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SCENE III. The garden of the castle.

 

Enter DESDEMONA, CASSIO, and EMILIA

DESDEMONA

Be thou assured, good Cassio, I will do
All my abilities in thy behalf.

EMILIA

Good madam, do: I warrant it grieves my husband,
As if the case were his.

DESDEMONA

O, that's an honest fellow. Do not doubt, Cassio,
But I will have my lord and you again
As friendly as you were.

CASSIO

Bounteous madam,
Whatever shall become of Michael Cassio,
He's never any thing but your true servant.

DESDEMONA

I know't; I thank you. You do love my lord:
You have known him long; and be you well assured
He shall in strangeness stand no further off
Than in a polite distance.

CASSIO

Ay, but, lady,
That policy may either last so long,
Or feed upon such nice and waterish diet,
Or breed itself so out of circumstance,
That, I being absent and my place supplied,
My general will forget my love and service.

DESDEMONA

Do not doubt that; before Emilia here
I give thee warrant of thy place: assure thee,
If I do vow a friendship, I'll perform it
To the last article: my lord shall never rest;
I'll watch him tame and talk him out of patience;
His bed shall seem a school, his board a shrift;
I'll intermingle every thing he does
With Cassio's suit: therefore be merry, Cassio;
For thy solicitor shall rather die
Than give thy cause away.

EMILIA

Madam, here comes my lord.

CASSIO

Madam, I'll take my leave.

DESDEMONA

Why, stay, and hear me speak.

CASSIO

Madam, not now: I am very ill at ease,
Unfit for mine own purposes.

DESDEMONA

Well, do your discretion.

Exit CASSIO

Enter OTHELLO and IAGO

IAGO

Ha! I like not that.

OTHELLO

What dost thou say?

IAGO

Nothing, my lord: or if--I know not what.

OTHELLO

Was not that Cassio parted from my wife?

IAGO

Cassio, my lord! No, sure, I cannot think it,
That he would steal away so guilty-like,
Seeing you coming.

OTHELLO

I do believe 'twas he.

DESDEMONA

How now, my lord!
I have been talking with a suitor here,
A man that languishes in your displeasure.

OTHELLO

Who is't you mean?

DESDEMONA

Why, your lieutenant, Cassio. Good my lord,
If I have any grace or power to move you,
His present reconciliation take;
For if he be not one that truly loves you,
That errs in ignorance and not in cunning,
I have no judgment in an honest face:
I prithee, call him back.

OTHELLO

Went he hence now?

DESDEMONA

Ay, sooth; so humbled
That he hath left part of his grief with me,
To suffer with him. Good love, call him back.

OTHELLO

Not now, sweet Desdemona; some other time.

DESDEMONA

But shall't be shortly?

OTHELLO

The sooner, sweet, for you.

DESDEMONA

Shall't be to-night at supper?

OTHELLO

No, not to-night.

DESDEMONA

To-morrow dinner, then?

OTHELLO

I shall not dine at home;
I meet the captains at the citadel.

DESDEMONA

Why, then, to-morrow night; or Tuesday morn;
On Tuesday noon, or night; on Wednesday morn:
I prithee, name the time, but let it not
Exceed three days: in faith, he's penitent;
And yet his trespass, in our common reason--
Save that, they say, the wars must make examples
Out of their best--is not almost a fault
To incur a private cheque. When shall he come?
Tell me, Othello: I wonder in my soul,
What you would ask me, that I should deny,
Or stand so mammering on. What! Michael Cassio,
That came a-wooing with you, and so many a time,
When I have spoke of you dispraisingly,
Hath ta'en your part; to have so much to do
To bring him in! Trust me, I could do much,--

OTHELLO

Prithee, no more: let him come when he will;
I will deny thee nothing.

DESDEMONA

Why, this is not a boon;
'Tis as I should entreat you wear your gloves,
Or feed on nourishing dishes, or keep you warm,
Or sue to you to do a peculiar profit
To your own person: nay, when I have a suit
Wherein I mean to touch your love indeed,
It shall be full of poise and difficult weight
And fearful to be granted.

OTHELLO

I will deny thee nothing:
Whereon, I do beseech thee, grant me this,
To leave me but a little to myself.

DESDEMONA

Shall I deny you? no: farewell, my lord.

OTHELLO

Farewell, my Desdemona: I'll come to thee straight.

DESDEMONA

Emilia, come. Be as your fancies teach you;
Whate'er you be, I am obedient.

Exeunt DESDEMONA and EMILIA

OTHELLO

Excellent wretch! Perdition catch my soul,
But I do love thee! and when I love thee not,
Chaos is come again.

IAGO

My noble lord--

OTHELLO

What dost thou say, Iago?

IAGO

Did Michael Cassio, when you woo'd my lady,
Know of your love?

OTHELLO

He did, from first to last: why dost thou ask?

IAGO

But for a satisfaction of my thought;
No further harm.

OTHELLO

Why of thy thought, Iago?

IAGO

I did not think he had been acquainted with her.

OTHELLO

O, yes; and went between us very oft.

IAGO

Indeed!

OTHELLO

Indeed! ay, indeed: discern'st thou aught in that?
Is he not honest?

IAGO

Honest, my lord!

OTHELLO

Honest! ay, honest.

IAGO

My lord, for aught I know.

OTHELLO

What dost thou think?

IAGO

Think, my lord!

OTHELLO

Think, my lord!
By heaven, he echoes me,
As if there were some monster in his thought
Too hideous to be shown. Thou dost mean something:
I heard thee say even now, thou likedst not that,
When Cassio left my wife: what didst not like?
And when I told thee he was of my counsel
In my whole course of wooing, thou criedst 'Indeed!'
And didst contract and purse thy brow together,
As if thou then hadst shut up in thy brain
Some horrible conceit: if thou dost love me,
Show me thy thought.

IAGO

My lord, you know I love you.

OTHELLO

I think thou dost;
And, for I know thou'rt full of love and honesty,
And weigh'st thy words before thou givest them breath,
Therefore these stops of thine fright me the more:
For such things in a false disloyal knave
Are tricks of custom, but in a man that's just
They are close delations, working from the heart
That passion cannot rule.

