The Taming of the Shrew: Act 4, Scene 4

           Enter TRANIO [as Lucentio], and the
           PEDANT dress'd like Vincentio.

  1   Sir, this is the house: please it you that I call?

2. Ay, what else? i.e., Yes, I know that part, but what's next? —The Pedant is rehearsing what he is to say in his role as Vincentio, Lucentio's father.  but: unless.
  2   Ay, what else? and but I be deceived
  3   Signior Baptista may remember me,
  4   Near twenty years ago, in Genoa,
5. the Pegasus: i.e., an inn so named, marked by a sign displaying the winged horse of classical myth.

7. 'longeth: belongs
  5   Where we were lodgers at the Pegasus.

  6   'Tis well; and hold your own, in any case,
  7   With such austerity as 'longeth to a father.

           Enter BIONDELLO.

8. your boy: i.e., your servant-boy.
  8   I warrant you. But, sir, here comes your boy;
9. 'Twere good he were school'd: i.e., it would be a good idea to make sure he knows how to play his part.
  9   'Twere good he were school'd.

10. Fear you not: have no fears about.
 10   Fear you not him. Sirrah Biondello,
11. throughly: thoroughly.
 11   Now do your duty throughly, I advise you:
12. Imagine 'twere the right Vincentio: i.e., imagine that this Pedant is the real Vincentio.
 12   Imagine 'twere the right Vincentio.

13. fear not me: i.e., have no fear that I will make a mistake.
 13   Tut, fear not me.

 14   But hast thou done thy errand to Baptista?

 15   I told him that your father was at Venice,
 16   And that you look'd for him this day in Padua.

17. tall: fine, clever. hold thee that to drink: take this to buy yourself a drink. —Tranio tips him. 18. set your countenance: look grave.
 17   Thou'rt a tall fellow: hold thee that to drink.
 18   Here comes Baptista: set your countenance, sir.

           Enter BAPTISTA and
           LUCENTIO [as Cambio].

 19   Signior Baptista, you are happily met.

           [To the Pedant.]

 20   Sir, this is the gentleman I told you of:
 21   I pray you stand good father to me now,
 22   Give me Bianca for my patrimony.

23. Soft: not so fast.
 23   Soft son!
 24   Sir, by your leave: having come to Padua
 25   To gather in some debts, my son Lucentio
 26   Made me acquainted with a weighty cause
 27   Of love between your daughter and himself:
 28   And, for the good report I hear of you
 29   And for the love he beareth to your daughter
30. to stay him: keep him waiting
 30   And she to him, to stay him not too long,
 31   I am content, in a good father's care,
 32   To have him match'd; and if you please to like
 33   No worse than I, upon some agreement
 34   Me shall you find ready and willing
 35   With one consent to have her so bestow'd;
36. curious: overly particular about every detail.
 36   For curious I cannot be with you,
 37   Signior Baptista, of whom I hear so well.

 38   Sir, pardon me in what I have to say:
 39   Your plainness and your shortness please me well.
 40   Right true it is, your son Lucentio here
 41   Doth love my daughter and she loveth him,
 42   Or both dissemble deeply their affections:
 43   And therefore, if you say no more than this,
 44   That like a father you will deal with him
45. pass: settle on. dower: dowry
 45   And pass my daughter a sufficient dower,
 46   The match is made, and all is done:
 47   Your son shall have my daughter with consent.

 48   I thank you, sir. Where then do you know best
49. affied: betrothed.
 49   We be affied and such assurance ta'en
50. As shall with either part's agreement stand?: As shall confirm the agreement of both parties.
 50   As shall with either part's agreement stand?

 51   Not in my house, Lucentio; for, you know,
52. Pitchers have ears: Proverbial for "someone may be eavesdropping." Pitcher handles are the "ears." 53. heark'ning still: always listening. 54. happily: haply, perchance.
 52   Pitchers have ears, and I have many servants:
 53   Besides, old Gremio is heark'ning still;
 54   And happily we might be interrupted.

