Careful Words

second (n.)

second (v.)

second (adv.)

second (adj.)

All the world's a stage,

And all the men and women merely players.

They have their exits and their entrances;

And one man in his time plays many parts,

His acts being seven ages. At first the infant,

Mewling and puking in the nurse's arms.

And then the whining school-boy, with his satchel

And shining morning face, creeping like snail

Unwillingly to school. And then the lover,

Sighing like furnace, with a woful ballad

Made to his mistress' eyebrow. Then a soldier,

Full of strange oaths and bearded like the pard;

Jealous in honour, sudden and quick in quarrel,

Seeking the bubble reputation

Even in the cannon's mouth. And then the justice,

In fair round belly with good capon lined,

With eyes severe and beard of formal cut,

Full of wise saws and modern instances;

And so he plays his part. The sixth age shifts

Into the lean and slipper'd pantaloon,

With spectacles on nose and pouch on side;

His youthful hose, well saved, a world too wide

For his shrunk shank; and his big manly voice,

Turning again toward childish treble, pipes

And whistles in his sound. Last scene of all,

That ends this strange eventful history,

Is second childishness and mere oblivion,

Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything.

William Shakespeare (1564-1616): As You Like It. Act ii. Sc. 7.

A second Daniel, a Daniel, Jew!

Now, infidel, I have you on the hip.

William Shakespeare (1564-1616): The Merchant of Venice. Act iv. Sc. 1.

'T is the curse of service,

Preferment goes by letter and affection,

And not by old gradation, where each second

Stood heir to the first.

William Shakespeare (1564-1616): Othello. Act i. Sc. 1.

  For my part, I had rather be the first man among these fellows than the second man in Rome.

Plutarch (46(?)-120(?) a d): Life of Caesar.

  Custom is almost a second nature.

Plutarch (46(?)-120(?) a d): Rules for the Preservation of Health. 18.

  To their own second thoughts.

Mathew Henry (1662-1714): Commentaries. Job vi.

Second thoughts, they say, are best.

John Dryden (1631-1701): The Spanish Friar. Act ii. Sc. 2.

  To their own second thoughts.

Mathew Henry (1662-1714): Commentaries. Job vi.