Beam me to the Holodeck


United we stand, Divided we fall

Is a phrase that has been used in mottos, from nations and states to songs. The basic concept is that unless the people are united, it is easy to destroy them. This is a counter to the maxim divide and rule.

The first attributed use in modern times is to John Dickinson in his revolutionary war song The Liberty Song. In the song, first published in the Boston Gazette in July 1768, he wrote: “Then join hand in hand, brave Americans all! By uniting we stand, by dividing we fall!” This was also said by George Washington at the time of the start of the Constitution.

Patrick Henry used the phrase in his last public speech, given in March 1799, in which he denounced The Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions. Clasping his hands and swaying unsteadily, Henry declaimed, “Let us trust God, and our better judgment to set us right hereafter. United we stand, divided we fall. Let us not split into factions which must destroy that union upon which our existence hangs.” At the end of his oration, Henry fell into the arms of bystanders and was carried almost lifeless into a nearby tavern. Two months afterward, he had died.

Popular culture

The lyrics “United we stand, divided we fall” are featured in the song “United We Stand” performed by The Brotherhood of Man (written by Tony Hiller and Peter Simons). This song was also performed by Sonny and Cher and Elton John.

Also, in the song Hey You performed and written by the band Pink Floyd, a similar term with the same meaning, “Together we stand, divided we fall”, is used.

Wilbert Harrison used the similar “Together we’ll stand, Divided we’ll fall” in his song Let’s Work Together.

In the Sum 41 song “Confusion And Frustration In Modern Times”, the phrase “Divided we stand, Together we fall” is used. New York Hardcore punk band Agnostic Front use the lyrics “United we stand, divided we fall, Gotta gotta go” in their song “Gotta Go”, which was featured on Punk-O-Rama Vol. 3. Punk band Smoke or Fire also used the reverse lyric “United we stand, divided we’ll fall” in their song “What Separates Us All”, from their 2007 album This Sinking Ship.

The dutch band Heideroosjes use the lyrics in their song “Time is Ticking Away”. It is also used in The Dropkick Murphys “Boy’s on the Docks”. The 3rd Mission in Operation flashpoint Dragon rising is called “United we stand”. A slightly different version is mentioned by the heavy metal band Judas Priest in his song “United” (“united we stand, united we never shall fall”). 3T also used the exact words on their debut album Brotherhood, the song entitled Brotherhood too.

The reverse was also used by Def Leppard in the song When Love & Hate Collide, “..divided we stand, baby, united we fall”.


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