''I am not afraid that I shall exaggerate the value and significance of life, but that I shall not be up to the occasion which it is.''
''The truth is, there is money buried everywhere, and you have only to go to work to find it.''
''Homer and Shakespeare and Milton and Marvell and Wordsworth are but the rustling of leaves and crackling of twigs in the forest, and there is not yet the sound of any bird. The Muse has never lifted up her voice to sing.''
''In the right stage of the weather a pond fires its evening gun with great regularity.''
''We are not concerned about the historical truth of this, but rather a higher poetical truth. We seem to hear the music of a thought, and care not if the understanding be not gratified.''
''The mission of men there seems to be, like so many busy demons, to drive the forest all out of the country, from every solitary beaver swamp and mountain-side, as soon as possible.''
''My actual life is a fact, in view of which I have no occasion to congratulate myself; but for my faith and aspiration I have respect. It is from these that I speak.''
''The only danger in Friendship is that it will end.''
''Nothing can shock a brave man but dullness.''
''The Great Snow! How cheerful it is to hear of!''
''I am sure that I never read any memorable news in a newspaper.''
''It required some rudeness to disturb with our boat the mirror-like surface of the water, in which every twig and blade of grass was so faithfully reflected; too faithfully indeed for art to imitate, for only Nature may exaggerate herself.''
''The government of the world I live in was not framed, like that of Britain, in after- dinner conversations over the wine.''
''I did not read books the first summer; I hoed beans.''
''He who receives an injury is to some extent an accomplice of the wrong-doer.''
''Life is so short that it is not wise to take roundabout ways, nor can we spend much time in waiting.... We have not got half-way to dawn yet.''
''Most events recorded in history are more remarkable than important, like eclipses of the sun and moon, by which all are attracted, but whose effects no one takes the trouble to calculate.''
''The poet uses the results of science and philosophy, and generalizes their widest deductions.''
''The old coat that I wear is Concord; it is my morning robe and study gown, my working dress and suit of ceremony, and my nightgown after all. Cleave to the simplest ever. Home,home,home. Cars sound like cares to me.''
''No face which we can give to a matter will stead us so well at last as the truth. This alone wears well.''
''Especially the transcendental philosophy needs the leaven of humor to render it light and digestible.''
''The scenery of mountain towns is commonly too much crowded. A town which is built on a plain of some extent, with an open horizon, and surrounded by hills at a distance, affords the best walks and views.''
''The man who goes alone can start today; but he who travels with another must wait till that other is ready, and it may be a long time before they get off.''
''I should consider it a greater success to interest one wise and earnest soul, than a million unwise and frivolous.''
''It was a quiet Sunday morning, with more of the auroral rosy and white than of the yellow light in it, as if it dated from earlier than the fall of man, and still preserved a heathenish integrity.''
''At most, it tolerates one annual loon.''
''The law will never make a man free; it is men who have got to make the law free.''
''I perceive that in these woods the earliest settlements are, for various reasons, clustering about the lakes, but partly, I think, for the sake of the neighborhood as the oldest clearings. They are forest schools already established,great centres of light.''
''Unless we do more than simply learn the trade of our time, we are but apprentices, and not yet masters of the art of life.''
''Whoever can discern truth has received his commission from a higher source than the chiefest justice in the world who can discern only law. He finds himself constituted judge of the judge. Strange that it should be necessary to state such simple truths!''
''I fear that I have not got much to say about Canada, not having seen much; what I got by going to Canada was a cold.''
''The thoughtful man becomes a hermit in the thoroughfares of the marketplace.''
''If it is surely the means to the highest end we know, can any work be humble or disgusting? Will it not rather be elevating as a ladder, the means by which we are translated?''
''If we live in the Nineteenth Century, why should we not enjoy the advantages which the Nineteenth Century offers? Why should our life be in any respect provincial?''
''The broadest and most prevalent error requires the most disinterested virtue to sustain it.''
''Every nail driven should be as another rivet in the machine of the universe, you carrying on the work.''
''I parted from my beloved because there was one thing which I had to tell her. She questioned me. She should have known all by sympathy. That I had to tell her it was the difference between us,the misunderstanding.''
''We bless and curse ourselves.''
''How much more interesting an event is that man's supper who has just been forth in the snow to hunt, nay, you might say, steal, the fuel to cook it with! His bread and meat are sweet.''
''The poet is a man who lives at last by watching his moods. An old poet comes at last to watch his moods as narrowly as a cat does a mouse.''
''We are made happy when reason can discover no occasion for it. The memory of some past moments is more persuasive than the experience of present ones. There have been visions of such breadth and brightness that these motes were invisible in their light.''
''Above all, he possessed a hearty good-will to all men, and never wrote a cross or even careless word.''
''For the most part we allow only outlying and transient circumstances to make our occasions. They are, in fact, the cause of our distraction.''
''Dreams are the touchstones of our characters.''
''If a man constantly aspires, is he not elevated?''
''We thought ourselves lucky to secure the services of this man, who was known to be particularly steady and trustworthy.''
''There are times when we have had enough even of our Friends.''
''There is no ill which may not be dissipated, like the dark, if you let in a stronger light upon it.''
''Friendship is evanescent in every man's experience, and remembered like heat lightning in past summers.''
''Are you in want of amusement nowadays? Then play a little at the game of getting a living. There was never anything equal to it. Do it temperately, though, and don't sweat.''
''I laugh with the Parcæ only.''
''His scenery is always true, and not invented.''
''Often the poor man is not so cold and hungry as he is dirty and ragged and gross. It is partly his taste, and not merely his misfortune. If you give him money, he will perhaps buy more rags with it.''
''Nothing but great antiquity can make graveyards interesting to me. I have no friends there.''
''The whole tree itself is but one leaf, and rivers are still vaster leaves whose pulp is intervening earth, and towns and cities are the ova of insects in their axils.''
''Every sentence is the result of a long probation.''
''The still youthful energies of the globe have only to be directed in their proper channel.''
''If I have unjustly wrested a plank from a drowning man, I must restore it to him though I drown myself.''
''Your so-called wise man goes trying to persuade himself that there is no entity there but himself and his traps, but it is a great deal easier to believe the truth.''
''The old world stands serenely behind the new, as one mountain yonder towers behind another, more dim and distant. Rome imposes her story still upon this late generation.''
''Men seem anxious to accomplish an orderly retreat through the centuries, earnestly rebuilding the works behind them, as they are battered down by the encroachments of time; but while they loiter, they and their works both fall prey to the arch enemy.''
''Our actual Friends are but distant relations of those to whom we are pledged.''
''A true politeness does not result from any hasty and artificial polishing, it is true, but grows naturally in characters of the right grain and quality, through a long fronting of men and events, and rubbing on good and bad fortune.''
''Let us not play at kittly-benders. There is a solid bottom everywhere.''
''You may raise enough money to tunnel a mountain, but you cannot raise money enough to hire a man who is minding his own business.''
''O the evening robin, at the end of a New England summer day! If I could ever find the twig he sits upon!''
''As a true patriot, I should be ashamed to think that Adam in paradise was more favorably situated on the whole than the backwoodsman in this country.''
''A man had better starve at once than lose his innocence in the process of getting his bread.''
''It has been proposed that the town should adopt for its coat of arms a field verdant, with the Concord circling nine times round.''
''To a small man every greater is an exaggeration.''
''A fortified town is like a man cased in the heavy armor of antiquity, with a horse-load of broadswords and small arms slung to him, endeavoring to go about his business.''
''I seem to have dodged all my days with one or two persons, and lived upon expectation,as if the bud would surely blossom; and so I am content to live.''
''With a little more deliberation in the choice of their pursuits, all men would perhaps become essentially students and observers, for certainly their nature and destiny are interesting to all alike.''
''The community has no bribe that will tempt a wise man.''
''Love is a severe critic.''
''Life consists with wildness. The most alive is the wildest. Not yet subdued to man, its presence refreshes him.''
''Men are in the main alike, but they were made several in order that they might be various. If a low use is to be served, one man will do nearly quite as well as another; if a high one, individual excellence is to be regarded.''
''But for my part, I preferred the solitary dwelling.''
''He who gives himself entirely to his fellow-men appears to them useless and selfish; but he who gives himself partially to them is pronounced a benefactor and philanthropist.''
''Faith, indeed, is all the reform that is needed; it is itself a reform.''
''We do not live by justice, but by grace.''
''Time is but the stream I go a-fishing in.''
''To an extinct race it was grass-ground, where they hunted and fished; and it is still perennial grass-ground to Concord farmers, who own the Great Meadows, and get the hay from year to year.''
''There is no such thing as accomplishing a righteous reform by the use of "expediency." There is no such thing as sliding up- hill. In morals the only sliders are backsliders.''
''Alas! the culture of an Irishman is an enterprise to be undertaken with a sort of moral bog hoe.''
''The virtue of making two blades of grass grow where only one grew before does not begin to be superhuman.''
''The same soil is good for men and for trees. A man's health requires as many acres of meadow to his prospect as his farm does loads of muck.''
''I think that he must be the man of the most faith of any alive.''
''The wonderful purity of nature at this season is a most pleasing fact.... In the bare fields and tinkling woods, see what virtue survives. In the coldest and bleakest places, the warmest charities still maintain a foothold.''
''I see less difference between a city and a swamp than formerly.''
''They have been foolish enough to put at the end of all this earnest the old joke of a diploma. Let every sheep keep but his own skin, I say.''
''We know but few men, a great many coats and breeches.''
''In the graveyard, which was crowded with graves, and overrun with weeds, I noticed an inscription in Indian, painted on a wooden grave-board. There was a large wooden cross on the island.''
''I have always been regretting that I was not as wise as the day I was born.''
''Nature and human life are as various as our several constitutions. Who shall say what prospect life offers to another?''
''You must ascend a mountain to learn your relation to matter, and so to your own body, for it is at home there, though you are not.''
''There was now no road further, the river being the only highway, and but half a dozen log huts, confined to its banks, to be met with for thirty miles. On either hand, and beyond, was a wholly uninhabited wilderness, stretching to Canada.''
''His style is eminently colloquial, and no wonder it is strange to meet with in a book. It is not literary or classical; it has not the music of poetry, nor the pomp of philosophy, but the rhythms and cadences of conversation endlessly repeated.''
''If the condition of things which we were made for is not yet, what were any reality which we can substitute? We will not be shipwrecked on a vain reality.''
''In Canada an ordinary New England house would be mistaken for the château, and while every village here contains at least several gentlemen or "squires," there is but one to a seigniory.''
''Any sincere thought is irresistible.''
''If you would get exercise, go in search of the springs of life.''
''You must not blame me if I do talk to the clouds.''
''A poem is one undivided, unimpeded expression fallen ripe into literature, and it is undividedly and unimpededly received by those for whom it was matured.''
''When one man has reduced a fact of the imagination to be a fact to his understanding, I foresee that all men will at length establish their lives on that basis.''
''While there we heard the Indian fire his gun twice.... This sudden, loud, crashing noise in the still aisles of the forest, affected me like an insult to nature, or ill manners at any rate, as if you were to fire a gun in a hall or temple.''
''A true account of the actual is the rarest poetry, for common sense always takes a hasty and superficial view.''
''The schools begin with what they call the elements, and where do they end?''
''As we looked up in silence to those distant lights, we were reminded that it was a rare imagination which first taught that the stars are worlds, and had conferred a great benefit on mankind.''
''Even in civilized communities, the embryo man passes through the hunter stage of development.''
''The heavens are as deep as our aspirations are high.''
''This is one of those instances in which the individual genius is found to consent, as indeed it always does, at last, with the universal.''
''The highest that we can attain to is not Knowledge, but Sympathy with Intelligence.''
''Nothing can rightly compel a simple and brave man to a vulgar sadness.''
''I am sorry to think that you do not get a man's most effective criticism until you provoke him. Severe truth is expressed with some bitterness.''
''The process of discovery is very simple. An unwearied and systematic application of known laws to nature causes the unknown to reveal themselves.''
''They did not hang him at once, but reserved him to preach to them.''
''I am more and more convinced that, with reference to any public question, it is more important to know what the country thinks of it than what the city thinks. The city does not think much.''
''Seeds, there are seeds enough which need only be stirred in with the soil where they lie, by an inspired voice or pen, to bear fruit of a divine flavor.''
''May we so love as never to have occasion to repent of our love!''
''To the sick the doctors wisely recommend a change of air and scenery.''
''The United States have a coffle of four millions of slaves. They are determined to keep them in this condition; and Massachusetts is one of the confederated overseers to prevent their escape.''
''When we walk, we naturally go to the fields and woods: what would become of us, if we walked only in a garden or a mall?''
''If to chaffer and higgle are bad in trade, they are much worse in Love. It demands directness as of an arrow.''
''There never was and is not likely soon to be a nation of philosophers, nor am I certain it is desirable that there should be.''
''Who hears the fishes when they cry?''
''The book has never been written which is to be accepted without any allowance.''
''Our moulting season, like that of the fowls, must be a crisis in our lives.''
''There are secret articles in our treaties with the gods, of more importance than all the rest, which the historian can never know.''
''The places which I have described may seem strange and remote to my townsmen ... our account may have made no impression on your minds. But what is our account? In it there is no roar, no beach-birds, no tow-cloth.''
''Some think it is bottomless.''
''Even the elephant carries but a small trunk on his journeys. The perfection of traveling is to travel without baggage.''
''He enjoys true leisure who has time to improve his soul's estate.''
''There is not one kind of food for all men. You must and you will feed those faculties which you exercise. The laborer whose body is weary does not require the same food with the scholar whose brain is weary.''
''These beginnings of commerce on a lake in the wilderness are very interesting,these larger white birds that come to keep company with the gulls.''
''At the extreme north, the voyagers are obliged to dance and act plays for employment.''
''Before the land rose out of the ocean, and became dry land, chaos reigned; and between high and low water mark, where she is partially disrobed and rising, a sort of chaos reigns still, which only anomalous creatures can inhabit.''
''We are for the most part more lonely when we go abroad among men than when we stay in our chambers.''
''Philosophy, having crept clinging to the rocks so far, puts out its feelers many ways in vain.''
''It suggested, too, that the same experience always gives birth to the same sort of belief or religion.''
''It was remarkable how easily he got along over the worst ground.''
''As for health, consider yourself well.''
''Drive a nail home and clinch it so faithfully that you can wake up in the night and think of your work with satisfaction,a work at which you would not be ashamed to invoke the Muse.''
''Such is always the pursuit of knowledge. The celestial fruits, the golden apples of the Hesperides, are ever guarded by a hundred-headed dragon which never sleeps, so that it is an Herculean labor to pluck them.''
''It looks like solidified azure, as, far off, it is drawn through the streets.''
''A man may grow rich in Turkey even, if he will be in all respects a good subject of the Turkish government.''
''Every man is the lord of a realm beside which the earthly empire of the Czar is but a petty state, a hummock left by the ice.''
''Friends and contemporaries should supply only the name and date, and leave it to posterity to write the epitaph.''
''The greater number of men are merely corporals.''
''Where shall we look for standard English but to the words of a standard man?''
''You know about a person who deeply interests you more than you can be told. A look, a gesture, an act, which to everybody else is insignificant tells you more about that one than words can.''
''The very nursery tales of this generation were the nursery tales of primeval races. They migrate from east to west, and again from west to east; now expanded into the "tale divine" of bards, now shrunk into a popular rhyme.''
''The opportunities of living are diminished in proportion as what are called the "means" are increased.''
''It is a surprising and memorable, as well as valuable experience, to be lost in the woods any time.''
''No domain of nature is quite closed to man at all times.''
''It would surpass the powers of a well man nowadays to take up his bed and walk, and I should certainly advise a sick one to lay down his bed and run.''
''The lichen on the rocks is a rude and simple shield which beginning and imperfect Nature suspended there. Still hangs her wrinkled trophy.''
''Night is certainly more novel and less profane than day.''
''Now he saw by the heap of shavings still fresh at his feet, that, for him and for his work, the former lapse of time had been an illusion.''
''There was nothing but that savage ocean between us and Europe.''
''The hard woods, occasionally occurring exclusively, were less wild to my eye. I fancied them ornamental grounds, with farmhouses in the rear.''
''Some are reputed sick and some are not. It often happens that the sicker man is the nurse to the sounder.''
''If you are a seer, whenever you meet a man you will see all that he owns, ay, and much that he pretends to disown, behind him.''
''Fresh curls spring from the baldest brow. There is nothing inorganic.''
''An unclean person is universally a slothful one.''
''On the death of a friend, we should consider that the fates through confidence have devolved on us the task of a double living, that we have henceforth to fulfill the promise of our friend's life also, in our own, to the world.''
''Books are the treasured wealth of the world and the fit inheritance of generations and nations.''
''Bribed with a little sunlight and a few prismatic tints, we bless our Maker, and stave off his wrath with hymns.''
''Character always ... is thus distinct and unrelated to near or trivial objects, whether things or persons.''
''It is not so important that many should be good as you, as that there be some absolute goodness somewhere; for that will leaven the whole lump.''
''There must be some nerve and heroism in our love, as of a winter morning.''
''Those services which the community will most readily pay for, it is most disagreeable to render.''
''You did not expect to find such spruce trees in the wild woods, but they evidently attend to their toilets each morning even there. Through such a front yard did we enter that wilderness.''
''Give me time enough, and I may like it.''
''Justice is sweet and musical; but injustice is harsh and discordant.''
''Why will men worry themselves so? He that does not eat need not work.''
''To tell the truth, I saw an advertisement for able-bodied seamen, when I was a boy, sauntering in my native port, and as soon as I came of age I embarked.''
''We have advanced by leaps to the Pacific, and left many a lesser Oregon and California unexplored behind us.''
''The effect of a good government is to make life more valuable; of a bad one, to make it less valuable.''
''Men will tell you sometimes that "money's hard." That shows it was not made to eat, I say.... Some of those who sank with the steamer the other day found out that money was heavy too.''
''I rejoice that there are owls.... They represent the stark twilight and unsatisfied thoughts which all have.''
''It would be no reproach to a philosopher, that he knew the future better than the past, or even than the present. It is better worth knowing.''
''Your richest veins don't lie nearest the surface.''
''Scholars are wont to sell their birthright for a mess of learning.''
''Think of our little eggshell of a canoe tossing across that great lake, a mere black speck to the eagle soaring above it!''
''The rarest quality in an epitaph is truth.''
''However mean your life is, meet it and live it; do not shun it and call it hard names. It is not so bad as you are. It looks poorest when you are richest.''
''Even in our democratic New England towns the accidental possession of wealth, and its manifestation in dress and equipage alone, obtain for the possessor almost universal respect.''
''Our poets have sung of wine, the product of a foreign plant which commonly they never saw, as if our own plants had no juice in them more than the singers.''
''I think that the farmer displaces the Indian even because he redeems the meadow, and so makes himself stronger and in some respects more natural.''
''I had a classmate who fitted for college by the lamps of a lighthouse, which was more light, we think, than the University afforded.''
