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Quotations about Night

Related Quotes      Dreams      Sleep      Morning      Fear      Light

It was a night so beautiful that your soul seemed hardly able to bear the prison of the body. ~W. Somerset Maugham, The Moon and Sixpence, 1919

Night time is really the best time to work. All the ideas are there to be yours because everyone else is asleep. ~Catherine O'Hara

I often think that the night is more alive and more richly colored than the day. ~Vincent Van Gogh

The iron tongue of Time has told the surrounding darkness that midnight is upon the earth. I am in my room alone. A burning taper is before me, but its light is too feeble to affect the distant objects.... I turn my face from the light, and looking into some dark corner, my mind is led to wander in that mysterious world created by the genius of Dante. Soon, this little taper will flicker in the socket, and leave behind it a world of gloom.—Is it not so with life? ~Charles Lanman, "Musings," 1840

There they stand, the innumerable stars, shining in order like a living hymn, written in light. ~N.P. Willis

The night walked down the sky with the moon in her hand. ~Frederick L. Knowles

There are nights when the wolves are silent and only the moon howls. ~George Carlin, Brain Droppings, 1997

Most glorious night!
Thou wert not sent for slumber!
~Lord Byron, Childe Harold

Night is a world lit by itself. ~Antonio Porchia, Voces, 1943, translated from Spanish by W.S. Merwin

Night, the beloved. Night, when words fade and things come alive. When the destructive analysis of day is done, and all that is truly important becomes whole and sound again. When man reassembles his fragmentary self and grows with the calm of a tree. ~Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

By night, an atheist half believes in God. ~Edward Young, Night Thoughts

O radiant Dark! O darkly fostered ray!
Thou hast a joy too deep for shallow Day.
~George Eliot, The Spanish Gypsy

Moonlight is sculpture. ~Nathaniel Hawthorne

Metaphor for the night sky: A trillion asterisks and no explanations. ~Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com

Research is the name given the crystal formed when the night's worry is added to the day's sweat. ~Martin H. Fischer

Twilight drops her curtain down, and pins it with a star. ~Lucy Maud Montgomery

Silently, one by one, in the infinite meadows of heaven,
Blossomed the lovely stars, the forget-me-nots of the angels.
~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Evangeline

What I take from my nights, I add to my days. ~Leon de Rotrou, "Vencelas," translated

Mine is the night, with all her stars. ~Edward Young

One summer night, out on a flat headland, all but surrounded by the waters of the bay, the horizons were remote and distant rims on the edge of space. Millions of stars blazed in darkness, and on the far shore a few lights burned in cottages. Otherwise there was no reminder of human life. My companion and I were alone with the stars: the misty river of the Milky Way flowing across the sky, the patterns of the constellations standing out bright and clear, a blazing planet low on the horizon. It occurred to me that if this were a sight that could be seen only once in a century, this little headland would be thronged with spectators. But it can be seen many scores of nights in any year, and so the lights burned in the cottages and the inhabitants probably gave not a thought to the beauty overhead; and because they could see it almost any night, perhaps they never will. ~Rachel Carson

If the Stars should appear one night in a thousand years, how would men believe and adore; and preserve for many generations the remembrance of the city of God which had been shown! But every night come out these envoys of beauty, and light the universe with their admonishing smile. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

O wild and wondrous midnight,
There is a might in thee
To make the charmed body
Almost like spirit be,
And give it some faint glimpses
Of immortality.
~James Russell Lowell, Midnight

I cannot walk through the suburbs in the solitude of the night without thinking that the night pleases us because it suppresses idle details, just as our memory does. ~Jorge Luis Borges

There is something haunting in the light of the moon; it has all the dispassionateness of a disembodied soul, and something of its inconceivable mystery. ~Joseph Conrad

Nothing like a nighttime stroll to give you ideas. ~J.K. Rowling, "The Egg and The Eye," Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, 2000, spoken by the character Mad-Eye Moody

