Othello

by: William Shakespeare

Original Text

Modern Text

Enter OTHELLO and IAGO
OTHELLO and IAGO enter.

IAGO

Will you think so?

IAGO

Do you really think so?

OTHELLO

    Think so, Iago?

OTHELLO

What do you mean, do I think so?

IAGO

      What,
To kiss in private?

IAGO

What, just because they kissed in private?

OTHELLO

  An unauthorized kiss!

OTHELLO

An illicit kiss!

IAGO

Or to be naked with her friend in bed
An hour or more, not meaning any harm?

IAGO

Maybe she was just naked in bed with him for an hour or so, but they didn’t do anything.

OTHELLO

5Naked in bed, Iago, and not mean harm!
It is hypocrisy against the devil.
They that mean virtuously, and yet do so,
The devil their virtue tempts, and they tempt heaven.

OTHELLO

Naked in bed together, but without doing anything? Come on, Iago. That would be like playing a trick on the devil: they’d make him think they’re going to commit adultery, but then back off. Anyone who acted like that would be letting the devil tempt them, and tempting God to condemn them.

IAGO

So they do nothing, ’tis a venial slip.
10But if I give my wife a handkerchief—

IAGO

As long as they didn’t do anything, it would only be a minor sin. But if I gave my wife a handkerchief—

OTHELLO

What then?

OTHELLO

Then what?

IAGO

Why then ’tis hers, my lord, and, being hers,
She may, I think, bestow ’t on any man.

IAGO

Then it’s hers. And if it’s hers, I guess she can give it to any man she wants.

OTHELLO

She is protectress of her honor too.
15May she give that?

OTHELLO

Her reputation is also her own. Can she give that away too?