IAGO

For Michael Cassio,
I dare be sworn I think that he is honest.

OTHELLO

I think so too.

IAGO

Men should be what they seem;
Or those that be not, would they might seem none!

OTHELLO

Certain, men should be what they seem.

IAGO

Why, then, I think Cassio's an honest man.

OTHELLO

Nay, yet there's more in this:
I prithee, speak to me as to thy thinkings,
As thou dost ruminate, and give thy worst of thoughts
The worst of words.

IAGO

Good my lord, pardon me:
Though I am bound to every act of duty,
I am not bound to that all slaves are free to.
Utter my thoughts? Why, say they are vile and false;
As where's that palace whereinto foul things
Sometimes intrude not? who has a breast so pure,
But some uncleanly apprehensions
Keep leets and law-days and in session sit
With meditations lawful?

OTHELLO

Thou dost conspire against thy friend, Iago,
If thou but think'st him wrong'd and makest his ear
A stranger to thy thoughts.

IAGO

I do beseech you--
Though I perchance am vicious in my guess,
As, I confess, it is my nature's plague
To spy into abuses, and oft my jealousy
Shapes faults that are not--that your wisdom yet,
From one that so imperfectly conceits,
Would take no notice, nor build yourself a trouble
Out of his scattering and unsure observance.
It were not for your quiet nor your good,
Nor for my manhood, honesty, or wisdom,
To let you know my thoughts.

OTHELLO

What dost thou mean?

IAGO

Good name in man and woman, dear my lord,
Is the immediate jewel of their souls:
Who steals my purse steals trash; 'tis something, nothing;
'Twas mine, 'tis his, and has been slave to thousands:
But he that filches from me my good name
Robs me of that which not enriches him
And makes me poor indeed.

OTHELLO

By heaven, I'll know thy thoughts.

IAGO

You cannot, if my heart were in your hand;
Nor shall not, whilst 'tis in my custody.

OTHELLO

Ha!

IAGO

O, beware, my lord, of jealousy;
It is the green-eyed monster which doth mock
The meat it feeds on; that cuckold lives in bliss
Who, certain of his fate, loves not his wronger;
But, O, what damned minutes tells he o'er
Who dotes, yet doubts, suspects, yet strongly loves!

OTHELLO

O misery!

IAGO

Poor and content is rich and rich enough,
But riches fineless is as poor as winter
To him that ever fears he shall be poor.
Good heaven, the souls of all my tribe defend
From jealousy!

OTHELLO

Why, why is this?
Think'st thou I'ld make a lie of jealousy,
To follow still the changes of the moon
With fresh suspicions? No; to be once in doubt
Is once to be resolved: exchange me for a goat,
When I shall turn the business of my soul
To such exsufflicate and blown surmises,
Matching thy inference. 'Tis not to make me jealous
To say my wife is fair, feeds well, loves company,
Is free of speech, sings, plays and dances well;
Where virtue is, these are more virtuous:
Nor from mine own weak merits will I draw
The smallest fear or doubt of her revolt;
For she had eyes, and chose me. No, Iago;
I'll see before I doubt; when I doubt, prove;
And on the proof, there is no more but this,--
Away at once with love or jealousy!

IAGO

I am glad of it; for now I shall have reason
To show the love and duty that I bear you
With franker spirit: therefore, as I am bound,
Receive it from me. I speak not yet of proof.
Look to your wife; observe her well with Cassio;
Wear your eye thus, not jealous nor secure:
I would not have your free and noble nature,
Out of self-bounty, be abused; look to't:
I know our country disposition well;
In Venice they do let heaven see the pranks
They dare not show their husbands; their best conscience
Is not to leave't undone, but keep't unknown.

OTHELLO

Dost thou say so?

IAGO

She did deceive her father, marrying you;
And when she seem'd to shake and fear your looks,
She loved them most.

OTHELLO

And so she did.

IAGO

Why, go to then;
She that, so young, could give out such a seeming,
To seal her father's eyes up close as oak-
He thought 'twas witchcraft--but I am much to blame;
I humbly do beseech you of your pardon
For too much loving you.

OTHELLO

I am bound to thee for ever.

IAGO

I see this hath a little dash'd your spirits.

OTHELLO

Not a jot, not a jot.

IAGO

I' faith, I fear it has.
I hope you will consider what is spoke
Comes from my love. But I do see you're moved:
I am to pray you not to strain my speech
To grosser issues nor to larger reach
Than to suspicion.

OTHELLO

I will not.

IAGO

Should you do so, my lord,
My speech should fall into such vile success
As my thoughts aim not at. Cassio's my worthy friend--
My lord, I see you're moved.

OTHELLO

No, not much moved:
I do not think but Desdemona's honest.

IAGO

Long live she so! and long live you to think so!

OTHELLO

And yet, how nature erring from itself,--

IAGO

Ay, there's the point: as--to be bold with you--
Not to affect many proposed matches
Of her own clime, complexion, and degree,
Whereto we see in all things nature tends--
Foh! one may smell in such a will most rank,
Foul disproportion thoughts unnatural.
But pardon me; I do not in position
Distinctly speak of her; though I may fear
Her will, recoiling to her better judgment,
May fall to match you with her country forms
And happily repent.

OTHELLO

Farewell, farewell:
If more thou dost perceive, let me know more;
Set on thy wife to observe: leave me, Iago:

IAGO

[Going] My lord, I take my leave.

OTHELLO

Why did I marry? This honest creature doubtless
Sees and knows more, much more, than he unfolds.

IAGO

[Returning] My lord, I would I might entreat
your honour
To scan this thing no further; leave it to time:
Though it be fit that Cassio have his place,
For sure, he fills it up with great ability,
Yet, if you please to hold him off awhile,
You shall by that perceive him and his means:
Note, if your lady strain his entertainment
With any strong or vehement importunity;
Much will be seen in that. In the mean time,
Let me be thought too busy in my fears--
As worthy cause I have to fear I am--
And hold her free, I do beseech your honour.

OTHELLO

Fear not my government.

