THE TAMING OF THE SHREW
A monologue from the
play by William
MORE MONOLOGUES BY WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE
- KATE: Fie, fie, unknit that threat'ning 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 moved 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 labor both by sea and land,
- To watch the night in storms, the day in cold,
- Whilst thou li'st 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 ashamed that women are so simple
- To offer war where they should kneel for peace,
- Or seek for rule, supremacy, and sway,
- Whey they are bound to serve, love, and obey.
- Why are our bodies soft and weak and smooth,
- Unapt to toil 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.