Night (or nighttime) is the period of time when the sun is below the horizon. The opposite of night is day (or "daytime" to distinguish it from "day" as used for a 24-hour period). The start and end times of night vary based on factors such as season, latitude, longitude and timezone. At any given time, one side of the planet Earth is bathed in light from the Sun (the daytime) and the other side of the Earth is in the shadow caused by the Earth blocking the light of the sun. This shadow is what we call the darkness of night.
- Night comes, world-jewelled, * * *
The stars rush forth in myriads as to wage
War with the lines of Darkness; and the moon,
Pale ghost of Night, comes haunting the cold earth
After the sun's red sea-death—quietless.
- Philip James Bailey, Festus (1813), scene Garden and Bower by the Sea.
- I love night more than day—she is so lovely;
But I love night the most because she brings
My love to me in dreams which scarcely lie.
- Philip James Bailey, Festus (1813), scene Water and Wood. Midnight.
- Most glorious night!
Thou wert not sent for slumber!
- For the night
Shows stars and women in a better light.
- Dark the Night, with breath all flowers,
And tender broken voice that fills
With ravishment the listening hours,—
Liquid ripples, and soft ring-dove cooings
In low-toned rhythm that love's aching stills!
Dark the night
Yet is she bright,
For in her dark she brings the mystic star,
Trembling yet strong, as is the voice of love,
From some unknown afar.
- George Eliot, Spanish Gypsy (1868), Song, Book I.
- O radiant Dark! O darkly fostered ray!
Thou hast a joy too deep for shallow Day.
- George Eliot, Spanish Gypsy (1868), Book I.
- The watch-dog's voice that bay'd the whispering wind,
And the loud laugh that spoke the vacant mind:
These all in sweet confusion sought the shade,
And fill'd each pause the nightingale had made.
- Oliver Goldsmith, The Deserted Village (1770), line 121.
- O thievish Night,
Why shouldst thou, but for some felonious end,
In thy dark lantern thus close up the stars,
That nature hung in heaven, and filled their lamps
With everlasting oil, to give due light
To the misled and lonely traveller?
- * * * And when night
Darkens the streets, then wander forth the sons
Of Belial, flown with insolence and wine.
- Where eldest Night
And Chaos, ancestors of nature, hold
Eternal anarchy, amidst the noise
Of endless wars, and by confusion stand.
- * * * For now began
Night with her sullen wings to double-shade
The desert; fowls in their clay nests were couch'd,
And now wild beasts came forth, the woods to roam.
- Darkness now rose,
As daylight sunk, and brought in low'ring Night
Her shadowy offspring.
- Silence, ye wolves! while Ralph to Cynthia howls,
And makes night hideous;—Answer him, ye owls!
- Alexander Pope, The Dunciad (1813), Book III, line 165.
- In the dead vast and middle of the night.
- 'Tis now the very witching time of night,
When churchyards yawn and hell itself breathes out
Contagion to this world.
- And night is fled,
Whose pitchy mantle overveil'd the earth.
- I must become a borrower of the night
For a dark hour or twain.
- Come, seeling night,
Skarf up the tender eye of pitiful day;
And with thy bloody and invisible hand,
Cancel and tear to pieces that great bond
Which keeps me pale!
- Light thickens; and the crow
Makes wing to the rooky wood:
Good things of the day begin to droop and drowse;
Whiles night's black agents to their preys do rouse.
- The night is long that never finds the day.
- Now the hungry lion roars,
And the wolf behowls the moon;
Whilst the heavy ploughman snores,
All with weary task foredone.
- This is the night
That either makes me or fordoes me quite.
- Come, gentle night, come, loving, blackbrow'd night.
- How beautiful this night! the balmiest sigh
Which Vernal Zephyrs breathe in evening's ear
Were discord to the speaking quietude
That wraps this moveless scene. Heaven's ebon vault,
Studded with stars, unutterably bright,
Through which the moon's unclouded grandeur rolls,
Seems like a canopy which love has spread
To curtain her sleeping world.
- Percy Bysshe Shelley, Queen Mab (1813), Part IV.