IAGO

I once more take my leave.

Exit

OTHELLO

This fellow's of exceeding honesty,
And knows all qualities, with a learned spirit,
Of human dealings. If I do prove her haggard,
Though that her jesses were my dear heartstrings,
I'ld whistle her off and let her down the wind,
To pray at fortune. Haply, for I am black
And have not those soft parts of conversation
That chamberers have, or for I am declined
Into the vale of years,--yet that's not much--
She's gone. I am abused; and my relief
Must be to loathe her. O curse of marriage,
That we can call these delicate creatures ours,
And not their appetites! I had rather be a toad,
And live upon the vapour of a dungeon,
Than keep a corner in the thing I love
For others' uses. Yet, 'tis the plague of great ones;
Prerogatived are they less than the base;
'Tis destiny unshunnable, like death:
Even then this forked plague is fated to us
When we do quicken. Desdemona comes:

Re-enter DESDEMONA and EMILIA

If she be false, O, then heaven mocks itself!
I'll not believe't.

DESDEMONA

How now, my dear Othello!
Your dinner, and the generous islanders
By you invited, do attend your presence.

OTHELLO

I am to blame.

DESDEMONA

Why do you speak so faintly?
Are you not well?

OTHELLO

I have a pain upon my forehead here.

DESDEMONA

'Faith, that's with watching; 'twill away again:
Let me but bind it hard, within this hour
It will be well.

OTHELLO

Your napkin is too little:

He puts the handkerchief from him; and it drops

Let it alone. Come, I'll go in with you.

DESDEMONA

I am very sorry that you are not well.

Exeunt OTHELLO and DESDEMONA

EMILIA

I am glad I have found this napkin:
This was her first remembrance from the Moor:
My wayward husband hath a hundred times
Woo'd me to steal it; but she so loves the token,
For he conjured her she should ever keep it,
That she reserves it evermore about her
To kiss and talk to. I'll have the work ta'en out,
And give't Iago: what he will do with it
Heaven knows, not I;
I nothing but to please his fantasy.

Re-enter Iago

IAGO

How now! what do you here alone?

EMILIA

Do not you chide; I have a thing for you.

IAGO

A thing for me? it is a common thing--

EMILIA

Ha!

IAGO

To have a foolish wife.

EMILIA

O, is that all? What will you give me now
For the same handkerchief?

IAGO

What handkerchief?

EMILIA

What handkerchief?
Why, that the Moor first gave to Desdemona;
That which so often you did bid me steal.

IAGO

Hast stol'n it from her?

EMILIA

No, 'faith; she let it drop by negligence.
And, to the advantage, I, being here, took't up.
Look, here it is.

IAGO

A good wench; give it me.

EMILIA

What will you do with 't, that you have been
so earnest
To have me filch it?

IAGO

[Snatching it] Why, what's that to you?

EMILIA

If it be not for some purpose of import,
Give't me again: poor lady, she'll run mad
When she shall lack it.

IAGO

Be not acknown on 't; I have use for it.
Go, leave me.

Exit EMILIA

I will in Cassio's lodging lose this napkin,
And let him find it. Trifles light as air
Are to the jealous confirmations strong
As proofs of holy writ: this may do something.
The Moor already changes with my poison:
Dangerous conceits are, in their natures, poisons.
Which at the first are scarce found to distaste,
But with a little act upon the blood.
Burn like the mines of Sulphur. I did say so:
Look, where he comes!

Re-enter OTHELLO

Not poppy, nor mandragora,
Nor all the drowsy syrups of the world,
Shall ever medicine thee to that sweet sleep
Which thou owedst yesterday.

OTHELLO

Ha! ha! false to me?

IAGO

Why, how now, general! no more of that.

OTHELLO

Avaunt! be gone! thou hast set me on the rack:
I swear 'tis better to be much abused
Than but to know't a little.

IAGO

How now, my lord!

OTHELLO

What sense had I of her stol'n hours of lust?
I saw't not, thought it not, it harm'd not me:
I slept the next night well, was free and merry;
I found not Cassio's kisses on her lips:
He that is robb'd, not wanting what is stol'n,
Let him not know't, and he's not robb'd at all.

IAGO

I am sorry to hear this.

OTHELLO

I had been happy, if the general camp,
Pioners and all, had tasted her sweet body,
So I had nothing known. O, now, for ever
Farewell the tranquil mind! farewell content!
Farewell the plumed troop, and the big wars,
That make ambition virtue! O, farewell!
Farewell the neighing steed, and the shrill trump,
The spirit-stirring drum, the ear-piercing fife,
The royal banner, and all quality,
Pride, pomp and circumstance of glorious war!
And, O you mortal engines, whose rude throats
The immortal Jove's dead clamours counterfeit,
Farewell! Othello's occupation's gone!

IAGO

Is't possible, my lord?

OTHELLO

Villain, be sure thou prove my love a whore,
Be sure of it; give me the ocular proof:
Or by the worth of man's eternal soul,
Thou hadst been better have been born a dog
Than answer my waked wrath!

IAGO

Is't come to this?

OTHELLO

Make me to see't; or, at the least, so prove it,
That the probation bear no hinge nor loop
To hang a doubt on; or woe upon thy life!

IAGO

My noble lord,--

OTHELLO

If thou dost slander her and torture me,
Never pray more; abandon all remorse;
On horror's head horrors accumulate;
Do deeds to make heaven weep, all earth amazed;
For nothing canst thou to damnation add
Greater than that.

IAGO

O grace! O heaven forgive me!
Are you a man? have you a soul or sense?
God be wi' you; take mine office. O wretched fool.
That livest to make thine honesty a vice!
O monstrous world! Take note, take note, O world,
To be direct and honest is not safe.
I thank you for this profit; and from hence
I'll love no friend, sith love breeds such offence.

OTHELLO

Nay, stay: thou shouldst be honest.

IAGO

I should be wise, for honesty's a fool
And loses that it works for.

OTHELLO

By the world,
I think my wife be honest and think she is not;
I think that thou art just and think thou art not.
I'll have some proof. Her name, that was as fresh
As Dian's visage, is now begrimed and black
As mine own face. If there be cords, or knives,
Poison, or fire, or suffocating streams,
I'll not endure it. Would I were satisfied!

