C.N. Douglas, comp. Forty Thousand Quotations: Prose and Poetical. 1917.


The thoughts of God in the heavens.


Those gold candles fixed in heaven’s air.


The eternal jewels of the short-lived night.

Mary Mapes Dodge.

Ye stars! which are the poetry of heaven.


A sky full of silent suns.


The stars above govern our condition.


Clad in the beauty of a thousand stars.


The planets in their station listening stood.


Still singing as they shine.

O. W. Holmes.

Our Jovial star reign’d at his birth.


The stars have fought their battles leagued with man.

Dr. Young.

The stars in their courses fought against Sisera.


The stars are so far, far away!

L. E. Landon.

This majestical roof, fretted with golden fire.


Ye little stars, hide your diminish’d rays.


The evening star, love’s harbinger, appeared.


Surely the stars are images of love.


Two stars keep not their motion in one sphere.


The starres, bright sentinels of the skies.

Wm. Habington.

The stars hang bright above, silent, as if they watched the sleeping earth.


  • Cry out upon the stars for doing
  • Ill offices, to cross their wooing.
  • Butler.

  • While twilight’s curtain gathering far,
  • Is pinned with a single diamond star.
  • McDonald Clark.

    And the sentinel stars set their watch in the sky.


    These blessed candles of the night.


    The unfolding star calls up the shepherd.


  • What are ye orbs?
  • The words of God? the Scriptures of the skies?
  • Bailey.

    These preachers of beauty, which light the world with their admonishing smile.


    Canst thou bind the sweet influences of Pleiades, or loose the bands of Orion?


  • A broad and ample road, whose dust is gold,
  • And pavement stars.
  • Milton.

  • Now the bright morning-star, day’s harbinger,
  • Comes dancing from the east.
  • Milton.

  • But who can count the stars of heaven?
  • Who sing their influence on this lower world?
  • Thomson.

    The gems of heaven, that gild night’s sable throne.


    Heaven looks down on earth with all her eyes.


    The world is great; the stars are golden fruit upon a tree all out of reach.

    George Eliot.

    Forever singing, as they shine, the hand that made us is divine.


    Teach me your mood, O patient stars! who climb each night the ancient sky.


    Day hath put on his jacket, and around his burning bosom buttoned it with stars.

    O. W. Holmes.

    Shrines to burn earth’s incense on, the altar-fires of heaven!


  • The stars in order twinkle in the skies,
  • And fall in silence, and in silence rise.
  • Broome.

    The stars shall fade away, the sun himself grow dim with age, and Nature sink in years.


    The innumerable stars shining in order, like a living hymn written in light.


  • In yonder pensile orb, and every sphere
  • That gems the starry girdle of the year.
  • Campbell.

  • Men at some time are masters of their fates:
  • The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars,
  • But in ourselves.
  • Shakespeare.

    Stars which stand as thick as dew-drops on the field of heaven.


    No star seemed less than what science has taught us that it is.

    James Fenimore Cooper.

  • Her blue eyes sought the west afar,
  • For lovers love the western star.
  • Scott.

  • Hither, as to their fountain, other stars
  • Repairing in their golden urns draw light,
  • And hence the morning planet gilds her horns.
  • Milton.

  • One sun by day, by night ten thousand shine;
  • And light us deep into the Deity;
  • How boundless in magnificence and might.
  • Young.

  • Each separate star
  • Seems nothing, but a myriad scattered stars
  • Break up the night, and make it beautiful.
  • Bayard Taylor.

  • The very stars
  • Tremble above, as though the Voice Divine
  • Reverberated through the dread expanse.
  • Anna Katharine Green.

  • The stars of the night
  • Will lend thee their light,
  • Like tapers clear without number!
  • Herrick.

    A single star is rising in the east, and from afar sheds a most tremulous lustre; silent Night doth wear it like a jewel on her brow.

    Barry Cornwall.

    And lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was.


    O powers illimitable! it is but the outer hem of God’s great mantle our poor stars do gem.


    I am constant as the northern star, of whose true-fixed and resting quality there is no fellow in the firmament.


