The Impact of William Shakespeare on the English Language

TLDR William Shakespeare's plays and writings have had a profound influence on the English language, introducing over 1700 words and phrases that are commonly used today. From idioms like "It's Greek to me" to phrases like "vanish into thin air" and "wild goose chase," Shakespeare's contributions to the English language are unmatched.

Timestamped Summary

00:00 William Shakespeare, the greatest playwright in English history, has had a significant impact on the English language through the addition of numerous words and phrases.
02:04 Over 1700 words and phrases that are commonly used today were introduced by Shakespeare, including the idiom "It's Greek to me."
03:58 Shakespeare introduced the phrases "vanish into thin air" and "wild goose chase," which have since become common idioms in the English language.
05:53 Shakespeare used the phrase "in a pickle" to refer to being drunk or in a difficult situation, and also popularized the phrase "love is blind" to describe overlooking flaws in a romantic relationship.
07:51 Shakespeare introduced phrases such as "green-eyed monster," "too much of a good thing," "haven't slept a wink," and "eaten me out of house and home" into the English language.
09:47 Shakespeare introduced not only phrases, but also a multitude of words, including compound words, borrowed words, and invented words, into the English language.
12:09 Shakespeare's influence on English through the words and phrases he introduced is greater than anyone else in history.
Categories: History Education

Browse more History