"We danced our youth in a dreamed-of city
Paradise proud and pretty
We lived for love and lust and beauty
Pleasure then our only duty
Floating then 'twixt heaven and earth
And drunk on plenty's blessed mirth
We thought ourselves eternal then
Our glory sealed by God's own pen
But paradise we found is always frail
Against man's fear will always fail. "
Is anything wrong, Mama?
Nothing at all.
I feel faint.
I feel faint.
I feel faint.
What are you doing?
Come on, Beatrice.
What if he sees us?
He's looking at them, not us.
Did you get my letters?
No? I'm not talking to you anyway. You broke my heart.
All this for me?
Oh glorious maid
Of virtue spare
With bosoms like those who could care?
...my lady, a hand.
- Come. - Hardly.
It's Venus, come to bless the Venetians!
You smell like a sewer.
Thank you. That's a fine welcome, little sister. Look at you.
You might make a wife after all.
- Did you see him? - Who?
Is he handsome?
- He's powerful. - He is.
Welcome home, Marco.
I think I've missed you.
With all the court ladies to amuse you?
Roman women, they can't hold a candle to the Venetian.
Nor can French, Florentine nor any from Europe to the Levant.
No doubt you've sampled them all.
All but idle amusement until you blossomed.
What keeps a son from greeting his own parents?
Beauty, I think.
You're drenched. Come on, you'll catch your death.
I thought you were going to miss dinner again.
Ladies have better things to do than poison their minds with books.
Such as minding their manners.
The butcher said he must be paid.
Sera, do you know when you sail?
Wish I could sail the high seas.
Veronica, high seas, indeed.
She'll never find a husband if she carries on like a child.
How do people marry, Mother?
They strike a bargain.
What's to bargain over if you're in love?
Marriage is a contract, not a perpetual tryst.
Have you got someone in mind?
- Love poetry? - Give it back!
"Life's harshness all forgave
Hearts yearning met When God...
...your soul did..."
Must be true love.
I'd have made a dashing courtier.
Or maybe a pirate!
And again, back. Back, extend and lunge.
Nor in hope
The world can show a fatal...
... love for me
But since that I must...
I really love you Please won't you love me
And where might you be going?
That 'nowhere' has a nice tenor.
Veronica is on the canal with Marco Venier. Alone.
Elena, don't call me that. Makes me feel ancient.
Young ladies of marriageable age must be chaperoned.
A good marriage for Veronica could win me a proper commission.
I always liked Marco.
He won't marry her if he's had her.
Marry her? A bride of Marco's will need a king's ransom.
"I see my fated stars Your eyes...
They melt me as the sun does snow"
I bought this in Rome for you.
You didn't buy it for me.
Yes, I did.
I just didn't know it.
Such an easy gift might easily be taken back again.
Then name me any other gift.
The book will do for now.
I think perhaps you're too young...
...to accept what I would...
...truly give you.
I am not so young as you are vain.
You haven't changed, have you?
How would you know?
I fear you mistake me for one of your easy court companions.
I mistook the asking in your eyes.
Do you not like my kiss?
I wish it were not a sin to have liked it so.
God made sin...
...that we might know His mercy.
I find myself within his eyes
I long for more of myself to know
He hears, it seems, my silent cries
And makes my heart my reason's foe
How can this be, to love so quickly?
"Love does not wait," is his reply
What magic weaves his touch to trick me?
How can I now my love deny?
For my bride...
...a little wedding trinket.
Lorenzo Gritti and his fair bride
Your union gives us greatest pride
Good health, great wealth and lasting line
- How could they? - How could who what?
Your parents marry your sister off to that piece of decaying flesh.
That piece of decaying flesh is a cousin of the doge, confidant of the pope.
- The Roman court adores him. - They don't have to sleep with him.
You'd be surprised.
Save your blushes. They don't sit well with the bluntness of your tongue.
Surely they could have traded down a few ducats for an ounce of virility.
- Why? - For your sister's sake.
She's a prude.
Then it would hardly have been more cruel marrying her to God.
God isn't as rich as Lorenzo Gritti.
Do honor to the houses of Gritti and Venier.