''Is a democracy, such as we know it, the last improvement possible in government? Is it not possible to take a step further towards recognizing and organizing the rights of man?''
''According to my observation, a batteau, properly manned, shoots rapids as a matter of course, which a single Indian with a canoe carries round.''
''Philanthropy is almost the only virtue which is sufficiently appreciated by mankind. Nay, it is greatly overrated; and it is our selfishness which overrates it.''
''Do not trouble yourself much to get new things, whether clothes or friends.''
''Some of the taverns on this road, which were particularly dirty, were plainly in a transition state from the camp to the house.''
''Though seen but once, it helps to wash out State Street and the engine's soot.''
''In this matter of reforming the world, we have little faith in corporations; not thus was it first formed.''
''Who does not see that heresies have some time prevailed, that reforms have already taken place? All this worldly wisdom might be regarded as the once unamiable heresy of some wise man.''
''Let not the poet shed tears only for the public weal.''
''The words which express our faith and piety are not definite; yet they are significant and fragrant like frankincense to superior natures.''
''Kings and queens who wear a suit but once, though made by some tailor or dressmaker to their majesties, cannot know the comfort of wearing a suit that fits. They are no better than wooden horses to hang the clean clothes on.''
''What right have I to grieve, who have not ceased to wonder?''
''A simple and independent mind does not toil at the bidding of any prince.''
''Pity the man who has a character to supportit is worse than a large familyhe is silent poor indeed.''
''When will the world learn that a million men are of no importance compared with one man?''
''The merely political aspect of the land is never very cheering; men are degraded when considered as the members of a political organization.''
''New ideas come into this world somewhat like falling meteors, with a flash and an explosion, and perhaps somebody's castle-roof perforated.''
''The hawk is aerial brother of the wave which he sails over and surveys, those his perfect air-inflated wings answering to the elemental unfledged pinions of the sea.''
''The material was pure, and his art was pure; how could the result be other than wonderful?''
''As some heads cannot carry much wine, so it would seem that I cannot bear so much society as you can. I have an immense appetite for solitude, like an infant for sleep, and if I don't get enough of it this year, I shall cry all the next.''
''There is no just and serene criticism as yet.''
''"Having reached the term of his natural life"; Mwould it not be truer to say, Having reached the term of his unnatural life?''
''Our whole life is startingly moral. There is never an instant's truce between virtue and vice.''
''Public opinion is a weak tyrant compared with our own private opinion. What a man thinks of himself, that it is which determines, or rather indicates, his fate.''
''You must get your living by loving. But as it is said of the merchants that ninety-seven in a hundred fail, so the life of men generally, tried by this standard, is a failure, and bankruptcy may be surely prophesied.''
''Why do precisely these objects which we behold make a world? Why has man just these species of animals for his neighbors; as if nothing but a mouse could have filled this crevice?''
''It was always startling to discover so plain a trail of civilized man there. I remember that I was strangely affected, when we were returning, by the sight of a ring-bolt well drilled into a rock, and fastened with lead, at the head of this solitary Ambejijis Lake.''
''Not till we are lost, in other words not till we have lost the world, do we begin to find ourselves, and realize where we are and the infinite extent of our relations.''
''The universe expects every man to do his duty in his parallel of latitude.''
''We are in great haste to construct a magnetic telegraph from Maine to Texas; but Maine and Texas, it may be, have nothing important to communicate.''
''When the State wishes to endow an academy or university, it grants it a tract of forest land: one saw represents an academy, a gang, a university.''
''When a noble deed is done, who is likely to appreciate it? They who are noble themselves.''
''Yet we must try the harder, the less the prospect of success.''
''It is true enough, Cambridge college is really beginning to wake up and redeem its character and overtake the age.''
''Love is the profoundest of secrets. Divulged, even to the beloved, it is no longer Love. As if it were merely I that loved you. When love ceases, then it is divulged.''
''By one bait or another, Nature allures inhabitants into all her recesses.''
''How cheap must be the material of which so many men are made!''
''The impression made on a wise man is that of universal innocence. Poison is not poisonous after all, nor are any wounds fatal. Compassion is a very untenable ground. It must be expeditious. Its pleadings will not bear to be stereotyped.''
''One may be drunk with love without being any nearer to finding his mate.''
''It has been so written, for the most part, that the times it describes are with remarkable propriety called dark ages. They are dark, as one has observed, because we are so in the dark about them.''
''If you indulge in long periods, you must be sure to have a snapper at the end.''
''They who have been bred in the school of politics fail now and always to face the facts. Their measures are half measures and makeshifts merely. They put off the day of settlement, and meanwhile the debt accumulates.''
''How many things are now at loose ends! Who knows which way the wind will blow tomorrow?''
''A sentence should read as if its author, had he held a plow instead of a pen, could have drawn a furrow deep and straight to the end.''
''A hero's love is as delicate as a maiden's.''
''Gentleness and delicacy of character are everywhere apparent in his verse. The simplest and humblest words come readily to his lips.''
''As for Clothing, to come at once to the practical part of the question, perhaps we are led oftener by the love of novelty and a regard for the opinions of men, in procuring it, than by a true utility.''
''A counterfeiting law-factory, standing half in a slave land and half in a free! What kind of laws for free men can you expect from that?''
''We shall be reduced to gnaw the very crust of the earth for nutriment.''
''Being is the great explainer.''
''Our circumstances answer to our expectations and the demand of our natures.''
''Through our own recovered innocence we discern the innocence of our neighbors.''
''All sound heard at the greatest possible distance produces one and the same effect, a vibration of the universal lyre, just as the intervening atmosphere makes a distant ridge of earth interesting to our eyes by the azure tint it imparts to it.''
''It is by a mathematical point only that we are wise, as the sailor or the fugitive slave keeps the polestar in his eye; but that is sufficient guidance for all our life. We may not arrive at our port within a calculable period, but we would preserve the true course.''
''How meanly and grossly do we deal with nature!''
''I think that for once the Sharp's rifles and the revolvers were employed in a righteous cause.''
''For a man to act himself, he must be perfectly free; otherwise he is in danger of losing all sense of responsibility or of self- respect.''
''The traveller on the prarie is naturally a hunter, on the head waters of the Missouri and Columbia a trapper, and at the Falls of St. Mary a fisherman.''
''This universal exhibition in Canada of the tools and sinews of war reminded me of the keeper of a menagerie showing his animals' claws. It was the English leopard showing his claws.''
''Truly an interesting spot to stand on,if that were it,though you could not sit down there.''
''Superfluous wealth can buy superfluities only. Money is not required to buy one necessary of the soul.''
''I never dreamed of any enormity greater than I have committed. I never knew, and never shall know, a worse man than myself.''
''Who but the Evil One has cried "Whoa!" to mankind?''
''At present our only true names are nicknames.''
''The Xanthus or Scamander is not a mere dry channel and bed of a mountain torrent, but fed by the ever-flowing springs of fame ... and I trust that I may be allowed to associate our muddy but much abused Concord River with the most famous in history.''
''There is a certain perfection in accident which we never consciously attain.''
''Every tree sends its fibres forth in search of the Wild. The cities import it at any price. Men plow and sail for it. From the forest and wilderness come the tonics and barks which brace mankind.''
''Methinks I am never quite committed, never wholly the creature of my moods, but always to some extent their critic. My only integral experience is in my vision. I see, perchance, with more integrity than I feel.''
''As we drew near to Oldtown I asked Polis if he was not glad to get home again; but there was no relenting to his wildness, and he said, "It makes no difference to me where I am." Such is the Indian's pretense always.''
''The world rests on principles.''
''No man ever followed his genius till it misled him.''
''There are some things which a man never speaks of, which are much finer kept silent about. To the highest communications we only lend a silent ear.''
''Unless our philosophy hears the cock crow in every barn-yard within our horizon, it is belated. That sound commonly reminds us that we are growing rusty and antique in our employments and habits of thought.''
''Friendship is never established as an understood relation.... It is a miracle which requires constant proofs. It is an exercise of the purest imagination and the rarest faith.''
''What recommends commerce to me is its enterprise and bravery.''
''In love and friendship the imagination is as much exercised as the heart; and if either is outraged the other will be estranged. It is commonly the imagination which is wounded first, rather than the heart,it is so much the more sensitive.''
''It gets laughed at because it is a small town, I know, but nevertheless it is a place where great men may be born any day, for fair winds and foul blow right on over it without distinction.''
''There are certain pursuits which, if not wholly poetic and true, do at least suggest a nobler and finer relation to nature than we know. The keeping of bees, for instance.''
''I am resolved that I will not through humility become the devil's attorney. I will endeavor to speak a good word for the truth.''
''We slander the hyena; man is the fiercest and cruelest animal.''
''The poet is blithe and cheery ever, and as well as nature.''
''Men and boys are learning all kinds of trades but how to make men of themselves. They learn to make houses; but they are not so well housed, they are not so contented in their houses, as the woodchucks in their holes.''
''The very dew seemed to hang upon the trees later into the day than usual, as on the sides of mountains.''
''If rightly made, a boat would be a sort of amphibious animal, a creature of two elements, related by one half its structure to some swift and shapely fish, and by the other to some strong-winged and graceful bird.''
''It is said that a rogue does not look you in the face, neither does an honest man look at you as if he had his reputation to establish.''
''Translate a book a dozen times from one language to another, and what becomes of its style? Most books would be worn out and disappear in this ordeal. The pen which wrote it is soon destroyed, but the poem survives.''
''It is a momentous fact that a man may be good, or he may be bad; his life may be true, or it may be false; it may be either a shame or a glory to him. The good man builds himself up; the bad man destroys himself.''
''The progress from an absolute to a limited monarchy, from a limited monarchy to a democracy, is a progress toward a true respect for the individual.''
''I am wont to think that men are not so much the keepers of herds as herds are the keepers of men, the former are so much the freer.''
''It is the art of mankind to polish the world, and every one who works is scrubbing in some part.''
''The citadel of Quebec says, "I will live here, and you shan't prevent me." To which you return, that you have not the slightest objection; live and let live.''
''The surface of the ground in the Maine woods is everywhere spongy and saturated with moisture.''
''To speak impartially, the best men that I know are not serene, a world in themselves. For the most part, they dwell in forms, and flatter and study effect only more finely than the rest.''
''It will always be found that one flourishing institution exists and battens on another mouldering one. The Present itself is parasitic to this extent.''
''You don't know your testament when you see it.''
''We are superior to the joy we experience.''
''Gradually the village murmur subsided, and we seemed to be embarked on the placid current of our dreams, floating from past to future as silently as one awakes to fresh morning or evening thoughts.''
''All questions rely on the present for their solution. Time measures nothing but itself. The word that is written may be postponed, but not that on the lip. If this is what the occasion says, let the occasion say it.''
''The lawyer's truth is not Truth, but consistency or a consistent expediency.''
''I have seen how the foundations of the world are laid, and I have not the least doubt that it will stand a good while.''
''All the moral laws are readily translated into natural philosophy, for often we have only to restore the primitive meaning of the words by which they are expressed, or to attend to their literal instead of their metaphorical sense. They are already supernatural philosophy.''
''You can always see a face in the fire.''
''Most of the stone a nation hammers goes toward its tomb only. It buries itself alive.''
''There is something even in the lapse of time by which time recovers itself.''
''A man's interest in a single bluebird is worth more than a complete but dry list of the fauna and flora of a town.''
''The books for young people say a great deal about the selection of Friends; it is because they really have nothing to say about Friends. They mean associates and confidants merely.''
''At least let us have healthy books.''
''What we need to know in any case is very simple.''
''It is as when a migrating army of mice girdles a forest of pines. The chopper fells trees from the same motive that the mouse gnaws them,to get his living. You tell me that he has a more interesting family than the mouse. That is as it happens.''
''Concord's little arch does not span all our fate, nor is what transpires under it law for the universe.''
''If private men are obliged to perform the offices of government, to protect the weak and dispense justice, then the government becomes only a hired man, or clerk, to perform menial or indifferent services.''
''As if you could kill time without injuring eternity.''
''If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away.''
''What is chastity? How shall a man know if he is chaste? He shall not know it. We have heard of this virtue, but we know not what it is.''
''Why should we live with such hurry and waste of life? We are determined to be starved before we are hungry.''
''The object of love expands and grows before us to eternity, until it includes all that is lovely, and we become all that can love.''
''When the reptile is attacked at one mouth of his burrow, he shows himself at another.''
''This lighthouse was the cynosure of all eyes.''
''So near along life's stream are the fountains of innocence and youth making fertile its sandy margin; and the voyageur will do well to replenish his vessels often at these uncontaminated sources.''
''What a place to live, what a place to die and be buried in!''
''There never is but one opportunity of a kind.''
''When I meet a government which says to me, "Your money or your life," why should I be in haste to give it my money?''
''What is called resignation is confirmed desperation.''
''To some extent, and at rare intervals, even I am a yogi.''
''Instead of water we got here a draught of beer,... a lumberer's drink, which would acclimate and naturalize a man at once,which would make him see green, and, if he slept, dream that he heard the wind sough among the pines.''
''Politics is, as it were, the gizzard of society, full of grit and gravel, and the two political parties are its two opposite halves,sometimes split into quarters, it may be, which grind on each other.''
''I believe that every man who has ever been earnest to preserve his higher or poetic faculties in the best condition has been particularly inclined to abstain from animal food, and from much food of any kind.''
''There are words in that letter to his wife, respecting the education of his daughters, which deserve to be framed and hung over every mantelpiece in the land. Compare this earnest wisdom with that of Poor Richard.''
''What is man but a mass of thawing clay?''
''The outward is only the outside of that which is within. Men are not concealed under habits, but are revealed by them; they are their true clothes.''
''Truth is his inspirer, and earnestness the polisher of his sentences. He could afford to lose his Sharp's rifles, while he retained his faculty of speech,a Sharp's rifle of infinitely surer and longer range.''
''What stuff is the man made of who is not coexistent in our thought with the purest and sublimest truth?''
''It would be some advantage to live a primitive and frontier life, though in the midst of an outward civilization, if only to learn what are the gross necessaries of life and what methods have been taken to obtain them.''
''He who rides and keeps the beaten track studies the fences chiefly.''
''It was his peculiar doctrine that a man has a perfect right to interfere by force with the slaveholder, in order to rescue the slave. I agree with him.''
''Why do you ever mend your clothes, unless that, wearing them, you may mend your ways. Let us sing.''
''The rays which stream through the shutter will be no longer remembered when the shutter is wholly removed.''
''I should have liked to come across a large community of pines, which had never been invaded by the lumbering army.''
''What men call social virtues, good fellowship, is commonly but the virtue of pigs in a litter, which lie close together to keep each other warm.''
''An honest, hard-working, but shiftless man plainly was John Field.''
''The sentinel with his musket beside a man with his umbrella is spectral. There is not sufficient reason for his existence.''
''I would that I were worthy to be any man's Friend.''
''I have been as sincere a worshipper of Aurora as the Greeks.''
''The fact that Romans once inhabited her reflects no little dignity on Nature herself; that from some particular hill the Roman once looked out on the sea.''
''The fault-finder will find faults even in paradise.''
''The most distinct and beautiful statement of any truth must take at last the mathematical form.''
''There is no rule more invariable than that we are paid for our suspicions by finding what we suspected.''
''Wherever there is a channel for water, there is a road for the canoe.''
''The village appeared to me a great news room.''
''The very timber and boards and shingles of which our houses are made grew but yesterday in a wilderness where the Indian still hunts and the moose runs wild.''
''To sum up our most serious objections in a few words, we should say that Carlyle indicates a depthand we mean not impliedly, but distinctlywhich he neglects to fathom.''
''The shallowest still water is unfathomable. Wherever the trees and skies are reflected, there is more than Atlantic depth, and no danger of fancy running aground.''
''Thus our life is not altogether a forgetting, but also, alas! to a great extent, a remembering, of that which we should never have been conscious of, certainly not in our waking hours.''
''I think that Pilgrim's Progress is the best sermon which has been preached from this text; almost all other sermons that I have heard, or heard of, have been but poor imitations of this.''
''Perhaps these pages are more particularly addressed to poor students. As for the rest of my readers, they will accept such portions as apply to them.''
''I did not go to Boston, for with regard to that place I sympathize with one of my neighbors, an old man, who has not been there since the last war, when he was compelled to go. No, I have a real genius for staying at home.''
''If Columbus was the first to discover the islands, Americus Vespucius and Cabot, and the Puritans, and we their descendants, have discovered only the shores of America.''
''Why level downward to our dullest perception always, and praise that as common sense? The commonest sense is the sense of men asleep, which they express by snoring.''
''Instead of singing like the birds, I silently smiled at my incessant good fortune.''
''In my walks I would fain return to my senses.''
''To be a philosopher is not merely to have subtle thoughts, nor even to found a school, but so to love wisdom as to live according to its dictates a life of simplicity, independence, magnanimity, and trust. It is to solve some of the problems of life, not only theoretically, but practically.''
''I should fear the infinite power and inflexible justice of the almighty mortal hardly as yet apotheosized, so wholly masculine, with no sister Juno, no Apollo, no Venus, nor Minerva, to intercede for me, thumoi phileousa te, kedomene te.''
''The walls that fence our fields, as well as modern Rome, and not less the Parthenon itself, are all built of ruins.''
''Our life without love is coke and ashes.''
''So far as inland discovery was concerned, the adventurous spirit of the English was that of sailors who land but for a day, and their enterprise the enterprise of traders.''
''When a shadow flits across the landscape of the soul where is the substance?''
''These ice-cutters are a merry race, full of jest and sport, and when I went among them they were wont to invite me to saw pit-fashion with them, I standing underneath.''
''The monster is never just there where we think he is. What is truly monstrous is our cowardice and sloth.''
''It is surprising how many great men and women a small house will contain. I have had twenty-five or thirty souls, with their bodies, at once under my roof, and yet we often parted without being aware that we had come very near to one another.''
''It is a truer truth, it is better and fairer news, and no time will ever shame it, or prove it false.''
''You fail in your thoughts, or you prevail in your thoughts only.''
''I am not afraid of praise, for I have practiced it on myself.''
''The strongest wind cannot stagger a Spirit; it is a Spirit's breath. A just man's purpose cannot be split on any Grampus or material rock, but itself will split rocks till it succeeds.''
''The fable, which is naturally and truly composed, so as to satisfy the imagination, ere it addresses the understanding, beautiful though strange as a wild-flower, is to the wise man an apothegm, and admits of his most generous interpretation.''
''You come from attending the funeral of mankind to attend to a natural phenomenon. A little thought is sexton to all the world.''
''As in geology, so in social institutions, we may discover the causes of all past changes in the present invariable order of society.''
''Rather than love, than money, than fame, give me truth.''
''It is a characteristic of wisdom not to do desperate things.''
''The government of the world I live in was not framed, like that of Britain, in after-dinner conversations over the wine.''
