William Shakespeare

(26 April 1564 - 23 April 1616 / Warwickshire)

William Shakespeare Quotes

  • ''Be bloody, bold, and resolute; laugh to scorn
    The power of man; for none of woman born
    Shall harm Macbeth.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. 2nd Apparition, in Macbeth, act 4, sc. 1, l. 79-81.
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  • ''Dreams are toys.
    Yet for this once, yea, superstitiously,
    I will be squared by this.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Antigonus, in The Winter's Tale, act 3, sc. 3, l. 39-41. Dreams are trifles ("toys"), yet Antigonus allows himself to be directed ("squared") in his course of action by his dream of Hermione.
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  • ''If you have tears, prepare to shed them now.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Antony, in Julius Caesar, act 3, sc. 2, l. 169. Displaying the body of Caesar to the people.
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  • ''It is my cousin's duty to make curtsy and say, "Father, as it please you." But yet for all that, cousin, let him be a handsome fellow, or else make another curtsy and say, "Father, as it please me."''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Beatrice, in Much Ado About Nothing, act 2, sc. 1, l. 52-6.
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  • ''There we may rehearse most obscenely and courageously.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Bottom, in A Midsummer Night's Dream, act 1, sc. 2, l. 107-8. "Obscenely" is Bottom's mistake for "seemly" (fitly).
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  • ''That high All-seer which I dallied with
    Hath turned my feigned prayer on my head,
    And given in earnest what I begged in jest.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Buckingham, in Richard III, act 4, sc. 5, l. 20-2. Buckingham had called on God to punish him if he was ever false to King Edward, and now goes to his death, executed by Richard.
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  • ''Cassius. Will you dine with me tomorrow?
    Casca. Ay, if I be alive, and your mind hold, and your dinner be worth the eating.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Cassius and Casca, in Julius Caesar, act 1, sc. 2, l. 290-2.
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  • ''What, courage, man! What though care killed a cat, thou hast mettle enough in thee to kill care.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Claudio, in Much Ado About Nothing, act 5, sc. 1, l. 132-4. To Benedick, who is unusually serious and full of care; "care will kill a cat" is proverbial.
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  • ''I wish you all joy of the worm.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Clown, in Antony and Cleopatra, act 5, sc. 2, l. 260. His parting words to Cleopatra as he leaves her the asps or snakes she uses to kill herself.
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  • ''Comparisons are odorous.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Dogberry, in Much Ado About Nothing, act 3, sc. 5, l. 16. Meaning "odious," and getting the proverb amusingly wrong.
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Best Poem of William Shakespeare

A Fairy Song

Over hill, over dale,
Thorough bush, thorough brier,
Over park, over pale,
Thorough flood, thorough fire!
I do wander everywhere,
Swifter than the moon's sphere;
And I serve the Fairy Queen,
To dew her orbs upon the green;
The cowslips tall her pensioners be;
In their gold coats spots you see;
Those be rubies, fairy favours;
In those freckles live their savours;
I must go seek some dewdrops here,
And hang a pearl in every cowslip's ear.

Read the full of A Fairy Song

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;