The Taming of the Shrew

1967 movie with Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton

Katherina's final submission

ELIZABETH TAYLOR SHREW SUBMISSION PICTURES, PAGE 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  12  13  14  15  16  17  18

These 18 pages of images represent the final scene from William Shakespeare's play The Taming of the Shrew.  Petruchio has just spent the whole play trying to tame the titular shrew Katherina, whom he has married but not been able to make a wife of.  At his meedk sister-in-law's wedding, he makes a bet with her new husband and a third man regarding whose wife will be most obedient and come quickest when summoned.  After the other wives blow off their husbands' requests, the supposed shrew Katherina blows their minds.  She not only comes forth immediately, but comes literally strong-arming the disobedient wives ahead of her. She concludes the play with a great speech chastising these lowly "worms" for disloyalty for their husbands who face hardship and danger at land and sea to provide for them while they lie comfortable and safe at home.  He "craves no other tribute at thy hands But love, fair looks, and true obedience- Too little payment for so great a debt."

This ritual public statement of submission and obedience to the man is considered controversial among some modern feminist types.  This point is made much less objectionable and perhaps more interestingly artistically ambiguous in the presentation of the last minute in the movie.  It involves no extra dialogue at all, but as Petruchio is saying goodnight to the crowd, Taylor's Katherina is already heading out the back door.  The last seconds of the film have Petruchio pushing his way through the laughing crowd, hustling to catch up to the woman who has just made such a baroquely detailed public statement of obedience.  This invites speculation as to what exactly "tamed" means.  She loves and honors her husband, but she remains high spirited.


Bice Valori as the Widow in The Taming of the Shrew, 1967





KATHERINA. 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 worins!
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.
PETRUCHIO. Why, there's a wench! Come on, and kiss me, Kate.


BEATING SIS PICTURES 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8


ELIZABETH TAYLOR SHREW SUBMISSION PICTURES, PAGE 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  12  13  14  15  16  17  18



THE TAMING OF THE SHREW - the complete text of the Shakespeare play




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