FACT CHECK: ‘Once Given, Never Forgotten’ — Did John Lennon Write This Quote About Love?

Brad Sylvester | Fact Check Editor

A post shared on Facebook credits musician John Lennon with writing, “Love is a promise/Love is a souvenir/Once given, never forgotten/Never let it disappear.”

Verdict: False

These words actually come from British pop rock band Tears for Fears, not Lennon.

Fact Check:

Lennon, in partnership with his bandmate Paul McCartney, wrote countless songs for the Beatles under the songwriting credit “Lennon-McCartney,” including hits like “Come Together” and “In My Life.” He also collaborated with his wife Yoko Ono and pursued a solo career.

However, there is no evidence that Lennon, whose music remains popular, wrote the words attributed to him in the Facebook post. It doesn’t appear in any of his lyrics or his three books.

The Daily Caller News Foundation also reached out to several experts, none of whom recognized the quote.

“I’m almost positive that is not a John Lennon quote,” said Nicole Michael, a spokeswoman for Lennon biographer Jude Southerland Kessler, in an email to the DCNF. “In fact, I think it’s from a Tears for Fears song.”

Indeed, a quick Google search reveals the quote does come from a song written by Roland Orzabal, a member of Tears for Fears, and Nicky Holland, a singer-songwriter. Tears for Fears included the song in which the words appear on its 1989 album, “The Seeds of Love.”

The words are in the second verse of their song “Advice for the Young at Heart,” according to the lyric website Genius. The song was released as a single in 1990.

The quote has been attributed to Lennon since at least 2010, according to the website Quote Investigator, though there might have been earlier instances.

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Brad Sylvester

Fact Check Editor
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