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Look how thy servants do attend on thee,
Each in his office ready at thy beck.
Wilt thou have music? hark! Apollo plays,


And twenty cagèd nightingales do sing:
Or wilt thou sleep? we'll have thee to a couch
Softer and sweeter than the downy bed
On purpose trimm'd up for Semiramis,"
Say thou wilt walk; we will bestrew the ground:
Or wilt thou ride? thy horses shall be trapp'd,
Their harness studded all with gold and pearl.
Dost thou love hawking? thou hast hawks will


Above the morning lark: or wilt thou hunt? Thy hounds shall make the welkin answer them, And fetch shrill echoes from the hollow earth.

First Serv. Say thou wilt course; thy grey

hounds are as swift

As breathed stags," ay, fleeter than the roe.

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Sly. Am I a lord? and have I such a lady Or do I dream? or have I dream'd till now? I do not sleep: I see, I hear, I speak ; I smell sweet savours, and I feel soft things:Upon my life, I am a lord, indeed; And not a tinker, nor Christophero Sly.— Well, bring our lady hither to our sight; And once again, a pot o' the smallest ale.50 Sec. Serv. Will't please your mightiness to wash your hands?

[Servants present a ewer, bason, and napkin. Oh, how we joy to see your wit restor❜d! Oh, that once more you knew but what you are! These fifteen years you have been in a dream;

| Or, when you wak'd, so wak'd as if you slept. Sly. These fifteen years! by my fay, a goodly


Sec. Serv. Dost thou love pictures? we will But did I never speak of all that time?

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44. Semiramis. An Assyrian queen, renowned for her luxury and magnificence.

45. Breathed stags. Here "breathed" is used in the sense of 'well exercised in running,' and (according to Shakespeare's way of combining varied meanings in one word) in the sense of 'well supplied with breath for running.' See Note 49, Act i., "As You Like It."

46. Cytherea. One of the names given to Venus, because she was believed to have risen from the waves of the sea near the island of Cythera.

47. Io. A priestess at Argos, of whom Jupiter became enamoured; and whom he "beguiled and surprised" under the form of a cloud.

48. Daphne. A nymph who, flying from the pursuit of Apollo, entreated the protection of the gods; and was by them transformed to a bay-laurel tree.

49. Yet. Here used in the sense of 'even now,' 'even as it is.' 50. And once again, a pot o' the smallest ale How humorously, by the earnestness and repetition of this call of


First Serv. Oh, yes, my lord; but very idle words:

For though you lay here in this goodly chamber,
Yet would you say, ye were beaten out of door;
And rail upon the hostess of the house;
And say, you would present her at the leet,52
Because she brought stone jugs, and no seal'd
quarts: 53

Sometimes you would call out for Cicely Hacket.
Sly. Ay, the woman's maid of the house.

Third Serv. Why, sir, you know no house, nor

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Sly's, has Shakespeare indicated the thirst that besets the drunkard after his heavy sleep.

51. By my fay. A corruption of 'by my faith.' 52. Present her at the leet. Persons accused of using false weights or measures were presented at the court-leet, a tribunal appointed to judge such offences.

53. Seal'd quarts. Measures holding a quart, and certified by a stamp or seal to be of the requisite size for containing that quantity of liquor.

54. Of Greece. Blackstone plausibly suggested that we should here read 'o' the green.' In the "Second Part of Henry IV." (iii. 2) we find-"Peter Bull-calf of the green," which, in the Folio, is printed "of the Greene."

55. I thank thee. This speech is probably made in answer to one of the servants bringing Sly some of the "sack" and "conserves;" as immediately after he says, "I fare well, for here is cheer enough" which latter words we may imagine to be spoken with his mouth full, while cramming in the good things

before him.


Sly. Well, we'll see't. Come, madam wife, sit by my side, and let the world slip: we shall ne'er be younger.

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Seeing too much sadness hath congeal'd your blood,

And melancholy is the nurse of frenzy:
Therefore they thought it good you hear a play,
And frame your mind to mirth and merriment,
Which bars a thousand harms and lengthens

Sly. Marry, I will; 57 let them play it. Is not


a commonty a Christmas gambol or a tumbling


Page. No, my good lord; it is more pleasing stuff.
Sly. What! household stuff?
Page. It is a kind of history.

