Tag Archives: William Shakespeare

“Love me or hate me, both are in my favour, …” Did William Shakespeare Really Say That?


Myself

By T. V. Antony Raj

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'Love me or hate me' - fake Shakespeare quote

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I came across the above posted on Facebook.

Love me or hate me, both are in my favor. 
If you love me, I’ll always be in your heart.
If you hate me, I’ll always be in your mind.

This quote now circulating on Facebook is another case of attribution of something to William Shakespeare that was not really said by him. I cannot find any official attribution of this quote and it definitely falls victim to the “Shakespeare said so” syndrome.

The fact that this quote uses “you” for the singular subjective and “your” for the possessive is sufficient proof that the bard did not write this because in Shakespearean English these words would be “thou” and “thy.”

Does anyone have an idea where this quote came from?

Maybe this quote is a perverted version of William Shakespeare’s Sonnet 90: Then Hate Me When Thou Wilt; If Ever, Now

Then hate me when thou wilt; if ever, now;
Now, while the world is bent my deeds to cross,
Join with the spite of fortune, make me bow,
And do not drop in for an after-loss:
Ah! do not, when my heart hath ‘scaped this sorrow,
Come in the rearward of a conquered woe;
Give not a windy night a rainy morrow,
To linger out a purposed overthrow.
If thou wilt leave me, do not leave me last,
When other petty griefs have done their spite,
But in the onset come: so shall I taste
At first the very worst of fortune’s might;
And other strains of woe, which now seem woe,
Compared with loss of thee, will not seem so.

So, don’t be surprised if one of these days someone posts on the social media that the Holy Bible was another work of the Bard of Avon and many would click “Like” and repost the same!

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Did William Shakespeare Really Say That?


Readers have viewed this post more than 41,574 times. 

Myself

By T. V. Antony Raj

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Shakespeare said

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The above is a widely copied and circulated quote on Facebook and other social networks, but I could not find the source of the quote anywhere in the works of William Shakespeare. Even though the attribution of the above quote to Shakespeare is incorrect, some people due to their ignorance re-post it without verification. Even goodreads.com, searchquotes.com, azquotes.com, and a few other websites have this fake quote on their pages.

Someone had initiated this fraud by copying the part of the text starting with “Before you speak” from the short poem titled “Before You” by William Arthur Ward (1921 – March 30, 1994), one of America’s most quoted writers of inspirational maxims.

Before You
by William Arthur Ward

Before you speak, listen.
Before you write, think.
Before you spend, earn.
Before you invest, investigate.
Before you criticize, wait.
Before you pray, forgive.
Before you quit, try.
Before you retire, save.
Before you die, give.

Even though we have now stepped into the 21st century, a few choose to remain ignorant. I just wonder why these copycats do not surf the internet, enlighten themselves, and verify facts before posting whatever they copy on social media.

On a lighter vein, I came across this comment by Rodolphe in RoDoLpHe’S wOrLd dated August 18, 2011.

To blog or not to blog“, said Hamlet, in reply to Othello who told him “Put out the comment, and then, put out the comment.”

Both knew that Henry the Fifth was spamming Richard III’s blogger account on purpose because the latter dated Cromwell’s third girlfriend. It was Falstaff who discovered the plot because he hacked Iago’s secret identity database.

I hope no one will copy portions of Rodolphe’s comment and post them on social media and attribute it to the Bard of Avon.

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“I Cried Because I Had No Shoes…”


Readers have viewed this post more than 27,463 times.

Myself

 

 

 

 

BT. V. Antony Raj

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I have come across several websites that cited the quote: “I cried because I had no shoes until I met a man who had no feet” and its variants.

Sadly, the claims of the origin of this quote vary. Some cite it as Chinese, Indian, Jewish, Irish, etc. Usually, it is quoted as anonymous with source unknown.

In Goodreads, we find two instances of the quote. One says Helen Keller said it and another says it was said by Wally Lamb.

In her book “EFFECTIVE LIVING,” Lois Smith Murray says on page 154:

Tolstoy wrote, “I cried because I had no shoes until I met  a man who had no feet.”

