Othello - Act 1, scene 2
Last updated: Fri, Jul 31, 2015
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Act 1, scene 2
Iago warns Othello about Brabantio’s anger, but Othello is confident in his own strength and in his love for Desdemona. Cassio arrives with orders for Othello: Othello is to meet with the duke and senators of Venice about a Turkish invasion of the Venetian colony of Cyprus. Brabantio and his armed band come to seize Othello, who persuades Brabantio to accompany him to the duke, where Othello has been summoned and where Brabantio can present his case against Othello for his “theft” of Desdemona.Enter Othello, Iago, Attendants, with Torches.
0207 Though in the trade of war I have slain men,
0208 Yet do I hold it very stuff o’ th’ conscience
0209 To do no contrived murder. I lack iniquity
0210 ⟨Sometimes⟩ to do me service. Nine or ten times
0211 5 I had thought t’ have yerked him here under the
0213 ’Tis better as it is.
IAGO 0214 Nay, but he prated
0215 And spoke such scurvy and provoking terms
0216 10 Against your Honor,
0217 That with the little godliness I have
0218 I did full hard forbear him. But I pray you, sir,
0219 Are you fast married? Be assured of this,
0220 That the magnifico is much beloved,
0221 15 And hath in his effect a voice potential
0222 As double as the Duke’s. He will divorce you
0223 Or put upon you what restraint or grievance
0224 The law (with all his might to enforce it on)
0225 Will give him cable.
OTHELLO 0226 20 Let him do his spite.
0227 My services which I have done the signiory
0228 Shall out-tongue his complaints. ’Tis yet to know
0229 (Which, when I know that boasting is an honor,
0230 I shall promulgate) I fetch my life and being
0231 25 From men of royal siege, and my demerits
0232 May speak unbonneted to as proud a fortune
0233 As this that I have reached. For know, Iago,
0234 But that I love the gentle Desdemona,
0235 I would not my unhousèd free condition
0236 30 Put into circumscription and confine
0237 For the sea’s worth. But look, what lights come
0239 Those are the raisèd father and his friends.
0240 You were best go in.
OTHELLO 0241 35 Not I. I must be found.
0242 My parts, my title, and my perfect soul
0243 Shall manifest me rightly. Is it they?
IAGO 0244 By Janus, I think no.
Enter Cassio, with ⟨Officers, and⟩ Torches.
0245 The servants of the ⟨Duke⟩ and my lieutenant!
0246 40 The goodness of the night upon you, friends.
0247 What is the news?
CASSIO 0248 The Duke does greet you, general,
0249 And he requires your haste-post-haste appearance,
0250 Even on the instant.
OTHELLO 0251 45 What is the matter, think you?
0252 Something from Cyprus, as I may divine.
0253 It is a business of some heat. The galleys
0254 Have sent a dozen sequent messengers
0255 This very night at one another’s heels,
0256 50 And many of the Consuls, raised and met,
0257 Are at the Duke’s already. You have been hotly
0258 called for.
0259 When, being not at your lodging to be found,
0260 The Senate hath sent about three several quests
0261 55 To search you out.
OTHELLO 0262 ’Tis well I am found by you.
0263 I will but spend a word here in the house
0264 And go with you.⌜He exits.⌝
CASSIO 0265 Ancient, what makes he here?
0266 60 Faith, he tonight hath boarded a land carrack.
0267 If it prove lawful prize, he’s made forever.
0268 I do not understand.
CASSIO 0270 To who?
0271 65 Marry, to—
0272 Come, captain, will you go?
OTHELLO 0273 Have with you.
0274 Here comes another troop to seek for you.
Enter Brabantio, Roderigo, with Officers, and Torches.
0275 It is Brabantio. General, be advised,
0276 70 He comes to bad intent.
OTHELLO 0277 Holla, stand there!
0278 Signior, it is the Moor.
BRABANTIO 0279 Down with him,
⌜They draw their swords.⌝
0281 75 You, Roderigo! Come, sir, I am for you.
0282 Keep up your bright swords, for the dew will rust
0284 Good signior, you shall more command with years
0285 Than with your weapons.
0286 80 O, thou foul thief, where hast thou stowed my
0288 Damned as thou art, thou hast enchanted her!
0289 For I’ll refer me to all things of sense,
0290 [If she in chains of magic were not bound,]
0291 85 Whether a maid so tender, fair, and happy,
0292 So opposite to marriage that she shunned
0293 The wealthy curlèd ⟨darlings⟩ of our nation,
0294 Would ever have, t’ incur a general mock,
0296 90 Of such a thing as thou—to fear, not to delight!
0297 [Judge me the world, if ’tis not gross in sense
0298 That thou hast practiced on her with foul charms,
0299 Abused her delicate youth with drugs or minerals
0300 That weakens motion. I’ll have ’t disputed on.
0301 95 ’Tis probable, and palpable to thinking.
0302 I therefore apprehend and do attach thee]
0303 For an abuser of the world, a practicer
0304 Of arts inhibited and out of warrant.—
0305 Lay hold upon him. If he do resist,
0306 100 Subdue him at his peril.
OTHELLO 0307 Hold your hands,
0308 Both you of my inclining and the rest.
0309 Were it my cue to fight, I should have known it
0310 Without a prompter.—Whither will you that I go
0311 105 To answer this your charge?
BRABANTIO 0312 To prison, till fit time
0313 Of law and course of direct session
0314 Call thee to answer.
OTHELLO 0315 What if ⟨I⟩ do obey?
0316 110 How may the Duke be therewith satisfied,
0317 Whose messengers are here about my side,
0318 Upon some present business of the state,
0319 To bring me to him?
OFFICER 0320 ’Tis true, most worthy signior.
0321 115 The Duke’s in council, and your noble self
0322 I am sure is sent for.
BRABANTIO 0323 How? The Duke in council?
0324 In this time of the night? Bring him away;
0325 Mine’s not an idle cause. The Duke himself,
0326 120 Or any of my brothers of the state,
0327 Cannot but feel this wrong as ’twere their own.
0328 For if such actions may have passage free,
0329 Bondslaves and pagans shall our statesmen be.