[Vathek] has, in parts, been called, but to some judgments, never is, dull: it is certainly in parts, grotesque, extravagant and even nasty. But Beckford could plead sufficient "local colour" for it, and a contrast, again almost Shakespearean, between the flickering farce atrocities of the beginning and the sombre magnificence of the end. Beckford's claims, in fact, rest on the half-score or even half-dozen pages towards the end: but these pages are hard to parallel in the later literature of prose fiction.
There is no more sombre enemy of good art than the pram in the hall.1938 Enemies of Promise, ch.14.
The dark notes rose everywhere, so dark, so sombre, they broke into a fountainlight as the rainbow sparkling and immaterial as invisible sources and echoes. The savannahs grew lonelyas the sea and broke again into a wave and forest. Tall trees with black marching boots and feet were clad in the spurs and sharp wings of a butterfly.Rolf Harris
The great fact was the land itself, which seemed to overwhelm the little beginnings of human society that struggled in its sombre wastes. It was from facing this vast hardness that the boy's mouth had become so bitter; because he felt that men were too weak to make any mark here, that the land wanted to be let alone, to preserve its own fierce strength, its peculiar, savage kind of beauty, its uninterrupted mournfulness.willa cather
Along the river's summer walk, The withered tufts of asters nod; And trembles on its arid stalk The hoar plume of the golden-rod. And on a ground of sombre fir, And azure-studded juniper, The silver birch its buds of purple shows, And scarlet berries tell where bloomed the sweet wild-rose![[John Greenleaf Whittier, The Last Walk in Autumn.