12 Quotes Commonly Misattributed To Shakespeare

Alas poor Yorick, you could have googled.

1. “When I saw you I fell in love and you smiled because you knew.”

Where it’s actually from: An 1893 Italian opera, Falstaff, with a libretto by Arrigo Boito. The opera itself is based on The Merry Wives Of Windsor, written by the Bard himself, but the line is not found in the play itself, only in the opera.

2. “Love is a wonderful terrible thing.”

Where it’s actually from: Gabriela, Clove, and Cinnamon by Jorge Amado. Also the quote is actually, “Love—the most wonderful and most terrible thing in the world.”

3. “The earth has music for those who listen.”

Where it’s actually from: The quote is definitively not in any of Shakespeare’s written works. It’s most commonly attributed to poet and author George Santayana or Oliver Wendall Holmes.

4. “You say you love rain…”

Where it’s actually from: A turkish poem titled, I Am Afraid. In addition, umbrellas weren’t common in Europe until the 17th century, roughly a 100 years after Shakespeare died.

5. “The less you speak of greatness, the more shall I think of it.”

Where it’s actually from: Sir Francis Bacon to Sir Edward Coke in 1601 during a quarrel in a bar.

6. “So dear I love him that with him/All deaths I could endure/Without him, live on life.”

Where it’s actually from: Paradise Lost by John Milton.

7. “When words fail music speaks.”

Where it’s actually from:This quote is paraphrased from Hans Christian Anderson’s “What The Moon Saw” (from What The Moon Saw: And Other Tales), roughly two centuries after Shakespeare died. The actual quote is, “when words fail, sounds can often speak.”

8. “We’re all in the same game; just different levels. Dealing with the same hell; just different devils.”

Where it’s actually from: Tumblr staaahp, this is a Jadakiss song.

9. “All glory comes from daring to begin.”

Where it’s actually from:John Brown”, a poem by Eugene Fitch Ware.

10. “Love is the most beautiful of dreams and the worst of nightmares.”

Where it’s actually from: The Notebook of Love twitter handle.

11. “Expectation is the root of all heartache.”

Where it’s actually from: While no one is quite sure where this quote sprang from, it’s definitively not in any of Shakespeare’s works. The quote does closely resemble, and is commonly said to derive from the Second Noble Truth of Buddhism: desire is the root of all suffering.

12. “Alas poor Yorick, you were glam as fuck.”

Where it’s actually from: Tumblr. But we feel like the Bard would totally approve of this one.

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