Dom Casmurro Chapter 72


Neither you, nor I, nor she, nor any other person in this story could have stated more, so certain it is that fate, like all dramatists, does not announce in advance either the plot or the denouement. These come in their own good time, after which the curtain falls, the lights are put out and the spectators go home to bed. In this respect there are perhaps certain reforms that might be introduced, and as a start I would propose that plays should begin at the end. Othello would kill himself and Desdemona in the first act; the three following would be dedicated to the slow, diminishing progress of his jealousy, while the last would contain just the initial scenes of the threat from the Turks, the explanations of Othello and Desdemona and the wise counsel of the sly Iago: ‘Put money in thy purse.’ In this way the spectator, on the one hand, would find in the theatre the customary charades provided by the newspapers, since the final acts would explain the conclusion of the first, providing a kind of moral, while, on the other hand, he would go to bed with a fine impression of tenderness and love:

She lov’d me for the dangers I had pass’d,

And I lov’d her that she did pity them.