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Characters in the Induction.
Lord, before whom the Play is fuppos'd to be play'd.
Page, Players, Huntsmen, and other Servants attending on
Baptifta, Father to Catharina and Bianca; very rich.
Petruchio, a Gentleman of Verona, a Suitor to Catharina.
Gremio, } Pretenders to Bianca.
Tranio, } Servants to Lucentio.
Grumio, Servant to Petruchio.
Pedant, an old fellow fet up to perfonate Vincentio.
Catharina, the Shrew.
Bianca, ber Sifter.
Taylor, Haberdashers; with Servants attending on
SCENE, fometimes in Padua; and fometimes in Petruchio's Houfe in the Country.
TAMING of the SHREW.
Before an Alehoufe on a Heath.
Enter Hoftefs and Sly.
"'LL pheefe you', in faith.
Hoft. A pair of stocks, you rogue! Sly. Y'are a baggage; the Slies are no Look in the Chronicles, we came in with Richard Conqueror; therefore, paucus pallabris ; let the world Aide: Seffa.
Hoft. You will not pay for the glaffes you have burst? Sly. No, not a denier: go by, Jeronimo thy cold bed, and warm thee3. Hoft. I know my remedy; I must go fetch the Thirdborough+.
Sly. Third, or fourth, or fifth borough, I'll anfwer him by law; I'll not budge an inch, boy; let him come, and kindly. [Falls afleep.
3 Go by S. Jeronimy, go to thy cold Bed, and warm thee.] All the Editions have coined a Saint here, for Sly to fwear by. But the Poet had no fuch Intentions. The Paffage has particular Humour in it, and must have been very pleafing at that time of day. But I must clear up a Piece of Stage hiftory, to make it underftood. There is a fuftian old Play, call'd, Hieronymo; Or, The Spanish Tragedy: which, I find, was the common Butt of Rallery to all the Poets of ShakeSpeare's Time: and a Paffage, that appear'd very ridiculous in that Play, is here humoroufly alluded to. Hieronymo, thinking himself injur'd, applies to the King for Juftice; but the Courtiers, who did not defire his Wrongs fhould be fet in a true Light, attempt to hinder him from an Audience.
Hiero. Juftice, oh! juftice to
fee ft thou not,
the King is bufy? Hiero. Oh, is be fo? King. Who is He, that interrupts our Business? Hiero. Not I:
Hieronymo, beware; go by, go by. So Sly here, not caring to be dun'd by the Hoftefs, cries to her in Effect. "Don't be trouble
"fom, don't interrupt me, go, "by;" and, to fix the Satire in his Allufion, pleasantly calls her Jeronymo. THEOBALD.
- I must go fetch the Headborough.
Sly. Third, or fourth, or fifth Borough, &c.] This corrupt reading had pafs'd down through all the Copies, and none of the Editors pretended to guefs at the Poet's Conceit. What an infipid, unmeaning Reply does Sly make to his Hoftefs? How do third, or fourth, or fifth Borough relate to Headborough? The Author intended but a poor Witticism, and even That is loft. The Hoftefs would fay, that she'll fetch a Conftable: and this Officer the calls by his other Name, a Thirdborough: and upon this Term Sly founds the Conundrum in his Anfwer to her. Who does not perceive, at a single glance, fome Conceit started by this certain Correction? There is an Attempt at Wit, tolerable enough for a Tinker, and one drunk too. Third-borough is a Saxon-Term fufficiently explain'd by the Glo faries: and in our Statute books, no farther back than the 28th Year of Henry VIIIth, we find it ufed to fignify a Conflable. THEOBALD.
Wind borns. Enter a Lord from bunting, with a Train.
Lord. Huntsman, I charge thee, tender well my
Brach, Merriman, the poor cur is imboft';
Hun. Why, Belman is as good as he, my Lord;
Lord. Thou art a fool; if Eccho were as fleet,
Hun. I will, my Lord.
Lord. What's here? one dead, or drunk? fee, doth he breathe?
2 Hun. He breathes, my Lord. Were he not warm'd with ale,
5 Brach, Merriman,] Sir T. Hanmer reads, Leech Merriman, that is, apply fome remedies to Merriman, the poor cur has his joints favelled. Perhaps we might read, bathe Merriman, which is
This were a bed but cold, to fleep fo foundly.
Lord. O monftrous beast! how like a fwine he lies!
I believe the common practice of huntfmen, but the prefent reading may stand
tender well my bounds, Brach. Merriman ---the poor cur is imboft.
And brave attendants near him, when he wakes;
1 Hun. Believe me, Lord, I think he cannot chuse, 2 Hun. It would feem ftrange unto him, when he wak'd.
Lord. Even as a flatt'ring dream, or worthless fancy,
And fay, will't please your Lordship cool your hands?
It will be paftime paffing excellent,
If it be hufbanded with modesty o.
1 Hun. My Lord, I warrant you, we'll play our
As he fhall think, by our true diligence,
He is no less than what we fay he is.
Lord. Take him up gently, and to bed with him;
modity.] By modefty is meant moderation, without fuffering Our merriment to break into any excefs.