- Night, sable goddess! from her ebon throne,
In rayless majesty, now stretches forth
Her leaden sceptre o'er a slumbering world.
Silence, how dead! and darkness, how profound!
Nor eye, nor list'ning ear, an object finds;
Creation sleeps. 'Tis as the general pulse
Of life stood still, and nature made a pause;
An awful pause! prophetic of her end.
- Edward Young, Night Thoughts (1742-1745), Night I, line 18.
- How is night's sable mantle labor'd o'er,
How richly wrought with attributes divine!
What wisdom shines! what love! this midnight pomp,
This gorgeous arch, with golden worlds inlaid
Built with divine ambition!
- Edward Young, Night Thoughts (1742-1745), Night IV, line 385.
Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical QuotationsEdit
- Quotes reported in Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations (1922), p. 554-57.
- Night is a stealthy, evil Raven,
Wrapt to the eyes in his black wings.
- Thomas Bailey Aldrich, Day and Night.
- Wan night, the shadow goer, came stepping in.
- Beowulf, III.
- When it draws near to witching time of night.
- Robert Blair, The Grave, line 55.
- The Night has a thousand eyes,
The Day but one;
Yet the light of the bright world dies
With the dying sun.
- F. W. Bourdillon, Light.
- The stars are forth, the moon above the tops
Of the snow-shining mountains—Beautiful!
I linger yet with Nature, for the night
Hath been to me a more familiar face
Than that of man; and in her starry shade
Of dim and solitary loveliness
I learn'd the language of another world.
- Lord Byron, Manfred, Act III, scene 4.
- Night's black Mantle covers all alike.
- Guillaume de Salluste Du Bartas, Divine Weekes and Workes, First Week, First Day, line 562.
- A late lark twitters from the quiet skies:
And from the west,
Where the sun, his day's work ended,
Lingers as in content,
There falls on the old, gray city
An influence luminous and serene,
A shining peace.
- William Ernest Henley, Margaritæ Sorori.
- The smoke ascends
In a rosy-and-golden haze. The spires
Shine and are changed. In the valley
Shadows rise. The lark sings on. The sun
Closing his benediction,
Sinks, and the darkening air
Thrills with the sense of the triumphing night,—
Night with train of stars
And her great gift of sleep.
- William Ernest Henley, Margaritæ Sorori.
- Now deep in ocean sunk the lamp of light,
And drew behind the cloudy vale of night.
- Homer, The Iliad, Book VIII, line 605. Pope's translation.
- At night, to his own dark fancies a prey,
He lies like a hedgehog rolled up the wrong way,
Tormenting himself with his prickles.
- Thomas Hood, Miss Kilmansegg and her precious Leg.
- Watchman, what of the night?
- Isaiah, XXI. 11.
- Night, when deep sleep falleth on men.
- Job, IV. 13; XXXIII. 15.
- The night cometh when no man can work.
- John, IX. 4.
- 'Tis the witching hour of night,
Orbed is the moon and bright,
And the stars they glisten, glisten,
Seeming with bright eyes to listen—
For what listen they?
- John Keats, A Prophecy, line 1.
- I heard the trailing garments of the Night
Sweep through her marble halls.
- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Hymn to the Night.
- O holy Night! from thee I learn to bear
What man has borne before!
Thou layest thy fingers on the lips of Care,
And they complain no more.
- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Hymn to the Night.
- Then stars arise, and the night is holy.
- 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.
- God makes sech nights, all white an' still
Fur'z you can look or listen,
Moonshine an' snow on field an' hill,
All silence an' all glisten.
- James Russell Lowell, The Courtin'.
- Night hath a thousand eyes.
- John Lyly, Maydes Metamorphose, Act III, scene 1.
- Quiet night, that brings
Rest to the labourer, is the outlaw's day,
In which he rises early to do wrong,
And when his work is ended dares not sleep.
- Philip Massinger, The Guardian, Act II, scene 4.
- A night of tears! for the gusty rain
Had ceased, but the eaves were dripping yet;
And the moon look'd forth, as tho' in pain,
With her face all white and wet.
