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Top 50 Famous Quotes from Shakespeare

William Shakespeare, the legendary playwright and poet, has left an indelible mark on literature and language. His works, brimming with profound wisdom, wit, and emotion, continue to captivate audiences centuries after they were written. From the philosophical musings of Hamlet to the romantic declarations of Romeo and Juliet, Shakespeare’s quotes transcend time, offering timeless insights into the human condition. In this compilation, we delve into 50 of his most iconic quotes, each a testament to his genius and enduring influence. Prepare to be inspired, amused, and moved by the Bard’s unparalleled mastery of words.

Shakespeare Quotes About Love
Shakespeare’s characters may not always make the most logical decisions about love, but he made sure they knew how to express and discuss it. These quotes express both sensitive and sometimes harsh universal truths about love.

“Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind, and therefore is winged Cupid painted blind.” – A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Act 1, Scene 1

“My bounty is as boundless as the sea, My love as deep; the more I give to thee, The more I have, for both are infinite.” – Romeo and Juliet, Act 2, Scene 2

“One half of me is yours, the other half yours— Mine own, I would say; but if mine, then yours, And so all yours!” – The Merchant of Venice, Act 3, Scene 2

“My love is thine to teach. Teach it but how, And thou shalt see how apt it is to learn Any hard lesson that may do thee good.” – The Two Gentlemen of Verona, Act 1, Scene 3

“Love is a smoke made with the fume of sighs; Being purged, a fire sparkling in lovers’ eyes; Being vexed, a sea nourished with lovers’ tears.” – Romeo and Juliet, Act 1, Scene 1

“There’s beggary in the love that can be reckoned.” – Antony and Cleopatra, Act 1, scene 1

“When you depart from me, sorrow abides and happiness takes his leave.” – Much Ado About Nothing, Act 1, scene 1

“If music be the food of love, play on. Give me excess of it, that, surfeiting, The appetite may sicken and so die.” – Twelfth Night, Act 1, scene 1
“She loved me for the dangers I had passed, And I loved her that she did pity them” – Othello, Act 1, Scene 3

“You have witchcraft in your lips.” – Henry V, Act 5, Scene 2

Shakespeare Quotes about Time
Even in short lines and fast transitions, Shakespeare made startling and thought-provoking observations about the nature of time. Though it appears that humans are determined to defy time, Shakespeare often returns to themes of its inevitability and ability to mold our psyche, for better or worse.

“Tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow, Creeps in this petty pace from day to day, To the last syllable of recorded time.” – Macbeth, Act 5, Scene 5

“Defer no time, delays have dangerous ends.” – Henry VI, Part 1, Act 3, Scene 2

“Better three hours too soon than a minute too late.” – The Merry Wives of Windsor, Act 2, Scene 2

“And thus the whirligig of time brings in his revenges.” – Twelfth Night, Act 5, Scene 1

“Time’s the king of men; he’s both their parent, and he is their grave, and gives them what he will, not what they crave.” – Pericles, Prince of Tyre, Act 2, Scene 3

“The time of life is short; To spend that shortness basely were too long.” – Henry IV, Part 1, Act 5, Scene 2

“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.” – Julius Caesar, Act 2, Scene 2

“I wasted time, and now doth time waste me.” – Richard II, Act 5, Scene 5

“Many a man his life hath sold but my outside to behold. Gilded tombs do worms enfold.” – The Merchant of Venice, Act 2, Scene 7

“Time is the justice that examines all offenders.” –As You Like It, Act 4, Scene 1

Shakespeare Quotes About Life
Shakespeare had much to say about life, including its nature, purpose, and hazards. He regularly reflected on what it meant to live a good life, how to strive to do so, and whether it was all worthwhile in the end.

“The better part of Valour, is Discretion; in the which better part, I have saved my life.” – Henry IV, Part 1, Act 5, Scene 4

“Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player that struts and frets his hour upon the stage and then is heard no more.” – Macbeth, Act 5, Scene 5

“We are such stuff as dreams are made on, and our little life is rounded with a sleep.” – The Tempest, Act 4, Scene 1

“Cowards die many times before their deaths; The valiant never taste of death but once.” – Julius Caesar, Act 2, Scene 2

“When we are born, we cry that we are come to this great stage of fools.” – King Lear, Act 4, Scene 6

“Our revels now are ended. These our actors, As I foretold you, were all spirits and are melted into air, into thin air.” – The Tempest, Act 4, Scene 1

“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 You Like It, Act 2, Scene 1

“We know what we are, but know not what we may be.” –Hamlet, Act 4, Scene 5

“Things won are done; joy’s soul lies in the doing.” – Troilus and Cressida, Act 1, Scene 2.

