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Impression, Sunrise, 1872, by Claude Monet
Utu, shepherd of the land, ... when you rise, the people rise with you. ~ Lugalbanda
The rising sun complies with our weak sight,
First gilds the clouds, then shows his globe of light
At such a distance from our eyes, as though
He knew what harm his hasty beams would do. ~ Edmund Waller

Sunrise is the instant at which the upper edge of the Sun appears above the horizon in the east. Sunrise should not be confused with dawn, which is the (variously defined) point at which the sky begins to lighten, some time before the sun itself appears, ending twilight. Because atmospheric refraction causes the sun to be seen while it is still below the horizon, both sunrise and sunset are, from one point of view, optical illusions. The sun also exhibits an optical illusion at sunrise similar to the moon illusion.


  • Prayer is good at any time, yet there are two periods of change of currents when turning to the Higher World is especially desirable—at sunrise and after sunset.
  • The sun had long since in the lap
    Of Thetis taken out his nap,
    And, like a lobster boil'd, the morn
    From black to red began to turn.
  • He fires the proud tops of the eastern pines
    And darts his light through every guilty hole.
  • As when the golden sun salutes the morn,
    And, having gilt the ocean with his beams,
    Gallops the zodiac in his glistering coach,
    And overlooks the highest-peering hills.
  • Hail, gentle Dawn! mild blushing goddess, hail!
    Rejoic'd I see thy purple mantle spread
    O'er half the skies, gems pave thy radiant way,
    And orient pearls from ev'ry shrub depend.
  • But yonder comes the powerful King of Day,
    Rejoicing in the East.

Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations[edit]

Quotes reported in Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations (1922), p. 769.

  • Oh the road to Mandalay
    Where the flyin'-fishes play
    An' the dawn comes up like thunder outer
    China 'crost the Bay!
  • The east is blossoming! Yea, a rose,
    Vast as the heavens, soft as a kiss,
    Sweet as the presence of woman is,
    Rises and reaches, and widens and grows
    Large and luminous up from the sea,
    And out of the sea, as a blossoming tree,
    Richer and richer, so higher and higher,
    Deeper and deeper it takes its hue;
    Brighter and brighter it reaches through
    The space of heaven and the place of stars,
    Till all is as rich as a rose can be,
    And my rose-leaves fall into billows of fire.
  • 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!
  • The whole east was flecked
    With flashing streaks and shafts of amethyst,
    While a light crimson mist
    Went up before the mounting luminary,
    And all the strips of cloud began to vary
    Their hues, and all the zenith seemed to ope
    As if to show a cope beyond the cope!
  • And yonder fly his scattered golden arrows,
    And smite the hills with day.
  • See! led by Morn, with dewy feet,
    Apollo mounts his golden seat,
    Replete with seven-fold fire;
    While, dazzled by his conquering light,
    Heaven's glittering host and awful night
    Submissively retire.
  • See how there
    The cowlèd night
    Kneels on the Eastern sanctuary-stair.
  • East, oh, east of Himalay
    Dwell the nations underground,
    Hiding from the shock of day,
    For the sun's uprising sound…
    So fearfully the sun doth sound,
    Clanging up beyond Cathay;
    For the great earthquaking sunrise
    Rolling up beyond Cathay.
  • The rising sun complies with our weak sight,
    First gilds the clouds, then shows his globe of light
    At such a distance from our eyes, as though
    He knew what harm his hasty beams would do.
    • Edmund Waller, To the King upon His Majesty's Happy Return, line 1.

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