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William Shakespeare Quotes in alphabetical order

(2012-04-05 17:07:58)


1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 - 8 - 9 - 10 - 11
William Shakespeare

A fool thinks himself to be wise, but a wise man knows himself to be a fool.

A man loves the meat in his youth that he cannot endure in his age.
A peace is of the nature of a conquest; for then both parties nobly are subdued, and neither party loser.
Absence from those we love is self from self - a deadly banishment.
Alas, I am a woman friendless, hopeless!
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.
Ambition should be made of sterner stuff.
An overflow of good converts to bad.
And oftentimes excusing of a fault doth make the fault the worse by the excuse.
And this, our life, exempt from public haunt, finds tongues in trees, books in the running brooks, sermons in stones, and good in everything.
As flies to wanton boys, are we to the gods; they kill us for their sport.
As he was valiant, I honour him. But as he was ambitious, I slew him.
As soon go kindle fire with snow, as seek to quench the fire of love with words.
Be not afraid of greatness: some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them.
Better a witty fool than a foolish wit.
Better three hours too soon than a minute too late.
Boldness be my friend.
Brevity is the soul of wit.
But men are men; the best sometimes forget.
But O, how bitter a thing it is to look into happiness through another man's eyes.
By that sin fell the angels.
Children wish fathers looked but with their eyes; fathers that children with their judgment looked; and either may be wrong.
Come, gentlemen, I hope we shall drink down all unkindness.
Cowards die many times before their deaths; the valiant never taste of death but once.
Death is a fearful thing.
Desire of having is the sin of covetousness.
Everyone ought to bear patiently the results of his own conduct.
Exceeds man's might: that dwells with the gods above.
Expectation is the root of all heartache.
Faith, there hath been many great men that have flattered the people who ne'er loved them.
False face must hide what the false heart doth know.
Farewell, fair cruelty.
Fishes live in the sea, as men do a-land; the great ones eat up the little ones.
For I can raise no money by vile means.
For my part, it was Greek to me.
Fortune brings in some boats that are not steered.
Give every man thy ear, but few thy voice.
Give me my robe, put on my crown; I have Immortal longings in me.
Give thy thoughts no tongue.
Go to you bosom: Knock there, and ask your heart what it doth know.
God has given you one face, and you make yourself another.
God hath given you one face, and you make yourselves another.
Having nothing, nothing can he lose.
He does it with better grace, but I do it more natural.
He is winding the watch of his wit; by and by it will strike.
He that is giddy thinks the world turns round.
He that loves to be flattered is worthy o' the flatterer.
Heat not a furnace for your foe so hot that it do singe yourself.
Hell is empty and all the devils are here.
How far that little candle throws its beams! So shines a good deed in a naughty world.
How oft the sight of means to do ill deeds makes ill deeds done!
How poor are they that have not patience! What wound did ever heal but by degrees?
How sharper than a serpent's tooth it is to have a thankless child!
How well he's read, to reason against reading!
I am not bound to please thee with my answer.
I bear a charmed life.
I dote on his very absence.
I had rather have a fool to make me merry than experience to make me sad and to travel for it too!
I hold the world but as the world, Gratiano; A stage where every man must play a part, And mine is a sad one.
I like not fair terms and a villain's mind.
I may neither choose who I would, nor refuse who I dislike; so is the will of a living daughter curbed by the will of a dead father.
I never see thy face but I think upon hell-fire.
I say there is no darkness but ignorance.
I see that the fashion wears out more apparel than the man.
I shall the effect of this good lesson keeps as watchman to my heart.
I was adored once too.
I wasted time, and now doth time waste me.
I were better to be eaten to death with a rust than to be scoured to nothing with perpetual motion.
I will praise any man that will praise me.

