Reference > Quotations > Hoyt & Roberts, comps. > Hoyt’s New Cyclopedia of Practical Quotations
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Hoyt & Roberts, comps.  Hoyt’s New Cyclopedia of Practical Quotations.  1922.
 
Shakespeare
 
                This Booke
When Brasse and Marble fade, shall make thee looke
Fresh to all Ages.
        Commendatory Verses prefixed to the folio of Shakespeare. (1623).
  1
      This was Shakespeare’s form;
Who walked in every path of human life,
Felt every passion; and to all mankind
Doth now, will ever, that experience yield
Which his own genius only could acquire.
        Akenside—Inscription. IV.
  2
Others abide our question. Thou art free.
We ask and ask—Thou smilest and art still,
Out-topping knowledge.
        Matthew Arnold—Shakespeare.
  3
Renowned Spenser, lie a thought more nigh
To learned Chaucer, and rare Beaumont lie
A little nearer Spenser, to make room
For Shakespeare in your threefold, fourfold tomb.
        William Basse—On Shakespeare.
  4
There, Shakespeare, on whose forehead climb
The crowns o’ the world. Oh, eyes sublime
With tears and laughter for all time.
        E. B. Browning—A Vision of Poets.
  5
                “With this same key
Shakespeare unlocked his heart,” once more!
Did Shakespeare? If so, the less Shakespeare he!
        Robert Browning—House. X.
  6
  If I say that Shakespeare is the greatest of intellects, I have said all concerning him. But there is more in Shakespeare’s intellect than we have yet seen. It is what I call an unconscious intellect; there is more virtue in it than he himself is aware of.
        Carlyle—Essays. Characteristics of Shakespeare.
  7
Voltaire and Shakespeare! He was all
    The other feigned to be.
The flippant Frenchman speaks: I weep;
    And Shakespeare weeps with me.
        Matthias Claudius—A Comparison.
  8
Our myriad-minded Shakespeare.
        Coleridge—Biographia Literaria. Ch. XV. Borrowed from a Greek monk who applied it to a Patriarch of Constantinople.
  9
        When great poets sing,
Into the night new constellations spring,
With music in the air that dulls the craft
Of rhetoric. So when Shakespeare sang or laughed
The world with long, sweet Alpine echoes thrilled
Voiceless to scholars’ tongues no muse had filled
With melody divine.
        C. P. Cranch—Shakespeare.
  10
But Shakespeare’s magic could not copied be;
Within that circle none durst walk but he.
        Dryden—The Tempest. Prologue.
  11
  The passages of Shakespeare that we most prize were never quoted until within this century.
        Emerson—Letters and Social Aims. Quotation and Originality.
  12
Nor sequent centuries could hit
Orbit and sum of Shakespeare’s wit.
        Emerson—May Day and Other Pieces. Solution. L. 39.
  13
  What point of morals, of manners, of economy, of philosophy, of religion, of taste, of the conduct of life, has he not settled? What mystery has he not signified his knowledge of? What office, or function, or district of man’s work, has he not remembered? What king has he not taught state, as Talma taught Napoleon? What maiden has not found him finer than her delicacy? What lover has he not outloved? What sage has he not outseen? What gentleman has he not instructed in the rudeness of his behavior?
        Emerson—Representative Men. Shakespeare.
  14
Now you who rhyme, and I who rhyme,
Have not we sworn it, many a time,
That we no more our verse would scrawl,
For Shakespeare he had said it all!
        R. W. Gilder—The Modern Rhymer.
  15
  If we wish to know the force of human genius we should read Shakespeare. If we wish to see the insignificance of human learning we may study his commentators.
        Hazlitt—Table Talk. On the Ignorance of the Learned.
  16
Mellifluous Shakespeare, whose enchanting Quill
Commandeth Mirth or Passion, was but Will.
        Thomas Heywood—Hierarchie of the Blessed Angels.
  17
  The stream of Time, which is continually washing the dissoluble fabrics of other poets, passes without injury by the adamant of Shakspere.
        Samuel Johnson—Preface to Works of Shakspere.
  18
  I remember, the players have often mentioned it as an honour to Shakespeare, that in his writing (whatsoever he penned) he never blotted out a line. My answer hath been, would he had blotted a thousand.
        Ben Jonson—Discoveries. De Shakespeare nostrat.
  19
This figure that thou here seest put,
It was for gentle Shakespeare cut,
Wherein the graver had a strife
With Nature, to outdo the life:
Oh, could he but have drawn his wit
As well in brass, as he has hit
His face, the print would then surpass
All that was ever writ in brass;
But since he cannot, reader, look
Not on his picture, but his book.
        Ben Jonson—Lines on a Picture of Shakespeare.
  20
 
