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Shakespeare quotes page

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors ACT/SCENE: 2.2 SPEAKER: Antipholus of Syracuse CONTEXT: ADRIANA
Come, come, no longer will I be a fool,
To put the finger in the eye and weep
Whilst man and master laugh my woes to scorn.
Come, sir, to dinner.—Dromio, keep the gate. —
Husband, I’ll dine above with you today,
And shrive you of a thousand idle pranks.
Sirrah, if any ask you for your master,
Say he dines forth, and let no creature enter.—
Come, sister.—Dromio, play the porter well.
Am I in earth, in heaven, or in hell?
Sleeping or waking, mad or well-advised?
Known unto these, and to myself disguised!
I’ll say as they say, and persever so,
And in this mist at all adventures go. DUTCH: Wat is het, hemel, hel of aarde, hier?
Slaap, waak ik? Ben ik wijs of buiten west?
Ik ken mijzelven niet en zij mij best.
MORE: Proverb: To put finger in the eye (force tears, generate sympathy)

Well-advised=In my right mind
To shrive=To hear confession and absolve (between condemnation and execution of punishment – origin of short shrift (korte metten))
At all adventures=Whatever the risk, consequences

To shrive=Biechten
At all adventures=Laat komen wat wil, ‘t gaa hoe ‘t gaa Topics: imagination, evidence, judgment, reason, risk, proverbs and idioms

PLAY: King Henry VI Part 3
SPEAKER: Gloucester
Now, brother Richard, Lord Hastings, and the rest,
Yet thus far fortune maketh us amends,
And says that once more I shall interchange
My waned state for Henry’s regal crown.
Well have we pass’d and now repass’d the seas
And brought desired help from Burgundy:
What then remains, we being thus arrived
From Ravenspurgh haven before the gates of York,
But that we enter, as into our dukedom?
The gates made fast! Brother, I like not this
For many men that stumble at the threshold
Are well foretold that danger lurks within.

De poort gesloten! Dit bevalt mij niet;
Voor menigeen is struik’len aan den drempel
Een teeken van ‘t gevaar, dat binnen loert.


Proverb: To stumble at the threshold

Make amends=Atone, compensate
Waned state=Decline, dimnished circumstances
Are well foretold=Have an omen

To make amends=Vergoeding doen, vergoeden
To interchange=Verwisselen, beurt houden
In the wane=Afneemende, afgaande
Foretold=Voorzegd, voorzeid

Topics: proverbs and idioms, invented or popularised, caution, risk, wisdom

PLAY: Romeo and Juliet
By love, that first did prompt me to inquire.
He lent me counsel and I lent him eyes.
I am no pilot. Yet, wert thou as far
As that vast shore washed with the farthest sea,
I would adventure for such merchandise.

Ik ben geen zeeman, maar, waart ge ook zoo ver
Als de oever, door de verste zee bespoeld,
Ik waagde toch de vaart voor zulk gewin.

Adventure=Hazard, chance, risk; hazardous and striking enterprise

Topics: love, courage, risk

PLAY: Macbeth
SPEAKER: Macbeth
If it were done when ’tis done, then ’twere well
It were done quickly. If th’ assassination
Could trammel up the consequence, and catch
With his surcease, success: that but this blow
Might be the be-all and the end-all

Ware ‘t gedaan, als ‘t is gedaan, dan waar’
Het goed, zoo ‘t ras gedaan werd

Allusion to the proverb “The thing done has an end” (c1380). Also Chaucer, “But that is don, is not to be done” (c1380).
Be-all and end-all (OED hyphenates)=the whole thing, perfection, ultimate goal.
Trammel up= To tie up or net up (a trammel is both a kind of draw net and a contrivance for teaching horses to pace or amble).
Tramel=Zekere slach van een vischnet
Trammel=Een beugel

Topics: offence, death, consequence, achievement, risk

PLAY: The Comedy of Errors
SPEAKER: Dromio of Syracuse
It is the devil.
Nay, she is worse; she is the devil’s dam, and here she comes in the habit of a light wench. And thereof comes that the wenches say “God damn me” that’s as much to say “God make me a light wench.” It is written they appear to men like angels of light. Light is an effect of fire, and fire will burn: ergo, light wenches will burn. Come not near her.
Your man and you are marvellous merry, sir.
Will you go with me? We’ll mend our dinner here.
Master, if you do, expect spoon meat; or bespeak a long spoon.
Why, Dromio?
Marry, he must have a long spoon that must eat with the devil.

Daar staat geschreven, dat zij aan mannen zich voordoen als licht; Iicht is een uitwerksel van vuur, en vuur verzengt en steekt aan; dus, lichte deernen steken aan. Kom haar niet te na.

