Textual Material

Original spelling edition of the First Folio text of The Taming of the Shrew 

Edited by Michael Best for Internet Shakespeare Editions, Inc., affiliated with the University of Victoria, Canada. "The Internet Shakespeare Editions offer old spelling, draft texts of the Folio of The Taming of the Shrew. The text may be viewed in three formats:

  1. Divided into acts and scenes, following modern editions
  2. Divided into pages as the play first appeared in the Folio of 1623
  3. As a single long file (218K).

The Taming of the Shrew was first printed in the Folio of 1623, in a text that is the basis of all modern editions. The transcripts presented here follow the Folio as exactly as an electronic version permits; spelling follows the original, with no attempt to correct errors; word spacing is normalized; and modern forms are substituted for letters and ligatures that have no modern equivalent in current browsers (for example, the long 's')."

A Pleasant Conceited History, Called The Taming of a Shrew 

Published in 1594, about the same time as Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew, this is almost certainly a pirated version of Shakespeare's play, made with the help of one of the players in his troupe (a "memorial" version), though some scholars have argued that it is a source of Shakespeare's play (unlikely based on textual evidence), and others claim it is a separate version of the story based on the same source that Shakespeare used. This text is made available through the University of Virginia's E-Text Library, which is a subscription service. For a plot summary by Dr. Michael Delahoyde, of Washington State University, click here.

The Quarto of The Taming of a Shrew 

From the British Library's web site, "Treasures in Full: Shakespeare in Quarto," this page gives pictures of and information about the 1594 quarto edition of The Taming of a Shrew, as well as background information on the evidence for the earliest performances of this play and of Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew.

Gascoigne's The Supposes 

If The Taming of a Shrew is a version rather than a source of The Taming of the Shrew, then Shakespeare's direct source for the Bianca/Lucentio subplot was probably George Gascoigne's translation of Lodovico Ariosto's comedy, I Suppositi, and the first English prose stage comedy. For a biography of Gascoigne, click here.

Commedia dell'arte: One of the inspirations for The Taming of the Shrew was this Italian comedic form. These are two encyclopedia articles about the character types of commedia dell'arte, one from The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th edition, 2001, and the other from The Wikipedia Encyclopedia Project.