Spring cleaning!

I have thrown out (read that, recycled) piles of files during the past two weeks. One I kept, though, was a Shakespeare file.


I take my discovery of this file as an invitation to play teacher once more. Actually, another good reason is that tomorrow, April 23, is reputedly Shakespeare’ s birthday as well as his day of death (1564-1616), and he gets all the “Purple Passage” space for notable quotes today. But first a verse, and then a quiz. (Fret not, answers provided on next post, April 25)



Reputedly, Shakespeare invented words by changing verbs to adjectives, adding syllables or even coining new words. Here is a short list. Add vowels only!

1. b__mp

2. __m__z__m__nt

3. __nch__vy

4. __ss__ss__n__t__ __n

5. c__ __rtsh__p

6. dw__ndl__

7. f__pp__sh

8. h__ __dw__nk__d

9. l__ __pfr__g

10. z__ny                (Okay, so this was easy!)

Shakespeare’s plays contain so many memorable lines that many familiar with them may not know their origin. I am sure you have heard some of these, which need to be completed with one word:

Good night, good night! parting is such sweet sorrow, That I shall say good night till it be _____________.        Romeo and Juliet

The course of true love never did run_________.     A Midsummer Night’s Dream

The devil can cite Scripture for his _________.   A Midsummer Night’s Dream

The better part of valour is __________.          King Henry IV, Part I

Sweet are the uses of adversity:

Which, like the toad, ugly and venomous,

Wears yet a precious jewel in his head;

And this our life, exempt from public haunt,

Finds tongues in trees, books in the running brooks, Sermons in ________, and good in every thing.         As You Like It

Something is rotten in the state of _________.          Hamlet

There is nothing either good or bad, but __________ makes it so.       Hamlet

The play’s the thing / Wherein I’ll catch the _________ of the king.        Hamlet

When sorrows come, they come not single _________,  But in battalions.      Hamlet

O brave new _________, / That has such people in ‘t!      The Tempest

Want more Shakespeare? Last April I write about Shakespeare’s birthday in my classroom. Find the other link here.

Add some coined words I’ve missed, another Shakespearean quote, or even a thought about April and spring-cleaning. I love words. Share some of yours here!

Coming next: My Little Black Bookends Tell All