Old 11-08-2003, 09:55 PM
Freiheit Freiheit is offline
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Dirty Shakespeare

I've read a couple shakespeare plays in school, and found them mildly interesting. But something I found really interesting were a couple dirty puns I saw. At first, I figured that stuff must just sound dirty. But then I stumbled on a web page that said that mr. S did stuff like that all the time, and my textbooks were probably heavily edited.

So, guys, I (and, I'm sure, lots of others) would like to hear quotes of dirty jokes found in shakespeare's works.
Old 11-08-2003, 10:03 PM
Katisha Katisha is offline
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There are too many bawdy puns in Shakespeare to cover them exhaustively here, but my rule of thumb is that if you think something in Shakespeare is dirty, it very likely is.
Old 11-08-2003, 10:10 PM
Forbin Forbin is offline
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Get a copy of The Decameron.
It isn't Shakespeare, but it's ribald.
Old 11-08-2003, 10:38 PM
Lola Lola is offline
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"That I were a poperin pear
And thou an open-arse.'

(Romeo and Juliet, almost certainly misquoted)

Isn't it Othello that mentions "the beast with two backs"?
Old 11-08-2003, 10:52 PM
jackelope jackelope is offline
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Right play, wrong character, Lola; Iago tells, uh, someone that, uh, someone else and, uh, a third person are making the beat with two backs.

All right, I'll go look it up...



What profane wretch art thou?


I am one, sir, that comes to tell you your daughter and the Moor are now making the beast with two backs.
Old 11-08-2003, 11:53 PM
Caesar's Ghost Caesar's Ghost is offline
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The book An Underground Education by Richard Zacks has a section on this.

Some examples:

Iras: Am I not an inch of fortune better than she?

Charmain: Well, if you were but an inch of fortune better than I, where would you choose it?

Iras: Not in my husband's nose. --Antony & Cleopatra
Bawd: Crack the glass of her virginity, and make the rest malleable. --Pericles
Malvolio: By my life, this is my lady's hand. These be her very C's, her U's, and her T's; and thus she makes her great P's. It is, in contempt of question, her hand. --Twelfth Night
Old 11-09-2003, 12:05 AM
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Johnny Bravo Johnny Bravo is offline
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Wow. I was seriously just going to start this thread. Here's my current favorite.

Petrucio: Who knows not where a wasp does wear his sting? In his tail.
Katherine: In his tongue.
Pet: Whose tongue?
Kate: Yours, if you talk of tails; and so farewell.
Pet: What, with my tongue in your tail?

--Taming of the Shrew
Old 11-09-2003, 01:56 AM
wolf_meister wolf_meister is offline
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Lady, shall I lie in your lap? (Lying down at OPHELIA's feet)

OPHELIA No, my lord.

HAMLET I mean, my head upon your lap?

OPHELIA Ay, my lord.

HAMLET Do you think I meant country matters?

OPHELIA I think nothing, my lord.

HAMLET That's a fair thought to lie between maids' legs.

There are obvious sexual references in those lines but go to this site (Item 12) to read about Hamlet's reference to "country matters":


good topic freiheit
Old 11-09-2003, 09:32 AM
xejkh xejkh is offline
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Who can control his fate? 'tis not so now.
Be not afraid, though you do see me weapon'd;
Here is my journey's end, here is my butt

I can just imagine Othello, waving his dagger, and pointing to his rear-end.

Hamlet, II.ii

My excellent good friends! How dost thou,
Guildenstern? Ah, Rosencrantz! Good lads, how do ye both?

As the indifferent children of the earth.

Happy, in that we are not over-happy;
On fortune's cap we are not the very button.

Nor the soles of her shoe?

Neither, my lord.

Then you live about her waist, or in the middle of
her favours?

'Faith, her privates we.

In the secret parts of fortune? O, most true; she
is a strumpet. What's the news?

A little joke on Lady Luck.
Old 11-09-2003, 10:41 AM
epraz epraz is offline
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JULIUS CAESAR: "Come on my right hand"
Old 11-09-2003, 10:48 AM
Sublight Sublight is offline
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My favorite, from Titus Andronicus

Chiron: Thou hast undone our mother.
Aaron: Villain, I have done thy mother.

And it means exactly what it sounds like.
Old 11-09-2003, 11:44 AM
Freiheit Freiheit is offline
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Great stuff, guys. Thanks for responding.
Old 11-09-2003, 11:49 AM
Mr. Babbington Mr. Babbington is offline
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I went to a production of "As You Like It" when I was in high school. There were run-ons between scenes, with crazy hijinks.
One sticks out in my mind.