I've seen how you look at her, how she looks at you. I know that look.
Do not underestimate love's allure, Marco.
...but guard your head and your heart.
You cannot marry her.
I wish that were our bridal chamber.
You think me terribly wicked for saying that?
You know we can't marry.
I know only what you tell me.
I must marry...
...according to my station and my family's wealth.
Then why are you here?
Because I could not stay away.
My marriage must be a marriage of state.
My people are true citizens 700 years back.
A coat of arms does not an inheritance make.
I speak of love and you talk of money.
Of my duty.
And your heart?
This isn't about my heart, it's about politics.
Marriage isn't romantic. That's why God invented poetry.
To sweeten men's lying lips!
If I were a liar, would I tell you this now?
If you cared for me, you could not tell me this ever.
I want you.
Daughter, you have reached too high.
I told you, marriage is a contract.
To a man of Marco's station, it has nothing to do with love.
But you can still have Marco.
But not in wedlock.
There's an alternative to marriage.
You'll become a courtesan.
I've seen you watching them. I've seen you mesmerized by them.
You'll become a courtesan...
...like your mother used to be.
You were a courtesan?
One of the best.
A long time ago.
I had hoped to buy you a good marriage.
But your father...
...drank away your dowry.
Your brother must buy his posting.
And I am too old.
It is you...
...who must support us now.
Look at these hands.
...for a scullery maid...
...or working the winery.
Perhaps a lady's maid.
- Wouldn't that be funny? - Send me to the convent then!
You are not the type.
How would you know?
What're you doing?
Whichever devil you choose, you'll look him in the eye first...
...which is more than my mother gave me.
First secret of all great courtesans:
You must know pleasure...
...to give pleasure.
Beauty is a manifestation of the divine.
That theory built the Sistine Chapel, and it'll do the same for you.
Height is an advantage to women as well as men.
Carriage creates the first impression.
Come with me, Veronica.
Mother, we can't go in there.
Ladies can't go in there.
The emperor Pericles relied more for policy on his mistress...
...than he ever did on his lieutenants.
Courtesans, my dear, are the most educated women in the world.
A courtesan is a force of nature in a civilized cloak.
Any chambermaid can flop down, take off her shirt...
... and men will come.
Your true power comes from something much deeper than beauty.
Cleopatra knew that.
Aspasia. She could seduce a man at 20 paces...
...without revealing an inch of flesh.
With her mind.
Desire begins in the mind.
I don't understand.
No, you don't.
Think of Marco.
I know you know anger.
...make him believe that he is the only man in the universe.
Who taught you?
In order to choose your lovers wisely, you need to understand men.
No matter their shape or size...
...position or wealth...
...they all dream...
...of the temptress.
...who quickly turns pliable maiden when they've had a hard day.
You can't be squeamish.
If you don't enjoy it...
...they'll smell it, like a dog smells fear.
And they'll hate you for it.
What's there to be squeamish about?
If you touch...
Use your fingers lightly...
Your tongue, like licking sweets.
Your teeth, with restraint.
...to keep him wanting more.
...that keeps us alive.
I'd like to present you to my daughter, Veronica.
It would bring me luck if you'd play a hand for me.
Remember, Veronica, love love.
But do not love the man, or you'll be in his power.
May I call?
May I call?
This is my first bet.
Repent your empty excesses!
There is no comfort here.
May I ask you, is this God's game?
Why do you gamble with your souls?
What is it you want?
This is no company for one so fair.
Venice may as well be deemed one large floating brothel.
What's biting your ass this fair evening, cousin?
You'd begrudge the fairer sex their little crumbs?
No, though they do make more in a night than I a month.
Go make yourself useful. Give us a rhyme.
I'm no performing monkey for the idle masses.
We're all of us performing monkeys, nephew.
Paupers and poets alike.
I'm at your service, Uncle.
If it's rhyme you wish, I'll gladly oblige.
Venice. To celebrate our plenty.
Born in glory
The virgin's exultation
Fair and mighty Venice
Queen of the sea
Sovereign isle is she
Rising from the foamy depths
Signor Venier? Don't be absurd.
I'm not being absurd. I'm just...
