He cried upon it at the merest loss,
And twice to-day pick'd out the dullest scent :
Trust me, I take him for the better dog.
^ Go hy, says Jeronimy ; — Go to thy cold bed, and marm
e.'^ These phrases are allusions to a fustian old play, called
Hieronymo, or the Spanish Tragedy, which was the common butt
of raillery to all the poets in Shakspeare's time.
'' the thirdborough.] The office of Thirdborough is the
same with that of Corisfable, except in places where there are both,
in whiqh case the former is little more than the constable's assistant.
' Brach Alerriman, — the poor cur is einboss'd,] The Commen-
tators are not agreed as to the meaning of bi-ach ; it is a species
of hound, but of what kind, uncertain. Mr. Malone thinks that
Brach is a verb ; and Sir' T. Hanmer reads Leech Merriman : i, e.
apply some remedies to him.
Embossed is a hunting term. When a deer is hard run, and
foams at the mouth, he is said to be embossed. A dog also when
he is strained with hard-running (especially upon hard ground,)
will have his knees swelled, and then he is said to be embQus'd .'
; from the French word basse, which signifies a tumour.
TxiMING OF THE SHREW. 333
Lord. TIiou art a fool ; if Echo were as fleet,
I would esteem him worth a dozen sueli.
But sup them well, and look unto them all ;
To-morrow I intend to hunt asain.
1 IIiui. I will, mv lord.
Lord. What's here ? one dead, or drunk ? See,
doth he breathe?
2 Jinn. He breathes, my lord : Were he not
warm'd with ale,
This were a bed but cold to sleep so soundlv.
Lord. O monstrous beast ! how like a swine lie
Grim death, how foul and loathsome is thine image!
Sirs, I will practise on this drunken man.
Wliat think you, if he were convey'd to bed,
Wrapj/d in sweet clothes, rings put upon his fingers,
A most delicious banquet by his bed,
And brave attendants near him when he wakes,
Would not the besuar then forsret himself?
1 Ilitn. Believe me, lord, I think he cannot
2 IIiui. It would seem strange unto him when
Lord. Even as a flattering dream, or worthless
Tlien take him up, and manage wtII the jest : —
Carry him gently to mv fairest chamber,
And hang it round with all niy wanton pictures :
JialiM his foul head with warm distilled waters,
And burn sweet wood to make the lodging sweet :
Procure me musick ready when he wakes,
To make a dulcet and a heavenly sound ;
And if he chance to speak, be ready straight,
And, with a low submissive reverence.
Say, — \\ li;it is it ^ uur honour will command ?
L»'t one attend him with a silver bason,
Full of rose-water, and bestrew'd with flower.s j
334 TAMING OF THE SHREW.
Another bear the ewer, the third a diaper,
And say, — Will't please your lordship cool your
Some one be ready with a costly suit,
And ask him what ajjparel he will wear ;
Another tell him of his hounds and horse,
And that his lady mourns at his disease :
Persuade him, that he hath been lunatick ;
And, when he says he is — , say, that he dreams,
For he is nothing but a mighty lord.
This do, and do it kindly,^ gentle sirs ;
It will be pastime passing excellent.
If it be husbanded with modesty I^
1 Hull. Mylord, I warrant you, we'll play ourpart;
As he shall think, by our true diligence.
He is no less than what we say he is.
Lord. Take him up gently, and to bed with him ;
And each one to his office, when he wakes. —
\_Some bear out Sly. A trumpet soufids.
Sirrah, go see what trumpet 'tis that sounds : —
Belike, some noble gentleman : that means.
Travelling some journey, to repose him here.-^
Re-enter a Servant.
How now ? who is it }
Serv. An it please your honour,
Players that offer service to your lordship.
Lord. Bid them come near : —
Now, fellows, you are welcome.
1 Play. We thank your honour.
Lord. Do you intend to stay with me to-night ?
8 This do, and do it kindly,] Kindly, means naturally.
^ modesty.'} By modesty is meant moderation, without
suffering our merriment to break into an exces$.
TAjNIING of the shrew. 335
2 Play. 80 please your lordship to accept our
Lord. With all my heart. — This fellow I remem-
Since once he play'd a farmer's eldest son ; —
'Twas where you woo'd the gentlewoman so well :
I have forgot your name ; but, sure, that part
'\^^as aptlv fitted, and naturally perform'd.
1 PUiij. I think, 'twas JSoto, that your honour
Lord. 'Tis very true ; — thou didst it excellent.—
"Well, vou are come to me in happy time ;
The rather for I have some sport in hand,
^Vherein your cunning can assist me much.
