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not a lawful cause for me to leave his service,-Look you, Sir,-
Whom, 'would to God, I had well knock'd at first,
Pet. A senseless villain-Good Hortensio,
I bade the rascal knock upon your gate,
Spake you not these words plain,—Sirrah, knock me here,
Pet. Such wind as scatters young men through the world,
Where small experience grows. But, in a few,*
Signior Hortensio, thus it stands with me:-
And I have thrust myself into this maze,
Hor. Petruchio, shall I then come roundly to thee.
Pet. Signior Hortensio, 'twixt such friends as we,
(As wealth is burden of my wooing dance),
Be she as foul as was Florentia's love,
I come to wive it wealthily 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 ;t 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.
† A small image on the tag of a lace.
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;
Is, that she is intolerably curst,
And shrewed, and froward; so beyond all measure,
I would not wed her for a mine of gold.
Pet. Hortensio, peace; thou know'st not gold's effect :-
For I will board her, though she chide as loud
An affable and courteous gentleman:
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,
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; an 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: You know him not, Sir.
Hor. Tarry, Petruchio, I must go with thee;
For in Baptista's keept 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
(For those defects I have before rehearsed),
Therefore this order§ hath Baptista ta'en;-
Till Katharine the curst have got a husband.
A title for a maid, of all titles the worst.
Hor. Now shall my friend Petruchio do me grace; And offer me, disguised in sober robes,
To old Baptista as a schoolmaster
Well seen in music, to instruct Bianca;
* I. e. like a parrot.
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!
Hark you, Sir: I'll have them very fairly bound:
Signior Baptista's liberality,
I'll mend it with a largess :-Take your papers too,
To whom they go to. What will you read to her?
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 promised 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, Î warrant you.
Hor. "Tis well: and I have met a gentleman,
Hath promised me to help me to another,
A fine musician to instruct our mistress!
To fair Bianca, so beloved of me.
Gre. Beloved of me,-and that my deeds shall prove.
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,
Hortensio, have you told him all her faults?
Gre. No, say'st me so, friend? What countryman?
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 will you woo this wild cat?
Pet. Will I live?
Gru. Will he woo her? ay, or I'll hang her.
Loud 'larums, neighing steeds, and trumpets' clang?
That gives not half so great a blow to the ear,
As will a chestnut in a farmer's fire?
Tush! tush! fear boys with bugs.*
Gre. Hortensio, hark!
This gentleman is happily arrived,
My mind presumes, for his own good, and yours.
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.
Enter TRANIO, bravely apparelled; 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 [Aside to TRANIO] he you mean?
Tra. Even he.
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.
* Fright boys with bug-bears.
Hor. Sir, a word ere you go;—
Are you a suitor to the maid you talk of, yea, or no?
Gre. No; if, without more words, you will get you hence.
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.
To whom my father is not all unknown;
Gre. What! this gentleman will out-talk us all.
Pet. Sir, Sir, the first's for me; let her go by.
Pet. Sir, understand you this of me, insooth :-
Tra. If it be so, Sir, then you are the man
For our access,-whose hap shall be to have her,
Hor. Sir, you say well, and well you do conceive;
↑ Wear away.