The Taming of the Shrew By William Shakespeare Act II: Scene 1

ACT II.

SCENE I. Padua. A room in BAPTISTA'S house.

[Enter KATHERINA and BIANCA.]

BIANCA.
Good sister, wrong me not, nor wrong yourself,
To make a bondmaid and a slave of me;
That I disdain; but for these other gawds,
Unbind my hands, I'll pull them off myself,
Yea, all my raiment, to my petticoat;
Or what you will command me will I do,
So well I know my duty to my elders.

KATHERINA.
Of all thy suitors here I charge thee tell
Whom thou lov'st best: see thou dissemble not.

BIANCA.
Believe me, sister, of all the men alive
I never yet beheld that special face
Which I could fancy more than any other.

KATHERINA.
Minion, thou liest. Is't not Hortensio?

BIANCA.
If you affect him, sister, here I swear
I'll plead for you myself but you shall have him.

KATHERINA.
O! then, belike, you fancy riches more:
You will have Gremio to keep you fair.

BIANCA.
Is it for him you do envy me so?
Nay, then you jest; and now I well perceive
You have but jested with me all this while:
I prithee, sister Kate, untie my hands.

KATHERINA.
If that be jest, then an the rest was so.

[Strikes her.]

[Enter BAPTISTA.]

BAPTISTA.
Why, how now, dame! Whence grows this insolence?
Bianca, stand aside. Poor girl! she weeps.
Go ply thy needle; meddle not with her.
For shame, thou hilding of a devilish spirit,
Why dost thou wrong her that did ne'er wrong thee?
When did she cross thee with a bitter word?

KATHERINA.
Her silence flouts me, and I'll be reveng'd.

[Flies after BIANCA.]

BAPTISTA.
What! in my sight? Bianca, get thee in.

[Exit BIANCA.]

KATHERINA.
What! will you not suffer me? Nay, now I see
She is your treasure, she must have a husband;
I must dance bare-foot on her wedding-day,
And, for your love to her, lead apes in hell.
Talk not to me: I will go sit and weep
Till I can find occasion of revenge.

[Exit.]

BAPTISTA. Was ever gentleman thus griev'd as I?
But who comes here?

[Enter GREMIO, with LUCENTIO in the habit of a mean man;
PETRUCHIO, with HORTENSIO as a musician; and TRANIO, with
BIONDELLO bearing a lute and books.]

GREMIO.
Good morrow, neighbour Baptista.

BAPTISTA.
Good morrow, neighbour Gremio. God save you, gentlemen!

PETRUCHIO.
And you, good sir! Pray, have you not a daughter
Call'd Katherina, fair and virtuous?

BAPTISTA.
I have a daughter, sir, call'd Katherina.

GREMIO.
You are too blunt: go to it orderly.

PETRUCHIO.
You wrong me, Signior Gremio: give me leave.
I am a gentleman of Verona, sir,
That, hearing of her beauty and her wit,
Her affability and bashful modesty,
Her wondrous qualities and mild behaviour,
Am bold to show myself a forward guest
Within your house, to make mine eye the witness
Of that report which I so oft have heard.
And, for an entrance to my entertainment,
I do present you with a man of mine,

[Presenting HORTENSIO.]

Cunning in music and the mathematics,
To instruct her fully in those sciences,
Whereof I know she is not ignorant.
Accept of him, or else you do me wrong:
His name is Licio, born in Mantua.

BAPTISTA.
You're welcome, sir, and he for your good sake;
But for my daughter Katherine, this I know,
She is not for your turn, the more my grief.

PETRUCHIO.
I see you do not mean to part with her;
Or else you like not of my company.

BAPTISTA.
Mistake me not; I speak but as I find.
Whence are you, sir? What may I call your name?

PETRUCHIO.
Petruchio is my name, Antonio's son;
A man well known throughout all Italy.

BAPTISTA.
I know him well: you are welcome for his sake.

GREMIO.
Saving your tale, Petruchio, I pray,
Let us, that are poor petitioners, speak too.
Backare! you are marvellous forward.

PETRUCHIO.
O, pardon me, Signior Gremio; I would fain be doing.

GREMIO.
I doubt it not, sir; but you will curse your wooing.
Neighbour, this is a gift very grateful, I am sure of it. To
express the like kindness, myself, that have been more kindly
beholding to you than any, freely give unto you this young
scholar,

[Presenting LUCENTIO.]

that has been long studying at Rheims; as cunning in Greek,
Latin, and other languages, as the other in music and
mathematics. His name is Cambio; pray accept his service.

BAPTISTA.
A thousand thanks, Signior Gremio; welcome, good Cambio. —
[To TRANIO.]
But, gentle sir, methinks you walk like a stranger: may
I be so bold to know the cause of your coming?

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