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Hor. Petruchio, shall I then come roundly to thee,
And wish thee to a shrewd ill-favour'd wife?
Thou'dst thank me but a little for my counsel:
And yet I'll promise thee she shall be rich,

And very rich :-but thou'rt too much my friend,
And I'll not wish thee to her.

Pet. Signior Hortensio, 'twixt such friends as we,
Few words suffice: and, therefore, if thou know
One rich enough to be Petruchio's wife,
(As wealth is burthen of my wooing dance,)
Be she as foul as was Florentius' love,"
As old as Sybil, and as curst and shrewd
As Socrates' Xantippe, or a worse,
She moves me not, or not removes, at least,
Affection's edge in me; were she as rough
As are the swelling Adriatic seas:

I come to wive it wealthily in Padua ;
If wealthily, then happily in Padua.

Gru. Nay, look you, sir, he tells you flatly what his mind is: Why, give him gold enough, and marry him to a puppet, or an aglet-baby;7 or an old trot, with ne'er a tooth in her head, though she have as many diseases as two and fifty horses: why, nothing comes amiss, so money comes withal.

Hor. Petruchio, since we have stepp'd thus far in, I will continue that I broach'd in jest.

I can, Petruchio, help thee to a wife

With wealth enough, and young, and beauteous;
Brought up, as best becomes a gentlewoman:
Her only fault, (and that is faults enough,)

Is, that she is intolerably curst,

And shrewd, and froward; so beyond all measure,
That, were my state far worser than it is,

I would not wed her for a mine of gold.

Pet. Hortensio, peace; thou know'st not gold's effect: -Tell me her father's name, and 'tis enough; For I will board her, though she chide as loud As thunder, when the clouds in autumn crack. Hor. Her father is Baptista Minola,

[6] The allusion is to a story told by Gower in the first Book De Confes sione Amantis. Florent is the name of a knight who had bound himself to marry a deformed hag, provided she taught him the solution of a riddle on which his life depended. STEEV.

[7] i.e. a diminutive being,not exceeding in size the tag of a point. STEE.

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An affable and courteous gentleman:
Her name is Katharina Minola,

Renown'd in Padua for her scolding tongue.

Pet. I know her father, though I know not her;
And he knew my deceased father well:—
I will not sleep, Hortensio, till I see her;
And therefore let me be thus bold with you,
To give you over at this first encounter,
Unless you will accompany me thither.

Gru. I pray you, sir, let him go while the humour lasts. O' my word, an she knew him as well as I do, she would think scolding would do little good upon him: She may, perhaps, call him half a score knaves, or so : why, that's nothing; and he begin once, he'll rail in his rope-tricks, I'll tell you what, sir,-an she stand him but a little, he will throw a figure in her face, and so disfigure her with it, that she shall have no more eyes to see withal than a cat:9 You know him not, sir.

Hor. Tarry, Petruchio, I must go with thee; For in Baptista's keep my treasure is:

He hath the jewel of my life in hold,

His youngest daughter, beautiful Bianca;

And her withholds from me, and other more
Suitors to her, and rivals in my love:
Supposing it a thing impossible,

(For those defects I have before rehears'd,)
That ever Katharina will be woo'd,

Therefore this order hath Baptista taʼen ;—
That none shall have access unto Bianca,
Till Katharine the curst have got a husband.
Gru. Katharine the curst!

A title for a maid, of all titles the worst.

Hor. Now shall my friend Petruchio do me grace: And offer me, disguis'd in sober robes,

To old Baptista as a schoolmaster

Well seen in music, 2 to instruct Bianca:

[8] Ropery or rope-tricks originally signified abusive language, without any determinate idea; such language as parrots are taught to speak. So, in Hudibrass:

"Could tell what subt'lest parrots mean,
"That speak, and think contrary clean;
"What member 'tis of whom they talk,
"When they cry rope, and walk, kave walk."

MAL:

[9] It may mean, that he shall swell up her eyes with blows, till she shall seem to peep with a contracted pupil like a cat in the light. JOHNS. [1] Keep is custody. The strongest part of an ancient castle was called the keep. [2] Seen is versed, practised. STEEV.

STEEV.

That so I may by this device, at least,
Have leave and leisure to make love to her,
And, unsuspected, court her by herself.

Enter GREMIO; with him LUCENTIO disguised, with books under his arm.

Gru. Here's no knavery! See; to beguile the old folks, how the young folks lay their heads together!Master, Master, look about you:-Who goes there? ha! Hor. Peace, Grumio; 'tis the rival of my love: -Petruchio, stand by a while.

Gru. A proper stripling, and an amorous!

[They retire.

