The Taming of the Shrew By William Shakespeare Act I: Scene 2

SCENE II. Padua. Before HORTENSIO'S house.

[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 beloved and approved friend,
Hortensio; and I trow this is his house.
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, 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,
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 GRUMIO by the ears.]

GRUMIO.
Help, masters, help! my master is mad.

PETRUCHIO.
Now, knock when I bid you, sirrah villain!

[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.
Signior Hortensio, come you to part the fray?
Con tutto il cuore ben trovato, may I say.

HORTENSIO.
Alla nostra casa ben venuto; molto honorato signor mio Petruchio.
Rise, Grumio, rise: we will compound this quarrel.

GRUMIO.
Nay, '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 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.

PETRUCHIO.
A senseless villain! Good Hortensio,
I bade the rascal knock upon your gate,
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.
Sirrah, be gone, or talk not, I advise you.

HORTENSIO.
Petruchio, patience; I am Grumio's pledge;
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?

PETRUCHIO.
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 deceas'd,
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.

HORTENSIO.
Petruchio, shall I then come roundly to thee
And wish thee to a shrewd ill-favour'd 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 th'art too much my friend,
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,
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
As are the swelling Adriatic seas:
I come to wive it wealthily in Padua;
If wealthily, then happily in Padua.

GRUMIO.
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 has as many diseases as two-and-fifty horses: why, nothing
comes amiss, so money comes withal.

HORTENSIO.
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,
That, were my state far worser than it is,
I would not wed her for a mine of gold.

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