Imagens das páginas
PDF
ePub

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 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;
Brought up, as best becomes a gentlewoman:
Her only fault (and that is faults enough,)
Is,—that she is intolerably 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.
Pet. Hortensio, peace; thou know'st not gold's

effect:-
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.

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:-
I will not sleep, Hortensio, till I see her;
And therefore let me be thus bold with you,
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 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 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 rehears'd,)
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, disguis’d in sober robes,
To old Baptista as a school-master
Well seen in musick, 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.

Enter Gremio; with him Lucentio disguised, with

books under his arm. Gru. Here's no knavery! See; to beguile the old folks, liow the young folks lay their heads to. my love:

gether! Master, master, look about you: Who goes there? ha!

Hor. Peace, Grumio; 'tis the rival of
Petruchio, stand by a-while.
Gru. A proper stripling, and an amorous !

[They retire.
Gre. O, very well; I have perus’d 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
Signior Baptista's liberality,
I'll mend it with a largess:—Take your papers too,
And let me have them very well perfum`d;
For she is sweeter than perfume itself,
To whom they go. What will you read to her?

Luc. Whate'er I read to her, I'll plead for you, As for my patron, (stand you so assurd,) As firmly as yourself were still in place: Yea, and (perhaps) with more successful words Than you, unless

you were a scholar, sir. Gre. O this learning! what a thing it is! Gru. O this woodcock! what an ass it is! Pet. Peace, sirrah. 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 promis'd to enquire 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, I warrant you.

Hor. 'Tis well: and I have met a gentleman,
Hath promis'd me to help me to another,
A fine musician to instruct our mistress;
So shall I no whit be behind in duty
To fair Bianca, so belov’d of me.
Gre. Belov'd of me,—and that my deeds shall

prove. Gru. And that his bags shall prove. [Aside.

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,
Will undertake to woo curst Katharine;
Yea, and to marry her, if her dowry please.

Gre. So said, so done, is well:
Hortensio, have you told him all her faults?

Pet. I know, she is an irksome brawling scold;
If that be all, masters, I hear no harm.
Gre. No, say'st me so, friend? What country-

man?
Pet. 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.
Gre. O, sir, such a life, with such a wife, were

strange:
But, if you have a stomach, to't o'God's name;
You shall have me assisting you in all.
But will you woo this wild cat?

Pet.

Will I live? Gru. Will he woo her? ay, or I'll hang her.

[Aside.
Pet. 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, puff'd up with winds,
Rage like an angry boar, chafed with sweat?
Have I not heard great ordnance in the field,
And heaven's artillery thunder in the skies?
Have I not in a pitched battle heard
Loud 'larums, neighing steeds, and trumpets'

clang?
And do you tell me of a woman's tongue;
That gives not half so great a blow to the ear,
As will a chesnut in a farmer's fire?
Tush! tush! fear boys with bugs.
Gru.

For he fears none.

[Aside. Gre. Hortensio, hark! This gentleman is happily arriv’d, My mind presumes, for his own good, and

yours. Hor. I promis’d, we would be contributors, 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.

[Aside.

Enter Tranio, bravely apparelld; and Biondello.
Tra. Gentlemen, God save you! If I may be

bold,

« AnteriorContinuar »