...treating you with indifference, as you did me.
You confuse indifference with honesty.
You confuse honesty with venality.
You think me venal?
You are a venal cur.
Something I can do for you?
Here, beauty, wit and wealth combined
Gateway 'twixt distant East and West
Mother of liberty
Child of honor
Home and hearth and heart
To men of valor
Perhaps the fair maiden can do better.
...virgin, queen and...
To be all 5 at once is no mean trick.
If women's lust lost Eden Our redress to be
Hearth, heart and home to every...
Who is she?
That brings us...
...greed and trade's...
Her raiment, as the moon doth glow
Her wisdom shines bright As envious day
...are locked away
Never ever hide that face again.
Children are a deficit.
It's not infallible.
It's more comfortable than a turtle shell.
You didn't tell me everything.
How could I?
They won't all be Rambertis.
Honor us with a poem, Signora Veronica.
I would be too humbled before such eloquent minds.
Make us laugh as you did before.
Perhaps if I'm clever next time I shall make you weep.
I shall weep if I don't see you again.
I shall count the hours in between.
Scrape any lower you can have shoes for earrings.
Why, Marco Venier, I do believe you're jealous.
I can only be jealous of what I cannot have.
- And you cannot have me. - There's no one in Venice I can't have.
And there's not a man in Venice that I can't have.
We are so alike, you and me.
We both know that love is inconvenient, if not impossible.
So why not enjoy what little we're allowed together?
I'm all booked up.
I see you're enjoying yourself.
Yes, thank you, Signor Venier.
Otherwise, you'll make me feel old.
Let me help you.
It's not a sight for such beautiful eyes.
I'm not afraid of flesh.
The man who bid you rhyme...
...admiral of our fleet.
Whatever you do, don't make him mad.
Bishop De La Torre.
His collection of paintings is surpassed only by his collection of women.
Ramberti, you know.
Minister of Defense. I tell you, he's in love with you.
You say that as if you thought it a disease.
You think, perhaps, I want you for myself?
I would not presume.
I was flattered to think you might harbor such suspicions...
...under the circumstances.
I would be happy to attend to you under any circumstances.
"All the best courtesans have one."
Signor Marco Venier wishes your audience.
A peacock does not an inheritance make.
Look at these gowns. Each is a unique work of art.
I've seen better.
Must be interesting...
...being in a room full of men, most of whom you've seen naked.
Puts it all in some kind of perspective.
I was wondering...
I would enjoy it if perhaps we might...
...exchange verse again...
We can't afford one another, Maffio. We're both...
...courtiers singing for our supper.
What was Cousin Maffio on about?
The pleasures of poetry.
Enjoy the hunt?
The hunt possesses, doesn't it, such a cruel beauty?
Much like your own.
Is my beauty cruel?
I think so.
To those that you refuse, yes.
It is only my refusal that arouses your longing.
You underrate yourself.
Put it to the test.
...and then see if you're rid of me.
If I'm right...
...you'll tire of me, and if you're right, I'll tire of you.
Maybe we should just stay as we are.
You know I do regret...
...the hurt that I caused you.
With all my heart.
The heart is higher up.
Her father owns half of Lombardy...
...and her aunt is the pope's niece. An alliance with this family is a godsend.
You will marry Giulia da Lezze...
...for Venice, if for no other reason.
You have the feigned indifference of a man in love.
Go on, son...
...tell the truth and shame the devil.
The Turks are on the move again?
The sultan wants the Mediterranean for his bathing pool.
So what is that heavenly thing?
I'm an ass!
My little poetess.
I'm an ass!
You are the brightest...
...star in the Venetian firmament.
But also the brightest.
...the feigned indifference of a man...
Of a man about to be married.
I'm getting married. Congratulate me.
Felicitations on your grand match.
Do you love her?
Do I have to?
I hope it's a profitable union.
Do you like poetry?
I know the Psalms.
Tell me a secret.
- I have no secrets. - Everyone has secrets.
Tell me a desire.
I hope to give you many strong sons.
No, I mean something...
Something just for you.
To be a good wife to you is my only desire.