IAGO

I see, sir, you are eaten up with passion:
I do repent me that I put it to you.
You would be satisfied?

OTHELLO

Would! nay, I will.

IAGO

And may: but, how? how satisfied, my lord?
Would you, the supervisor, grossly gape on--
Behold her topp'd?

OTHELLO

Death and damnation! O!

IAGO

It were a tedious difficulty, I think,
To bring them to that prospect: damn them then,
If ever mortal eyes do see them bolster
More than their own! What then? how then?
What shall I say? Where's satisfaction?
It is impossible you should see this,
Were they as prime as goats, as hot as monkeys,
As salt as wolves in pride, and fools as gross
As ignorance made drunk. But yet, I say,
If imputation and strong circumstances,
Which lead directly to the door of truth,
Will give you satisfaction, you may have't.

OTHELLO

Give me a living reason she's disloyal.

IAGO

I do not like the office:
But, sith I am enter'd in this cause so far,
Prick'd to't by foolish honesty and love,
I will go on. I lay with Cassio lately;
And, being troubled with a raging tooth,
I could not sleep.
There are a kind of men so loose of soul,
That in their sleeps will mutter their affairs:
One of this kind is Cassio:
In sleep I heard him say 'Sweet Desdemona,
Let us be wary, let us hide our loves;'
And then, sir, would he gripe and wring my hand,
Cry 'O sweet creature!' and then kiss me hard,
As if he pluck'd up kisses by the roots
That grew upon my lips: then laid his leg
Over my thigh, and sigh'd, and kiss'd; and then
Cried 'Cursed fate that gave thee to the Moor!'

OTHELLO

O monstrous! monstrous!

IAGO

Nay, this was but his dream.

OTHELLO

But this denoted a foregone conclusion:
'Tis a shrewd doubt, though it be but a dream.

IAGO

And this may help to thicken other proofs
That do demonstrate thinly.

OTHELLO

I'll tear her all to pieces.

IAGO

Nay, but be wise: yet we see nothing done;
She may be honest yet. Tell me but this,
Have you not sometimes seen a handkerchief
Spotted with strawberries in your wife's hand?

OTHELLO

I gave her such a one; 'twas my first gift.

IAGO

I know not that; but such a handkerchief--
I am sure it was your wife's--did I to-day
See Cassio wipe his beard with.

OTHELLO

If it be that--

IAGO

If it be that, or any that was hers,
It speaks against her with the other proofs.

OTHELLO

O, that the slave had forty thousand lives!
One is too poor, too weak for my revenge.
Now do I see 'tis true. Look here, Iago;
All my fond love thus do I blow to heaven.
'Tis gone.
Arise, black vengeance, from thy hollow cell!
Yield up, O love, thy crown and hearted throne
To tyrannous hate! Swell, bosom, with thy fraught,
For 'tis of aspics' tongues!

IAGO

Yet be content.

OTHELLO

O, blood, blood, blood!

IAGO

Patience, I say; your mind perhaps may change.

OTHELLO

Never, Iago: Like to the Pontic sea,
Whose icy current and compulsive course
Ne'er feels retiring ebb, but keeps due on
To the Propontic and the Hellespont,
Even so my bloody thoughts, with violent pace,
Shall ne'er look back, ne'er ebb to humble love,
Till that a capable and wide revenge
Swallow them up. Now, by yond marble heaven,

Kneels

In the due reverence of a sacred vow
I here engage my words.

IAGO

Do not rise yet.

Kneels

Witness, you ever-burning lights above,
You elements that clip us round about,
Witness that here Iago doth give up
The execution of his wit, hands, heart,
To wrong'd Othello's service! Let him command,
And to obey shall be in me remorse,
What bloody business ever.

They rise

OTHELLO

I greet thy love,
Not with vain thanks, but with acceptance bounteous,
And will upon the instant put thee to't:
Within these three days let me hear thee say
That Cassio's not alive.

IAGO

My friend is dead; 'tis done at your request:
But let her live.

OTHELLO

Damn her, lewd minx! O, damn her!
Come, go with me apart; I will withdraw,
To furnish me with some swift means of death
For the fair devil. Now art thou my lieutenant.

IAGO

I am your own for ever.

Exeunt

苔丝狄蒙娜、凯西奥及爱米利娅上。

苔丝狄蒙娜好凯西奥,你放心吧,我一定尽力替你说情就是了。

爱米利娅好夫人,请您千万出力。不瞒您说,我的丈夫为了这件事情,也懊恼得不得了,就像是他自己身上的事情一般。

苔丝狄蒙娜啊!你的丈夫是一个好人。放心吧,凯西奥,我一定会设法使我的丈夫对你恢复原来的友谊。

凯西奥大恩大德的夫人,无论迈克尔·凯西奥将来会有什么成就,他永远是您的忠实的仆人。

苔丝狄蒙娜我知道;我感谢你的好意。你爱我的丈夫,你又是他的多年的知交;放心吧,他除了表面上因为避免嫌疑而对你略示疏远以外,决不会真把你见外的。

凯西奥您说得很对,夫人;可是为了这“避嫌”,时间可能就要拖得很长,或是为了一些什么细碎小事,再三考虑之后还是不便叫我回来,结果我失去了在帐下供奔走的机会,日久之后,有人代替了我的地位,恐怕主帅就要把我的忠诚和微劳一起忘记了。

苔丝狄蒙娜那你不用担心;当着爱米利娅的面,我保证你一定可以回复原职。请你相信我,要是我发誓帮助一个朋友,我一定会帮助他到底。我的丈夫将要不得安息,无论睡觉吃饭的时候,我都要在他耳旁聒噪;无论他干什么事,我都要插进嘴去替凯西奥说情。所以高兴起来吧,凯西奥,因为你的辩护人是宁死不愿放弃你的权益的。

奥赛罗及伊阿古自远处上。

爱米利娅夫人,将军来了。

凯西奥夫人,我告辞了。

苔丝狄蒙娜啊,等一等,听我说。

凯西奥夫人,改日再谈吧;我现在心里很不自在,见了主帅恐怕反多不便。

苔丝狄蒙娜好,随您的便。(凯西奥下。)

伊阿古嘿!我不喜欢那种样子。

奥赛罗你说什么?

