William Shakespeare

(26 April 1564 - 23 April 1616 / Warwickshire)

William Shakespeare Quotes

  • ''Nought's had, all's spent,
    Where our desire is got without content.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Lady Macbeth, in Macbeth, act 3, sc. 2, l. 4-5. "Content" means contentment.
    22 person liked.
    12 person did not like.
  • ''So we'll live,
    And pray, and sing, and tell old tales, and laugh
    At gilded butterflies, and hear poor rogues
    Talk of court news; and we'll talk with them too—
    Who loses and who wins; who's in, who's out—
    And take upon 's the mystery of things,
    As if we were God's spies.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Lear, in King Lear, act 5, sc. 3, l. 11-7. Imagining being imprisoned with his daughter Cordelia; "gilded butterflies" probably refers to extravagantly dressed courtiers.
    20 person liked.
    17 person did not like.
  • ''The course of true love never did run smooth.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Lysander, in A Midsummer Night's Dream, act 1, sc. 1, l. 134 (1600).
    61 person liked.
    12 person did not like.
  • ''Let us not be dainty of leave-taking,
    But shift away.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Malcolm, in Macbeth, act 2, sc. 3, l. 144-5. "Dainty of" means particular about.
    22 person liked.
    16 person did not like.
  • ''My mistress' eyes are nothing like the sun;
    Coral is far more red than her lips' red;
    If snow be white, why then her breasts are dun;
    If hairs be wires, black wires grow on her head.
    I have seen roses damasked, red and white,
    But no such roses see I in her cheeks,
    And in some perfumes there is more delight
    Than in the breath that from my mistress reeks.
    I love to hear her speak, yet well I know
    That music hath a far more pleasing sound;
    I grant I never saw a goddess go:
    My mistress when she walks treads on the ground.
    And yet by heaven I think my love as rare
    As any she belied with false compare.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British poet. My mistress' eyes are nothing like the sun (l. 1-14). . . The Unabridged William Shakespeare, William George Clark and William Aldis Wright, eds. (1989) Running Press.
    31 person liked.
    13 person did not like.
  • ''That's a valiant flea that dare eat his breakfast on the lip
    of a lion.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Orleans, in Henry V, act 3, sc. 7, l. 145-6.
    25 person liked.
    15 person did not like.
  • ''I have told you enough of this. For my part I'll not meddle nor make no farther.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Pandarus, in Troilus and Cressida, act 1, sc. 1, l. 13-14. "Meddle nor make" was a proverbial phrase, "make" meaning "have anything to do with it"; he is refusing to help Troilus.
    897 person liked.
    513 person did not like.
  • ''We are oft to blame in this,
    'Tis too much proved, that with devotion's visage
    And pious action we do sugar o'er
    The devil himself.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Polonius, in Hamlet, act 3, sc. 1, l. 45-8. Using Ophelia, made to hold a prayer book, to spy on Hamlet; for the moment he realizes what he is doing is wrong.
    21 person liked.
    13 person did not like.
  • ''Well, thus we play the fools with the time, and the spirits of
    the wise sit in the clouds and mock us.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Prince Hal, in Henry IV, Part 2, act 2, sc. 2, l. 142-3. Recognizing that in fooling with his tavern companions he is wasting time.
    29 person liked.
    11 person did not like.
  • ''They that stand high have many blasts to shake them,
    And if they fall, they dash themselves to pieces.''
    William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Queen Margaret, in Richard III, act 1, sc. 3, l. 258-9. As she, the widow of Henry VI, has become an object of scorn in the court of Edward IV.
    24 person liked.
    14 person did not like.

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Best Poem of William Shakespeare

A Lover's Complaint

FROM off a hill whose concave womb reworded
A plaintful story from a sistering vale,
My spirits to attend this double voice accorded,
And down I laid to list the sad-tuned tale;
Ere long espied a fickle maid full pale,
Tearing of papers, breaking rings a-twain,
Storming her world with sorrow's wind and rain.

Upon her head a platted hive of straw,
Which fortified her visage from the sun,
Whereon the thought might think sometime it saw
The carcass of beauty spent and done:
Time had not scythed all ...

Read the full of A Lover's Complaint

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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