Teaching Shakespeare!

A Folger Education Blog

Shakespeare on Testing

(Image: Folger Library)
(Image: Folger Library)

Whether it’s the PARCC, Smarter Balanced, IB, AP, or another high-stakes assessment, we know lots of you and your students have testing on the brain… which is why we thought you might enjoy

reading a few lines from Shakespeare, all on the subject of—what else?—tests.

The word “test” appears 4 times in Shakespeare’s works:


“Bring me to the test, and I the matter will reword.”

– Hamlet, Hamlet


“Let there be some more test made of my metal, before so noble and so great a figure be stamp’d upon it.”

– Angelo, Measure for Measure


“To vouch this is no proof without more wider and more overt test than these thin habits and poor likelihoods of modern seeming do prefer against him.”

– The Duke of Venice, Othello


“All thy vexations were but my trials of thy love, and thou hast strangely stood the test.”

– Prospero, The Tempest


What do you think of these lines? What’s your favorite? Are your students shouting “Bring me to the test!” as they walk into class these days? (OK, probably not, if you’re in quiet testing mode…)

Tell us what you think by tweeting us at @FolgerED. And don’t forget to text Shakespeare your birthday greeting at 414-4-FOLGER (414-436-5437)!