Oceans are major bodies of saline water, and the principal component of the hydrosphere. Approximately 71% of the Earth's surface (~3.6×108 km2) is covered by ocean, a continuous body of water that is customarily divided into several principal oceans and smaller seas.
- That make the meadows green; and, poured round all,
Old Ocean's gray and melancholy waste,—
Are but the solemn decorations all
Of the great tomb of man.
- William Cullen Bryant, Thanatopsis (1817-1821), line 43.
- Once more upon the waters! yet once more!
And the waves bound beneath me as a steed
That knows his rider.
- Roll on, thou deep and dark blue Ocean—roll!
Ten thousand fleets sweep over thee in vain;
Man marks the earth with ruin—his control
Stops with the shore.
- Time writes no wrinkle on thine azure brow,
Such as Creation's dawn beheld, thou rollest now.
- The image of Eternity—the throne
Of the Invisible; even from out thy slime
The monsters of the deep are made; each zone
Obeys thee; thou goest forth, dread, fathomless, alone.
- And I have loved thee, Ocean! and my joy
Of youthful sports was on thy breast to be
Borne, like thy bubbles, onward; from a boy
I wanton'd with thy breakers.
* * * * * *
And laid my hand upon thy mane—as I do here.
- There's not a sea the passenger e'er pukes in,
Turns up more dangerous breakers than the Euxine.
- The breaking waves dashed high
On a stern and rock-bound coast,
And the woods against a stormy sky,
Their giant branches toss'd.
- Felicia Hemans, The Landing of the Pilgrim Fathers in New England (1826).
- Praise the sea, but keep on land.
- George Herbert, Jacula Prudentum (1651).
- He laid his hand upon "the Ocean's mane,"
And played familiar with his hoary locks.
- Robert Pollok, The Course of Time (1827), Book IV, line 689.
- The precious stone set in the silver sea.
- I have seen
A curious child, who dwelt upon a tract
Of inland ground, applying to his ear
The convolutions of a smooth-lipped shell;
To which, in silence hushed, his very soul
Listened intensely; and his countenance soon
Brightened with joy; for from within were heard
Murmurings, whereby the monitor expressed
Mysterious union with its native sea.
- William Wordsworth, The Excursion (1814), Book IV.
- Ocean into tempest wrought,
To waft a feather, or to drown a fly.
- Edward Young, Night Thoughts (1742-1745), Night I, line 153.
Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations
- Quotes reported in Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations (1922), p. 554-57.
- Ye waves
That o'er th' interminable ocean wreathe
Your crisped smiles.
- Æschylus, Prometheus Chained, line 95. "The multitudinous laughter of the sea." As translation. by De Quincey. "The many-twinkling smile of ocean," is used by Keble—Christian Year. 2nd Sunday After Trinity.
- The sea heaves up, hangs loaded o'er the land,
Breaks there, and buries its tumultuous strength.
- Robert Browning, Luria, Act I.
- What are the wild waves saying,
Sister, the whole day long,
That ever amid our playing
I hear but their low, lone song?
- Joseph E. Carpenter, What are the Wild Waves Saying?
- I never was on the dull, tame shore,
But I loved the great sea more and more.
- Barry Cornwall, The Sea.
- The sea! the sea! the open sea!
The blue, the fresh, the ever free!
Without a mark, without a bound,
It runneth the earth's wide regions round;
It plays with the clouds; it mocks the skies;
Or like a cradled creature lies.
- Barry Cornwall, The Sea.
- Behold the Sea,
The opaline, the plentiful and strong,
Yet beautiful as is the rose in June,
Fresh as the trickling rainbow of July;
Sea full of food, the nourisher of kinds,
Purger of earth, and medicine of men;
Creating a sweet climate by my breath,
Washing out harms and griefs from memory,
And, in my mathematic ebb and flow,
Giving a hint of that which changes not.
- Ralph Waldo Emerson, Sea Shore.
- The sea is flowing ever,
The land retains it never.
- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Hikmet Nameh, Book of Proverbs.
- Alone I walked on the ocean strand,
A pearly shell was in my hand;
I stooped, and wrote upon the sand
My name, the year, the day.
As onward from the spot I passed,
One lingering look behind I cast,
A wave came rolling high and fast,
And washed my lines away.
- Hannah Flagg Gould, A Name in the Sand.
- Full many a gem of purest ray serene,
The dark unfathomed caves of ocean bear.
- Thomas Gray, Elegy in a Country Churchyard, Stanza 14. Original found in a poem by Cardinal Barberini.
- There is many a rich stone laid up in the bowells of the earth, many a fair pearle in the bosome of the sea, that never was seene nor never shall bee.
- Bishop Hall, Contemplations, Veil of Moses, I, VI, p. 872. See Quarterly Review, No, XXII, p. 314.
- The hollow sea-shell, which for years hath stood
On dusty shelves, when held against the ear
Proclaims its stormy parent, and we hear
The faint, far murmur of the breaking flood.
We hear the sea. The Sea? It is the blood
In our own veins, impetuous and near.
- Eugene Lee Hamilton, Sonnet, Sea-shell Murmurs.
- The sea appears all golden
Beneath the sun-lit sky.
