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The Taming of the Shrew
Act 1, scene 2

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Characters in the Play

Entire Play

The Taming of the Shrew begins with an “induction” in which a nobleman plays a trick on a beggar, Christopher Sly,…

Induction, scene 1

Christopher Sly, a drunken beggar, is driven out of an alehouse by its hostess. A great lord, returning from the…

Induction, scene 2

The newly awakened Sly is offered delicacies and fine clothes. When he demands his usual ale and beef, the lord…

Act 1, scene 1

Lucentio has come with his servant Tranio to Padua to study philosophy. They witness an encounter between Baptista and his…

Act 1, scene 2

Petruchio, with his servant Grumio, has just arrived in Padua. His friend Hortensio suggests that Petruchio woo Katherine. Petruchio enthusiastically…

Act 2, scene 1

Baptista stops Katherine from abusing Bianca and receives a visit from Petruchio, who presents Hortensio (disguised as Litio, a music…

Act 3, scene 1

Under cover of their disguises as schoolmasters, first Lucentio (as Cambio) and then Hortensio (as Litio) try for Bianca’s love….

Act 3, scene 2

Petruchio is late arriving for his wedding, to Katherine’s great embarrassment. When he finally presents himself, he is dressed in…

Act 4, scene 1

At Petruchio’s house in the country, Grumio tells his fellow servant Curtis about the wild journey home to Petruchio’s after…

Act 4, scene 2

In Padua, Hortensio (as Litio) leads Tranio (as Lucentio) to spy on Bianca and Lucentio-Cambio as the couple kiss and…

Act 4, scene 3

At Petruchio’s home, Grumio torments Katherine by promising her food that he fails to bring. Petruchio then serves Katherine himself,…

Act 4, scene 4

In Padua, the Merchant impersonating Vincentio visits Baptista with Tranio, who is still disguised as Lucentio. Baptista accepts the Merchant’s…

Act 4, scene 5

Katherine now gives assent to every word Petruchio says. On their way to her father’s, they meet the true Vincentio,…

Act 5, scene 1

After Bianca has secretly married Lucentio, Petruchio, Katherine, and Lucentio’s father arrive at Lucentio’s lodging. They are rebuffed by the…

Act 5, scene 2

Three couples attend the wedding banquet—Lucentio and Bianca, Petruchio and Katherine, and Hortensio and the Widow. Petruchio is repeatedly teased…

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Scene 2
Enter Petruchio and his man Grumio.

PETRUCHIO 
 Verona, for a while I take my leave
 To see my friends in Padua, but of all
 My best belovèd and approvèd friend,
 Hortensio. And I trow this is his house.
5 Here, sirrah Grumio, knock, I say.
GRUMIO Knock, sir? Whom should I knock? Is there
 any man has rebused your Worship?
PETRUCHIO Villain, I say, knock me here soundly.
GRUMIO Knock you here, sir? Why, sir, what am I, sir,
10 that I should knock you here, sir?
PETRUCHIO 
 Villain, I say, knock me at this gate
 And rap me well, or I’ll knock your knave’s pate.
GRUMIO 
 My master is grown quarrelsome. I should knock
 you first,
15 And then I know after who comes by the worst.
PETRUCHIO Will it not be?
 Faith, sirrah, an you’ll not knock, I’ll ring it.
 I’ll try how you can sol, fa, and sing it.
He wrings him by the ears. Grumio falls.
GRUMIO Help, mistress, help! My master is mad.
PETRUCHIO 20Now knock when I bid you, sirrah
 villain.

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The Taming of the Shrew
ACT 1. SC. 2

Enter Hortensio.

HORTENSIO How now, what’s the matter? My old
 friend Grumio and my good friend Petruchio? How
 do you all at Verona?
PETRUCHIO 
25 Signior Hortensio, come you to part the fray?
 Con tutto il cuore ben trovato, may I say.
HORTENSIO Alia nostra casa ben venuto, molto
 honorato signor mio Petruchio.
—Rise, Grumio,
 rise. We will compound this quarrel.Grumio rises.
GRUMIO 30Nay, ’tis no matter, sir, what he ’leges in
 Latin. If this be not a lawful cause for me to leave
 his service—look you, sir: he bid me knock him
 and rap him soundly, sir. Well, was it fit for a
 servant to use his master so, being perhaps, for
35 aught I see, two-and-thirty, a pip out?
 Whom, would to God, I had well knocked at first,
 Then had not Grumio come by the worst.
PETRUCHIO 
 A senseless villain, good Hortensio.
 I bade the rascal knock upon your gate
40 And could not get him for my heart to do it.
GRUMIO Knock at the gate? O, heavens, spake you not
 these words plain: “Sirrah, knock me here, rap me
 here, knock me well, and knock me soundly”? And
 come you now with “knocking at the gate”?
PETRUCHIO 
45 Sirrah, begone, or talk not, I advise you.
HORTENSIO 
 Petruchio, patience. I am Grumio’s pledge.
 Why, this’ a heavy chance ’twixt him and you,
 Your ancient, trusty, pleasant servant Grumio.
 And tell me now, sweet friend, what happy gale
50 Blows you to Padua here from old Verona?
PETRUCHIO 
 Such wind as scatters young men through the world

