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The "We will all laugh at gilded butterflies" tattoo on the back of Megan Fox's right shoulder is a quote from Shakespeare's "King Lear."

"We two alone will sing like birds i' the cage…/ …so we'll live,/ And pray, and sing, and tell old tales, and laugh/ At gilded butterflies, and hear poor rogues/ Talk of court news; and we'll talk with them too,/ Who loses and who wins; who's in, who's out;/ And take upon 's the mystery of things,/ As if we were God's spies…" --King Lear, Act V, Scene 3

Several possible interpretations:
#1 "Gilded butterflies" would generally mean someone overdressed or overly fancy in order to appear more than they are, like a courtier. Lear would be comparing his avaricious daughters to gilded butterflies, appearing to be valuable and beautiful on the outside, but are mere whimsical and insubstantial inside
#2 A gilded (covered in gold) butterfly can not fly. This could be a reference to the pursuit of wealth, in the sense that it destroys true nature
#3 King Lear and his beloved daughter Cordelia are being led away to prison. By this time, he is blind and realizes his other two daughters Regan and Goneriel have lied to him and betrayed him for the sake of his fortune. Only Cordelia is loyal to him and only she was honest to him in the beginning - even though at the time her answer angered him. He is talking about life in the court and how they shall spend their days listening to gossip of the court and laughing at their extravagence - like gilded butterflies. It is Lear's hope to live a simple life and come to enjoy the company of his beautiful and loving daughter Cordelia.
Remember, a gilded butterfly cannot fly - it is just as much a prisoner as he is. He realizes that in the beginning, his question to his three daughters and his wealth meant nothing to him - there are no gilded butterflies that can replace a daughter's loyalty and love. It is a beautiful and simple quote.

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Megan Fox Gilded Butterfly Tattoo Meaning


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