William Shakespeare

(26 April 1564 - 23 April 1616 / Warwickshire)

William Shakespeare Quotes

  • ''The poop was beaten gold,
    Purple the sails, and so perfumed that
    The winds were love-sick with them.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Enobarbus, in Antony and Cleopatra, act 2, sc. 2, l. 192-4. Describing the barge in which Antony first saw Cleopatra.
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  • ''Thyself thou gav'st, thy own worth then not knowing,
    Or me, to whom thou gav'st it, else mistaking;
    So thy great gift, upon misprision growing,
    Comes home again, on better judgement making.
    Thus have I had thee, as a dream doth flatter,
    In sleep a king, but, waking, no such matter.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British poet. Farewell! Thou art too dear for my possessing (l. 9-14). . . The Unabridged William Shakespeare, William George Clark and William Aldis Wright, eds. (1989) Running Press.
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  • ''Sweets to the sweet, farewell!''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Gertrude, in Hamlet, act 5, sc. 1, l. 243. Scattering flowers on the corpse of Ophelia.
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  • ''A mote it is to trouble the mind's eye.
    In the most high and palmy state of Rome,
    A little ere the mightiest Julius fell,
    The graves stood tenantless and the sheeted dead
    Did squeak and gibber in the Roman streets;
    As stars with trains of fire and dews of blood,
    Disasters in the sun; and the moist star
    Upon whose influence Neptune's empire stands
    Was sick almost to doomsday with eclipse.
    And even the like precurse of feared events,
    As harbingers preceding still the fates
    And prologue to the omen coming on,
    Have heaven and earth together demonstrated
    Unto our climatures and countrymen.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British poet. Hamlet (I, i). on the disturbing appearance of the ghost of Hamlet's father. NAWM-1. The Unabridged William Shakespeare, William George Clark and William Aldis Wright, eds. (1989) Running Press.
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  • ''To be honest, as this world goes, is to be one man picked
    out of ten thousand.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Hamlet, in Hamlet, act 2, sc. 2, l. 178-9. Speaking to Polonius in real or pretended cynicism.
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  • ''By my troth, this is the old fashion. You two never meet but you fall to some discord.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Hostess, in Henry IV, Part 2, act 2, sc. 4, l. 55-6. On Falstaff and Doll Tearsheet.
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  • ''Ere I could
    Give him that parting kiss which I had set
    Betwixt two charming words, comes in my father,
    And like the tyrannous breathing of the north
    Shakes all our buds from growing.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Imogen, in Cymbeline, act 1, sc. 3, l. 33-7. Recalling her parting from Posthumus, her husband, who is banished; "charming words" means words which may protect him from evil; "north" means north wind.
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  • ''Men at some time are masters of their fates,
    The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars,
    But in ourselves, that we are underlings.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British poet. Julius Caesar (I, ii). NAWM-1. The Unabridged William Shakespeare, William George Clark and William Aldis Wright, eds. (1989) Running Press.
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  • ''What says she, fair one? That the tongues of men are full of
    deceits?''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. King Henry, in Henry V, act 5, sc. 2, l. 117-8. Discovering that Katherine understands his English flattery.
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  • ''O, but they say the tongues of dying men
    Enforce attention like deep harmony.
    Where words are scarce, they are seldom spent in vain,
    For they breathe truth that breathe their words in pain.
    He that no more must say is listened more
    Than they whom youth and ease have taught to glose.
    More are men's ends marked than their lives before.
    The setting sun, and music at the close,
    As the last taste of sweets, is sweetest last,
    Writ in remembrance more than things long past.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British poet. King Richard II (II, i). OHFP. The Unabridged William Shakespeare, William George Clark and William Aldis Wright, eds. (1989) Running Press.
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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 Ci

O truant Muse, what shall be thy amends
For thy neglect of truth in beauty dyed?
Both truth and beauty on my love depends;
So dost thou too, and therein dignified.
Make answer, Muse: wilt thou not haply say
'Truth needs no colour, with his colour fix'd;
Beauty no pencil, beauty's truth to lay;
But best is best, if never intermix'd?'
Because he needs no praise, wilt thou be dumb?

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