When Othello is brought before an “ad hoc” court of law for surreptitiously marring Desdemona, Brabantio essentially accuses him of using “witchcraft” as a means of seducing his daughter suggesting,
She is abused . . . By spells and medicines bought of mountebanks . . . Sans witchcraft could not. (1.3.60-64)
Othello emphatically denies any witchcraft and claims his amazing stories are the only "charm" he used. However, later Othello admits that the handkerchief he had given Desdemona (his first gift to her) was given to his mother by a “charmer” and was actually used by his own mother to “subdue [his] father” (3.4.58ff).
While Othello is convincing in his defense of not using witchcraft to woo Desdemona, this story of the Egyptian woman in Act 3 makes it appear that Othello was lying previously. Was his defense a harmless inexactitude; or was he (understandably) lying to save himself from the allegation of using witchcraft to charm Desdemona?
Bate, Jonathan and Rasmussen, Eric. Othello. The Modern Library, 2009.