William Shakespeare Quotes
''The murmuring surge,William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Edgar, in King Lear, act 4, sc. 6, l. 20-2. Imagining being on the cliffs at Dover.
That on th' unnumbered idle pebble chafes,
Cannot be heard so high.''
''To the latter end of a fray and the beginning of a feastWilliam Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Falstaff, in Henry IV, Part 1, act 4, sc. 2, l. 79-80. He prefers feasting to fighting.
Fits a dull fighter and a keen guest.''
''What we have we prize not to the worthWilliam Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Friar Francis, in Much Ado About Nothing, act 4, sc. 1, l. 218-22. We do not value at its true worth what we possess, but when we lose a possession, we exaggerate ("rack") its value; he is thinking of Claudio's harsh treatment of Hero.
Whiles we enjoy it, but being lacked and lost,
Why, then we rack the value, then we find
The virtue that possession would not show us
Whiles it was ours.''
''There are a sort of men whose visagesWilliam Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Gratiano, in The Merchant of Venice, act 1, sc. 1, l. 88-94. The idea is that their faces take on a set expression, like the puckered or wrinkled scum on a stagnant pond; "opinion" means reputation; "conceit" means imagination.
Do cream and mantle like a standing pond,
And do a willful stillness entertain,
With purpose to be dressed in an opinion
Of wisdom, gravity, profound conceit,
As who should say, "I am Sir Oracle,
And when I ope my lips let no dog bark!"''
''My pulse as yours doth temperately keep time,William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Hamlet, in Hamlet, act 3, sc. 4, l. 140-2. To Gertrude, who thinks Hamlet is mad.
And makes as healthful music. It is not madness
That I have uttered.''
''Some Cupid kills with arrows, some with traps.''William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Hero, in Much Ado About Nothing, act 3, sc. 1, l. 106. Hero's device to make Beatrice admit she loves Benedick has proved successful.
''She never yet was foolish that was fair,William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Iago, in Othello, act 2, sc. 1, l. 137-8. No matter how silly, a beautiful woman may win a rich husband and have a child; "heir" may have two meanings.
For even her folly helped her to an heir.''
''All places that the eye of heaven visitsWilliam Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. John of Gaunt, in Richard II, act 1, sc. 3, l. 275-6. Advising his banished son, Bolingbroke.
Are to a wise man ports and happy havens.''
''O Westmoreland, thou art a summer bird,William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. King Henry, in Henry IV, Part 2, act 4, sc. 4, l. 91-3. Haunch means backside, latter part.
Which ever in the haunch of winter sings
The lifting up of day.''
''Therefore doth heaven divideWilliam Shakespeare (1564-1616), British poet. King Henry V (I, ii). NAEL-1. The Unabridged William Shakespeare, William George Clark and William Aldis Wright, eds. (1989) Running Press.
The state of man in divers functions,
Setting endeavor in continual motion,
To which is fixed, as an aim or butt,
Obedience; for so work the honeybees,
Creatures that by a rule in nature teach
The act of order to a peopled kingdom.''
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A Fairy Song
Over hill, over dale,
Thorough bush, thorough brier,
Over park, over pale,
Thorough flood, thorough fire!
I do wander everywhere,
Swifter than the moon's sphere;
And I serve the Fairy Queen,
To dew her orbs upon the green;
The cowslips tall her pensioners be;
In their gold coats spots you see;
Those be rubies, fairy favours;
In those freckles live their savours;
I must go seek some dewdrops here,
And hang a pearl in every cowslip's ear.
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