'Tis not wanton flesh But love that brings me shame
Mocked by fate Imprisoned by my womb
My jealousy possessed Which slow consumes
An ice-cold, gloomy vicious flame
I love the very weapons which me wound
Lucky is the man that can inspire your poet's heart.
The only form she's mastered is a whore's.
Honestly, I didn't think Uncle was still capable of getting it up.
What did you do to him, to get him to publish this little pile of ditties?
Won't give the time of day to his own flesh and blood.
She worked for it.
I'll bet she worked for it.
What do you cost these days?
If your prick is as limp as your verse, no price could purchase time enough.
Just making a point, Cousin.
Very brave. What point would that be?
Have you the guts to try again Blade to blade and pen to pen?
Veritably unique whore
...is at best a slut
With every horny mutt
You pride yourself on arts and letters
And fucking best your manly betters
I save the goodly wives of Venice From their husbands' lustful menace
Then you confess...
And your beauty's gladly stuck
...I fuck divinely
Those who love and well opine me
...I fuck divinely
...richly wine and dine me
On the page or on the sheet You'll never find a tongue more sweet
On the page or on the sheet
On the page or on the sheet Greet bleat...
On the page or on the sheet A greater hack you'll never meet.
You fight like a sailor.
I learned from a sailor. Now stop stalling.
Recant the curse you give my kind
Admit I have, as you, a heart and mind
A greedy hand, an empty heart Is all that wrests your legs apart
How did you let this paragon of cities turn into a cesspit...
...of vice and depravity?
For as the waters flow through Venice every day...
...and wash away the filth...
Do you not agree?
I think not.
A soul in torment is a soul without God.
All flesh is grass.
We must all meet our Maker.
To this end we must all come.
You can be saved, my brother.
...cure me of my desire...
Tonight's too many hours away.
My affections aren't mine to give you tonight.
I have mouths to feed like you.
I'll support you.
No. There will no money between us.
So you'd continue with this life?
I have no choice. This is the life I was given.
You do have a choice.
If I were yours alone, your property...
...you'd soon tire of me.
If you cared for me, you could not do this.
Do not ask of me what you cannot give.
Your wife is waiting.
What ails you, Marco?
What do you mean?
I want to be a good wife.
...always makes me hungry.
...you're not eating.
But you are though, darling.
There'll be no more of these little delicacies if the sultan turns nasty.
Why are bells ringing at this time of night?
The sultan has attacked.
He took 8 ships near Malta.
If we don't sail for Cyprus by Easter, we won't be sailing back.
- Sooner, I think. - If we can't rally France, we won't.
The Turks have 3 ships to our 1.
- Will the King of France help us? - If we amuse him.
King Henry's a boy in men's breeches.
- A powerful boy. - A boy nonetheless.
He commands a lot of ships and has no love for the Turks.
Your wife believes she has bewitched you.
What's the harm in bewitching a married man?
That man has to have heirs. He's to be a senator soon.
So he shall.
What God and greed have joined together...
...let no love put asunder.
The woman you love is not good...
...not pure, not meek.
I'm a courtesan. It's the only thing you'll let me do...
I can't bear it.
I know I have no right...
...but I won't share you.
But I must share you. I must bear that. I have no choice.
Please don't envy Giulia. She will never have what you have.
Please trust me.
I don't know how.
I'll earn your trust.
You'll go to war and die.
Stay with me for as long as we have.
And be your private whore?
Don't ever say that.
You're Veronica Franco.
You're a poet.
And you're my lady.
Cancel my appointments, please.
It's a treacherous game you play, my little idiot.
You outdid me long ago.
I know that.
And the irony is, it's not because...
...you're prettier than I was, because you're not.
Nor that you're a better lay, because you aren't.
It's because you're smarter. You have a gift.
- Don't throw it away. - For God's sake, haven't I done enough?
He's a client like the others. Love him and lose.
I must go. King Henry's coming.
I'll get my things.
You've been selfish, keeping her hidden away.
You came back in time...
...to seduce the French king. He arrives tomorrow.
He'd let Paris burn for a good lay.
He'll hardly fight for Venice.
Depends on how Venice lays him.
