William Shakespeare

(26 April 1564 - 23 April 1616 / Warwickshire)

William Shakespeare Quotes

  • ''Make me to see't, or at the least so prove it
    That the probation bear no hinge nor loop
    To hang a doubt on.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Othello, in Othello, act 3, sc. 3, l. 364-6. "Probation" means proof.
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  • ''Phebe. Good shepherd, tell this youth what 'tis to love.
    Silvius. It is to be all made of sighs and tears.
    ...
    It is to be all made of faith and service.
    ...
    It is to be all made of fantasy,
    All made of passion, and all made of wishes,
    All adoration, duty, and observance,
    All humbleness, all patience, and impatience,
    All purity, all trial, all observance.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Phebe and Silvius, in As You Like It, act 5, sc. 2, l. 83-98. A definition of love by the infatuated Silvius; "fantasy" means imagination.
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  • ''Is there no way for men to be, but women
    Must be half-workers?''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Posthumus, in Cymbeline, act 2, sc. 5, l. 1-2. Beginning Posthumus's outburst of misogyny when he falsely believes Imogen to be unfaithful; "half-workers" means accessories, part responsible.
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  • ''The fringèd curtains of thine eye advance,
    And say what thou seest yond.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Prospero, in The Tempest, act 1, sc. 2, l. 409-10. "Advance" means lift up, implying Miranda has been demurely looking down; she now sees young Ferdinand.
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  • ''There is thy gold—worse poison to men's souls,
    Doing more murder in this loathsome world
    Than these poor compounds that thou mayst not sell.
    I sell thee poison; thou hast sold me none.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British poet. Romeo and Juliet (V, i). . . The Unabridged William Shakespeare, William George Clark and William Aldis Wright, eds. (1989) Running Press.
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  • ''Never alone
    Did the King sigh, but with a general groan.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Rosencrantz, in Hamlet, act 3, sc. 3, l. 22-3. The obsequious courtier speaking to Claudius.
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  • ''Ne'er ask me what raiment I'll wear, for I have no more doublets than backs, no more stockings than legs, nor no more shoes than feet—nay, sometime more feet than shoes, or such shoes as my toes look through the overleather.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Sly, in The Taming of the Shrew, Induction, sc. 2, l. 8-12. The drunkard, Sly, protests he has hardly any clothes.
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  • ''The master, the swabber, the boatswain and I,
    The gunner and his mate,
    Loved Mall, Meg, and Marian and Margery,
    But none of us cared for Kate;
    For she had a tongue with a tang,
    Would cry to a sailor, 'Go hang!'
    She loved not the savour of tar nor of pitch,
    Yet a tailor might scratch her where'er she did itch:
    Then to sea, boys, and let her go hang.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British poet. The Tempest (II, ii). . . The Unabridged William Shakespeare, William George Clark and William Aldis Wright, eds. (1989) Running Press.
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  • ''I'll haunt thee like a wicked conscience still.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Troilus, in Troilus and Cressida, act 5, sc. 10, l. 28. Speaking of Achilles, who has slain the unarmed Hector.
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  • ''What's past and what's to come is strewed with husks
    And formless ruin of oblivion;
    But in this extant moment, faith and truth,
    Strained purely from all hollow bias-drawing,
    Bids thee, with most divine integrity,
    From heart of very heart, great Hector, welcome!''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Agamemnon, in Troilus and Cressida, act 4, sc. 5, l. 166-71. Greeting Hector with pleasure in a moment of truce, free from all insincerity or deviation from truth ("hollow bias-drawing").
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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 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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