 
He was not of an age, but for all time!
And all the Muses still were in their prime,
When, like Apollo, he came forth to warm
Our ears, or like a Mercury to charm!
        Ben Jonson—Lines to the Memory of Shakespeare.
  21
Nature herself was proud of his designs,
And joyed to wear the dressing of his lines!
Which were so richly spun, and woven so fit,
As since, she will vouchsafe no other wit.
        Ben Jonson—Lines to the Memory of Shakespeare.
  22
                Soul of the Age!
The applause! delight! the wonder of our stage!
My Shakespeare rise! I will not lodge thee by
Chaucer, or Spenser, or bid Beaumont lie
A little further off, to make thee room:
Thou art a monument without a tomb,
And art alive still, while thy book doth live
And we have wits to read, and praise to give.
        Ben Jonson—Lines to the Memory of Shakespeare.
  23
Sweet Swan of Avon! What a sight it were
To see thee in our water yet appear.
        Ben Jonson—Lines to the Memory of Shakespeare.
  24
For a good poet’s made, as well as born,
And such wast thou! Look how the father’s face
Lives in his issue; even so the race
Of Shakespeare’s mind and manners brightly shine
In his well-turned and true-filèd lines;
In each of which he seems to shake a lance,
As brandished at the eyes of ignorance.
        Ben Jonson—Lines to the Memory of Shakespeare.
  25
Thou hadst small Latin and less Greek.
        Ben Jonson—Lines to the Memory of Shakespeare.
  26
Shakespeare is not our poet, but the world’s,
Therefore on him no speech!
        Walter Savage Landor—To Robert Browning. L. 5.
  27
Then to the well-trod stage anon
If Jonson’s learned sock be on,
Or sweetest Shakespeare, Fancy’s child,
Warble his native woodnotes wild.
        MiltonL’Allegro. L. 131.
  28
What needs my Shakespeare for his honored bones
The labors of an age in piled stones?
Or that his hallowed reliques should be hid
Under a starre-y-pointing pyramid?
Dear son of Memory, great heir of fame,
What need’st thou such weak witness of thy name?
Thou in our wonder and astonishment
Hath built thyself a livelong monument.
        MiltonAn Epitaph. Similar phrases in the entire epitaph are found in the epitaph on Sir Thomas Stanley, supposed to have been written by Shakespeare. Also, same ideas found in Crashaw.
  29
Shakspeare (whom you and every playhouse bill
Style the divine! the matchless! what you will),
For gain, not glory, wing’d his roving flight,
And grew immortal in his own despite.
        Pope—Imitations of Horace. Ep. I. Bk. II. L. 69.
  30
  Few of the university pen plaies well, they smell too much of that writer Ovid and that writer Metamorphosis and talk too much of Proserpina and Jupiter. Why, here’s our fellow Shakespeare puts them all down. Aye, and Ben Jonson too. O that B. J. is a pestilent fellow, he brought up Horace giving the poets a pill, but our fellow, Shakespeare, hath given him a purge that made him beray his credit.
        The Return from Parnassus; or, the Scourge of Simony. Act IV. Sc. 3.
  31
Shikspur, Shikspur! Who wrote it?
No, I never read Shikspur.
Then you have an immense pleasure to come.
        James Townley—High Life Below Stairs. Act II. Sc. 1. (Ed. 1759).
  32
Scorn not the Sonnet. Critic, you have frowned,
Mindless of its just honours; with this key
Shakespeare unlocked his heart.
        WordsworthScorn not the Sonnet.
  33
 
 
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