...Nature's self is hush'd,
And, but a scatter'd leaf, which rustles thro'
The tick-wove foliage, not a sound is heard
To break the midnight air; tho' the rais'd ear,
Intensely listening, drinks in every breath.
How deep the silence, yet how loud the praise!
But are they silent all? or is there not
A Tongue in every star that talks with man,
And wooes him to be wise? nor wooes in vain:
This dead of midnight is the noon of thought,
And wisdom mounts her zenith with the stars.
~Anna Lætitia Aikin, "A Summer Evening's Meditation"

At this still hour the self-collected soul
Turns inward, and beholds a stranger there
Of high descent, and more than mortal rank;
An embryo God; a spark of fire divine,
Which must burn on for ages, when the sun
(Fair transitory creature of a day!)
Has clos'd his golden eye, and wrapt in shades
Forgets his wonted journey thro' the east.
~Anna Lætitia Aikin, "A Summer Evening's Meditation"

Night is the blotting paper for many sorrows. ~Author Unknown

Learn to reverence night and to put away the vulgar fear of it, for, with the banishment of night from the experience of man, there vanishes as well a religious emotion, a poetic mood, which gives depth to the adventure of humanity. ~Henry Beston

When the moon, after covering herself with darkness as in sorrow, at last throws off the garments of her widowhood, she does not at once expose herself impudently to the public gaze; but for a time remains veiled in a transparent cloud, till she gradually acquires courage to endure the looks and admiration of beholders. ~Augustus William Hare and Julius Charles Hare, Guesses at Truth, by Two Brothers, 1827

The light is out—I am now seated at my window, gazing upon the city. There is such a calm in the heavens and upon the earth, I almost fear the world will never wake again.... What an impressive sight! a slumbering city. The beating of its mighty heart has ceased. Filled as it is with the power of man, it is now as helpless as an infant on its mother's breast. ~Charles Lanman, "Musings," 1840

In my age, as in my youth, night brings me many a deep remorse. I realize that from the cradle up I have been like the rest of the race — never quite sane in the night. ~Mark Twain

To me at least was never evening yet
But seemed far beautifuller than its day.
~Robert Browning, The Ring and the Book

For the happiest life, rigorously plan your days, leave your nights open to chance. ~Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook, 1966

      [A]nother clock flings its heavy clang over the slumbering town, with so full and distinct a sound.... You count the strokes — one — two, and there they cease....
      If you could choose an hour of wakefulness out of the whole night, it would be this. Since your sober bedtime, at eleven, you have had rest enough to take off the pressure of yesterday's fatigue; while before you, till the sun comes... to brighten your window, there is almost the space of a summer night; one hour to be spent in thought, with the mind's eye half shut, and two in pleasant dreams, and two in that strangest of enjoyments, the forgetfulness alike of joy and woe.... Yesterday has already vanished among the shadows of the past; to‑morrow has not yet emerged from the future. You have found an intermediate space, where the business of life does not intrude; where the passing moment lingers, and becomes truly the present; a spot where Father Time, when he thinks nobody is watching him, sits down by the way side to take breath. Oh, that he would fall asleep, and let mortals live on without growing older!
      ~Nathaniel Hawthorne, "The Haunted Mind," 1835

The day has eyes; the night has ears. ~David Fergusson

No sight is more provocative of awe than is the night sky. ~Llewelyn Powys, quoted in Highs by Alex J. Packer

Night is a dead monotonous period under a roof; but in the open world it passes lightly, with its stars and dews and perfumes, and the hours are marked by changes in the face of Nature. What seems a kind of temporal death to people choked between walls and curtains, is only a light and living slumber to the man who sleeps afield. ~Robert Louis Stevenson

So dear night the half of life is,
And the fairest half indeed.
~Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Night's black Mantle covers all alike. ~Guillaume de Salluste Du Bartas

How magnificent the city is by the June moonlight! — after the streets are empty and silent. ~Byron Caldwell Smith, letter to Kate Stephens

The cloud shadows of midnight possess their own repose... ~Percy Bysshe Shelley

Some praise the Lord for Light,
The living spark;
I thank God for the Night
The healing dark.
~Robert William Service, "Weary"