Sly. Well, we'll see't. Come, madam wife, sit by my side, and let the world slip: 50 we shall ne'er be younger. [They sit down.

SCENE I.-PADUA. A Public Place.



Luc. Tranio, since, for the great desire I had
To see fair Padua, nursery of arts,'
I am arriv'd for fruitful Lombardy,
The pleasant garden of great Italy;

And, by my father's love and leave, am arm'd
With his good will and thy good company,
My trusty servant, well approv'd in all ;
Here let us breathe, and haply institute
A course of learning and ingenious studies.
Pisa, renowned for grave citizens,
Gave me my being, and my father first,

A merchant of great traffic through the world,
Vincentio, come of the Bentivolii.
Vincentio's son, brought up in Florence,

It shall become, to serve all hopes conceiv'd,
To deck his fortune with his virtuous deeds:
And therefore, Tranio, for the time I study,

57. Marry, I will. Sly, answering the proposal to "hear a play," says, "I will." In the Folio, the stopping is different; and some editors, adopting that punctuation, give the passage rather a different meaning.

58. Commonty. Sly's blunder for 'comedy.'

59. Let the world slip. Sly here varies his favourite adage. See Note 4.

1. Padua, nursery of arts. Padua, possessed of a university founded early in the thirteenth century by Frederick Barbarossa, and boasting among its most celebrated students Petrarch, Galileo, and Columbus, was long famed as a seat of erudition. In Florio's "Second Frutes," where there is an enumeration of some of Italy's chief cities, Padua thus figures--" Milan great, Venice rich, Genoa proud, Bologna fertile, Naples gentle, Florence fair, Padua learned, Ravenna ancient, and Rome holy." 2. Ingenious. It has been pointed out that in Shakespeare's time this word was sometimes used for 'ingenuous;' but in the present passage "ingenious" may equally well be taken in its stricter sense of intellectual, scientific.

3. Vincentio. This, in the Folio, is misprinted 'Vincentio's,' probably because the printer's eye caught it from the line immediately below. It has been objected that it is absurd to make Lucentio tell Tranio his old master's name; but it might be

Virtue, and that part of philosophy
Will I apply, that treats of happiness
By virtue specially to be achiev'd.
Tell me thy mind; for I have Pisa left,
And am to Padua come, as he that leaves
A shallow plash, to plunge him in the deep,
And with satiety seeks to quench his thirst.

Tra. Mi perdonate, gentle master mine,
I am in all affected as yourself;
Glad that you thus continue your resolve
To suck the sweets of sweet philosophy.
Only, good master, while we do admire
This virtue and this moral discipline,
Let's be no stoics nor no stocks, I pray;
Or so devote9 to Aristotle's ethics,10
As Ovid be an outcast quite abjur'd:
Balk" logic with acquaintance that you have,
And practise rhetoric in your common talk;
Music and poesy use to quicken you;
The mathematics and the metaphysics,

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5. Apply. This word was formerly employed as we now use the word 'ply,' practise diligently. It was used elliptically for ' apply the mind to,' 'apply the faculties to the acquirement of, or practice of.'

6. Plash. Pool, pond, puddle; small piece of water. 7. Mi perdonate. Italian; 'pardon me.'

8. Affected. Inclined; disposed towards. 9. Devote. ourselves.' 10. Ethics. The Folio here prints 'checkes.' Blackstone suggested the correction. 11. Balk. To wrangle as a disputant, to altercate in reasoning. To " 'balk logic" was formerly used as we now use 'to chop logic.' Rowe altered "balk" to 'talk,' and he is followed in some editions; but "balk" was employed by Spenser and other writers of his time, as by Shakespeare in the present passage.