There is a lord will hear you play to-night :
But I am doubtful of your modesties ;
J^st, over-eying of his odd behaviour,
(For yet his honour never heard a play,)
You break into some merry passion.
And so offend him ; for I tell you, sirs,
If you should smile, he grows impatient.
i Plaij. Fear not, my lord ; we can contain our-
Were he the veriest antick in the world.
Lord. Go, sirrah, take them to the buttery.*
' lo accept our duty.'] It was in those times the custom of
|)layers to travel in companies, and otier their service at great
* take them to the buttery,] Mr. Pope had probably these
words in his thoughts, when he wrote the following passage of his
preface : " — the top of the profession were then mere phiyers,
not gentlemen of the stage ; they were led into the butttri/ by the
htcvard, not placed at tlu' lord's ta!)lc,(n the lady's toilette." But
he seems not to have observed, that the players here introduced
are strollers : and there is no reason to suppose that our author,
fleminge, Riirbage, C«)ndelle, &c. who were licensed by King
James, wcri- treated in this manner. Malone.
At tli(; |)eriod when this comedy wa^ written, and for many
years alter, tlie profession of a player was scarcely allowed to be
336 TAMING OF THE SHREW.
And give them friendly welcome every one :
Let them want nothing that my house affords. —
[^E.veunt Servant and Players*
Sirrah, go you to Bartholomew my page,
[To a Servant.
And see him dress'd in all suits like a lady :
That done, conduct him to the drunkard's chamber.
And call him — madam, do him obeisance.
Tell him from me, (as he will win my love,)
He bear himself with honourable action.
Such as he hath observ'd in noble ladies
Unto their lords, by them accomplished :
Such duty to the drunkard let him do.
With soft low tongue, and lowly courtesy ;
And say, — What is't your honour will command,
Wherein your lady, and your humble wife.
May show her duty, and make known her love ?
And then -r- with kind cmbracemcnts, tempting
And with declining head into his bosom,- —
Bid him shed tears, as being overjoy'd
To see her noble lord restor'd to health.
Who, for twice seven years, hath esteemed him
No better than a poor and loathsome beggar ;
And if the boy have not a woman's gift.
To rain a shower of commanded tears.
An onion' will do well for such a shift ;
Which in a napkin being close convey'd,
reputable. The im'agined dignity of those wlio did not belong to
itinerant companies, is, thei'efore, unworthy consideration. I can
as easily believe that the blundering editors of the tirst folio were
suffered to lean their hands on Queen Elizabeth's chair of state,
as that they w ere admitted to the table of the Earl of Leicester,
or tlie toilette of Lady Ilunsdon. Like Stephen in Every Man
in his IIumoHry the greatest indulgence our histrionic leaders
could have expected, would have been " a trencher and a nap-
kin in the buttery." Stkevens.
2 An onion — ] It is not unlikely that the onion was an expe-
dient used by the actors of interludes.
TAMING OF THE SHREW. 337
Shall in despite enforce a watery eye.
See this despatch'd with all the haste thou canst;
Anon rU give thee more instructions.
I know, the boy will well usurp the grace,
Voice, gait, and action of a gentlewoman :
I long to hear him call the drunkard, husband ;
And how my men will stay themselves from
When they do homage to this simple peasant.
Ill in to counsel them : haply, my presence.
May well abate the over-merry spleen,
Which otherwise would grow into extremes.
A Bedchamber in the Lord's House.
Sly /.? discovered in a rich night goxcnj ii-ith At-
tendants ; some ivitli apparel, others u'ith hason,
cxccr, and other appurtenances. Enter Lord,
dressed like a Servant.
Sli/. For God's sake, a pot of small ale.
1 Serv. Will't please your lordship drink a cup of
2 Serv. Will't please your honour taste of these
3 Serv. \Vliat raiment will your honour wear to-
.S7y. I am Christophero Sly ; call not me — honour,
nor lordshij) : I never drank sack in my life; and it
you give me any conserves, give me conserves ot
beef: Ne'er ask me what raiment I'll wear : f«»r I
have no move doublets than backs, no more stock-
338 TAMING OF THE SHREW.
ings than legs, nor no more shoes than feet ; nay,
sometimes, more feet than shoes, or such shoes as
my toes look through the overleather.
Lo7^d. Heaven cease this idle humour in your ho»
O, that a mighty man, of such descent.
Of such possessions, and so high esteem,
Should be infused with so foul a spirit !
Sly. What, would you make me mad ? Am not
I Christopher Sly, old Sly's son of Burton-heath;*
by birth a pedlar, by education a card-maker, by
transmutation a bear-herd, and now by present pro-
fession a tinker ? Ask Marian Hacket, the fat ale-
wife of Wincot, if she know me not : if she say I
am not fourteen pence on the score for sheer ale,
score me up for the lyingest knave in Christendom.