伊阿古没有什么,主帅;要是——我不知道。

奥赛罗那从我妻子身边走开去的,不是凯西奥吗?

伊阿古凯西奥,主帅?不,不会有那样的事,我不能够设想,他一看见您来了,就好像做了什么虚心事似的,偷偷地溜走了。

奥赛罗我相信是他。

苔丝狄蒙娜啊,我的主!刚才有人在这儿向我请托,他因为失去了您的欢心,非常抑郁不快呢。

奥赛罗你说的是什么人?

苔丝狄蒙娜就是您的副将凯西奥呀。我的好夫君,要是我还有几分面子,或是几分可以左右您的力量,请您立刻对他恢复原来的恩宠吧;因为他倘不是一个真心爱您的人,他的过失倘不是无心而是有意的,那么我就是看错了人啦。请您叫他回来吧。

奥赛罗他刚才从这儿走开吗?

苔丝狄蒙娜嗯,是的;他是那样满含着羞愧,使我也不禁对他感到同情的悲哀。爱人,叫他回来吧。

奥赛罗现在不必,亲爱的苔丝狄蒙娜;慢慢再说吧。

苔丝狄蒙娜可是那不会太久吗?

奥赛罗亲爱的,为了你的缘故,我叫他早一点复职就是了。

苔丝狄蒙娜能不能在今天晚餐的时候?

奥赛罗不,今晚可不能。

苔丝狄蒙娜那么明天午餐的时候?

奥赛罗明天我不在家里午餐;我要跟将领们在营中会面。

苔丝狄蒙娜那么明天晚上吧;或者星期二早上,星期二中午,晚上,星期三早上,随您指定一个时间,可是不要超过三天以上。他对于自己的行为失检,的确非常悔恨;固然在这种战争的时期,听说必须惩办那最好的人物,给全军立个榜样,可是照我们平常的眼光看来,他的过失实在是微乎其微,不必受什么个人的处分。什么时候让他来?告诉我,奥赛罗。要是您有什么事情要求我,我想我决不会拒绝您,或是这样吞吞吐吐的。什么!迈克尔·凯西奥,您向我求婚的时候,是他陪着您来的;好多次我表示对您不满意的时候,他总是为您辩护;现在我请您把他重新叙用,却会这样为难!相信我,我可以——

奥赛罗好了,不要说下去了。让他随便什么时候来吧;你要什么我总不愿拒绝的。

苔丝狄蒙娜这并不是一个恩惠,就好像我请求您戴上您的手套,劝您吃些富于营养的菜餚,穿些温暖的衣服,或是叫您做一件对您自己有益的事情一样。不,要是我真的向您提出什么要求,来试探试探您的爱情,那一定是一件非常棘手而难以应允的事。

奥赛罗我什么都不愿拒绝你;可是现在你必须答应暂时离开我一会儿。

苔丝狄蒙娜我会拒绝您的要求吗?不。再会,我的主。

奥赛罗再会,我的苔丝狄蒙娜;我马上就来看你。

苔丝狄蒙娜爱米利娅,来吧。您爱怎么样就怎么样,我总是服从您的。(苔丝狄蒙娜、爱米利娅同下。)

奥赛罗可爱的女人!要是我不爱你,愿我的灵魂永堕地狱!当我不爱你的时候,世界也要复归于混沌了。

伊阿古尊贵的主帅——

奥赛罗你说什么,伊阿古?

伊阿古当您向夫人求婚的时候,迈克尔·凯西奥也知道你们在恋爱吗?

奥赛罗他从头到尾都知道。你为什么问起?

伊阿古不过是为了解释我心头的一个疑惑,并没有其他用意。

奥赛罗你有什么疑惑,伊阿古?

伊阿古我以为他本来跟夫人是不相识的。

奥赛罗啊,不,他常常在我们两人之间传递消息。

伊阿古当真!

奥赛罗当真!嗯,当真。你觉得有什么不对吗?他这人不老实吗?

伊阿古老实,我的主帅?

奥赛罗老实!嗯,老实。

伊阿古主帅,照我所知道的——

奥赛罗你有什么意见?

伊阿古意见,我的主帅!

奥赛罗意见,我的主帅!天哪,他在学我的舌,好像在他的思想之中,藏着什么丑恶得不可见人的怪物似的。你的话里含着意思。刚才凯西奥离开我的妻子的时候,我听见你说,你不喜欢那种样子;你不喜欢什么样子呢?当我告诉你在我求婚的全部过程中他都参预我们的秘密的时候,你又喊着说,“当真!”蹙紧了你的眉头,好像在把一个可怕的思想锁在你的脑筋里一样。要是你爱我,把你所想到的事告诉我吧。

伊阿古主帅,您知道我是爱您的。

奥赛罗我相信你的话;因为我知道你是一个忠诚正直的人,从来不让一句没有忖度过的话轻易出口,所以你这种吞吞吐吐的口气格外使我惊疑。在一个奸诈的小人,这些不过是一套玩惯了的戏法;可是在一个正人君子,那就是从心底里不知不觉自然流露出来的秘密的抗议。

伊阿古讲到迈克尔·凯西奥,我敢发誓我相信他是忠实的。

奥赛罗我也这样想。

伊阿古人们的内心应该跟他们的外表一致,有的人却不是这样;要是他们能够脱下了假面,那就好了!

奥赛罗不错,人们的内心应该跟他们的外表一致。

伊阿古所以我想凯西奥是个忠实的人。

奥赛罗不,我看你还有一些别的意思。请你老老实实把你心中的意思告诉我,尽管用最坏的字眼,说出你所想到的最坏的事情。

伊阿古我的好主帅,请原谅我;凡是我名分上应尽的责任,我当然不敢躲避,可是您不能勉强我做那一切奴隶们也没有那种义务的事。吐露我的思想?也许它们是邪恶而卑劣的;哪一座庄严的宫殿里,不会有时被下贱的东西闯入呢?哪一个人的心胸这样纯洁,没有一些污秽的念头和正大的思想分庭抗礼呢?

