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  1. Will
    Will at |

    How did “Now is the winter of our discontent” miss the cut?

    Reply
  2. Nikkos
    Nikkos at |

    This is a great website, otherwise! 🙂

    Reply
  3. Nikkos
    Nikkos at |

    (Never mind my comment about “Wherefore art thou”. I didn’t look at the entire website first. Sorry.)

    Reply
  4. Nikkos
    Nikkos at |

    As for “to thine own self be true”, yes, Laertes should roll his eyes, but partly because his father is going on and on, but also because he is a typical young man. Shakespeare knew this, and knew that often fathers dish out more advice then needed. But what came first, the cliches or did Shakespeare coin the phrases? Was Shakespeare actually passionate about the relationship between a father and a son, or lack of, in this point? Couldn’t have been that Hamlet wished his father was around to give such advice, and even beyond that, advice of how to frame his Uncle? So, therefore, is this line actually misunderstood, or more misused?

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  5. Nikkos
    Nikkos at |

    I agree that the Lewis Carol line is misunderstood, but not for the reason that you claimed it be misunderstood for. Yes, there is a sense of sarcasm in the Duchess’s voice, however, it should be obvious that she is sarcastic to the reader. I think what is misunderstood is that love is indeed that actual focus of this part of “The Mock Turtle’s Story”. But rather the focus concerns a sense of order in the world, which then, in turn, falls back to your valid point of mathematics. Love, therefore, is a red herring. And perhaps those who quote this quote, might actually be using it in a sarcastic sense, and yet others do actually misunderstood the meaning. But, as I said, love is not the main focus of this section of the story. Lewis Carol loved children, and also used his college and the surrounding town as part influence to his work.

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  6. Nikkos
    Nikkos at |

    Also, with “Romeo and Juliet”, “Wherefore thou art” is very misunderstood. Not meaning, where are you, but, why are you. Perhaps this should replace the “Frost” quote. Again, just a thought.

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  7. Nikkos
    Nikkos at |

    I don’t agree that “The Road Not Taken” is misunderstood due to your proof found in the second stanza.
    When examining the lines “Though as for that the passing there Had worn them really about the same” , one could also make an argument that, because the one path was “grassy and wanted wear”, the “equal wear” could mean the lack of wear. Since it is an unreliable narrator, we do not know if the narrator is the one who did not make the paths worn paths, of if society did not make the paths worn paths. If the narrator did not travel either path, then both paths were worn about the same, and this is in the sense that neither were traveled enough by the narrator for him to know which to take. But since one had more grass on it, it seemed to have called to the narrator more than the other. That is the counterpoint to your argument, and since there is this counterpoint, does that mean this poem has been misunderstood to begin with? Just a thought. (In addition to the argument about “regret” posted above.)

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  8. Jayney
    Jayney at |

    I would have added “To sleep, perchance to dream” from Hamlet to this list.

    So many times I have seen people quote this when saying goodnight, but I doubt they understand the true meaning.

    The whole soliloquy is about Hamlet’s contemplation of suicide, and the sleep to which he refers is death. He is then concerned that if he does kill himself and “sleep” he will be troubled by ongoing visions haunting him.

    Not quite the sleep and dreams that those using the phrase intend.

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    1. Nikkos
      Nikkos at |

      I absolutely agree with this!

      Reply
  9. kunal
    kunal at |

    one more to the list :-Friedrich Nietzsche – “And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music.” The above quote has got nothing to do with carefree dancing as much as it has to do with people who are gripped with passion n fervour n love n forget the nearby society n its stupid rules !!!

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    1. Walter
      Walter at |

      “as it has to do with people who are gripped with passion n fervour n love n forget the nearby society n its stupid rules !!!”
      And just look at the sad irony of those that misappropriated so much of his work.

      Reply
  10. Dennis
    Dennis at |

    When Ben franklin said,”time is money” he did not mean that “time” was literally money. That would be silly–Ben simply meant that if you buy a clock you will have to pay for it.

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  11. MB
    MB at |

    Shocked that with all the misused and misunderstood Shakespeare lines on here, “The world is my oyster…” doesn’t make an appearance.

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    1. TopTenz Master
      TopTenz Master at |

      Enlighten us, what is the misunderstanding?

      Reply
      1. MB
        MB at |

        The common usage of the phrase completely ignores the line that follows it:

        Falstaff:
        I will not lend thee a penny.

        Pistol:
        Why then the world’s mine oyster,
        Which I with sword will open.

        This is not some ambiguous sentiment; it is an overt and threatening one. Shakespeare chooses the image of the oyster not simply because of pearl inside, but also because it was traditionally opened with a blade. It may be an image of readily-available wealth, but it is money to be specifically gained through violent means.

        Reply
  12. Sam
    Sam at |

    I’m not sure about this whole post and don’t care enough to discuss but whoever Dennis is, you made my little piece of Australia giggle hysterically tonight, thank you 🙂

    Reply
  13. MarkAngelo
    MarkAngelo at |

    Whoever made this, I love you! LOL. I love the “Wherefore are thou, Romeo” part. It makes me laugh.

    Reply

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