The Taming of the Shrew

by: William Shakespeare

Act V, scene ii

Lucentio’s marriage takes a different turn, however. Through Bianca’s refusal to come when called, Shakespeare suggests that this marriage will be hard on Lucentio. Bianca might turn out to be as stubborn in her role as a wife as she was mild in her role as a maid. Thus, in his last few lines, Petruchio observes, “We three are married, but you two are sped” (V.ii.189). That is, the other two—Lucentio and Hortensio—seem destined for unhappiness in marriage, given the disobedient natures of their wives. Petruchio fought tooth and nail to finally win Kate, but he worked hard only because he wanted her to truly allow herself to accept, or choose, obedience in married life. Lucentio, deceived by Bianca’s meekness and flirtatious behavior when they were single, now finds that it is “a harsh hearing when women are froward” (V.ii.187).