奥赛罗伊阿古,要是你以为你的朋友受人欺侮了,可是却不让他知道你的思想,这不成合谋卖友了吗?

伊阿古也许我是以小人之腹度君子之心,因为——我承认我有一种坏毛病,是个秉性多疑的人,常常会无中生有,错怪了人家;所以请您凭着您的见识,还是不要把我的无稽的猜测放在心上,更不要因为我的胡乱的妄言而自寻烦恼。要是我让您知道了我的思想,一则将会破坏您的安宁,对您没有什么好处;二则那会影响我的人格,对我也是一件不智之举。

奥赛罗你的话是什么意思?

伊阿古我的好主帅,无论男人女人,名誉是他们灵魂里面最切身的珍宝。谁偷窃我的钱囊,不过偷窃到一些废物,一些虚无的东西,它只是从我的手里转到他的手里,而它也曾做过千万人的奴隶;可是谁偷去了我的名誉,那么他虽然并不因此而富足,我却因为失去它而成为赤贫了。

奥赛罗凭着上天起誓,我一定要知道你的思想。

伊阿古即使我的心在您的手里,您也不能知道我的思想;当它还在我的保管之下,我更不能让您知道。

奥赛罗嘿!

伊阿古啊,主帅,您要留心嫉妒啊;那是一个绿眼的妖魔,谁做了它的牺牲,就要受它的玩弄。本来并不爱他的妻子的那种丈夫,虽然明知被他的妻子欺骗,算来还是幸福的;可是啊!一方面那样痴心疼爱,一方面又是那样满腹狐疑,这才是活活的受罪!

奥赛罗啊,难堪的痛苦!

伊阿古贫穷而知足,可以赛过富有;有钱的人要是时时刻刻都在担心他会有一天变成穷人,那么即使他有无限的资财,实际上也像冬天一样贫困。天啊,保佑我们不要嫉妒吧!

奥赛罗咦,这是什么意思?你以为我会在嫉妒里销磨我的一生,随着每一次月亮的变化,发生一次新的猜疑吗?不,我有一天感到怀疑,就要把它立刻解决。要是我会让这种捕风捉影的猜测支配我的心灵,像你所暗示的那样,我就是一头愚蠢的山羊。谁说我的妻子貌美多姿,爱好交际,口才敏慧,能歌善舞,弹得一手好琴,决不会使我嫉妒;对于一个贤淑的女子,这些是锦上添花的美妙的外饰。我也绝不因为我自己的缺点而担心她会背叛我;她倘不是独具慧眼,决不会选中我的。不,伊阿古,我在没有亲眼目睹以前,决不妄起猜疑;当我感到怀疑的时候,我就要把它证实;果然有了确实的证据,我就一了百了,让爱情和嫉妒同时毁灭。

伊阿古您这番话使我听了很是高兴,因为我现在可以用更坦白的精神,向您披露我的忠爱之忱了;既然我不能不说,您且听我说吧。我还不能给您确实的证据。注意尊夫人的行动;留心观察她对凯西奥的态度;用冷静的眼光看着他们,不要一味多心,也不要过于大意。我不愿您的慷慨豪迈的天性被人欺罔;留心着吧。我知道我们国里娘儿们的脾气;在威尼斯她们背着丈夫干的风流活剧,是不瞒天地的;她们可以不顾羞耻,干她们所要干的事,只要不让丈夫知道,就可以问心无愧。

奥赛罗你真的这样说吗?

伊阿古她当初跟您结婚,曾经骗过她的父亲;当她好像对您的容貌战栗畏惧的时候,她的心里却在热烈地爱着它。

奥赛罗她正是这样。

伊阿古好,她这样小小的年纪,就有这般能耐,做作得不露一丝破绽,把她父亲的眼睛完全遮掩过去,使他疑心您用妖术把她骗走。——可是我不该说这种话;请您原谅我对您的过分的忠心吧。

奥赛罗我永远感激你的好意。

伊阿古我看这件事情有点儿令您扫兴。

奥赛罗一点不,一点不。

伊阿古真的,我怕您在生气啦。我希望您把我这番话当作善意的警戒。可是我看您真的在动怒啦。我必须请求您不要因为我这么说了,就武断地下了结论;不过是一点嫌疑,还不能就认为是事实哩。

奥赛罗我不会的。

伊阿古您要是这样,主帅,那么我的话就要引起不幸的后果,完全违反我的本意了。凯西奥是我的好朋友——主帅,我看您在动怒啦。

奥赛罗不,并不怎么动怒。我怎么也不能不相信苔丝狄蒙娜是贞洁的。

伊阿古但愿她永远如此!但愿您永远这样想!

奥赛罗可是一个人往往容易迷失本性——

伊阿古嗯,问题就在这儿。说句大胆的话,当初多少跟她同国族、同肤色、同阶级的人向她求婚,照我们看来,要是成功了,那真是天作之合,可是她都置之不理,这明明是违反常情的举动;嘿!从这儿就可以看到一个荒唐的意志、乖僻的习性和不近人情的思想。可是原谅我,我不一定指着她说;虽然我恐怕她因为一时的孟浪跟随了您,也许后来会觉得您在各方面不能符合她自己国中的标准而懊悔她的选择的错误。

奥赛罗再会,再会。要是你还观察到什么事,请让我知道;叫你的妻子留心察看。离开我,伊阿古。

伊阿古主帅,我告辞了。(欲去。)

奥赛罗我为什么要结婚呢?这个诚实的汉子所看到、所知道的事情,一定比他向我宣布出来的多得多。

伊阿古(回转)主帅,我想请您最好把这件事情搁一搁,慢慢再说吧。凯西奥虽然应该让他复职,因为他对于这一个职位是非常胜任的;可是您要是愿意对他暂时延宕一下,就可以借此窥探他的真相,看他钻的是哪一条门路。您只要注意尊夫人在您面前是不是着力替他说情;从那上头就可以看出不少情事。现在请您只把我的意见认作无谓的过虑——我相信我的确太多疑了——仍旧把尊夫人看成一个清白无罪的人。