“Life is as tedious as a twice-told tale, vexing the dull ear of a drowsy man.” – King John, Act 3, Scene 4.

“The web of our life is of a mingled yarn, good and ill together.” – All’s Well That Ends Well, Act 4, Scene 3

“The wheel is come full circle: I am here.” – King Lear, Act 5, Scene 3

“There is a tide in the affairs of men, which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune.” – Julius Caesar, Act 4, Scene 3

“Life every man holds dear; but the brave man holds honor far more precious-dear than life.” – Troilus and Cressida, Act 3, Scene 3.

Shakespeare Quotes About Revenge
Shakespeare’s exploration of revenge in his works delves deep into the complexities of human nature and the consequences of seeking vengeance. Here are some of his most powerful quotes on this enduring theme.

“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?” – The Merchant of Venice, Act 3, Scene 1

“Revenge is a kind of wild justice, which the more a man’s nature runs to, the more ought law to weed it out.” – The Tempest, Act 5, Scene 1

“Villain, I have done thy mother.” – Titus Andronicus, Act 4, Scene 2

“He that doth the ravens feed, yea, providently caters for the sparrow, be comfort to my age! Here is the gold; all this I give you. Let me be your servant. Though I look old, yet I am strong and lusty. For in my youth I never did apply hot and rebellious liquors in my blood, nor did with unbashful forehead woo the means of weakness and debility. Therefore my age is as a lusty winter, frosty but kindly.” – King Lear, Act 4, Scene 6

“To be or not to be: that is the question: Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, Or to take arms against a sea of troubles, And by opposing end them? To die: to sleep.” – Hamlet, Act 3, Scene 1

“The evil that men do lives after them; The good is oft interred with their bones.” Julius Caesar, Act 3, Scene 2

“To bait fish withal. If it will feed nothing else, it will feed my revenge.” – The Merchant of Venice, Act 3, Scene 1

“O, that way madness lies; let me shun that; No more of that.” – King Lear, Act 3, Scene 4

“My cue is villainous melancholy, with a sigh like Tom o’ Bedlam.” – Othello, Act 3, Scene 3

“My heart laments that virtue cannot live Out of the teeth of emulation.” – Henry VIII, Act 3, Scene 2

“Revenge should have no bounds.” – Hamlet, Act 4, Scene 7

“Tempt not a desperate man.” – Romeo and Juliet, Act 5, Scene 3

“Revenge his foul and most unnatural murder.” – Hamlet, Act 1, Scene 5

“Vengeance is in my heart, death in my hand, Blood and revenge are hammering in my head.” – Titus Andronicus, Act 2, Scene 3.

“If it will feed nothing else, it will feed my revenge.” – The Merchant of Venice, Act 3, Scene 1.

“How all occasions do inform against me, And spur my dull revenge! What is a man, If his chief good and market of his time Be but to sleep and feed? A beast, no more.” – Hamlet, Act 4, Scene 4

Frequently Asked Questions About Top 50 Famous Quotes from Shakespeare
Why are Shakespeare’s quotes so famous?
Shakespeare’s quotes are famous because they capture timeless human emotions, experiences, and truths. His eloquent language, profound insights, and the universal themes in his works resonate across different cultures and eras.

What are some of the most famous Shakespeare quotes?
Some of the most famous quotes include:
“To be, or not to be: that is the question” (Hamlet)
“All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players” (As You Like It)
“Romeo, Romeo! Wherefore art thou Romeo?” (Romeo and Juliet)
“The better part of Valour, is Discretion” (Henry IV, Part 1)

What does “To be, or not to be” mean?
This quote from Hamlet reflects the protagonist’s existential crisis and contemplation of life and death. Hamlet questions whether it is better to endure life’s hardships or to end his suffering through death.

What does “Romeo, Romeo! Wherefore art thou Romeo?” mean?
In this quote from “Romeo and Juliet,” Juliet is lamenting Romeo’s name, asking why he must be “Romeo,” a Montague, and thus an enemy to her family, the Capulets. “Wherefore” means “why.”

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