English 112 Notes On Handling Quotes

Posted: May 11, 2016

When quoting four or more lines from Shakespeare, normally you should use block quotation: Richard III tells his troops,

Remember whom you are to cope withal:

A sort of vagabonds, rascals, and runaways,

A scum of Britains and base lackey peasants,

Whom their o'ercloyed country vomits forth

To desperate adventures and assur'd destruction.


In your manuscript, indent block quotations twice -- they are distinct from normal paragraph indentations. Also note the manner of citing the source here. The roman numerals for Act and Scene are standard, although one sees Arabic used by some critics.


In quoting shorter passages in linear form, you still need to indicate line breaks when Shakespeare is writing in verse: Othello recalls, "Upon this hint I spake: / She lov'd me for the dangers I had pass'd, / And I lov'd her that she did pity them" (I.iii.166-168). Note the withholding of final punctuation in this case until after the parenthetical citation. The slash marks indicate line breaks in the verse.