For your brother and my sister no sooner
met, but they looked; no sooner looked, but they
loved; no sooner loved, but they sighed; no sooner
sighed, but they asked one another the reason; no
sooner knew the reason but they sought the remedy.
—Rosalind in As You Like It
Lord, what fools these mortals be!
—Puck in A Midsummer Night’s Dream
Sigh no more, ladies, sigh no more,
Men were deceivers ever;
One foot in sea, and one on shore,
To one thing constant never.
—Balthazar in Much Ado About Nothing
I do love nothing in the world so well as you: is not that strange?
—Benedick in Much Ado About Nothing
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.
—Cassius in Julius Caesar
Action is eloquence.
—Volumnia in Coriolanus
The miserable have no other medicine, but only hope.
—Claudio in Measure for Measure
Time shall unfold what plighted cunning hides:
Who cover faults, at last shame them derides.
—Cordelia in King Lear
Swear not by the moon, the inconstant moon,
That monthly changes in her circled orb,
Lest that thy love prove likewise variable.
—Juliet in Romeo and Juliet
The more pity that fools may not speak wisely what wise men do foolishly.
—Touchstone in As You Like It
The robb’d that smiles, steals something from the thief.
—Duke of Venice in Othello
But thy eternal summer shall not fade,
Nor lose possession of that fair thou ow’st,
Nor shall death brag thou wander’st in his shade,
When in eternal lines to time thou grow’st,
So long as men can breathe, or eyes can see,
So long lives this, and this gives life to thee.
—from Sonnet 8
Give every man thy ear, but few thy voice.
—Polonius in Hamlet
They have been at a great feast of languages, and stol’n the scraps.
—Moth in Love’s Labor’s Lost
I would give all my fame for a pot of ale, and safety.
—Boy in Henry V