In his book “A FOR ARTEMIS,” Sutton Woodfield says on page 44:

Over Goldie’s bed, tacked on the wall, was one of those mottoes you can buy at Woolworths for a bob. This one said, “I cried because I had no shoes until I met a man who had no feet.”

However, the most common claim points to the Persian poet Abū-Muhammad Muslih al-Dīn bin Abdallāh Shīrāzī (Persian: ابومحمد الدین بن عبدالله شیرازی‎), better known by his pen-name Saʿdī (Persian: سعدی‎) or Saadi Shirazi or simply Saadi. Born in Shiraz, Iran, c. 1210, he was one of the major Persian poets and prose writers of the medieval period.

Saadi Shirazi (1190 - 1290)
Saadi Shirazi (1190 – 1290)

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His best-known works are Bustan (The Orchard) completed in 1257 and Gulistan (The Rose Garden) in 1258.

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Saadi in a Rose garden, from a Mughal manuscript of his work Gulistan, c. 1645
Saadi in a Rose garden, from a Mughal manuscript of his work Gulistan, c. 1645

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Saʿdī composed his didactic work Gulistan in both prose and verse. It contains many moralizing stories like the fables of the French writer Jean de La Fontaine (1621-95) and personal anecdotes. The text interspersed with a variety of short poems contains aphorisms, advice, and humorous reflections. It demonstrates Saʿdī ‘s profound awareness of the absurdity of human existence.

In Persian lands, his maxims were highly valued and manuscripts of his work were widely copied and illustrated. Saʿdī wrote that he composed Gulistan to teach the rules of conduct in life to both kings and dervishes.

In Chapter III On the Excellence of Contentment, story 19, Saʿdī  wrote:

Persian shoes (Source - hollywoodpsychotherapist.homestead.com)

I never lamented about the vicissitudes of time or complained of the turns of fortune except on the occasion when I was barefooted and unable to procure slippers. But when I entered the great mosque of Kufah with a sore heart and beheld a man without feet I offered thanks to the bounty of God, consoled myself for my want of shoes and recited:

A roast fowl is to the sight of a satiated man
Less valuable than a blade of fresh grass on the table
And to him who has no means nor power
A burnt turnip is a roasted fowl.

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Funerary Monument of Sa’di, in Shiraz, Iran (Source: findagrave.com)
Funerary Monument of Sa’di, in Shiraz, Iran (Source: findagrave.com)

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Saʿdī died on December 9, 1291, in Shiraz, Iran.

Modern versions of his story are often cited erroneously as Arabian proverbs, with wordings such as:

I thought I was abused because I had no shoes until I met a man who had no feet,”

I cried because I had no shoes until I met a man who had no feet,

I felt sorry because I had no shoes, then I met a man who had no feet.

In the case of Helen Keller the quote “I cried because I had no shoes until I met a man who had no feet” derived from Saʿdī ‘s story had been her credo. It helped her overcome self-pity and to be of service to others.

Recently I saw this quote on Facebook that cited the author as William Shakespeare. Facebook is a notorious medium where people post quotes without verifying who said it in the first instance. For example, the recent trend has been to take someone’s quote and add a picture of some dignitary and post it saying it was said so by that dignitary. Dr A.P.J. Abdul Kalam happens to be one of those favourite dignitaries. So, someone might even post this quote with the picture of Dr A.P.J. Abdul Kalam and claim that this was said by him. And some people to keep up with the Joneses will immediately copy the quote and propagate it believing in the false axiom that “whatever is in print must be true.”

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The Mysterious William Shakespeare


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Myself . By T.V. Antony Raj
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I was there once.


Myself . 

By T. V. Antony Raj
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My young friend Joe Napoleon and I were talking about hospitals. When I mentioned the name of a hospital in Chennai, he said: “Uncle, I was there once.”

This brought to my mind the friendly exchange I had with another blogger – OneDaringJew, Raphael Gamaroff living in South Africa, born to Jewish parents who as children, in the early 1900s, immigrated to South Africa from the Russian Empire.