''Let us spend one day as deliberately as Nature, and not be thrown off the track by every nutshell and mosquito's wing that falls on the rails.''
''Exaggerated history is poetry, and truth referred to a new standard.''
''Apples, these I mean, unspeakably fair,apples not of Discord, but of Concord!''
''Instead of the scream of a fish hawk scaring the fishes, is heard the whistle of the steam-engine, arousing a country to its progress.''
''Be sure that you give the poor the aid they most need, though it be your example which leaves them far behind. If you give money, spend yourself with it, and do not merely abandon it to them.''
''If you would feel the full force of a tempest, take up your residence on the top of Mount Washington, or at the Highland Light, in Truro.''
''What a glorious time they must have in that wilderness, far from mankind and election day!''
''There is reason in the distinction of civil and uncivil. The manners are sometimes so rough a rind that we doubt whether they cover any core or sap-wood at all.''
''Individuals, like nations, must have suitable broad and natural boundaries, even a considerable neutral ground, between them.''
''The most attractive sentences are, perhaps, not the wisest, but the surest and roundest. They are spoken firmly and conclusively, as if the speaker had a right to know what he says, and if not wise, they have at least been well learned.''
''Chastity is the flowering of man; and what are called Genius, Heroism, Holiness, and the like, are but various fruits which succeed it.''
''There is absolutely no common sense; it is common nonsense.''
''You boast of spending a tenth part of your income in charity; maybe you should spend the nine tenths so, and done with it.''
''Men have a singular desire to be good without being good for anything, because, perchance, they think vaguely that so it will be good for them in the end.''
''He who hears the rippling of rivers in these degenerate days will not utterly despair.''
''The moose is singularly grotesque and awkward to look at. Why should it stand so high at the shoulders? Why have so long a head? Why have no tail to speak of?''
''And so the seasons went rolling on into summer, as one rambles into higher and higher grass.''
''I believe that in this country the press exerts a greater and a more pernicious influence than the church did in its worst period.''
''All the hills blush; I think that autumn must be the best season to journey over even the Green Mountains. You frequently exclaim to yourself, What red maples!''
''I love a broad margin to my life.''
''I see that I must get a few dollars together presently to manure my roots.''
''The richest gifts we can bestow are the least marketable. We hate the kindness which we understand.''
''There are only two or three couples in history.''
''It is remarkable that there are few men so well employed, so much to their minds, but that a little money or fame would commonly buy them off from their present pursuit.''
''Reform keeps many scores of newspapers in its service, but not one man.''
''It is strange that they will make ado when a man's body is buried, but not when he thus really and tragically dies, or seems to die.''
''This is the only panacea. I mean sincerity in our dealings with ourselves mainly; any other is comparatively easy.''
''What exercise is to the body, employment is to the mind and morals.''
''The perch swallows the grub-worm, the pickerel swallows the perch, and the fisherman swallows the pickerel; and so all the chinks in the scale of being are filled.''
''It is surprising how contented one can be with nothing definite,only a sense of existence. Well, anything for variety.''
''He was a lucky fox that left his tail in the trap. The muskrat will gnaw his third leg off to be free. No wonder man has lost his elasticity.''
''Nations are possessed with an insane ambition to perpetuate the memory of themselves by the amount of hammered stone they leave. What if equal pains were taken to smooth and polish their manners?''
''I suppose that the great questions of "Fate, Freewill, Foreknowledge Absolute," which used to be discussed at Concord, are still unsettled.''
''Turn the old; return to them.''
''Art is not tame, and Nature is not wild, in the ordinary sense. A perfect work of man's art would also be wild or natural in a good sense.''
''It is a war against the pines, the only real Aroostook or Penobscot war.''
''I could not undertake to form a nucleus of an institution for the development of infant minds, where none already existed. It would be too cruel.''
''What youth or maiden conspires with the wild luxuriant beauty of Nature? She flourishes most alone, far from the towns where they reside.''
''The world, which the Greeks called Beauty, has been made such by being gradually divested of every ornament which was not fitted to endure.''
''The sun rarely shines in history, what with the dust and confusion; and when we meet with any cheering fact which implies the presence of this luminary, we excerpt and modernize it.''
''In my short experience of human life, the outward obstacles, if there were any such, have not been living men, but the institutions of the dead.''
''It is no more dusky in ordinary nights than our mind's habitual atmosphere, and the moonlight is as bright as our most illuminated moments are.''
''Alas! how little does the memory of these human inhabitants enhance the beauty of the landscape!''
''This people must cease to hold slaves, and to make war on Mexico, though it cost them their existence as a people.''
''We are often reminded that if there were bestowed on us the wealth of Crsus, our aims must still be the same, and our means essentially the same.''
''It was evident that the same foolish respect was not here claimed for mere wealth and station that is in many parts of New England; yet some of them were the "first people," as they are called, of the various towns through which we passed.''
''Could slavery suggest a more complete servility than some of these journals exhibit? Is there any dust which their conduct does not lick, and make fouler still with its slime?''
''The fact which interests us most is the life of the naturalist. The purest science is still biographical.''
''The buds swell imperceptibly, without hurry or confusion, as if the short spring days were an eternity.''
''The sea, vast and wild as it is, bears thus the waste and wrecks of human art to its remotest shore. There is no telling what it may not vomit up.''
''To be awake is to be alive. I have never yet met a man who was quite awake. How could I have looked him in the face?''
''Keep up the fires of thought, and all will go well.''
''The learned societies and great men of Assyria,where are they?''
''In this part of the world it is considered a ground for complaint if a man's writings admit of more than one interpretation.''
''There is commonly sufficient space about us. Our horizon is never quite at our elbows.''
''To him whose elastic and vigorous thought keeps pace with the sun, the day is a perpetual morning. It matters not what the clocks say or the attitudes and labors of men. Morning is when I am awake and there is a dawn in me.''
''In dreams we see ourselves naked and acting out our real characters, even more clearly than we see others awake.''
''I do not believe there are eight hundred human beings on the globe.''
''Economy is a subject which admits of being treated with levity, but it cannot so be disposed of.''
''At the same time that we are earnest to explore and learn all things, we require that all things be mysterious and unexplorable, that land and sea be infinitely wild, unsurveyed and unfathomed by us because unfathomable.''
''We are accustomed to say, that the mass of men are unprepared; but improvement is slow, because the few are not materially wiser or better than the many.''
''Inexpressibly beautiful appears the recognition by man of the least natural fact, and the allying his life to it.''
''To speak or do anything that shall concern mankind, one must speak and act as if well, or from that grain of health which he has left.''
''We should endeavor practically in our lives to correct all the defects which our imagination detects.''
''Roads are made for horses and men of business. I do not travel in them much.''
''If you can speak what you will never hear, if you can write what you will never read, you have done rare things.''
''It is difficult to begin without borrowing, but perhaps it is the most generous course thus to permit your fellow-men to have an interest in your enterprise.''
''It must be confessed that horses at present work too exclusively for men, rarely men for horses; and the brute degenerates in man's society.''
''The book exists for us, perchance, which will explain our miracles and reveal new ones.''
''When the villagers were lighting their fires beyond the horizon, I too gave notice to the various wild inhabitants of Walden vale, by a smoky streamer from my chimney, that I was awake.''
''Insane!... Ask the tyrant who is his most dangerous foe, the sane man or the insane?''
''Other roads do some violence to Nature, and bring the traveler to stare at her, but the river steals into the scenery it traverses without intrusion, silently creating and adorning it, and is as free to come and go as the zephyr.''
''I do not propose to write an ode to dejection, but to brag as lustily as chanticleer in the morning, standing on his roost, if only to wake my neighbors up.''
''As long as there is satire, the poet is, as it were, particeps criminis.''
''We have as yet had no adequate account of a primitive pine forest.''
''This is ancient Billerica (Villerica?), now in its dotage, named from the English Billericay, and whose Indian name was Shawshine. I never heard that it was young.''
''Far travel, very far travel, or travail, comes near to the worth of staying at home.''
''But the eyes, though they are no sailors, will never be satisfied with any model, however fashionable, which does not answer all the requisitions of art.''
''There is more of good nature than of good sense at the bottom of most marriages.''
''I have been accustomed to make excursions to the ponds within ten miles of Concord, but latterly I have extended my excursions to the seashore.''
''What a troublesome thing a wall is! I thought it was to defend me, and not I it! Of course, if they had no wall, they would not need to have any sentinels.''
''In what concerns you much, do not think that you have companions: know that you are alone in the world.''
''Man makes very much such a nest for his domestic animals, of withered grass and fodder, as the squirrels and many other wild creatures do for themselves.''
''It is better to have your head in the clouds, and know where you are ... than to breathe the clearer atmosphere below them, and think that you are in paradise.''
''The steadfast shores never once turned aside for us, but still trended as they were made; why then should we always turn aside for them?''
''We would not always be soothing and taming nature, breaking the horse and the ox, but sometimes ride the horse wild and chase the buffalo.''
''In the production of the necessaries of life Nature is ready enough to assist man.''
''The Indian said a particularly long prayer this Sunday evening, as if to atone for working in the morning.''
''When we are in health, all sounds fife and drum for us; we hear the notes of music in the air, or catch its echoes dying away when we awake in the dawn.''
''I have thought there was some advantage even in death, by which we "mingle with the herd of common men."''
''As for the graces of expression, a great thought is never found in a mean dress; but ... the nine Muses and the three Graces will have conspired to clothe it in fit phrase. Its education has always been liberal, and its implied wit can endow a college.''
''I believe that men are generally still a little afraid of the dark, though the witches are all hung, and Christianity and candles have been introduced.''
''The newest is but the oldest made visible to our senses.''
''Commonly men will only be brave as their fathers were brave, or timid.''
''There should always be some flowering and maturing of the fruits of nature in the cooking process.''
''My excuse for not lecturing against the use of tobacco is, that I never chewed it; that is a penalty which reformed tobacco-chewers have to pay; though there are things enough I have chewed which I could lecture against.''
''High treason, when it is resistance to tyranny here below, has its origin in, and is first committed by, the power that makes and forever re-creates man.''
''The news we hear, for the most part, is not news to our genius. It is the stalest repetition.''
''How much sincere life before we can even utter one sincere word.''
''Our vices always lie in the direction of our virtues, and in their best estate are but plausible imitations of the latter.''
''I am convinced, that if all men were to live as simply as I then did, thieving and robbery would be unknown. These take place only in communities where some have got more than is sufficient while others have not enough.''
''Any moral philosophy is exceedingly rare. This of Menu addresses our privacy more than most. It is a more private and familiar, and at the same time, a more public and universal word, than is spoken in parlor or pulpit nowadays.''
''The American has dwindled into an Odd Fellowone who may be known by the development of his organ of gregariousness.''
''I was struck by this universal spring upward of the forest evergreens.''
''Yet poetry, though the last and finest result, is a natural fruit. As naturally as the oak bears an acorn, and the vine a gourd, man bears a poem, either spoken or done. It is the chief and most memorable success, for history is but a prose narrative of poetic deeds.''
''I have a great deal of company in my house; especially in the morning, when nobody calls.''
''Such is the never-failing beauty and accuracy of language, the most perfect art in the world; the chisel of a thousand years retouches it.''
''Such were garrulous and noisy eras, which no longer yield any sound, but the Grecian or silent and melodious era is ever sounding and resounding in the ears of men.''
''Here or nowhere is our heaven.''
''All climates agree with brave Chanticleer. He is more indigenous even than the natives. His health is ever good, his lungs are sound, his spirits never flag.''
''I have learned that the swiftest traveller is he that goes afoot.''
''A town is saved, not more by the righteous men in it than by the woods and swamps that surround it.''
''The lover wants no partiality. He says, Be so kind as to be just.''
''The amount of it is, if a man is alive, there is always danger that he may die, though the danger must be allowed to be less in proportion as he is dead-and-alive to begin with. A man sits as many risks as he runs.''
''If I choose to devote myself to certain labors which yield more real profit, though but little money, they may be inclined to look on me as an idler.''
''The experience of every past moment but belies the faith of each present.''
''Humility like darkness reveals the heavenly lights. The shadows of poverty and meanness gather around us, "and lo! creation widens to our view."''
''The condition-of-England question is a practical one. The condition of England demands a hero, not a poet.''
''Improve every opportunity to be melancholy.''
''That is mere sentimentality that lies abed by day and thinks itself white, far from the tan and callus of experience.''
''Do not read the newspapers.''
''Give me a country where it is the most natural thing in the world for a government that does not understand you to let you alone.''
''Beside some philosophers of larger vision, Carlyle stands like an honest, half-despairing boy, grasping at some details only of their world systems.''
''The Universal Soul, as it is called, has an interest in the stacking of hay, the foddering of cattle, and the draining of peat-meadows.''
''Books can only reveal us to ourselves, and as often as they do us this service we lay them aside.''
''The lumberers rarely trouble themselves to put out their fires, such is the dampness of the primitive forest; and this is one cause, no doubt, of the frequent fires in Maine, of which we hear so much on smoky days in Massachusetts.''
''I am too easily contented with a slight and almost animal happiness. My happiness is a good deal like that of the woodchucks.''
''A man is rich in proportion to the number of things which he can afford to let alone.''
''Genius is not a retainer to any emperor.''
''Every man casts a shadow; not his body only, but his imperfectly mingled spirit. This is his grief. Let him turn which way he will, it falls opposite to the sun; short at noon, long at eve. Did you never see it?''
''In my cheapest moments I am apt to think that it is n't my business to be "seeking the spirit," but as much its business to be seeking me.''
''An Indian's teeth are strong, and I noticed that he used his often where we should have used a hand. They amounted to a third hand.''
''All fables, indeed, have their morals; but the innocent enjoy the story.''
''Let a man take time enough for the most trivial deed, though it be but the paring of his nails.''
''Every child begins the world again, to some extent, and loves to stay outdoors, even in wet and cold. It plays house, as well as horse, having an instinct for it.''
''That Cabot merely landed on the uninhabitable shore of Labrador gave the English no just title to New England, or to the United States generally, any more than to Patagonia.''
''It is rare to find one who was so much of a poet and so little of an artist.''
''I look upon England today as an old gentleman who is travelling with a great deal of baggage, trumpery which has accumulated from long housekeeping, which he has not the courage to burn.''
''Why will we be imposed on by antiquity?''
''The imagination never forgets; it is a re-membering. It is not foundationless, but most reasonable, and it alone uses all the knowledge of the intellect.''
''I have not the most definite designs on the future.''
''Years were not required for a revolution of public opinion; days, nay hours, produced marked changes in this case.''
''Truth is always in harmony with herself, and is not concerned chiefly to reveal the justice that may consist with wrong-doing.''
''Can love be in aught allied to dissipation? Let us love by refusing, not accepting one another. Love and lust are far asunder. The one is good, the other bad.''
''I never voyaged so far in all my life.''
''Having come to it so recently and freshly, it has the greater charm, so that I cannot find any to talk with about it.''
''But labor of the hands, even when pursued to the verge of drudgery, is perhaps never the worst form of idleness. It has a constant and imperishable moral, and to the scholar it yields a classic result.''
''This event advertises me that there is such a fact as death,the possibility of a man's dying. It seems as if no man had ever died in America before; for in order to die you must first have lived.''
''The best way to correct a mistake is to make it right.''
''Truly the stars were given for a consolation to man.''
''We are older by faith than by experience.''
''On every hand we observe a truly wise practice, in education, in morals, and in the arts of life, the embodied wisdom of many an ancient philosopher.''
''Fame itself is but an epitaph; as late, as false, as true.''
''Every generation laughs at the old fashions, but follows religiously the new.''
''A thoroughbred business man cannot enter heartily upon the business of life without first looking into his accounts.''
''I have not read of any Arcadian life which surpasses the actual luxury and serenity of these New England dwellings. For the outward gilding, at least, the age is golden enough.''
''If I were consciously to join any party, it would be that which is the most free to entertain thought.''
''It is a great pleasure to escape sometimes from the restless class of Reformers. What if these grievances exist? So do you and I.''
''How prompt we are to satisfy the hunger and thirst of our bodies; how slow to satisfy the hunger and thirst of our souls!''
''The Artist is he who detects and applies the law from observation of the works of Genius, whether of man or Nature. The Artisan is he who merely applies the rules which others have detected.''
''Most men appear never to have considered what a house is, and are actually though needlessly poor all their lives because they think they must have such a one as their neighbors have.''
''In short, as a snow-drift is formed where there is a lull in the wind, so, one would say, where there is a lull of truth, an institution springs up. But the truth blows right on over it, nevertheless, and at length blows it down.''
''His genius can cover all the land with gorgeous palaces, but the reader does not abide in them, but pitches his tent rather in the desert and on the mountain-peak.''
''How shall we account for our pursuits, if they are original? We get the language with which to describe our various lives out of a common mint.''
''This sort of gingerbread is baked daily and more sedulously than pure wheat or rye- and-Indian in almost every oven, and finds a surer market.''
''The almost universal bareness and smoothness of the landscape were as agreeable as novel, making it so much more like the deck of a vessel.''
''Knowledge does not come to us by details, but in flashes of light from heaven.''
''A modern author would have died in infancy in a ruder age.''
''What a pity if we do not live this short time according to the laws of the long time,the eternal laws!''
''It enhances our sense of the grand security and serenity of nature to observe the still undisturbed economy and content of the fishes of this century, their happiness a regular fruit of the summer.''
''This whole earth which we inhabit is but a point in space.''
''Great men, unknown to their generation, have their fame among the great who have preceded them, and all true worldly fame subsides from their high estimate beyond the stars.''
''The title wise is, for the most part, falsely applied. How can one be a wise man, if he does not know any better how to live than other men?if he is only more cunning and intellectually subtle?''
''Both place and time were changed, and I dwelt nearer to those parts of the universe and to those eras in history which had most attracted me.''
''Nature confounds her summer distinctions at this season. The heavens seem to be nearer the earth. The elements are less reserved and distinct. Water turns to ice, rain to snow. The day is but a Scandinavian night. The winter is an arctic summer.''
''All men are children, and of one family. The same tale sends them all to bed, and wakes them in the morning.''
''There are moments when all anxiety and stated toil are becalmed in the infinite leisure and repose of nature.''
''We commonly do not remember that it is, after all, always the first person that is speaking.''
''Love must be as much a light as a flame.''
''Each humblest plant, or weed, as we call it, stands there to express some thought or mood of ours; and yet how long it stands in vain!... Beauty and true wealth are always thus cheap and despised.''
''To act collectively is according to the spirit of our institutions.''
''A healthy man, indeed, is the complement of the seasons, and in winter, summer is in his heart.''
''I say, beware of all enterprises that require new clothes, and not rather a new wearer of clothes.''
''The student may read Homer or Æschylus in the Greek without danger of dissipation or luxuriousness, for it implies that he in some measure emulate their heroes, and consecrate morning hours to their pages.''
''The present hour is always wealthiest when it is poorer than the future ones, as that is the pleasantest site which affords the pleasantest prospects.''
