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Enter HORTENSIO

HOR. How now! what's the matter? My old friend 20 Grumio! and my good friend Petruchio! How do you all at Verona ?

PET. Signior Hortensio, come you to part the fray? "Con tutto il core ben trovato," may I say.

HOR. "Alla nostra casa ben venuto, molto honorato signor mio Petrucio."

Rise, Grumio, rise: we will compound this quarrel.

GRU. Nay, 't is 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, 30 sir: well, was it fit for a servant to use his master so, being perhaps, for aught I see, two-and-thirty, a pip out? Whom would to God I had well knock'd at first, Then had not Grumio come by the worst.

PET. A senseless villain! Good Hortensio,

I bade the rascal knock upon your gate

And could not get him for my heart to do it.

GRU. 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 40 come you now with, "knocking at the gate"?

PET. Sirrah, be gone, or talk not, I advise you.
HOR. Petruchio, patience; I am Grumio's pledge:

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32 two-and-thirty, a pip out] Pip is a spot on playing cards. The allusion is to an old card game, called "bone ace," or thirty;" see IV, ii, 57, infra. Cf. Massinger's Fatal Dowry, II, ii: "[You] are thirty-two years old, which is a pip out."

Why, this 's a heavy chance 'twixt him and you,
Your ancient, trusty, pleasant servant Grumio.
And tell me now, sweet friend, what happy gale
Blows you to Padua here from old Verona ?

PET. Such wind as scatters young men through the world,

To seek their fortunes farther than at home,
Where small experience grows. But in a few,
Signior Hortensio, thus it stands with me:
Antonio, my father, is deceased;

And I have thrust myself into this maze,

Haply 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.

HOR. Petruchio, shall I then come roundly to thee,
And wish thee to a shrewd ill-favour'd wife?
Thou 'ldst 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 burden of my wooing dance,

Be she as foul as was Florentius' love,

57 come roundly] speak bluntly or outspokenly. Cf. infra, III, ii, 210, "take it on you so roundly," and IV, iv, 102, "I'll roundly go about her."

67 Florentius' love] Gower in his Confessio Amantis tells the old story of the knight Florent or Florentius, who swore to marry a

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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
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; 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 are 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 intolerable curst

And shrewd and froward, so beyond all measure,

hideous hag in consideration of her giving him the answer to a riddle, which he was pledged either to solve or to die. The "Wife of Bath" tells the same story, though the knight is given no name, in Chaucer's Canterbury Tales.

68 As old as Sibyl] Cf. "As old as Sibylla," Merch. of Ven., I, ii, 119,

note.

79 two and fifty horses] The "fifty diseases of a horse" were proverbial. Cf. Yorkshire Tragedy: "The fifty diseases stop thee." The numeral in "two and fifty horses" strikes a characteristic note of exaggeration.

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That, wére 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 't is 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,
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.

you

I will not sleep, Hortensio, till I see her ;
And therefore let me be thus bold with
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; an he begin once, he 'll rail in his ropetricks. I'll tell you what, sir, an she stand him but a little, he will throw a figure in her face and so disfigure 102-103 let me . . . encounter] let me be so frank as to tell you that I shall abandon you at our first meeting. 109-110 rope-tricks] Cf. Rom. and Jul., II, iv, 141-142: "What saucy merchant was this that was so full of his ropery," i. e. "roguery." But the use of "figure (of speech)" in the next sentence suggests that Grumio is mispronouncing " rhetoric" when he employs the word "rope-tricks."

111 figure] a figure of speech. Perhaps there is a quibbling reference

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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 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 rehearsed,
That ever Katharina will be woo'd;
Therefore this order hath Baptista ta'en,
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 disguised in sober robes

To old Baptista as a schoolmaster

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.

GRU. Here's no knavery! See, to beguile the old folks, how the young folks lay their heads together!

to the common phrase about "setting the ten commandments in your face," which meant using the ten fingers or the fists for purposes of assault.

113 a cat] The cat was commonly reputed to be purblind or blear-eyed by day, though well able to see in the dark.

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