If it be a sin to covet honor, I am the most offending soul.
If music be the food of love, play on.
If to do were as easy as to know what were good to do, chapels had been churches, and poor men's cottage princes' palaces.
If we are marked to die, we are enough to do our country loss; and if to live, the fewer men, the greater share of honor.
If you can look into the seeds of time, and say which grain will grow and which will not, speak then unto me.
If you have tears, prepare to shed them now.
If you prick us do we not bleed? If you tickle us do we not laugh? If you poison us do we not die? And if you wrong us shall we not revenge?
Ignorance is the curse of God; knowledge is the wing wherewith we fly to heaven.
In a false quarrel there is no true valor.
In time we hate that which we often fear.
Is it not strange that desire should so many years outlive performance?
It is a wise father that knows his own child.
It is not in the stars to hold our destiny but in ourselves.
It is the stars, The stars above us, govern our conditions.
It will have blood, they say; blood will have blood.
Lawless are they that make their wills their law.
Let every eye negotiate for itself and trust no agent.
Let me embrace thee, sour adversity, for wise men say it is the wisest course.
Let no such man be trusted.
Life every man holds dear; but the dear man holds honor far more precious dear than life.
Life is as tedious as twice-told tale, vexing the dull ear of a drowsy man.
Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player, that struts and frets his hour upon the stage, and then is heard no more; it is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.
Like as the waves make towards the pebbl'd shore, so do our minutes, hasten to their end.
Listen to many, speak to a few.
Lord, Lord, how subject we old men are to this vice of lying!
Love all, trust a few, do wrong to none.
Love is a smoke made with the fume of sighs.
Love is not love that alters when it alteration finds.
Love is too young to know what conscience is.
Love sought is good, but given unsought, is better.
Love to faults is always blind, always is to joy inclined. Lawless, winged, and unconfined, and breaks all chains from every mind.
Maids want nothing but husbands, and when they have them, they want everything.
Many a good hanging prevents a bad marriage.
Men are April when they woo, December when they wed. Maids are May when they are maids, but the sky changes when they are wives.
Men shut their doors against a setting sun.
Men's vows are women's traitors!
Mind your speech a little lest you should mar your fortunes.
Modest doubt is called the beacon of the wise.
Most dangerous is that temptation that doth goad us on to sin in loving virtue.
My crown is called content, a crown that seldom kings enjoy.
My pride fell with my fortunes.
Nature hath framed strange fellows in her time.
Neither a borrower nor a lender be.
No legacy is so rich as honesty.
No, I will be the pattern of all patience; I will say nothing.
Nothing can come of nothing.
Now is the winter of our discontent.
Now, God be praised, that to believing souls gives light in darkness, comfort in despair.
O God, O God, how weary, stale, flat, and unprofitable seem to me all the uses of this world!
O thou invisible spirit of wine, if thou hast no name to be known by, let us call thee devil.
O, had I but followed the arts!
O, what a goodly outside falsehood hath!
O! for a muse of fire, that would ascend the brightest heaven of invention.
O! Let me not be mad, not mad, sweet heaven; keep me in temper; I would not be mad!
O' What may man within him hide, though angel on the outward side!
One touch of nature makes the whole world kin.
Our doubts are traitors and make us lose the good we oft might win by fearing to attempt.
Our peace shall stand as firm as rocky mountains.
Parting is such sweet sorrow.
Pleasure and action make the hours seem short.
Poor and content is rich, and rich enough.
Praise us as we are tasted, allow us as we prove.
Reputation is an idle and most false imposition; oft got without merit, and lost without deserving.
So foul and fair a day I have not seen.
Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them.
Some rise by sin, and some by virtue fall.
Speak low, if you speak love.
Such as we are made of, such we be.
Suit the action to the word, the word to the action.
Suspicion always haunts the guilty mind.
Sweet are the uses of adversity which, like the toad, ugly and venomous, wears yet a precious jewel in his head.
Sweet mercy is nobility's true badge.
Talking isn't doing. It is a kind of good deed to say well; and yet words are not deeds.
Teach not thy lip such scorn, for it was made For kissing, lady, not for such contempt.
The attempt and not the deed confounds us.
The course of true love never did run smooth.
The devil can cite Scripture for his purpose.
The empty vessel makes the loudest sound.
The evil that men do lives after them; the good is oft interred with their bones.
The fashion of the world is to avoid cost, and you encounter it.
The golden age is before us, not behind us.
The lady doth protest too much, methinks.
The love of heaven makes one heavenly.
The lunatic, the lover, and the poet, are of imagination all compact.
The man that hath no music in himself, Nor is not moved with concord of sweet sounds, is fit for treasons, stratagems and spoils.
The most peaceable way for you, if you do take a thief, is, to let him show himself what he is and steal out of your company.
The robbed that smiles, steals something from the thief.
The stroke of death is as a lover's pinch, which hurts and is desired.
The undiscovered country from whose bourn no traveler returns.
The valiant never taste of death but once.
The very substance of the ambitious is merely the shadow of a dream.
The wheel is come full circle.
There have been many great men that have flattered the people who ne'er loved them.
There is a tide in the affairs of men, Which taken at the flood, leads on to fortune. Omitted, all the voyage of their life is bound in shallows and in miseries. On such a full sea are we now afloat. And we must take the current when it serves, or lose our ventures.
There is no darkness but ignorance.
There is nothing either good or bad but thinking makes it so.
There was never yet fair woman but she made mouths in a glass.
There's many a man has more hair than wit.
There's no art to find the mind's construction in the face.
There's not a note of mine that's worth the noting.
There's place and means for every man alive.
They do not love that do not show their love.
They say miracles are past.
Things done well and with a care, exempt themselves from fear.
Things won are done, joy's soul lies in the doing.
This above all; to thine own self be true.
Time and the hour run through the roughest day.
'Tis best to weigh the enemy more mighty than he seems.
'Tis better to bear the ills we have than fly to others that we know not of.
'Tis not enough to help the feeble up, but to support them after.
'Tis one thing to be tempted, another thing to fall.
To be, or not to be: that is the question.
To do a great right do a little wrong.
To thine own self be true, and it must follow, as the night the day, thou canst not then be false to any man.
Truly, I would not hang a dog by my will, much more a man who hath any honesty in him.
Uneasy lies the head that wears a crown.
Use every man after his desert, and who should scape whipping?
Virtue is bold, and goodness never fearful.
Virtue itself scapes not calumnious strokes.
We are time's subjects, and time bids be gone.
We cannot conceive of matter being formed of nothing, since things require a seed to start from... Therefore there is not anything which returns to nothing, but all things return dissolved into their elements.
We know what we are, but know not what we may be.
Well, if Fortune be a woman, she's a good wench for this gear.
What a piece of work is a man, how noble in reason, how infinite in faculties, in form and moving how express and admirable, in action how like an angel, in apprehension how like a god.
What is past is prologue.
What, man, defy the devil. Consider, he's an enemy to mankind.
What's done can't be undone.
What's in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.
When a father gives to his son, both laugh; when a son gives to his father, both cry.
When sorrows come, they come not single spies, but in battalions.
When we are born we cry that we are come to this great stage of fools.
When words are scarce they are seldom spent in vain.
Where every something, being blent together turns to a wild of nothing.
Who could refrain that had a heart to love and in that heart courage to make love known?
Wisely, and slow. They stumble that run fast.
With mirth and laughter let old wrinkles come.
Women may fall when there's no strength in men.
Words without thoughts never to heaven go.
Words, words, mere words, no matter from the heart.

