William Shakespeare

(26 April 1564 - 23 April 1616 / Warwickshire)

William Shakespeare Quotes

  • ''Who are the violets now
    That strew the green lap of the new-come spring?''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Duchess of York, in Richard II, act 5, sc. 2, l. 46-7. Asking her son Aumerle to tell her who is in favor with the new King Henry IV.
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  • ''Now he weighs time
    Even to the utmost grain.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Exeter, in Henry V, act 2, sc. 4, l. 137-8. Recalling how as Prince Hal, Henry wasted time; a grain is the smallest unit of weight.
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  • ''Feste. The better for my foes and the worse for my friends.
    Orsino. Just the contrary: the better for thy friends.
    Feste. No, sir, the worse.
    Orsino. How can that be?
    Feste. ...They praise me, and make an ass of me. Now my foes tell me plainly I am an ass; so that by my foes, sir, I profit in the knowledge of myself, and by my friends I am abused.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Feste and Orsino, in Twelfth Night, act 5, sc. 1, l. 12-20. Feste's friends flatter him, so that he is deceived and badly treated ("abused").
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  • ''Murder most foul, as in the best it is,
    But this most foul, strange, and unnatural.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Ghost, in Hamlet, act 1, sc. 5, l. 27-8 (1604). The ghost claims the "foul" murderer was his brother.
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  • ''See what a grace was seated on this brow:
    Hyperion's curls, the front of Jove himself,
    An eye like Mars, to threaten and command.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Hamlet, in Hamlet, act 3, sc. 4, l. 55-7. To Gertrude, seeing his father in a picture as like Hyperion, the ancient Greek sun-god, for beauty; having a forehead (front) like Jupiter; and an eye like the god of war.
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  • ''Rightly to be great
    Is not to stir without great argument,
    But greatly to find quarrel in a straw
    When honor's at the stake.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Hamlet, in Hamlet, act 4, sc. 4, l. 53-6. True greatness consists not in fighting for any trivial cause, unless honor is involved, when it is noble to act.
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  • ''I had rather be a kitten and cry mew
    Than one of these same metre ballad-mongers.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Hotspur, in Henry IV, Part 1, act 3, sc. 1, l. 127-8. Expressing in verse his scorn for it.
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  • ''Yes, I do think that you might pardon him,
    And neither heaven nor man grieve at the mercy.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Isabella, in Measure for Measure, act 2, sc. 2, l. 49-50. Pleading for the life of her brother, who is condemned to death.
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  • ''At your return visit our house; let our old acquaintance be renewed.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Justice Shallow, in Henry IV, Part 2, act 3, sc. 2, l. 294. Inviting Falstaff to return.
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  • ''I think the King is but a man, as I am. The violet smells to
    him as it doth to me.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. King Henry, in Henry V, act 4, sc. 1, l. 101-2. Henry is in disguise, speaking with common soldiers.
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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 Cviii

What's in the brain that ink may character
Which hath not figured to thee my true spirit?
What's new to speak, what new to register,
That may express my love or thy dear merit?
Nothing, sweet boy; but yet, like prayers divine,
I must, each day say o'er the very same,
Counting no old thing old, thou mine, I thine,
Even as when first I hallow'd thy fair name.
So that eternal love in love's fresh case