''If I ever see more clearly at one time than at another, the medium through which I see is clearer.''
''We never exchange more than three words with a Friend in our lives on that level to which our thoughts and feelings almost habitually rise.''
''The country is an archipelago of lakes,the lake-country of New England.''
''Yes, though you may think me perverse, if it were proposed to me to dwell in the neighborhood of the most beautiful garden that ever human art contrived, or else of a Dismal Swamp, I should certainly decide for the swamp.''
''In society you will not find health, but in nature. Unless our feet at least stood in the midst of nature, all our faces would be pale and livid. Society is always diseased, and the best is the most so.''
''Shall we with pains erect a heaven of blue glass over ourselves, though when it is done we shall be sure to gaze still at the true ethereal heaven far above, as if the former were not?''
''The artist and his work are not to be separated. The most willfully foolish man cannot stand aloof from his folly, but the deed and the doer together make ever one sober fact.''
''Whatever beauty we behold, the more it is distant, serene, and cold, the purer and more durable it is. It is better to warm ourselves with ice than with fire.''
''No tree is so wedded to the water, and harmonizes so well with still streams.''
''We perceive that the schemers return again and again to common sense and labor. Such is the evidence of history.''
''It is Nature's own bird which lives on buds and diet-drink.''
''Now that I had heard a part of his history, he appeared singularly destitute,a captain without any vessel, only a greatcoat! and that perhaps a borrowed one! Not even a dog followed him; only his title stuck to him.''
''We should be slow to mend, my friends, as slow to require mending.''
''Thus, far from the beaten highways and the dust and din of travel, we beheld the country privately, yet freely, and at our leisure.''
''We must accept or refuse one another as we are. I could tame a hyena more easily than my Friend. He is a material which no tool of mine will work.''
''It seems as if the more youthful and impressible streams can hardly resist the numerous invitations and temptations to leave their native beds and run down their neighbors' channels.''
''"That rough tooth of the sea," Kineo, great source of arrows and of spears to the ancients, when weapons of stone were used.''
''It is one of the signs of the times. We confess that we have risen from reading this book with enlarged ideas, and grander conceptions of our duties in this world. It did expand us a little.''
''A man of fine perceptions is more truly feminine than a merely sentimental woman.''
''It is not all books that are as dull as their readers.''
''There certainly men would live forever, and laugh at death and the grave.''
''Much of our poetry has the very best manners, but no character.''
''The character of the logger's admiration is betrayed by his very mode of expressing it.... He admires the log, the carcass or corpse, more than the tree.... What right have you to celebrate the virtues of the man you murdered?''
''The forests are held cheap after the white pine has been culled out; and the explorers and hunters pray for rain only to clear the atmosphere of smoke.''
''It was a purely wild and primitive American sound, as much as the barking of a chickaree, and I could not understand a syllable of it.''
''I have seen more men than usual, lately; and, well as I was acquainted with one, I am surprised to find what vulgar fellows they are.''
''It was worth the while to lie down in a country where you could afford such great fires; that was one whole side, and the bright side, of our world.''
''Thaw with his gentle persuasion is more powerful than Thor with his hammer. The one melts, the other but breaks in pieces.''
''We are double-edged blades, and every time we whet our virtue the return stroke straps our vice. Where is the skillful swordsman who can give clean wounds, and not rip up his work with the other edge?''
''If you would avoid uncleanness, and all the sins, work earnestly, though it be at cleaning a stable. Nature is hard to be overcome, but she must be overcome.''
''I have lived some thirty-odd years on this planet, and I have yet to hear the first syllable of valuable or even earnest advice from my seniors.''
''All these sounds, the crowing of cocks, the baying of dogs, and the hum of insects at noon, are the evidence of nature's health or sound state.''
''If I devote myself to other pursuits and contemplations, I must first see, at least, that I do not do pursue them sitting upon another man's shoulders. I must get off him first, that he may pursue his contemplations too.''
''Unto a life which I call natural I would gladly follow even a will-o'-the-wisp through bogs and sloughs unimaginable, but no moon nor firefly has shown me the causeway to it.''
''We do not learn much from learned books, but from true, sincere, human books, from frank and honest biographies.''
''I have heard the voice of a hound, just before daylight, while the stars were shining, from over the woods and river, far in the horizon, when it sounded as sweet and melodious as an instrument.''
''In most books, the I, or first person, is omitted; in this it will be retained; that, in respect to egotism, is the main difference.''
''I think the fall from the farmer to the operative as great and memorable as that from the man to the farmer.''
''I know very well what Goethe meant when he said that he never had a chagrin but he made a poem out of it. I have altogether too much patience of this kind.''
''There is none who does not lie hourly in the respect he pays to false appearance.''
''Rabelais, for instance, is intolerable; one chapter is better than a volume,it may be sport to him, but it is death to us. A mere humorist, indeed, is a most unhappy man; and his readers are most unhappy also.''
''If we cannot sing of faith and triumph, we will sing our despair. We will be that kind of bird. There are day owls, and there are night owls, and each is beautiful and even musical while about its business.''
''We were soon in the smooth water of the Quakish Lake,... and we had our first, but a partial view of Ktaadn, its summit veiled in clouds, like a dark isthmus in that quarter, connecting the heavens with the earth.''
''It requires nothing less than a chivalric feeling to sustain a conversation with a lady.''
''Everything that is printed and bound in a book contains some echo at least of the best that is in literature.''
''This life we live is a strange dream, and I don't believe at all any account men give of it.''
''The murmurs of many a famous river on the other side of the globe reach even to us here, as to more distant dwellers on its banks; many a poet's stream, floating the helms and shields of heroes on its bosom.''
''They are the lovers of law and order who observe the law when the government breaks it.''
''The golden mean in ethics, as in physics, is the centre of the system and that about which all revolve, and though to a distant and plodding planet it be an uttermost extreme, yet one day, when that planet's year is completed, it will be found to be central.''
''Nay, be a Columbus to whole new continents and worlds within you, opening new channels, not of trade, but of thought.''
''No man loses ever on a lower level by magnanimity on a higher.''
''Extra vagance! it depends on how you are yarded.''
''Children, who play life, discern its true law and relations more clearly than men, who fail to live it worthily, but who think that they are wiser by experience, that is, by failure.''
''It is truly enough said that a corporation has no conscience; but a corporation of conscientious men is a corporation with a conscience.''
''The greatest gains and values are farthest from being appreciated. We easily come to doubt if they exist. We soon forget them. They are the highest reality.''
''One who knew how to appropriate the true value of this world would be the poorest man in it. The poor rich man! all he has is what he has bought.''
''I have tasted but little bread in my life. It has been mere grub and provender for the most part. Of bread that nourished the brain and the heart, scarcely any. There is absolutely none on the tables even of the rich.''
''Wherever a man goes, men will pursue him and paw him with their dirty institutions, and, if they can, constrain him to belong to their desperate odd-fellow society.''
''The true harvest of my daily life is somewhat as intangible and indescribable as the tints of morning or evening. It is a little star-dust caught, a segment of the rainbow which I have clutched.''
''Most men would feel insulted if it were proposed to employ them in throwing stones over a wall, and then in throwing them back, merely that they might earn their wages. But many are no more worthily employed now.''
''Who has not seen in imagination, when looking into the sunset sky, the gardens of the Hesperides, and the foundation of all those fables?''
''Yet, for my part, I was never unusually squeamish; I could sometimes eat a fried rat with a good relish, if it were necessary.''
''The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation.''
''No way of thinking or doing, however ancient, can be trusted without proof.''
''One would think, that a deliberate and practical denial of its authority was the only offence never contemplated by government; else, why has it not assigned its definite, its suitable and proportionate, penalty?''
''The white man's mullein soon reigned in Indian corn-fields, and sweet-scented English grasses clothed the new soil. Where, then, could the red man set his foot?''
''Carlyle is a critic who lives in London to tell this generation who have been the great men of our race.''
''Its throes will heave our exuviæ from their graves.''
''The only government that I recognizeand it matters not how few are at the head of it, or how small its armyis that power that establishes justice in the land, never that which establishes injustice.''
''The chief want, in every State that I have been into, was a high and earnest purpose in its inhabitants. This alone draws out "the great resources" of Nature, and at last taxes her beyond her resources; for man naturally dies out of her.''
''The violence of love is as much to be dreaded as that of hate.''
''Nature is an admirable schoolmistress.''
''We have heard much about the poetry of mathematics, but very little of it has yet been sung. The ancients had a juster notion of their poetic value than we.''
''In the planting of the seeds of most trees, the best gardeners do no more than follow Nature, though they may not know it.''
''The wisest definition of poetry the poet will instantly prove false by setting aside its requisitions.''
''The man who thrusts his manners upon me does as if he were to insist on introducing me to his cabinet of curiosities, when I wished to see himself.''
''It is best to avoid the beginnings of evil.''
''Tradition is a more interrupted and feebler memory.''
''If we were left solely to the wordy wit of legislators in Congress for our guidance, uncorrected by the seasonable experience and the effectual complaints of the people, America would not long retain her rank among the nations.''
''I feel as if my life had grown more outward when I can express it.''
''This phenomenon is more exhilarating to me than the luxuriance and fertility of vineyards.''
''When we want culture more than potatoes, and illumination more than sugar-plums, then the great resources of a world are taxed and drawn out, and the result, or staple production, is, not slaves, nor operatives, but men,those rare fruits called heroes, saints, poets, philosophers, and redeemers.''
''Friendship takes place between those who have an affinity for one another, and is a perfectly natural and inevitable result. No professions nor advances will avail.... It is a drama in which the parties have no part to act.''
''A perfectly healthy sentence, it is true, is extremely rare. For the most part we miss the hue and fragrance of the thought; as if we could be satisfied with the dews of the morning or evening without their colors, or the heavens without their azure.''
''What can be expressed in words can be expressed in life.''
''When I visit again some haunt of my youth, I am glad to find that nature wears so well. The landscape is indeed something real, and solid, and sincere, and I have not put my foot through it yet.''
''There is always a present and extant life, be it better or worse, which all combine to uphold.''
''I dreamed, last night, that I could vault over any height it pleased me. That was something; and I contemplated myself with a slight satisfaction in the morning for it.''
''Every man looks at his wood-pile with a kind of affection.''
''You may tell by looking at any twig of the forest, ay, at your very wood-pile, whether its winter is past or not.''
''What is the use of going right over the old track again? There is an adder in the path which your own feet have worn. You must make tracks into the Unknown.''
''Age is no better, hardly so well, qualified for an instructor as youth, for it has not profited so much as it has lost.''
''We are a race of tit-men, and soar but little higher in our intellectual flights than the columns of the daily paper.''
''The whole of the day should not be daytime; there should be one hour, if not more, which the day did not bring forth.''
''The divinity in man is the true vestal fire of the temple which is never permitted to go out, but burns as steadily and with as pure a flame on the obscure provincial altar as in Numa's temple at Rome.''
''In my afternoon walk I would fain forget all my morning occupations and my obligations to society.''
''I am never rich in money, and I am never meanly poor.''
''If within the sophisticated man there is not an unsophisticated one, then he is but one of the devil's angels.''
''For beauty, give me trees with the fur on.''
''The fruits eaten temperately need not make us ashamed of our appetites, nor interrupt the worthiest pursuits. But put an extra condiment into your dish, and it will poison you.''
''The gods are partial to no era, but steadily shines their light in the heavens, while the eye of the beholder is turned to stone. There was but the sun and the eye from the first. The ages have not added a new ray to the one, nor altered a fibre of the other.''
''Ignorance and bungling with love are better than wisdom and skill without.''
''The poet is he that hath fat enough, like bears and marmots, to suck his claws all winter. He hibernates in this world, and feeds on his own marrow.''
''Every man should stand for a force which is perfectly irresistible.''
''Surely the apple is the noblest of fruits. Let the most beautiful or the swiftest have it. That should be the "going" price of apples.''
''The front aspect of great thoughts can only be enjoyed by those who stand on the side whence they arrive.''
''The movements of the eyes express the perpetual and unconscious courtesy of the parties.''
''It is grateful to make one's way through this latest generation as through dewy grass.''
''Above all, we cannot afford not to live in the present. He is blessed over all mortals who loses no moment of the passing life in remembering the past.''
''The next time the novelist rings the bell I will not stir though the meeting-house burn down.''
''The laboring man has not leisure for a true integrity day by day.''
''Our books of science, as they improve in accuracy, are in danger of losing the freshness and vigor and readiness to appreciate the real laws of Nature, which is a marked merit in the ofttimes false theories of the ancients.''
''But they who are unconcerned about the consequences of their actions are not therefore unconcerned about their actions.''
''Make the most of your regrets; never smother your sorrow, but tend and cherish it till it come to have a separate and integral interest. To regret deeply is to live afresh.''
''The wildness and adventure that are in fishing still recommended it to me.''
''In the unbending of the arm to do the deed there is experience worth all the maxims in the world.''
''I may add that I am enjoying existence as much as ever, and regret nothing.''
''What a healthy out-of-door appetite it takes to relish the apple of life, the apple of the world, then!''
''The opening of large tracts by the ice-cutters commonly causes a pond to break up earlier; for the water, agitated by the wind, even in cold weather, wears away the surrounding ice.''
''Steady labor with the hands, which engrosses the attention also, is unquestionably the best method of removing palaver and sentimentality out of one's style, both of speaking and writing.''
''In no part of the Seventeenth Century could the French be said to have had a foothold in Canada; they held only by the fur of the wild animals which they were exterminating.''
''How earthy old people becomemouldy as the grave! Their wisdom smacks of the earth. There is no foretaste of immortality in it. They remind me of earthworms and mole crickets.''
''Who knows what sort of seventeen-year locust will next come out of the ground?''
''That we have but little faith is not sad, but that we have little faithfulness. By faithfulness faith is earned.''
''A man may esteem himself happy when that which is his food is also his medicine.''
''To be admitted to Nature's hearth costs nothing. None is excluded, but excludes himself. You have only to push aside the curtain.''
''From exertion come wisdom and purity; from sloth ignorance and sensuality.''
''One piece of good sense would be more memorable than a monument as high as the moon.''
''Books are to be distinguished by the grandeur of their topics even more than by the manner in which they are treated.''
''I left the woods for as good a reason as I went there. Perhaps it seemed to me that I had several more lives to live, and could not spare any more time for that one.''
''Shams and delusions are esteemed for soundest truths, while reality is fabulous. If men would steadily observe realities only, and not allow themselves to be deluded, life ... would be like a fairy tale and the Arabian Nights' Entertainments.''
''Morning brings back the heroic ages.''
''Penacooks and Mohawks! ubique gentium sunt?''
''I thought, as I have my living to get, and have not eaten today, that I might go a- fishing. That's the true industry for poets. It is the only trade I have learned.''
''The Iliad represents no creed nor opinion, and we read it with a rare sense of freedom and irresponsibility, as if we trod on native ground, and were autochthones of the soil.''
''While civilization has been improving our houses, it has not equally improved the men who are to inhabit them. It has created palaces, but it was not so easy to create noblemen and kings.''
''In one instance, we understood that a woman was the post- mistress, and they said that she made the best one on the road; but we suspected that the letters must be subjected to a very close scrutiny there.''
''True Friendship can afford true knowledge. It does not depend on darkness and ignorance. A want of discernment cannot be an ingredient in it.''
''It takes two to speak the truth,one to speak, and another to hear.''
''At this season I seldom had a visitor. When the snow lay deepest no wanderer ventured near my house for a week or fortnight at a time, but there I lived as snug as a meadow mouse.''
''The whole book by noble gestures and inclinations renders many words unnecessary.''
''Most think that they are above being supported by the town; but it oftener happens that they are not above supporting themselves by dishonest means, which would be more disreputable.''
''The intercourse of the sexes, I have dreamed, is incredibly beautiful, too fair to be remembered. I have had thoughts about it, but they are among the most fleeting and irrecoverable in my experience.''
''But lo! men have become the tools of their tools.''
''Many have believed that Walden reached quite through to the other side of the globe.''
''I believe that there is a subtle magnetism in Nature, which, if we unconsciously yield to it, will direct us aright. It is not indifferent to us which way we walk.''
''Each reader discovers for himself that, with respect to the simpler features of nature, succeeding poets have done little else than copy his similes.''
''Remember that you need not eat unless you are hungry.''
''Do not engage to find things as you think they are.''
''For the most part, the best man's spirit makes a fearful sprite to haunt his grave.''
''I doubt if men ever made a trade of heroism. In the days of Achilles, even, they delighted in big barns, and perchance in pressed hay, and he who possessed the most valuable team was the best fellow.''
''The most primitive places left with us are the swamps, where the spruce still grows shaggy with usnea.''
''Hold fast to your most indefinite, waking dream.''
''There is an incessant influx of novelty into the world, and yet we tolerate incredible dulness. I need only suggest what kind of sermons are still listened to in the most enlightened countries.''
''Men have a respect for scholarship and learning greatly out of proportion to the use they commonly serve.''
''As they say in geology, time never fails, there is always enough of it, so I may say, criticism never fails.''
''A few pieces of fat pine were a great treasure. It is interesting to remember how much of this food for fire is still concealed in the bowels of the earth.''
''The stars are the apexes of what triangles!''
''One can hardly imagine a more healthful employment, or one more favorable to contemplation and the observation of nature.''
''There is a patent office at the seat of government of the universe, whose managers are as much interested in the dispersion of seeds as anybody at Washington can be, and their operations are infinitely more extensive and regular.''
''He interested me because he was so quiet and solitary and so happy withal; a well of good humor and contentment which overflowed at his eyes. His mirth was without alloy.''
''What are men celebrating? They are all on a committee of arrangements, and hourly expect a speech from somebody. God is only the president of the day, and Webster is his orator.''
''If one hesitates in his path, let him not proceed. Let him respect his doubts, for doubts, too, may have some divinity in them.''
''To live a better life,this surely can be done.''
''I confess, that practically speaking, when I have learned a man's real disposition, I have no hopes of changing it for the better or worse in this state of existence.''
''Invariably our best nights were those when it rained, for then we were not troubled with mosquitoes.''
''I have made slight acquaintance also with one Mrs. Lidia Emerson, who almost persuades me to be a Christian, but I fear I as often lapse into heathenism.''
''Carlyle, to adopt his own classification, is himself the hero as literary man.''
''The heart is forever inexperienced.''
''A good book is the plectrum with which our else silent lyres are struck.''
''It becomes the moralist, too, to inquire what man might do to improve and beautify the system; what to make the stars shine more brightly, the sun more cheery and joyous, the moon more placid and content.''
''Gardening is civil and social, but it wants the vigor and freedom of the forest and the outlaw.''
''There is a difference between eating and drinking for strength and from mere gluttony.''
''I would rather sit on a pumpkin and have it all to myself than be crowded on a velvet cushion. I would rather ride on earth in an ox cart, with a free circulation, than go to heaven in the fancy car of an excursion train and breathe a malaria all the way.''
