William Shakespeare

(26 April 1564 - 23 April 1616 / Warwickshire)

William Shakespeare Quotes

  • ''Well, if Fortune be a woman, she's a good wench for this gear.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Launcelot Gobbo, in The Merchant of Venice, act 2, sc. 2, l. 166-7. Fortune was depicted as a goddess; "gear" means business; Launcelot has the good fortune to be taken on as a servant by Bassanio.
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  • ''Let me not to the marriage of true minds
    Admit impediments. Love is not love
    Which alters when it alteration finds,
    Or bends with the remover to remove.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British poet. Let me not to the marriage of true minds (l. 1-4). . . The Unabridged William Shakespeare, William George Clark and William Aldis Wright, eds. (1989) Running Press.
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  • ''Is this a dagger which I see before me,
    The handle toward my hand? Come, let me clutch thee.
    I have thee not, and yet I see thee still.
    Art thou not, fatal vision, sensible
    To feeling as to sight? Or art thou but
    A dagger of the mind, a false creation
    Proceeding from the heat-oppressèd brain?''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Macbeth, in Macbeth, act 2, sc. 1, l. 33-39 (1623). Soliloquy preceding the murder of Duncan.
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  • ''He hath borne himself beyond the promise of his age, doing, in the figure of a lamb, the feats of a lion.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Messenger, in Much Ado About Nothing, act 1, sc. 1, l. 13-5. On the feats of young Claudio in battle.
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  • ''Would any but these boiled-brains of nineteen and two-and-twenty hunt this weather?''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Old Shepherd, in The Winter's Tale, act 3, sc. 3, l. 63-5. That is, in the gloom of a great storm.
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  • ''Here is my journey's end, here is my butt
    And very sea-mark of my utmost sail.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Othello, in Othello, act 5, sc. 2, l. 267-8. "Butt" means goal; a sea-mark was a beacon or landmark to guide ships to harbor.
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  • ''Nothing but sit and sit, and eat and eat!''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Petruchio, in The Taming of the Shrew, act 5, sc. 2, l. 12. At Lucentio's banquet to celebrate his marriage.
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  • ''O, these naughty times
    Puts bars between the owners and their rights!''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Portia, in The Merchant of Venice, act 3, sc. 2, l. 18-9. "Naughty" means wicked; "bars" means barriers; she is regretting that she cannot choose a husband for herself.
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  • ''Knowing I loved my books, he furnished me
    From mine own library with volumes that
    I prize above my dukedom.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Prospero, in The Tempest, act 1, sc. 2, l. 166-8. On the loyal Gonzalo, who provided him with books in his exile.
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  • ''Your words and performances are no kin together.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Roderigo, in Othello, act 4, sc. 2, l. 182-3. On the gap between what Iago promises and what he does.
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Best Poem of William Shakespeare

Fear No More

Fear no more the heat o' the sun;
Nor the furious winter's rages,
Thou thy worldly task hast done,
Home art gone, and ta'en thy wages;
Golden lads and girls all must,
As chimney sweepers come to dust.

Fear no more the frown of the great,
Thou art past the tyrant's stroke:
Care no more to clothe and eat;
To thee the reed is as the oak:
The sceptre, learning, physic, must
All follow this, and come to dust.

Fear no more the lightning-flash,
Nor the all-dread thunder-stone;
Fear not slander, censure rash;
Thou hast finished joy ...

Read the full of Fear No More

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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