Gre. O, very well; I have perus'd the note.
Hark you, sir; I'll have them very fairly bound:
All books of love, see that at any hand;

And see, you read no other lectures to her:
You understand me:-Over and beside

Signior Baptista's liberality,

I'll mend it with a largess:-Take your papers too,
And let me have them very well perfum'd;

For she is sweeter than perfume itself,

To whom they go. What will you read to her?
Luc. Whate'er I read to her, I'll plead for you,
As for my patron, (stand you so assur'd,)
As firmly as yourself were still in place:
Yea, and (perhaps) with more successful words
Than you, unless you were a scholar, sir.
Gre. O this learning! what a thing it is!
Gru. O this woodcock! what an ass it is!
Pet. Peace, sirrah.

Hor. Grumio, mum!-God save you, signior Gremio! Gre. And you're well met, signior Hortensio. Trow you, Whither I am going?-To Baptista Minola.

I promis❜d to inquire carefully

About a schoolmaster for fair Bianca :

And, by good fortune, I have lighted well

On this young man ; for learning, and behaviour,

Fit for her turn; well read in poetry,

And other books,-good ones, I warrant you.

Hor. 'Tis well and I have met a gentleman,

Hath promis'd me to help me to another,
A fine musician to instruct our mistress ;
So shall I no whit be behind in duty
To fair Bianca, so belov'd of me.

Gre. Belov'd of me,-and that my deeds shall prove. Gru. And that his bags shall prove.

[Aside. Hor. Gremio, 'tis now no time to vent our love : Listen to me, and if you speak me fair, I'll tell you news indifferent good for either. Here is a gentleman, whom by chance I met, Upon agreement from us to his liking, Will undertake to woo curst Katharine ; Yea, and to marry her, if her dowry please. Gre. So said, so done, is well :Hortensio, have you told him all her faults?

Pet. I know, she is an irksome brawling scold;

If that be all, masters, I hear no harm.

Gre. No, say'st me so, friend? What countryman ? Pet. Born in Verona, old Antonio's son:

My father dead, my fortune lives for me;

And I do hope good days, and long, to see.

Gre. O, sir, such a life, with such a wife, were strange:

But, if you have a stomach, to't, o' God's name;

You shall have me assisting you in all.

But will you woo this wild cat?

Pet. Will I live?

Gru. Will he woo her? ay, or I'll hang her. [Aside.
Pet. Why came I hither, but to that intent?

Think you, a little din can daunt mine ears?
Have I not in my time heard lions roar?
Have I not heard the sea, puff'd up with winds,
Rage like an angry boar, chafed with sweat?
Have I not heard great ordnance in the field?
And heaven's artillery thunder in the skies?
Have I not in a pitched battle heard

Loud 'larums, neighing steeds, and trumpets' clang?
And do you tell me of a woman's tongue;

That gives not half so great a blow to the ear,
As will a chesnut in a farmer's fire?

Tush, tush! fear boys with bugs.4

Gru. For he fears none.

Gre. Hortensio, hark!

This gentleman is happily arriv'd,

My mind presumes, for his own good, and yours.

[Aside.

[3] Probably the word clangs here used adjectively, as in the Paradise Lost, b. xi. ver. 834. and not as a verb.

an island salt and bare,

The haunt of seals and orcs, and sea-mews clang." T. WARTON.

[4] i. e. with bug-bears. STEEV.

Hor. I promis'd, we would be contributors,
And bear his charge of wooing, whatsoe'er.

Gre. And so we will; provided, that he win her.
Gru. I would I were as sure of a good dinner.

[Asi.

Enter TRANIO, bravely apparell'd; and BIONDELlo. Tra. Gentlemen, God save you! if I may be bold, Tell me, I beseech you, which is the readiest way To the house of signior Baptista Minola?

Gre. He that has the two fair daughters :-is't he you mean? [Aside to TRANIO.

Tra. Even he. Biondello !

Gre. Hark you, sir; you mean not her to

Tra. Perhaps, him and her, sir; What have you to do? Pet. Not her that chides, sir, at any hand, I pray. Tra. I love no chiders, sir :-Biondello, let's away. Luc. Well begun, Tranio.

Hor. Sir, a word ere you go ;

[Aside.

Are you a suitor to the maid you talk of, yea, or no?
Tra. An if I be, sir, is it any offence?

Gre. No; if, without more words, you will get you

hence.

Tra. Why, sir, I pray, are not the streets as free For me, as for you?

Gre. But so is not she.

Tra. For what reason, I beseech you?

Gre. For this reason, if you'll know,

That she's the choice love of signior Gremio.
Hor. That she's the chosen of signior Hortensio.
Tra. Softly, my masters! if you be gentlemen,
Do me this right,-hear me with patience.
Baptista is a noble gentleman,

To whom my father is not all unknown;
And, were his daughter fairer than she is,
She may more suitors have, and me for one.
Fair Leda's daughter had a thousand wooers;
Then well one more may fair Bianca have:
And so she shall; Lucentio shall make one,
Though Paris came, in hope to speed alone.

Gre. What this gentleman will out talk us all.
Luc. Sir, give him head; I know, he'll prove a jade.
Pet. Hortensio, to what end are all these words?
Hor. Sir, let me be so bold as to ask you,

Did you yet ever see Baptista's daughter?

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