Proverb: The devil and his dam
Proverb: The devil can transform himself into an angel of light
Proverb: He who sups with the devil should have a long spoon

Devil’s dam=The devil’s mother
Mend=To set right, to correct, to repair what is amiss
Spoon-meat=Meat for toddlers or invalids
Bespeak=Order, reserve, engage


Topics: proverbs and idioms, still in use, caution, good and mad, risk

PLAY: The Merchant of Venice
SPEAKER: Antonio
Believe me, no. I thank my fortune for it—
My ventures are not in one bottom trusted,
Nor to one place, nor is my whole estate
Upon the fortune of this present year.
therefore my merchandise makes me not sad.

Geloof mij, neen, want, dank zij mijn geluk,
Ik heb mijn goed niet aan een schip vertrouwd,
Niet aan een plaats, en mijn vermogen hangt

Proverb: Venture not all in one bottom
Merchandise=trade, business.
Bottom=Een Schip
Merchandize=Koopmanschappen, koopmanschap doen, dingen
Merchantly=Als een koopman

Topics: emotion and mood, misquoted

PLAY: King Henry VI Part 1
SPEAKER: Lord Talbot
Here, purposing the Bastard to destroy,
Came in strong rescue. Speak, thy father’s care,
Art thou not weary, John? how dost thou fare?
Wilt thou yet leave the battle, boy, and fly,
Now thou art seal’d the son of chivalry?
Fly, to revenge my death when I am dead:
The help of one stands me in little stead.
O, too much folly is it, well I wot,
To hazard all our lives in one small boat!
If I to-day die not with Frenchmen’s rage,
To-morrow I shall die with mickle age:
By me they nothing gain an if I stay;
‘Tis but the shortening of my life one day:
In thee thy mother dies, our household’s name,
My death’s revenge, thy youth, and England’s fame:
All these and more we hazard by thy stay;
All these are saved if thou wilt fly away.

Voorwaar, ‘t zou dwaasheid zijn, ons aller leven
In éene kleine boot nu prijs te geven.

Proverb: Venture not all in one bottom

Stands me in little stead=Is of little use to me

To purpose=Voorneemen, voorhebben
Sealed=Gezegeld, verzegeld
To stand in stead=Dienstig zijn, baatig
I wot=Ik weet
Mickle=Veel, een woord dat in ‘t Noorden van Engeland zeer gemeen is
Many a little makes a mickle=Veele kleintjes maaken een groot
House=(family) Huisgezin

Topics: risk, fate/destiny, caution

PLAY: King Henry VIII
SPEAKER: Cardinal Wolsey
First, it was usual with him, every day
It would infect his speech, that if the king
Should without issue die, he’ll carry it so
To make the sceptre his: these very words
I’ve heard him utter to his son-in-law,
Lord Abergavenny; to whom by oath he menaced
Revenge upon the cardinal.
Please your highness, note
This dangerous conception in this point.
Not friended by his wish, to your high person
His will is most malignant; and it stretches
Beyond you, to your friends.

Gelieve uw hoogheid al ‘t gevaar te erkennen,
Dat die gezindheid brengen kan.

Carry=Carry out, arrange
Conception=Plan, idea
To carry=Draagen, voeren, brengen; aanstellen
To carry it=De overhand behouden, iets doorhaalen, overhaalen

Topics: advantage/benefit, revenge, risk

PLAY: Cymbeline
SPEAKER: Iachimo
You may wear her in title yours, but you
Know strange fowl light upon neighbouring ponds.
Your ring may be stolen too. So your brace of unprizable
Estimations, the one is but frail and the other casual.
A cunning thief or a that way accomplished courtier
Would hazard the winning both of first and last.

Ook uw ring kan u gestolen worden;
en zoo is van uwe twee onwaardeerbare schatten de een
slechts zwak, de ander verliesbaar; een geslepen dief of
een in dit opzicht uitgeleerd hoveling kunnen het wagen
u zoowel den een’ als den anderen te ontfutselen.

In title=As in title to an estate
So=In such a manner, thus
Unprizable=Invaluable, inestimable
Casual=Accidental, by chance
Frail=Weak, in a physical as well as moral sense
Hazard=To venture, to risk, take a bet on

Title=Recht, eisch
He has no good title to it=Hy heeft geen goed recht daar toe
Title=Papieren, geschriften om zyn recht to bewyzen
Hazard=Waagen, aventuuren, in de waagschaal stellen
Casual=Gevallig, toevallig

Topics: loyalty, betrayal, value, risk

PLAY: King Henry IV Part 1
SPEAKER: Falstaff
Counterfeit? I lie. I am no counterfeit. To die is to be a counterfeit, for he is but the counterfeit of a man who hath not the life of a man; but to counterfeit dying when a man thereby liveth is to be no counterfeit, but the true and perfect image of life indeed. The better part of valor is discretion, in the which better part I have saved my life. Zounds, I am afraid of this gunpowder Percy, though he be dead. How if he should counterfeit too and rise? By my faith, I am afraid he would prove the better counterfeit.