55. an it like: if it please.
 55   Then at my lodging, an it like you:
56. lie: lodge.
 56   There doth my father lie; and there, this night,
57. pass: transact.
 57   We'll pass the business privately and well.
 58   Send for your daughter by your servant here:
59. scrivener: notary, one to draw up contracts. presently: immediately.
 59   My boy shall fetch the scrivener presently.
 60   The worst is this, that, at so slender warning,
61. like: likely. pittance: scanty meal.
 61   You are like to have a thin and slender pittance.

 62   It likes me well. Cambio, hie you home,
 63   And bid Bianca make her ready straight;
 64   And, if you will, tell what hath happened,
 65   Lucentio's father is arrived in Padua,
66. like: likely.
 66   And how she's like to be Lucentio's wife.

           [Exit Lucentio.]

 67   I pray the gods she may with all my heart!

 68   Dally not with the gods, but get thee gone.

           [Exit Biondello.]

           Enter PETER, [a servant, who whispers
           to Tranio].

 69   Signior Baptista, shall I lead the way?
70. mess: dish. cheer: welcome, entertainment.
 70   Welcome! one mess is like to be your cheer:
71. we will better it in Pisa: i.e., we'll have a better meal in Pisa. — Pretend Lucentio (Tranio) is assuming that when Lucentio and Bianca are married, Baptista will come to Pisa on a visit to them.
 71   Come, sir; we will better it in Pisa.

 72   I follow you.

           Exeunt [Tranio, Pedant, Baptista,
           and Peter].

           Enter LUCENTIO [as Cambio]
           and BIONDELLO.

 73   Cambio!

 74   What sayest thou, Biondello?

 75   You saw my master wink and laugh upon
 76   you?

 77   Biondello, what of that?

78. h'as: he has.
 78   Faith, nothing; but h'as left me here behind, to
79. moral: hidden meaning.
 79   expound the meaning or moral of his signs and
 80   tokens.

81. moralize: elucidate, interpret.
 81   I pray thee, moralize them.

82. safe: i.e., safely taken care of; i.e., deceived.
 82   Then thus. Baptista is safe, talking with the
 83   deceiving father of a deceitful son.

 84   And what of him?

 85   His daughter is to be brought by you to
 86   the supper.

 87   And then?

 88   The old priest of Saint Luke's church is at your
 89   command at all hours.

 90   And what of all this?

91. except: unless.
 91   I cannot tell; expect they are busied about a
92. counterfeit assurance: pretended betrothal agreement. Take you assurance of her: make yourself sure. 93. cum privilegio ad imprimendum solum: with exclusive rights to print. —This is a copyright formula in impressive Latin. Biondello's point is that any agreement made by pretend Vincentio (the Pedant) has no legal standing, and that therefore Lucentio needs to make Bianca his lawful wife as quickly as possible.
 92   counterfeit assurance: take you assurance of her,
 93   "cum privilegio ad imprimendum solum"; to the
 94   church; take the priest, clerk, and some sufficient
 95   honest witnesses: If this be not that you look for,
 96   I have no more to say, But bid Bianca farewell for
 97   ever and a day.

98. Hearest thou, Biondello? i.e., Biondello, could you wait a minute and listen to me? — Apparently Lucentio is not particularly bright; it seems to take him a little time to figure out what is going on.
 98   Hearest thou, Biondello?

 99   I cannot tarry: I knew a wench married in an
100   afternoon as she went to the garden for parsley to
101   stuff a rabbit; and so may you, sir: and so, adieu,
102   sir. My master hath appointed me to go to Saint
103-104. against you come: in anticipation of your arrival
103   Luke's, to bid the priest be ready to come against
104. appendix: addition, i.e., the bride (continuing the metaphor of printing).
104   you come with your appendix.


105   I may, and will, if she be so contented:
106   She will be pleased; then wherefore should I doubt?
107. Hap ... her: i.e., Whatever happens, I'll make a bold move to marry her. 108. go hard: be really bad luck.
107   Hap what hap may, I'll roundly go about her:
108   It shall go hard if Cambio go without her.