William Shakespeare

(26 April 1564 - 23 April 1616 / Warwickshire)

William Shakespeare Quotes

  • ''Tell me where is fancy bred,
    Or in the heart or in the head?
    How begot, how nourished?
    Reply, reply.
    It is engendered in the eyes,
    With gazing fed, and fancy dies
    In the cradle where it lies.
    Let us all ring fancy's knell.
    I'll begin it. Ding, dong, bell.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Song, in The Merchant of Venice, act 3, sc. 2, l. 63-71. The rhymes and the idea of dying help to guide Bassanio to choose the leaden casket; love ("fancy") was supposed to enter the heart through the eyes.
    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • ''We were as twinned lambs that did frisk i' the sun
    And bleat the one at th' other. What we changed
    Was innocence for innocence; we knew not
    The doctrine of ill-doing, nor dreamed
    That any did. Had we pursued that life,
    And our weak spirits ne'er been higher reared
    With stronger blood, we should have answered heaven
    Boldly "Not guilty," the imposition cleared
    Hereditary ours.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British poet. The Winter's Tale (I, ii). On his childhood friendship with Leontes; "changes" means exchanged. The Unabridged William Shakespeare, William George Clark and William Aldis Wright, eds. (1989) Running Press.
    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • ''There's language in her eye, her cheek, her lip,
    Nay, her foot speaks; her wanton spirits look out
    At every joint and motive of her body.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Ulysses, in Troilus and Cressida, act 4, sc. 5, l. 55-7. Condemning Cressida, who has been kissed in turn by all the Greek leaders.
    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • ''He is as valiant as the lion, churlish as the bear, slow as the elephant.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Alexander, in Troilus and Cressida, act 1, sc. 2, l. 20-1. Describing the huge but dim-witted Ajax.
    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • ''Thou art a soldier only, speak no more.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Antony, in Antony and Cleopatra, act 2, sc. 2, l. 107. Rebuking his lieutenant Enobarbus.
    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • ''There's husbandry in heaven,
    Their candles are all out.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Banquo, in Macbeth, act 2, sc. 1, l. 4-5. Husbandry means thrift, meaning the stars are not visible.
    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • ''Our wooing doth not end like an old play.
    Jack hath not Jill.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Berowne, in Love's Labor's Lost, act 5, sc. 2, l. 874-5. The courtiers have to practice austerity for a year before the ladies will have them.
    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • ''For I can raise no money by vile means.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Brutus, in Julius Caesar, act 4, sc. 3, l. 71.
    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • ''I promise you, but for your company,
    I would have been a-bed an hour ago.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Capulet, in Romeo and Juliet, act 3, sc. 4, l. 6-7. To Paris, who has been hoping to see Juliet.
    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • ''Thus far with rough and all-unable pen
    Our bending author hath pursued the story.
    In little room confining mighty men.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Chorus, in Henry V, act 5, epilogue, l. 1-3. The "little room" refers to the theater.
    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.

Read more quotations »
Best Poem of William Shakespeare

Shall I Compare Thee To A Summer's Day? (Sonnet 18)

Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate.
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,
And summer's lease hath all too short a date.
Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines,
And often is his gold complexion dimmed;
And every fair from fair sometime declines,
By chance, or nature's changing course, untrimmed;
But thy eternal summer shall not fade,
Nor lose possession of that fair thou ow'st,
Nor shall death brag thou wand'rest in his shade,
When in eternal lines to Time thou grow'st.
So long as men can breathe, or ...

Read the full of Shall I Compare Thee To A Summer's Day? (Sonnet 18)

Sonnet Lxvi

Tired with all these, for restful death I cry,
As, to behold desert a beggar born,
And needy nothing trimm'd in jollity,
And purest faith unhappily forsworn,
And guilded honour shamefully misplaced,
And maiden virtue rudely strumpeted,
And right perfection wrongfully disgraced,
And strength by limping sway disabled,
And art made tongue-tied by authority,

[Report Error]