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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 foxgot?

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: 1 what's the matter,
That you unlace your reputation thus,

And spend your rich opinion, 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


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.


Now, by heaven,

My blood begins my safer guides to ruic;

1 Judgment.

And passion, having my best judgment collied,1
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 approved 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 domestic quarrel,

In night, and on the court of guard and safety! 'Tis monstrous.-Iago, who began it?

Mon. If partially affined,3 or leagued in office, Thou dost deliver more or less than truth, Thou art no soldier.


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 determined 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 clamor, (as it so fell out)

I Darkened.

2 Convicted by proof.

Related by nearness of office.

The town might fall in fright: he, swift of foo*,
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, received

From him that fled some strange indignity,

Which patience could not pass.

I know, Iago,

Thy honesty and love doth mince this matter,
Making it light to Cassio.-Cassio, I love thee;
But never more be officer of mine.-

Enter DESDEMONA, attended.

Look, if my gentle love be not raised up.

I'll make thee an example.


What's the matter, dear?

Oth. All's well now, sweeting: come away to


Sir, for your hurts,

Myself will be your surgeon: lead him off.

[to Montano, who is led off.

Iago, look with care about the town,

And silence those whom this vile brawl distracted.Come, Desdemona; 'tis the soldiers' life,

To have their balmy slumbers waked with strife. [Exeunt all but Iago and Cassio.

Iago. What, are you hurt, lieutenant?

Cas. Ay, past all surgery.

Iago. Marry, Heaven forbid!

Cas. Reputation, reputation, reputation! O, 】 have lost my reputation! I have lost the immortal part, sir, of myself, and what remains is bestial.My reputation, Iago, my reputation!

Iago. As I am an honest man, I thought you had received some bodily wound; there is more offence in that than in reputation. Reputation is an idle and most false imposition; oft got without merit, and lost without deserving: you have lost no reputation at all, unless you repute yourself such a loser. What, man! there are ways to recover the general again: you are but now cast in his mood' a punishment more in policy than in malice; eyer so as one would beat his offenceless dog, to affright an imperious lion: sue to him again, and he's yours.

Cas. I will rather sue to be despised, than to deceive so good a commander with so slight, so drunken, and so indiscreet an officer. Drunk? an speak parrot? 2 and squabble, swagger, swear, and discourse fustian with one's own shadow ?-O thou

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invisible spirit of wine, if thou hast no name to Le known by, let us call thee devil!

Iago. What was he that you followed with your sword? What had he done to you?

Cas. I know not.

Iago. Is it possible?

Cas. I remember a mass of things, but nothing distinctly; a quarrel, but nothing wherefore.—O, that men should put an enemy in their mouths, to steal away their brains! that we should, with joy, revel, pleasure, and applause, transform ourselves into beasts!

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

Cas. It hath pleased the devil, drunkenness, to give place to the devil, wrath: one unperfectness shows me another, to make me frankly despise myself.


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

Cas. I will ask him for my place again; he shall tell me, I am a drunkard! Had I as many mouths as Hydra, such an answer would stop them all. To be now a sensible man, by and by a fool, and presently a beast! O strange! Every inordinate cup is unblessed, and the ingredient is a devil.

Iago. Come, come, good wine is a good familiar creature, if it be well used; exclaim no more against

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