奥赛罗你放心吧,我不会失去自制的。

伊阿古那么我告辞了。(下。)

奥赛罗这是一个非常诚实的家伙,对于人情世故是再熟悉不过的了。要是我能够证明她是一头没有驯伏的野鹰,虽然我用自己的心弦把她系住,我也要放她随风远去,追寻她自己的命运。也许因为我生得黑丑,缺少绅士们温柔风雅的谈吐;也许因为我年纪老了点儿——虽然还不算顶老——所以她才会背叛我;我已经自取其辱,只好割断对她这一段痴情。啊,结婚的烦恼!我们可以在名义上把这些可爱的人儿称为我们所有,却不能支配她们的爱憎喜恶!我宁愿做一只蛤蟆,呼吸牢室中的浊气,也不愿占住了自己心爱之物的一角,让别人把它享用。可是那是富贵者也不能幸免的灾祸,他们并不比贫贱者享有更多的特权;那是像死一样不可逃避的命运,我们一生下来就已经在冥冥中注定了要戴那顶倒楣的绿头巾。瞧!她来了。倘然她是不贞的,啊!那么上天在开自己的玩笑了。我不信。

苔丝狄蒙娜及爱米利娅重上。

苔丝狄蒙娜啊,我的亲爱的奥赛罗!您所宴请的那些岛上的贵人们都在等着您去就席哩。

奥赛罗是我失礼了。

苔丝狄蒙娜您怎么说话这样没有劲?您不大舒服吗?

奥赛罗我有点儿头痛。

苔丝狄蒙娜那一定是因为睡少的缘故,不要紧的;让我替您绑紧了,一小时内就可以痊愈。

奥赛罗你的手帕太小了。(苔丝狄蒙娜手帕坠地)随它去;来,我跟你一块儿进去。

苔丝狄蒙娜您身子不舒服,我很懊恼。(奥赛罗、苔丝狄蒙娜下。)

爱米利娅我很高兴我拾到了这方手帕;这是她从那摩尔人手里第一次得到的礼物。我那古怪的丈夫向我说过了不知多少好话,要我把它偷出来;可是她非常喜欢这玩意儿,因为他叫她永远保存好,所以她随时带在身边,一个人的时候就拿出来把它亲吻,对它说话。我要去把那花样描下来,再把它送给伊阿古;究竟他拿去有什么用,天才知道,我可不知道。我只不过为了讨他的喜欢。

伊阿古重上。

伊阿古啊!你一个人在这儿干吗?

爱米利娅不要骂;我有一件好东西给你。

伊阿古一件好东西给我?一件不值钱的东西——

爱米利娅嘿!

伊阿古娶了一个愚蠢的老婆。

爱米利娅啊!只落得这句话吗?要是我现在把那方手帕给了你,你给我什么东西?

伊阿古什么手帕?

爱米利娅什么手帕!就是那摩尔人第一次送给苔丝狄蒙娜,你老是叫我偷出来的那方手帕呀。

伊阿古已经偷来了吗?

爱米利娅不,不瞒你说,她自己不小心掉了下来,我正在旁边,乘此机会就把它拾起来了。瞧,这不是吗?

伊阿古好妻子,给我。

爱米利娅你一定要我偷了它来,究竟有什么用?

伊阿古哼,那干你什么事?(夺帕。)

爱米利娅要是没有重要的用途,还是把它还了我吧。可怜的夫人!她失去这方手帕,准要发疯了。

伊阿古不要说出来;我自有用处。去,离开我。(爱米利娅下)我要把这手帕丢在凯西奥的寓所里,让他找到它。像空气一样轻的小事,对于一个嫉妒的人,也会变成天书一样坚强的确证;也许这就可以引起一场是非。这摩尔人已经中了我的毒药的毒,他的心理上已经发生变化了;危险的思想本来就是一种毒药,虽然在开始的时候尝不到什么苦涩的味道,可是渐渐地在血液里活动起来,就会像硫矿一样轰然爆发。我的话果然不差;瞧,他又来了!

奥赛罗重上。

伊阿古罂粟、曼陀罗或是世上一切使人昏迷的药草,都不能使你得到昨天晚上你还安然享受的酣眠。

奥赛罗嘿!嘿!对我不贞?

伊阿古啊,怎么,主帅!别老想着那件事啦。

奥赛罗去!滚开!你害得我好苦。与其知道得不明不白,还是糊里糊涂受人家欺弄的好。

伊阿古怎么,主帅!

奥赛罗她瞒着我跟人家私通,我不是一无知觉吗?我没有看见,没有想到,它对我漠不相干;到了晚上,我还是睡得好好的,逍遥自得,无忧无虑,在她的嘴唇上找不到凯西奥吻过的痕迹。被盗的人要是不知道偷儿盗去了他什么东西,旁人也不去让他知道,他就等于没有被盗一样。

伊阿古我很抱歉听见您说这样的话。

奥赛罗要是全营的将士,从最低微的工兵起,都曾领略过她的肉体的美趣,只要我一无所知,我还是快乐的。啊!从今以后,永别了,宁静的心绪!永别了,平和的幸福!永别了,威武的大军、激发壮志的战争!啊,永别了!永别了,长嘶的骏马、锐厉的号角、惊魂的鼙鼓、刺耳的横笛、庄严的大旗和一切战阵上的威仪!还有你,杀人的巨炮啊,你的残暴的喉管里摹仿着天神乔武的怒吼,永别了!奥赛罗的事业已经完了。

伊阿古难道一至于此吗,主帅?

奥赛罗恶人,你必须证明我的爱人是一个淫妇,你必须给我目击的证据;否则凭着人类永生的灵魂起誓,我的激起了的怒火将要喷射在你的身上,使你悔恨自己当初不曾投胎做一条狗!

伊阿古竟会到了这样的地步吗?

奥赛罗让我亲眼看见这种事实,或者至少给我无可置疑的切实的证据,不这样可不行;否则我要活活要你的命!