  • When, like an Emir of tyrannic power,
  • Sirius appears, and on the horizon black
  • Bids countless stars pursue their mighty track.
  • Victor Hugo.

    The ignorant man takes counsel of the stars; but the wise man takes counsel of God, who made the stars.


  • And made the stars,
  • And set them in the firmament of heav’n,
  • T’ illuminate the earth, and rule the day
  • In their vicissitude, and rule the night.
  • Milton.

  • One naked star has waded through
  • The purple shallows of the night,
  • And faltering as falls the dew
  • It drips its misty light.
  • James Whitcomb Riley.

  • When stars are in the quiet skies,
  • Then most I pine for thee;
  • Bend on me then thy tender eyes,
  • As stars look on the sea.
  • Bulwer-Lytton.

  • But soon, the prospect clearing,
  • By cloudless starlight on he treads
  • And thinks no lamp so cheering
  • As that light which heaven sheds.
  • Moore.

  • There is no light in earth or heaven
  • But the cold light of stars;
  • And the first watch of night is given
  • To the red planet Mars.
  • Longfellow.

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

  • Many a night I saw the Pleiads, rising thro’ the mellow shade,
  • Glitter like a swarm of fire-flies tangled in a silver braid.
  • Tennyson.

  • Just above yon sandy bar,
  • As the day grows fainter and dimmer,
  • Lonely and lovely, a single star
  • Lights the air with a dusky glimmer.
  • Longfellow.

    It is a gentle and affectionate thought, that in immeasurable height above us, at our first birth, the wreath of love was woven with sparkling stars for flowers.


    Magnificence is likewise a source of the sublime. A great profusion of things which are splendid or valuable in themselves is magnificent. The starry heaven, though it occurs so very frequently to our view, never fails to excite an idea of grandeur.


  • Who rounded in his palm these spacious orb
  • *****
  • Numerous as glittering gems of morning dew,
  • Or sparks from populous cities in a blaze,
  • And set the bosom of old night on fire.
  • Young.

  • The skies are painted with unnumber’d sparks,
  • They are all fire and every one doth shine,
  • But there’s but one in all doth hold his place.
  • Shakespeare.

  • The spacious firmament on high,
  • With all the blue ethereal sky,
  • And spangled heavens, a shining frame,
  • Their great Original proclaim.
  • Addison.

  • So sinks the day-star in the ocean-bed,
  • And yet anon repairs his drooping head,
  • And tricks his beams, and with new-spangled ore
  • Flames in the forehead of the morning sky.
  • Milton.

  • You meaner beauties of the night,
  • That poorly satisfy our eyes
  • More by your number than your light;
  • You common people of the skies,—
  • What are you when the moon shall rise?
  • Sir Henry Wotton.

  • Give me my Romeo: and, when he 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.
  • Shakespeare.

  • The stars are mansions built by nature’s hand,
  • And, haply, there the spirits of the blest,
  • Dwell, clothed in radiance, their immortal rest.
  • Wordsworth.

    The chambers of the East are opened in every land, and the sun come forth to sow the earth with orient pearl. Night, the ancient mother, follows him with her diadem of stars.***Bright creatures! how they gleam like spirits through the shadows of innumerable eyes from their thrones in the boundless depths of heaven.


  • Lo! from the dread immensity of space
  • Returning, with accelerated course,
  • The rushing comet to the sun descends:
  • And as he sinks below the shading earth,
  • With awful train projected o’er the heavens,
  • The guilty nations tremble.
  • Thomson.

    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.


    A star is beautiful; it affords pleasure, not from what it is to do, or to give, but simply by being what it is. It befits the heavens; it has congruity with the mighty space in which it dwells. It has repose; no force disturbs its eternal peace. It has freedom; no obstruction lies between it and infinity.


  • The sad and solemn night
  • Hath yet her multitude of cheerful fires;
  • The glorious host of light
  • Walk the dark hemisphere till she retires;
  • All through her silent watches, gliding slow,
  • Her constellations come, and climb the heavens, and go.
  • Bryant.

