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Must stead us all, and me among the rest;
HOR. Sir, you say well, and well you do conceive;
And since you do profess to be a suitor,
TRA. Sir, I shall not be slack: in sign whereof, Please ye we may contrive this afternoon,2 And quaff carouses to our mistress' health ; And do as adversaries do in law,3— Strive mightily, but eat and drink as friends.
this feat,] The old copy reads-this seek. The emendation was made by Mr. Rowe. STEEVENS.
Please ye we may contrive this afternoon,] Mr. Theobald asks what they were to contrive? and then says, a foolish corruption possesses the place, and so alters it to convive; in which he is followed, as he pretty constantly is, when wrong, by the Oxford editor. But the common reading is right, and the critic was only ignorant of the meaning of it. Contrive does not signify here to project but to spend, and wear out. As in this passage of Spenser:
"Three ages such as mortal men contrive."
Fairy Queen, B. XI. ch. ix. Warburton. The word is used in the same sense of spending or wearing out, in Painter's Palace of Pleasure. JOHNSON.
So, in Damon and Pithias, 1571:
"In travelling countries, we three have contrived
Contrive, I suppose, is from contero. So, in the Hecyra of Terence: "Totum hunc contrivi diem." STEEVENS.
—as adversaries do in law,] By adversaries in law, I believe, our author means not suitors, but barristers, who, how
GRU. BION. O excellent motion! Fellows, let's begone.*
HOR. The motion's good indeed, and be it so;Petruchio, I shall be your ben venuto.
ever warm in their opposition to each other in the courts of law, live in greater harmony and friendship in private, than perhaps those of any other of the liberal professions. Their clients seldom "eat and drink with their adversaries as friends." MALONE.
Fellows, let's begone.] Fellows means fellow-servants. Grumio and Biondello address each other, and also the disguised Lucentio. Malone.
ACT II. SCENE I.
The same. A Room in Baptista's House.
Enter KATHARINA and BIANCA.
BIAN. Good sister, wrong me not, nor wrong yourself,5
To make a bondmaid and a slave of me;
KATH. Of all thy suitors, here I charge thee,"
KATH. Minion, thou liest; Is't not Hortensio ? BIAN. If you affect him, sister, here I swear, I'll plead for you myself, but you shall have him.
nor wrong yourself,] Do not act in a manner unbecoming a woman and a sister. So, in The Merry Wives of Windsor: "Master Ford, this wrongs you." MALONE.
6 — but for these other gawds,] The old copy reads these other goods. STEEVENS.
This is so trifling and unexpressive a word, that I am satisfied our author wrote gawds, (i. e. toys, trifling ornaments ;) a terin that he frequently uses and seems fond of. THEOBALD.
7-I charge thee,] Thee, which was accidentally omitted in the old copy, was supplied by the editor of the second folio.
KATH. O then, belike, you fancy riches more; You will have Gremio to keep you fair.
BIAN. Is it for him you do envy me so?
KATH. If that be jest, then all the rest was so. [Strikes her.
BAP. Why, how now, dame! whence insolence?
Bianca, stand aside;-poor girl! she weeps:-
When did she cross thee with a bitter word?
KATH. Her silence flouts me, and I'll be reveng'd. [Flies after BIANCA. BAP. What, in my sight?-Bianca, get thee in. [Exit BIANCA.
KATH. Will you not suffer me?1 Nay, now I see, She is your treasure, she must have a husband; I must dance bare-foot on her wedding-day,
to keep you fair.] I wish to read-to keep you fine. But either word may serve. JOHNSON.
hilding-] The word hilding or hinderling, is a low wretch; it is applied to Katharine for the coarseness of her behaviour. JOHNSON.
1 Will you not suffer me?] The old copy reads-What, will, &c. The compositor probably caught the former word from the preceding line. Corrected by Mr. Pope. MALONE.
And, for your love to her, lead apes in hell.
[Exit KATHARINA. BAP. Was ever gentleman thus griev'd as I? But who comes here?
Enter GREMIO, with LUCENTIO in the habit of a mean man; PETRUCHIO, with HORTENSIO as a Musician; and TRANIO, with BIONDELLO bearing a lute and books.
GRE. Good-morrow, neighbour Baptista.
BAP. Good-morrow, neighbour Gremio: God save you, gentlemen!
PET. And you, good sir! Pray, have you not a daughter Call'd Katharina, fair, and virtuous?
BAP. I have a daughter, sir, call'd Katharina. GRE. You are too blunt, go to it orderly.
PET. You wrong me, signior Gremio; give me leave.
I am a gentleman of Verona, sir,
And, for your love to her, lead apes in hell.] "To lead apes" was in our author's time, as at present, one of the employments of a bear-herd, who often carries about one of those animals along with his bear: but I know not how this phrase came to be applied to old maids. We meet with it again in Much Ado about Nothing: "Therefore (says Beatrice,) I will even take six-pence in earnest of the bear-herd, and lead his apes to hell." MALONE.
That women who refused to bear children, should, after death, be condemned to the care of apes in leading-strings, might have been considered as an act of posthumous retribution.