My noble father,
I do perceive here a divided duty:
To you I am bound for life and education;
My life and education both do learn me
How to respect you; you are the lord of duty;
I am hitherto your daughter: but here’s my husband,
And so much duty as my mother show’d
To you, preferring you before her father,
So much I challenge that I may profess
Due to the Moor my lord.
My noble father I see that I have a divided duty. I am bound to you because I am your daughter and I respect you. But as my mother chose you over her father I must do the same for my husband the Moor.
Desdemona says this when Othello is being accused by her father of bewitching her into falling in love with him. ” My noble father I do perceive here a divided duty: My life and education both do learn me. How to respect you; you are the lord of duty; I am hitherto your daughter: but here’s my husband, and so much duty as my mother show’d to you, preferring you before her father, so much I challenge that I may profess due to the Moor my lord”. At this point Othello has only been accused by others of fowl play and he had no way to prove that he did no such thing until Desdemona arrived and said this to the Duke and her father.
Othello says this as he is dying after he killed Desdemona. Soft you; a word or two before you go. I have done the state some service, and they know’t. No more of that. I pray you, in your letters, When you shall these unlucky deeds relate, speak of me as I am; nothing extenuate, nor set down aught in malice: then must you speak of one that loved not wisely but too well; Of one not easily jealous, but being wrought perplex’d in the extreme. At this point Othello has realized that he has been tricked and does not want the world to see him as a jealous murderer but an over trusting lover who was tricked by another.