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The Taming of the Shrew: Act Induction, Scene 2

The Taming of the Shrew
Act Induction, Scene 2

A bedchamber in the Lord’s house.

  1. Enter aloft the drunkard Sly with Attendants, some with
  2. apparel, basin and ewer, and other appurtenances, and Lord.

Christopher Sly

1
  1. For God’s sake, a pot of small ale.

First Servingman

2
  1. Will’t please your lordship drink a cup of sack?

Second Servingman

3
  1. Will’t please your honor taste of these conserves?

Third Servingman

4
  1. What raiment will your honor wear today?

Christopher Sly

5 - 11
  1. I am Christophero Sly, call not me honor nor lordship. I
  2. ne’er drank sack in my life; and if you give me any
  3. conserves, give me conserves of beef. Ne’er ask me what
  4. raiment I’ll wear, for I have no more doublets than backs,
  5. no more stockings than legs, nor no more shoes than
  6. feetnay, sometime more feet than shoes, or such shoes as my
  7. toes look through the overleather.

Lord

12 - 15
  1. Heaven cease this idle humor in your honor!
  2. O that a mighty man of such descent,
  3. Of such possessions, and so high esteem,
  4. Should be infused with so foul a spirit!

Christopher Sly

16 - 23
  1. What, would you make me mad? Am not I Christopher Sly, old
  2. Sly’s son of Burton-heath, by birth a pedlar, by education a
  3. card-maker, by transmutation a bear-herd, and now by present
  4. profession a tinker? Ask Marian Hacket, the fat ale-wife of
  5. Wincot, if she know me not. If she say I am not fourteen
  6. pence on the score for sheer ale, score me up for the
  7. lying’st knave in Christendom. What! I am not bestraught.
  8. Here’s

Third Servingman

24
  1. O, this it is that makes your lady mourn!

Second Servingman

25
  1. O, this is it that makes your servants droop!

Lord

26 - 44
  1. Hence comes it that your kindred shuns your house,
  2. As beaten hence by your strange lunacy.
  3. O noble lord, bethink thee of thy birth,
  4. Call home thy ancient thoughts from banishment,
  5. And banish hence these abject lowly dreams.
  6. Look how thy servants do attend on thee,
  7. Each in his office ready at thy beck.
  8. Wilt thou have music? Hark, Apollo plays,
  9. Music.
  10. And twenty caged nightingales do sing.
  11. Or wilt thou sleep? We’ll have thee to a couch,
  12. Softer and sweeter than the lustful bed
  13. On purpose trimm’d up for Semiramis.
  14. Say thou wilt walk; we will bestrow the ground.
  15. Or wilt thou ride? Thy horses shall be trapp’d,
  16. Their harness studded all with gold and pearl.
  17. Dost thou love hawking? Thou hast hawks will soar
  18. Above the morning lark. Or wilt thou hunt?
  19. Thy hounds shall make the welkin answer them
  20. And fetch shrill echoes from the hollow earth.

First Servingman

45 - 46
  1. Say thou wilt course, thy greyhounds are as swift
  2. As breathed stags; ay, fleeter than the roe.

Second Servingman

47 - 51
  1. Dost thou love pictures? We will fetch thee straight
  2. Adonis painted by a running brook,
  3. And Cytherea all in sedges hid,
  4. Which seem to move and wanton with her breath,
  5. Even as the waving sedges play with wind.

Lord

52 - 54
  1. We’ll show thee Io as she was a maid,
  2. And how she was beguiled and surpris’d,
  3. As lively painted as the deed was done.

Third Servingman

55 - 58
  1. Or Daphne roaming through a thorny wood,
  2. Scratching her legs that one shall swear she bleeds,
  3. And at that sight shall sad Apollo weep,
  4. So workmanly the blood and tears are drawn.

Lord

59 - 61
  1. Thou art a lord, and nothing but a lord.
  2. Thou hast a lady far more beautiful
  3. Than any woman in this waning age.

First Servingman

62 - 65
  1. And till the tears that she hath shed for thee
  2. Like envious floods o’errun her lovely face,
  3. She was the fairest creature in the world,
  4. And yet she is inferior to none.

