William Shakespeare

(26 April 1564 - 23 April 1616 / Warwickshire)

William Shakespeare Quotes

  • ''I thank God I am not a woman, to be touched with so many
    giddy offences as he hath generally taxed their whole sex
    withal.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Rosalind, in As You Like It, act 3, sc. 2, l. 347-50. She is disguised as a boy, and mocks her own sex in speaking to Orlando.
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  • ''We have heard the chimes at midnight, Master Shallow.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Sir John Falstaff, in Henry IV pt. 2, act 3, sc. 2, l. 211 (1600). Referring to the youthful antics of Falstaff and Justice Shallow. Chimes at Midnight was the title of Orson Welles's 1966 film based on Shakespeare's portrayal of Falstaff, with Welles himself in the central role.
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  • ''Old Nestor—whose wit was mouldy ere your grandsires had nails on their toes.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Thersites, in Troilus and Cressida, act 2, sc. 1, l. 104-6. "Wit" = intelligence; Nestor is the oldest of the Greek generals; Thersites is speaking to Achilles and Ajax.
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  • ''Thus men may grow wiser every day.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Touchstone, in As You Like It, act 1, sc. 2, l. 137. On hearing the destruction of three young men by a wrestler described as sport for ladies; Touchstone is being ironic.
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  • ''When to the sessions of sweet silent thought
    I summon up remembrance of things past,
    I sigh the lack of many a thing I sought,
    And with old woes new wail my dear time's waste.
    Then can I drown an eye, unus'd to flow.
    For precious friends hid in death's dateless night
    And weep afresh love's long since cancell'd woe,
    And moan th' expense of many a vanish'd sight.
    Then can I grieve at grievances foregone.
    And heavily from woe to woe tell o'er
    The sad account of fore-bemoaned moan,
    Which I new pay as if not paid before.
    But if the while I think on thee, dear friend,
    All losses are restor'd and sorrows end.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British poet. Whne to the sessions of sweet silent thought (l. 1-14). . . The Unabridged William Shakespeare, William George Clark and William Aldis Wright, eds. (1989) Running Press.
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  • ''In my youth I never did apply
    Hot and rebellious liquors in my blood.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Adam, in As You Like It, act 2, sc. 3, l. 48-9. Adam's recipe for a healthy old age.
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  • ''Virtue is beauty, but the beauteous evil.
    Are empty trunks o'erflourished by the devil.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Antonio, in Twelfth Night, act 3, sc. 4, l. 369-70. Those who are beautiful on the outside but evil within are like vacant bodies or chests covered over with ornament.
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  • ''Remember I have done thee worthy service,
    Told thee no lies, made no mistakings, served
    Without or grudge or grumblings.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Ariel, in The Tempest, act 1, sc. 2, l. 247-9. Prospero's "airy spirit" reminds Prospero of the service he has given.
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  • ''Prove that ever I lose more blood with love than I will get again with drinking, pick out mine eyes with a ballad-maker's pen and hang me up at the door of a brothel-house for the sign of blind Cupid.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Benedick, in Much Ado About Nothing, act 1, sc. 1, l. 250-4. sighing was thought to dry up the blood, and drinking wine to produce new blood; Benedick scorns the very idea of love by associating it with sentimental ballads and the brothel-house. Cupid was often depicted with blindfold eyes, since his arrows were shot at random.
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  • ''You are my true and honorable wife,
    As dear to me as are the ruddy drops
    That visit my sad heart.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Brutus, in Julius Caesar, act 2, sc. 1, l. 288-90. To Portia.
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Best Poem of William Shakespeare

O Mistress Mine, Where Are You Roaming? (Twelfth Night, Act Ii, Scene Iii)

O mistress mine, where are you roaming?
O stay and hear! your true-love's coming
That can sing both high and low;
Trip no further, pretty sweeting,
Journey's end in lovers' meeting-
Every wise man's son doth know.

What is love? 'tis not hereafter;
Present mirth hath present laughter;
What's to come is still unsure:
In delay there lies no plenty,-
Then come kiss me, Sweet and twenty,
Youth's a stuff will not endure.

Read the full of O Mistress Mine, Where Are You Roaming? (Twelfth Night, Act Ii, Scene Iii)

Sonnet Li

Thus can my love excuse the slow offence
Of my dull bearer when from thee I speed:
From where thou art why should I haste me thence?
Till I return, of posting is no need.
O, what excuse will my poor beast then find,
When swift extremity can seem but slow?
Then should I spur, though mounted on the wind;
In winged speed no motion shall I know:
Then can no horse with my desire keep pace;