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ACT 1. SC. 2

 To seek their fortunes farther than at home,
 Where small experience grows. But in a few,
 Signior Hortensio, thus it stands with me:
55 Antonio, my father, is deceased,
 And I have thrust myself into this maze,
 Happily to wive and thrive, as best I may.
 Crowns in my purse I have and goods at home,
 And so am come abroad to see the world.
HORTENSIO 
60 Petruchio, shall I then come roundly to thee
 And wish thee to a shrewd ill-favored 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,
65 And I’ll not wish thee to her.
PETRUCHIO 
 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 burden of my wooing dance),
70 Be she as foul as was Florentius’ love,
 As old as Sibyl, and as curst and shrewd
 As Socrates’ Xanthippe, or a worse,
 She moves me not, or not removes at least
 Affection’s edge in me, were she as rough
75 As are the swelling Adriatic seas.
 I come to wive it wealthily in Padua;
 If wealthily, then happily in Padua.
GRUMIO, to Hortensio Nay, look you, sir, he tells you
 flatly what his mind is. Why, give him gold enough
80 and marry him to a puppet or an aglet-baby, 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.
HORTENSIO 
 Petruchio, since we are stepped thus far in,

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ACT 1. SC. 2

85 I will continue that I broached 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,
90 Is that she is intolerable 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.
PETRUCHIO 
 Hortensio, peace. Thou know’st not gold’s effect.
95 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.
HORTENSIO 
 Her father is Baptista Minola,
 An affable and courteous gentleman.
100 Her name is Katherina Minola,
 Renowned in Padua for her scolding tongue.
PETRUCHIO 
 I know her father, though I know not her,
 And he knew my deceasèd father well.
 I will not sleep, Hortensio, till I see her,
105 And therefore let me be thus bold with you
 To give you over at this first encounter—
 Unless you will accompany me thither.
GRUMIO, to Hortensio I pray you, sir, let him go while
 the humor lasts. O’ my word, an she knew him as
110 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
115 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.

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ACT 1. SC. 2

HORTENSIO 
 Tarry, Petruchio. I must go with thee,
 For in Baptista’s keep my treasure is.
120 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,
125 For those defects I have before rehearsed,
 That ever Katherina will be wooed.
 Therefore this order hath Baptista ta’en,
 That none shall have access unto Bianca
 Till Katherine the curst have got a husband.
GRUMIO 130“Katherine the curst,”
 A title for a maid, of all titles the worst.
HORTENSIO 
 Now shall my friend Petruchio do me grace
 And offer me disguised in sober robes
 To old Baptista as a schoolmaster
135 Well seen in music, to instruct Bianca,
 That so I may, by this device at least,
 Have leave and leisure to make love to her
 And unsuspected court her by herself.
GRUMIO Here’s no knavery! See, to beguile the old
140 folks, how the young folks lay their heads together!

Enter Gremio and Lucentio, disguised as Cambio, a
schoolmaster.


 Master, master, look about you. Who goes there, ha?
HORTENSIO 
 Peace, Grumio, it is the rival of my love.
 Petruchio, stand by awhile.
Petruchio, Hortensio, and Grumio stand aside.
GRUMIO, aside 
 A proper stripling, and an amorous.

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ACT 1. SC. 2

GREMIO, to Lucentio 
145 O, very well, I have perused 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
150 Signior Baptista’s liberality,
 I’ll mend it with a largess. Take your paper too.
 And let me have them very well perfumed,
 For she is sweeter than perfume itself
 To whom they go to. What will you read to her?
LUCENTIO, as Cambio 
155 Whate’er I read to her, I’ll plead for you
 As for my patron, stand you so assured,
 As firmly as yourself were still in place,
 Yea, and perhaps with more successful words
 Than you—unless you were a scholar, sir.
GREMIO 
160 O this learning, what a thing it is!
GRUMIO, aside 
 O this woodcock, what an ass it is!
PETRUCHIO, aside Peace, sirrah.
HORTENSIO, aside 
 Grumio, mum.Coming forward.
 God save you, Signior Gremio.
GREMIO 
165 And you are well met, Signior Hortensio.
 Trow you whither I am going? To Baptista Minola.
 I promised to enquire carefully
 About a schoolmaster for the fair Bianca,
 And by good fortune I have lighted well
170 On this young man, for learning and behavior
 Fit for her turn, well read in poetry
 And other books—good ones, I warrant you.
HORTENSIO 
 ’Tis well. And I have met a gentleman