What, I am not bestraught : ' Here's
1 Serv. O, this it is that makes your lady mourn.
2 Serv. O, this it is that makes your servants
■Lord. Hence comes it that your kindred shun
As beaten hence by your strange lunacy.
O, noble lord, bethink thee of thy birth ;
Call home thy ancient thoughts from banishment.
And banish hence these abject lowly dreams ;
Look how thy servants do attend on thee.
Each in his office ready at thy beck.
Wilt thou have musick ? hark ! Apollo plays,
* o/' Burton-heath > i . Marian Hacket, the fat ale-iKife of
Wincot,] I suspect we should read — £«rto?z-heath. Barton and
Wocdmancotj or, as it is vulgarly pronounced, Woncot, are both
of them in Gloucestershire, near the residence of Shakspeare's
old enemy. Justice Shallow. Very probably too, this fat ale-
wife might be a real character. Steevens.
^ lam not bestraught :] Bestraught seems to have been
Synonymous to distratt^ht or distracted.
TAMING OF THE SHREW. [339
And twenty c?igcd iiigbtino-alos do sing:
Or wilt thou sleep ? Nve'll have thee to a couch,
.Softer and sweeter than the lustful bed
On purpose trinnn'd up for Semiraniis.
8av, thou wilt walk : we will bestrew the ground :
Or wilt thou ride ? tliy horses shall be trapp d,
Their harness studded all with gold and pearl.
Dost thou love hawking- ? thou hast hawks will
Above the niornins; lark : Or wilt thou hunt?
Thy hounds shall make the welkni answer them.
And fetch shrill echoes from the hollow earth.
1 Serv. Say, thou wilt course ; thy greyhounds
are as swift
As breathed stags, ay, fleeter than the roe.
2 Se?'V. Dost thou love pictures r we will fetch
Adonis, ])ainted by a running brook :
And Cytherea all in sedges hid ;
\\'hieh seem to move and wanton with her breath.
Even as the waving sedges play with wind.
Lord. We'll show thee lo, as $he was a maid ;
And how she was beguiled and surj)ris'd.
As lively painted as the deed was done.
3 Serv. Or Daphne, roaming througli a thorny
Scratchino" her le^s that one shall swear she bleeds :
And at that sight shall sad A])ollo weep,
So workmanly the blood and tears are drawn.
Lord. Thou art a lord, and nothing but a lord :
Thou hast a ladv far more beautiful
Than any woman in this waning age.
1 iitrv. And, till the tears that she hath shed for
Like envious floods, o'er-ran her lovely face,
She was tiie fairest creatine in the world ;
And yet she is inferior to none.
340 TAMING OF THE SHREW.
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.
1 Sew. Wiirt please your mightiness to wash
your hands ?
[Servants present an ewer, bason, and napkin.
O, how we joy to see your wit restor'd !
O, that onc(^ 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 nap.
But did I never speak of all that time ?
1 Serv. O, 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,^
Because she brought stone jugs and no seal'd quarts :
Sometimes you would call out for Cicely Hacket.
Sly. Ay, the woman's maid of the house.
3 Serv. Why, sir, you know no house, nor no
such maid ;
Nor no such men, as you have reckon'd up, —
As Stephen Sly, and old John Naps of Greece,
And Peter Turf, and Henry Pimpernell ;
And twenty more such names and men as these.
Which never were, nor no man ever saw.
Sly. Now, Lord be thanked for my good amends!
Sly. I thank thee ; thou shalt not lose by it.
^ lec.t,'\ At the Court-leet, or courts of the manor.
TAMING OF THE SHREW. 341
Enter the Page, as a lady, with Attendants.
Pase. How fares my noble lord ?
Siy. Marrv, I fare well ; for here is cheer enough.
Where is my wife ?
Page. Here, noble lord ; What is thy will with
Sly. Are you my wife, and will not call me —
My men should call me — lord ; I am your goodman.
Page. My husband and my lord, my lord and
I am your wife in all obedience.
Sly. I know it well :^-What must I call her ?
Sly. Al'ce madam, or Joan madam ?
Lord. Madam, and nothing else ; so lords call
Sly. Madam wife^ they say that I have dream'd,
Above some fifteen year and more.
Pane. Ay, and the time seems thirty unto me ;
Beini!; all this time aljandon'd from your bed.
Sly. 'Tis nuirh ;• Servants, leavr me and her
Madam, undress vou, and come now to bed.
