Skip over navigation

The Taming of the Shrew

Original Text

Modern Text






35
HORTENSIO
Petruchio, patience. I am Grumio’s pledge.
Why, this' 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?
HORTENSIO
Easy, Petruchio. I’ll vouch for Grumio. It’s terrible—you two fighting! Faithful, funny old Grumio! You guys go way back! Now, my dear friend, what lucky wind blows you in from Verona?





40



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 deceased,
And I have thrust myself into this maze,
Happily 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.
PETRUCHIO
The wind that scatters young men throughout the world, encouraging them to seek their fortunes some place other than home, where there’s little to be found in the way of experience. But to be brief, Hortensio, the situation is that my father, Antonio, is dead, and I have set off into this crazy world to see if I can marry well and make a good life for myself. I have money in my purse and property at home, so I’m off to see the world.

45




50
HORTENSIO
Petruchio, shall I then come roundly to thee
And wish thee to a shrewd, ill-favored 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 thou'rt too much my friend,
And I’ll not wish thee to her.
HORTENSIO
Petruchio, shall I be frank? I know where you can find a shrewish and unpleasant wife. I doubt you’d thank me in the end, but she’s rich, all right, very rich. But you’re too good a friend for me to wish her on you.





55




60

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.
PETRUCHIO
Hortensio, good friends like us can get by on a few words. If you can find a woman rich enough for me—because money is all I look for in a wife—let her be as ugly as

Flotentius’s

Flotentius was a knight in a medieval poem by Join Gower; he was forced to marry an extremely ugly woman. The Cumaean Sibyl was a mythical prophetess who lived forever. Xanthippe was Socrates notoriously bad-tempered wife.

Flotentius’s
love, as old as the Sibyl, and as bad-tempered as Xanthippe. It wouldn’t matter one way or the other. I’ve come here in search of a rich wife. If I find a rich wife in Padua, I’ll have found a good wife in Padua.

More Help

Previous Next
s