I don't mind fighting, but I prefer a war I can win.
Without France's ships, it's a suicide mission.
We must fight the infidels here...
...before we can beat them abroad! Before we can fight them at home!
Take this paper to the king!
Let me go! I'm a man of God! Give him this paper!
France has zealots too. We prefer heretics. They're not so serious.
Zealots are creating difficulties everywhere.
Our captains tell us...
...the Muslim Turks have been spotted near Cyprus.
Rather presumptuous, don't you think?
Rather presumptuous to think the Church wouldn't come to its defense?
What about these courtesans Venice is so famous for?
The sultan is too experienced to gamble...
I'd like to meet them.
Are they nearby?
Who's that? She's not with the others.
Veronica Franco, Your Excellency. The poetess.
Is she a courtesan?
She is, Your Highness.
Tell her to come forward.
I want her.
- You do me great honor. - I take you from the one you love.
You have to say that. I'm the king.
I have to say that because Venice needs you.
What do you yearn for, IKing Henry?
You've heard the rumors.
The king is a pervert.
What do you really yearn for?
You yearn for my tears?
I don't think so.
Then what do I yearn for?
Why don't we find out?
You'll get your ships.
- Poet to kings. - A national asset.
More than 100 French ships.
We should make you ambassador to the emperor.
He doesn't deserve her.
Would he sooner we didn't get the ships?
He would rather he had the right to refuse even a king your hand.
I could not refuse.
I think you like it.
You like what it has made me.
I don't like what it makes me.
Why did you not stop me?
You're not mine to stop!
Whose fault is that?
You sleep with Giulia for duty's sake.
I slept with the IKing of France once for duty's sake. Who does not forgive?
Perhaps I can't live with it.
I pray God to watch over you.
Save your prayers, Veronica.
The devil's got my heart now. God hasn't a chance.
We were hoping you'd tell us what's happening with the war.
What do you know?
Just that we're fighting the Turks again.
And that's all?
Their sultan sent us an ultimatum.
Either we surrender Cyprus or he takes it by force. Our fleets went to defend it.
Is Cyprus so important, we must send our husbands to battle?
...we lose control over the eastern Mediterranean.
I know we own it...
...but where exactly is Cyprus?
...do you know if he is alive or dead?
Alive and well.
The admiral is alive. And a hero.
And my husband?
Who is your husband?
My husband is Pietro Vicco.
He's strong. He'll come home safely.
You know her husband well.
Not at all well, but his reputation precedes him.
Go on, ask her.
Ask her what you're longing to.
Ask her what draws our husbands back to her again and again...
...like pigs to a trough!
The Latin for banana is ariena.
Banana tree is pala.
A woman's greatest and most hard-won asset...
...is an education.
Just because you can say it in Latin doesn't make it less obscene.
Just because you took a vow doesn't mean you know love.
Either that whore leaves or I leave. No Christian woman could tolerate this!
You're unfit to be a mother.
At least I am a mother.
Thank you for your assistance, Signora Franco.
You made many enemies today.
They were already enemies.
Now they will become more so.
Did you come to warn me?
...make her a courtesan.
I will not pimp your daughter.
Look at the life you live.
The freedom that you have.
You'll deny my daughter the same chance?
Turn right up ahead.
This is where we go to die.
You will not end here.
Livia, Venice's reigning Venus.
A jealous lover did that.
Who wants her now?
My cage seems bigger than yours, but it's still a cage.
You won't get sympathy from me.
I don't want it.
Do you know what my daughter's nurse told her today?
That in a girl's voice lies temptation.
A known fact. Eloquence in a woman means promiscuity.
Promiscuity of the mind...
...leads to promiscuity of the body.
She doesn't believe her yet, but she will.
She'll grow up like her mother.
She'll marry, bear children...
...and honor her family. Spend her youth in needlepoint...
And when she dies...
...she'll wonder why she obeyed all the rules of God and country...
...because no biblical hell could ever be worse...
...than this state of perpetual inconsequence.
Silent God ignores my prayer
And renders lost
What once was fair
Once blissful Fortune's favorite city
Now wheeled fate turns
No trace of pity
Citizens of Venice!
