William Shakespeare

(26 April 1564 - 23 April 1616 / Warwickshire)

William Shakespeare Quotes

  • ''I am not yet of Percy's mind, the Hotspur of the north, he
    that kills me some six or seven dozen of Scots at a breakfast,
    washes his hands, and says to his wife, "Fie upon this quiet
    life! I want work."''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Prince Hal, in Henry IV, Part 1, act 2, sc. 4, l. 101-5. Mocking Hotspur's devotion to fighting.
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  • ''The lady protests too much, methinks.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Queen Gertrude, in Hamlet, act 3, sc. 2, l. 219 (1604). Referring to the Player Queen in the "Mousetrap"Mthe play-within-a-play—who has just sworn never to re-marry if her husband died. "Protests" is used in the sense of "proclaims" rather than "complains."
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  • ''My business was great, and in such a case as mine a man may strain courtesy.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Romeo, in Romeo and Juliet, act 2, sc. 4, l. 49-51. Apologizing for dodging away from Mercutio; his "business" was to make love to Juliet.
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  • ''He receives comfort like cold porridge.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Sebastian, in The Tempest, act 2, sc. 1, l. 10-11 (1623).
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  • ''But thy eternal summer shall not fade.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Sonnet 18, "Shall I Compare Thee to a Summer's Day?" (1609).
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  • ''My long sickness
    Of health and living now begins to mend,
    And nothing brings me all things.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Timon, in Timon of Athens, act 5, sc. 1, l. 186-8. Foreseeing his death.
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  • ''O, when degree is shaked,
    Which is the ladder to all high designs,
    The enterprise is sick.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Ulysses, in Troilus and Cressida, act 1, sc. 3, l. 101-3. By "degree" he means hierarchy, the relative positions of people on a social scale; "enterprise" = social or political project, here the Trojan war.
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  • ''Alonzo. What, all so soon asleep! I wish mine eyes
    Would, with themselves, shut up my thoughts. I find
    They are inclined to do so.
    Sebastian. Please you, sir,
    Do not omit the heavy offer of it.
    It seldom visits sorrow; when it doth,
    It is a comforter.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Alonzo and Sebastian, in The Tempest, act 2, sc. 1, l. 191-6. Ariel's music has made them drowsy.
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  • ''When that the poor have cried, Caesar hath wept;
    Ambition should be made of sterner stuff.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Antony, in Julius Caesar, act 3, sc. 2, l. 91-2.
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  • ''Would I were with him, wheresoe'er he is, either in heaven
    or in hell!''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Bardolph, in Henry V, act 2, sc. 3, l. 7-8. On hearing that Falstaff is dead.
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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