Thursday, 13 October 2011

There is a Tide in the Affairs of Men...

I thought the next lines of

There is a tide in the affairs of men

Which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune.
Omitted, all the voyage of their life
Is bound in shallows and in miseries.
On such a full sea are we now afloat,
And we must take the current when it serves,
Or lose our ventures.

and that it came from Shakespeare's Julius Caesar.

I was amused to find that our first English Nobel Prize Winner for Literature, Rudyard Kipling, had borrowed it for the beginning of 'Kidnapped' in 1888.

The start of 'Kidnapped' reads -

"There is a tide in the affairs of men
Which, taken any way you please, is bad
And strands them in forsaken guts and creeks
No decent soul would think of visiting.
You may arrest some rash adventurer,
Who - h'm - will hardly thank you for your pains."

Anyone want to suggest a third version?


  1. Not me - wouldn't dare to put myself on the same level with Shakespeare and Kipling!

  2. As you know I don't write I just ramble.
    I thought I rambled....this is rambling par excellence.
    My version:
    Go with the flow, Bro.
    Or suffer the consequences.

  3. For a non-writer that's a great one, Adrian!

  4. "When the tide of life
    flows against you, and the currrent upsets your boat,
    don't think of things that
    might have been...
    Just lie on on your back
    and float!"
    I would like to say that I made that up, but I memorized it from an old Honeymooners sketch, with Ed saying this, he worked in the sewers!


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