The Taming of the Shrew: Act 5, Scene 2
Enter BAPTISTA, VINCENTIO, GREMIO,
the PEDANT, LUCENTIO, and BIANCA;
[PETRUCHIO, KATHARINA, HORTENSIO,]
TRANIO, BIONDELLO, GRUMIO, and
WIDOW: the Servingmen with Tranio bringing
stage direction. a banquet: i.e., the dessert trolley.
in a banquet.
1At last, though long, our jarring notes agree:
2And time it is, when raging war is done,
3. scapes: escapes; close calls with disaster. overblown: blown over.
3To smile at scapes and perils overblown.
4My fair Bianca, bid my father welcome,
5While I with self-same kindness welcome thine.
6Brother Petruchio, sister Katharina,
7And thou, Hortensio, with thy loving widow,
8Feast with the best, and welcome to my house:
9. close our stomachs up: 1) finish off the feast; 2) end our quarrels.
9My banquet is to close our stomachs up,
10After our great good cheer. Pray you, sit down;
11For now we sit to chat as well as eat.
12Nothing but sit and sit, and eat and eat!
13Padua affords this kindness, son Petruchio.
kind: natural and pleasant.
14Padua affords nothing but what is kind.
15For both our sakes, I would that word were true.
16. fears: The verb "to fear" was used to mean both "to be afraid" and "to make someone else afraid."
16Now, for my life, Hortensio fears his widow.
17. afeard: afraid. The widow asserts that she is not at all afraid of Hortensio.
17Then never trust me, if I be afeard.
18You are very sensible, and yet you miss my sense:
19I mean, Hortensio is afeard of you.
20. He ... round: This saying means that people project their own faults on others.
20He that is giddy thinks the world turns round.
21. Roundly: frankly; plainly.
21Mistress, how mean you that?
22. Thus I conceive by him: i.e., I got my idea by observing Petruchio. The Widow explains exactly what she means in lines 28-30.
22Thus I conceive by him.
23. Conceives by me!: Petruchio takes up conceives in the sense of is made pregnant.
23Conceives by me! How likes Hortensio that?
24. conceives her tale: devises (with possible pun on tale, tail).
24My widow says, thus she conceives her tale.
25Very well mended. Kiss him for that, good widow.
26"He that is giddy thinks the world turns round":
27I pray you, tell me what you meant by that.
28Your husband, being troubled with a shrew,
29. Measures: Judges.
29Measures my husband's sorrow by his woe:
30And now you know my meaning.
31. very mean: i.e., very contemptible.
31A very mean meaning.
31Right, I mean you.
32. I am mean indeed, respecting you: I am in the meanmoderate and even-temperedin comparison to you.
32And I am mean indeed, respecting you.
33To her, Kate!
34To her, widow!
35. mark: coin worth about ⅔ of a pound. put her down: overcome or defeat her.
35A hundred marks, my Kate does put her down.
36. That's my office: i.e. I'm her husband, so it's my job to have sex with her.
36That's my office.
37. ha': i.e., here's.
37Spoke like an officer; ha' to thee, lad!
Drinks to Hortensio.
38How likes Gremio these quick-witted folks?
39. butt together well: i.e., are entertaining and well-matched in their battles of wits.
39Believe me, sir, they butt together well.
40-41. head ... horn: I think "horn" must be an allusion to the horns of a cuckold, but I don't understand by what pass of wit Bianca gets from "butt" to "Head, and butt," and thence to "head and horn."
40Head, and butt! an hasty-witted body
41Would say your head and butt were head and horn.
42Ay, mistress bride, hath that awaken'd you?
43Ay, but not frighted me; therefore I'll sleep again.
44Nay, that you shall not: since you have begun,
45. Have at you: I shall come at you. bitter: shrewd, sharp.
45Have at you for a bitter jest or two!
46. your bird: i.e., the bird you are aiming your darts at. shift my bush: fly to another tree (so that he will have to follow her if he intends to keep her as his target).
46Am I your bird? I mean to shift my bush;
47And then pursue me as you draw your bow.
48You are welcome all.
Exit Bianca [with Katharina
49. prevented: forestalled.
49She hath prevented me. Here, Signior Tranio.