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ACT 1. SC. 2

 Hath promised me to help me to another,
175 A fine musician to instruct our mistress.
 So shall I no whit be behind in duty
 To fair Bianca, so beloved of me.
GREMIO 
 Beloved of me, and that my deeds shall prove.
GRUMIO, aside And that his bags shall prove.
HORTENSIO 
180 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.
Presenting Petruchio.
 Here is a gentleman whom by chance I met,
 Upon agreement from us to his liking,
185 Will undertake to woo curst Katherine,
 Yea, and to marry her, if her dowry please.
GREMIO So said, so done, is well.
 Hortensio, have you told him all her faults?
PETRUCHIO 
 I know she is an irksome, brawling scold.
190 If that be all, masters, I hear no harm.
GREMIO 
 No? Sayst me so, friend? What countryman?
PETRUCHIO 
 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.
GREMIO 
195 Oh, sir, such a life with such a wife were strange.
 But if you have a stomach, to ’t, i’ God’s name!
 You shall have me assisting you in all.
 But will you woo this wildcat?
PETRUCHIO  Will I live?
GRUMIO 
200 Will he woo her? Ay, or I’ll hang her.

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ACT 1. SC. 2

PETRUCHIO 
 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, puffed up with winds,
205 Rage like an angry boar chafèd with sweat?
 Have I not heard great ordnance in the field
 And heaven’s artillery thunder in the skies?
 Have I not in a pitchèd battle heard
 Loud ’larums, neighing steeds, and trumpets clang?
210 And do you tell me of a woman’s tongue,
 That gives not half so great a blow to hear
 As will a chestnut in a farmer’s fire?
 Tush, tush, fear boys with bugs!
GRUMIO  For he fears none.
GREMIO 215Hortensio, hark.
 This gentleman is happily arrived,
 My mind presumes, for his own good and yours.
HORTENSIO 
 I promised we would be contributors
 And bear his charge of wooing whatsoe’er.
GREMIO 
220 And so we will, provided that he win her.
GRUMIO 
 I would I were as sure of a good dinner.

Enter Tranio, disguised as Lucentio, and Biondello.

TRANIO, as Lucentio 
 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?
BIONDELLO 225He that has the two fair daughters—is ’t
 he you mean?
TRANIO, as Lucentio Even he, Biondello.
GREMIO 
 Hark you, sir, you mean not her to—

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ACT 1. SC. 2

TRANIO, as Lucentio 
 Perhaps him and her, sir. What have you to do?
PETRUCHIO 
230 Not her that chides, sir, at any hand, I pray.
TRANIO, as Lucentio 
 I love no chiders, sir. Biondello, let’s away.
LUCENTIO, aside 
 Well begun, Tranio.
HORTENSIO  Sir, a word ere you go.
 Are you a suitor to the maid you talk of, yea or no?
TRANIO, as Lucentio 
235 An if I be, sir, is it any offense?
GREMIO 
 No, if without more words you will get you hence.
TRANIO, as Lucentio 
 Why sir, I pray, are not the streets as free
 For me, as for you?
GREMIO  But so is not she.
TRANIO, as Lucentio 
240 For what reason, I beseech you?
GREMIO 
 For this reason, if you’ll know:
 That she’s the choice love of Signior Gremio.
HORTENSIO 
 That she’s the chosen of Signior Hortensio.
TRANIO, as Lucentio 
 Softly, my masters. If you be gentlemen,
245 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.
250 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.

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ACT 1. SC. 2

GREMIO 
 What, this gentleman will out-talk us all!
LUCENTIO, as Cambio 
255 Sir, give him head; I know he’ll prove a jade.
PETRUCHIO 
 Hortensio, to what end are all these words?
HORTENSIO, to Tranio 
 Sir, let me be so bold as ask you,
 Did you yet ever see Baptista’s daughter?
TRANIO, as Lucentio 
 No, sir, but hear I do that he hath two,
260 The one as famous for a scolding tongue
 As is the other for beauteous modesty.
PETRUCHIO 
 Sir, sir, the first’s for me; let her go by.
GREMIO 
 Yea, leave that labor to great Hercules,
 And let it be more than Alcides’ twelve.
PETRUCHIO, to Tranio 
265 Sir, understand you this of me, in sooth:
 The youngest daughter, whom you hearken for,
 Her father keeps from all access of suitors
 And will not promise her to any man
 Until the elder sister first be wed.
270 The younger then is free, and not before.
TRANIO, as Lucentio 
 If it be so, sir, that you are the man
 Must stead us all, and me amongst the rest,
 And if you break the ice and do this feat,
 Achieve the elder, set the younger free
275 For our access, whose hap shall be to have her
 Will not so graceless be to be ingrate.
HORTENSIO 
 Sir, you say well, and well you do conceive.
 And since you do profess to be a suitor,
 You must, as we do, gratify this gentleman,
280 To whom we all rest generally beholding.

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ACT 1. SC. 2

TRANIO, as Lucentio 
 Sir, I shall not be slack; in sign whereof,
 Please you we may contrive this afternoon
 And quaff carouses to our mistress’ health,
 And do as adversaries do in law,
285 Strive mightily, but eat and drink as friends.
GRUMIO and BIONDELLO 
 O excellent motion! Fellows, let’s be gone.
HORTENSIO 
 The motion’s good indeed, and be it so.—
 Petruchio, I shall be your ben venuto.
They exit.