Dawn seemed to follow midnight with indecent haste. ~J.K. Rowling

Night has become painful for me. It brings to light the regrets of the day. ~Grey Livingston

Look how the pale queen of the silent night
Doth cause the ocean to attend upon her....
~Charles Best, "A Sonnet of the Moon"

The stars are the street lights of eternity. ~Author Unknown

A man is a very small thing, and the night is very large and full of wonders. ~Edward Plunkett

How like a queen comes forth the lonely Moon
From the slow opening curtains of the clouds
Walking in beauty to her midnight throne!
~George Croly, Diana

To seek the breast of darkness and be suckled by the night. ~Paul Simon, "A Poem on the Underground Wall"

Fooey! The porchlight is burnt out, and I can't see whether it's dark outside or not. ~Dave Beard

Out of the wood of thoughts that grows by night
To be cut down by the sharp axe of light,—
~Edward Thomas (1878-1917), "Cock-crow"

How long the night seems to one kept awake by pain. ~Bernard-Joseph Saurin, Blanche et Guiscard, translated from French

The night is forever. I can't sleep.
The clear moon is so bright, so bright.
I almost think I hear a voice call me,
and to the empty sky say, Yes?
~Zi Ye, translated

Whoever thinks of going to bed before twelve o'clock is a scoundrel. ~Samuel Johnson

There is something in the nature of silence which affects me deeply. Why it is I know not; but I do know that I love to be alone at such an hour as this. I love to forget the outward world and hold communion with the beings of the mind. ~Charles Lanman, "Musings," 1840

Don't try to solve serious matters in the middle of the night. ~Philip K. Dick

Moon hangs, almost full
pieces of cloud scatter,
glide in soft, summer breeze.
We lay in our meadow
listening to the sound of night....
~Daniel James Burt, "Meadow Again"

It is one of life's bitterest truths that bedtime so often arrives just when things are really getting interesting. ~Lemony Snicket

For my part I know nothing with any certainty, but the sight of the stars makes me dream. ~Vincent Van Gogh

Day hath put on his jacket, and around
His burning bosom buttoned it with stars.
~Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr., "Evening"

You can't stand up to the night until you understand what's hiding in its shadows. ~Charles De Lint

[I]t seemed as if the streets were absorbed by the sky, and the night were all in the air. ~Charles Dickens, David Copperfield

...So let us welcome peaceful evening in. ~William Cowper

A hand omnipotent, in endless space,
From chaos, formed a world and found a place,
Where, through the countless ages, yet unborn,
A star might shine from dusk to rosy morn....
~Author Unknown, "The Fall of Man"

In the country the darkness of night is friendly and familiar, but in a city, with its blaze of lights, it is unnatural, hostile and menacing. It is like a monstrous vulture that hovers, biding its time. ~Somerset Maugham

Stars are the daisies that begem
The blue fields of the sky.
~D.M. Moir

I seldom went to bed before two or three o'clock in the morning, on the theory that if anything of interest were to happen to a young man it would almost certainly happen late at night. ~E.B. White (1899–1985)

The night was clear and frosty, all ebony of shadow and silver of snowy slope; big stars were shining over the silent fields; here and there the dark pointed firs stood up with snow powdering their branches and the wind whistling through them. ~L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables

Every sleepy boy and girl in every bed around the world can hear the stars up in the sky whispering a lullaby. ~Mary Chapin Carpenter

Press close, bare-bosomed Night! Press close, magnetic,
nourishing Night!
Night of south winds! Night of the large, few stars!
Still, nodding Night! Mad, naked, Summer Night!
~Walt Whitman

In a real dark night of the soul, it is always three o'clock in the morning, day after day. ~F. Scott Fitzgerald

Sometimes I lie awake at night, and I ask, "Where have I gone wrong?" Then a voice says to me, "This is going to take more than one night." ~Charles M. Schulz

I arise from dreams of thee
In the first sweet sleep of night
When the winds are breathing low,
And the stars are shining bright.
~Percy Bysshe Shelley