''Truth never turns to rebuke falsehood; her own straightforwardness is the severest correction.''
''The poet is he who can write some pure mythology today without the aid of posterity.''
''As for doing good, that is one of the professions which are full. Moreover, I have tried it fairly, and ... am satisfied that it does not agree with my constitution.''
''I was determined to know beans.''
''After the first blush of sin comes its indifference.''
''Nothing was ever so unfamiliar and startling to a man as his own thoughts.''
''In human intercourse the tragedy begins, not when there is misunderstanding about words, but when silence is not understood. Then there can never be an explanation.''
''The chimney is to some extent an independent structure, standing on the ground, and rising through the house to the heavens; even after the house is burned it still stands sometimes, and its importance and independence are apparent.''
''The Eastern steamboat passed us with music and a cheer, as if they were going to a ball, when they might be going toDavy's locker.''
''There are theoretical reformers at all times, and all the world over, living on anticipation.''
''It is not part of a true culture to tame tigers, any more than it is to make sheep ferocious.''
''Do not suffer your life to be taken by newspapers.''
''We seem but to linger in manhood to tell the dreams of our childhood, and they vanish out of memory ere we learn the language.''
''Slow are the beginnings of philosophy.''
''Much is published, but little printed.''
''The surface of the earth is soft and impressible by the feet of men; and so with the paths which the mind travels. How worn and dusty, then, must be the highways of the world, how deep the ruts of tradition and conformity!''
''So far as my experience goes, travelers generally exaggerate the difficulties of the way. Like most evil, the difficulty is imaginary; for what's the hurry?''
''The mass never comes up to the standard of its best member, but on the contrary degrades itself to a level with the lowest.''
''We are the subjects of an experiment which is not a little interesting to me.''
''They are the natural highways of all nations.''
''The poet will write for his peers alone. He will remember only that he saw truth and beauty from his position, and expect the time when a vision as broad shall overlook the same field as freely.''
''Our inventions are wont to be pretty toys, which distract our attention from serious things. They are but improved means to an unimproved end, an end which it was already but too easy to arrive at; as railroads lead to Boston or New York.''
''The customs of some savage nations might, perchance, be profitably imitated by us, for they at least go through the semblance of casting their slough annually; they have the idea of the thing, whether they have the reality or not.''
''Should not every apartment in which man dwells be lofty enough to create some obscurity overhead, where flickering shadows may play at evening about the rafters?''
''It was fit that I should live on rice, mainly, who loved so well the philosophy of India.''
''I live in the angle of a leaden wall, into whose composition was poured a little alloy of bell-metal. Often, in the repose of my mid-day, there reaches my ears a confused tintinnabulum from without. It is the noise of my contemporaries.''
''What were the "forests" of England to these?''
''I am not responsible for the successful working of the machinery of society.''
''While the Governor, and the Mayor, and countless officers of the Commonwealth are at large, the champions of liberty are imprisoned.''
''It was a pretty game, played on the smooth surface of the pond, a man against a loon.''
''Every morning was a cheerful invitation to make my life of equal simplicity, and I may say innocence, with Nature herself.''
''Everything may serve a lower as well as a higher use.''
''If there is not a new man, how can the new clothes be made to fit?''
''We are tempted to say that his genius was feminine, not masculine. It was such a feminineness, however, as is rarest to find in woman, though not the appreciation of it; perhaps it is not to be found at all in woman, but is only the feminine in man.''
''The finest qualities of our nature, like the bloom on fruits, can be preserved only by the most delicate handling. Yet we do not treat ourselves nor one another thus tenderly.''
''How many a man has dated a new era in his life from the reading of a book! The book exists for us, perchance, that will explain our miracles and reveal new ones. The at present unutterable things we may find somewhere uttered.''
''How little do the most wonderful inventions of modern times detain us. They insult nature. Every machine, or particular application, seems a slight outrage against universal laws.''
''I will not allow mere names to make distinctions for me, but still see men in herds for all them.''
''It does not matter much in what wars we serve, whether in the Highlands or the Lowlands. Everywhere we get soldiers' pay still.''
''It is an interesting question how far men would retain their relative rank if they were divested of their clothes.''
''Many are concerned about the monuments of the West and the East,to know who built them. For my part, I should like to know who in those days did not build them,who were above such trifling.''
''Water is a pioneer which the settler follows, taking advantage of its improvements.''
''The wisest man preaches no doctrines; he has no scheme; he sees no rafter, not even a cobweb, against the heavens. It is clear sky.''
''Surely joy is the condition of life.''
''The poet will maintain serenity in spite of all disappointments. He is expected to preserve an unconcerned and healthy outlook over the world, while he lives.''
''We were uncertain whether the water floated the land, or the land held the water in its bosom. It was such a season, in short, as that in which one of our Concord poets sailed on its stream, and sung its quiet glories.''
''We cannot but pity the boy who has never fired a gun; he is no more humane, while his education has been sadly neglected.''
''What an admirable training is science for the more active warfare of life! Indeed, the unchallenged bravery which these studies imply, is far more impressive than the trumpeted valor of the warrior.''
''Is this what all these soldiers, all this training, have been for these seventy-nine years past? Have they been trained merely to rob Mexico and carry back fugitive slaves to their masters?''
''The battle which I witnessed took place in the Presidency of Polk, five years before the passage of Webster's Fugitive-Slave Bill.''
''I believe in the forest, and in the meadow, and in the night in which the corn grows.''
''Each morning the manager of this gallery substituted some new picture, distinguished by more brilliant or harmonious coloring, for the old upon the walls.''
''Every day our garments become more assimilated to ourselves, receiving the impress of the wearer's character, until we hesitate to lay them aside without such delay and medical appliances and some such solemnity even as our bodies.''
''We would fain express our appreciation of the freedom and steady wisdom, so rare in the reformer, with which he declared that he was not born to abolish slavery, but to do right.''
''The whole body of what is now called moral or ethical truth existed in the golden age as abstract science. Or, if we prefer, we may say that the laws of Nature are the purest morality.''
''There is a slumbering subterranean fire in nature which never goes out, and which no cold can chill.''
''The very locusts and crickets of a summer day are but later or earlier glosses on the Dherma Sastra of the Hindoos, a continuation of the sacred code.''
''If it were not for the rivers (and he might go round their heads), a squirrel could here travel thus the whole breadth of the country.''
''As to conforming outwardly, and living your own life inwardly, I have not a very high opinion of that course.''
''Winter is the time for study, you know, and the colder it is the more studious we are.''
''We think that we can change our clothes only.''
''Absolutely speaking, Do unto others as you would that they should do unto you is by no means a golden rule, but the best of current silver. An honest man would have but little occasion for it. It is golden not to have any rule at all in such a case.''
''One may almost doubt if the wisest man has learned anything of absolute value by living.''
''The hero is commonly the simplest and obscurest of men.''
''Comparatively, we can excuse any offense against the heart, but not against the imagination. The imagination knowsnothing escapes its glance from out its eyryand it controls the breast.''
''I aspire to be acquainted with wiser men than this our Concord soil has produced, whose names are hardly known here.''
''Be not anxious to avoid poverty. In this way the wealth of the universe may be securely invested.''
''Moral reform is the effort to throw off sleep.''
''We seem to think that the earth must go through the ordeal of sheep-pasturage before it is habitable by man.''
''There is something servile in the habit of seeking after a law which we may obey. We may study the laws of matter at and for our convenience, but a successful life knows no law.''
''None but the like-minded can come plenipotentiary to our court.''
''A man might well pray that he may not taboo or curse any portion of nature by being buried in it.''
''I do not wish to kill nor to be killed, but I can foresee circumstances in which both these things would be by me unavoidable.''
''My Friend is not of some other race or family of men, but flesh of my flesh, bone of my bone. He is my real brother.''
''Some poems are for holidays only. They are polished and sweet, but it is the sweetness of sugar, and not such as toil gives to sour bread. The breath with which the poet utters his verse must be that by which he lives.''
''To a philosopher all news, as it is called, is gossip, and they who edit it and read it are old women over their tea.''
''If the laborer gets no more than the wages which his employer pays him, he is cheated, he cheats himself.''
''It requires more than a day's devotion to know and to possess the wealth of a day.''
''It is remarkable how many creatures live wild and free though secret in the woods, and still sustain themselves in the neighborhood of towns, suspected by hunters only.''
''Every people have gods to suit their circumstances.''
''Read the best books first, or you may not have a chance to read them at all.''
''To the sick, indeed, nature is sick, but to the well, a fountain of health.''
''He is a man, and takes his own way, or stands still in his own place.''
''It is remarkable that there is little or nothing to be remembered written on the subject of getting a living; how to make getting a living not merely honest and honorable, but altogether inviting and glorious; for if getting a living is not so, then living is not.''
''And if the civilized man's pursuits are no worthier than the savage's, if he is employed the greater part of his life in obtaining gross necessaries and comforts merely, why should he have a better dwelling than the former?''
''All nations love the same jests and tales, Jews, Christians, and Mahometans, and the same translated suffice for all.''
''It was a large farm for somebody, when cleared.''
''I have found it to be the most serious objection to coarse labors long continued, that they compelled me to eat and drink coarsely also.''
''Cowards suffer, heroes enjoy.''
''The poet who walks by moonlight is conscious of a tide in his thought which is to be referred to lunar influence.''
''Nations! What are nations? Tartars! and Huns! and Chinamen! Like insects they swarm. The historian strives in vain to make them memorable. It is for want of a man that there are so many men. It is individuals that populate the world.''
''The gross feeder is a man in the larva state; and there are whole nations in that condition, nations without fancy or imagination, whose vast abdomens betray them.''
''Why look in the dark for light?''
''I got my first clear view of Ktaadn, on this excursion, from a hill about two miles northwest of Bangor, whither I went for this purpose. After this I was ready to return to Massachusetts.''
''While I enjoy the friendship of the seasons I trust that nothing can make life a burden to me.''
''I have much to learn of the Indian, nothing of the missionary.''
''We confess that we never had much respect for that antediluvian race.''
''This house was but a slight departure from the hollow tree, which the bear still inhabits,being a hollow made with trees piled up, with a coating of bark like its original.''
''We hug the earth,how rarely we mount! Methinks we might elevate ourselves a little more. We might climb a tree, at least.''
''Money is not required to buy one necessary of the soul.''
''There are nine hundred and ninety-nine patrons of virtue to one virtuous man.''
''I had but three chairs in my house; one for solitude, two for friendship; three for society. When visitors came in larger and unexpected numbers there was but the third chair for them all, but they generally economized the room by standing up.''
''One revelation has been made to the Indian, another to the white man.''
''We have reason to be grateful for celestial phenomena, for they chiefly answer to the ideal in man.''
''Indeed, the life of cattle, like that of many men, is but a sort of locomotiveness; they move a side at a time, and man, by his machinery, is meeting the horse and the ox half-way.''
''Thus it seemed that this one hillside illustrated the principle of all the operations of Nature. The Maker of this earth but patented a leaf. What Champollion will decipher this hieroglyphic for us, that we may turn over a new leaf at last?''
''Not a flock of wild geese cackles over our town, but it to some extent unsettles the value of real estate here, and, if I were a broker, I should probably take that disturbance into account.''
''When I think of the gold-diggers and the Mormons, the slaves and the slave-holders and the flibustiers, I naturally dream of a glorious private life. No, I am not patriotic.''
''A Friend is one who incessantly pays us the compliment of expecting from us all the virtues, and who can appreciate them in us.''
''Verily, chemistry is not a splitting of hairs when you have got half a dozen raw Irishmen in the laboratory.''
''Men do not fail commonly for want of knowledge, but for want of prudence to give wisdom the preference.''
''I always see those of whom I have heard well with a slight disappointment. They are so much better than the great herd, and yet the heavens are not shivered into diamonds over their heads.''
''There is more religion in men's science than there is science in their religion.''
''With wisdom we shall learn liberality.''
''The life which men praise and regard as successful is but one kind. Why should we exaggerate any one kind at the expense of the others?''
''The coward wants resolution, which the brave man can do without. He recognizes no faith above a creed, thinking this straw by which he is moored does him good service, because his sheet anchor does not drag.''
''God is only the president of the day, and Webster is his orator.''
''Ex oriente lux may still be the motto of scholars, for the Western world has not yet derived from the East all the light which it is destined to receive thence.''
''The great poem must have the stamp of greatness as well as its essence.''
''Sometimes we are inclined to class those who are once-and-a-half-witted with the half- witted, because we appreciate only a third part of their wit.''
''Cold and hunger seem more friendly to my nature than those methods which men have adopted and advise to ward them off.''
''All that are printed and bound are not books; they do not necessarily belong to letters, but are oftener to be ranked with the other luxuries and appendages of civilized life. Base wares are palmed off under a thousand disguises.''
''We communicate like the burrows of foxes, in silence and darkness, under ground. We are undermined by faith and love.''
''In the history of the human mind, these glowing and ruddy fables precede the noonday thoughts of men, as Aurora the sun's rays. The matutine intellect of the poet, keeping in advance of the glare of philosophy, always dwells in this auroral atmosphere.''
''A great proportion of the inhabitants of the Cape are always thus abroad about their teaming on some ocean highway or other, and the history of one of their ordinary trips would cast the Argonautic expedition into the shade.''
''It is a fact that we have got to render an account for the deeds done in the body.''
''What avails it that another loves you, if he does not understand you? Such love is a curse.''
''They are so greedy and impetuous that they are frequently caught by being entangled in the line the moment it is cast.''
''Do not seek anxiously to be developed, to subject yourself to many influences to be played on; it is all dissipation.''
''If all were as it seems, and men made the elements their servants for noble ends!''
''If words were invented to conceal thought, I think that newspapers are a great improvement on a bad invention.''
''I am still a learner, not a teacher, feeding somewhat omnivorously, browsing both stalk and leaves; but I shall perhaps be enabled to speak with more precision and authority by and by,if philosophy and sentiment are not buried under a multitude of details.''
''To affect the quality of the day, that is the highest of arts. Every man is tasked to make his life, even in its details, worthy of the contemplation of his most elevated and critical hour.''
''We had not gone far before I was startled by seeing what I thought was an Indian encampment, covered with a red flag, on the bank, and exclaimed, "Camp!" to my comrades. I was slow to discover that it was a red maple changed by the frost.''
''We have not so good a right to hate any as our Friend.''
''Simplicity, simplicity, simplicity! I say, let your affairs be as two or three, and not a hundred or a thousand; instead of a million count half a dozen, and keep your accounts on your thumb-nail.''
''As every season seems best to us in its turn, so the coming in of spring is like the creation of Cosmos out of Chaos and the realization of the Golden Age.''
''Much more is adoing than Congress wots of.''
''As for me, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob are now only the subtlest imaginable essences, which would not stain the morning sky.''
''The brave man braves nothing, nor knows he of his bravery.''
''We are all of us Apollos serving some Admetus.''
''We imagined that the sun shining on their bare heads had stamped a liberal and public character on their most private thoughts.''
''I have heard no bad news.''
''But even suppose blood should flow. Is there not a sort of blood shed when the conscience is wounded? Through this wound a man's real manhood and immortality flow out, and he bleeds to an everlasting death. I see this blood flowing now.''
''The chickadee and nuthatch are more inspiring society than statesmen and philosophers, and we shall return to these last as to more vulgar companions.''
''Pray, for what do we move ever but to get rid of our furniture, our exuviæ; at last to go from this world to another newly furnished, and leave this to be burned?''
''The rich man ... is always sold to the institution which makes him rich. Absolutely speaking, the more money, the less virtue.''
''There are enough fagots and waste wood of all kinds in the forests of most of our towns to support many fires, but which at present warm none, and, some think, hinder the growth of the young wood.''
''Politics are ... but as the cigar-smoke of a man.''
''Humor, however broad and genial, takes a narrower view than enthusiasm.''
''The Indians of this neighborhood are about as familiar with the moose as we are with the ox, having associated with them for so many generations.''
''I never read a novel, they have so little real life and thought in them.''
''It is after we get home that we really go over the mountain, if ever.''
''Let us consider under what disadvantages Science has hitherto labored before we pronounce thus confidently on her progress.''
''Our taste is too delicate and particular. It says nay to the poet's work, but never yea to his hope.''
''As no one can tell what was the Roman pronunciation, each nation makes the Latin conform, for the most part, to the rules of its own language; so that with us of the vowels only A has a peculiar sound.''
''There is danger that we lose sight of what our friend is absolutely, while considering what she is to us alone.''
''Every man is entitled to come to Cattle-Show, even a transcendentalist; and for my part I am more interested in the men than in the cattle.''
''In the winter, warmth stands for all virtue.''
''There have been some nations who could do nothing but construct tombs, and these are the only traces which they have left. They are the heathen.''
''Be not simply good; be good for something.''
''Surely the writer is to address a world of laborers, and such therefore must be his own discipline.''
''It is a common accident for men camping in the woods to be killed by a falling tree.''
''The change from storm and winter to serene and mild weather, from dark and sluggish hours to bright and elastic ones, is a memorable crisis which all things proclaim. It is seemingly instantaneous at last.''
''The English did not come to America from a mere love of adventure, nor to truck with or convert the savages, nor to hold offices under the crown, as the French to a great extent did, but to live in earnest and with freedom.''
''The orator puts off his individuality, and is then most eloquent when most silent. He listens while he speaks, and is a hearer along with his audience.''
''For my part, I could easily do without the post-office. I think that there are very few important communications made through it.''
''Expect no trivial truth from me, unless I am on the witness- stand. I will come as near to lying as you can drive a coach and four.''
''In dark places and dungeons the preacher's words might perhaps strike root and grow, but not in broad daylight in any part of the world that I know.''
''To speak critically, I never received more than one or two letters in my lifeI wrote this some years agothat were worth the postage.''
''The farmers crowd to the fair today in obedience to the same ancient law,... as naturally as bees swarm and follow their queen.''
''But I would say to my fellows, once for all, As long as possible live free and uncommitted. It makes but little difference whether you are committed to a farm or the county jail.''
''The theories and speculations of men concern us more than their puny accomplishment. It is with a certain coldness and languor that we loiter about the actual and so-called practical.''
''It is not quite safe to send out a venture in this kind, unless yourself go supercargo. Where a man goes, there he is; but the slightest virtue is immovable,it is real estate, not personal; who would keep it, must consent to be bought and sold with it.''
''It is but too easy to establish another durable and harmonious routine. Immediately all parts of nature consent to it. Only make something to take the place of something, and men will behave as if it was the very thing they wanted.''
''The universe is wider than our views of it.''
''Now I thought I would observe how he spent his Sunday. While I and my companion were looking about at the trees and river, he went to sleep. Indeed, he improved every opportunity to get a nap, whatever the day.''
''English sense has toiled, but Hindoo wisdom never perspired.''
''Columbus felt the westward tendency more strongly than any before. He obeyed it, and found a New World for Castile and Leon.''
