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Tra. Of Pisa, sir; son to Vincentio.
Bap. A mighty man of Pisa; by report I know him well: 3 you are very welcome, sir. Take you [to HoR.] the lute, and you [to Luc.] the set
of books, You shall go see your pupils presently. Holla, within!
Enter a Servant. Sirrah, lead These gentlemen to my daughters; and tell them both, These are their tutors; bid them use them well.
[Exit Serv. with Hor. Luc. and Bion. We will go walk a little in the orchard, And then to dinner: You are passing welcome, And so I pray you all to think yourselves.
Pet. Signior Baptista, my business asketh haste, And every day I cannot come to woo.*
2 Lucentio is your name?] How should Baptista know this? Perhaps a line is lost, or perhaps our author was negligent. Mr. Theobald supposes they converse privately, and that thus the name is learned; but then the action must stand still; for there is no speech interposed between that of Tranio and this of Baptista. Another editor imagines that Lucentio's name was written on the packet of books. Malone.
3 I know him well.] It appears in a subsequent part of this play, that Baptista was not personally acquainted with Vincentio. The pedant indeed talks of Vincentio and Baptista having lodged together twenty years before at an inn in Genoa; but this appears to have been a fiction for the nonce; for when the pretended Vincentio is introduced, Baptista expresses no surprise at his not being the same man with whom he had formerly been acquainted; and, when the real Vincentio appears, he supposes him an impostor. The words therefore, I know him well, must mean, “ I know well who he is.” Baptista uses the same words before, speaking of Petruchio's father: “I know him well; you are wel. come for his sake"-where they must have the same meaning; viz. I know who he was; for Petruchio's father is supposed to have died before the commencement of this play, Some of the modern editors point the passage before us thus :
A mighty man of Pisa; by report
I know him weli.. but it is not so pointed in he old copy, and the regulation seems unnecessary, the very same words having been before used with equal license concerning the father of Petruchio.
Again, in Timon of Athens: “We know him for no less, though we are but strangers to him." Malone.
You knew my father well; and in him, mé,
Bah. After my death, the one half of my lands:
Pet. And, for that dowry, I 'll assure her of
Bar. Ay, when the special thing is well obtain'd,
Pet. Why, that is nothing; for I tell you, father,
Bap. Well may'st thou woo, and happy be thy speed! But be thou arm’d for some unhappy words.
Pet. Ay, to the proof; as mountains are for winds, That shake not, though they blow perpetually.
Re-enter HORTENSIO, with his head broken. Bap. How now, my friend? why dost thou look so
pale? * And every day I cannot come to woo.] This is the burthen of part of an old ballad, entitled The Ingenious Braggadocio:
“ And I cannot come every day to wooe.” It appears also from a quotation in Puttenham's Arte of English Poesie, 1589, that it was a line in his Interlude, entitled The Woer:
“ Iche pray you good mother tell our young dame
I'll assure her of
Perhaps we should read-on her widowhood. In the old copies on and of are not unfrequently confounded, through the printers' inattention. Steevens.
Hor. For fear, I promise you, if I look pale.
Hor. I think, she 'll sooner prove a soldier;
Bap. Why, then thou canst not break her to the lute?
Hor. Why, no; for she hath broke the lute to me.
Pet. Now, by the world, it is a lusty wench;
Bap. Well, go with me, and be not so discomfited:
[Exeunt BAP. GRE. TRA. and Hor.
- her frets,]
fret is that stop of a musical instrument which causes or regulates the vibration of the string. Johnson.
7 And—twangling Jack;] Of this contemptuous appellation I know not the precise meaning. Something like it, however, occurs in Magnificence, an ancient folio interlude, by Skelton, printed by Rasteil:
ye wene I were some hafter, “Or ellys some jangelynge jacke of the vale.” Steevens. To twangle is a provincial expression, and signifies to flourish capriciously on an instrument, as performers often do after having tuned it, previous to their beginning a regular composition.
Henley. Twangling Jack is, mean, paltry lutanist Malone.
I do not see with Mr. Malone, that twangling Jack means “paltry lutanist,” though it may “paltry musician." Douce.
she had - ] In the old copy these words are accidentally transposed. Corrected by Mr. Rowe. Malone.
And woo her with some spirit when she comes.
9 As morning roses newly wash'd with dew:] Milton has honoured this image by adopting it in his Allegro:
-“ And fresh-blown roses wash'd in dew." Steevens. 1 Good-morrow, Kate; &c.] Thus, in the original play: “ Feran. Twenty good-morrows to my lovely Kate. “ Kate. You jeast I am sure; is she yours already? “ Feran. I tel thee Kate, I know thou lov'st me wel. “ Kate. The divel you do; who told you so?
“ Feran. My mind, sweet Kate, doth say I am the man, “Must wed, and bed, and marrie bonnie Kate.
“ Kate. Was ever seene so grosse an asse as this? “ Feran. I, to stand so long and never get a kisse. “ Kate. Hands off, I say, and get you from this place; “Or I will set my ten commandments in your face.
“ Feran. I prithy do, Kate; they say thou art a shrew, “And I like thee better, for I would have thee so.
“ Kate. Let go my hand, for feare it reach your eare.
Alfon. Come hither, Kate, and let me give thy hand,
“ Kate. Why, father, what do you mean to do with me, * To give me thuis unto this brainsicke man, *That in his mood cares not to murder me?:
[She turnes aside and speaks. “But yet I will consent and marry him,
Kath. Well have you heard, but something hard of
hearing;2 They call me-Katharine, that do talk of me.
Pet. You lie, in faith; for you are callid plain Kate,
Why, what's a moveable?
Thou hast hit it: come, sit on me.
“(For I methinkes have liv'd too long a maide)
“ Alfon. Give me thy hand: Ferando loves thee well,
“ Feran. Why so, did I not tel thee I should be the man? “ Father, I leave my lovely Kate with you. “ Provide yourselves against our marriage day, “ For I must hie me to my country-house “In haste, to see provision may be made “To entertaine my Kate when she doth come,” &c. Steevens.
2 Well have you heard, but something hard of hearing;] A poor quibble was here intended. It appears from many old English books that heard was pronounced in our author's time, as if it were written hard. Malonę. 3 A joint-stool.] This is a proverbial expression:
“Cry you mercy, I took you for a join'd stool.” See Ray's Collection. It is likewise repeated as a proverb in Mather Bombie, a comedy, by Lyly, 1594, and by the Fool in King Lear. Steedens.