Petruchio never actually properly proposes to Katherina. He doesn’t even ask her. He just tells her what he intends to do. He says to her, “I will marry you” and he tells her how he plans to make her into the perfect wife. He tells her he was “born to tame you, Kate and bring you from a wild Kate to a Kate conformable as other household Kates. ” When he tells her this he also points out her behaviour. Throughout their first meeting Petruchio does a lot of talking but Katherina does not protest much.
When Petruchio tells Baptista that Katherina has agreed to marry him, she only gives one line of protest and then, when Petruchio says that she isn’t really that bad and that she doesn’t argue a lot really, she says nothing. Petruchio says that when they were alone Katherina hung onto his neck and kissed him she does not say anything of how he is lying. He told her father of how in love they are. This could mean that she thinks that she has met her match and when he says, “We will be married a’ Sunday’ she says nothing meaning that she accepts.
When it comes to Katherina and Petruchio’s wedding, Katherina gets ready but there is no sign of Petruchio. Katherina starts complaining and she describes Petruchio as “a frantic fool” who is “hiding his bitter jests in blunt behaviour,” however, when describing Petruchio she is also describing herself. We know that she is upset because she exits weeping. She could be upset that he didn’t turn up or she could be upset that she is being humiliated. Petruchio does everything he can to be hostile and repulsive. He firstly arrives late and when he does arrive, he arrives in the worst condition.
He comes wearing an old jerkin and with a rusty, old sword. He comes riding a dirty, elderly, diseased horse with a mothy saddle and stirrups of “no kindred. ” He brings Grumio, his lackey, who also looks a mess. Petruchio does this to annoy Katherina and because he is trying to embarrass her just as she has most likely done to others. He is also trying to show her that it is not nice to be shrewish and that people do not think well of it. The play does not stage the wedding itself but we hear an account of it from Gremio. Gremio tells us that Petruchio swore very loudly after he took Katherina to be his wife and later.
Petruchio swearing startled the priest and caused him to drop the book and when he bent down to pick it up Petruchio hit him. Later on, during the wedding, Petruchio threw wine and food at the sexton. His excuse was that his beard “grew thin and hungerly,” meaning that he was ill-fed. This was a very rude comment to make, especially at his wedding and in front of all those people. He also kissed Katherina so loudly that “all the church did echo. ” However, we must not take this to offence because we know that Petruchio is only acting to show Katherina how it is not nice to be shrewish.
Once the wedding was over and when they returned to the church, Petruchio immediately announced that he had to leave instantaneously. Many people ask him to stay but he says no to all, even when Katherina asks him. He deliberately says this to embarrass her. When Katherina asks him the second time he just ignores her and then we see the old, shrewish Katherina, who refuses to leave with him. She says, “Gentlemen, forward to the bridal dinner,” and Petruchio agrees with her. He says, “They shall go forward, Kate, at thy command,” however, he carries on saying that, “My bonny Kate, she must with me,” forcing her to go with him.
He tells everyone that she belongs to him and that they are thieves, even though they did not say or do anything. Everything Petruchio does at the wedding, he does to prove a point. He is not like that really, he is just acting. He is doing it for Katherina’s well being, to show her how she is and why it is bad. When Bianca is asked what she thinks of her sister, Bianca replies, “That being mad herself, she’s madly mated. ” Since Petruchio and Katherina have met we can already see a change in Katherina. Before, if her father tried getting her to marry someone she would have complained but she showed no sign of protesting against the marriage.
This is the first sign of her changing in to a tame, domestic Kate. On Petruchio and Katherina’s way back, Petruchio took the longest way back. We then get told, by Grumio, of what happened on their journey. We get told that Katherina’s horse fell on top of her and how she was covered in mud and then, Petruchio, instead of helping her up, left her under the horse and went to beat up Grumio for letting her horse stumble. This would’ve been what Katherina had done if she was in that situation but “she waded through the dirt to pluck him off. ” This is the second sign of her changing.
