William Shakespeare Quotes
''You are a thousand times a properer manWilliam Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Rosalind, in As You Like It, act 3, sc. 5, l. 51-3. Disguised as a man, she advises Silvius, who loves Phebe, who is in love with Rosalind; "properer" means more handsome.
Than she a woman. 'Tis such fools as you
That makes the world full of ill-favored children.''
''This was a way to thrive, and he was blest;William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Shylock, in The Merchant of Venice, act 1, sc. 3, l. 89-90. Defending usury by reference to Jacob's skill in increasing his flocks of sheep and goats (Genesis 30: 32-43).
And thrift is blessing, if men steal it not.''
''Let fame, that all hunt after in their lives,William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. The King, in Love's Labor's Lost, act 1, sc. 1, l. 1-7. The King of Navarre's lofty idea of gaining eternal fame through the "breath" or breathing-space of three years of hermit- like study.
Live registered upon our brazen tombs,
And then grace us in the disgrace of death;
When spite of cormorant devouring Time,
Th' endeavor of this present breath may buy
That honor which shall bate his scythe's keen edge,
And make us heirs of all eternity.''
''Dost thou not perceiveWilliam Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Titus, in Titus Andronicus, act 3, sc. 1, l. 53-4. Speaking to his son Lucius, who has just been banished from Rome.
That Rome is but a wilderness of tigers?''
''I have perhaps some shallow spirit of judgment,William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Warwick, in Henry VI, Part 1, act 2, sc. 4, l. 17-8. "Sharp quillets" means nice distinctions; a daw is a jackdaw, proverbial for foolishness.
But in these nice sharp quillets of the law,
Good faith, I am no wiser than a daw.''
''Eye of newt and toe of frog,William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. 2nd Witch, in Macbeth, act 4, sc. 1, l. 14-9. The parts of creatures include the forked tongue of the poisonous adder, and the "sting" of the blind-worm, a lizard that is in fact harmless.
Wool of bat and tongue of dog,
Adder's fork and blind-worm's sting,
Lizard's leg and owlet's wing,
For a charm of powerful trouble,
Like a hell-broth boil and bubble.''
''When the sun shines, let foolish gnats make sport,William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Antipholus of Syracuse, in The Comedy of Errors, act 2, sc. 2, l. 30-1.
But creep in crannies, when he hides his beams.''
''The commonwealth of Athens is become a forest of beasts.''William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Apemantus, in Timon of Athens, act 4, sc. 3, l. 347-8. His cynical view of the state of Athens.
''Good Lord, for alliance! Thus goes every one to the world but I, and I am sunburnt; I may sit in a corner and cry "Heigh-ho for a husband!"''William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Beatrice, in Much Ado About Nothing, act 2, sc. 1, l. 318-20. To Claudio, who claims the privilege through marriage of "alliance" in calling Beatrice cousin; she feels left out, or "sunburnt" means dry and withered.
''For Nym, he hath heard that men of few words are the best men,William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Boy, in Henry V, act 3, sc. 2, l. 36-8.
and therefore he scorns to say his prayers, lest 'a should be
thought a coward.''
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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 ...
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,