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A song is a relatively short musical composition. Colloquially, song is often used to refer any music composition, even those without vocals.
- It is best of all trades, to make songs, and the second best to sing them.
- Hilaire Belloc, "On Song", On Everything (1909).
- The best days of the church have always been its singing days.
- Theodore L. Cuyler, reported in Josiah Hotchkiss Gilbert, Dictionary of Burning Words of Brilliant Writers (1895), p. 554.
- And heaven had wanted one immortal song.
- John Dryden, Absalom and Achitophel (1681), Part I, line 197.
- Sing a song of sixpence.
- Song opens a window to the secret places of the soul.
- Listen to that song, and learn it!
Half my kingdom would I give,
As I live,
If by such songs you would earn it!
- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Tales of a Wayside Inn (1863-1874), Part I. The Musician's Tale. The Saga of King Olaf, Part V.
- Now, good Cesario, but that piece of song,
That old and antique song we heard last night;
Methought it did relieve my passion much,
More than light airs and recollected terms
Of these most brisk and giddy-paced times:
Come, but one verse.
- Our sweetest songs are those that tell of saddest thought.
- Percy Bysshe Shelley, "To a Skylark" (1820).
Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations
- Quotes reported in Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations (1922), p. 732-33.
- Tout finit par des chansons.
- Everything ends with songs.
- Pierre de Beaumarchais, Mariage de Figaro, End.
- I cannot sing the old songs
Though well I know the tune,
Familiar as a cradle-song
With sleep-compelling croon;
Yet though I'm filled with music,
As choirs of summer birds,
"I cannot sing the old songs"—
I do not know the words.
- Robert J. Burdette, Songs Without Words.
- All this for a song.
- Burleigh, to Queen Elizabeth (when ordered to give £100 to Spenser).
- I can not sing the old songs now!
It is not that I deem them low,
'Tis that I can't remember how
- Charles Stuart Calverley, Changed.
- Unlike my subject now * * * shall be my song,
It shall be witty and it sha'n't be long!
- Philip Stanhope, 4th Earl of Chesterfield, Preface to Letters, Volume I.
- A song of hate is a song of Hell;
Some there be who sing it well.
Let them sing it loud and long,
We lift our hearts in a loftier song:
We lift our hearts to Heaven above,
Singing the glory of her we love,
- Helen Gray Cone, Chant of Love for England.
- Verse sweetens toil, however rude the sound;
She feels no biting pang the while she sings,
Nor as she turns the giddy wheel around,
Revolves the sad vicissitudes of things.
- Richard Gifford, Contemplation. Samuel Johnson altered the second line to: "All at her work the village maiden sings"; and in the third line substituted "while for "as".
- He play'd an ancient ditty long since mute,
In Provence call'd, "La belle dame sans merci."
- John Keats, The Eve of St. Agnes, Stanza 33. "La Belle Dame, sans Merci" is a poem by Alain Chartier. Attributed to Jean Marot by M. Paulin—Manuscript Français, VII. 252. In Harleian Manuscript, 373, a translation is attributed to Sir Richard Ros.
- We are tenting tonight on the old camp ground,
Give us a song to cheer.
- Walter Kittridge, Tenting on the Old Camp Ground.
- In the ink of our sweat we will find it yet,
The song that is fit for men!
- The song on its mighty pinions
Took every living soul, and lifted it gently to heaven.
- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Children of the Lord's Supper, line 44.
- Such songs have power to quiet
The restless pulse of care,
And come like the benediction
That follows after prayer.
- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, The Day is Done, Stanza 9.
- And grant that when I face the grisly Thing,
My song may trumpet down the gray Perhaps
Let me be as a tune-swept fiddlestring
That feels the Master Melody—and snaps.
- John G. Neihardt, Let me live out my Years.
- She makes her hand hard with labour, and her heart soft with pity: and when winter evenings fall early (sitting at her merry wheel), she sings a defiance to the giddy wheel of fortune … and fears no manner of ill because she means none.
- Thomas Overbury, A Fair and Happy Milkmaid.
- I think, whatever mortals crave,
With impotent endeavor,
A wreath—a rank—a throne—a grave—
The world goes round forever;
I think that life is not too long,
And therefore I determine,
That many people read a song,
Who will not read a sermon.
- W. M. Praed, Chant of the Brazen Head.
- Odds life! must one swear to the truth of a song?
- Matthew Prior, A Better Answer.
- Etiam singulorum fatigatio quamlibet se rudi modulatione solatur.
- Men, even when alone, lighten their labors by song, however rude it may be.
- Quintilian, De Institutione Oratoria, I. 81.
- Builders, raise the ceiling high,
Raise the dome into the sky,
Hear the wedding song!
For the happy groom is near,
Tall as Mars, and statelier,
Hear the wedding song!
- Sappho, Fragments. J. S. Easby Smith's translation.
- Song forbids victorious deeds to die.
- Friedrich Schiller, The Artists.
- The lively Shadow-World of Song.
- Friedrich Schiller, The Artists.
- Songs consecrate to truth and liberty.
- Percy Bysshe Shelley, To Wordsworth, line 12.
- Knitting and withal singing, and it seemed that her voice comforted her hands to work.
- Sir Philip Sidney, Arcadia, Book I.
- Because the gift of Song was chiefly lent,
To give consoling music for the joys
We lack, and not for those which we possess.
- Bayard Taylor, The Poet's Journal, Third Evening.
- They sang of love and not of fame;
Forgot was Britain's glory;
Each heart recalled a different name,
But all sang "Annie Laurie."
- Bayard Taylor, A Song of the Camp.
- Short swallow-flights of song, that dip
Their wings in tears, and skim away.
- Cantilenam eandem canis.
- You sing the same old song.
- Terence, Phormio, III. 2. 10.
- Cicala to cicala is dear, and ant to ant, and hawks to hawks, but to me the muse and song.
- Theocritus, Idyl, IX. Translation by Andrew Lang, Stanza 2.
- Grasshopper to grasshopper, ant to ant is dear,
Hawks love hawks, but I the muse and song.
- Theocritus, Idyl, IX. Translation by Maurice Thompson.
- Swift, swift, and bring with you
Song's Indian summer!
- Francis Thompson, A Carrier Song, Stanza 2.
- Soft words, with nothing in them, make a song.
- Edmund Waller, To Mr. Creech, line 10.
- A careless song, with a little nonsense in it now and then, does not mis-become a monarch.
- Horace Walpole, letter to Sir Horace Mann. (1770).
- Bring the good old bugle, boys! we'll sing another song—
Sing it with a spirit that will start the world along—
Sing it as we used to sing it, fifty thousand strong,
While we were marching through Georgia.
- Henry Clay Work, Marching Through Georgia.