William Shakespeare

(26 April 1564 - 23 April 1616 / Warwickshire)

William Shakespeare Quotes

  • ''For her own person,
    It beggared all description: she did lie
    In her pavilion—cloth of gold, of tissue—
    O'er-picturing that Venus where we see
    The fancy outwork nature.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Enobarbus, in Antony and Cleopatra, act 2, sc. 2, l. 197-201. Cleopatra as she first appeared to Antony, outdoing Venus, the goddess of love.
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  • ''Your lordship, though not clean past your youth, have yet some smack of age in you, some relish of the saltness of time.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Falstaff, to the Lord Chief Justice, in King Henry IV, Part 2, act 1, sc. 2. "Saltness" means sharp or bitter taste.
  • ''Do not for ever with thy vailed lids
    Seek for thy noble father in the dust.
    Thou know'st 'tis common, all that lives must die,
    Passing through nature to eternity.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Gertrude, in Hamlet, act 1, sc. 2, l. 70-3. Offering commonplace Christian comfort to Hamlet, who is in mourning for his father's death.
  • ''What's Hecuba to him, or he to Hecuba,
    That he should weep for her? What would he do
    Had he the motive and the cue for passion
    That I have? He would drown the stage with tears
    And cleave the general ear with horrid speech,
    Make mad the guilty and appall the free,
    Confound the ignorant, and amaze indeed
    The very faculties of eyes and ears. Yet I,
    A dull and muddy-mettled rascal, peak
    Like John-a-dreams, unpregnant of my cause,
    And can say nothing—no, not for a king
    Upon whose property and most dear life
    A damned defeat was made.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British poet. Hamlet (II, ii). Meditating on the player who weeps as he narrates the death of Hecuba, Queen of Troy, and on his own failure to act. NAWM-1. The Unabridged William Shakespeare, William George Clark and William Aldis Wright, eds. (1989) Running Press.
  • ''How weary, stale, flat, and unprofitable
    Seem to me all the uses of this world!
    Fie on't, ah fie! 'tis an unweeded garden
    That grows to seed, things rank and gross in nature
    Possess it merely.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Hamlet, in Hamlet, act 1, sc. 2, l. 133-7. Hamlet's world-weariness following his mother's remarriage.
  • ''There's small choice in rotten apples.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Hortensio, in The Taming of the Shrew, act 1, sc. 1, l. 134-5. Shakespeare might have coined this proverb.
  • ''I am ill, but your being by me
    Cannot amend me; society is no comfort
    To one not sociable. I am not very sick,
    Since I can reason of it.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Imogen, in Cymbeline, act 4, sc. 2, l. 11-14. She is begging to be left alone.
  • ''There is a tide in the affairs of men
    Which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune;
    Omitted, all the voyage of their life
    Is bound in shallows and in miseries.
    On such a full sea are we now afloat,
    And we must take the current when it serves
    Or lose our ventures.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British poet. Julius Caesar (IV, iii). NAWM-1. The Unabridged William Shakespeare, William George Clark and William Aldis Wright, eds. (1989) Running Press.
  • ''O Kate, nice customs curtsy to great kings. Dear Kate, you
    and I cannot be confined within the weak list of a country's
    fashion. We are the makers of manners, Kate.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. King Henry, in Henry V, act 5, sc. 2, l. 268-71. "Nice" means punctilious or particular; "weak list" means feeble bounds or barriers.
  • ''King Richard. Lions make leopards tame.
    Mowbray. Yea, but not change his spots.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. King Richard and Mowbray, in Richard II, act 1, sc. 1, l. 174-5. Richard sees himself as a lion, the king of beasts.

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Best Poem of William Shakespeare

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 ...

Read the full of All The World's A Stage

Sonnet Lxvi

Tired with all these, for restful death I cry,
As, to behold desert a beggar born,
And needy nothing trimm'd in jollity,
And purest faith unhappily forsworn,
And guilded honour shamefully misplaced,
And maiden virtue rudely strumpeted,
And right perfection wrongfully disgraced,
And strength by limping sway disabled,
And art made tongue-tied by authority,

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