Four Gentlemen of Cyprus

On Cyprus Montano awaits news of the Turkish fleet that is expected to attack, and of the Venetian fleet which is coming to defend the island. He is accompanied by two gentlemen, and asks the first what he has been able to see from the cape. First Gentleman replies, "Nothing at all: it is a highwrought flood" (2.1.2). The three men talk about what a great storm is raging, and about what it will mean for the Turks and for the Venetian forces. As the scene progresses, Montano and the first two gentlemen are joined by a third gentleman who announces the arrival of Cassio, and later by a fourth gentleman who announces the arrival of another ship, which turns out to be the one carrying Desdemona, Iago, Emilia, and Roderigo. Some editors call the Fourth Gentleman a "Messenger," but that doesn't make any difference. The presence of the gentlemen tells us that that the citizens of Cyprus, threatened by the Turks, are anxiously awaiting the arrival of their savior -- Othello. [Scene Summary]

As part of his plan to get Cassio fired, Iago persuades him to drink with some gentlemen of Cyprus. Against his better judgment, Cassio agrees, and goes out to meet the gentlemen. A few moments later he returns with the gentlemen, one of whom is Montano. Cassio announces that they have already given him a drink, and Montano jests, "Good faith, a little one; not past a pint, as I am a soldier" (2.3.66-67). Cassio and the rest then drink some more, and Cassio gets quite drunk, as Iago has planned. Other than Montano, none of the gentlemen says anything; they just drink. We don't know that these are the same gentlemen that we saw before, but there's no reason why they shouldn't be. [Scene Summary]

When Othello asks an unspecified number of gentlemen if they'd like to inspect a fortification, one answers, "We'll wait upon your lordship" (3.2.6). In other words, they're glad to do whatever Othello wants. [Scene Summary]