...I thought I would step out into the cool night-air.... It was a glorious night. The moon had sunk and left the quiet earth alone with the stars.... They awe us, these strange stars, so cold, so clear.... [I]t seems so full of comfort and of strength, the night. In its great presence, our small sorrows creep away, ashamed. The day has been so full of fret and care, and our hearts have been so full of evil and of bitter thoughts, and the world has seemed so hard and wrong to us. Then Night, like some great loving mother, gently lays her hand upon our fevered head, and turns our little tear-stained faces up to hers, and smiles; and, though she does not speak, we know what she would say, and lay our hot flushed cheek against her bosom, and the pain is gone. ~Jerome K. Jerome, Three Men in a Boat (To Say Nothing of the Dog), 1889

Night's heart is full of pity for us: she cannot ease our aching; she takes our hand in hers, and the little world grows very small and very far away beneath us, and, borne on her dark wings, we pass for a moment into a mightier Presence than her own, and in the wondrous light of that great Presence, all human life lies like a book before us, and we know that Pain and Sorrow are but the angels of God. ~Jerome K. Jerome, Three Men in a Boat (To Say Nothing of the Dog), 1889

For the night shows stars and women in a better light. ~Lord Byron, Don Juan

And the night shall be filled with music,
And the cares that infest the day
Shall fold their tents like the Arabs
And as silently steal away.
~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, The Day Is Done

Tonight's forecast: Dark. Continued dark tonight turning to partly light in the morning. ~George Carlin

We spend our midday sweat, our midnight oil;
We tire the night in thought, the day in toil.
~Francis Quarles

Give me my Romeo; and, when I shall die,
Take him and cut him out in little stars,
And he will make the face of heaven so fine
That all the world will be in love with night
And pay no worship to the garish sun.
~William Shakespeare

Beware thoughts that come in the night. They aren't turned properly; they come in askew, free of sense and restriction, deriving from the most remote of sources. ~William Trogdon

Cherries of the night are riper
Than the cherries pluckt at noon...
In the cherry pluckt at night,
With the dew of summer swelling,
There's a juice of pure delight,
Cool, dark, sweet, divinely smelling...
~Robert Graves

I rise and turn back.... leaving the rest of the world to coyotes who are now running across the mountain together, howling and yipping behind me, calling for the frozen night to come. ~Craig Childs, The Animal Dialogues: Uncommon Encounters in the Wild

It was a lovely evening. Night was out hunting on her black steed, and the long cloud mane fluttered on the wind. I stood at my window watching the moon. Is there really a "man in the moon?"... When I was little they told me that the moon was a fruit, and that when it was ripe, it was picked and laid away, amid a vast collection of old full moons, in a great bureau, which stood at the end of the world, where it is nailed up with boards. ~Heinrich Heine, "The Hartz Journey" (1824), Pictures of Travel, translated from German by Charles Godfrey Leland, 1855

And from my heart poured out the feeling of love;—it poured forth with wild longing into the broad night. The flowers in the garden beneath my window breathed a stronger perfume. Perfumes are the feelings of flowers, and as the human heart feels most powerful emotions in the night, when it believes itself to be alone and unperceived, so also do the flowers, soft-minded, yet ashamed, appear to await for concealing darkness, that they may give themselves wholly up to their feelings, and breathe them out in sweet odours. ~Heinrich Heine, "The Hartz Journey" (1824), Pictures of Travel, translated from German by Charles Godfrey Leland, 1855

Sometimes on lonely nights the man in the moon is my best friend. ~Terri Guillemets

By day each soul must walk within its shadow.
Only night can make us whole again...
~Nicholas Gordon, www.poemsforfree.com

How lovely are the portals of the night,
When stars come out to watch the daylight die.
~Thomas Cole, Twilight