50. This bird you aim'd at: i.e., This Bianca, (bird) whom Tranio courted (aim'd at) in his disguise as Lucentio.
50This bird you aim'd at, though you hit her not;
51Therefore a health to all that shot and miss'd.
52. slipp'd: unleashed.
52O, sir, Lucentio slipp'd me like his greyhound,
53Which runs himself and catches for his master.
54. swift: (1) ready-witted; (2) having reference to swiftness. currish: (1) ignoble; (2) concerning dogs.
54A good swift simile, but something currish.
55'Tis well, sir, that you hunted for yourself:
56. does hold you at a bay: turn to make a stand against you; turns on you like a cornered animal and holds you at a distance (hunting term).
56'Tis thought your deer does hold you at a bay.
57O ho, Petruchio! Tranio hits you now.
58. gird: taunt; sharp, biting jest.
58I thank thee for that gird, good Tranio.
59Confess, confess, hath he not hit you here?
60. gall'd: wounded.
60A' has a little gall'd me, I confess;
61And, as the jest did glance away from me,
62'Tis ten to one it maim'd you two outright.
63. good sadness: all seriousness.
63Now, in good sadness, son Petruchio,
64I think thou hast the veriest shrew of all.
65. assurance: proof.
65Well, I say no: and therefore for assurance
66Let's each one send unto his wife;
67And he whose wife is most obedient
68To come at first when he doth send for her,
69Shall win the wager which we will propose.
70Content. What is the wager?
72. of my hawk: on my hawk.
72I'll venture so much of my hawk or hound,
73But twenty times so much upon my wife.
74A hundred then.
74. A match: agreed.
74A match! 'tis done.
75Who shall begin?
75That will I.
76Go, Biondello, bid your mistress come to me.
78. I'll be your half: I'll share the wager with you by paying half your bet.
78Son, I'll be your half, Bianca comes.
79I'll have no halves; I'll bear it all myself.
80How now! what news?
80Sir, my mistress sends you word
81That she is busy and she cannot come.
82How! she is busy and she cannot come!
83Is that an answer?
83Ay, and a kind one too:
84Pray God, sir, your wife send you not a worse.
85. hope: expect.
85I hope better.
86Sirrah Biondello, go and entreat my wife
87To come to me forthwith.
87O, ho! entreat her!
88Nay, then she must needs come.
88I am afraid, sir,
89Do what you can, yours will not be entreated.
90Now, where's my wife?
91She says you have some goodly jest in hand:
92She will not come: she bids you come to her.
93Worse and worse; she will not come! O vile,
94Intolerable, not to be endured!
95Sirrah Grumio, go to your mistress;
96Say, I command her to come to me.
97I know her answer.
97She will not.
98The fouler fortune mine, and there an end.
99. by my holidame: i.e., by my Holy Dame (the Virgin Mary). The phrase was a common one, with little or no Christian meaning.
99Now, by my holidame, here comes Katharina!
100What is your will, sir, that you send for me?
101Where is your sister, and Hortensio's wife?
102. conferring: i.e., chatting.
102They sit conferring by the parlor fire.
103Go fetch them hither: if they deny to come,
104. Swinge me: i.e., Thrash them at my behest.
104Swinge me them soundly forth unto their husbands:
105Away, I say, and bring them hither straight.
106Here is a wonder, if you talk of a wonder.
107And so it is: I wonder what it bodes.
108Marry, peace it bodes, and love and quiet life,
109. aweful rule: authority commanding respect or awe.
109And aweful rule and right supremacy;
110And, to be short, what not, that's sweet and happy?
111. fair: good fortune.
111Now, fair befall thee, good Petruchio!
112-113. I will add ...crowns: Baptista has just doubled Katharina's dowry; See Act 2, Scene 1, line 122.
112The wager thou hast won; and I will add
113Unto their losses twenty thousand crowns;
114Another dowry to another daughter,
115For she is changed, as she had never been.
116Nay, I will win my wager better yet
117And show more sign of her obedience,
118Her new-built virtue and obedience.
Enter KATE, BIANCA, and WIDOW.
119. froward wives: difficult wives.
119See where she comes and brings your froward wives
120As prisoners to her womanly persuasion.
