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Venetian Senator

My spirits and my place have in their power To make this bitter to thee.



My family is of the greatest importance to me. I am determined that our family, which has such a long and distinguished record of service to the state in Venice, should remain at the very top. I have experienced a personal misfortune recently when my daughter Desdemona (who everyone regards as one of the most beautiful and eligible women in the city) deceived me by marrying Othello, a general in the army. Although I have the very highest respect for our army, I hardly feel that a soldier, even one as successful as Othello, brings the right level of class to our highly regarded family. After all, everyone in Venice knows that he is an outsider – and who knows what his family background is?


Othello >>




Most grave Brabantio (Roderigo 1.1.110) , Gentle signior (Duke 1.3.50) , Noble father (Desdemona 1.3.179)



Photo: Cesare De Giglio

Photo: Cesare De Giglio

Photo: Cesare De Giglio


  1. Iago >>

    Zounds sir, y'are robbed, for shame, put on your gown, / Your heart is burst, you have lost half your soul,
  2. Iago >>

    Zounds, sir, you are one of those will not serve / God if the devil bid you.


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His family
Maintaining his position in the Senate
Making an advantageous marriage for his beautiful daughter, Desdemona

Who is he?
Brabantio is one of the most highly respected senators in Venice. He brings a wealth of experience to the role and can be trusted to bring all his experience to bear on any decisions about the government of the state and to the leadership of our army.

Family background
Brabantio's family is of the highest standing in Venice. He and his relatives are very well connected and are at the heart of high society in the state. He has an eligible and beautiful daughter, Desdemona, but he has recently had to suffer the indignity of her going behind his back to marry General Othello. It is well-known that Brabantio would have preferred his only daughter to have married someone much better connected in Venice's high society circles than an outsider like Othello, who is without any of the valuable connections that a locally born husband would have brought to the match.