William Shakespeare quotes such as "To be, or not to be" and "O Romeo, Romeo! wherefore art thou Romeo?" form some of literature's most celebrated lines. Other famous Shakespeare quotes such as "I 'll not budge an inch", "We have seen better days" ,"A dish fit for the gods" and the expression it's "Greek to me" have all become catch phrases in modern day speech. Furthermore, other William Shakespeare quotes such as "to thine own self be true" have become widely spoken pearls of wisdom.

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".


To be, or not to be: that is the question". - (Act III, Scene I).

"Neither a borrower nor a lender be; For loan oft loses both itself and friend, and borrowing dulls the edge of husbandry". - (Act I, Scene III).

"This above all: to thine own self be true". - (Act I, Scene III).

"Though this be madness, yet there is method in 't.". - (Act II, Scene II).

"That it should come to this!". - (Act I, Scene II).

"There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so". - (Act II, Scene II).

"What a piece of work is man! how noble in reason! how infinite in faculty! in form and moving how express and admirable! in action how like an angel! in apprehension how like a god! the beauty of the world, the paragon of animals! ". - (Act II, Scene II).

"The lady doth protest too much, methinks". - (Act III, Scene II).

"In my mind's eye". - (Act I, Scene II).

"A little more than kin, and less than kind". - (Act I, Scene II).

"The play 's the thing wherein I'll catch the conscience of the king". - (Act II, Scene II).

"And it must follow, as the night the day, thou canst not then be false to any man". - (Act I, Scene III)."This is the very ecstasy of love". - (Act II, Scene I).

"Brevity is the soul of wit". - (Act II, Scene II).

"Doubt that the sun doth move, doubt truth to be a liar, but never doubt I love". - (Act II, Scene II).

"Rich gifts wax poor when givers prove unkind". - (Act III, Scene I).

"Do you think I am easier to be played on than a pipe?" - (Act III, Scene II).

"I will speak daggers to her, but use none". - (Act III, Scene II).

"When sorrows come, they come not single spies, but in battalions". - (Act IV, Scene V).

As You Like It

"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" - (Act II, Scene VII).

"Can one desire too much of a good thing?". - (Act IV, Scene I).

"I like this place and willingly could waste my time in it" - (Act II, Scene IV).

"How bitter a thing it is to look into happiness through another man's eyes!" - (Act V, Scene II).

"Blow, blow, thou winter wind! Thou art not so unkind as man's ingratitude".(Act II, Scene VII).

"True is it that we have seen better days". - (Act II, Scene VII).

"For ever and a day". - (Act IV, Scene I).

