"No Quarter" as written by and James Patrick (jimmy) Page John Paul Jones....
Close the door, put out the light
No, they won't be home tonight
The snow falls hard and don't you know?
The winds of Thor are blowing cold

They're wearing steel that's bright and true
They carry news that must get through, oh
They choose the path where no-one goes
They hold no quarter
They hold no quarter, oh

Walking side-by-side with death
The devil mocks their every step, ooh
The snow drives back the foot that's slow
The dogs of doom are howling more

They carry news that must get through
To build a dream for me and you, oh, oh, oh
They choose the path where no one goes
They hold no quarter
They ask no quarter

They hold no quarter
They ask no quarter
Without quarter, quarter, yeah (without quarter)
Without quarter, quarter, quarter
Taking no quarter
Oh, oh, oh (hear the dogs of doom) (no, never quarter)
I hear the dogs of doom are howling more

Lyrics submitted by kevin, edited by matthewktr

"No Quarter" as written by Jimmy Page John Paul Jones

Lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc.

Lyrics powered by LyricFind

No Quarter song meanings
Add your thoughts


sort form View by:
  • +6
    General CommentBased on everyone's feeback (and my own opinion), obviously the original song kicks ass. My question is, where's the personal connection to the band? Given the multitude of songs and titles in Led Zeppelin's cataloque, why did Plant & Page select "No Quarter" as the album title for their 1994 re-appearance? In my silly opinion, Plant experienced writer's block at a certain point during the 70's (most likely due to drug related memory loss, which isn't necessarily a bad thing) and therefore turned to his local library, whereby he stumbled upon celtic texts, and borrowed lyrical ideas for many of the songs written during that period. Though none of the band members realized it at the time--20 years later, use of the title "No Quarter", would secretly confirm the marketing-based fact that the Led Zeppelin fans will continue to finance any bogus "remastered" creativity produced decades before. Therefore, from a business perspective, the joke is on the fans, and no quarter is given in that regard. There's a reason why Page was nicknamed "Led Wallet", and coincidentally, he's produced (and re-mastered) everthing relating to Zeppelin since 1982. I'm a little drunk at the moment, and I just made that all up. However, any comments that refute the points I've made (if I've made any) shall clearly indicate that the person making such comments subscribes to bestiality-porn websites. G'nite
    irie13on April 25, 2003   Link
  • +5
    General CommentClose the door, put out the light.
    (Make like no one’s home, the Vikings are coming)
    You know they won't be home tonight.
    (The men of the city have gone to fight them)
    The snow falls hard and don't you know?
    (It’s probably blizzard like conditions outside, Vikings often came in the winter)
    The winds of Thor are blowing cold.
    (Thor, the main Viking god, blowing some damned cold winds)
    They're wearing steel that's bright and true
    (Vikings didn’t wear steel, but popular culture says that they did, along with those horned hats)
    They carry news that must get through.
    (They have to tell the countryside the Vikings have landed)
    They choose the path where no-one goes.
    (If referring to the townspeople, it’s to stay away from the Viking armies, if to the Vikings, than it’s the armies of the countryside)

    They hold no quarter.
    (Quarter means a sort of forced occupation, like; you demanded quarter of a house. So, it follows that the Vikings wouldn’t hold any quarter, they’d just slaughter and burn the hell out of the town)

    Walking side by side with death, The devil mocks their every step
    (It’s cold outside, many die on the long trip)
    The snow drives back the foot that's slow, The dogs of doom are howling more
    (In snow, wearing armor, you have to run, or you sink. The dogs of doom are Icelandic sheepdogs, a dog the Vikings took with them because of it’s hearty sprit, willingness to chase, and allegiance to it’s master)
    They carry news that must get through, To build a dream for me and you
    (If the news doesn’t get through, then the town is destroyed by Vikings)

    They choose the path where no-one goes.
    (See the last one, and the rest is self explanatory)

    They hold no quarter. They ask no quarter.
    The pain, the pain without quarter.
    They ask no quarter.
    The dogs of doom are howling more!
    Clemthon June 20, 2003   Link
  • +3
    General CommentThis song is definatly about Lord of the Rings. Just listen to the lyrics. Its obvious. Idiotic is right. The Tool version of the song is awesome. You should totally check it out. You know that saying "nothing is as good as the original." Well this is one case where cover is as good as the led zep version.
    ÆnimaManon June 21, 2002   Link
  • +2
    General CommentAnyone who's ever written lyrics knows that you don't sit down with a book and carefully research each line. It just comes out of you, and in the case of Zeppelin very nicely. Read the lyrics to That's the Way and you'll see what I mean. I'll admit, as is the case with Battle of Evermore, you people seem to have done your homework, and it does make sense. I just find it hard to believe Plant sat down and researched this to the extent it's taken to decipher it, that's all. Tolkien just works organically with Zeppelin, so it just works well to convey the mood, that's all.
    johnny1031on April 18, 2004   Link
  • +2
    General CommentSaying the term "No Quarter" means no housing is given, while the correct origin of the term, is confusing. In Laymen’s terms, saying we will give "no quarter" is saying you will give no mercy, kill everything.