伊阿古尊贵的主帅——

奥赛罗你要是故意捏造谣言,毁坏她的名誉,使我受到难堪的痛苦,那么你再不要祈祷吧;放弃一切恻隐之心,让各种骇人听闻的罪恶丛集于你罪恶的一身,尽管做一些使上天悲泣、使人世惊愕的暴行吧,因为你现在已经罪大恶极,没有什么可以使你在地狱里沉沦得更深的了。

伊阿古天啊!您是一个汉子吗?您有灵魂吗?您有知觉吗?上帝和您同在!我也不要做这捞什子的旗官了。啊,倒楣的傻瓜!你一生只想做个老实人,人家却把你的老实当作了罪恶!啊,丑恶的世界!注意,注意,世人啊!说老实话,做老实人,是一件危险的事哩。谢谢您给我这一个有益的教训,既然善意反而遭人嗔怪,从此以后,我再也不对什么朋友掬献我的真情了。

奥赛罗不,且慢;你应该做一个老实人。

伊阿古我应该做一个聪明人;因为老实人就是傻瓜,虽然一片好心,结果还是自己吃了亏。

奥赛罗我想我的妻子是贞洁的,可是又疑心她不大贞洁;我想你是诚实的,可是又疑心你不大诚实。我一定要得到一些证据。她的名誉本来是像狄安娜的容颜一样皎洁的,现在已经染上污垢,像我自己的脸一样黝黑了。要是这儿有绳子、刀子、毒药、火焰或是使人窒息的河水,我一定不能忍受下去。但愿我能够扫空这一块疑团!

伊阿古主帅,我看您完全被感情所支配了。我很后悔不该惹起您的疑心。那么您愿意知道究竟吗?

奥赛罗愿意!嘿,我一定要知道。

伊阿古那倒是可以的;可是怎样办呢?怎样才算知道了呢,主帅?您还是眼睁睁地当场看她被人奸污吗?

奥赛罗啊!该死该死!

伊阿古叫他们当场出丑,我想很不容易;他们干这种事,总是要避人眼目的。那么怎么样呢?又怎么办呢?我应该怎么说呢?怎样才可以拿到真凭实据?即使他们像山羊一样风骚,猴子一样好色,豺狼一样贪淫,即使他们是糊涂透顶的傻瓜,您也看不到他们这一幕把戏。可是我说,有了确凿的线索,就可以探出事实的真相;要是这一类间接的旁证可以替您解除疑惑,那倒是不难让你得到的。

奥赛罗给我一个充分的理由,证明她已经失节。

伊阿古我不欢喜这件差使;可是既然愚蠢的忠心已经把我拉进了这一桩纠纷里去,我也不能再保持沉默了。最近我曾经和凯西奥同过榻;我因为牙痛不能入睡;世上有一种人,他们的灵魂是不能保守秘密的,往往会在睡梦之中吐露他们的私事,凯西奥也就是这一种人;我听见他在梦寐中说,“亲爱的苔丝狄蒙娜,我们须要小心,不要让别人窥破了我们的爱情!”于是,主帅,他就紧紧地捏住我的手,嘴里喊,“啊,可爱的人儿!”然后狠狠地吻着我,好像那些吻是长在我的嘴唇上,他恨不得把它们连根拔起一样;然后他又把他的脚搁在我的大腿上,叹一口气,亲一个吻,喊一声“该死的命运,把你给了那摩尔人!”

奥赛罗啊,可恶!可恶!

伊阿古不,这不过是他的梦。

奥赛罗但是过去发生过什么事就可想而知;虽然只是一个梦,怎么能不叫人起疑呢。

伊阿古本来只是很无谓的事,现在这样一看,也就大有文章了。

奥赛罗我要把她碎尸万段。

伊阿古不,您不能太卤莽了;我们还没有看见实际的行动;也许她还是贞洁的。告诉我这一点:您有没有看见过在尊夫人的手里有一方绣着草莓花样的手帕?

奥赛罗我给过她这样一方手帕;那是我第一次送给她的礼物。

伊阿古那我不知道;可是今天我看见凯西奥用这样一方手帕抹他的胡子,我相信它一定就是尊夫人的。

奥赛罗假如就是那一方手帕——

伊阿古假如就是那一方手帕,或者是其他她所用过的手帕,那么又是一个对她不利的证据了。

奥赛罗啊,我但愿那家伙有四万条生命!单单让他死一次是发泄不了我的愤怒的。现在我明白这件事情全然是真的了。瞧,伊阿古,我把我的全部痴情向天空中吹散;它已经随风消失了。黑暗的复仇,从你的幽窟之中升起来吧!爱情啊,把你的王冠和你的心灵深处的宝座让给残暴的憎恨吧!胀起来吧,我的胸膛,因为你已经满载着毒蛇的螫舌!

伊阿古请不要生气。

奥赛罗啊,血!血!血!

伊阿古忍耐点儿吧;也许您的意见会改变过来的。

奥赛罗决不,伊阿古。正像黑海的寒涛滚滚奔流,奔进马尔马拉海,直冲达达尼尔海峡,永远不会后退一样,我的风驰电掣的流血的思想,在复仇的目的没有充分达到以前,也决不会踟蹰回顾,化为绕指的柔情。(跪)苍天在上,我倘不能报复这奇耻大辱,誓不偷生人世。

伊阿古且慢起来。(跪)永古炳耀的日月星辰,环抱宇宙的风云雨雾,请你们为我作证:从现在起,伊阿古愿意尽心竭力,为被欺的奥赛罗效劳;无论他叫我做什么残酷的事,我一切唯命是从。

奥赛罗我不用空口的感谢接受你的好意,为了表示我的诚心的嘉纳,我要请你立刻履行你的诺言:在这三天以内,让我听见你说凯西奥已经不在人世。

伊阿古我的朋友的死已经决定了,因为这是您的意旨;可是放她活命吧。

奥赛罗该死的淫妇!啊,咒死她!来,跟我去;我要为这美貌的魔鬼想出一个干脆的死法。现在你是我的副将了。

伊阿古我永远是您的忠仆。(同下。)