Page. Tlirice noble lord, let me entreat of you^
To ]3ardon me yet i'or a night or two ;
Or, if not so, until th(? sun be set:
For you4- physicians have expressly charg'd,
In })eril to incin* yuur former malady,
Tliat I siiould vet absent me from yo\ir bed :
1 lujpe, this reason stands fur my excuse.
Sli/. Ay, it stands <o, that I may hardly tarry so
>i<jn^. lint I would ije loath to fall into my dreanin
aj^ain ; I will tlicri'lyre tan y, in desjjitr of tiie lli'sh
and the blood.
342 TAMING OF THE SHREW.
Enter a Servant.
Ser'v. Your honour's players^ hearing your ameud-
Are come to play a pleasant comedy,
For so your doctors hold it very meet ;
Seeing too much sadness hath congcal'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 life.
Sly. Marry, I will ; let them play it : Is not a
eommonty a Christmas gambol, or a tumbling-
Page. No, my good lord ; it is more pleasing
Sly. What, houshold 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 ; we shall ne'er
be younger. [They sit down.
' 7* not a eommonty a Christmas gambol, or a tinnhUng trich?']
Thus the old copies ; the modern ones read — It is not a com-
modity, &c. Commonty for comedy, &c. Steevens.
In tlie old play the players themselves use the word commodity
corruptly for a comedy. Blackstone.
TAMING OF TIUE SHREW. 343
SCEXE I. Padua. A public Place,
Enter Lucentio aud Trakio.
Luc. Tranio, since — for the great desire I bad
To see fair Padua, nursery of arts, —
I am arriv'd for fruitful Lond)ardy,
The pleasant warden of t^ivat Italy;
And, by my father's love and leave, am arm'd
With his good will, and thy o(K)d company,
Most trusty servant, well approved in all;
Here let us breathe, and happily 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 traffick tlirough the world,
Vineentio, come of the Bentivolii.
\'inccntio his son, brought up in Florence,
It shall become, to serve all hopes eoneeiv'd,^
To deck his fortune with his virtuous deeds :
And therefore, Tranio, for the time I study,
\'irtuc, and that part of philosophy
Will I apply, that treats of happiness
By virtue 'specially to be achiev'd.
'i ell jne thy mind : for I have Pisa left,
And am to Padua come ; as he that leaves
A shallow plav^h, to plunge him in the deep,
And with satii'ty seeks to quench his thirst.
8 iticrcjiious — "i It was prohubly written -:-/7/or««aw?
Ktodic-s, l)ut ottliis and ji tlMmsaacl such obscrvutions tlicic is lit-
tle ctrtaiiit). In Cole's Diclionari/, 1G77, it is remarked — " in-
genuous and iu'^ctiioufi aru too of'tt ii coMrouiidcd."
' /o serve uU hopes conceivd,] To I'uitil tlic cxpcctutions
of liis Iriends.
VUL. III. E K
344 TAMING OF THE SHREW,
Tra. Mi per donate^ gentle master mine,
I am in all affected as yom-self ;
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 stoicks, nor no stocks, I pray ;
Or so devote to Aristotle's checks,'
As Ovid be an outcast quite abjur'd :
Talk logick with acquaintance that you have,
And practise rhetorick in your common talk :
Musick and poesy use to quicken you ; "^
The mathematicks, and the metaphysicks.
Fall to them, as you find your stomach serves you :
No profit grows, where is no pleasure ta'en ; — ^
In brief, sir, study what you most affect.
Luc. Gramercies, Tranio, well dost thou advise.
If, Biondello, thou wert come ashore.
We could at once put us in readiness ;
And take a lodging, fit to entertain
i^uch friends, as time in Padua shall beget.
But stay awhile : What company is this ?
Tra. Master, some show, to welcome us to town.
Enter Baptij>ta, Katharina, Bianca, Gremio,
and HoRTENSio. Lucentio and Tranio stand
Bap. Gentlemen, importune me no further.
For how I firmly am resolv'd you know ;
That is, — not to bestow my youngest daughter.
Before I have a husband for the elder :
If either of you both love Katharina,
Aristotle's checks,] Tranio is here descantiog on aca-
demical learning, and mentions by name six of the seven liberal
sciences. I suspect this to be a mis-print, made by some copyist
or compositor, for ethicks. The sense confirms it. Blackstone.
*— — — to quicken 3^ow;j i. c. animate.
TAMING OF THE SHREW. 315
Because I know you well, and love you well,
Leave shall vou have to court her at your pleasure.
Ore. To cart her rather : She's too rough for
n\e : —
There, there Hortensio, will you any wife ?
