William Shakespeare Quotes
''Freedom, high-day! high-day, freedom! freedom, high-day, freedom!''William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Caliban, in The Tempest, act 2, sc. 2, l. 186-7. Caliban is only exchanging one kind of servitude, under Prospero, for another, under Stephano and Trinculo.
''O, that's a brave man! he writes brave verses, speaksWilliam Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Celia, in As You Like It, act 3, sc. 4, l. 40-2. Mocking Orlando; "brave" means "fine," used ironically.
brave words, swears brave oaths, and breaks them bravely.''
''That I might sleep out this great gap of timeWilliam Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Cleopatra, in Antony and Cleopatra, act 1, sc. 5, l. 5.
My Antony is away.''
''In her days every man shall eat in safetyWilliam Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Cranmer, in Henry VIII, act 5, sc. 4, l. 33-5. Anticipating the reign of Queen Elizabeth I; the terms recall biblical passages such as Micah 4:3-4.
Under his own vine what he plants, and sing
The merry songs of peace to all his neighbors.''
''Thou are the king of honor.''William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Douglas, in Henry IV, Part 1, act 4, sc. 1, l. 10. To Hotspur, who has gained honor or fame on the battlefield.
''He will to his Egyptian dish again.''William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Enobarbus, in Antony and Cleopatra, act 2, sc. 7, l. 126. Foreseeing that Antony, though married and in Rome, will not stay away from Cleopatra.
''A man can die but once, we owe God a death.''William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Feeble, in Henry IV, Part 2, act 3, sc. 2, l. 234-5. Proverbial; Feeble shows his courage.
''More matter with less art.''William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Gertrude, in Hamlet, act 2, sc. 2, l. 95. To Polonius, who claims to know the cause of Hamlet's madness but is being long-winded in coming to the point; "art" means rhetorical decoration.
''Remember thee?William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British poet. Hamlet (I, v). NAWM-1. The Unabridged William Shakespeare, William George Clark and William Aldis Wright, eds. (1989) Running Press.
Ay, thou poor ghost, whiles memory holds a seat
In this distracted globe. Remember thee?
Yea, from the table of my memory
I'll wipe away all trivial fond records,
All saws of books, all forms, all pressures past
That youth and observation copied there,
And thy commandment all alone shall live
Within the book and volume of my brain,''
''Rebellious hell,William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Hamlet, in Hamlet, act 3, sc. 4, l. 82-5. Reproaching his mother for marrying her late husband's brother, a marriage Hamlet regards as springing from lust.
If thou canst mutine in a matron's bones,
To flaming youth let virtue be as wax
And melt in her own fire.''
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A Lover's Complaint
FROM off a hill whose concave womb reworded
A plaintful story from a sistering vale,
My spirits to attend this double voice accorded,
And down I laid to list the sad-tuned tale;
Ere long espied a fickle maid full pale,
Tearing of papers, breaking rings a-twain,
Storming her world with sorrow's wind and rain.
Upon her head a platted hive of straw,
Which fortified her visage from the sun,
Whereon the thought might think sometime it saw
The carcass of beauty spent and done:
Time had not scythed all ...
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