Words at Play : Top 10 Phrases from Shakespeare

#9: Dogs of War

What it means:

the horrors of war

How Shakespeare Used It:

In Julius Caesar, Act 3, Scene 1, a grief-stricken Mark Antony predicts that the instability following Caesar's murder will result in civil war: "Cry 'havoc!' And let slip the dogs of war!"

("Cry havoc" was the military order for soldiers to seize plunder from an enemy.)

Modern example:

"If you doubt that Obama is about to let slip the dogs of war, you need only look back at what he said as a long-shot presidential hopeful in a controversial August 2007 foreign policy speech." —┬áJames Gordon Meek, New York Daily News, May 10, 2010

Dogs of War has also been used in the titles of songs, video games, novels, and films.

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