''Places where he might live and die and never hear of the United States, which make such a noise in the world,never hear of America, so called from the name of a European gentleman.''
''Hate can pardon more than love.''
''The husbandman is always a better Greek than the scholar is prepared to appreciate, and the old custom still survives, while antiquarians and scholars grow gray in commemorating it.''
''Some of my friends spoke as if I was coming to the woods on purpose to freeze myself.''
''My Friend is that one whom I can associate with my choicest thought.''
''I find it so difficult to dispose of the few facts which to me are significant, that I hesitate to burden my attention with those which are insignificant, which only a divine mind could illustrate. Such is, for the most part, the news in newspapers and conversation.''
''For if we take the ages into our account, may there not be a civilization going on among brutes as well as men?''
''Always the laws of light are the same, but the modes and degrees of seeing vary.''
''We may love and not elevate one another. The love that takes us as it finds us degrades us.''
''Every creature is better alive than dead, men and moose and pine trees, and he who understands it aright will rather preserve its life than destroy it.''
''Whether the flower looks better in the nosegay than in the meadow where it grew and we had to wet our feet to get it! Is the scholastic air any advantage?''
''The fact which the politician faces is merely that there is less honor among thieves than was supposed, and not the fact that they are thieves.''
''The Ethiopian cannot change his skin nor the leopard his spots.''
''In civilization, as in a southern latitude, man degenerates at length, and yields to the incursion of more northern tribes.''
''Deep are the foundations of sincerity. Even stone walls have their foundation below the frost.''
''Have we even so much as discovered and settled the shores? Let a man travel on foot along the coast ... and tell me if it looks like a discovered and settled country, and not rather, for the most part, like a desolate island, and No-Man's Land.''
''The inhabitants of earth behold commonly but the dark and shadowy under side of heaven's pavement; it is only when seen at a favorable angle in the horizon, morning or evening, that some faint streaks of the rich lining of the clouds are revealed.''
''Let us consider the way in which we spend our lives.''
''The stillness was intense and almost conscious, as if it were a natural Sabbath, and we fancied that the morning was the evening of a celestial day.''
''The life of a wise man is most of all extemporaneous, for he lives out of an eternity which includes all time.''
''It is not an era of repose. We have used up all our inherited freedom. If we would save our lives, we must fight for them.''
''If Carlyle does not take two steps in philosophy, are there any who take three?''
''This fond reiteration of the oldest expressions of truth by the latest posterity, content with slightly and religiously retouching the old material, is the most impressive proof of a common humanity.''
''It is said that some Western steamers can run on a heavy dew, whence we can imagine what a canoe may do.''
''We have constructed a fate, an Atropos, that never turns aside. (Let that be the name of your engine.)''
''It is remarkable that among all the preachers there are so few moral teachers. The prophets are employed in excusing the ways of men.''
''Show me a man who feels bitterly toward John Brown, and let me hear what noble verse he can repeat. He'll be as dumb as if his lips were stone.''
''I do not suppose that I have attained to obscurity, but I should be proud if no more fatal fault were found with my pages ... than was found with the Walden ice.''
''The Brahman's virtue consists in doing, not right, but arbitrary things.''
''It was a very primitive kind of harbor, where boats were drawn up amid the stumps,such a one, methought, as the Argo might have been launched in.''
''Perhaps the facts most astounding and most real are never communicated by man to man.''
''Some simple dishes recommend themselves to our imaginations as well as palates.''
''There is a chasm between knowledge and ignorance which the arches of science can never span.''
''Long enough I had heard of irrelevant things; now at length I was glad to make acquaintance with the light that dwells in rotten wood. Where is all your knowledge gone to? It evaporates completely, for it has no depth.''
''Absolutely speaking, the more money, the less virtue; for money comes between a man and his objects, and obtains them for him; and it was certainly no great virtue to obtain it.''
''The eye which can appreciate the naked and absolute beauty of a scientific truth is far more rare than that which is attracted by a moral one. Few detect the morality in the former, or the science in the latter.''
''A man sees only what concerns him.... How much more, then, it requires different intentions of the eye and of the mind to attend to different departments of knowledge! How differently the poet and the naturalist look at objects!''
''We aspire to be something more than stupid and timid chattels, pretending to read history and our Bibles, but desecrating every house and every day we breathe in.''
''Let the beautiful laws prevail. Let us not weary ourselves by resisting them.''
''Here reign the simplicity and purity of a primitive age, and a health and hope far remote from towns and cities.''
''Ere long, not only these banks, but on every hill and plain and in every hollow, the frost comes out of the ground like a dormant quadruped from its burrow, and seeks the sea with music, or migrates to other climes in clouds.''
''Can he who has discovered only some of the values of whalebone and whale oil be said to have discovered the true use of the whale?''
''Some interests have got a footing on the earth which we have not made sufficient allowance for.''
''Sincerity is a great but rare virtue, and we pardon to it much complaining, and the betrayal of many weaknesses.''
''But why go to California for a text? She is the child of New England, bred at her own school and church.''
''How many a man has dated a new era in his life from the reading of a book.''
''The cost of a thing is the amount of what I will call life which is required to be exchanged for it, immediately or in the long run.''
''The volatile truth of our words should continually betray the inadequacy of the residual statement. Their truth is instantly translated; its literal monument alone remains.''
''While making this portage I saw many splendid specimens of the great purple fringed orchis, three feet high. It is remarkable that such delicate flowers should here adorn these wilderness paths.''
''He could not have been tried by a jury of his peers, because his peers did not exist.''
''Truly, our greatest blessings are very cheap.''
''It is not worth the while to let our imperfections disturb us always. The conscience really does not, and ought not to monopolize the whole of our lives, any more than the heart or the head. It is as liable to disease as any other part.''
''My spirits infallibly rise in proportion to the outward dreariness. Give me the ocean, the desert, or the wilderness!''
''Having resumed our seats in the canoe, I felt the Indian wiping my back, which he had accidently spat upon. He said it was a sign that I was going to be married.''
''To enjoy a thing exclusively is commonly to exclude yourself from the true enjoyment of it.''
''Naught was familiar but the heavens, from under whose roof the voyageur never passes; but with their countenance, and the acquaintance we had with river and wood, we trusted to fare well under any circumstances.''
''Books, not which afford us a cowering enjoyment, but in which each thought is of unusual daring; such as an idle man cannot read, and a timid one would not be entertained by, which even make us dangerous to existing institutionsuch call I good books.''
''I heard the dog-day locust here, and afterward on the carries, a sound which I had associated only with more open, if not settled countries. The area for locusts must be small in the Maine Woods.''
''This is an approach to that universal language which men have sought in vain.''
''That is a pathetic inquiry among travelers and geographers after the site of ancient Troy. It is not near where they think it is. When a thing is decayed and gone, how indistinct must be the place it occupied!''
''The fishermen say that the "thundering of the pond" scares the fishes and prevents their biting.''
''The other side of the globe is but the home of our correspondent. Our voyaging is only great-circle sailing.''
''I have seen some whose consciences, owing undoubtedly to former indulgence, had grown to be as irritable as spoilt children, and at length gave them no peace. They did not know when to swallow their cud, and their lives of course yielded no milk.''
''A stereotyped but unconscious despair is concealed even under what are called the games and amusements of mankind.''
''In sane moments we regard only the facts, the case that is.''
''I noticed, as I had done before, that there was a lull among the mosquitoes about midnight, and that they began again in the morning. Nature is thus merciful. But apparently they need rest as well as we.''
''The man who takes the liberty to live is superior to all the laws, by virtue of his relation to the lawmaker.''
''We can never safely exceed the actual facts in our narratives. Of pure invention, such as some suppose, there is no instance. To write a true work of fiction even is only to take leisure and liberty to describe some things more exactly as they are.''
''Men cannot conceive of a state of things so fair that it cannot be realized.''
''There is no odor so bad as that which rises from goodness tainted. It is human, it is divine carrion.''
''Our truest life is when we are in dreams awake.''
''We must heap up a great pile of doing, for a small diameter of being.''
''This was the kind of man that was at home there; for, as near as I can learn, that has never been the residence, but rather the hunting-ground of the Indian.''
''How many things there are concerning which we might well deliberate whether we had better know them.''
''If you are ready to leave father and mother, and brother and sister, and wife and child and friends, and never see them again,if you have paid your debts and made your will, and settled all your affairs, and are a free man, then you are ready for a walk.''
''Of all the men who were said to be my contemporaries, it seemed to me that John Brown was the only one who had not died.''
''Books are for the most part willfully and hastily written, as parts of a system to supply a want real or imagined.''
''The very austerity of the Brahmans is tempting to the devotional soul, as a more refined and nobler luxury. Wants so easily and gracefully satisfied seem like a more refined pleasure. Their conception of creation is peaceful as a dream.''
''It was the fact that the tyrant must give place to him, or he to the tyrant, that distinguished him from all the reformers of the day that I know.''
''How sweet it would be to treat men and things, for an hour, for just what they are!''
''I like well the ring of your last maxim, "It is only the fear of death makes us reason of impossibilities." And but for fear, death itself is an impossibility.''
''Law never made men a whit more just; and, by means of their respect for it, even the well-disposed are daily made the agents of injustice.''
''For the most part, we are not where we are, but in a false position. Through an infirmity of our natures, we suppose a case, and put ourselves into it, and hence are in two cases at the same time, and it is doubly difficult to get out.''
''Behold the difference between the Oriental and the Occidental. The former has nothing to do in this world; the latter is full of activity. The one looks in the sun until his eyes are put out; the other follows him prone in his westward course.''
''There are sure to be two prescriptions diametrically opposite.''
''In some countries a hunting parson is no uncommon sight. Such a one might make a good shepherd's dog, but is far from being the Good Shepherd.''
''Probably if our lives were more conformed to nature, we should not need to defend ourselves against her heats and colds, but find her our constant nurse and friend, as do plants and quadrupeds.''
''It is good even to be a fisherman in summer and in winter.''
''It is so hard to forget what it is worse than useless to remember!''
''Almost any noble verse may be read, either as his elegy or eulogy, or be made the text of an oration on him.''
''In a pleasant spring morning all men's sins are forgiven. Such a day is a truce to vice. While such a sun holds out to burn, the vilest sinner may return.''
''I do not know but it is too much to read one newspaper a week. I have tried it recently, and for so long it seems to me that I have not dwelt in my native region. The sun, the clouds, the snow, the trees say not so much to me. You cannot serve two masters.''
''Old deeds for old people, and new deeds for new.''
''Almost all wild apples are handsome. They cannot be too gnarly and crabbed and rusty to look at. The gnarliest will have some redeeming traits even to the eye.''
''A farmer, a hunter, a soldier, a reporter, even a philosopher, may be daunted; but nothing can deter a poet, for he is actuated by pure love. Who can predict his comings and goings? His business calls him out at all hours, even when doctors sleep.''
''The light which puts out our eyes is darkness to us. Only that day dawns to which we are awake. There is more day to dawn. The sun is but a morning star.''
''Certainly, we do not need to be soothed and entertained always like children. He who resorts to the easy novel, because he is languid, does no better than if he took a nap.''
''When you get out on one of those lakes in a canoe like this, you do not forget that you are completely at the mercy of the wind, and a fickle power it is. The playful waves may at any time become too rude for you in their sport, and play right over you.''
''I have no doubt that it is a part of the destiny of the human race, in its gradual improvement, to leave off eating animals, as surely as the savage tribes have left off eating each other when they came in contact with the more civilized.''
''The truly efficient laborer will not crowd his day with work, but will saunter to his task, surrounded by a wide halo of ease and leisure, and then do but what he loves best. He is anxious only about the fruitful kernels of time.''
''As for the inlet or outlet of Walden, I have not yet discovered any but rain and snow and evaporation, though perhaps, with a thermometer and a line, such places may be found.''
''In some of those dense fir and spruce woods there is hardly room for the smoke to go up. The trees are a standing night, and every fir and spruce which you fell is a plume plucked from night's raven wing.''
''A single gentle rain makes the grass many shades greener. So our prospects brighten on the influx of better thoughts.''
''It is not enough that our life is an easy one. We must live on the stretch, retiring to our rest like soldiers on the eve of a battle, looking forward to the strenuous sortie of the morrow.''
''We are concerned now, however, about natural, not political limits.''
''There was never yet such a storm but it was Æolian music to a healthy and innocent ear.''
''The really efficient laborer will be found not to crowd his day with work, but will saunter to his task surrounded by a wide halo of ease and leisure.''
''Live free, child of the mist,and with respect to knowledge we are all children of the mist.''
''We do not suspect how much our chimneys have concealed; and now air-tight stoves have come to conceal all the rest.''
''Just so hollow and ineffectual, for the most part, is our ordinary conversation. Surface meets surface. When our life ceases to be inward and private, conversation degenerates into mere gossip.''
''When a man dies he kicks the dust.''
''Conventionalities are at length as bad as impurities. Even the facts of science may dust the mind by their dryness, unless they are in a sense effaced each morning, or rather rendered fertile by the dews of fresh and living truth.''
''The scholar is not apt to make his most familiar experience come gracefully to the aid of his expression.''
''I am very little of a traveler.''
''Speech is for the convenience of those who are hard of hearing; but there are many fine things which we cannot say if we have to shout.''
''His genius does not soar like Milton's, but is genial and familiar. It shows great tenderness and delicacy, but not the heroic sentiment. It is only a greater portion of humanity with all its weakness.''
''Indeed, the Englishman's history of New England commences only when it ceases to be New France.''
''The necessity of labor and conversation with many men and things to the scholar is rarely well remembered.''
''The poet sings how the blood flows in his veins. He performs his functions, and is so well that he needs such stimulus to sing only as plants put forth leaves and blossoms.... His song is a vital function like breathing, and an integral result like weight.''
''Every man has to learn the points of the compass again as often as he awakes, whether from sleep or any abstraction.''
''The best thing a man can do for his culture when he is rich is to endeavor to carry out those schemes which he entertained when he was poor.''
''The echo is, to some extent, an original sound, and therein is the magic and charm of it. It is not merely a repetition of what was worth repeating in the bell, but partly the voice of the wood; the same trivial words and notes sung by a wood-nymph.''
''The nonchalance and dolce-far-niente air of nature and society hint at infinite periods in the progress of mankind.''
''I quietly declare war with the State, after my fashion, though I will still make use and get advantage of her as I can, as is usual in such cases.''
''Who knows what sort of life would result if we attained to purity? If I knew so wise a man as could teach me purity I would go to seek him forthwith.''
''We love to hear some men speak, though we hear not what they say; the very air they breathe is rich and perfumed, and the sound of their voices falls on the ear like the rustling of leaves or the crackling of the fire. They stand many deep.''
''I have always endeavored to acquire strict business habits; they are indispensable to every man. If your trade is with the Celestial Empire, then some small counting house on the coast, in some Salem harbor, will be fixture enough.''
''Men must speak English who can write Sanskrit; they must speak a modern language who write, perchance, an ancient and universal one.''
''Some would find fault with the morning red, if they ever got up early enough.''
''The constant abrasion and decay of our lives makes the soil of our future growth.''
''It is plain that the reviewers, both here and abroad, do not know how to dispose of this man.''
''One of the most attractive of those ancient books that I have met with is The Laws of Menu.''
''At a tavern hereabouts the hostler greeted our horse as an old acquaintance, though he did not remember the driver.... Every man to his trade. I am not acquainted with a single horse in the world, not even the one that kicked me.''
''We 've wholly forgotten how to die. But be sure you do die nevertheless. Do your work, and finish it. If you know how to begin, you will know when to end.''
''As polishing expresses the vein in marble, and grain in wood, so music brings out what of heroic lurks anywhere. The hero is the sole patron of music.''
''None of the feathered race has yet realized my youthful conceptions of the woodland depths.''
''One of the last of the philosophers,Connecticut gave him to the world,he peddled first her wares, afterwards, as he declares, his brains. These he peddles still, prompting God and disgracing man, bearing for fruit his brain only, like the nut its kernel.''
''We are hedged about, we think, by accident and circumstance; now we creep as in a dream, and now again we run, as if there were a fate in it, and all things thwarted or assisted.''
''When an Indian is burned, his body may be broiled, it may be no more than a beefsteak. What of that? They may broil his heart, but they do not therefore broil his courage,his principles. Be of good courage! That is the main thing.''
''It is remarkable how closely the history of the apple tree is connected with that of man.''
''I wished only to be set down in Canada, and take one honest walk there as I might in Concord woods of an afternoon.''
''The heart is blind; but love is not blind. None of the gods is so discriminating.''
''What wealth is it to have such friends that we cannot think of them without elevation!''
''Goodness is the only investment that never fails.''
''In the long run men hit only what they aim at. Therefore, though they should fail immediately, they had better aim at something high.''
''These foliaceous heaps lie along the bank like the slag of a furnace, showing that Nature is "in full blast" within.''
''There are more consequences to a shipwreck than the underwriters notice.''
''We cannot see anything until we are possessed with the idea of it, take it into our heads,and then we can hardly see anything else.''
''Enthusiasm is a supernatural serenity.''
''That night was the turning-point in the season. We had gone to bed in summer, and we awoke in autumn; for summer passes into autumn in some imaginable point of time, like the turning of a leaf.''
''All expression of truth does at length take this deep ethical form.''
''Things do not change; we change.''
''Almost any mode of observation will be successful at last, for what is most wanted is method.''
''There are many skillful apprentices, but few master workmen.''
''Your scheme must be the framework of the universe; all other schemes will soon be ruins.''
''The works of the great poets have never yet been read by mankind, for only great poets can read them. They have only been read as the multitude read the stars, at most astrologically, not astronomically.''
''In our daily intercourse with men, our nobler faculties are dormant and suffered to rust. None will pay us the compliment to expect nobleness from us. Though we have gold to give, they demand only copper.''
''I have a deep sympathy with war, it so apes the gait and bearing of the soul.''
''The tree of Knowledge is a Tree of Knowledge of good and evil.''
''But the divinest poem, or the life of a great man, is the severest satire.... The greater the genius, the keener the edge of the satire.''
''It is darker in the woods, even in common nights, than most suppose.''
''I have not read far in the statutes of this Commonwealth. It is not profitable reading. They do not always say what is true; and they do not always mean what they say.''
''Of a life of luxury the fruit is luxury, whether in agriculture, or commerce, or literature, or art.''
''He who distinguishes the true savor of his food can never be a glutton; he who does not cannot be otherwise.''
''To love another ... is, to stand in a true relation to him, so that we give the best to, and receive the best from, him.''
''You must come back soon, or you will be superseded.''
''I wish to suggest that a man may be very industrious, and yet not spend his time well. There is no more fatal blunderer than he who consumes the greater part of his life getting his living.''
''The sort of morality which the priests inculcate is a very subtle policy, far finer than the politicians', and the world is very successfully ruled by them as the policemen.''
''They can do without architecture who have no olives nor wines in the cellar.''
''Depend upon it that, rude and careless as I am, I would fain practice the yoga faithfully.''
