Origins of Sayings - True Love Never Runs Smooth

About the history and origins behind the famous saying true love never runs smooth from Shakespeare.

Stories behind Famous Sayings


Who Said It: William Shakespeare

When: 1595

The Story behind It: This familiar quote comes from A Midsummer Night's Dream. Hermia, the heroine, wants to marry Lysander, but is forbidden to do so by her father. The Duke of Athens, Theseus, is also against the marriage and tells Hermia that she must marry her father's choice, Demetrius, or she will be either locked up in a nunnery or killed. In the first scene of Act I, Lysander consoles Hermia:

Aye me! For aught that I could ever read, Could ever hear by tale or history, The course of true love never did run smooth.

Hermia and Lysander ultimately are wed, after an interesting night in the local forest and an encounter with Oberon and Titania, the king and queen of the fairies.

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