Used for 'devoted,' or (elliptically) for 'devote

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16. To make a stale of me amongst these mates? Katharina, hearing her father thus coarsely offer her in marriage, like goods hawked about for sale, asks him if it be his will to make her this commonised ware among these chapmen companions. She not only uses the word "mates" in the sense of companions,' which has been shown to have been often employed disparagingly in Shakespeare's time (see Note 7, Act iii., Merry Wives"); but there is a kind of punning reference to the terms 'stale' and 'mate' at chess, which signify positions of awkwardness and dilemma in the game, and (figuratively) apply to the humiliating position in which she is placed by Baptista's unfatherly speech. Horatio, feeling the sting in the word "mates" as Katharina uses it, replies by employing it in the sense of partners for life-husbands.

17. I wis. I know, I am certain. See Note 112, Act ii.,

"Merchant of Venice."

18. Use you like a fool. The rough usage to which the heads of professional fool-jesters were subjected has been shown in Note 17, Act v., "Comedy of Errors." 19. Peat.

A form of 'pet,' from the French petite, little;

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Tra. Hush, master! here is some good pastime toward:

That wench is stark mad, or wonderful froward.
Luc. But in the other's silence do I see
Maid's mild behaviour and sobriety.
Peace, Tranio !

Tra. Well said, master; mum! and gaze your fill.

Bap. Gentlemen, that I may soon make good
What I have said,-Bianca, get you in:
And let it not displease thee, good Bianca;
For I will love thee ne'er the less, my girl.

Kath. A pretty peat !19 it is best
Put finger in the eye,-an she knew why.

Bian. Sister, content you in my discontent.20 —
Sir, to your pleasure humbly I subscribe:
My books and instruments shall be my company,
On them to look, and practise by myself.

Luc. Hark, Tranio! thou mayst hear Minerva


Hor. Signior Baptista, will you be so strange 21 Sorry am I that our good will effects Bianca's grief.

Gre, Why will you mew her up,22 Signior Baptista, for this fiend-like shrew, And make her bear the penance of her tongue? Bap. Gentlemen, content ye; I am resolv'd:— Go in, Bianca :[Exit BIANCA.

often used as a term of endearment. Katharina uses it in indignant allusion to the partiality of the father; petting and soothing one sister, who has been nowise injured, while degrading the other, and subjecting her to insult.

Bianca so generally pro

20. Content you in my discontent. duces the same impression upon superficial observers that she does upon Lucentio, that we take the pains to point out those passages where the character displays itself according to our view of Shakespeare's intention in its delineation. He has drawn it subtly, by skilful touches, scarcely perceptible to casual lookers-on; but clearly visible to those who know how false a reputation such mincing pretenders to sweetness, such demure affecters of modesty, such artful assumers of meekness, almost universally obtain. In these very first lines she utters, we find Bianca, under appearance of a mild appeal to her sister, really uttering an uncharitable insinuation that Katharina will take delight in her being sent to her room-just the unkind construction that would peculiarly gall a nature like Kate's; and then she goes on to parade her excess of filial obedience, and her ultra-devotion to solitary study. Artful and artificial is Bianca from first to last. She gains herself a name for gentleness of temper by making a foil out of her sister's violence of temper, and causes herself to appear charming by forming the extremest of contrasts with Katharina's conduct in all things.

21. Strange. Used here for odd in conduct,' 'peculiar in resolve.'

22. Mew her up. Shut her up; confine or imprison her, as in a cage. See Note 10, Act i., "Midsummer Night's Dream."

And for 23 I know she taketh most delight
In music, instruments, and poetry
Schoolmasters will I keep within my house,
Fit to instruct her youth.—If you, Hortensio,—
Or Signior Gremio, you,―know any such,
Prefer them hither; for to cunning 25 men
I will be very kind, and liberal

To mine own children in good bringing-up:
And so, farewell.-Katharina, you may stay;
For I have more to commune with Bianca. [Exit.
Kath. Why, and I trust I may go too, may
1 not?

What! shall I be appointed hours; as though, belike,

I knew not what to take, and what to leave, ha ? [Exit. Gre. You may go to the world's end: your gifts are so good, here's none will hold you.Their love is not so great," Hortensio, but we may blow our nails 28 together, and fast it fairly out: our cake's dough on both sides.29 Farewell:-yet, for the love I bear my sweet Bianca, if I can by any means light on a fit man to teach her that wherein she delights, I will wish him to her father.30

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Gre. What's that, I pray?

tensio, though her father be very rich, any man is so very a fool to be married to her?