    I am not going to break down every line of the song but to me, it would seem that this song does indeed talk about the end of Paganism and the rise of Christianity in Western Europe. Or at least, the struggle of Paganism against Christianity.

    "They are wearing steel that’s bright and blue" - might be referring to the Christian knights.
    "Carrying word that must get through" - might be referring to the word of Jesus Christ.
    Not to mention, Christian knights were notoriously ruthless in their conquest showing no quarter to their enemies, and hence the irony of them walking with the devil.

    This would also fit as to why Tool decided to remake the song. Anyone that knows Tool, knows that they often pick Christian based themes to drive home many of their concepts. Tool is effective in showing the irony behind Christianity and Maynard himself, despite growing up in a strict Catholic home, has forsaken religion.

    And by the way, the Tool remake is just as good in its own right as the original.
    lachrymiston November 03, 2009   Link
  • +2
    General CommentI think the 'Viking' comment is not far off the mark only the Norse fought for hundreds of years against Magyar Vikings who were their staunch enemies so I would replace the word 'Viking' with 'Norse' and then you have a pretty accurate interpretation since it is true - as mentioned - that Led Zeppelin was influenced by Northern Myth (even today of all the awards Robert Plant could mention on his site they have recieved, he made special note of the one awarded to him by the king of Sweden..telling..)...'The Winds of Thor are blowing cold' may refer to this age of the twilight of the gods we are said to be in ('Kali' if you are Hindu) in Northern Myth, when the ancient ways will fade and all connection to what is Higher. and the next line I think he is actually singing 'they were a steel that's tried and true' meaning they are bearers of an ancient teaching, a path, a way few hold to anymore. If this is correct then it makes more sense of the next line, 'to carry news that must get through.' ..singing about 'bright steel' does not make sense of that next line after it as well as this interpretation here in my opinion. And then it continues: 'Enter the path where no one goes: they hold no quarter, they vote no quarter..' This is speaking of an uncompromising warrior like attitude in carrying out what they are bound to and it may refer to a narrow path, not giving quarter to the broad path of the world. I personally think it refers to the Fourth Way (see the tarot card - Page is very into tarot - where a fourth cup is appearing to the meditator out of the sky with three cups before him)also because at the very end Robert Plant says 'Oh Lord, give me quarter' And finally because they once said in an interview you have to have a method to do what they do and that they choose Crowle's though they said Gurdjieff's is just as valid. Such are my musings..
    Commagene12on December 28, 2009   Link
  • +2
    My InterpretationOK, let's all get this straight -- LZ isn't "all about" LotR, but many of their songs ARE heavily influenced by LotR, as well as more direct Norse/Anglo-Saxon/Celtic mythology and history (as others have mentioned, Tolkien himself was heavily influenced by Norse/Anglo-Saxon/Celtic myths).

    No Quarter is a combination of the LotR scene where Aragorn leads his group along the Paths of the Dead (look it up), plus Norse (winds of Thor, the storm god), plus Celtic (the hounds of doom, the hounds of the Wild Hunt) all brought together -- very effectively, I must add. This definitely one of my favorite LZ songs.
    imposterazon March 24, 2013   Link
  • +1
    General CommentNor Thor, but then again Led Zeppelin borrowed from Norse Myth as well.
    Hildeon April 29, 2002   Link
  • +1
    General Commenti think that maharishi is the smartest one of us all here. :) i dont think that it really matters what the meaning of the song is. As long as we love it and can feel the music then there is no need to know the meaning of the lyrics.
    correnteon January 10, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General CommentOk you guys..Led Zeppelin were very drug induced musicians lol..by drugs i mean psychedelics
    for those of you who dont know what i talking about
    Basically..there are no questions or answers when it comes to music, just FEELING..a common misconception
    since us humans like to act like we have NO feeling..music is here to remind us that we do feel
    or art in general for that matter ;) ...anyway
    This band and any band that is truly successful..is so great because of pure love
    not no bullshit, "oh im in love." type shit..im talking about
    the unconditional and infinite love..and thats real music in my opinion

    plus i love to dance and if i can dance to whatever the hell it is, then its awesome to me..cause then i know they put real feeling in it..FUCK ILOVEMUSICA!!! lol
    PuReLoveon January 27, 2011   Link

Add your thoughts

Log in now to tell us what you think this song means.

Don’t have an account? Create an account with SongMeanings to post comments, submit lyrics, and more. It’s super easy, we promise!

Back to top