    The number is certainly the cause. The apparent disorder augments the grandeur, for the appearance of care is highly contrary to our ideas of magnificence. Besides, the stars lie in such apparent confusion, as makes it impossible on ordinary occasions to reckon them. This gives them the advantage of a sort of infinity.


  • The night is calm and cloudless,
  • And still as still can be,
  • And the stars come forth to listen
  • To the music of the sea.
  • They gather, and gather, and gather,
  • Until they crowd the sky,
  • And listen, in breathless silence,
  • To the solemn litany.
  • Longfellow.

    On the wide-stretching plains of western Asia, in the warm cloudless Assyrian night, with the lamps of heaven flashing out their radiance in uninterrupted splendor from the centre to the boundless horizon, it was no wonder that students and sages should have accepted for deities those distant worlds of fire on which eyes, brain, hopes, thoughts, and aspirations were nightly fixed.

    G. J. W. Melville.

  • Look how the floor of heaven
  • Is thick inlaid with patines of bright gold:
  • There’s not the smallest orb which thou behold’st
  • But in his motion like an angel sings,
  • Still quiring to the young-ey’d cherubims:
  • Such harmony is in immortal souls;
  • But whilst this muddy vesture of decay
  • Doth grossly close it in, we cannot hear it.
  • Shakespeare.

  • The sky
  • Spreads like an ocean hung on high,
  • Bespangled with those isles of light
  • So wildly, spiritually bright.
  • Whoever gaz’d upon them shining,
  • And turn’d to earth without repining,
  • Nor wish’d for wings to flee away,
  • And mix with their eternal ray?
  • Byron.

    All these stupendous objects are daily around us; but because they are constantly exposed to our view, they never affect our minds, so natural is it for us to admire new, rather than grand objects. Therefore the vast multitude of stars which diversify the beauty of this immense body does not call the people together; but when any change happens therein, the eyes of all are fixed upon the heavens.

    St. Basil.

  • Ye stars! which are the poetry of heaven,
  • If in your bright leaves we would read the fate
  • Of men and empires,—’tis to be forgiven,
  • That in our aspirations to be great,
  • Our destinies o’erleap their mortal state,
  • And claim a kindred with you; for ye are
  • A beauty and a mystery, and create
  • In us such love and reverence from afar,
  • That fortune, fame, power, life, have named themselves a star.
  • Byron.

    When I gaze into the stars, they look down upon me with pity from their serene and silent spaces, like eyes glistening with tears over the little lot of man. Thousands of generations, all as noisy as our own, have been swallowed up by time, and there remains no record of them any more. Yet Arcturus and Orion, Sirius and Pleiades, are still shining in their courses, clear and young, as when the shepherd first noted them in the plain of Shinar!


  • Oh, Constellations of the early night
  • That sparkled brighter as the twilight died,
  • And made the darkness glorious! I have seen
  • Your rays grow dim upon the horizon’s edge,
  • And sink behind the mountains. I have seen
  • The great Orion, with his jewelled belt,
  • That large-limbed warrior of the skies, go down
  • Into the gloom. Beside him sank a crowd
  • Of shining ones.
  • William Cullen Bryant.

  • O thou beautiful
  • And unimaginable ether! and
  • Ye multiplying masses of increased
  • And still increasing lights! what are ye? what
  • Is this blue wilderness of interminable
  • Air, where ye roll along, as I have seen
  • The leaves along the limpid streams of Eden?
  • Is your course measur’d for ye? Or do ye
  • Sweep on in your unbounded revelry
  • Through an aërial universe of endless
  • Expansion,—at which my soul aches to think,—
  • Intoxicated with eternity?
  • Byron.

    It is a truly sublime spectacle when in the stillness of the night, in an unclouded sky, the stars, like the world’s choir, rise and set, and as it were divide existence into two portions,—the one, belonging to the earthly, is silent in the perfect stillness of night; whilst the other alone comes forth in sublimity, pomp, and majesty. Viewed in this light, the starry heavens truly exercise a moral influence over us; and who can readily stray into the paths of immorality if he has been accustomed to live amidst such thoughts and feelings, and frequently to dwell upon them? How are we entranced by the simple splendors of this wonderful drama of nature!

    Wilhelm von Humboldt.