The Taming of the Shrew - Act 5, scene 2
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Navigate this workThe Taming of the Shrew - Act 5, scene 2
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 about being married to a shrew. In retaliation Petruchio wagers with Lucentio and Hortensio that if they all summon their wives to them, his Katherine will be the most obedient in responding. When Bianca and the Widow refuse to come at all and Katherine promptly appears, Petruchio wins, and then he sends Katherine to bring the other wives to their husbands. When they return, Petruchio tells Katherine to instruct the other wives in their wifely duty. Katherine delivers a long speech in praise of women’s submission to their husbands. Petruchio kisses Katherine, and they go off to bed.
Enter Baptista, Vincentio, Gremio, the ⌜Merchant,⌝
Lucentio, and Bianca; ⌜Hortensio⌝ and ⌜the⌝ Widow,
⌜Petruchio and Katherine;⌝ Tranio, Biondello, ⌜and⌝
Grumio, ⌜with⌝ Servingmen bringing in a banquet.
2526 At last, though long, our jarring notes agree,
2528 To smile at ’scapes and perils overblown.
2529 My fair Bianca, bid my father welcome,
2530 5 While I with selfsame kindness welcome thine.
2531 Brother Petruchio, sister Katherina,
2532 And thou, Hortensio, with thy loving widow,
2533 Feast with the best, and welcome to my house.
2534 My banquet is to close our stomachs up
2535 10 After our great good cheer. Pray you, sit down,
2536 For now we sit to chat as well as eat.⌜They sit.⌝
2537 Nothing but sit and sit, and eat and eat!
2538 Padua affords this kindness, son Petruchio.
2539 Padua affords nothing but what is kind.
2540 15 For both our sakes I would that word were true.
2541 Now, for my life, Hortensio fears his widow!
2542 Then never trust me if I be afeard.
2543 You are very sensible, and yet you miss my sense:
2544 I mean Hortensio is afeard of you.
2545 20 He that is giddy thinks the world turns round.
2546 Roundly replied.
KATHERINE 2547 Mistress, how mean you that?
WIDOW 2548 Thus I conceive by him.
2549 Conceives by me? How likes Hortensio that?
2550 25 My widow says, thus she conceives her tale.
2551 Very well mended. Kiss him for that, good widow.
2552 “He that is giddy thinks the world turns round”—
2553 I pray you tell me what you meant by that.
2554 Your husband being troubled with a shrew
2555 30 Measures my husband’s sorrow by his woe.
2556 And now you know my meaning.
2557 A very mean meaning.
WIDOW 2558 Right, I mean you.
2559 And I am mean indeed, respecting you.
PETRUCHIO 2560 35To her, Kate!
HORTENSIO 2561 To her, widow!
2562 A hundred marks, my Kate does put her down.
HORTENSIO 2563 That’s my office.
2564 Spoke like an officer! Ha’ to thee, lad.
⌜He⌝ drinks to Hortensio.
2565 40 How likes Gremio these quick-witted folks?
2566 Believe me, sir, they butt together well.
2567 Head and butt! An hasty-witted body
2568 Would say your head and butt were head and horn.
2569 Ay, mistress bride, hath that awakened you?
2570 45 Ay, but not frighted me. Therefore I’ll sleep again.
2571 Nay, that you shall not. Since you have begun,
2572 Have at you for a ⌜bitter⌝ jest or two.
2573 Am I your bird? I mean to shift my bush,
2574 And then pursue me as you draw your bow.—
2575 50 You are welcome all.Bianca, ⌜Katherine, and the Widow⌝ exit.
2576 She hath prevented me. Here, Signior Tranio,
2577 This bird you aimed at, though you hit her not.—
2578 Therefore a health to all that shot and missed.
2579 O, sir, Lucentio slipped me like his greyhound,
2580 55 Which runs himself and catches for his master.
2581 A good swift simile, but something currish.
2582 ’Tis well, sir, that you hunted for yourself.
2583 ’Tis thought your deer does hold you at a bay.
2584 O, O, Petruchio! Tranio hits you now.
2585 60 I thank thee for that gird, good Tranio.
2586 Confess, confess! Hath he not hit you here?
2587 He has a little galled me, I confess.
2588 And as the jest did glance away from me,
2589 ’Tis ten to one it maimed you two outright.
2590 65 Now, in good sadness, son Petruchio,
2591 I think thou hast the veriest shrew of all.
2592 Well, I say no. And therefore, ⌜for⌝ assurance,
2593 Let’s each one send unto his wife,
2594 And he whose wife is most obedient
2595 70 To come at first when he doth send for her
2596 Shall win the wager which we will propose.
2597 Content, what’s the wager?
LUCENTIO 2598 Twenty crowns.
PETRUCHIO 2599 Twenty crowns?
2600 75 I’ll venture so much of my hawk or hound,
2601 But twenty times so much upon my wife.
2602 A hundred, then.
HORTENSIO 2603 Content.
PETRUCHIO 2604 A match! ’Tis done.
HORTENSIO 2605 80Who shall begin?
LUCENTIO 2606 That will I.
2607 Go, Biondello, bid your mistress come to me.
BIONDELLO 2608 I go.He exits.
2609 Son, I’ll be your half Bianca comes.
2610 85 I’ll have no halves. I’ll bear it all myself.
2611 How now, what news?
BIONDELLO 2612 Sir, my mistress sends you
2614 That she is busy, and she cannot come.
2615 90 How? “She’s busy, and she cannot come”?
2616 Is that an answer?
GREMIO 2617 Ay, and a kind one, too.
