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Thou cunning'st pattern of excelling nature,
Des. Who's there? Othello?
Ay, my lord
Des. Alas, my lord, what may you mean by that?
Oth. Well, do it, and be brief; I will walk by.
Des. Talk you of killing ?
Ay, I do.
Then, Heaven Have mercy on me! Oth.
Amen, with all my heart ! Des. If you say so, I hope you will not kill me. Oth. Humph!
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.
1 Thus the folio. relumine.
The first quarto-returne; the second quarto
Oth. Think on thy sins.
They are loves I bear to you.
Peace, and be still !
No, by my life and soul ;
Sweet soul, take heed, Take heed of perjury; thou’rt on thy death-bed.
Des. Ay, but not yet to die.
Des. Then, Lord have mercy on me!
I say, amen.
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.
1 « This line is difficult. Thou hast hardened my heart, and makest me kill thee with the rage of a murderer, when I thought to have sacrificed thee to jusuce with the calmness of a priest striking a victim. I am glad that I have ended this dreadful scene; it is not to be endured.'--Johnson.
VOL. VII. 64
Des. He found it, then;
He hath confessed.
How ? unlawfully ?
He'll not say so. Oth.
No, his mouth is stopped ; Honest lago hath ta'en order for’t.
Des. My fear interprets, then,–What, is he dead ?
Oth. Had all his hairs been lives, my great revenge Had stomach for them all.
Des. Alas! he is betrayed, and I undone.
But half an hour.
Being done, There is no pause.” Des.
But while I say one prayer. Oth. It is too late.3
[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 ? 1, that am cruel, am yet merciful; I would not have thee linger in thy pain. So, so.
1 The quarto 1622 reads :
“ That he hath- uds death." 2 The first quarto omits this speech.
3 After this speech of Othello, the elder quarto adds an invocation from Desdemona, consisting only of the sacred name thrice repeated.
4 It is supposed that some theatrical direction has been omitted, and
Emil. [Within.] What, ho! my lord, my lord!
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! 0, 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. O, 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.
But now, my lord !
Emil. Cassio, my lord, has killed a young Venetian,
No, Cassio is not killed.
that, when Othello says, “ So, 80," he renews his attempt to smother her. Steevens thinks it is here intended that he should stab her.
Oth. Not Cassio killed? Then murder's out of
Des. O, falsely, falsely murdered !
Alas! what cry is that? Oth. That! what?
Emil. Out, and alas! that was my lady's voice.-
Des. A guiltless death I die.
O, who hath done This deed ?
Des. Nobody; I myself; farewell.
Oth. Why, how should she be murdered ?
Alas, who knows?
Oth. She's like a liar, gone to burning hell; 'Twas I that killed her. Emil.
0, the more angel she, And you the blacker devil !
Oth. She turned to folly, and she was a whore.
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.
Thylon just ero, in hell,"
Oth. Thy husband.
Ay, with Cassio.
11. e. as unstable, as deceitful. In Genesis, xlix. Jacob applies a similar term to Reuben.