swan song


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swan song

A final performance, product, or accomplishment before someone or something stops creating work or products, as due to death, retirement, closure, etc. From the ancient belief that swans issue a beautiful song-like sound just before they die. Reaching, and often surpassing, the dizzying heights of her first novel, this is a remarkable swan song for the accomplished author. Their latest album, the swan song of the legendary rock group, is unfortunately not one of their best.
See also: song, swan

swan song

Fig. the last work or performance of a playwright, musician, actor, etc., before death or retirement. His portrayal of Lear was the actor's swan song. We didn't know that her performance last night was the singer's swan song.
See also: song, swan

swan song

A final accomplishment or performance, one's last work. For example, I'm resigning tomorrow; this project was my swan song. This term alludes to the old belief that swans normally are mute but burst into beautiful song moments before they die. Although the idea is much older, the term was first recorded in English only in 1890.
See also: song, swan

a swan song

A swan song is the last performance or piece of work that someone does in their career. He had made up his mind that this show was going to be his swan song. Note: This expression developed from a belief that a dying swan sings.
See also: song, swan

swan song

Last effort. An ancient belief held that swans, who are usually silent, burst into beautiful song with their dying breaths. As a phrase, “swan song” connotes a last burst of energy before expiring.
See also: song, swan
References in periodicals archive ?
Unremarkable ballad Black Swan Song was the worst offender while early singles You Got The Style and El Salvador felt dated.
The final production is Swan Song, by Lee Mathison.
This could be described as the outgoing Chancellor's swan song.
And Broadway or no Broadway, director Des McAnuff -- the Playhouse's outgoing artistic director -- has cooked up a honey of a swan song.
Leigh's triumph capped a fairy tale swan song by ex-St Helens star Tommy Martyn.
With a distinct lack of direction about the band at the moment it looks like Up At The Lake could prove to be their swan song.
Items included a dance based on the work of choreographer Christopher Bruce's Swan Song and plays in the style of John Godber.
Gottlieb sang a swan song of modernist abstraction, which ends with a geomorphic whimper as well as a gestural bang.
Now he has followed up that bestseller, The Strangled Impulse, with Swan Song, the story of a convent superior who begins to doubt her faith.
Random fluctuations in the Hubble data could mimic the expected swan song of matter falling into a black hole, he notes.
In keeping with Smith's eulogistic tone, "Death Singing" depicts, to a strident rock march, the swan song of a musician in the final throes of AIDS performing his last concert.
What's not clear is whether the unprecedented catastrophe losses of 2005 will make it so hard for small regionals to operate that they will face their own swan song.
Our other two suggestions nothing from the list runs this week are winners last time out and it would be fitting if SWAN SONG follows up her Chester victory in the week her mother, the sprinter Lochsong, passed away.
One thing is for certain, however, the panic merchants won't succeed in creating a swan song for this lovely part of the Scottish coastline.
After his midweek display for Fulham at Southampton, when Pembridge took every corner, every free-kick - and even put the pass through from open play for Thomasz Radzinski to score - the Merthyr Maradona seems to be enjoying an impressive swan song to his career.