''We worship not the Graces, nor the Parcæ, but Fashion. She spins and weaves and cuts with full authority. The head monkey at Paris puts on a traveller's cap, and all the monkeys in America do the same.''
''Her undertakings are secure and never fail.''
''Let things alone; let them weigh what they will; let them soar or fall.''
''I love reform better than its modes.''
''We linger in manhood to tell the dreams of our childhood, and they are half forgotten ere we have learned the language.''
''There is considerable danger that a man will be crazy between dinner and supper; but it will not directly answer any good purpose that I know of, and it is just as easy to be sane.''
''He who eats the fruit should at least plant the seed; ay, if possible, a better seed than that whose fruit he has enjoyed.''
''If I seem to boast more than is becoming, my excuse is that I brag for humanity rather than for myself.''
''A man will not need to study history to find out what is best for his own culture.''
''No man ever stood lower in my estimation for having a patch in his clothes; yet I am sure that there is greater anxiety, commonly, to have fashionable, or at least clean and unpatched clothes, than to have a sound conscience.''
''Read not the Times. Read the Eternities.''
''Do not be too moral. You may cheat yourself out of much life so. Aim above morality.''
''My facts shall be falsehoods to the common sense. I would so state facts that they shall be significant, shall be myths or mythologic. Facts which the mind perceived, thoughts which the body thoughtwith these I deal.''
''He may travel who can subsist on the wild fruits and game of the most cultivated country.''
''Time hides no treasures; we want not its then, but its now.''
''Farmers are respectable and interesting to me in proportion as they are poor,poor farmers.''
''The wise are not so much wiser than others as respecters of their own wisdom.''
''Who knows what the human body would expand and flow out to under a more genial heaven?''
''In the mythus a superhuman intelligence uses the unconscious thoughts and dreams of men as its hieroglyphics to address men unborn.''
''Who that has heard a strain of music feared then lest he should speak extravagantly any more forever?''
''It reminded me of Prometheus Bound. Here was traveling of the old heroic kind over the unaltered face of nature.''
''Do not entertain doubts if they are not agreeable to you.''
''Art may varnish and gild, but it can do no more.''
''To the innocent there are neither cherubim nor angels.''
''The higher the mountain on which you stand, the less change in the prospect from year to year, from age to age. Above a certain height there is no change.''
''There are two classes of men called poets. The one cultivates life, the other art,... one satisfies hunger, the other gratifies the palate.''
''I have found all things thus far, persons and inanimate matter, elements and seasons, strangely adapted to my resources.''
''Few, if any, creatures are equally active all night.''
''It is no better, at least, than to assist at a slaughter-house.''
''For the most part we stupidly confound one man with another. The dull distinguish only races or nations, or at most classes, but the wise man, individuals.''
''As our domestic fowls are said to have their original in the wild pheasant of India, so our domestic thoughts have their prototypes in the thoughts of her philosophers.''
''The poor President, what with preserving his popularity and doing his duty, is completely bewildered.''
''In a thousand apparently humble ways men busy themselves to make some right take the place of some wrong,if it is only to make a better paste blacking,and they are themselves so much the better morally for it.''
''I have found it a singular luxury to talk across the pond to a companion on the opposite side.''
''They never consulted with books, and know and can tell much less than they have done. The things which they practice are said not yet to be known.''
''The scholar requires hard and serious labor to give an impetus to his thought. He will learn to grasp the pen firmly so, and wield it gracefully and effectively, as an axe or a sword.''
''A man of rare common sense and directness of speech, as of action; a transcendentalist above all, a man of ideas and principles,Mthat was what distinguished him.''
''I would remind my countrymen that they are to be men first, and Americans only at a late and convenient hour.''
''For my desert, I helped myself to a large slice of the Chesuncook woods, and took a hearty draught of its waters with all my senses.''
''There has always been the same amount of light in the world. The new and missing stars, the comets and eclipses, do not affect the general illumination, for only our glasses appreciate them.''
''Let nothing come between you and the light. Respect men and brothers only.''
''He is, for the most part, less to be relied on, and more disposed to sulks and whims.''
''We make needless ado about capital punishment,taking lives, when there is no life to take.''
''Many men walk by day; few walk by night.''
''Most men I do not meet at all, for they seem not to have time; they are busy about their beans.''
''The ferryman had told us that all the best Indians were gone except Polis, who was one of the aristocracy.''
''But the place which you have selected for your camp, though never so rough and grim, begins at once to have its attractions, and becomes a very centre of civilization to you: "Home is home, be it never so homely."''
''Can there be any greater reproach than an idle learning? Learn to split wood, at least.''
''I cannot tell how many times we had to walk on account of falls or rapids. We were expecting all the while that the river would take a final leap and get to smooth water, but there was no improvement this forenoon.''
''If a plant cannot live according to its nature, it dies; and so a man.''
''Where there is not discernment, the behavior even of the purest soul may in effect amount to coarseness.''
''This Indian camp was a slight, patched-up affair, which had stood there several weeks, built shed-fashion, open to the fire on the west.... Altogether it was about as savage a sight as was ever witnessed, and I was carried back at once three hundred years.''
''As for men, they will hardly fail one anywhere. I had more visitors while I lived in the woods than at any other period of my life; I mean that I had some.''
''A more simple and natural man it would be hard to find. Vice and disease, which cast such a sombre moral hue over the world, seemed to have hardly any existence for him.''
''The imagination, give it the least license, dives deeper and soars higher than Nature goes.''
''Surely the fates are forever kind, though Nature's laws are more immutable than any despot's, yet to man's daily life they rarely seem rigid, but permit him to relax with license in summer weather. He is not harshly reminded of the things he may not do.''
''We should never stand upon ceremony with sincerity. We should never cheat and insult and banish one another by our meanness, if there were present the kernel of worth and friendliness. We should not meet thus in haste.''
''This house was designed and constructed with the freedom of stroke of a forester's axe, without other compass and square than Nature uses.''
''Each structure and institution here was so primitive that you could at once refer it to its source; but our buildings commonly suggest neither their origin nor their purpose.''
''Those who, while they disapprove of the character and measures of a government, yield to it their allegiance and support are undoubtedly its most conscientious supporters, and so frequently the most serious obstacles to reform.''
''Nature puts no question and answers none which we mortals ask. She has long ago taken her resolution.''
''Its virtues, not its sins, are as scarlet.''
''He utters substantial English thoughts in plainest English dialects.... Indeed, for fluency and skill in the use of the English tongue, he is a master unrivaled. His felicity and power of expression surpass even his special merits as historian and critic.''
''Who shall describe the inexpressable tenderness and immortal life of the grim forest, where Nature, though it be midwinter, is ever in her spring, where the moss-grown and decaying trees are not old, but seem to enjoy a perpetual youth.''
''He who cannot exaggerate is not qualified to utter truth.''
''The intellect is a cleaver; it discerns and rifts its way into the secrets of things.''
''Late in the afternoon, we rode through Brewster, so named after Elder Brewster, for fear he would be forgotten else. Who has not heard of Elder Brewster? Who knows who he was?''
''The fact is, mental philosophy is very like Poverty, which, you know, begins at home; and indeed, when it goes abroad, it is poverty itself.''
''This world is but canvas to our imaginations.''
''Though you have nothing to do but see the country, there's rarely any time to spare, hardly enough to examine a plant, before the night or drowsiness is upon you.''
''Look not to legislatures and churches for your guidance, nor to any soulless incorporated bodies, but to inspirited or inspired ones.''
''Cultivate poverty like a garden herb, like sage.''
''So easy is it, though many housekeepers doubt it, to establish new and better customs in the place of the old.''
''It was the unfailing and characteristic sound of those lakes.''
''No people ever lived by cursing their fathers, however great a curse their fathers might have been to them.''
''I did not know that mankind was suffering for want of gold.''
''Nowadays almost all man's improvements, so called, as the building of houses and the cutting down of the forest and of all large trees, simply deform the landscape, and make it more and more tame and cheap.''
''I do not wish to be any more busy with my hands than is necessary.''
''All men are really most attracted by the beauty of plain speech, and they even write in a florid style in imitation of this. They prefer to be misunderstood rather than to come short of its exuberance.''
''It is enough if Homer but say the sun sets. He is as serene as nature, and we can hardly detect the enthusiasm of the bard. It is as if nature spoke.''
''I am not sure but all that would tempt me to teach the Indian my religion would be his promise to teach me his.''
''The Mississippi, the Ganges, and the Nile,... the Rocky Mountains, the Himmaleh, and Mountains of the Moon, have a kind of personal importance in the annals of the world.''
''The civilized man is a more experienced and wiser savage.''
''The man who does not betake himself at once and desperately to sawing is called a loafer, though he may be knocking at the doors of heaven all the while.''
''It is for want of a man that there are so many men. It is individuals that populate the world.''
''A field of water betrays the spirit that is in the air. It is continually receiving new life and motion from above. It is intermediate in its nature between land and sky.''
''The current of our thoughts made as sudden bends as the river, which was continually opening new prospects to the east or south, but we are aware that rivers flow most rapidly and shallowest at these points.''
''I do not know what right I have to so much happiness, but rather hold it in reserve till the time of my desert.''
''I have not earned what I have already enjoyed.''
''In the religion of all nations a purity is hinted at, which, I fear, men never attain to.''
''They who aspire to love worthily, subject themselves to an ordeal more rigid than any other.''
''Take Time by the forelock. It is also the safest part to take a serpent by.''
''I have been breaking silence these twenty-three years and have hardly made a rent in it.''
''There is no history of how bad became better.''
''It has come to this, that the friends of liberty, the friends of the slave, have shuddered when they have understood that his fate was left to the legal tribunals of the country to be decided. Free men have no faith that justice will be awarded in such a case.''
''I shall not be forward to think him mistaken in his method who quickest succeeds to liberate the slave. I speak for the slave when I say that I prefer the philanthropy of Captain Brown to that philanthropy which neither shoots me nor liberates me.''
''The light which puts out our eyes is darkness to us. Only that day dawns to which we are awake. There is more day to dawn. The sun is but a morning star.''
''I never chanced to see its kind in any market; it would be the cynosure of all eyes there.''
''Undoubtedly, in the most brilliant successes, the first rank is always sacrificed.''
''The child should have the advantage of ignorance as well as of knowledge, and is fortunate if he gets his share of neglect and exposure.''
''One generation abandons the enterprises of another like stranded vessels.''
''Nature is not made after such a fashion as we would have her. We piously exaggerate her wonders, as the scenery around our home.''
''Though once there were more whales cast up here, I think that it was never more wild than now.''
''There is in my nature, methinks, a singular yearning toward all wildness.''
''Instead of noblemen, let us have noble villages of men.''
''Every path but your own is the path of fate. Keep on your own track, then.''
''A familiar name cannot make a man less strange to me. It may be given to a savage who retains in secret his own wild title earned in the woods. We have a wild savage in us, and a savage name is perchance somewhere recorded as ours.''
''It is not worth the while to live by rich cookery.''
''If we dealt only with the false and dishonest, we should at last forget how to speak truth.''
''We certainly leave the handsomest paint and clapboards behind in the woods, when we strip off the bark and poison ourselves with white-lead in the towns. We get but half the spoils of the forest.''
''A man cannot wheedle nor overawe his Genius. It requires to be conciliated by nobler conduct than the world demands or can appreciate.''
''Love your life, poor as it is. You may perhaps have some pleasant, thrilling, glorious hours, even in a poor-house.''
''A man's whole life is taxed for the least thing well done. It is its net result.''
''I now first began to inhabit my house, I may say, when I began to use it for warmth as well as shelter.''
''Solitude is not measured by the miles of space that intervene between a man and his fellows. The really diligent student in one of the crowded hives of Cambridge College is as solitary as a dervis in the desert.''
''When the soldier is hit by a cannon-ball, rags are as becoming as purple.''
''He makes his voyage too late, perhaps, by a true water clock who delays too long.''
''The inhabitants of Canada appeared to be suffering between two fires,the soldiery and the priesthood.''
''The purity men love is like the mists which envelop the earth, and not like the azure ether beyond.''
''Is there any such thing as wisdom not applied to life?''
''Let your condiments be in the condition of your senses.''
''It is a ridiculous demand which England and America make, that you shall speak so that they can understand you. Neither men nor toadstools grow so.''
''There are not so many fishes in these rivers as in the Concord.''
''There have been many stories told about the bottom, or rather no bottom, of this pond, which certainly had no foundation for themselves. It is remarkable how long men will believe in the bottomlessness of a pond without taking the trouble to sound it.''
''The gold-digger is the enemy of the honest laborer, whatever checks and compensations there may be. It is not enough to tell me that you worked hard to get your gold. So does the Devil work hard. The way of transgressors may be hard in many respects.''
''It is too late to be studying Hebrew; it is more important to understand even the slang of to-day.''
''The philosopher is in advance of his age even in the outward form of his life. He is not fed, sheltered, clothed, warmed, like his contemporaries. How can a man be a philosopher and not maintain his vital heat by better methods than other men?''
''What sort of space is that which separates a man from his fellows and makes him solitary?''
''We never conceive the greatness of our fates.''
''It is not easy to make our lives respectable by any course of activity. We must repeatedly withdraw into our shells of thought, like the tortoise, somewhat helplessly; yet there is more than philosophy in that.''
''The world is a cow that is hard to milk,life does not come so easy,and oh, how thinly it is watered ere we get it!''
''A man must find his occasions in himself, it is true. The natural day is very calm, and will hardly reprove his indolence.''
''We could not well camp higher, for want of fuel; and the trees here seemed so evergreen and sappy, that we almost doubted if they would acknowledge the influence of fire; but fire prevailed at last, and blazed here, too, like a good citizen of the world.''
''Nature is mythical and mystical always, and works with the license and extravagance of genius. She has her luxurious and florid style as well as art.''
''These are not the artificial forests of an English king,a royal preserve merely. Here prevail no forest laws but those of nature. The aborigines have never been dispossessed, nor nature disforested.''
''Poetry is the mysticism of mankind.''
''All the events which make the annals of the nations are but the shadows of our private experiences.''
''At this rate, we shall all be obliged to let our beards grow at least, if only to hide the nakedness of the land and make a sylvan appearance.''
''I narrowly watched his motions, and listened attentively to his observations, for we had employed an Indian mainly that I might have an opportunity to study his ways.''
''There is an orientalism in the most restless pioneer, and the farthest west is but the farthest east.''
''Are not all finite beings better pleased with motions relative than absolute?''
''What I see is mine.''
''What is the use of a house if you have n't got a tolerable planet to put it on?if you cannot tolerate the planet it is on?''
''The West of which I speak is but another name for the Wild; and what I have been preparing to say is, that in Wildness is the preservation of the World.''
''But the ocean was the grand fact there, which made us forget both bayberries and men.''
''It was all smoke, and no salt, Attic or other.''
''Man is an animal who more than any other can adapt himself to all climates and circumstances.''
''It was the pine alone, chiefly the white pine, that had tempted any but the hunter to precede us on this route.''
''The earth is all alive and covered with papillæ.''
''Write while the heat is in you.... The writer who postpones the recording of his thoughts uses an iron which has cooled to burn a hole with. He cannot inflame the minds of his audience.''
''I would stand upon facts.''
''Give me the poverty that enjoys true wealth.''
''I should be glad if all the meadows on the earth were left in a wild state, if that were the consequence of men's beginning to redeem themselves.''
''What have I to do with plows? I cut another furrow than you see.''
''There is one consolation in being sick; and that is the possibility that you may recover to a better state than you were ever in before.''
''Morning work! By the blushes of Aurora and the music of Memnon, what should be man's morning work in this world?''
''The world is a strange place for a playhouse to stand within it.''
''The kind uncles and aunts of the race are more esteemed than its true spiritual fathers and mothers.''
''What is called politics is comparatively something so superficial and inhuman, that practically I have never fairly recognized that it concerns me at all.''
''This generation has come into the world fatally late for some enterprises. Go where we will on the surface of things, men have been there before us.... But the lives of men, though more extended laterally in their range, are still as shallow as ever.''
''A man may travel fast enough and earn his living on the road.''
''I do not wish, it happens, to be associated with Massachusetts, either in holding slaves or in conquering Mexico. I am a little better than herself in these respects.''
''Man needs to know but little more than a lobster in order to catch him in his traps.''
''The sun is but a morning star.''
''What would we not give for some great poem to read now, which would be in harmony with the scenery,for if men read aright, methinks they would never read anything but poems. No history nor philosophy can supply their place.''
''The slight reproach to which the virtue of patriotism is commonly liable, the noble are most likely to incur.''
''I should say that he was an old-fashioned man in his respect for the Constitution, and his faith in the permanence of this Union. Slavery he deemed to be wholly opposed to these, and he was its determined foe.''
''We can conceive of nothing more fair than something which we have experienced.''
''How they got a cat up there I do not know, for they are as shy as my aunt about entering a canoe. I wondered that she did not run up a tree on the way; but perhaps she was bewildered by the very crowd of opportunities.''
''A sufficiently great and generous trust could never be abused.''
''Faith never makes a confession.''
''The body can feed the body only.''
''Easily, with a few convulsive quirks, they give up their watery ghosts, like a mortal translated before his time to the thin air of heaven.''
''As for the dispute about solitude and society, any comparison is impertinent. It is an idling down on the plane at the base of a mountain, instead of climbing steadily to its top.''
''On the whole, Chaucer impresses us as greater than his reputation, and not a little like Homer and Shakespeare, for he would have held up his head in their company.''
''What should we think of the shepherd's life if his flocks always wandered to higher pastures than his thoughts?''
''The first sparrow of spring! The year beginning with younger hope than ever!... What at such a time are histories, chronologies, traditions, and all written revelations? The brooks sing carols and glees to the spring.''
''I only desire sincere relations with the worthiest of my acquaintance, that they may give me an opportunity once in a year to speak the truth.''
''Generally speaking, a howling wilderness does not howl: it is the imagination of the traveler that does the howling.''
''In this country, the village should in some respects take the place of the nobleman of Europe. It should be the patron of the fine arts. It is rich enough. It wants only the magnanimity and refinement.''
''The largest pond is as sensitive to atmospheric changes as the globule of mercury in its tube.''
''But what is quackery? It is commonly an attempt to cure the diseases of a man by addressing his body alone. There is need of a physician who shall minister to both soul and body at once, that is, to man. Now he falls between two stools.''
''It makes no odds where a man goes or stays, if he is only about his business.''
''Those things which now most engage the attention of men, as politics and the daily routine, are, it is true, vital functions of human society, but should be unconsciously performed, like the corresponding functions of the physical body.''
''The State never intentionally confronts a man's sense, intellectual or moral, but only his body, his senses. It is not armed with superior wit or honesty, but with superior physical strength.''
''The language of excitement is at best picturesque merely. You must be calm before you can utter oracles.''
''But, commonly, men are as much afraid of love as of hate.''
''Enjoy the land, but own it not. Through want of enterprise and faith men are where they are, buying and selling, and spending their lives like serfs.''