Christopher Sly

66 - 73
  1. Am I a lord, and have I such a lady?
  2. Or do I dream? Or have I dream’d till now?
  3. I do not sleep: I see, I hear, I speak;
  4. I smell sweet savors, and I feel soft things.
  5. Upon my life, I am a lord indeed,
  6. And not a tinker, nor Christopher Sly.
  7. Well, bring our lady hither to our sight,
  8. And once again a pot o’ th’ smallest ale.

Second Servingman

74 - 78
  1. Will’t please your mightiness to wash your hands?
  2. O how we joy to see your wit restor’d!
  3. O that once more you knew but what you are!
  4. These fifteen years you have been in a dream,
  5. Or when you wak’d, so wak’d as if you slept.

Christopher Sly

79 - 80
  1. These fifteen years! By my fay, a goodly nap,
  2. But did I never speak of all that time?

First Servingman

81 - 87
  1. O yes, my lord, but very idle words,
  2. For though you lay here in this goodly chamber,
  3. Yet would you say ye were beaten out of door,
  4. And rail upon the hostess of the house,
  5. And say you would present her at the leet,
  6. Because she brought stone jugs and no seal’d quarts.
  7. Sometimes you would call out for Cicely Hacket.

Christopher Sly

88
  1. Ay, the woman’s maid of the house.

Third Servingman

89 - 94
  1. Why, sir, you know no house nor no such maid,
  2. Nor no such men as you have reckon’d up,
  3. As Stephen Sly, and old John Naps of Greece,
  4. And Peter Turph, and Henry Pimpernell,
  5. And twenty more such names and men as these,
  6. Which never were, nor no man ever saw.

Christopher Sly

95
  1. Now Lord be thanked for my good amends!

All Servants and Lord

96
  1. Amen.
  1. Enter the Page as a lady, with Attendants.

Christopher Sly

97
  1. I thank thee, thou shalt not lose by it.

Page

98
  1. How fares my noble lord?

Christopher Sly

99 - 100
  1. Marry, I fare well, for here is cheer enough.
  2. Where is my wife?

Page

101
  1. Here, noble lord, what is thy will with her?

Christopher Sly

102 - 103
  1. Are you my wife and will not call me husband?
  2. My men should call me lord”; I am your goodman.

Page

104 - 105
  1. My husband and my lord, my lord and husband,
  2. I am your wife in all obedience.

Christopher Sly

106
  1. I know it well. What must I call her?

Lord

107
  1. Madam.

Christopher Sly

108
  1. Al’ce madam, or Joan madam?

Lord

109
  1. Madam, and nothing else, so lords call ladies.

Christopher Sly

110 - 111
  1. Madam wife, they say that I have dream’d,
  2. And slept above some fifteen year or more.

Page

112 - 113
  1. Ay, and the time seems thirty unto me,
  2. Being all this time abandon’d from your bed.

Christopher Sly

114 - 115
  1. ’Tis much. Servants, leave me and her alone.
  2. Madam, undress you, and come now to bed.

Page

116 - 122
  1. Thrice-noble lord, let me entreat of you
  2. To pardon me yet for a night or two;
  3. Or if not so, until the sun be set.
  4. For your physicians have expressly charg’d,
  5. In peril to incur your former malady,
  6. That I should yet absent me from your bed.
  7. I hope this reason stands for my excuse.

Christopher Sly

123 - 125
  1. Ay, it stands so that I may hardly tarry so long. But I
  2. would be loath to fall into my dreams again. I will
  3. therefore tarry in despite of the flesh and the blood.
  1. Enter a Messenger.

Messenger

126 - 133
  1. Your honor’s players, hearing your amendment,
  2. Are come to play a pleasant comedy,
  3. For so your doctors hold it very meet,
  4. Seeing too much sadness hath congeal’d your blood,
  5. And melancholy is the nurse of frenzy.
  6. Therefore they thought it good you hear a play,
  7. And frame your mind to mirth and merriment,
  8. Which bars a thousand harms and lengthens life.
  1. Exit.

Christopher Sly

134 - 135
  1. Marry, I will, let them play it. Is not a comonty a
  2. Christmas gambold, or a tumbling-trick?

Page

136
  1. No, my good lord, it is more pleasing stuff.

Christopher Sly

137
  1. What, household stuff?

Page

138
  1. It is a kind of history.

Christopher Sly

139 - 140
  1. Well, we’ll see’t. Come, madam wife, sit by my side, and let
  2. the world slip, we shall ne’er be younger.
  1. They all sit. Flourish.
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