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Duke of Venice.

Brabantio, a senator.

Two other Senators.

Gratiano, brother to Brabantio.

Lodovico, kinsman to Brabantio.

Othello, the Moor:

Cassio, his lieutenant;

Iago, his ancient.

Roderigo, a Venetian gentleman.

Montano, Othello's predecessor in the government

of Cyprus.

Clown, servant to Othello.


Desdemona, daughter to Brabantio, and wife to


Emilia, wife to Iago.

Bianca, a courtezan, mistress to Cassio.

Officers, Gentlemen, Messengers, Musicians, Sailors, Attendants, &c.

Scene, for the first Act, in Venice; during the rest of the play, at a sea-port in Cyprus.




SCENE I. Venice. A street.

Enter Roderigo and Iago.


TUSH, never tell me, I take it much unkindly,
That thou, Jago,-who hast had my purse,
As if the strings were thine,-should'st know of this.
Iago. 'Sblood, but you will not hear me :-

If ever I did dream of such a matter,

Abhor me.

Rod. Thou told'st me, thou didst hold him in thy hate.

Iago. Despise me, if I do not. Three great ones of the city,

In personal suit to make me his lieutenant,
Oft capp'd to him;-and, by the faith of man,
I know my price, I am worth no worse a place :
But he, as loving his own pride and purposes,

* Saluted.

Evades them, with a bombast circumstance*,

Horribly stuff'd with epithets of war;
And, in conclusion, nonsuits

My mediators; for, certest, says he,
I have already chose my officer.
And what was he?

Forsooth, a great arithmetician,
One Michael Cassio, a Florentine,
A fellow almost damn'd in a fair wifet;
That never set a squadron in the field,
Nor the division of a battle knows.

More than a spinster; unless the bookish theorický,
Wherein the toged consuls can propose

As masterly as he: mere prattle, without practice,
Is all his soldiership. But he, sir, had the election:
And I,-of whom his eyes had seen the proof,
At Rhodes, at Cyprus; and on other grounds
Christian and heathen,-must be be-lee'd and calm'd
By debitor and creditor, this counter-caster:¶
He, in good time, must his lieutenant be,

And I, (God bless the mark!) his Moorship's ancient.

Rod. By heaven, I rather would have been his hangman.

Iago. But there's no remedy, 'tis the curse of ser


Preferment goes by letter, and affection,

Not by the old gradation, where each second
Stood heir to the first. Now, sir, be judge yourself,
Whether I in any just term am affin'd**

To love the Moor.


+ Certainly.

For wife some read life, supposing it to allude to the denunciation in the. Gospel, woe unto you when all men shall speak well of you.

§ Theory.

Rulers of the state.

It was anciently the practice to reckon up sums

with counters.



I would not follow him then.

Iago. O, sir, content you;
I follow him to serve my turn upon him:
We cannot all be masters, nor all masters
Cannot be truly follow'd. You shall mark
Many a duteous and knee-crooking knave,
That, doting on his own obsequious bondage,
Wears out his time, much like his master's ass,
For nought but provender; and, when he's old, ca-

Whip me such honest knaves: Others there are,
Who, trimm'd in forms and visages of duty,
Keep yet their hearts attending on themselves;
And, throwing but shows of service on their lords,
Do well thrive by them, and, when they have lin'd
their coats,

Do themselves homage: these fellows have some soul;

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And such a one do I profess myself.

For, sir,

It is as sure as you are Roderigo,

Were I the Moor, I would not be Iago:

In following him, I follow but myself;
Heaven is my judge, not I for love and duty,
But seeming so, for my peculiar end:
For when my outward action doth demonstrate
The native act and figure of my heart
In compliment extern*, 'tis not long after
But I will wear my heart upon my sleeve
For daws to peck at: I am not what I am.
Rod. What a full fortune does the thick-lips owet,
If he can carry't thus !

Call up her father,

Iago. Rouse him: make after him, poison his delight, Proclaim him in the streets; incense her kinsmen, And, though he in a fertile climate dwell, Plague him with flies: though that his joy be joy,

Outward show of civility.

† Own, possess.

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