- Heinrich Heine, Book of Songs, New Poems, Seraphina, No. 15.
- Of the loud resounding sea.
- Homer, The Iliad, Book IX. 182.
- Whilst breezy waves toss up their silvery spray.
- Thomas Hood, Ode to the Moon.
- Quoth the Ocean, "Dawn! O fairest, clearest,
Touch me with thy golden fingers bland;
For I have no smile till thou appearest
For the lovely land."
- Jean Ingelow, Winstanley, The Apology.
- The burden of the desert of the sea.
- Isaiah, XXI. 1.
- Come o'er the moonlit sea,
The waves are brightly glowing.
- Charles Jefferys, The Moonlit Sea.
- Tut! the best thing I know between France and England is the sea.
- Douglas Jerrold, Jerrold's Wit, The Anglo-French Alliance.
- Love the sea? I dote upon it—from the beach.
- Douglas Jerrold, Specimen of Jerrold's Wit, Love of the Sea.
- Hitherto thou shalt come, but no further; and here shall thy proud waves be stayed.
- Job, XXXVIII. 11.
- He maketh the deep to boil like a pot.
- Job. XLI. 31.
- Past are three summers since she first beheld
The ocean; all around the child await
Some exclamation of amazement here:
She coldly said, her long-lasht eyes abased,
Is this the mighty ocean? is this all?
- Walter Savage Landor, Gebir, Book V
- But I have sinuous shells of pearly hue;
* * * * *
Shake one, and it awakens; then apply
Its polished lips to your attentive ear,
And it remembers its august abodes,
And murmurs as the ocean murmurs there.
- Walter Savage Landor, Gebir, Book V.
- The land is dearer for the sea,
The ocean for the shore.
- Lucy Larcom, On the Beach, Stanza 11.
- "Would'st thou,"—so the helmsman answered,
"Learn the secret of the sea?
Only those who brave its dangers
Comprehend its mystery!"
- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, The Secret of the Sea, Stanza 8.
- It is a pleasure for to sit at ease
Upon the land, and safely for to see
How other folks are tossed on the seas
That with the blustering winds turmoiled be.
- Lucretius, translated from Amyot's Introduction to Plutarch, by Sir Thomas North. (1579).
- Distinct as the billows, yet one as the sea.
- James Montgomery, The Ocean, Stanza 6.
- And Thou, vast Ocean! on whose awful face
Time's iron feet can print no ruin trace.
- Robert Montgomery, The Omnipresence of the Deity, Part I, Stanza 20.
- Deep calleth unto deep.
- Psalms. XLII. 7.
- If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea.
- Psalms. CXXXIX. 9.
- Why does the sea moan evermore?
Shut out from heaven it makes its moan,
It frets against the boundary shore;
All earth's full rivers cannot fill
The sea, that drinking thirsteth still.
- Christina G. Rossetti, By the Sea, Stanza 1.
- Streak of silver sea.
- Lord Salisbury. Quoted from Col. Chesney, who also quoted it. Used by Gladstone, writing of the English Channel, in Edinburgh Review, Oct. 18, 1870.
- The Channel is that silver strip of sea which severs merry England from the tardy realms of Europe.
- In the Church and State Review (April 1, 1863).
- A life on the ocean wave!
A home on the rolling deep;
Where the scattered waters rave,
And the winds their revels keep!
- Epes Sargent, Life on the Ocean Wave.
- The always wind-obeying deep.
- William Shakespeare, The Comedy of Errors, Act I, scene 1, line 64.
- There the sea I found
Calm as a cradled child in dreamless slumber bound.
- Percy Bysshe Shelley, The Revolt of Islam, Canto I, Stanza 15.
- I loved the Sea.
Whether in calm it glassed the gracious day
With all its light, the night with all its fires;
Whether in storm it lashed its sullen spray,
Wild as the heart when passionate youth expires;
Or lay, as now, a torture to my mind,
In yonder land-locked bay, unwrinkled by the wind.
- Richard Henry Stoddard, Carmen Naturæ Triumphale, line 192.
- Thou wert before the Continents, before
The hollow heavens, which like another sea
Encircles them and thee, but whence thou wert,
And when thou wast created, is not known,
Antiquity was young when thou wast old.
- Richard Henry Stoddard, Hymn to the Sea, line 104.
- We follow and race
In shifting chase,
Over the boundless ocean-space!
Who hath beheld when the race begun?
Who shall behold it run?
- Bayard Taylor, The Waves.
- Break, break, break,
On thy cold gray stones, oh sea!
And I would that my tongue could utter
The thoughts that arise in me.
- Alfred Tennyson, Break, Break, Break.
- Littus ama; altum alii teneant.
- I send thee a shell from the ocean-beach;
But listen thou well, for my shell hath speech.
Hold to thine ear
And plain thou'lt hear
Tales of ships.
- Charles H. Webb, With a Nantucket Shell.
- Rocked in the cradle of the deep,
I lay me down in peace to sleep.
- Emma Willard, The Cradle of the Deep.
- In chambers deep,
Where waters sleep,
What unknown treasures pave the floor.
- Edward Young, Ocean, Stanza 24.