How well do you know the lyrics to "Hamilton" (Act 2)?

By: Abi Luftig
Image: Youtube

About This Quiz

Do you know the lyrics to the hottest ticket on Broadway? Find out by taking this quiz!

So what did I miss? What did I miss? My home sweet home, Virginia ____________.

"What I'd Miss" is the first song of Act 2 to showcase the double casting in the play. The actors who played Lafayette and Mulligan in Act 1 are now back as Jefferson and Madison. The audience will go on to discover in later songs that Philip Hamilton bears a striking resemblance to John Laurens, and Maria Reynolds looks an awful lot like Peggy Schuyler.

Look, when Britain __________, we got frisky.

Jefferson is referring to the so-called Whiskey Act of 1791. In dire financial straits after the war, the government knew they needed to collect money via taxes, which was problematic after the Tea Tax. Hamilton believed whiskey to be a luxury tax and therefore the least offensive option. This did not go as he had hoped, and led to the Whiskey Rebellion (1791-1794).

"Winning was easy, young man, governing is harder." "They're being __________." "You have to find a compromise"

Hamilton complains that Jefferson and Madison are being intransigent, or uncompromising and inflexible on principle, just because they don't like him. Washington tells him to find a compromise, which is a nod to the Compromise of 1790, sometimes called The Dinner Table Bargain. As later plays out in "The Room Where It Happens," the bargain was a trade of votes for Hamilton's plan in exchange for moving the capital from NYC to DC.

They think me Macbeth and ambition is my folly. I'm a _________, a pain in the ass, a massive pain.

According to Dictionary.com, a polymath is "a person of great learning in several fields of study." It's speaking to Hamilton's superior intellect and his ability to excel in a variety of fields, including law, finances, and military tactics.

My husband's been doing me wrong, _____ me, _____ me, _______ me.

"Say No To This" describes the beginning of the affair between Hamilton and "Miss Maria Reynolds." Maria Reynolds is played by Jasmine Cephas Jones, who also played Peggy Schuyler in Act 1.

Madison is grappling with the fact that not ev'ry issue can be solved by __________.

It was very hard for Madison to accept the philosophical perils of living in a democracy. He went on record as saying that if everyone got a vote, that “the majority may trespass on the rights of the minority.” He much preferred to reach committee compromises.

God help and forgive me, I wanna build ______ that will outlive me.

"The Room Where It Happened" opens with Burr and Hamilton discussing Claremont Street being renamed after the deceased General Mercer. Lin-Manuel Miranda has gone on record as saying that he researched this fact, and there had been a Claremont Street in New York, but by 1780 it had been renamed Mercer Street in honor of a fallen Revolutionary War General.

War hero Philip Schuyler loses senate seat to young ____________ Aaron Burr.

This line is slightly misleading. Philip Schuyler was a war hero, convincing Oneida, Tuscaroras, and Mohawk American Indians to fight alongside the Colonists. However, Burr was also a well-known and respected military figure, having served in the Continental Army officially as a Lieutenant Colonel and unofficially as an intelligence operative.

And revolution is _________, but now is the time to stay.

Jefferson is arguing to come to France's aid during their rebellion. He went on record, saying that "the tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.” In other words, the messier the rebellion, the better.

Should we honor our treaty, ________ head? Uh, do whatever you want, I'm super dead!

Ben Franklin negotiated a Treaty of Alliance with France on February 6, 1778, which was signed by King Louis XVI. Louis was executed by guillotine on January 21, 1793. When performing this line, Lin-Manuel Miranda mimed pulling a head out of a basket.

Thanks to Hamilton, our cabinet's _________ into factions.

Hamilton sort of *was* responsible for creating the two-party system as we know it. When the Constitution was signed into effect, everyone considered themselves to be Federalists (since they were dealing with redesigning the Federal government). Hamilton's policies caused several to defect and regroup under Jefferson's leadership. This group named themselves the Democratic Republicans.

Which line does Washington NOT say after "one last time"?

Washington urges Hamilton to have a drink with him. He may well have offered him his own whiskey, made from the distillery at Mount Vernon, one of the largest of the time.

Though, in reviewing the incidents of my administration, I am unconscious of _____ error.

This line and the lines that follow are almost exact quotes from Washington's Farewell Address. Hamilton did help draft the address, as did James Madison. The address was published in newspapers on September 19, 1796.

I wasn't aware that was something a person could do. I'm _________ ...

King George sings that he "wasn't aware" a person could just walk away from power, but, historically speaking, he was painfully aware. Losing the Revolutionary War prompted him to write a letter of abdication, his attempt at "yielding his power and stepping away." His advisors persuaded him to stay and work through the peace talks.

How does Hamilton, the short-tempered _________ creator of the Coast Guard...

Protean means "displaying great diversity or variety: versatile,” according to "Merriam-Webster Dictionary." It is taken from the Greek myth of Proteus, a shapeshifter. Burr is commenting on Hamilton's ability to adapt to be what is needed of him, the very quality that Burr is mocked for in "The Election of 1800."

But I have not committed _______ and sullied my good name...

Hamilton is half right. He didn't commit treason by embezzling government funds, but he DID sully his good name by going public with his affair. Historically, there were whispers and rumors about the affair and the embezzlement charges being connected, which led to Hamilton publicly confessing to clear his name on the criminal charges.

When I was ________, a hurricane destroyed my town.

Burr sings about this hurricane in the show's opening song, "Alexander Hamilton." The hurricane in question destroyed Christiansted, St. Croix, on August 30, 1772.

I was ________ when my mother died, she was holding me.

In "Alexander Hamilton," Eliza explains that Alexander's dad left when he was ten, and that two years later would "see Alex and his mother bed-ridden." History notes that Hamilton's mother died on February 19, 1767. It's unknown what disease killed her.

