Othello

by: William Shakespeare

  Act 4 Scene 2

page Act 4 Scene 2 Page 11

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IAGO

Why, now I see there’s mettle in thee, and even from this instant to build on thee a better opinion than ever before. Give me thy hand, Roderigo. Thou hast taken against me a most just exception, but yet I protest I have dealt most directly in thy affair.

IAGO

Well, all right then. Now I see that you have some guts. From this moment on I have a higher opinion of you than before. Give me your hand, Roderigo. Your complaint against me is perfectly understandable, but I still insist I’ve done everything I could to help you.

RODERIGO

It hath not appeared.

RODERIGO

It doesn’t look that way to me.

IAGO

195I grant indeed it hath not appeared, and your suspicion is not without wit and judgment. But, Roderigo, if thou hast that in thee indeed, which I have greater reason to believe now than ever—I mean purpose, courage and valor—this night show it. If thou the next night following enjoy not Desdemona, take me from this world with treachery and devise engines for my life.

IAGO

I admit it doesn’t look that way to me, and the fact that you suspect me shows that you’re smart. But Roderigo, if you’re as courageous and determined as I think you are, then wait just a bit longer. If you’re not having sex with Desdemona tomorrow night, then I suggest you find some way to stab me in the back and kill me.

RODERIGO

Well, what is it? Is it within reason and compass?

RODERIGO

Well, what’s your plan? Is it feasible?

IAGO

Sir, there is especial commission come from Venice to depute Cassio in Othello’s place.

IAGO

Venice has made Cassio governor here on Cyprus.

RODERIGO

Is that true? Why, then Othello and Desdemona return again to Venice.

RODERIGO

Is that true? Then Desdemona and Othello will go back to Venice.

IAGO

Oh, no, he goes into Mauritania and taketh away with him the fair Desdemona, unless his abode be lingered here by some accident—wherein none can be so determinate as the removing of Cassio.

IAGO

Oh, no. He’ll go to Mauritania and take the beautiful Desdemona with him, unless he gets stuck here for some reason. The best way to extend his stay here is to get rid of Cassio.

RODERIGO

200How do you mean, removing of him?

RODERIGO

What do you mean, get rid of him?

IAGO

Why, by making him uncapable of Othello’s place: knocking out his brains.

IAGO

I mean knock his brains out, so he can’t take Othello’s place.

RODERIGO

And that you would have me to do!

RODERIGO

And that’s what you want me to do!