William Shakespeare Quotes
''I saw her onceWilliam Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Enobarbus, in Antony and Cleopatra, act 2, sc. 2, l. 228-31. Cleopatra's charm in her less than queenly behavior.
Hop forty paces through the public street;
And having lost her breath, she spoke, and panted,
That she did make defect perfection.''
''Well, if my wind were but long enough to say my prayers, I would repent.''William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Falstaff, in The Merry Wives of Windsor, act 4, sc. 5, l. 102-3. On being cheated and beaten; "wind" = breath.
''To my sick soul, as sin's true nature is,William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Gertrude, in Hamlet, act 4, sc. 5, l. 17-20. "Toy" means trifle; "jealousy"means suspicion; "spills" means reveals and destroys.
Each toy seems prologue to some great amiss.
So full of artless jealousy is guilt,
It spills itself in fearing to be spilt.''
''What is a man,William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British poet. Hamlet (IV, iv). NAWM-1. The Unabridged William Shakespeare, William George Clark and William Aldis Wright, eds. (1989) Running Press.
If his chief good and market of his time
Be but to sleep and feed? A beast, no more.
Sure he that made us with such large discourse,
Looking before and after, gave us not
That capability and godlike reason
To fust in us unused. Now, whether it be
Bestial oblivion, or some craven scruple
Of thinking too precisely on th' event
A thought which, quartered, hath but one part wisdom
And ever three parts cowardI do not know
Why yet I live to say "This thing's to do,"
Sith I have cause, and will, and strength, and means
To do 't. Examples gross as earth exhort me:''
''Thy commandment all alone shall liveWilliam Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Hamlet, in Hamlet, act 1, sc. 5, l. 102-4. Taking the Ghost's demand for revenge as a military order (command), and a biblical injunction (commandment).
Within the book and volume of my brain
Unmixed with baser matter.''
''Hortensio. What happy galeWilliam Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Hortensio and Petruchio, in The Taming of the Shrew, act 1, sc. 2, l. 48-52.
Blows you to Padua here from old Verona?
Petruchio. Such wind as scatters young men through the world
To seek their fortunes farther than at home,
Where small experience grows.''
''Hath Britain all the sun that shines? day? night?William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Imogen, in Cymbeline, act 3, sc. 4, l. 136-7. Alluding to the proverb, "The sun shines on all alike."
Are they not but in Britain?''
''Is there no pity sitting in the clouds,William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Juliet, in Romeo and Juliet, act 3, sc. 5, l. 196-7. To her mother, making grief for her cousin Tybalt's death a reason for delaying the proposed marriage with Paris.
That sees into the bottom of my grief?''
''O God of battles, steel my soldiers' hearts.William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. King Henry, in Henry V, act 4, sc. 1, l. 289-92. "Sense of reckoning" means ability to gauge the odds against winning; the French army is much larger.
Possess them not with fear. Take from them now
The sense of reckoning, ere th' opposed numbers
Pluck their hearts from them.''
''Let's take the instant by the forward top;William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. King of France, in All's Well That Ends Well, act 5, sc. 3, l. 40-2. being old, he must move quickly if he is to see the results of his actions; compare the proverb, "Seize occasion by the forelock, for she is bald behind."
For we are old, and on our quick'st decrees
Th' inaudible and noiseless foot of time
Steals ere we can effect them.''
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All The World's A Stage
All the world's a stage,
And all the men and women merely players;
They have their exits and their entrances,
And one man in his time plays many parts,
His acts being seven ages. At first, the infant,
Mewling and puking in the nurse's arms.
Then the whining schoolboy, with his satchel
And shining morning face, creeping like snail
Unwillingly to school. And then the lover,
Sighing like furnace, with a woeful ballad
Made to his mistress' eyebrow. Then a soldier,
Full of strange oaths and bearded like the pard,
Jealous in honor, sudden and quick in ...
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;