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.
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  • ''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.
  • ''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).
  • ''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.
  • ''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.
  • ''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.
  • ''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.
  • ''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.
  • ''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.
  • ''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.

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Best Poem of William Shakespeare

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 ...

Read the full of All The World's A Stage

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,

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