Het beste deel van moed is voorzichtigheid./ Het betere deel van de dapperheid is voorzichtigheid.

Frequently misquoted, or rearranged, as “Discretion is the better part of valour”.

Topics: misquoted, proverbs and idioms, risk, courage, caution

PLAY: King Henry IV Part 1
SPEAKER: Hotspur
The purpose you undertake is dangerous. Why, that’s certain. ‘Tis dangerous to take a cold, to sleep, to drink; but I tell you, my lord fool, out of this nettle, danger, we pluck this flower, safety. The purpose you undertake is dangerous, the friends you have named uncertain, the time itself unsorted, and your whole plot too light for the counterpoise of so great an opposition.

De onderneming, die gij op touw zet, is gevaarlijk; de vrienden, die gij noemt, zijn onzeker; de tijd zelf is slecht gekozen en geheel uw plan te licht voor het tegenwicht van zulk een grooten wederstand.

Purpose=That which a person intends to do, design, plan, project
Nettle=Netel, brandnetel
To nettle=Branden of steeken als netelen, quellen, ontrusten, onthutselen, plaagen

Topics: purpose, courage, plans/intentions, risk

PLAY: Coriolanus
SPEAKER: Volumnia
The end of war’s uncertain, but this certain,
That, if thou conquer Rome, the benefit
Which thou shalt thereby reap is such a name,
Whose repetition will be dogg’d with curses;
Whose chronicle thus writ: ‘The man was noble,
But with his last attempt he wiped it out;
Destroy’d his country, and his name remains
To the ensuing age abhorr’d.’ Speak to me, son:
Thou hast affected the fine strains of honour,
To imitate the graces of the gods;
To tear with thunder the wide cheeks o’ the air,
And yet to charge thy sulphur with a bolt
That should but rive an oak. Why dost not speak?
Think’st thou it honourable for a noble man
Still to remember wrongs? Daughter, speak you:
He cares not for your weeping. Speak thou, boy:
Perhaps thy childishness will move him more
Than can our reasons. There’s no man in the world
More bound to ’s mother; yet here he lets me prate
Like one i’ the stocks. Thou hast never in thy life
Show’d thy dear mother any courtesy,
When she, poor hen, fond of no second brood,
Has cluck’d thee to the wars and safely home,
Loaden with honour. Say my request’s unjust,
And spurn me back: but if it be not so,
Thou art not honest; and the gods will plague thee,
That thou restrain’st from me the duty which
To a mother’s part belongs. He turns away:
Down, ladies; let us shame him with our knees.
To his surname Coriolanus ’longs more pride
Than pity to our prayers. Down: an end;
This is the last: so we will home to Rome,
And die among our neighbours. Nay, behold ’s:
This boy, that cannot tell what he would have
But kneels and holds up hands for fellowship,
Does reason our petition with more strength
Than thou hast to deny ’t. Come, let us go:
This fellow had a Volscian to his mother;
His wife is in Corioli and his child
Like him by chance. Yet give us our dispatch:
I am hush’d until our city be a-fire,
And then I’ll speak a little.

Die knaap, die niet kan zeggen wat hij wenscht,
Maar met ons meeknielt en de handen heft,
Bepleit ons smeekgebed met meerder kracht,
Dan gij tot weig’ren hebt!

Proverb: The chance of war is uncertain
Proverb: To forget a wrong is best revenge (remedy)

Restrain’st=Legal use: keep back, withhold. Among examples in the New Eng. Dict, is: “The rents, issues, and profites thereof [they] have wrongfully restreyned, perceyved, and taken to their owne use.”
An end=Let that be an end to it
Reason=Argue for, plead for
Dispatch=Decisive answer

Restrain (sting, limit or confine)=Bepaalen, kort houden
Restrain (repress or curb)=Fnuiken, beteugelen
To restrain one from a thing=Zich ergens van onthouden
To restrain a word to a signification=Een woord tot eene betekenis bekorten
Dispatch=Afvaardiging, verrichting, beschikking, vervaardiging
He is a man of quick dispatch=Het is een vaardig man

Topics: proverbs and idioms, conflict, reason, revenge, risk

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