Quotations From HENRY DAVID THOREAU

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  • 21.
    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.
    Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), U.S. philosopher, author, naturalist. "Chesuncook" (1858) in The Maine Woods (1864), in The Writings of Henry David Thoreau, vol. 3, p. 100, Houghton Mifflin (1906). Thoreau's metaphor for the half-civilized nature of this state rests upon the presence of sailboats as well as steamers on the lake.
  • 22.
    It makes no odds where a man goes or stays, if he is only about his business.
    Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), U.S. philosopher, author, naturalist. Letter, February 7, 1855, to Thomas Cholmondeley, in The Writings of Henry David Thoreau, vol. 6, p. 251, Houghton Mifflin (1906).
  • 23.
    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.
    Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), U.S. philosopher, author, naturalist. A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers (1849), in The Writings of Henry David Thoreau, vol. 1, p. 10, Houghton Mifflin (1906).

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  • 24.
    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.
    Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), U.S. philosopher, author, naturalist. "Chesuncook" (1858) in The Maine Woods (1864), in The Writings of Henry David Thoreau, vol. 3, p. 154, Houghton Mifflin (1906).
  • 25.
    I have not the most definite designs on the future.
    Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), U.S. philosopher, author, naturalist. A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers (1849), in The Writings of Henry David Thoreau, vol. 1, p. 74, Houghton Mifflin (1906).

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  • 26.
    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.
    Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), U.S. philosopher, author, naturalist. A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers (1849), in The Writings of Henry David Thoreau, vol. 1, p. 386, Houghton Mifflin (1906).

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  • 27.
    He who eats the fruit should at least plant the seed; ay, if possible, a better seed than that whose fruit he has enjoyed.
    Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), U.S. philosopher, author, naturalist. A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers (1849), in The Writings of Henry David Thoreau, vol. 1, p. 129, Houghton Mifflin (1906).
  • 28.
    What is called resignation is confirmed desperation.
    Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), U.S. philosopher, author, naturalist. Walden, "Economy," (1854).
  • 29.
    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.
    Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), U.S. philosopher, author, naturalist. "The Service: Qualities of the Recruit" (1840), in The Writings of Henry David Thoreau, vol. 4, p. 278, Houghton Mifflin (1906).

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  • 30.
    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.
    Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), U.S. philosopher, author, naturalist. A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers (1849), in The Writings of Henry David Thoreau, vol. 1, p. 363, Houghton Mifflin (1906).

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