The Chandos portrait, artist and authenticity unconfirmed. Courtesy of the National Portrait Gallery, London.
|Born||Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire, England|
|Baptised||26 April 1564|
|Died||23 April 1616 (aged 52)
Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire, England
|Resting place||Church of the Holy Trinity, Stratford-upon-Avon|
|Occupation||Playwright, poet, actor|
|Spouse(s)||Anne Hathaway (m. 1582â€“1616)|
O thou invisible spirit of wine, if thou hast no name to be known by, let us call thee devil.
Children wish fathers looked but with their eyes; fathers that children with their judgment looked; and either may be wrong.
Fishes live in the sea, as men do a-land; the great ones eat up the little ones.
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.
Maids want nothing but husbands, and when they have them, they want everything.
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.
I hold the world but as the world, Gratiano; A stage where every man must play a part, And mine is a sad one.
Truly, I would not hang a dog by my will, much more a man who hath any honesty in him.
When a father gives to his son, both laugh; when a son gives to his father, both cry.
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.
And oftentimes excusing of a fault doth make the fault the worse by the excuse.
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.
Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them.
But O, how bitter a thing it is to look into happiness through another man's eyes.
The evil that men do lives after them; the good is oft interred with their bones.
'Tis better to bear the ills we have than fly to others that we know not of.
O! Let me not be mad, not mad, sweet heaven; keep me in temper; I would not be mad!
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.
This life, which had been the tomb of his virtue and of his honour, is 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.
What's in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.
O! for a muse of fire, that would ascend the brightest heaven of invention.
And this, our life, exempt from public haunt, finds tongues in trees, books in the running brooks, sermons in stones, and good in everything.
I had rather have a fool to make me merry than experience to make me sad and to travel for it too!
How poor are they that have not patience! What wound did ever heal but by degrees?
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?
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.
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.
Teach not thy lip such scorn, for it was made For kissing, lady, not for such contempt.
Faith, there hath been many great men that have flattered the people who ne'er loved them.
I were better to be eaten to death with a rust than to be scoured to nothing with perpetual motion.
Sweet are the uses of adversity which, like the toad, ugly and venomous, wears yet a precious jewel in his head.
Good night, good night! Parting is such sweet sorrow, that I shall say good night till it be morrow.
A fool thinks himself to be wise, but a wise man knows himself to be a fool.
If you can look into the seeds of time, and say which grain will grow and which will not, speak then unto me.
The man that hath no music in himself, Nor is not moved with concord of sweet sounds, is fit for treasons, stratagems and spoils.
Cowards die many times before their deaths; the valiant never taste of death but once.
A peace is of the nature of a conquest; for then both parties nobly are subdued, and neither party loser.
Like as the waves make towards the pebbl'd shore, so do our minutes, hasten to their end.
How far that little candle throws its beams! So shines a good deed in a naughty world.
Doubt thou the stars are fire, Doubt that the sun doth move. Doubt truth to be a liar, But never doubt I love.
Life is as tedious as twice-told tale, vexing the dull ear of a drowsy man.
Reputation is an idle and most false imposition; oft got without merit, and lost without deserving.
Who could refrain that had a heart to love and in that heart courage to make love known?
As soon go kindle fire with snow, as seek to quench the fire of love with words.
To thine own self be true, and it must follow, as the night the day, thou canst not then be false to any man.
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 have been many great men that have flattered the people who ne'er loved them.
Life every man holds dear; but the dear man holds honor far more precious dear than life.
Thou know'st the first time that we smell the air we wawl and cry. When we are born we cry, that we are come to this great state of fools.
Let me embrace thee, sour adversity, for wise men say it is the wisest course.
Ignorance is the curse of God; knowledge is the wing wherewith we fly to heaven.
Our doubts are traitors and make us lose the good we oft might win by fearing to attempt.
O God, O God, how weary, stale, flat, and unprofitable seem to me all the uses of this world!
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.
We are such stuff as dreams are made on; and our little life is rounded with a sleep.
Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind, And therefore is winged Cupid painted blind.
Now, God be praised, that to believing souls gives light in darkness, comfort in despair.
Most dangerous is that temptation that doth goad us on to sin in loving virtue.
Talking isn't doing. It is a kind of good deed to say well; and yet words are not deeds.
And why not death rather than living torment? To die is to be banish'd from myself; And Silvia is myself: banish'd from her Is self from self: a deadly banishment!