Hor. Tush, Gremio, though it pass your patience and mine to endure her loud alarums, why, man, there be good fellows in the world, an a man could light on them, would take her with all faults and money enough.

Gre. I cannot tell; but I had as lief take her dowry with this condition,-to be whipped at the high-cross every morning.

Hor. Faith, as you say, there's small choice in rotten apples. But, come; since this bar in law makes us friends, it shall be so far forth friendly maintained, till by helping Baptista's eldest daughter to a husband, we set his youngest free for a husband, and then have to't afresh.-Sweet Bianca! Happy man be his dole!" He that runs fastest gets the ring.35 How say you, Signior Gremio?

Gre. I am agreed: and would I had given him the best horse in Padua to begin his wooing, that would thoroughly woo her, wed her, and rid the house of her! Come on.

[Exeunt GREMIO and HORTENSIO. Tra. [Advancing.] I pray, sir, tell me,—is it possible

That love should of a sudden take such hold?

Luc. Oh, Tranio, till I found it to be true,
I never thought it possible or likely;
But see! while idly I stood looking on,
I found the effect of love in idleness:

And now in plainness do confess to thee,—
That art to me as secret and as dear
As Anna to the Queen of Carthage was,-

Hor. Marry, sir, to get a husband for her sister. Tranio, I burn, I pine, I perish, Tranio,


A husband! a dotard. Hor. I say, a husband. Gre. I say, a dotard.

If I achieve not this young modest girl.
Counsel me, Tranio, for I know thou canst;

Thinkest thou, Hor- Assist me, Tranio, for I know thou wilt.

23. And for I know she taketh, &c. "For" used in the sense of 'because.

24. Prefer them hither. Send them hither for acceptance; present them to me that I may engage their services. Shakespeare uses "prefer " and "preferred" in this sense elsewhere. See Note 39, Act iv., "Midsummer Night's Dream."

25. Cunning. Skilful, proficient. See Note 26, Induction. 26. Your gifts are so good. One of Shakespeare's ironical phrases. "Gifts" is here used for 'qualities,' ' endowments.' 27. Their love is not so great. "Their" in this sentence has puzzled the commentators, who have variously altered it to 'our,' 'your,' 'this,' &c. But "their" seems to us to refer to 'gifts;" in which case the meaning would be, 'The love of her gifts is not so great on our parts, Hortensio, as to induce either of us to marry Katharina, and enable the other to win Bianca ; therefore we may bear our impatience as well as we may together.'


28. Blow our nails. A colloquial expression then in use for remaining baffled, unable to take any steps in a vexatious affair. See Note 174, Act v., "Love's Labour's Lost." South, in one of his sermons, says-" So that the king, for anything that he has to do in these matters, may sit and blow his nails; for use them otherwise he cannot."

29. Our cake's dough on both sides. A proverbial expression, signifying, our prospect of success has turned out a failure, like

a cake put down to the embers to bake, and sometimes proving scorched on one side, and underdone, or dough, on the other; sometimes dough on both.

30. I will wish him to her father. "Wish," as here, was formerly sometimes used in the sense of 'recommend.'

31. Parle. A form of 'parley.' See Note 13, Act i., "Two Gentlemen of Verona."

32. Upon advice. Upon reflection; upon deliberation; upon farther consideration.

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33 It toucheth us both. It concerns us both; it is of importance to us both. "Dole" is a portion, that 34. Happy man be his dole! which is dealt out; therefore the saying means, May happiness be his lot! See Note 37, Act iii., "Merry Wives of Windsor." 35. He that runs fastest gets the ring. An allusion to running matches, where a "ring" was the prize; and also to the wedding ring, which husbands as well as wives formerly wore.

36. Woo her. "Her," of course, here refers to Katharine, though Bianca was last mentioned; affording an instance of Shakespeare's using a pronoun relatively to an antecedent not immediately named before.

37. Anna. Sister to Dido, and her confidant when the latter was in love with Æneas. See Note 7, Act ii., "Tempest." Anna is mentioned in Book IV. of Dryden's translation of Virgil's Æneid.

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