Look around you now at the disease and deaths...
... that have taken over our once beautiful city, and tell me...
... this plague is not a punishment...
... from God!
We are surrounded by harlots...
... and courtesans!
We must cast out those who tempt us...
...for we are a city of shame...
... of fornication...
... and carnal practices that defy description.
We will go the way of Sodom and Gomorrah...
... and become dust in the sands of time!
There's news from Venice.
The corruption of flesh, the paint on their faces...
...the vile coloring of their hair, their wanton dress...
Look on them and within yourselves.
Please forgive me.
Signora Veronica Franco...
...I hereby summon you to appear before the tribunal of the Holy Inquisition.
You have no jurisdiction here, Senator. I speak for the Church.
We have 56,000 dead.
The living want answers. They may be wrong answers, but they want them.
Be glad the bastards aren't burning us out.
You can stop it!
If the doge came out in defense of a notorious courtesan...
Now she's notorious? Before she was a national asset.
It would topple the government.
These are grim times, Senator.
You're an elected official.
You cannot refuse your office.
Then you compel me to condone these proceedings.
Am I mistaken, or is Venice still a free republic?
By order of the pope, the Inquisition has come to Venice...
...to seek out heresy and beliefs anathema to the Church.
...you have been denounced...
...on the charge of witchcraft, a mortal sin punishable by death.
Should you confess and repent during these proceedings...
...you will be mercifully welcomed back into the bosom of the Holy Church.
The accused shall make no utterance but to answer our questions or to confess.
...ever a noble republic...
...home of learning...
...has been brought low by war and plague.
Do you know why?
I am not that wise.
...of the worthy men of this city have you taken into your chamber?
I've not counted my lovers.
Answer the question.
More than 100?
I don't know.
Yet for each you paraded your milky breast and hair of spun copper.
For each you learned his unique favored touch...
...and enchanted him to believe he was the only man in the universe.
How many per week?
I told you. I enchanted no one.
Did you feign love with more than 10 weekly? Or would 5 or 6 have sated you?
I never feigned love.
So why'd they pay?
For the dream of love...
...as it cannot exist in this world that you've created.
For the hope there might exist on earth some corner of this paradise...
When 56,000 have fallen?
You say this.
...who fill your home with feast and dance while Venice suffers?
Who creates a sumptuous world of flesh...
...and depravity, of orgiastic rites invoking the devil?
- This is paradise? - The only devilry here is your spite!
He's jealous of what he cannot have!
Do not intrude into the proceedings.
I'm a senator of Venice. The Inquisition is here by our consent.
This is an ecclesiastical court. You are here by my consent.
This is a personal vendetta.
You will abide by our rules or be removed.
Is that understood?
Is that understood?
The senator speaks the truth.
I was bewitched by her.
In my weakness, I fell under her spell to pathetic ruin.
It's only by the grace of God I stand here today.
I didn't seek your love.
Because I could not pay your fee.
I loved another.
In other words...
...you cast your spell over all who cross your path.
You compel sacred love to garner riches. What is this if not witchcraft?
Ever give yourself to a man who couldn't pay?
I gave my heart where riches were no use.
I did what was needed to live.
Did you give yourself to a man who could not pay?
What other profession do you allow me? How shall I survive if I cannot marry?
Why, when you are determined to damn me?
Look at her.
Feel her wrath...
She, who lures the noble fathers of Venice from their wives...
...their ability to lead the republic!
It is she and her kind who turned God's hands against us, Your Grace.
...we must do our duty.
Veronica Franco, you hover at the brink of extermination and hell.
You will return tomorrow to hear God's merciful judgment and, I hope...
...to repent before that judgment takes its course.
Remove the prisoner.
You must save yourself.
Confess whatever foolishness they put before you...
That I'm a witch?
What does it matter what you say?
I would be saying it.
There is no honor with fools like these.
God will forgive you.
If I give them my lie, I give them my soul.
I'll lose everything I ever was.
My love, my words, my heart.
But you would live.
As someone else.
I've let you go too many times.
I can't do it again.
There is no choice.
I'll never see you again.
Veronica Franco, you have been denounced a sorceress.
