Inserting famous quotes into a conversation will usually make you seem smart and well-read, but be careful who you quote! These popular quotes are now commonplace in perfectly filtered Instagram posts. However, if you look into the history and context of these quotes, you might find that their real meaning has been misinterpreted over the years.
1. “Romeo, Romeo, wherefore art thou, Romeo?”
This famous quote for “Romeo and Juliet” has been understood as Juliet asking where Romeo is. But “wherefore art” actually mean “why,” as in “Why are you a Montague, my family’s sworn enemy?”
2. “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend your right to say it.”
This is said to be taken from Voltaire’s “Treaty on Tolerance,” which is about understanding between religions. However, this quote is actually a paraphrasing by Evelyn Beatrice Hall, a writer born two hundred years after Voltaire’s time. The original quote is said to read, “Think for yourselves and let other enjoy the privilege to do so too.”
3. “Love makes the world go ’round.”
Said by the Duchess from “Alice in Wonderland” while beating her baby for sneezing, this quote was actually meant to be sarcastic.
4. “Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon ’em.”
This quote from Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night” was actually only meant to be a line to stroke Malvolio’s ego.
5. “Blood is thicker than water.”
According to authors Albert Jack and R. Richard Pustelniak, the original says that the ties between people who have made a blood covenant are stronger than those formed by “the water of the womb.”
6. “Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?”
While some may be tempted to use this to charm a romantic interest, this was actually written by Shakespeare about his male friend. In fact, Shakespeare wrote hundreds of sonnets about this friend.
7. “Good fences make good neighbors.”
This is from Robert Frost’s “Mending Wall,” where two neighbors are separated by a fence that they’re trying to fix. But later on, they disagree on whether they even need a fence. Thus, the two characters ended up just keeping the fence out of tradition, despite it being more work for both of them. This last line in the poem is meant to be ironic.
8. “The Devil is in the details.”
The original by German architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe reads, “God is in the details.” He is also famous for another quote, “Less is more.”
9. “Oh East is East and West is West and never the twain shall meet.”
This oft-misquoted saying is said to mean that people from opposite sides of the globe will never see eye-to-eye. However, the original by Rudyard Kipling goes on to say, “But there is neither East nor West, Border, nor Breed, nor Birth/When two strong men stand face to face, tho’ they come from the ends of the earth.” Basically, we should all just get along.
10. “Money is the root of all evil.”
It’s actually the love of money that is the root of all evil, according to Timothy 6:10.
11. “Nice guys finish last.”
This quote was originally said by Leo Durocher, the field manager for the Brooklyn Dodgers during their famous Giants-Dodgers rivalry. However, his original quote reads, “Nice guys finish seventh,” and Baseball Digest simply changed “seventh” to “last.”
12. “I took the road less traveled.”
This Robert Frost quote comes from his poem, “The Road Not Taken,” where he decides to choose one path over the other. It implies that you should forge your own path, and not follow the one that’s been taken by others. However, with the context of the poem, you’ll see that he arbitrarily chose his path and just wanted to hide his pessimism.
What other famous quotes have been misquoted over the years? Let us know in the comments below!
The Ancient ‘Cart Tracks’ Of Phrygia Valley Have Puzzled Experts Throughout The Years
Geologists and archaeologists couldn’t agree about the origin and purpose of these mysterious ruts.
Found in the Phrygian Valley of Turkey are some mysterious "cart tracks" of ancient origin. These so-called tracks are, for some reason, cut into the bedrock and are spaced very evenly, as if they were made by cart wheels or some other vehicle.
The ruts itself are pretty deep, with some reaching as much as three feet, and so many experts who studied it are left puzzled over its origin. To add to the dilemma of researchers, it has proved difficult for them to pinpoint the exact date that the tracks were made with some speculating that the ruts were likely made millions of years ago.
So who could have made all these marks and how did they do it?
Called The ‘Wheel Of Giants,’ The Rumj El-Hiri Has Left Experts Baffled For Centuries
Although hardly visible from the ground, this mysterious monument’s patterns look truly impressive from the air.
Some ancient structures can really be shrouded with mystery. Case in point, the Rujm el-Hiri may simply be a bunch of stone circles for casual observers but there’s something about it that makes it particularly interesting.
Besides, the large stone monument has patterns that are hardly visible from the ground but are, quite impressively, only visible from the air.
The pile of stone rings form what appears to be a design of a wheel!
Researchers Confirm: Ancient Mystery Mummy Legs Belong to Queen Nefertiti
Three portions of mummified legs were found in an ancient tomb in 1904. More than 100 years later, we now know its real owner.
In 1904, Egyptologists ventured into the tomb of Queen Nefertiti only to find that her grand burial place had been looted and now just a shell of its former self. Among the remains within the tomb were three portions of mummified legs, which were assumed to belong to Queen Nefertiti.
The owner of these mummified legs have baffled Egyptologists for decades.
Queen Nefertiti was the most famous wife of Ramses the Great, the ruler of Egypt from 1279 to 1213. The queen's rob was among the most elaborate in the Valley of Queens, near the capital Luxor. The walls of her tomb were decorated with various colorful paintings, including a ceiling depicting the night sky.
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