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with ne'er a tooth in her head, though she have as many
diseases as two and fifty horses 8 : why, nothing comes amiss, so money comes withal.
Hor. Petruchio, since we have stepp'd thus far in,
Hor. Her father is Baptista Minola,
• If low, an agate very vilely cut.' And in Henry IV. Part II.:-'I was never mann'd with an agate till now.'
It may be remarked that aglet was also another name for a spangle, as may be seen in Florio's Ital. Dict. in the word tremola; who also distinguishes the tags of points as long aglets, in the word Puntale. This will explain a passage in Beaumont and Fletcher's Two Noble Kinsmen, Act iii. Sc. 4:
• The little stars and all, that look like aglets,' i. e, spangles. And another in Jeronimo, 1605:
• And all those stars that gaze upon her face
Are aglets on her sleeve-pins and her train.' Several passages in Spenser have been misinterpreted for want of a proper acquaintance with the meaning of aglets. 8 The
fifty diseases of a horse seems to be proverbial, of which, probably, the text is only an exaggeration.
9 Cross, froward, petulant.
Pet. I know her father, though I know not her; And he knew my deceased father well: I will not sleep, Hortensio, till I see her ; And therefore let me be thus bold with you, To give you over at this first encounter, Unless you will accompany me thither.
Gru. I pray you, sir, let him go while the humour lasts.
O’ my word, an she knew him as well as I do, she would think scolding would do little good upon him: She may, perhaps, call him half a score knaves or so: why, that's nothing; an he begin once, he'll rail in his rope tricks 10. I'll tell you what, sir,-an she stand 11 him but a little, he will throw a figure in her face, and so disfigure her with it, that she shall have no more eyes to see withal than a cat 12: You know him not, sir.
Hor. Tarry, Petruchio, I must go with thee;
love: Supposing it a thing impossible, (For those defects I have before rehears’d), That ever Katharina will be woo'd; Therefore this order 14 hath Baptista ta'en ;
10 i. e. roguish tricks. Ropery is used by Shakspeare in Romeo and Juliet for roguery. A rope-ripe is one for whom the gallows groans, according to Cotgrave. So in Bullein's Dialogue, ed. 1578:- Oh Lorde, it is sportation to hear the clowting beetles to rowle in their rope-ripe terms.' 11 Withstand.
12 To endeavour to explain this would certainly be lost labour. Mr. Boswell justly remarks 'that nothing is more common in ludicrous or playful discourse than to use a comparison where no resemblance is intended.'
13 Keep here means care, keeping, custody.
Honest Iago hath ta'en order for it.'
That none shall have access unto Bianca,
Gru. Katharine the curst!
Hor. Now shall my friend Petruchio do me grace;
15 in asick, to instruct Bianca : That so
may by this device, at least, Have leave and leisure to make love to her, And, unsuspected, court her by herself. Enter GREMIO; with him LUCENTIO disguised,
with books under his arm. Gru. Here's knavery! See, to beguile the old folks, how the young folks lay their heads together! Master, master, look about
Hor. Peace, Grumio; 'tis the rival of my love: Petruchio, stand by a while. Gru. A proper stripling, and an amorous !
[They retire. Gre. 0, very well; I have perus’d the note. Hark you, sir; I'll have them very fairly bound: All books of love, see that at any hand 16; And see you read no other lectures to her: You understand me;—Over and beside Signior Baptista's liberality, I'll mend it with a largess 17 :—Take your papers too, And let me have them very well perfum’d; For she is sweeter than perfume itself, To whom they go. What will you read to her?
15 To be well seen in any art was to be well skilled in it. So Spenser's Faerie Queene, b. iv. c. 2:• Well seene in every science that mote be.'
Luc. Whate'er I read to her, I'll plead for you,
you were a scholar, sir.
Whither I am going ?—To Baptista Minola.
Hor. 'Tis well: and I have met a gentleman,
Hor. Gremio, 'tis now no time to vent our love:
Gre. So said, so done, is well:
Pet. I know, she is an irksome brawling scold; If that be all, masters, I hear no harm.
Gre. No! say’st me so, friend? What countryman?
Pet. Born in Verona, old Antonio's son:
Will I live?
Pet. Why came I hither, but to that intent?
tell me of a woman's tongue,
For he fears none. [Aside.
Hor. I promis'd, we would be contributors,
Gre. And so we will; provided that he win her.
[Aside. 18 Fright boys with bug-bears. So in Cymbeline:
The mortal bugs o' the field.'