Othello

by: William Shakespeare

  Act 2 Scene 1

page Act 2 Scene 1 Page 4

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MONTANO

But good lieutenant, is your general wived?

MONTANO

Good lieutenant, is your general married?

CASSIO

Most fortunately. He hath achieved a maid
65That paragons description and wild fame,
One that excels the quirks of blazoning pens,
And in th' essential vesture of creation
Does tire the ingener.

CASSIO

Yes, and he’s very lucky to have married the woman he did. His wife defies description. She’s God’s masterpiece, and she’d exhaust whoever tried to do her justice while praising her.
Enter SECOND GENTLEMAN
The SECOND GENTLEMAN enters.
How now? Who has put in?
Who’s arrived in the harbor?

SECOND GENTLEMAN

70'Tis one Iago, ancient to the general.

SECOND GENTLEMAN

A man named Iago, the general’s ensign.

CASSIO

He’s had most favorable and happy speed.
Tempests themselves, high seas, and howling winds,
The guttered rocks and congregated sands,
Traitors ensteeped to enclog the guiltless keel,
75As having sense of beauty, do omit
Their mortal natures, letting go safely by
The divine Desdemona.

CASSIO

He made good time. You see how the storm, the jagged rocks, and the sand banks that trap ships all appreciate a beautiful woman. They let the heavenly Desdemona arrive safe and sound.

MONTANO

What is she?

MONTANO

Who’s that?

CASSIO

She that I spake of, our great captain’s captain,
80Left in the conduct of the bold Iago,
Whose footing here anticipates our thoughts
A se'nnight’s speed. Great Jove, Othello guard,
And swell his sail with thine own powerful breath,
That he may bless this bay with his tall ship,
85Make love’s quick pants in Desdemona’s arms,
Give renewed fire to our extincted spirits
And bring all Cyprus comfort!

CASSIO

She’s the one I was talking about, the general’s wife. The brave Iago was put in charge of bringing her here, and he’s arrived a week sooner than we expected. Dear God, please protect Othello and help him arrive here safely, so he and Desdemona can be in each other’s arms, and Othello can cheer us up and bring comfort to Cyprus.
Enter DESDEMONA, EMILIA, IAGO, RODERIGO with attendants
DESDEMONA, IAGO, RODERIGO and EMILIA enter.