Grocott & Ward, comps. Grocott’s Familiar Quotations, 6th ed. 189-?.


When I told you
My state was nothing, I should then have told you
That I was worse than nothing.
Shakespeare.—Merchant of Venice, Act III. Scene 2. (Bassanio to Portia.)

Gratiano speaks an infinite deal of nothing.
Shakespeare.—Merchant of Venice, Act I. Scene 1. (Bassanio to Antonio.)

Narcissus is the glory of his race:
For who does nothing with a better grace?
Dr. Young.—Love of Fame, Sat. IV. Line 85.

Nothing! thou elder brother e’en to shade.
Rochester.—Poem on Nothing.

He answered nothing.
St. Matthew, Chap. xxvii. Ver. 12.

O mighty nothing! unto thee,
Nothing, we owe all things that be;
God spake once when he all things made,
He saved all when he nothing said,
The world was made of nothing then;
’Tis made by nothing now again.
Crashaw.—Steps to the Temple.

Nothing but a night not to be seen,
Was seen by us.
Habington.—The Queen of Arragon, Act V. Scene 1.

The covering sky is nothing; Bohemia nothing;
My wife is nothing; nor nothing have these nothings,
If this be nothing.
Shakespeare.—Winter’s Tale, Act I. Scene 2. (Leontes to Camillo.)

Nothing in his life
Became him like the leaving it.
Shakespeare.—Macbeth, Act I. Scene 4. (Malcolm to Duncan.)

Thus synods oft concern for faith conceal,
And for important nothings shew a zeal.
Garth.—Dispensary, Canto I. Line 71.

Who nothing has to lose, the war bewails;
And he who nothing pays, at taxes rails.
Congreve.—Poem on Pleasing.