Christopher Sly, Induction II
Scene summary: Back at the house, the servants place Sly in the lord’s bed with fine clothes and jewelry, and the lord outfits himself as one of the servants. When Sly awakes, they present him with good wine and food and tell him that he is their master. He protests that he remembers being a poor tinker (a mender of pots), and they explain that this memory is but the result of a madness from which he has suffered for fifteen years. They put on quite a show, pleading and wailing in feigned distress at his continued illness, but Sly remains skeptical. However, when his “wife” is mentioned, Sly is finally convinced. Overjoyed that their master’s memory has returned, the servants try to entertain him. Sly attempts to dismiss the servants so that he can sleep with his wife (who is actually the disguised page, Bartholomew), but his wife explains apologetically that his physicians have ordered her to stay out of his bed for another night or two, lest his madness return. The players arrive to perform for the enjoyment of Sly and his wife. The play that they perform constitutes the rest of "The Taming of the Shrew."
Link to the full summary and the information source: "The Taming of the Shrew, " SparkNotes.com - http://www.sparknotes.com/shakespeare/shrew/section1.rhtml
Image Source: Circulating Collection, Print and Picture Collection, Free Library of Philadelphia. Subject: "The Taming of the Shrew" – Shakespeare.
Original source: Engraved by C.W. Sharpe from a painting by W.Q. Orchardson, A.R.A.