Wisdom mounts her zenith with the stars.
How sweet and soothing is this hour of calm! I thank thee, night! for thou hast chased away these horrid bodements which, amidst the throng, I could not dissipate: and with the blessing of thy benign and quiet influence now will I to my couch, although to rest is almost wronging such a night as this.
In her starry shade of dim and solitary loveliness, I learn the language of another world.
Oh, treacherous night! thou lendest thy ready veil to every treason, and teeming mischiefs thrive beneath thy shade.
The day is done, and darkness falls from the wings of night.
How absolute, and omnipotent is the silence of the night! And yet the stillness seems almost audible.—From all the measureless depths of air around us, comes a half sound, a half whisper, as if we could hear the crumbling and falling away of earth and all created things in the great miracle of nature, decay and reproduction ever beginning, never ending—the gradual lapse and running of the sand in the great hourglass of time.
Quiet night, that brings rest to the laborer, is the outlaw's day, in which he rises early to do wrong, and when his work is ended, dares not sleep.
Night's silent reign had robbed the world of light, to lend, in lieu, a greater benefit, repose and sleep, when every mortal whom care or grief permitted, took their rest.
The contemplation of night should lead to elevating rather than to depressing ideas. Who can fix his mind on transitory and earthly things, in presence of those glittering myriads of worlds; and who can dread death or solitude in the midst of this brilliant, animated universe, composed of countless suns and worlds, all full of light and life and motion?
Why does the evening, why does the night, put warmer love in our hearts?— Is it the nightly pressure of helplessness?—Or is it the exalting separation from the turmoils of life, that veiling of the world in which, for the soul, nothing remains but souls?
The worm of conscience is the companion of the owl.—The light is shunned by sinners and evil spirits only.
Under thy mantle black, there hidden lie, light-shunning theft, and traitorous intent, abhorred bloodshed, and vile felony, shameful deceit, and danger imminent, foul horror, and eke hellish dreriment.
The night is made for tenderness so still that the low whisper, scarcely audible, is heard like music, and so deeply pure that the fond thought is chastened as it springs and on the lip is made holy.
Earth, turning from the sun, brings night to man.
This sacred shade and solitude, what is it?—It is the felt presence of the Deity.—Few are the faults we flatter when alone; vice sinks in her allurements, in ungilt, and looks, like other objects, black by night.—By night an atheist half believes a God.
Darkness has divinity for me; it strikes thought inward; it drives back the soul to settle on herself, our point supreme! There lies our theater; there sits our judge. Darkness the curtain drops o'er life's dull scene; 'tis the kind hand of Providence stretched out 'twixt man and vanity: 'tis reason's reign, and virtue's too; these tutelary shades are man's asylum from the tainted throng. Night is the good man's friend, and guardian too; it no less rescues virtue, than inspires.