Phoebe: Thou hast not the measure for pleasure.
Silvius: (running after her, his breeches at his ankles) IM YOUNG!!!! I'LL GROW!!!!
Old 11-09-2003, 01:10 PM
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Chronos Chronos is offline
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Of course, there's the famous "Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them", from Twelfth Night. And there's a lot of them in Measure for Measure, too. Upon being informed that one of the main characters is in jail, "Why? What has he done?" "A woman.".

Of course Shakespeare intended all of these. Why did you think that he's stayed so popular over all the centuries?
Old 11-09-2003, 03:01 PM
Krisfer the Cat Krisfer the Cat is offline
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The old man in Taming of the Shrew : My cake is dough on both sides.

Touchstone in As You Like It is quite the naughty boy. Just listen to the things he says! Unfortunately, in one of my moves my copy has gotten lost of buried
We discover when we map the 2004 election results that the states for Kerry have the most Universities and the states for Bush have the most UFO sightings.
Old 11-09-2003, 03:46 PM
Katisha Katisha is offline
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I rather like this exchange from Much Ado About Nothing:

DON PEDRO: You have put him down, lady, you have put him down.
BEATRICE: So I would not he should do me, lest I should prove the mother of fools.

Mercutio in Romeo and Juliet is pretty much the champion at this sort of thing. A sample:

MERCUTIO: Thou desirest me to stop in my tale against the hair.
BENVOLIO: Thou wouldst else have made thy tale large.
MERCUTIO: O, thou art deceived; I would have made it short: for I was come to the whole depth of my tale, and meant indeed to occupy the argument no longer.

And there's this unfortunate innuendo from Henry V:

"Pistol's cock is up, and flashing fire will follow!"

Well, I suppose when your name is a phallic symbol, you can't help but talk dirty...
Old 11-09-2003, 04:11 PM
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Guinastasia Guinastasia is offline
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Damn, I gotta go dig out my old Shakespeare textbook from the attic!

I do remember in the first part of Henry IV, when the French send the King tennis balls, and our professor was asking us about what the message was. We were trying to guess, and I thought they were saying that the English didn't have the balls to do anything.

But I was wrong, dammit.
Old 11-09-2003, 04:31 PM
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rowrrbazzle rowrrbazzle is offline
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Twelfth Night, II.v.
By my life, this is my lady's hand - these be her very C's, her U's and her T's, and thus makes she her great P's.
I'll edit it a bit to make it clearer: "these be her very C's, her U's, 'n' her T's".

Also see "Shakespeare's Bawdy" by Eric Partridge for much more.
Old 11-09-2003, 04:36 PM
Potter Potter is offline
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The puntastic Sonnet 135, keeping in mind that "Will" could stand for the writer's name, 'will' as a noun (inclination or disposition), a lady's rudie bits, or a gentleman's rudie bits:
Whoever hath her wish, thou hast thy will,
And 'Will' to boot, and 'Will' in over-plus,
More than enough am I that vex thee still,
To thy sweet will making addition thus.
Wilt thou whose will is large and spacious,
Not once vouchsafe to hide my will in thine?
Shall will in others seem right gracious,
And in my will no fair acceptance shine?
The sea all water, yet receives rain still,
And in abundance addeth to his store,
So thou being rich in will add to thy will
One will of mine to make thy large will more.
Let no unkind, no fair beseechers kill,
Think all but one, and me in that one 'Will.'
Old 11-09-2003, 06:18 PM
bonzer bonzer is offline
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Shakespeare was notorious enough for being indecent in places that he indirectly gave rise to the, now possibly slightly archaic, term "to bowdlerize". Thomas Bowdler (1754-1825) having edited out the rude bits, or rather "whatever is unfit to be read aloud by a gentleman to a company of ladies", to produce The Family Shakespeare in 1818. It's sufficiently famous as a case of 19th century prudishness that I'd hope that textbook editors these days would be wary of following his example.

The Cambridge Companion to Literature in English's entry on him notes that he did the same with Gibbon. He'd at least put the very rude bits in Latin in the first place.
Old 11-09-2003, 06:27 PM
BrainGlutton BrainGlutton is offline
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From An Incomplete Education, by Judy Jones and William Wilson (Ballantine Books, 1987), p. 212:

DIE -- Can mean "to come in lovemaking; to have an orgasm." This is what Benedick means in Much Ado About Nothing when he says, "I will live in thy mouth, die in thy lap, and be buried in thy eyes.' Heady knowledge, but use it sparingly: Die usually means, "to die."


HORNS -- The adornment and symbol of the cheated-on husband, the cuckold. Alluded to when Othello says, "I have a pain upon my forehead here." More often, the basis of the favorite family of jokes among the Elizabethans, who seemed to think any reference to horns was in and of itself uproarious.
Old 11-10-2003, 12:23 AM
GilaB GilaB is offline
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We got the semi-bowdlerized version of Shakespeare in my high school (the joys of religious education!), so I was very surprised recently to see a reference in a story I was reading to a dirty joke in the first scene of Romeo and Juliet, which I'd read multiple times in ninth grade when I was bored with what was going on in class. Anyway, an exchange between two Capulet servants:

Sampson: A dog of that house shall move me to stand: I will
take the wall of any man or maid of Montague's.

