My Kingdom for a Horse Examples

My Kingdom for a Horse

The line "My kingdom for a horse" is from Shakespeare's Richard III. Near the end of the play (Act V, Scene IV), King Richard wanders the battlefield after his horse has been killed. With this line, Shakespeare underscores the fact that King Richard's horse, while one of many of his possessions, is of major importance at that moment in time. Without a horse and on foot, Richard is sure to lose the battle and, thus, his kingdom.

Examples of My Kingdom for a Horse:

How This Line is Used Today:

This line, like many from Shakespeare, continues to be used today. People use and modify this line when they want to show that something insignificant has become important at a specific moment or in a specific situation.

The lines from Richard III-Act V, Scene IV

Alarum: excursions. Enter NORFOLK and forces fighting; to him CATESBY


Rescue, my Lord of Norfolk, rescue, rescue!
The king enacts more wonders than a man,
Daring an opposite to every danger:
His horse is slain, and all on foot he fights,
Seeking for Richmond in the throat of death.
Rescue, fair lord, or else the day is lost!



A horse! a horse! my kingdom for a horse!


Withdraw, my lord; I'll help you to a horse.


Slave, I have set my life upon a cast,
And I will stand the hazard of the die:
I think there be six Richmonds in the field;
Five have I slain to-day instead of him.
A horse! a horse! my kingdom for a horse!


Examples of Usage Today:

A coffee shop owner who has run out of sugar: "Sugar, my coffee shop for some sugar!"

Someone cleaning windows who runs out of window cleaner: "My house for some Windex!"

A businessman who needs to sign contracts but doesn't have a pen: "A pen, a pen, my business for a pen!"

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