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    Act III. Scene IV

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    Chapter 10
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    SCENE IV. Before the castle.

    Enter DESDEMONA, EMILIA, and Clown
    DESDEMONA
    Do you know, sirrah, where Lieutenant Cassio lies?

    Clown
    I dare not say he lies any where.

    DESDEMONA
    Why, man?

    Clown
    He's a soldier, and for one to say a soldier lies,
    is stabbing.

    DESDEMONA
    Go to: where lodges he?

    Clown
    To tell you where he lodges, is to tell you where I lie.

    DESDEMONA
    Can any thing be made of this?

    Clown
    I know not where he lodges, and for me to devise a
    lodging and say he lies here or he lies there, were
    to lie in mine own throat.

    DESDEMONA
    Can you inquire him out, and be edified by report?

    Clown
    I will catechise the world for him; that is, make
    questions, and by them answer.

    DESDEMONA
    Seek him, bid him come hither: tell him I have
    moved my lord on his behalf, and hope all will be well.

    Clown
    To do this is within the compass of man's wit: and
    therefore I will attempt the doing it.

    Exit

    DESDEMONA
    Where should I lose that handkerchief, Emilia?

    EMILIA
    I know not, madam.

    DESDEMONA
    Believe me, I had rather have lost my purse
    Full of crusadoes: and, but my noble Moor
    Is true of mind and made of no such baseness
    As jealous creatures are, it were enough
    To put him to ill thinking.

    EMILIA
    Is he not jealous?

    DESDEMONA
    Who, he? I think the sun where he was born
    Drew all such humours from him.

    EMILIA
    Look, where he comes.

    DESDEMONA
    I will not leave him now till Cassio
    Be call'd to him.

    Enter OTHELLO

    How is't with you, my lord

    OTHELLO
    Well, my good lady.

    Aside

    O, hardness to dissemble!--
    How do you, Desdemona?

    DESDEMONA
    Well, my good lord.

    OTHELLO
    Give me your hand: this hand is moist, my lady.

    DESDEMONA
    It yet hath felt no age nor known no sorrow.

    OTHELLO
    This argues fruitfulness and liberal heart:
    Hot, hot, and moist: this hand of yours requires
    A sequester from liberty, fasting and prayer,
    Much castigation, exercise devout;
    For here's a young and sweating devil here,
    That commonly rebels. 'Tis a good hand,
    A frank one.

    DESDEMONA
    You may, indeed, say so;
    For 'twas that hand that gave away my heart.

    OTHELLO
    A liberal hand: the hearts of old gave hands;
    But our new heraldry is hands, not hearts.

    DESDEMONA
    I cannot speak of this. Come now, your promise.

    OTHELLO
    What promise, chuck?

    DESDEMONA
    I have sent to bid Cassio come speak with you.

    OTHELLO
    I have a salt and sorry rheum offends me;
    Lend me thy handkerchief.

    DESDEMONA
    Here, my lord.

    OTHELLO
    That which I gave you.

    DESDEMONA
    I have it not about me.

    OTHELLO
    Not?

    DESDEMONA
    No, indeed, my lord.

    OTHELLO
    That is a fault.
    That handkerchief
    Did an Egyptian to my mother give;
    She was a charmer, and could almost read
    The thoughts of people: she told her, while
    she kept it,
    'Twould make her amiable and subdue my father
    Entirely to her love, but if she lost it
    Or made gift of it, my father's eye
    Should hold her loathed and his spirits should hunt
    After new fancies: she, dying, gave it me;
    And bid me, when my fate would have me wive,
    To give it her. I did so: and take heed on't;
    Make it a darling like your precious eye;
    To lose't or give't away were such perdition
    As nothing else could match.

    DESDEMONA
    Is't possible?

    OTHELLO
    'Tis true: there's magic in the web of it:
    A sibyl, that had number'd in the world
    The sun to course two hundred compasses,
    In her prophetic fury sew'd the work;
    The worms were hallow'd that did breed the silk;
    And it was dyed in mummy which the skilful
    Conserved of maidens' hearts.

    DESDEMONA
    Indeed! is't true?

    OTHELLO
    Most veritable; therefore look to't well.

    DESDEMONA
    Then would to God that I had never seen't!

    OTHELLO
    Ha! wherefore?

    DESDEMONA
    Why do you speak so startingly and rash?

    OTHELLO
    Is't lost? is't gone? speak, is it out
    o' the way?

    DESDEMONA
    Heaven bless us!

    OTHELLO
    Say you?

    DESDEMONA
    It is not lost; but what an if it were?

    OTHELLO
    How!

    DESDEMONA
    I say, it is not lost.

    OTHELLO
    Fetch't, let me see't.

    DESDEMONA
    Why, so I can, sir, but I will not now.
    This is a trick to put me from my suit:
    Pray you, let Cassio be received again.

    OTHELLO
    Fetch me the handkerchief: my mind misgives.

    DESDEMONA
    Come, come;
    You'll never meet a more sufficient man.

    OTHELLO
    The handkerchief!

    DESDEMONA
    I pray, talk me of Cassio.

    OTHELLO
    The handkerchief!

    DESDEMONA
    A man that all his time
    Hath founded his good fortunes on your love,
    Shared dangers with you,--

    OTHELLO
    The handkerchief!