"The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool". - (Act V, Scene I).

King Richard III

"Now is the winter of our discontent". - (Act I, Scene I).

"A horse! a horse! my kingdom for a horse!". - (Act V, Scene IV).

"Conscience is but a word that cowards use, devised at first to keep the strong in awe". - (Act V, Scene III).

"So wise so young, they say, do never live long". - (Act III, Scene I).

"Off with his head!" - (Act III, Scene IV).

"An honest tale speeds best, being plainly told". - (Act IV, Scene IV).

"The king's name is a tower of strength". - (Act V, Scene III).

"The world is grown so bad, that wrens make prey where eagles dare not perch". - (Act I, Scene III).

Romeo and Juliet

"O Romeo, Romeo! wherefore art thou Romeo?". - (Act II, Scene II).

"It is the east, and Juliet is the sun" . - (Act II, Scene II).

"Good Night, Good night! Parting is such sweet sorrow, that I shall say good night till it be morrow." - (Act II, Scene II).

"What's in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet". - (Act II, Scene II).

"Wisely and slow; they stumble that run fast". - (Act II, Scene III).

"Tempt not a desperate man". - (Act V, Scene III).

"For you and I are past our dancing days" . - (Act I, Scene V).

"O! she doth teach the torches to burn bright". - (Act I, Scene V).

"It seems she hangs upon the cheek of night like a rich jewel in an Ethiope's ear" . - (Act I, Scene V).

"See, how she leans her cheek upon her hand! O that I were a glove upon that hand, that I might touch that cheek!". - (Act II, Scene II).

"Not stepping o'er the bounds of modesty". - (Act IV, Scene II).

The Merchant of Venice

"But love is blind, and lovers cannot see".

"If you prick us, do we not bleed? if you tickle us, do we not laugh? if you poison us, do we not die? and if you wrong us, shall we not revenge?". - (Act III, Scene I).

"The devil can cite Scripture for his purpose". - (Act I, Scene III).

"I like not fair terms and a villain's mind". - (Act I, Scene III).

The Merry Wives of Windsor

"Why, then the world 's mine oyster" - (Act II, Scene II).

"This is the short and the long of it". - (Act II, Scene II).

"I cannot tell what the dickens his name is". - (Act III, Scene II).

"As good luck would have it". - (Act III, Scene V).

Measure for Measure

"Our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we oft might win, by fearing to attempt". - (Act I, Scene IV).

"Some rise by sin, and some by virtue fall". - (Act II, Scene I).

"The miserable have no other medicine but only hope". - (Act III, Scene I).

King Henry IV, Part I

"He will give the devil his due". - (Act I, Scene II).

"The better part of valour is discretion". - (Act V, Scene IV).

King Henry IV, Part II

"He hath eaten me out of house and home". - (Act II, Scene I).

"Uneasy lies the head that wears a crown". - (Act III, Scene I).

"A man can die but once". - (Act III, Scene II).

"I do now remember the poor creature, small beer". - (Act II, Scene II).

"We have heard the chimes at midnight". - (Act III, Scene II)

King Henry IV, Part III

"The smallest worm will turn, being trodden on". - (Act II, Scene II).

"Suspicion always haunts the guilty mind; The thief doth fear each bush an officer". - (Act V, Scene VI).

King Henry the Sixth, Part I

"Delays have dangerous ends". - (Act III, Scene II).

"Of all base passions, fear is the most accursed". - (Act V, Scene II).

King Henry the Sixth, Part II

"The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers". - (Act IV, Scene II).

"Small things make base men proud". - (Act IV, Scene I).

"True nobility is exempt from fear". - (Act IV, Scene I).

King Henry the Sixth, Part III

"Having nothing, nothing can he lose".- (Act III, Scene III).

Taming of the Shrew

"I 'll not budge an inch". - (Induction, Scene I).

Timon of Athens

"We have seen better days". - (Act IV, Scene II).

 Julius Caesar

"Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears; I come to bury Caesar, not to praise him". - (Act III, Scene II).

"But, for my own part, it was Greek to me". - (Act I, Scene II).

"A dish fit for the gods". - (Act II, Scene I).

"Cry "Havoc," and let slip the dogs of war". - (Act III, Scene I).

"Et tu, Brute!" - (Act III, Scene I).

"Men at some time are masters of their fates: The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in ourselves, that we are underlings". - (Act I, Scene II).

"Not that I loved Caesar less, but that I loved Rome more". - (Act III, Scene II).

"Beware the ides of March". - (Act I, Scene II).

"This was the noblest Roman of them all". - (Act V, Scene V).

"When that the poor have cried, Caesar hath wept: Ambition should be made of sterner stuff". - (Act III, Scene II).

