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Shakespeare Quotes

William Shakespeare (1564-1616) "The Bard (Poet) of Avon" was an English poet, dramatist, and actor, widely regarded as the greatest writer of the English language. shakepeare

After attending grammar school, where he learned Latin, history and poetry, instead of going on to university, he married Anne Hathaway at the tender age of 18. They had three children Susanna, and twins Judith and Hamnet. Hamnet, his only son and heir, died at the age of eleven.

shakepeare masksShakespeare wrote approximately 38 plays, 154 sonnets and a variety of many other poems all within the span of twenty years.

These quotes I have compiled from his works demonstrate his philosophical depth and profound insight into human nature. Within them we can learn much about ourselves, life and the human condition.

On the Self

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.

Be great in act, as you have been in thought.

This above all; to thine own self be true, and it must follow, as the night the day, thou canst not then be false to any man.

Who knows himself a braggart,
Let him fear this; for it will come to pass
That every braggart shall be found an ass.

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.

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

We know what we are, but know not what we may be.

It is the mind that makes the body rich.

Our doubts are traitors,
And make us lose the good we oft might win
By fearing to attempt.

Advice on Life and Virtue

Better three hours too soon than a minute too late.

Brevity is the soul of wit.

Love all, trust a few. Do wrong to none.

Cowards die many times before their deaths; the valiant never taste of death but once.

Everyone ought to bear patiently the results of his own conduct.

Expectation is the root of all heartache.

Give every man thy ear, but few thy voice.

How poor are they that have not patience! What wound did ever heal but by degrees?

Ignorance is the curse of God; knowledge is the wing wherewith we fly to heaven.

No legacy is so rich as honesty.

Beauty is all very well at first sight; but whoever looks at it when it has been in the house three days?

Kindness in women, not their beauteous looks, shall win my love.

There is nothing either good or bad but thinking makes it so.

The better part of valour is discretion.

Modest doubt is called the beacon of the wise.

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...

Assume a virtue if you have it not.

When we are born we cry that we are come to this great stage of fools.

Truth is truth to the end of reckoning.

Reputation is an idle and most false imposition; oft got without merit, and lost without deserving.

Virtue is bold, and goodness never fearful.

Kindness, nobler ever than revenge.

The web of our life is of a mingled yarn, good and ill together.

Be not too tame neither, but let your own discretion be your tutor: suit the action to the word, the word to the action...

Suspicion always haunts the guilty mind;
The thief doth fear each bush an officer.

Fight till the last gasp.

All that lives must die, passing through nature to eternity.

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