''He who is only a traveler learns things at second-hand and by the halves, and is poor authority. We are most interested when science reports what those men already know practically or instinctively, for that alone is a true humanity, or account of human experience.''
''When the chopper would praise a pine, he will commonly tell you that the one he cut was so big that a yoke of oxen stood on its stump; as if that were what the pine had grown for, to become the footstool of oxen.''
''Marching is when the pulse of the hero beats in unison with the pulse of Nature, and he steps to the measure of the universe; then there is true courage and invincible strength.''
''The evergreen woods had a decidedly sweet and bracing fragrance; the air was a sort of diet-drink, and we walked on buoyantly in Indian file, stretching our legs.''
''The autumnal change of our woods has not yet made a deep impression on our own literature yet. October has hardly tinged our poetry.''
''With respect to wit, I learned that there was not much difference between the half and the whole.''
''I think that Nature meant kindly when she made our brothers few. However, my voice is still for peace.''
''The Great South Beach of Long Island,... though wild and desolate, as it wants the bold bank,... possesses but half the grandeur of Cape Cod in my eyes, nor is the imagination contented with its southern aspect.''
''Give me a sentence which no intelligence can understand. There must be a kind of life and palpitation to it, and under its words a kind of blood must circulate forever.''
''We are not what we are, nor do we treat or esteem each other for such, but for what we are capable of being.''
''I found that they knew but little of the history of their race, and could be entertained by stories about their ancestors as readily as any way.''
''Many old people receive pensions for no other reason, it seems to me, but as a compensation for having lived a long time ago.''
''The true finish is the work of time, and the use to which a thing is put. The elements are still polishing the pyramids.''
''You can much sooner dry you by such a fire as you can make in the woods than in anybody's kitchen, the fireplace is so much larger, and wood so much more abundant.''
''It was a remarkable kind of light to steer for,daylight seen through a vista in the forest,but visible as far as an ordinary beacon at night.''
''On the whole, we were glad of the storm, which would show us the ocean in its angriest mood.''
''It behooves every man to see that his influence is on the side of justice, and let the courts make their own characters.''
''Is it not singular that, while the religious world is gradually picking to pieces its old testaments, here are some coming slowly after, on the seashore, picking up the durable relics of perhaps older books, and putting them together again?''
''But the impressions which the morning makes vanish with its dews, and not even the most "persevering mortal" can preserve the memory of its freshness to midday.''
''Say what you have to say, not what you ought. Any truth is better than make-believe.''
''When I would recreate myself, I seek the darkest wood, the thickest and most interminable and, to the citizen, most dismal, swamp. I enter a swamp as a sacred place, a sanctum sanctorum. There is the strength, the marrow, of Nature.''
''No man who acts from a sense of duty ever puts the lesser duty above the greater. No man has the desire and the ability to work on high things, but he has also the ability to build himself a high staging.''
''I should like not to exchange any of my life for money.''
''There is something strangely modern about him. He is very easily turned into English.''
''We loiter in winter while it is already spring.''
''How could youths better learn to live than by at once trying the experiment of living?''
''In wildness is the preservation of the world.''
''Franklin,Washington,they were left off without dying; they were merely missing one day.''
''If you would convince a man that he does wrong, do right. But do not care to convince him. Men will believe what they see. Let them see.''
''I did not wish to take a cabin passage, but rather to go before the mast and on the deck of the world, for there I could best see the moonlight amid the mountains. I do not wish to go below now.''
''He was even too well-bred to be thoroughly bred.''
''If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put the foundations under them.''
''The few who can talk like a book, they only get reported commonly. But this writer reports a new lieferung.''
''One is sick at heart of this pagoda worship. It is like the beating of gongs in a Hindoo subterranean temple.''
''Though the hen should sit all day, she could lay only one egg, and, besides, would not have picked up materials for another.''
''A true Friendship is as wise as it is tender. The parties to it yield implicitly to the guidance of their love, and know no other law nor kindness.''
''We are a nation of politicians, concerned about the outmost defenses only of freedom. It is our children's children who may perchance be really free.''
''Some show their kindness to the poor by employing them in their kitchens. Would they not be kinder if they employed themselves there?''
''For one that comes with a pencil to sketch or sing, a thousand come with an axe or rifle. What a coarse and imperfect use Indians and hunters make of nature! No wonder that their race is so soon exterminated.''
''The only free road, the Underground Railroad, is owned and managed by the Vigilant Committee. They have tunneled under the whole breadth of the land.''
''Some, it seems to me, elect their rulers for their crookedness. But I think that a straight stick makes the best cane, and an upright man the best ruler.''
''All great enterprises are self-supporting.''
''Linnæus, setting out for Lapland, surveys his "comb" and "spare shirt," "leathern breeches" and "gauze cap to keep off gnats," with as much complacency as Bonaparte a park of artillery for the Russian campaign. The quiet bravery of the man is admirable.''
''I have heard a good many pretend that they are going to die; or that they have died, for aught that I know. Nonsense! I'll defy them to do it. They have n't got life enough in them.... Only half a dozen or so have died since the world began.''
''The sport of digging the bait is nearly equal to that of catching the fish, when one's appetite is not too keen.''
''Of all ebriosity, who does not prefer to be intoxicated by the air he breathes?''
''Since you are my readers, and I have not been much of a traveler, I will not talk about people a thousand miles off, but come as near home as I can. As the time is short, I will leave out all the flattery, and retain all the criticism.''
''In some pictures of Provincetown the persons of the inhabitants are not drawn below the ankles, so much being supposed to be buried in the sand.''
''Whatever is, and is not ashamed to be, is good.''
''Knowledge is to be acquired only by a corresponding experience. How can we know what we are told merely? Each man can interpret another's experience only by his own.''
''It may be worth the while to state that he is not a Reformer in our sense of the term.''
''We think it is the richest prose style we know of.''
''Thus we steadily worship Mammon, both school and state and church, and on the seventh day curse God with a tintamar from one end of the Union to the other.''
''Men are as innocent as the morning to the unsuspicious.''
''It would seem as if the very language of our parlors would lose all its nerve and degenerate into palaver wholly, our lives pass at such remoteness from its symbols, and its metaphors and tropes are necessarily so far fetched.''
''Follow your genius closely enough, and it will not fail to show you a fresh prospect every hour.''
''There is such a thing as caste, even in the West; but it is comparatively faint; it is conservatism here. It says, forsake not your calling, outrage no institution, use no violence, rend no bonds; the State is thy parent. Its virtue or manhood is wholly filial.''
''I had three chairs in my house; one for solitude, two for friendship, three for society.''
''He had a whole heaven and horizon to himself, and the sun seemed to be journeying over his clearing only the livelong day.''
''Ancient history has an air of antiquity. It should be more modern. It is written as if the specator should be thinking of the backside of the picture on the wall, or as if the author expected that the dead would be his readers, and wished to detail to them their own experience.''
''How can any man be weak who dares to be at all?''
''Politics is but a narrow field.''
''Such pure and genuine and childlike love of Nature is hardly to be found in any poet.''
''The canoe and yellow birch, beech, maple, and elm are Saxon and Norman, but the spruce and fir, and pines generally, are Indian.''
''Even Nature is observed to have her playful moods or aspects, of which man sometimes seems to be the sport.''
''We have need to be earth-born as well as heaven-born, gegeneis, as was said of the Titans of old, or in a better sense than they.''
''What if all ponds were shallow? Would it not react on the minds of men? I am thankful that this pond was made deep and pure for a symbol. While men believe in the infinite some ponds will be thought to be bottomless.''
''It is true, there are the innocent pleasures of country life, and it is sometimes pleasant to make the earth yield her increase, and gather the fruits in their season; but the heroic spirit will not fail to dream of remoter retirements and more rugged paths. It will have its garden-plots and its parterres elsewhere than on the earth, and gather nuts and berries by the way for its subsistence, or orchard fruits with such heedlessness as berries.''
''His books are solid and workmanlike, as all that England does; and they are graceful and readable also.''
''The night is equally indebted to the clarion of the cock, with wakeful hope, from the very setting of the sun, prematurely ushering in the dawn.''
''For ourselves, we are too young for experience. Who is old enough?''
''Do what you love. Know your own bone; gnaw at it, bury it, unearth it, and gnaw it still.''
''We have got to know what both life and death are, before we can begin to live after our own fashion. Let us be learning our a-b- c's as soon as possible.''
''If a man were to place himself in an attitude to bear manfully the greatest evil that can be inflicted on him, he would find suddenly that there was no such evil to bear; his brave back would go a-begging.''
''The soft engravings which adorn the annuals give no idea of a stream in such a wilderness as this.''
''From time to time we met a priest in the streets, for they are distinguished by their dress, like the civil police. Like clergymen generally, with or without the gown, they made on us the impression of effeminacy.''
''Remember that the smallest seed of faith is of more worth than the largest fruit of happiness.''
''Objects of charity are not guests.''
''He has more to impart than to receive from his generation. He is another such a strong and finished workman in his craft as Samuel Johnson was, and, like him, makes the literary class respectable.''
''We select granite for the underpinning of our houses and barns; we build fences of stone; but we do not ourselves rest on an underpinning of granitic truth, the lowest primitive rock. Our sills are rotten.''
''A name pronounced is the recognition of the individual to whom it belongs. He who can pronounce my name aright, he can call me, and is entitled to my love and service.''
''I have found that hollow, which even I had relied on for solid.''
''Since all things are good, men fail at last to distinguish which is the bane and which the antidote.''
''Though I do not believe that a plant will spring up where no seed has been, I have great faith in a seed,a, to me, equally mysterious origin for it.''
''You need not rest your reputation on the dinners you give.''
''The universe is not rough-hewn, but perfect in its details. Nature will bear the closest inspection; she invites us to lay our eye level with the smallest leaf, and take an insect view of its plain. She has no interstices; every part is full of life.''
''The startings and arrivals of the cars are now the epochs in the village day.''
''I was awakened at midnight by some heavy, low-flying bird, probably a loon, flapping by close over my head, along the shore. So, turning the other side of my half-clad body to the fire, I sought slumber again.''
''Only what is thought, said, or done at a certain rare coincidence is good.''
''I love to see that Nature is so rife with life that myriads can be afforded to be sacrificed and suffered to prey on one another; that tender organizations can be so serenely squashed out of existence like pulp.''
''The language of Friendship is not words, but meanings. It is an intelligence above language.''
''It is wonderful how well watered this country is.... Generally, you may go any direction in a canoe, by making frequent but not very long portages.''
''I am no more lonely than the loon in the pond that laughs so loud, or than Walden Pond itself. What company has that lonely lake, I pray?''
''The air was so elastic and crystalline that it had the same effect on the landscape that a glass has on a picture, to give it an ideal remoteness and perfection.''
''I am pleased to think of Channing as an inhabitant of the gray town. Seven cities contended for Homer dead. Tell him to remain at least long enough to establish Concord's right and interest in him.''
''It takes place ... always without permanent form, though ancient and familiar as the sun and moon, and as sure to come again.''
''I am accustomed to think very long of going anywhere,am slow to move. I hope to hear a response of the oracle first.''
''If the alternative is to keep all just men in prison, or give up war and slavery, the State will not hesitate which to choose.''
''The expressions of the poet cannot be analyzed; his sentence is one word, whose syllables are words. There are indeed no words quite worthy to be set to his music. But what matter if we do not hear the words always, if we hear the music?''
''I never found the companion that was so companionable as solitude.''
''I would fain keep sober always; and there are infinite degrees of drunkenness.''
''In all perception of the truth there is a divine ecstasy, an inexpressible delirium of joy, as when a youth embraces his betrothed virgin. The ultimate delights of a true marriage are one with this.''
''It is impossible to say all that we think, even to our truest Friend. We may bid him farewell forever sooner than complain, for our complaint is too well grounded to be uttered.''
''Only he who has had the good fortune to read them in the nick of time, in the most perceptive and recipient season of life, can give any adequate account of them.''
''It is not their bones or hide or tallow that I love most. It is the living spirit of the tree, not its spirit of turpentine, with which I sympathize, and which heals my cuts. It is as immortal as I am, and perchance will go to as high a heaven, there to tower above me still.''
''Many a poor sore-eyed student that I have heard of would grow faster, both intellectually and physically, if, instead of sitting up so very late, he honestly slumbered a fool's allowance.''
''The researcher is more memorable than the researched.''
''The past is only so heroic as we see it. It is the canvas on which our idea of heroism is painted, and so, in one sense, the dim prospectus of our future field.''
''We are paid for our suspicions by finding what we suspected.''
''The young pines springing up in the corn-fields from year to year are to me a refreshing fact.''
''Our village life would stagnate if it were not for the unexplored forests and meadows which surround it.''
''The press is, almost without exception, corrupt.''
''Give me a wildness whose glance no civilization can endure,as if we lived on the marrow of koodoos devoured raw.''
''The inhabitants of the Cape generally do not complain of their "soil," but will tell you that it is good enough for them to dry their fish on.''
''Before printing was discovered, a century was equal to a thousand years.''
''There are various, nay, incredible faiths; why should we be alarmed at any of them? What man believes, God believes.''
''It is life near the bone where it is sweetest. You are defended from being a trifler.''
''In the meanest are all the materials of manhood, only they are not rightly disposed.''
''The finest workers in stone are not copper or steel tools, but the gentle touches of air and water working at their leisure with a liberal allowance of time.''
''If you would be chaste, you must be temperate.''
''Commerce is really as interesting as nature.''
''The Indian's intercourse with Nature is at least such as admits of the greatest independence of each.''
''It was not the hero I admired, but the reflection from his epaulet or helmet. It is nothing (for us) permanently inherent in another, but his attitude or relation to what we prize, that we admire.''
''One of the most attractive things about the flowers is their beautiful reserve.''
''I delight to come to my bearings,... not to live in this restless, nervous, bustling, trivial Nineteenth Century, but stand or sit thoughtfully while it goes by.''
''Nature has no human inhabitant who appreciates her.''
''What does education often do? It makes a straight-cut ditch of a free, meandering brook.''
''The dinner even is only the parable of a dinner, commonly.''
''It is not enough that we are truthful; we must cherish and carry out high purposes to be truthful about.''
''In the student sensuality is a sluggish habit of mind.''
''We cannot well do without our sins; they are the highway of our virtue.''
''If men will believe it, sua si bona norint, there are no more quiet Tempes, nor more poetic and Arcadian lives, than may be lived in these New England dwellings. We thought that the employment of their inhabitants by day would be to tend the flowers and herds, and at night, like the shepherds of old, to cluster and give names to the stars from the river banks.''
''Mosquitoes, black flies, etc., pursued us in mid-channel, and we were glad sometimes to get into violent rapids, for then we escaped them.''
''I think that we may safely trust a good deal more than we do. We may waive just so much care of ourselves as we honestly bestow elsewhere. Nature is as well adapted to our weakness as to our strength.''
''Do what nobody else can do for you. Omit to do anything else.''
''I read a part of the story of my excursion to Ktaadn to quite a large audience of men and boys, the other night, whom it interested. It contains many facts and some poetry.''
''I desire to speak somewhere without bounds; like a man in a waking moment, to men in their waking moments; for I am convinced that I cannot exaggerate enough even to lay the foundation of a true expression.''
''Only lovers know the value and magnanimity of truth.''
''Is the babe young? When I behold it, it seems more venerable than the oldest man.''
''It is pitiful when a man bears a name for convenience merely, who has earned neither name nor fame.''
''We must love our friend so much that she shall be associated with our purest and holiest thoughts alone.''
''Don't spend your time in drilling soldiers, who may turn out hirelings after all, but give to undrilled peasantry a country to fight for.''
''Where the citizen uses a mere sliver or board, the pioneer uses the whole trunk of a tree.''
''Tell me of the height of the mountains of the moon, or of the diameter of space, and I may believe you, but of the secret history of the Almighty, and I shall pronounce thee mad.''
''We saw a pair of moose-horns on the shore, and I asked Joe if a moose had shed them; but he said there was a head attached to them, and I knew that they did not shed their heads more than once in their lives.''
''Having each some shingles of thought well dried, we sat and whittled them.''
''I hear many condemn these men because they were so few. When were the good and the brave ever in a majority? Would you have had him wait till that time came?till you and I came over to him?''
''I would have my thoughts, like wild apples, to be food for walkers, and will not warrant them to be palatable if tasted in the house.''
''A stranger may easily detect what is strange to the oldest inhabitant, for the strange is his province.''
''While England endeavors to cure the potato-rot, will not any endeavor to cure the brain-rot, which prevails so much more widely and fatally?''
''What is peculiar in the life of a man consists not in his obedience, but his opposition, to his instincts. In one direction or another he strives to live a supernatural life.''
''The impression made on me was that the French Canadians were even sharing the fate of the Indians, or at least gradually disappearing in what is called the Saxon current.''
''The fire is the main comfort of the camp, whether in summer or winter, and is about as ample at one season as at another. It is as well for cheerfulness as for warmth and dryness.''
''A man thinking or working is always alone, let him be where he will.''
''But perhaps a man is not required to bury himself.''
''True love does not quarrel for slight reasons, such mistakes as mutual acquaintances can explain away, but, alas, however slight the apparent cause, only for adequate and fatal and everlasting reasons, which can never be set aside.''
''When any lagged behind, the cry of "blueberries" was most effectual to bring them up.''
''Really to see the sun rise or go down every day, so to relate ourselves to a universal fact, would preserve us sane forever.''
''Mathematics should be mixed not only with physics but with ethics.''
''Again we took to the beach for another day (October 13), walking along the shore of the resounding sea, determined to get it into us. We wished to associate with the ocean until it lost the pond-like look which it wears to a countryman.''
''Say to the farmer: There is your crop; here is mine. Mine is a sugar to sweeten sugar with. If you will listen to me, I will sweeten your whole load,your whole life.''
''An efficient and valuable man does what he can, whether the community pay him for it or not. The inefficient offer their inefficiency to the highest bidder, and are forever expecting to be put into office. One would suppose that they were rarely disappointed.''
''The monument of death will outlast the memory of the dead. The Pyramids do not tell the tale which was confided to them; the living fact commemorates itself.''
''The very dogs that sullenly bay the moon from farm-yards in these nights excite more heroism in our breasts than all the civil exhortations or war sermons of the age.''
''What would human life be without forests, those natural cities?''
''The repugnance to animal food is not the effect of experience, but is an instinct. It appeared more beautiful to live low and fare hard in many respects; and though I never did so, I went far enough to please my imagination.''
''He should be as vigorous as a sugar maple, with sap enough to maintain his own verdure,... and not like a vine, which being cut in the spring bears no fruit, but bleeds to death in the endeavor to heal its wounds.''
''It will soon be forgotten, in these days of stoves, that we used to roast potatoes in the ashes, after the Indian fashion.''
''Nature is goodness crystallized.''
''If I were confined to a corner of a garret all my days, like a spider, the world would be just as large to me while I had my thoughts about me.''