William Shakespeare Quotes
''The beasts, the fishes, and the winged fowlsWilliam Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Luciana, in The Comedy of Errors, act 2, sc. 1, l. 18-25. An Elizabethan view of marriage, rejected with spirit by Adriana, to whom it is addressed.
Are their males' subjects and at their controls:
Man, more divine, the master of all these,
Lord of the wide world and wild watery seas,
Indued with intellectual sense and souls,
Of more pre-eminence than fish and fowls,
Are masters to their females, and their lords:
Then let your will attend on their accords.''
''What rhubarb, senna, or what purgative drugWilliam Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Macbeth, in Macbeth, act 5, sc. 3, l. 55-6. Wishing he could get rid of his enemies by purging.
Would scour these English hence?''
''Now no way can I stray;William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Mowbray, in Richard II, act 1, sc. 3, l. 206-7. "Stray" means take a wrong turn.
Save back to England, all the world's my way.''
''Lord Hamlet, with his doublet all unbraced,William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Ophelia, in Hamlet, act 2, sc. 1, l. 75-8. Describing to Polonius the distraught state of Hamlet, who appears like a ghost; "down-gyved" means fallen down like fetters.
No hat upon his head, his stockings fouled,
Ungartered, and down-gyved to his ankle,
Pale as his shirt, his knees knocking each other,
And with a look so piteous in purport
As if he had been loosed out of hell
To speak of horrors.''
''My story being done,William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Othello, in Othello, act 1, sc. 3, l. 158-61. On his courtship of Desdemona by telling her the story of his life.
She gave me for my pains a world of sighs;
She swore, in faith 'twas strange, 'twas passing strange;
'Twas pitiful, 'twas wondrous pitiful.''
''He makes a July's day short as December,William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Polixenes, in The Winter's Tale, act 1, sc. 2, l. 169-71. On the pleasure his son gives him.
And with his varying childness cures in me
Thoughts that would thick my blood.''
''These lies are like their father that begets them, grossWilliam Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Prince Hal, in Henry IV, Part 1, act 2, sc. 4, l. 225-6. To Falstaff, who has hugely exaggerated his account of a fight with the disguised Prince and Poins; "gross" means huge, and hence obvious.
as a mountain, open, palpable.''
''So happy be the issue, brother England,William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Queen Isabel, in Henry V, act 5, sc. 2, l. 12-3. The French Queen hopes for a happy outcome ("issue") to the negotiations for peace.
Of this good day and of this gracious meeting.''
''But that a joy past joy calls out on me,William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Romeo, in Romeo and Juliet, act 3, sc. 3, l. 173-4. On leaving Friar Lawrence to go to Juliet.
It were a grief, so brief to part with thee.''
''He has the prettiest love-songs for maids, so without bawdry, which is strange.''William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Servant, in The Winter's Tale, act 4, sc. 4, l. 193-4. On Autolycus, who is peddling ballads.
Read more quotations »
All The World's A Stage
All the world's a stage,
And all the men and women merely players;
They have their exits and their entrances,
And one man in his time plays many parts,
His acts being seven ages. At first, the infant,
Mewling and puking in the nurse's arms.
Then the whining schoolboy, with his satchel
And shining morning face, creeping like snail
Unwillingly to school. And then the lover,
Sighing like furnace, with a woeful ballad
Made to his mistress' eyebrow. Then a soldier,
Full of strange oaths and bearded like the pard,
Jealous in honor, sudden and quick in ...
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