Study Guide

Baptista Minola in The Taming of the Shrew

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Baptista Minola

Baptista is the wheeling and dealing father in search of suitable husbands for his daughters, Bianca and Katherine. Baptista treats marriage negotiations like a business – his girls go to the highest bidders and he's not above taking a bribe or two from any suitor looking to get on his good side. (Insofar as Baptista is willing to use his daughters for his own personal gain, Baptista is a bit like Ophelia's father, Polonius, in Hamlet. Both of these guys are accused of acting like "pimps.") Baptista's business comes back to bite him when two of Bianca's suitors dress up like tutors and infiltrate his home. Bianca runs off and elopes with one of these characters, making dear old dad look like a chump. Baptista is also punished for favoring Bianca and failing to see that his little princess is not the good girl that she appears to be.

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