William Shakespeare Quotes

Come to my woman's breasts, And take my milk for gall, you murdering ministers, Wherever in your sightless substances You wait on nature's mischief!
William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Lady Macbeth, in Macbeth, act 1, sc. 5, l. 46-9. Summoning spirits ("ministers") to make her ruthless; "sightless" means invisible.
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You see me here, you gods, a poor old man, As full of grief as age, wretched in both.
William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Lear, in King Lear, act 2, sc. 4, l. 272-3.
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I have almost forgot the taste of fears. The time has been, my senses would have cooled To hear a night-shriek, and my fell of hair Would at a dismal treatise rouse and stir As life were in't. I have supped full with horrors; Direness, familiar to my slaughterous thoughts, Cannot once start me.
William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Macbeth, in Macbeth, act 5, sc. 5, l. 9-15. "My fell" means my skin covered in hair, or all my hair; "dismal treatise" means horror story.
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Yet have I fierce affections, and think What Venus did with Mars.
William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Mardian, in Antony and Cleopatra, act 1, sc. 5, l. 17-8. An eunuch speaks of his desires.
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In poison there is physic, and these news, Having been well, that would have made me sick, Being sick, have in some measure made me well.
William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Northumberland, in Henry IV, Part 2, act 1, sc. 1, l. 137-9. Bad news stimulates him to act.
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They shall yet belie thy happy years That say thou art a man. Diana's lip Is not more smooth and rubious; thy small pipe Is as the maiden's organ, shrill and sound, And all is semblative a woman's part.
William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Orsino, in Twelfth Night, act 1, sc. 4, l. 30-4. Almost penetrating Viola's disguise as his page Cesario; "rubious" means red; "pipe" means voice; "is semblative" means resembles.
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It is yours, And might we lay th'old proverb to your charge, So like you, 'tis the worse.
William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Paulina, in The Winter's Tale, act 2, sc. 3, l. 96-8. Showing Leontes his baby daughter; implying that it would be better for the child if she were not like her father.
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You have some sick offence within your mind, Which by the right and virtue of my place I ought to know of.
William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Portia, in Julius Caesar, act 2, sc. 1, l. 268-70. Demanding, as Brutus's wife, to know what troubles him.
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Seven times tried that judgment is That did never choose amiss. Some there be that shadows kiss, Such have but a shadow's bliss.
William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Prince of Arragon, in The Merchant of Venice, act 2, sc. 9, l. 66-7. The message in the silver casket telling him his hopes were illusory.
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Conscience is but a word that cowards use, Devised at first to keep the strong in awe.
William Shakespeare (1564-1616), British dramatist, poet. Richard, in Richard III, act 5, sc. 3, l. 309-10. Dismissing the conscience that had so troubled him in his dreams before the battle with Richmond.
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