2618 Pray God, sir, your wife send you not a worse.
PETRUCHIO 2619 I hope better.
2620 95 Sirrah Biondello, go and entreat my wife
2621 To come to me forthwith.Biondello exits.
PETRUCHIO 2622 O ho, entreat her!
2623 Nay, then, she must needs come.
2625 100 Do what you can, yours will not be entreated.
2626 Now, where’s my wife?
2627 She says you have some goodly jest in hand.
2628 She will not come. She bids you come to her.
PETRUCHIO 2629 Worse and worse. She will not come!
2630 105 O vile, intolerable, not to be endured!—
2631 Sirrah Grumio, go to your mistress,
2632 Say I command her come to me.⌜Grumio⌝ exits.
2633 I know her answer.
PETRUCHIO 2634 What?
HORTENSIO 2635 110 She will not.
2636 The fouler fortune mine, and there an end.
2637 Now by my holidam, here comes Katherina!
2638 What is your will, sir, that you send for me?
2639 Where is your sister, and Hortensio’s wife?
2640 115 They sit conferring by the parlor fire.
2641 Go fetch them hither. If they deny to come,
2642 Swinge me them soundly forth unto their husbands.
2643 Away, I say, and bring them hither straight.
2644 Here is a wonder, if you talk of a wonder.
2645 120 And so it is. I wonder what it bodes.
2646 Marry, peace it bodes, and love, and quiet life,
2647 An awful rule, and right supremacy,
2648 And, to be short, what not that’s sweet and happy.
2649 Now fair befall thee, good Petruchio!
2650 125 The wager thou hast won, and I will add
2651 Unto their losses twenty thousand crowns,
2652 Another dowry to another daughter,
2653 For she is changed as she had never been.
2654 Nay, I will win my wager better yet,
2655 130 And show more sign of her obedience,
2656 Her new-built virtue and obedience.
Enter Katherine, Bianca, and Widow.
2657 See where she comes, and brings your froward
2659 As prisoners to her womanly persuasion.—
2660 135 Katherine, that cap of yours becomes you not.
2661 Off with that bauble, throw it underfoot.
2662 Lord, let me never have a cause to sigh
2663 Till I be brought to such a silly pass.
2664 Fie, what a foolish duty call you this?
2665 140 I would your duty were as foolish too.
2666 The wisdom of your duty, fair Bianca,
2667 Hath cost me ⌜a⌝ hundred crowns since suppertime.
2668 The more fool you for laying on my duty.
2669 Katherine, I charge thee tell these headstrong
2670 145 women
2671 What duty they do owe their lords and husbands.
2672 Come, come, ⌜you’re⌝ mocking. We will have no
2674 Come on, I say, and first begin with her.
WIDOW 2675 150She shall not.
2676 I say she shall.—And first begin with her.
2677 Fie, fie! Unknit that threat’ning unkind brow,
2678 And dart not scornful glances from those eyes
2679 To wound thy lord, thy king, thy governor.
2680 155 It blots thy beauty as frosts do bite the meads,
2681 Confounds thy fame as whirlwinds shake fair buds,
2682 And in no sense is meet or amiable.
2683 A woman moved is like a fountain troubled,
2684 Muddy, ill-seeming, thick, bereft of beauty,
2685 160 And while it is so, none so dry or thirsty
2686 Will deign to sip or touch one drop of it.
2687 Thy husband is thy lord, thy life, thy keeper,
2688 Thy head, thy sovereign, one that cares for thee,
2689 And for thy maintenance commits his body
2690 165 To painful labor both by sea and land,
2691 To watch the night in storms, the day in cold,
2692 Whilst thou liest warm at home, secure and safe,
2693 And craves no other tribute at thy hands
2694 But love, fair looks, and true obedience—
2695 170 Too little payment for so great a debt.
2696 Such duty as the subject owes the prince,
2697 Even such a woman oweth to her husband;
2698 And when she is froward, peevish, sullen, sour,
2699 And not obedient to his honest will,
2700 175 What is she but a foul contending rebel
2701 And graceless traitor to her loving lord?
2702 I am ashamed that women are so simple
2703 To offer war where they should kneel for peace,
2705 180 When they are bound to serve, love, and obey.
2706 Why are our bodies soft and weak and smooth,
2707 Unapt to toil and trouble in the world,
2708 But that our soft conditions and our hearts
2709 Should well agree with our external parts?
2710 185 Come, come, you froward and unable worms!
2711 My mind hath been as big as one of yours,
2712 My heart as great, my reason haply more,
2713 To bandy word for word and frown for frown;
2714 But now I see our lances are but straws,
2715 190 Our strength as weak, our weakness past compare,
2716 That seeming to be most which we indeed least are.
2717 Then vail your stomachs, for it is no boot,
2718 And place your hands below your husband’s foot;
2719 In token of which duty, if he please,
2720 195 My hand is ready, may it do him ease.
2721 Why, there’s a wench! Come on, and kiss me, Kate.
2722 Well, go thy ways, old lad, for thou shalt ha ’t.
2723 ’Tis a good hearing when children are toward.
2724 But a harsh hearing when women are froward.
PETRUCHIO 2725 200Come, Kate, we’ll to bed.
2726 We three are married, but you two are sped.
2727 ⌜To Lucentio.⌝ ’Twas I won the wager, though you
2728 hit the white,
2729 And being a winner, God give you good night.
Petruchio ⌜and Katherine⌝ exit.
2730 205 Now, go thy ways, thou hast tamed a curst shrow.
2731 ’Tis a wonder, by your leave, she will be tamed so.