Recently, on March 29, 2012, I posted in my blog “Inspirations” an article titled … before Abraham came to be, I AM and I ended it as follows:

YHWH stems from the Jewish conception of monotheism that God exists by himself for himself, and is the uncreated Creator who is independent of any concept, force, or entity “I AM that I AM”.

 

On reading my post, Raphael Gamaroff alias bography commented:

Thanks Tvaraj.

Much useful and inspiring information. You asked

“So, when Jesus said ‘I Am’ was it another way of referring to God?”

What do you think? I ask because – I might have missed it – I don’t see any answer to your question, or did you mean to provide no answer?

So, I answered:

Hello bography,

I am just a humble soul, a layman.

The daily gospel readings inspire me so I try to gather a bit more information to aid my understanding.

When I wrote: “So when Jesus said ‘I Am’ was it another way of referring to God?” is a perennial question that could be answered by One Daring Jew like you and others dedicated to the ministries.

In the last paragraph in my post, I have put in gathered information.

‘YHWH stems from the Jewish conception of monotheism that God exists by himself for himself, and is the uncreated Creator who is independent of any concept, force, or entity “I AM that I AM”.’

Since Jesus was a Jew you will know him better than I do. I want to learn more about Jesus and his times. That is why I have undertaken to write a post daily on what inspires me, namely the daily reading from the gospels.

And Raphael was quick to lay the next question:

Tvaraj

You say, “I am just a humble soul, a layman.”

As you know most Jews, Christians, etc. are laypersons. If they are genuine about their faith, their lay status is no excuse to “layabout,” which you obviously don’t do.

If, say, a Christian does not devote a good amount of time to the study of his religion, he is not a genuine Christian. You have shown what a humble layman – and an agnostic (that is what you are at the moment, right?) – can do with his time, effort and ability. And English is only your second language, not so!

But to return to your post, you have laid (tee hee lay-man) out the issue well. There is Jesus who claims to be God (do you agree that he is claiming this?) and there is the Jewish claim of who God is. They both can’t be right, right?

Do you think that knowing which one of the two is true could affect your eternal destiny? But I suppose I should have first asked you whether you believe in an afterlife.

This was my reply to him:

Raphael (aka bogrophy),

About afterlife? I don’t know… Is there a life after death? This too is another perennial question I find in ‘my’ book of life.

There is an age-old adage in my mother tongue Tamil, “மாண்டவர் மீண்டதில்லை, மீண்டும் வந்து வாழ்ந்ததில்லை” (Transliteration: maandavar meendathillai, meendum vandhu vaalndhathillai) meaning “the dead don’t resurrect nor do come back and live again.”

About 2 years ago, in India, I suddenly fell ill. My elder daughter rushed me to a nearby clinic where I blanked out. She later said that for ten minutes or so I was motionless without any pulse. All, including the doctors, assumed I had ‘gone.’

I? I was in a limbo, in a pitch-black, cold, singular, silent abyss.

After a while, I heard the voice of my daughter, faint and far away, crying her heart out, By and by, her voice became louder and I could hear her giving instructions to some people beside her to be careful with my body/person.

I slowly regained consciousness but couldn’t open my eyes as it was excruciatingly bright. Then I saw my daughter’s face, tears streaming down her cheek.

So, from then on, I became conscious of the fact that there is some purpose for my resurrection and coming back to live again. So, from that day onwards

“… I do nothing on my own, but I say only what the Father taught me. The one who sent me is with me. He has not left me alone because I always do what is pleasing to him.”

Now don’t say “The devil can cite Scripture for his purpose.”

Mark you this, Bassanio,
The devil can cite Scripture for his purpose.
An evil soul producing holy witness
Is like a villain with a smiling cheek,
A goodly apple rotten at the heart:
O, what a goodly outside falsehood hath!
( Antonio in William Shakespeare’s “The Merchant of Venice”)

Quick Quiz:

If “The devil can cite Scripture for his purpose”, why would he do that?

(a) to show off
(b) to curry favour with God
(c) to disguise his intentions

My choice would be (b). 

So, I was there once – in limbo, in a pitch black, cold, singular silent abyss. I try to open my eyes: nothing. I try to move my arms and my legs but nothing responds. And then I saw the light and am once again with the living now.

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