Kath. 1 pray you, sir, [To Bap.] is it your will
To make a stale of me amongst these mates ?
Hur. Mates, maid ! how mean you that ? no
mates for you.
Unless you were of gentler, milder mould.
Kath. Ffaith, sir, you shall never need to feari
I wis, il is not half way to her heart :
lint, if it were, doubt not her care should be
To comb your noddle with a three-legg'd stool,
^nd ])aint your face, and use you like a fool.
Hor. From all such devils, good Lord, deliver
Grc. And me too, good Lord!
Tra. Hush, master! here is some good pastime
That wench is stark mad, or wonderful froward.
Luc. Hut in the other's silence I do see
Maid's mild behaviour and sobriety.
Tra. Well said, master; mum! and gaze your
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 !^ 'tis best
Put finger in the eye, — an she knew why.
Bian. Sister, content you in my discontent.—
Sir, to your pleasure humbly I subscribe :
' A prctti/ peat!] Peat or pet is a word of endearnnent ir«rm
pclit, htllc, an il' it uifcuat pretty little thiojj.
346 TAMING OF THE SHREW.
jNIy books, and instruments, shall be my company;
On them to look, and practise by myself.
Luc. Hark, Tranio! thou may'st hear Minerva
Ilor. Signior Baptista, will you be so strange?*
Sorry am I, that our good will eftects
Bianca s grief.
GrC' Why, will you mew her up,
Signior Baptista, for this fiend of hell.
And make her bear the penance of her tongue ?
Bap. Gentlemen, content ye ; I am resolv'd :—
Go in, Bianca. \_Eiit Bianca.
And for I know, she takcth most delight
In musick, 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 men^
I will be very kind, and liberal
To mine own children in good bringing-up ;
And so faievvell. Katharina you may stay;
For I have more to commune with Bianca. \^Exif,
Kath. Why, and I trust, I may go too ; May I
What, shall I be appointed hours ; as though, bcr
I knew not what to take, and what to leave ? Ha !
Gre. You may go to the devil's dam ; your gifts*
are so good, here is none will hold you. Their love
is not so great, Hortensio, but we may blow our
4 SO strange?'] That is, so odd, so different from others
in your conduct. Johnson.
s cunning men — ] Cunning had not yet lost its original
signification oC knoiving, learned, as may be observed in the trans-
lation of tiie Bible. Johnson.
* — — your gifts — ] ^Gifis for endownents.
TAMING OF THE SHREW. 347
nails together, and fast it fairly out ; our cake's
dough on both sides. Farewell : — Yet, for the love
I bear mv sweet Bianea, if I can by any means light
on a tit mm, toteaeh her that wherein she delights,
I will wish him to her father/
Hur. So will 1, signior Gremio : But a word, 1
pray. Tliough the nature of our quarrel yet never
brook'd jjarle, know now, ujjou advice,^ it toucheth
us both, — that wc may yet again have access to our
fair mistress, and be hap])y rival's in Bianca's love, —
to labour and eftbct one tiling 'specially,
Gre. ^Miat's that, I pray ?
Hur. Marrv, sir, to get a husband for her sister.
Crre. A husband! a devil.
I lor. I ?ay, a husband.
Gre. I sav, a devil: Think'st thou, Hortcnsio,
though her father be very rich, any man is so very
a fool to be married to hell ?
llor. Tush, Gremio, though it pass your patience
and mine, to endure her loud alarums, why, man,
I here be jiood fellows in the world, an a man could
light on them, would take her with all faults^ and
Grv. I cannot tell ; but I had as lief take her
dowry with this condition, — to be whipped at the
high-cross every morning.
Hur. 'Faith, as you say, tlierc's small choice in
rotten a])ples. But, come; since this bar in Jaw
makes us friends, it shall be so far forth friendly
maintained, — till by helping Baptista's eldest daugh-
rcr to a husband, we set his youngest free for a hus-
band, and tlicii have to't alVesh. — Sweet JJianca! —
Ilajjpv man behisdole!'^ lie that runs fastest, gets
tlie ring. I low say you, t^ignior Gremio ?
■' I nill wish him toiler father.'] i. c. I will rccnmmeiulhim.
* upon advice,] i. c. on considcigtion, or reflection.
** Ilfippy man Lc his dole ! j A proverbial expression. Dole U
348 TAMING OF THE SHREW.
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 bed her, and rid
the house of her. Come on.
\^xeunt Gremio and Hortensio.
Tra. [^Advancing.'] I pray, sir, tell me, — Is it
That love should of a sudden take such hold ?
Luc. O Tranio, till I found it to be true,
I never thought it possible, or likely ;