My ______ crime is an amorous connection with his wife...

This line is an actual quote from the real "Reynolds Pamphlet," although Miranda left some words out of the verse. The real version reads "The charge against me is a connection with one James Reynolds for purposes of improper pecuniary speculation. My real crime is an amorous connection with his wife for a considerable time, with his privity and connivance, if not originally brought on by a combination between the husband and wife with the design to extort money from me."

You have married an Icarus, he has ________ too close to the sun.

The lyrics are drawing a comparison between Alexander Hamilton and the Greek legend of Icarus. Icarus was the son of Daedalus. When Icarus was trapped in a labyrinth, Daedalus invented a pair of wax wings to help his son escape. However, Icarus flew too close to the sun, his wax wings melted, and he fell to his death. The tale is used as a warning against hubris, which has been shown to be Hamilton's downfall as well.

You forfeit your place in our bed, you sleep in __________ instead!

"Burn" is the only song Eliza sings completely by herself, to emphasize her isolation as she begins "erasing myself from the narrative." Since role originator Phillipa Soo left the show, Eliza has been played by Lexi Lawson.

Ladies, I'm looking for a Mr. _______ Eacker...

George Eacker was a young lawyer who was an ardent supporter of Aaron Burr. He made a series of speeches insulting Alexander Hamilton, some of which were published in the newspaper. Alexander's eldest son Philip read those papers, discovered the speeches, and challenged Eacker to a duel for his family honor. They dueled on November 22, 1802. Eacker died of consumption less than three years later.

When the time comes, fire your _____ in the air.

Alexander telling Philip to fire into the air isn't as unusual a suggestion as it may sound. Historian Ron Chernow explains that Hamilton was suggesting "a maneuver that French duelists styled a delope. The idea was that the duelist refused to fire first or wasted his shot by firing in the air. If the opponent then shot to kill him, honorable men would regard it as murder."

The bullet entered just above his _____ and lodged in his right arm.

Philip Hamilton was shot above the hip. His father, Alexander Hamilton, was shot "right between his ribs" during his duel.

The moments when you're in so deep, it seems easier to just ________ down.

The Hamiltons did move uptown, in 1802, after the estate was finished being built. Philip Hamilton died a year prior, in 1801, but history does not show whether or not the move uptown was a result of grief or just coincidental timing.

If I could ______ his life, if I could trade his life for mine...

Show creator Lin-Manuel Miranda has begun a project called The Hamilton Mixtape, which will consist of various popular artists singing songs from the show's soundtrack. The album will be released on December 2, 2016. The single of this song, recorded by Kelly Clarkson, was released on November 4, 2016.

Ask him a question, ___ glances off, he obfuscates, he dances.

As previously discussed in "Schuyler Defeated," Burr changed political parties to become a Democratic Republican. He openly admits that he doesn't necessarily agree with the ideals of the party, but simply sees it as a way to gain political power. With this shift in mind, it's easy to understand why Madison and Jefferson don't find Burr to be "very forthcoming on any particular stances."

I have never agreed with Jefferson once, we have fought on like _________ different fronts.

Hamilton sings about endorsing Jefferson. The roles of both Jefferson and the Marquis de Lafayette were originated by Daveed Diggs. Diggs performed his final show for both characters on July 15th, 2016.

I am just a guy in the public eye trying to do _______ for our republic...

The musical sets the duel after the presidential election of 1800, but Burr did not start stirring up trouble with A. Ham until after losing the New York gubernatorial race of 1804. "Your Obedient Servant" was a common ending to letters at the time, abbreviated as Your Obdt. St.

You stand only for yourself, it's what you do. I ____ apologize because it's true.

This line throws back to the earlier duel in this act, in "Blow Us All Away." Eacker tells Philip that he won't apologize because, "I didn't say anything that wasn't true."

I'll be ____ before you know I'm gone.

It can be unclear why this song is called "Best of Wives and Best of Women," since the phrase feels somewhat tacked on at the end. However, it is taken as a direct quote from Hamilton's final letter to his wife (available online in the Congressional archives), in which he wrote, "The consolations of Religion, my beloved, can alone support you; and these you have a right to enjoy. Fly to the bosom of your God and be comforted. With my last idea; I shall cherish the sweet hope of meeting you in a better world. Adieu best of wives and best of Women."

Hamilton was wearing his glasses. Why? If not to take ______ aim?

There are warring theories as to why Hamilton wore his glasses to the duel. Roger G. Kennedy said in his book, "Burr, Hamilton, and Jefferson: A Study in Character," that Hamilton was provoking Burr "to ensure a lethal outcome due to an unconscious imperative… toward assisted suicide.” Ron Chernow postulates in "Alexander Hamilton" that Hamilton was wearing the glasses in order to avoid hitting Burr, a move that required him to see clearly.

History obliterates ____ every picture it paints, it paints me and all my mistakes...

While Hamilton and the company have lines in this song, "The World Was Wide Enough" is primarily performed by Aaron Burr. The role of Burr was originated by Leslie Odom, Jr., who performed his final show as Burr on July 9, 2016. He is perhaps better known to mainstream audiences as recurring character Reverend Curtis Scott on "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit."

I stop wasting time on tears, I live another ______ years, it's not enough.

Eliza did live for fifty years after Alexander died on July 12, 1804. She died on November 9, 1854, at the ripe old age of 97 years old.

I ______ raise hundreds of children, I get to see them growing up.

Eliza did, in fact, open an orphanage in New York City, as well as one in Washington, D.C. Ironically, she also opened the first school in Washington Heights, NYC, the birthplace of show creator Lin-Manuel Miranda.

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