William Shakespeare

(26 April 1564 - 23 April 1616 / Warwickshire)

William Shakespeare Quotes

  • ''Aeneas. 'Tis the old Nestor.
    Hector. Let me embrace thee, good old chronicle,
    That hast so long walked hand in hand with time.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Aeneas and Hector, in Troilus and Cressida, act 4, sc. 5, l. 201-3. Aeneas is introducing Hector to the Greek warriors during a truce.
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  • ''There's a great spirit gone!''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Antony, in Antony and Cleopatra, act 1, sc. 2, l. 122. Antony has just learned of the death of his wife, Fulvia.
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  • ''What presence must not know,
    From where you do remain let paper show.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Aumerle, in Richard II, act 1, sc. 3, l. 249-50. To the exiled Bolingbroke: "presence" means royal presence, King Richard; and also, our inability to talk face to face.
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  • ''Thou and I are too wise to woo peaceably.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Benedick, in Much Ado About Nothing, act 5, sc. 2, l. 72. To Beatrice; neither of them wants to admit to passion.
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  • ''Every drop of blood
    That every Roman bears, and nobly bears,
    Is guilty of a several bastardy
    If he do break the smallest particle
    Of any promise that hath passed from him.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Brutus, in Julius Caesar, act 2, sc. 1, l. 136-40. Expressing his confidence in the idea of being a Roman.
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  • ''You are no surer, no,
    Than is the coal of fire upon the ice,
    Or hailstone in the sun.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Caius Marcius, later Coriolanus, in Coriolanus, act 1, sc. 1, l. 172-4. A patrician tells the people they cannot be trusted.
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  • ''Let us sit and mock the good huswife Fortune from her wheel,
    that her gifts may henceforth be bestowed equally.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Celia, in As You Like It, act 1, sc. 2, l. 31-3. The goddess Fortune turns her wheel bringing both good and bad luck; Celia playfully refers to her as a housewife at a spinning wheel.
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  • ''Shall we rest us here,
    And by relating tales of others' griefs,
    See if 'twill teach us to forget our own?''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Cleon, in Pericles, act 1, sc. 4, l. 1-3. "Griefs" = miseries; Cleon's city is afflicted by famine.
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  • ''Love all, trust a few,
    Do wrong to none.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Countess of Rossillion, in All's Well That Ends Well, act 1, sc. 1, l. 64-5. A mother's advice to her young son Bertram, as he is summoned by the King to Paris.
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  • ''Why, what's the matter,
    That you have such a February face,
    So full of frost, of storm and cloudiness?''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Don Pedro, in Much Ado About Nothing, act 5, sc. 4, l. 40-2. He is still angry with his friend Claudio.
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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 Lxxvii

Thy glass will show thee how thy beauties wear,
Thy dial how thy precious minutes waste;
The vacant leaves thy mind's imprint will bear,
And of this book this learning mayst thou taste.
The wrinkles which thy glass will truly show
Of mouthed graves will give thee memory;
Thou by thy dial's shady stealth mayst know
Time's thievish progress to eternity.
Look, what thy memory can not contain

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