It is showing that she is considering other people’s feeling and is beginning to see that shrewish behaviour is not right. When Katherina helped Grumio, Petruchio swore as this is what she would have done before. When Petruchio and Katherina return home, to his country house, Petruchio acts shrewish just as she would have done. The first thing he does, when he comes home, is that he complains. He criticizes his servants about how there was no-one there to help him when he came home and how he had to manage all by himself. Petruchio then demands food and, then, instead of saying thank you, he continues to complain.
He curses his servants; he is coarse, rough, loud, noisy and violent. When his servants do the tiniest thing wrong he strikes them and when he strikes a servant for the second time Katherina speaks. She says, “Patience, I pray you. ‘Twas a fault unwilling. ” This shows compassion towards the servants and this compassion was not present until she met Petruchio. This shows her changing from a wild Kate. After Katherina speaks Petruchio complains some more and then they both sit down for dinner. When he sees the food he calls it burnt and then throws the food and dishes at the servants.
Katherina, again, defends the servants by saying, “The meat was well, if you were so contented. ” This shows that his plan is working and that she is becoming less shrewish. Petruchio argues that burnt food endangers anger and says that they are both hot tempered; pointing out that she is like how he is acting. If this is how Petruchio were normally, I doubt the servants would have stayed. However, since they know that this is only him acting they do not mind. Peter, one of his servants says that “He kills her in her own humour. ” This means that he is defeating her at her own game.
This also shows that he is winning and that slowly his plan is working. His plan is working because she is becoming lost for words and because she doesn’t know who to go along with. Petruchio soliloquy reveals his game. He says, “My falcon now is sharp and passing empty,” he uses this metaphor, comparing Katherina to a falcon, which is a trained animal. In this soliloquy, he clearly outlines his plan. His plan is that he is not going to let her eat or sleep. He is not doing this to be mean to her, he is doing it for her benefit. He says that “He that knows better how to tame a shrew. ”
In Act 4, Scene 2 it becomes clear that everyone is aware of Petruchio’s plan. Tranio calls Petruchio a master who can “Tame a shrew and charm her clattering tongue. ” Meanwhile, at Petruchio’s house, Katherina is still being deprived of food and sleep but she can’t understand why. She is so hungry that she begins begging Grumio for some food. Grumio decides to tease her and offers her food, tempting her and making her hungrier, but then finds a reason for why he cannot give it to her. For example, he offers Katherina a “neat’s foot,” and she asks if she can eat it but then Grumio changes his mind and claims that it is “too choleric a meat.
” Katherina gets annoyed by his teasing and so she beats him. It is understandable but it shows that she is not yet fully reformed. However, we can see that she is learning to hold back. When a tailor comes to their house, Katherina tries on a cap, which she feels fits fine but Petruchio wants her to have a bigger size. Katherina protests and says, “Gentlewomen wear such caps as these,” yet, Petruchio says that when she is “gentle” she can have one. This is a good reason for not letting her have it because in the future, if she wants something she might be gentle so that she can have it.
Also, when she was opposing against Petruchio she claimed that it was the style in fashion. However, when doing this she corrected her husband and women at that time were not supposed. When trying to get the cap, Katherina said, “I trust I may have leave to speak, and speak I will. ” In doing this, she was speaking her mind and if she did not do this it would be against her character. This also shows that she has not yet calmed down. Katherina begins to see a pattern of how when she does something good, she is rewarded, even so, she is still not yet the obedient, household Kate.
In the beginning of Act 4, Scene 5, Katherina has still not learnt to obey Petruchio and when he claims it is the night even though it is the day Katherina contradicts him. When she did this, Petruchio ordered everyone back home, as she did not want to go home, the second time, when Petruchio claimed the sun was the moon, she agreed with him. Hortensio then told Petruchio that she is no longer a shrew and that he can stop being intimidating and a tedious person but Petruchio tells Hortensio that it is not quite finished yet.
To test whether or not she had become the domestic Kate, he asks her to embrace Vincentio, who is a man, as a young, pretty woman, and she does. Petruchio then asks her why she is embracing him as though he is a woman, when he is a man who is old, wrinkled and faded. Before, Katherina would have exclaimed how he told her to, however, instead of blaming him, she merely asks for him to pardon her mistake. When she does this Petruchio knows that the taming process is complete.