The Taming of the Shrew Study Guide

The Taming of the Shrew

The Taming of the Shrew by William Shakespeare

The Taming of the Shrew is a play about the courtship between nobleman Petruchio and shrill, stubborn Katherina. Petruchio, advised by his friends, subjects Katherina to many forms of psychological warfare until she begins to accept his courtship. Eventually the two become engaged and Katherina's personality is successfully moderated by Petruchio's tactics, accomplishing the eponymous taming of the shrew by making Katherina a fit candidate for marriage, raising children, and display in high society.

The Taming of the Shrew Quotes

The Taming of the Shrew is a comedy by William Shakespeare. It was one of his earlier plays, probably written in 1593 or 1594.


  • Look in the chronicles; we came in with Richard Conqueror.
    • Sly, scene I

  • Let the world slide.
    • Sly, scene I

  • I’ll not budge an inch.
    • Sly, scene I

  • Stephen Sly, and old John Naps of Greece,And Peter Turf, and Henry Pimpernell,

    And twenty more such names and men as these

    Which never were, nor no man ever saw.

    • Third Servant, scene II

Act I

  • No profit grows where is no pleasure ta’en;In brief, sir, study what you most affect.
    • Tranio, scene I

  • There’s small choice in rotten apples.
    • Hortensio, scene I

  • I burn, I pine, I perish.
    • Lucentio, scene I

  • Nothing comes amiss, so money comes withal.
    • Grumio, scene II

  • Why came I hither but to that intent?Think you a little din can daunt mine ears?

    Have I not in my time heard lions roar?

    Have I not heard the sea, puff'd up with winds,

    Rage like an angry boar chafed with sweat?

    Have I not heard great ordnance in the field,

    And heaven's artillery thunder in the skies?

    Have I not in a pitched battle heard

    Loud 'larums, neighing steeds, and trumpets' clang?

    And do you tell me of a woman's tongue,

    That gives not half so great a blow to hear

    As will a chestnut in a farmer's fire?

    Tush, tush! fear boys with bugs.!

    • Petruchio, scene II

  • Do as adversaries do in law,—Strive mightily, but eat and drink as friends.
    • Tranio, scene II

Act II

  • I'll attend her here,And woo her with some spirit when she comes.

    Say that she rail, why then I'll tell her plain

    She sings as sweetly as a nightingale.

    Say that she frown, I'll say she looks as clear

    As morning roses newly wash'd with dew.

    Say she be mute and will not speak a word,

    Then I'll commend her volubility,

    And say she uttereth piercing eloquence.

    If she do bid me pack, I'll give her thanks,

    As though she bid me stay by her a week.

    If she deny to wed, I'll crave the day

    When I shall ask the banns, and when be married.

    • Petruchio, scene I

  • You lie, in faith; for you are call'd plain Kate,And bonny Kate, and sometimes Kate the curst;

    But Kate, the prettiest Kate in Christendom,

    Kate of Kate Hall, my super-dainty Kate,

    For dainties are all cates: and therefore, Kate,

    Take this of me, Kate of my consolation;—

    Hearing thy mildness prais'd in every town,

    Thy virtues spoke of, and thy beauty sounded,

    (Yet not so deeply as to thee belongs,)—

    Myself am mov'd to woo thee for my wife.

    • Petruchio, scene I

  • 'Twas told me you were rough, and coy, and sullen,And now I find report a very liar;

    For thou art pleasant, gamesome, passing courteous,

    But slow in speech, yet sweet as spring-time flowers.

    Thou canst not frown, thou canst not look askance,

    Nor bite the lip, as angry wenches will;

    Nor hast thou pleasure to be cross in talk;

    But thou with mildness entertain'st thy wooers;

    With gentle conference, soft and affable.

    Why does the world report that Kate doth limp?

    O slanderous world! Kate, like the hazel-twig

    Is straight and slender, and as brown in hue

    As hazel-nuts, and sweeter than the kernels.

    O! let me see thee walk: thou dost not halt.

    • Petruchio, scene I


  • Old fashions please me best; I am not so niceTo change true rules for odd inventions.
    • Bianca, scene I

  • Who woo'd in haste, and means to wed at leisure.
    • Katharina, scene II

  • To me she's married, not unto my clothes.
    • Petruchio scene III

Act IV

  • Thereby hangs a tale.
    • Grumio, scene I

  • What, is the jay more precious than the lark,Because his feathers are more beautiful?
    • Petruchio, scene III

Act V

  • My cake is dough.
    • Gremio, scene I

  • Fie, fie! unknit that threatening unkind brow,And dart not scornful glances from those eyes

    To wound thy lord, thy king, thy governor:

    It blots thy beauty as frosts do bite the meads,

    Confounds thy fame as whirlwinds shake fair buds,

    And in no sense is meet or amiable.

    A woman mov'd is like a fountain troubled,

    Muddy, ill-seeming, thick, bereft of beauty;

    And while it is so, none so dry or thirsty

    Will deign to sip or touch one drop of it.

    Thy husband is thy lord, thy life, thy keeper,

    Thy head, thy sovereign; one that cares for thee,

    And for thy maintenance commits his body

    To painful labour both by sea and land,

    To watch the night in storms, the day in cold,

    Whilst thou liest warm at home, secure and safe;

    And craves no other tribute at thy hands

    But love, fair looks, and true obedience;

    Too little payment for so great a debt.

    Such duty as the subject owes the prince,

    Even such a woman oweth to her husband;

    And when she is froward, peevish, sullen, sour,

    And not obedient to his honest will,

    What is she but a foul contending rebel

    And graceless traitor to her loving lord?—

    I am asham'd that women are so simple

    To offer war where they should kneel for peace,

    Or seek for rule, supremacy, and sway,

    When they are bound to serve, love, and obey.

    Why are our bodies soft and weak and smooth,

    Unapt to toll and trouble in the world,

    But that our soft conditions and our hearts

    Should well agree with our external parts?

    Come, come, you froward and unable worms!

    My mind hath been as big as one of yours,

    My heart as great, my reason haply more,

    To bandy word for word and frown for frown;

    But now I see our lances are but straws,

    Our strength as weak, our weakness past compare,

    That seeming to be most which we indeed least are.

    Then vail your stomachs, for it is no boot,

    And place your hands below your husband's foot:

    In token of which duty, if he please,

    My hand is ready; may it do him ease.

    • Katharina, scene II

  • Come on and kiss me, Kate !
    • Petruchio scene II

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