    DESDEMONA
    In sooth, you are to blame.

    OTHELLO
    Away!

    Exit

    EMILIA
    Is not this man jealous?

    DESDEMONA
    I ne'er saw this before.
    Sure, there's some wonder in this handkerchief:
    I am most unhappy in the loss of it.

    EMILIA
    'Tis not a year or two shows us a man:
    They are all but stomachs, and we all but food;
    To eat us hungerly, and when they are full,
    They belch us. Look you, Cassio and my husband!

    Enter CASSIO and IAGO

    IAGO
    There is no other way; 'tis she must do't:
    And, lo, the happiness! go, and importune her.

    DESDEMONA
    How now, good Cassio! what's the news with you?

    CASSIO
    Madam, my former suit: I do beseech you
    That by your virtuous means I may again
    Exist, and be a member of his love
    Whom I with all the office of my heart
    Entirely honour: I would not be delay'd.
    If my offence be of such mortal kind
    That nor my service past, nor present sorrows,
    Nor purposed merit in futurity,
    Can ransom me into his love again,
    But to know so must be my benefit;
    So shall I clothe me in a forced content,
    And shut myself up in some other course,
    To fortune's alms.

    DESDEMONA
    Alas, thrice-gentle Cassio!
    My advocation is not now in tune;
    My lord is not my lord; nor should I know him,
    Were he in favour as in humour alter'd.
    So help me every spirit sanctified,
    As I have spoken for you all my best
    And stood within the blank of his displeasure
    For my free speech! you must awhile be patient:
    What I can do I will; and more I will
    Than for myself I dare: let that suffice you.

    IAGO
    Is my lord angry?

    EMILIA
    He went hence but now,
    And certainly in strange unquietness.

    IAGO
    Can he be angry? I have seen the cannon,
    When it hath blown his ranks into the air,
    And, like the devil, from his very arm
    Puff'd his own brother:--and can he be angry?
    Something of moment then: I will go meet him:
    There's matter in't indeed, if he be angry.

    DESDEMONA
    I prithee, do so.

    Exit IAGO

    Something, sure, of state,
    Either from Venice, or some unhatch'd practise
    Made demonstrable here in Cyprus to him,
    Hath puddled his clear spirit: and in such cases
    Men's natures wrangle with inferior things,
    Though great ones are their object. 'Tis even so;
    For let our finger ache, and it indues
    Our other healthful members even to that sense
    Of pain: nay, we must think men are not gods,
    Nor of them look for such observances
    As fit the bridal. Beshrew me much, Emilia,
    I was, unhandsome warrior as I am,
    Arraigning his unkindness with my soul;
    But now I find I had suborn'd the witness,
    And he's indicted falsely.

    EMILIA
    Pray heaven it be state-matters, as you think,
    And no conception nor no jealous toy
    Concerning you.

    DESDEMONA
    Alas the day! I never gave him cause.

    EMILIA
    But jealous souls will not be answer'd so;
    They are not ever jealous for the cause,
    But jealous for they are jealous: 'tis a monster
    Begot upon itself, born on itself.

    DESDEMONA
    Heaven keep that monster from Othello's mind!

    EMILIA
    Lady, amen.

    DESDEMONA
    I will go seek him. Cassio, walk hereabout:
    If I do find him fit, I'll move your suit
    And seek to effect it to my uttermost.

    CASSIO
    I humbly thank your ladyship.

    Exeunt DESDEMONA and EMILIA

    Enter BIANCA

    BIANCA
    Save you, friend Cassio!

    CASSIO
    What make you from home?
    How is it with you, my most fair Bianca?
    I' faith, sweet love, I was coming to your house.

    BIANCA
    And I was going to your lodging, Cassio.
    What, keep a week away? seven days and nights?
    Eight score eight hours? and lovers' absent hours,
    More tedious than the dial eight score times?
    O weary reckoning!

    CASSIO
    Pardon me, Bianca:
    I have this while with leaden thoughts been press'd:
    But I shall, in a more continuate time,
    Strike off this score of absence. Sweet Bianca,

    Giving her DESDEMONA's handkerchief

    Take me this work out.

    BIANCA
    O Cassio, whence came this?
    This is some token from a newer friend:
    To the felt absence now I feel a cause:
    Is't come to this? Well, well.

    CASSIO
    Go to, woman!
    Throw your vile guesses in the devil's teeth,
    From whence you have them. You are jealous now
    That this is from some mistress, some remembrance:
    No, in good troth, Bianca.

    BIANCA
    Why, whose is it?

    CASSIO
    I know not, sweet: I found it in my chamber.
    I like the work well: ere it be demanded--
    As like enough it will--I'ld have it copied:
    Take it, and do't; and leave me for this time.

    BIANCA
    Leave you! wherefore?

    CASSIO
    I do attend here on the general;
    And think it no addition, nor my wish,
    To have him see me woman'd.

    BIANCA
    Why, I pray you?

    CASSIO
    Not that I love you not.

    BIANCA
    But that you do not love me.
    I pray you, bring me on the way a little,
    And say if I shall see you soon at night.

    CASSIO
    'Tis but a little way that I can bring you;
    For I attend here: but I'll see you soon.

    BIANCA
    'Tis very good; I must be circumstanced.

    Exeunt
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