"Yond Cassius has a lean and hungry look; He thinks too much: such men are dangerous". (Act I, Scene II).

"For Brutus is an honourable man; So are they all, all honourable men". - (Act III, Scene II).

"As he was valiant, I honor him; but, as he was ambitious, I slew him" . - (Act III, Scene II).

"Cowards die many times before their deaths; The valiant never taste of death but once.
Of all the wonders that I yet have heard, it seems to me most strange that men should fear;
Seeing that death, a necessary end, will come when it will come". - (Act II, Scene II).


"There 's daggers in men's smiles". - (Act II, Scene III).

"what 's done is done".- (Act III, Scene II).

"I dare do all that may become a man; Who dares do more is none". - (Act I, Scene VII).

"Fair is foul, and foul is fair". - (Act I, Scene I).

"I bear a charmed life". - (Act V, Scene VIII).

"Yet do I fear thy nature; It is too full o' the milk of human kindness." - (Act I, Scene V).

"Will all great Neptune's ocean wash this blood clean from my hand? No, this my hand will rather the multitudinous seas incarnadine, making the green one red" - (Act II, Scene II).

"Double, double toil and trouble; Fire burn, and cauldron bubble." - (Act IV, Scene I).

"Out, damned spot! out, I say!" - (Act V, Scene I)..

"All the perfumes of Arabia will not sweeten this little hand." - (Act V, Scene I).

"When shall we three meet again in thunder, lightning, or in rain? When the hurlyburly 's done,
When the battle 's lost and won". - (Act I, Scene I).

"If chance will have me king, why, chance may crown me". - (Act I, Scene III).

"Nothing in his life became him like the leaving it; he died as one that had been studied in his death to throw away the dearest thing he owed, as 't were a careless trifle". - (Act I, Scene IV).

"Look like the innocent flower, but be the serpent under 't." - (Act I, Scene V).

"I have no spur to prick the sides of my intent, but only vaulting ambition, which o'erleaps itself, and falls on the other." - (Act I, Scene VII).

"Is this a dagger which I see before me, The handle toward my hand?" - (Act II, Scene I).

"Out, out, brief candle! Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player that struts and frets his hour upon the stage and then is heard no more: it is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing." - (Act V, Scene V).

King Lear

"How sharper than a serpent's tooth it is to have a thankless child!" - (Act I, Scene IV).

"I am a man more sinned against than sinning". - (Act III, Scene II).

"My love's more richer than my tongue". - (Act I, Scene I).

"Nothing will come of nothing." - (Act I, Scene I).

"Have more than thou showest, speak less than thou knowest, lend less than thou owest". - (Act I, Scene IV).

"The worst is not, So long as we can say, 'This is the worst.' " . - (Act IV, Scene I).


"‘T’is neither here nor there." - (Act IV, Scene III).

"I will wear my heart upon my sleeve for daws to peck at". - (Act I, Scene I).

"To mourn a mischief that is past and gone is the next way to draw new mischief on". - (Act I, Scene III).

"The robbed that smiles steals something from the thief". - (Act I, Scene III).

Antony and Cleopatra

"My salad days, when I was green in judgment." - (Act I, Scene V).


"The game is up." - (Act III, Scene III).

"I have not slept one wink.". - (Act III, Scene III).

Twelfth Night

"Be not afraid of greatness: some are born great, some achieve greatness and some have greatness thrust upon them". - (Act II, Scene V).

"Love sought is good, but giv'n unsought is better" . - (Act III, Scene I).

The Tempest

"We are such stuff as dreams are made on, rounded with a little sleep".

King Henry the Fifth

"Men of few words are the best men" . - (Act III, Scene II).

A Midsummer Night's Dream

"The course of true love never did run smooth". - (Act I, Scene I).

"Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind, and therefore is winged Cupid painted blind". - (Act I, Scene I).

Much Ado About Nothing

"Everyone can master a grief but he that has it". - (Act III, Scene II).

Titus Andronicus

"These words are razors to my wounded heart". - (Act I, Scene I).

The Winter's Tale

"What 's gone and what 's past help should be past grief" . - (Act III, Scene II).

"You pay a great deal too dear for what's given freely". - (Act I, Scene I).

Taming of the Shrew

"Out of the jaws of death". - (Act III, Scene IV).

"Thus the whirligig of time brings in his revenges". - (Act V, Scene I).

"For the rain it raineth every day". - (Act V, Scene I).

Troilus and Cressida

"The common curse of mankind, - folly and ignorance". - (Act II, Scene III).


"Nature teaches beasts to know their friends". - (Act II, Scene I).



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