15 Of The Best Lesser-Known Shakespeare Lines
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15 Of The Best Lesser-Known Shakespeare Lines

We've all heard "To be or not to be" countless times...but what about Shakespeare's other great lines?

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15 Of The Best Lesser-Known Shakespeare Lines
The Huffington Post

There are lots of Shakespeare quotes that are thrown around constantly, such as "To be or not to be...that is the question" (Hamlet) or, "What light through yonder window breaks?" (Romeo and Juliet) or, "Lord, what fools these mortals be!" (A Midsummer Night's Dream). However, within Shakespeare's classic plays, there are many other wonderful quotes that aren't voiced nearly as often as I think they deserve. Here are some of the ones I found in some of Shakespeare's most famous plays:

15. "Aroint thee, witch, aroint thee." -King Lear

I love the word "aroint." It sounds like a word you would say when you're really fed up with someone. Also it's very satisfying to say. We should try to bring it back.

14. "Let me wipe it first, it smells of mortality." -King Lear

I just love this. A little context here: some guy asks to shake King Lear's hand, and this is how he responds. I really want to try this just to confuse someone/make them experience a sudden existential crisis.

13. “The more my prayer, the lesser is my grace.” -A Midsummer Night's Dream

Sometimes trying really hard to accomplish something can make you lose some of your dignity. This quote encapsulates that well.

12. "To be honest, as this world goes, is to be one man picked out of ten thousand.” -Hamlet

Too true. Honesty is a great quality, but often rare. There is an art to it, too: sometimes it's more tactful to be less than completely honest.

11. “One fairer than my love? The all-seeing sun / Ne'er saw her match since first the world begun.” -Romeo and Juliet

Ah, the heart melts upon hearing this line. It's cheesy, yes, but eloquently put and romantic.

10. "Out, vile jelly!" -King Lear

This line is shouted from a man while he is gouging out an eye. The eye is the "vile jelly". The humor of this line in such a dark situation is delicious.

9. “A man may fish with the worm that hath eat of a king, and eat of the fish that hath fed of that worm.” -Hamlet

It's the circle of lifffeeee.... and it moves us aallllll.... (Lion King, anyone?) Anyway, I like how thought-provoking this quote is.

8. "You are not worth the dust which the rude wind blows in your face." -King Lear

GET REKT. But seriously, this is such a great burn. To not just the woman this is said to, but also to the wind. Get rekt, "rude" wind.

7. “Come what come may, / Time and the hour runs through the roughest day.” -Macbeth

Again, this is thought-provoking. Also, quite relatable. I've experienced stressful days where time just relentlessly goes by even though I wish it would slow down for a bit. Ah, the relentless nature of time. Oh no, here comes an existential crisis.

6. “So full of artless jealousy is guilt, / It spills itself in fearing to be spilt.” -Hamlet

So true. When you feel guilty, you try so hard to cover it up that you reveal your guilt by doing so.

5. “What, you egg?” -Macbeth

AGAIN, GET REKT. SAVAGE AF. Go Macbeth. I want to try this retort out sometime. I'll let you know how it goes.

4. “And sleep, that sometime shuts up sorrow's eye, Steal me awhile from mine own company.” -A Midsummer Night's Dream

I think we've all been there: after a rough day, it's really nice to go to bed and just take a break from life for a bit.

3. "Tis an ill cook that cannot lick his own fingers.” -Romeo and Juliet

For sure. After baking cookies, it's one of life's great joys to lick cookie batter off your fingers.

2. “More matter with less art.” -Hamlet

Shakespeare knows what's up. This quote is so applicable, even today. For instance, it's all too common to see a movie with great special effects but no storyline.

1. "Is love a tender thing? It is too rough, too rude, too boisterous, and it pricks like thorn.” -Romeo and Juliet

I love this, because it's human nature to idealizes romance and love. In reality, though, love is difficult and loving someone contains a whole range of emotions, not just happiness and bliss.


I guess Shakespeare actually does deserve all the recognition he's gotten and continues to get. These aren't even his most famous lines, yet they still contain a lot of relatable messages. Go ahead and try some of them out on your friends. Especially "What, you egg?" and "Aroint thee." Just don't blame me for any consequences that result from saying them.




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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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