Gregory: That shows thee a weak slave; for the weakest goes
to the wall.

Sampson: True; and therefore women, being the weaker vessels,
are ever thrust to the wall: therefore I will push
Montague's men from the wall, and thrust his maids
to the wall.

Gregory: The quarrel is between our masters and us their men

Sampson: 'Tis all one, I will show myself a tyrant: when I
have fought with the men, I will be cruel with the
maids, and cut off their heads.

Gregory: The heads of the maids?

Sampson: Ay, the heads of the maids, or their maidenheads;
take it in what sense thou wilt.

Gregory: They must take it in sense that feel it.

Sampson: Me they shall feel while I am able to stand: and
'tis known I am a pretty piece of flesh.

Gregory: 'Tis well thou art not fish; if thou hadst, thou
hadst been poor John. Draw thy tool! here comes
two of the house of the Montagues.
Old 11-10-2003, 12:57 AM
jackelope jackelope is offline
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Oddly, I was thinking of opening a similar thread recently as well, Johnny Bravo.

Sonnet 20:
A woman's face with Nature's own hand painted
Hast thou, the master-mistress of my passion;
A woman's gentle heart, but not acquainted
With shifting change, as is false women's fashion;
An eye more bright than theirs, less false in rolling,
Gilding the object whereupon it gazeth;
A man in hue, all 'hues' in his controlling,
Much steals men's eyes and women's souls amazeth.
And for a woman wert thou first created;
Till Nature, as she wrought thee, fell a-doting,
And by addition me of thee defeated,
By adding one thing to my purpose nothing.
But since she prick'd thee out for women's pleasure,
Mine be thy love and thy love's use their treasure.
This is written to the young prettyboy the narrator admires. The "addition" by which Nature "me of thee defeated" is of course a penis; "this person is so beautiful that I can't help being in love, but dammit, he's MALE!"

I picture him looking like young Elvis.

The rest of the sonnet is left open to the interpretation of your filthy minds.
Old 11-10-2003, 01:08 AM
jackelope jackelope is offline
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Originally posted by jackelope
Oddly, I was thinking of opening a similar thread recently as well, Johnny Bravo.
And my inner copyeditor begins to shriek. Make that: "It's an odd coincidence: I was just thinking...."

I wasn't thinking oddly. Or no more so than usual, I suppose.
Old 11-10-2003, 01:14 AM
Walloon Walloon is offline
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Henry V when the French princess Katherine is getting a lesson in English from her lady in waiting:

Katherine: Comment appelez-vous le pied et la robe? [What do you call la pied and la robe?]
Alice: Le foot,* madame, et le count.**
Katherine: Le foot et le count! O Seigneur Dieu! ils sont les mots de son mauvais, corruptible, gros, et impudique, et non pour les dames de honneur d'user. Je ne voudrais prononcer ces mots devant les seigneurs de France pour tout le monde. Foh! le foot et le count! [Le foot and le count! O Lord, those are bad words, wicked, coarse, and immodest, and not proper for well-bred ladies to use. I wouldn't utter those words before French gentlemen for all the world. Foh! le foot and le count!]

* sounds like the French word foutre, "fuck"
** Alice meant to say "gown"; "count" sounds like the French word con, "cunt"
Old 11-10-2003, 01:14 AM
Cervaise Cervaise is offline
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Romeo and Juliet Act III Scene 5 is full of this stuff. It's the scene immediately following the consummation of their marriage, i.e. got down and most iambically dirty.

The first word of the scene is "wilt," in Juliet's question "wilt thou be gone," but of course there's a sense that they've been rockin' the bed all night and Romeo just can't get it up again. She also makes a few bird-related references that will go over the head of a modern audience, but that follow the theme; the one that the modern listener won't miss is when she says a bird's call "pierced the fearful hollow of thine ear."

Romeo, in his dialogue, continues the bird imagery, but also responds to the "wilt" reference when he says, "Night's candles are burnt out." He's also probably thinking of Juliet's boobalies when he describes how the breaking dawn "stands tiptoe on the misty mountain tops." He finishes this speech by saying, "I must be gone and live, or stay and die," with "die" of course being a double entendre both for death and for sexual climax.

It continues in this vein, though the references aren't quite so explicit. The last thing Juliet says before the Nurse comes and interrupts them is "more light and light it grows," and you know she's only partly referring to the dawn.

I love this stuff.
Old 11-10-2003, 02:02 AM
jackelope jackelope is offline
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This thread rocks.


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