Japan, early twentieth century. U.S. Navy Lieutenant B.F. Pinkerton inspects the house he has leased from a marriage broker. The broker, Goro, has procured him three servants and a geisha wife, Cio-Cio-San, known as Madama Butterfly. He is enchanted with the fragile Cio-Cio-San. Cio-Cio-San is heard in the distance joyously singing of her wedding. In a quiet moment, Cio-Cio-San shows her bridegroom her few earthly treasures and tells him of her intention to embrace his Christian faith. The Imperial Commissioner performs the wedding ceremony, and the guests toast the couple. The celebration is interrupted by Cio-Cio-San's uncle, a Buddhist priest, who bursts in, cursing the girl for having renounced her ancestors' religion. Alone with Cio-Cio-San in the moonlit garden, her husband dries her tears, and she joins him in singing of their love.