Either confess and plead mercy, or stand to receive my judgment.
I will confess, Your Grace.
That will please God.
...as a girl I loved a man who would not marry me for want of a dowry.
I confess I had a mother who taught me a different way of life.
One I resisted at first but learned to embrace.
I confess I became a courtesan.
Traded yearning for power, welcomed many rather than be owned by one.
She does not speak to the charge.
I confess I embraced a whore's freedom over a wife's obedience.
This is not repentance.
What am I to do?
I must confess my evil. These are my sins.
Your Grace, her mortal sins are not at issue.
She must repent witchcraft.
Perhaps she heads in that direction.
You have been warned.
The Church cannot deny her right to seek God's mercy. Confession is sacrosanct.
Don't instruct me on the Church's laws!
Then I call upon the doge to demand that the Inquisition abide by them.
If Christian mercy is gone, then at least Venetian justice still exists.
I pray Your Grace has heard enough of this.
It does seem odd that the Holy Mother Church would deny a sinner confession.
I see no harm in hearing her.
She will save or damn herself.
The prisoner has already damned herself.
But if it pleases the esteemed doge of Venice...
...she may continue her heresy.
I confess I find more ecstasy in passion than in prayer.
I confess I pray still...
...to feel the touch of my lover's lips...
...his hands upon me...
...his arms enfolding me.
Save yourself, please.
Such surrender has been mine.
I confess I hunger still to be filled and inflamed.
To melt into the dream of us...
...beyond this troubled place...
...to where we are not even ourselves.
To know that always...
...always this is mine.
...is this necessary?
She hopes to bewitch us all.
If this had not been mine, if I had lived another way...
...a child to a husband's whim...
...my soul hardened from lack of touch and lack of love...
...I confess such endless days and nights...
...would be punishment greater than any you could mete out.
No, Your Grace.
You, all of you...
...who hunger for what I give but cannot bear to see such power in a woman...
...you call God's greatest gift...
...our yearning, our need to love, you call it filth...
...and sin and heresy...
Enough. One last time before you are condemned: Do you repent or not?
I repent there was no other way open to me. I do not repent my life.
Then the Holy Inquisition has heard the evidence against you and is satisfied.
In the name of the pope...
There is more to be heard.
I demand the same rights of confession!
You're not on trial!
We're still on consecrated ground. I confess I am her accomplice.
If she is a witch, damn me. I do not repent. I will not live without her.
This is a cynical trick. He does this to save her.
She's a witch!
Proven and convicted, the devil in our midst...
...and I am her accomplice! Condemn her if you will...
...but arrest me too. Arrest a senator of Venice for witchcraft.
I'll not shrink from judging the mighty.
I welcome it. I wait for the shackles.
He speaks with his heart, not his head.
He's blinded by his own lust.
If she's a witch, so is every woman in Venice!
We are a strange city, Your Holiness.
And perhaps we live in a peculiar state of grace.
I am not alone...
...in loving this woman...
...though I love her far, far more than they.
If we do not speak now...
...does not stand up now and acknowledge who she is, then we are all damned...
...not before this court...
If what he says is true...
...then you must speak the names of your accomplices.
...the men who loved her were under her spell.
They had no volition.
Shall we punish even the victims of her evil?
If the soul of the city is corrupt...
...and you help me root it out, I will spare your life.
I had no accomplices, Your Grace.
...all you who defiled your sacred marriage beds...
...and declare your sin. Stand up...
...as we stood against our enemies at sea!
You see, Your Grace...
...there are no accomplices.
He does this to rescue her from your justice.
Then I stand alone for Venice and for this woman.
His trial will commence tomorrow.
Do you wish to speak?
I repeat, do you have something to say to this court?
I am standing.
Perhaps there's another who'd like to stand?
Perhaps we've been hasty, Your Grace.
What are you doing?
Witchcraft may be too harsh a charge.
...I heard about this city true?
Surely the Holy Inquisition need not sully its hands with a common whore.
This is a matter for the state, don't you think?
I leave this woman to Venice...
...which richly deserves her.
DC Sniper 23 Days of Fear
D A R Y L 1985
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