« AnteriorContinuar »
Of pain : Nay, we must think, men are not gods ;
Emil. Pray heaven, it be state matters, as you think;
Des. Alas, the day! I never gave him cause.
Emil. But jealous souls will not be answer'd so;
Des. Heaven keep that monster from Othello's mind!
For let our finger ache, and it indues
Of pain:] I believe it should be rather, Subdues our other healthful members to a sense of pain. Johnson.
Dr. Johnson's conjecture may be supported by a passage in one of Desdemona's speeches to the Senate :
My heart's subdued
lord.” Again, in p. 347:
and subdue my father Entirely to her love." Steevens. To indue appears to have signified in Shakspeare's time, to tincture, to embrue, and is so used here. See Hamlet, Act IV, sc. vii, Vol. XV.
The words 'Tis even so, relate to what Desdemona has just conjectured. “ This is certainly the case; some state affair has disturbed him." Malone.
How a member is to be tinctured or embrewed to any particular sensation, I am glad it is not my office to explain. Steevens,
the bridal.] i. e. the nuptial feast ; a Saxon word. Thus, in the ancient romance of Ywain and Gawain:
“ The bridal sat, for soth to tell
“ Till king Arthur come” &c. Again, in Gamelyn, or the Coke's Tale :
“ At every bridale he would sing and hop.” Steevens.
(unhandsome warrior as I am)] Unhandsome warrior, is evidently unfair assailunt. Johnson.
See note on the same expression, Act II, sc. i. Steeyene.
If I do find him fit, I 'll move your suit,
Exeunt Des. and Emil
Enter BIANCA. Bian. Save you, friend Cassio ! Cas.
What make you from home? How is it with you, my most fair Bianca? l' faith, sweet love, I was coming to your house.
Bian. And I was going to your lodging, Cassio.
Pardon me, Bianca;
[Giving her DESDEMONA's Handkerchief. Take me this work out.2 Bian.
O, Cassio, whence came this?
in a more continuate time,] Thus the folio. The quarto, 1622, has a more convenient time. Malone.
A more continuate time is time less interrupted, time which I can call more my own. It gives a more distinct image than convenient. Johnson. The word occurs again in Timon of Athens, sc. i:
breath'd, as it were, “ To an untirable and continuate goodness.” See Timor of Athens, Act I, sc. i, Vol. XV.
Take me this work out.] The meaning is not, “ Pick out the work, and leave the ground plain;" but, “ Copy this work in another handkerchief." Johnson.
So, in a comedy, by Middleton), called, TV omen beware of TV
she intends “ To take out other works in a new sampler." Again, in the preface to P. Holland's Pliny, 1601: “ Nicophanes (a famous painter) gave his mind wholly to antique pictures, partly to exemplifie and take out their patterns, after that in long continuance of time they were decaied." Again, in Sidney's Arcadia, Book II: “
- why doest thou in thy beautiful sampler set such a work for my desire to take out ?” Steevens.
So, in Hearne's Liber Niger Scaccarii, Vol. II, p. 578, 581, and 585: “ to take out the arms,” means, to copy them. Tollet:
This is some token from a newer friend.
Woman, go to !3
guesses in the devil's teeth, From whence you have them. You are jealous now; That this is from some mistress, some remembrance: No, in good troth, Bianca. Bian.
Why, whose is it? Cas. I know not, sweet: I found it in my chamber. I like the work well; ere it be demanded, (As like enough, it will,) I ’d have it copied: Take it, and do 't; and leave me for this time.
Bian. Leave you! wherefore?
Cas. I do attend here on the general;
Why, I pray you?
But that you do not love me.
if I shall see you soon at night.
3 Toman, go to!!] Old copies, unmetrically
Go to, woman! Steevens.
JVhy, I pray you ?] This and the following speech are wanting in the first quarto. Steevens.
I must be circumstanc'd.] i. e. your civility is now grown conditional. Warburton.
Rather, I must give way to circumstances. M. Muson.
Particular circumstances and your own convenience have, I see, more weight with you than Bianca has. I must be postponed to these considerations. Malone.
ACT IV..... SCENE I.
Enter OTHELLO and IAGO.
Think so, Iago?
What, To kiss in private? Oth.
An unauthoriz'd kiss. Iago. Or to be naked with her friend abed, An hour, or more, not meaning any harm?
Oth. Naked abed, lago, and not mean harm? It is hypocrisy against the devil :6 They that mean virtuously, and yet do so, The devil their virtue tempts, and they tempt heaven.
It is hypocrisy against the devil:] This observation seems strangely abrupt and unoccasioned. We must suppose that lago had, before they appeared in this scene, been applying cases of false comfort to Othello; as that though the parties had been even found in bed together, there might be no harm done; it might be only for the trial of their virtue; as was reported of the Romish saint, Robert D'Arbrissel and his nuns: To this we must suppose Othello here replies; and like a good protestant. For so the sentiment does but suit the character of the speaker, Shakspeare little heeds how these sentiments are circumstanced.
Warburton. Hypocrisy against the devil, means hypocrisy to cheat the de. vil. As common hypocrites cheat men, by seeming good, and yet living wickedly, these men would cheat the devil, by giving him flattering hopes, and at last avoiding the crime which he thinks them ready to commit. Johnson,
The devil their virtue tempts, and they tempt heaven.] The true key to the explanation of this passage may be found in St. Matthew, iv, 7. The poet's idea is, that the devil tempts their virtues, by stirring up their passions, and they tempt heaven, by placing themselves in such a situation as makes it scarcely possible to avoid falling by the gratification of them. Henley.
As the devil makes a trial of their virtue by often throwing temptation in their way, so they presumptuously make a trial whether the divine goodness will enable them to resist a temptation which they have voluntarily created for themselves, or abandon them to the government of their passions. Malone.
Shakspeare had probably in view a very popular book of his time, The Beehive of the Roman Church : « There was an old wife, called Julia, which would take the young men and maides,
Iago. So they do nothing, 'tis a venial slip: But if I give my wife a handkerchief, —
Oth. What then?
Iago. Why, then 'tis hers, my lord; and, being hers, She may, I think, bestow 't on any man.
Oth. She is protectress of her honour too;
Iago. Her honour is an essence that 's not seen;
Oth. By heaven, I would most gladly have forgot it:-
Iago. Ay, what of that?
That 's not so good, now.
and lay them together in a bed. And for that they should not one byte another, nor kicke backewardes with their heeles, she did lay a crucifix between them.” Farmer.
More probably from Fabian's Chronicle, Part IV, ch. 141:“ Of hym (Bishop Adhelme] it is wrytten that when he was styred by his gostly enemy to the synne of the fleshe, he to do the more tormente to hym selfe and of his body, wolde holde within his bedde by him a fayre mayden, hy so longe tyme as he myght say over the hole sauter, albeit that suche holynes is no artycle of saynte Bennetis lore, nor yet for dyverse inconvenyence mooste alowed by holye doctours."
Again, and yet more appositely, in Bale's Actes of Englysh Totaryes, 1548: “ This Adhelmus never refused women, but wold have them commonly both at borde and at bedde, to mocke the devyll with,” &c.-" he layed by hym naked the fayrest mayde he coude get” &c. Steevens.
As doth the raven o'er the infected house,
boding to all --] Thus all the old copies. The moderns ungrammaticallyBoding to ill
Johnson The raven was thought to be a constant attendant on a house in which there was infection. So, in Marlowe's Jew of Malta, 1633:
“ Thus like the sad presaging raven, that tolls
“Does shake contagion from her sable wing.” Malone. VOL. XVI.