Reference > William Shakespeare > The Oxford Shakespeare > Othello
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William Shakespeare (1564–1616).  The Oxford Shakespeare.  1914.
 
Othello, the Moor of Venice
 
Act III. Scene I.
 
Cyprus.  Before the Castle.
 
Enter CASSIO, and some Musicians.
  Cas.  Masters, play here, I will content your pains;
Something that’s brief; and bid ‘Good morrow, general.’  [Music.
 
Enter Clown.
        5
  Clo.  Why, masters, have your instruments been in Naples, that they speak i’ the nose thus?
  First Mus.  How, sir, how?
  Clo.  Are these, I pray you, wind-instruments?
  First Mus.  Ay, marry, are they, sir.
  Clo.  O! thereby hangs a tail.        10
  First Mus.  Whereby hangs a tale, sir?
  Clo.  Marry, sir, by many a wind-instrument that I know. But, masters, here’s money for you; and the general so likes your music, that he desires you, for love’s sake, to make no more noise with it.
  First Mus.  Well, sir, we will not.
  Clo.  If you have any music that may not be heard, to ’t again; but, as they say, to hear music the general does not greatly care.
  First Mus.  We have none such, sir.        15
  Clo.  Then put up your pipes in your bag, for I’ll away. Go; vanish into air; away!  [Exeunt Musicians.
  Cas.  Dost thou hear, mine honest friend?
  Clo.  No, I hear not your honest friend; I hear you.
  Cas.  Prithee, keep up thy quillets. There’s a poor piece of gold for thee. If the gentlewoman that attends the general’s wife be stirring, tell her there’s one Cassio entreats her a little favour of speech: wilt thou do this?
  Clo.  She is stirring, sir: if she will stir hither, I shall seem to notify unto her.        20
  Cas.  Do, good my friend.  [Exit Clown.
 
Enter IAGO.
        In happy time, Iago.
  Iago.  You have not been a-bed, then?
  Cas.  Why, no; the day had broke        25
Before we parted. I have made bold, Iago,
To send in to your wife; my suit to her
Is, that she will to virtuous Desdemona
Procure me some access.
  Iago.        I’ll send her to you presently;        30
And I’ll devise a mean to draw the Moor
Out of the way, that your converse and business
May be more free.
  Cas.  I humbly thank you for ’t.  [Exit IAGO.
        I never knew        35
A Florentine more kind and honest.
 
Enter EMILIA.
  Emil.  Good morrow, good lieutenant: I am sorry
For your displeasure; but all will soon be well.
The general and his wife are talking of it,        40
And she speaks for you stoutly: the Moor replies
That he you hurt is of great fame in Cyprus
And great affinity, and that in wholesome wisdom
He might not but refuse you; but he protests he loves you,
And needs no other suitor but his likings        45
To take the saf’st occasion by the front
To bring you in again.
  Cas.        Yet, I beseech you,
If you think fit, or that it may be done,
Give me advantage of some brief discourse        50
With Desdemona alone.
  Emil.        Pray you, come in:
I will bestow you where you shall have time
To speak your bosom freely.
  Cas.        I am much bound to you.  [Exeunt.        55
 
 
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