the Phrafe in Ufe is refored, though against the Authority of the printed Copies.

'Tis monstrous. Say, Iago, who began't?
Mon. If partially affin'd, or leagu'd in office,
Thou doft deliver more or lefs than truth
Thou art no foldier.

Iago. Touch me not fo near:

I'd rather have this tongue cut from my mouth,
Than it fhould do offence to Michael Caffio:
Yet I perfuade myself, to speak the truth
Shall nothing wrong him. Thus 'tis, General:
Montano and myself being in fpeech,

There comes a fellow crying out for help,
And Caffio following with determin'd fword,
To execute upon him. Sir, this gentleman
Steps in to Caffio, and intreats his pause;
Myfelf the crying fellow did purfue,
Left by his clamour (as it fo fell out)

The town might fall in fright. He, fwift of foot,
Out-ran my purpose: I return'd, the rather
For that I heard the clink and fall of fwords,
And Cafto high in oath; which 'till to-night
I ne'er might fay before. When I came back,
(For this was brief) I found them clofe together
At blow and thruft; even as again they were,
When you yourself did part them.
More of this matter cannot I report.

But men are men; the best sometimes forget;
Tho' Caffio did fome little wrong to him,
As men in rage ftrike thofe that wish them beft,
Yet, furely, Caffio, I believe, receiv'd
From him, that fled, fome ftrange indignity,
Which patience could not pafs.

Oth. I know, Iago,

Thy honefty and love doth mince this matter,
Making it light to Caffio. Caffio, I love thee,
But never more be officer of mine..

Enter Defdemona attended.

Look, if my gentle love be not rais'd up:
I'll make thee an example.

Def.

Def. What's the matter?

Oth. All is well, Sweeting, come to-bed.
Sir, for your hurts, myself will be your furgeon.
Lead him off:

Iago, look with care about the town,

And filence those whom this vile brawl distracted.
Come, Defdemona, 'tis the foldier's life,

To have their balmy flumbers wak'd with ftrife.

Manent Iago and Caffio.

Jago. What, are you hurt, lieutenant ?
Caf. Paft all Surgery.

Iago. Marry, heav'n forbid!

[Exeunt.

Caf. Reputation, reputation, reputation! oh I have loft my reputation! I have loft the immortal part of myfelf, and what remains is beftial. My reputation! Iago, my reputation

Iago. As I am an honeft man, I had thought, you had receiv'd fome bodily wound; there is more fense in that than in reputation. Reputation is an idle, and most falfe impofition; oft got without merit, and loft without deferving. You have loft no reputation at all, unless you repute yourself fuch a lofer. What, man,there are ways to recover the General again. You are but now caft in his mood, a punishment more in policy than in malice; even fo as one would beat his offencelefs dog, to affright an imperious lion. Sue to him again, and he's yours.

Caf. I will rather fue to be defpis'd, than to deceive fo good a commander, with fo flight, fo drunken, and fo indifcreet an officer. Drunk, and fpeak? Parrot, and fquabble fwagger? fwear? and difcourfe fuftian with one's own fhadow? oh thou invincible fpirit of wine; if thou haft no name to be known by, let us call thee devil.

Iago. What was he that you follow'd with your fword? what had he done to you? Caf. I know not.

Iago. Is't poffible?

Caf. I remember a mafs of things, but nothing diftin&ly: a quarrel, but nothing wherefore. Oh, that men fhould put an enemy in their mouths, to fteal away. their brains that we should with joy, pleafance, revel, and applaufe, transform ourselves into beasts.

Iago. Why, but you are now well enough: how came you thus recovered?

Caf. It has pleas'd the devil, drunkennefs, to give place to the devil, wrath; one unperfectnefs fhews me another, to make me frankly despise myself.

Iago. Come, you are too fevere a moraler. As the time, the place, and the condition of this country stands, I could heartily wish this had not befallen: but fince it is as it is, mend it for your own good.

Caf. I will ask him for my place again; he fhall tell me, I am a drunkard!- -had I as many mouths as Hydra, fuch an answer would ftop them all. To be now a fenfible man, by and by a fool, and prefently a beaft! Every inordinate cup is unblefs'd, and

[ocr errors]

the ingredient is a devil.

Iago. Come, come, good wine is a good familiar creature, if it be well us'd: exclaim no more against it. And, good lieutenant, I think, you think, I love you.

Caf. I have well approv'd it, Sir. I drunk!

Iago. You, or any man living, may be drunk at some time, man. I tell you what you fhall do: our General's wife is now the General. I may fay fo, in this refpect, for that he hath devoted and giv'n up himself to the contemplation, mark and denotement of her parts and graces, (20). Confefs yourself freely to her: importune

her

(20) For that be bath devoted, and given up himself to the Contemplation, Mark, and Devotement of her Parts and Graces.] I remember, it is faid of Antony, in the Beginning of his Tragedy, that He, who used to fix his Eyes altogether on the dreadful Ranges of War,

norv bends, now turns,

The Office and Devotion of their View
Upon a Strumpet's Front.

This is finely exprefs'd; but I cannot perfuade myself that our Poet

would

« AnteriorContinua »