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Respectfully Quoted: A Dictionary of Quotations. 1989.

NUMBER: 1770
AUTHOR: Emma Lazarus (1849–87)
QUOTATION: Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
“Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!” cries she
With silent lips. “Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”
ATTRIBUTION: EMMA LAZARUS, “The New Colossus,” Emma Lazarus, Selection from Her Poetry and Prose, ed. Morris U. Schappes, pp. 40–41 (1944).

Congress had allocated money to erect Frédéric Bartholdi’s Statue of Liberty Enlightening the World, but had provided no money for a pedestal. A citizens committee invited famous authors to write appropriate words and donate their manuscripts for auction. Lazarus wrote this sonnet (1883), which can be found on a plaque in the pedestal of the Statue of Liberty. The last four and a half lines are also engraved on the wall of the reception hall of John F. Kennedy International Airport, New York City.—Dan Vogel, Emma Lazarus, pp. 157, 159 (1980).
SUBJECTS: Statue of Liberty