121Katharina, that cap of yours becomes you not:
122Off with that bauble, throw it under-foot.
[Kate throws down her cap and treads on it.]
123Lord, let me never have a cause to sigh,
124. pass: state of affairs.
124Till I be brought to such a silly pass!
125. duty: obedience.
125Fie! what a foolish duty call you this?
126I would your duty were as foolish too:
127The wisdom of your duty, fair Bianca,
128Hath cost me an hundred crowns since supper-time.
129. laying: wagering, betting.
129The more fool you, for laying on my duty.
130Katharina, I charge thee, tell these headstrong women
131What duty they do owe their lords and husbands.
132Come, come, you're mocking: we will have no telling.
133Come on, I say; and first begin with her.
134She shall not.
135I say she shall: and first begin with her.
136Fie, fie! unknit that threatening unkind brow,
137And dart not scornful glances from those eyes,
138To wound thy lord, thy king, thy governor:
139. as frosts do bite the meads: as frosts disfigure the meadow. 140. Confounds thy fame: ruins your reputation. 141. meet: fitting; appropriate.
139It blots thy beauty as frosts do bite the meads,
140Confounds thy fame as whirlwinds shake fair buds,
141And in no sense is meet or amiable.
142. mov'd: angry.
142A woman mov'd is like a fountain troubled,
143. ill-seeming: ugly.
143Muddy, ill-seeming, thick, bereft of beauty;
144And while it is so, none so dry or thirsty
145Will deign to sip or touch one drop of it.
146Thy husband is thy lord, thy life, thy keeper,
147Thy head, thy sovereign; one that cares for thee,
148And for thy maintenance commits his body
149To painful labor both by sea and land,
150To watch the night in storms, the day in cold,
151Whilst thou liest warm at home, secure and safe;
152And craves no other tribute at thy hands
153But love, fair looks and true obedience;
154Too little payment for so great a debt.
155Such duty as the subject owes the prince
156Even such a woman oweth to her husband;
157. froward: difficult, wayward.
157And when she is froward, peevish, sullen, sour,
158And not obedient to his honest will,
159What is she but a foul contending rebel
160And graceless traitor to her loving lord?
161. simple: foolish.
161I am ashamed that women are so simple
162To offer war where they should kneel for peace;
163Or seek for rule, supremacy and sway,
164When they are bound to serve, love and obey.
165Why are our bodies soft and weak and smooth,
166. Unapt to: Unfit for.
166Unapt to toil and trouble in the world,
167. conditions: dispositions.
167But that our soft conditions and our hearts
168Should well agree with our external parts?
169. unable worms: i.e., poor weak creatures.
169Come, come, you froward and unable worms!
170. as big: as haughty, arrogant.
170My mind hath been as big as one of yours,
171My heart as great, my reason haply more,
172To bandy word for word and frown for frown;
173But now I see our lances are but straws,
174Our strength as weak, our weakness past compare,
175That seeming to be most which we indeed least are.
176. Then vail your stomachs, for it is no boot: Then lower your pride, for there is no help for it.
176Then vail your stomachs, for it is no boot,
177And place your hands below your husband's foot:
178In token of which duty, if he please,
179. do him ease: give him pleasure.
179My hand is ready; may it do him ease.
180Why, there's a wench! Come on, and kiss me, Kate.
go ... ha't: i.e., Good going, my good old buddy Petruchio, for you're going to have everything you want.
181Well, go thy ways, old lad; for thou shalt ha't.
182. 'Tis a good hearing when children are toward: i.e., one likes to hear when children are obedient.
182'Tis a good hearing when children are toward.
183. froward: difficult.
183But a harsh hearing when women are froward.
184Come, Kate, we'll to bed.
185. We three are married, but you two are sped: i.e., all we three men have taken wives, but you two are done for (sped) because you've lost the bet.
185We three are married, but you two are sped.
186. white: center of the target; playing on Bianca's name, which in Italian means "white."
186'Twas I won the wager, though you hit the white;
187And, being a winner, God give you good night!
Exit Petruchio [with Kate].
188Now, go thy ways; thou hast tam'd a curst shrow.
189'Tis a wonder, by your leave, she will be tam'd so.