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I'll pour this pestilence into his ear,-
Enter RODERIGO. Rod. I do follow here in the chace, not like a hound that hunts, but one that fills up the cry. My money is almost spent ; I have been to-night exceedingly well cudgelled ; and, I think, the issue will be I shall have so much experience for my pains: and so, with no money at all, and a little more wit return to Venice. Lago. How poor are they, that have not pa
tience What wound did ever heal, but by degrees ? Thou know'st, we work by wit, and not by witch
craft ; And wit depends on dilatory time. Does't not go well ? Cassio hath beaten thee, And thou, by that small hurt, hast cashier'd Cassio : Though other things grow fair against the sun, Yet fruits, that blossom first, will first be ripe ! :
s I'll pour this PESTILENCE -] Pestilence, for poison,
WARBURTON. 6 That she REPEALS him - ] That is, recalls him. Johnson,
So it is explained both in the Alphabet of Hard Words, 1604, and by Bullokar, 1616. Malone.
7 That shall enmesh them all.] A metaphor from taking birds in meshes. Pope.
Why not from the taking fish, for which purpose nets are more frequently used ? M. Mason.
a little more wit,] Thus the folio. The first quarto reads and with that wit. STEEVENS. 9 Though other thing's grow fair against the sun, Yet fruits, that blossom first, will first be ripe :] Of many
Content thyself a while. By the mass, 'tis morn
to be done,
different things, all planned with the same art, and promoted with the same diligence, some must succeed sooner than others, by the order of nature. Every thing cannot be done at once; we must proceed by the necessary gradation. We are not to despair of slow events any more than of tardy fruits, while the causes are in regular progress, and the fruits grow fair against the sun. Sir Thomas Hanmer has not, I think, rightly conceived the sentiment; for he reads :
“ Those fruits which blossom first, are not first ripe.” I have therefore drawn it out at length, for there are few to whom that will be easy which was difficult to Sir T. Hanmer,
Johnson. The blossoming, or fair appearance of things, to which lago alludes, is, the removal of Cassio. As their plan had already blossomed, so there was good ground for expecting that it would soon be ripe. Iago does not, I think, mean to compare their scheme to tardy fruits, as Dr. Johnson seems to have supposed.
MALONE. -By The Mass, 'tis morning ;] Here we have one of the numerous arbitrary alterations made by the Master of the Revels in the playhouse copies, from which a great part of the folio was printed. It reads-In troth, 'tis morning. See The Historical Account of the English Stage, vol. iii. MALONE.
To draw —] Thus the old copies; and this reading is consistent with the tenor of the present interrupted speech. Iago is still debating with himself concerning the means to perplex Othello. STEEVENS.
“Myself, the while, to draw." The old copies have awhile. Mr. Theobald made the correction.
The modern editors read-Myself, the while, will draw. But the old copies are undoubtedly right. An imperfect sentence was intended. "Iago is ruminating on his plan. MALONE.
Soliciting his wife :-Ay, that's the way;
ACT III. SCENE I.
Before the Castle.
Enter Cassio, and some Musicians.
[Musick. Enter Clown. Clo. Why, masters, have your instruments been at Naples, that they speak i'the nose thus 5?
3 — bring him JUMP when -] Unexpectedly :-an expression taken from the bound, or start, with which we are shocked, at the sudden and unlooked-for appearance of any offensive object.
HENLEY. Jump when, I believe, signifies no more than just at the time when. Sc, in Hamlet, vol. vii. p. 177, n. 7: “ Thus twice before, and jump at this dead hour.”
STEEVENS. 4 - and bid-good-morrow, general.] It is the usual practice of the waits, or nocturnal minstrels, in several towns in the North of England, after playing a tune or two, to cry,
- Good-morrow, maister such a one, good-morrow, dame," adding the hour, and state of the weather. It should seem to have prevailed at Stratford-upon-Avon. They formerly used hautboys, which are the wind-instruments here meant. Ritson.
5 Why, masters, have your instruments been at Naples, that they SPEAK I'The nose thus ?] So, in The Merchant of Venice:
“ And others, when the bagpipe sings i'the nose—."
1 Mus. How, sir, how !
Clo. Are these, I pray you, called wind instruments ?
1 Mus. Ay, marry, are they, 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 musick, that he desires you, of all loveso, to make no more noise with it.
1 Mus. Well, sir, we will not.
Clo. If you have any musick that may not be heard, to't again: but, as they say, to hear musick, the general does not greatly care.
1 Mus. We have none such, sir.
Clo. Then put up your pipes in your bag, for I'll away?: Go; vanish into air ® ; away.
[Exeunt Musicians. Cas. Dost thou hear, my honest friend?
Clo. No, I hear not your honest friend; I hear you.
Cas. Pr’ythee, 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.
[Erit. Enter Iago. CAS. Do, good my friend.-In happy time, Iago.
6 —of all loves,] The folio reads--for love's sake. The phrase in the text occurs also in The Merry Wives of Windsor. See vol. viii. p. 82. STEEVENS. FOR I'll away :] Sir T. Hanmer reads—and hie away.
Johnson. vanish into AIR;] So, the folio and one of the quartos. The eldest quarto reads
Vanish away. STEEVENS. thy Quillets.] See vol. vii.
Lago. You have not been a-bed then ?
Cas. Why, no; the day had broke
I'll send her to you presently ;
[Exit. Cas. I humbly thank you for't. I never knew A Florentine more kind and honest 1.
Enter EMILIA. Emil. God morrow, good lieutenant: I am sorry For your displeasure"; but all will soon be well. The general, and his wife, are talking of it; 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,
I never knew A Florentine more kind and honest.] In consequence of this line, a doubt has been entertained concerning the country of lago. Cassio was undoubtedly a Florentine, as appears by the first scene of the play, where he is expressly called one. That lago was a Venetian, is proved by a speech in the third scene of this Act, and by what he says in the fifth Act, after having stabbed Roderigo :
Iago. Alas, my dear friend and countryman, Roderigo ! “ Gra. What, of Venice?
Iago. Yes." All that Cassio means to say in the passage before us is, I never experienced more honesty and kindness even in any one of my own countrymen, than in this man. Mr. Steevens had made the same observation in another place.
Malone. It was made in edit. 1778. Steevens.
2 For YOUR DISPLEASURE;] i. e. the displeasure you have incurred from Othello. STEEVENS.