Shakespeare is given credit for as many as 10,000 first-used words and phrases in his plays and poems.
But did he actually coin them?
Some of them, perhaps, but it’s likely that most of the words were commonly used in his time and his plays are merely the earliest known written usage.
Some historians give him credit for actually coining all 10,000, but others cut the number down to a few hundred.
Alligator, pander, hobnob, skim milk, and leapfrog, for instance, are all first noted in his works.
Phrases he’s been credited with include “bated breath,” “one fell swoop,” “be all and end all,” and “hoist with his own petard.”