There is one ghastly hour, between the midnight and the dawn, an hour through which I have passed again and again, when the veils of seeming and circumstance are stripped away from the soul, and one sees oneself as one is, and not as one appears to the outer world. It is after a first sleep, I think, that these wakeful moments of an over-stimulated consciousness are most overwhelming. On laying our heads upon the pillow at the beginning of night, we are still possessed by images of the cheerful day: soothed by not unflattering intercourse with friends, our souls narcotised, so to speak, by the influences of music, art and literature—"drawing the curtain of our fancy close between us and the coldness of the world." But that first short sleep puts a blank between us and the day. We start straight out of nothingness, and face ourselves. And then we see ourselves indeed. We remember the inexpressible meannesses of which we have been guilty, the base, ignoble deeds, the failures of our will, the weaknesses of our heart, the cowardice, the bitter, ingrained badness of our whole nature, and bad as we are, we stand appalled at the revelation. The anger of God and the contempt of man lie upon us with a weight heavier than we can bear. It seems as if our hearts lay open, naked and ashamed, to the eye of the whole human race. At such moments—not unknown I think, to most of us—we surely suffer something of what is meant by the pains of hell. ~Adeline Sergeant, The Story of a Penitent Soul: Being the Private Papers of Mr. Stephen Dart, Late Minister at Lynnbridge in the County of Lincoln, 1892

The iron tongue of midnight hath told twelve.
Lovers, to bed; 'tis almost fairy time.
~William Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night's Dream

[O]ne moon lights a thousand forevers... ~Meng Chiao

A house is never still in darkness to those who listen intently; there is a whispering in distant chambers, an unearthly hand presses the snib of the window, the latch rises. Ghosts were created when the first man woke in the night. ~J.M. Barrie, The Little Minister, 1891

Above the tower — a lone, twice-sized moon.
On the cold river passing night-filled homes,
It scatters restless gold across waves...
Empty peaks, silence: among sparse stars,
Not yet flawed, it drifts. Pine and cinnamon
Spreading in my old garden.... All light,
All ten thousand miles at once in its light!
~Tu Fu, "Full Moon," translated by David Hinton

[T]he sun moves far too slowly, I would fain lash on his steeds that they might advance more rapidly.—But when he sinks hissing in the sea, and the night rises with her great eyes, oh! then true pleasure first thrills through me like a new life, the evening breezes lie like flattering maidens on my wild heart, and the stars wink to me, and I rise and sweep over the little earth and the little thoughts of mankind. ~Heinrich Heine, "Ideas: Book Le Grand," 1826, translated from German by Charles Godfrey Leland, Pictures of Travel, 1855

'Tis midnight now. The bend and broken moon,
Batter'd and black, as from a thousand battles,
Hangs silent on the purple walls of Heaven.
~Joaquin Miller, Ina

Tomorrow night is nothing but one long sleepless wrestle with yesterday's omissions and regrets. ~William Faulkner

The night is dark and velvety,
All Nature seems asleep;
The moon has covered, well, her face,
As if in sorrow, deep.
~Gertrude Tooley Buckingham, "The Prayer of the Moon" (1940s)

We wake in the night, to stereophonic silence. ~Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook, 1960

That orbed maiden, with white fire laden,
Whom mortals call the moon.
~Percy Bysshe Shelley, The Cloud

Day, like a weary pilgrim, had reached the western gate of heaven, and Evening stooped down to unloose the latchets of his sandal shoon. ~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Hyperion

Midnight! the outpost of advancing day!
The frontier town and citadel of night!
~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Two Rivers

Soon as midnight brought on the dusky hour
Friendliest to sleep and silence.
~John Milton, Paradise Lost

Thank Heaven, the sun has gone in, and I don't have to go out and enjoy it. ~Logan Pearsall Smith

The young moon has fed
Her exhausted horn
With the sunset's fire.
~Percy Bysshe Shelley

These blessed candles of the night. ~William Shakespeare, referring to stars, Merchant of Venice

With finger on her solemn lip,
Night hushed the shadowy earth.
~Margaret Deland

It seemed to be a necessary ritual that he should prepare himself for sleep by meditating under the solemnity of the night sky... a mysterious transaction between the infinity of the soul and the infinity of the universe. ~Victor Hugo

Acknowledgment:  Thank you very much to John C. Shepard of the GIGA Quotes Home Page for sharing some of the wonderful quotations on this page!

Related Quotations:  DreamsSleepMorningFearLightSkySolitude

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Last modified 2015 Sep 23 Wed 14:19 PDT

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