- Owen Meredith (Lord Lytton), The Wanderer, Book II, The Portrait.
- Night is the time for rest;
How sweet, when labours close,
To gather round an aching breast
The curtain of repose,
Stretch the tired limbs, and lay the head
Down on our own delightful bed!
- James Montgomery, Night, Stanza 1.
- Then awake! the heavens look bright, my dear;
'Tis never too late for delight, my dear;
And the best of all ways
To lengthen our days
Is to steal a few hours from the night, my dear.
- Thomas Moore, The Young May Moon.
- But we that have but span-long life,
The thicker must lay on the pleasure;
And since time will not stay,
We'll add night to the day,
Thus, thus we'll fill the measure.
- Duet printed 1795. Probably of earlier date.
- There never was night that had no morn.
- Dinah Craik, The Golden Gate.
- The wind was a torrent of darkness among the gusty trees,
The moon was a ghostly galleon tossed upon cloudy seas,
The road was a ribbon of moonlight over the purple moor,
And the highwayman came riding.
- Alfred Noyes, The Highwayman.
- Day is ended, Darkness shrouds
The shoreless seas and lowering clouds.
- Thomas Love Peacock, Rhododaphne, Canto V, line 264.
- O Night, most beautiful and rare!
Thou giv'st the heavens their holiest hue,
And through the azure fields of air
Bring'st down the gentle dew.
- Thomas Buchanan Read, Night.
- Ce que j'ôte à mes nuits, je l'ajoute à mes jours.
- What I take from my nights, I add to my days.
- Ascribed to Rotrou in Venceslas (1647).
- Qu'une nuit paraît longue à la douleur qui veille!
- How long the night seems to one kept awake by pain.
- Bernard-Joseph Saurin, Blanche et Guiscard, V, 5.
- On dreary night let lusty sunshine fall.
- Friedrich Schiller, Pompeii and Herculaneum.
- To all, to each, a fair good night,
And pleasing dreams; and slumbers light.
- Walter Scott, Marmion (1808), Canto VI. Last lines.
- Swiftly walk over the western wave,
Spirit of Night!
- Percy Bysshe Shelley, To Night.
- How beautiful is night!
A dewy freshness fills the silent air;
No mist obscures, nor cloud nor speck nor stain
Breaks the serene of heaven.
- Robert Southey, Thalaba, Book I.
- Dead sounds at night come from the inmost hills,
Like footsteps upon wool.
- Alfred Tennyson, Ænone, Stanza 20.
- I was heavy with the even,
When she fit her glimmering tapers
Round the day's dead sanctities.
- Francis Thompson, Hound of Heaven, line 84.
- Now black and deep the Night begins to fall,
A shade immense! Sunk in the quenching Gloom,
Magnificent and vast, are heaven and earth.
Order confounded lies; all beauty void,
Distinction lost, and gay variety
One universal blot: such the fair power
Of light, to kindle and create the whole.
- James Thomson, The Seasons, Autumn (1730), line 113.
- Come, drink the mystic wine of Night,
Brimming with silence and the stars;
While earth, bathed in this holy light,
Is seen without its scars.
- Louis Untermeyer, The Wine of Night.
- When, upon orchard and lane, breaks the white foam of the Spring
When, in extravagant revel, the Dawn, a Bacchante upleaping,
Spills, on the tresses of Night, vintages golden and red
When, as a token at parting, munificent Day for remembrance,
Gives, unto men that forget, Ophirs of fabulous ore.
- William Watson, Hymn to the Sea, Part III. 12.
- Mysterious night! when our first parent knew
Thee from report divine, and heard thy name,
Did he not tremble for this lovely frame,
This glorious canopy of light and blue?
- Joseph Blanco White, Night and Death.
- The summer skies are darkly blue,
The days are still and bright,
And Evening trails her robes of gold
Through the dim halls of Night.
- Sarah H. P. Whitman, Summer's Call.
- Night begins to muffle up the day.
- Withers, Mistresse of Philarete.
- Mine is the night, with all her stars.
- Edward Young, Paraphrase on Job, line 147.