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American author and naturalist
(1817 - 1862)
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I did not see why the schoolmaster should be taxed to support the priest, and not the priest the schoolmaster.
      - [Taxation]

I do not know at first what it is that harms me. The men and things of to-day are wont to be fairer and truer in to-morrow's memory.
      - [Appreciation]

I have a great deal of company in the house, especially in the morning when nobody calls.
      - [Solitude]

I have climbed several higher mountains without guide or path, and have found, as might be expected, that it takes only more time and patience commonly than to travel the smoothest highway.
      - [Traveling]

I have myself to respect, but to myself I am not amiable; but my friend is my amiableness personified.
      - [Friends]

I know of no more encouraging fact than the unquestionable ability of man to elevate his life by conscious endeavor.
      - [Endeavor]

I lose my respect for the man who can make the mystery of sex the subject of a coarse jest, yet when you speak earnestly and seriously on the subject, is silent.
      - [Sex]

I love to be alone. I never found the companion that was so companionable as solitude.
      - [Solitude]

I saw a delicate flower had grown up two feet high, between the horses' path and the wheel-track. An inch more to the right or left had sealed its fate, or an inch higher; and yet it lived to flourish as much as if it had a thousand acres of untrodden space around it, and never knew the danger it incurred. It did not borrow trouble, nor invite an evil fate by apprehending it.
      - [Fear]

I say, beware of all enterprises that require new clothes, and not rather a new wearer of clothes.
      - [Apparel]

I think we may safely trust a good deal more than we do.
      - [Trust]

I was daily intoxicated, yet no man could call me intemperate.
      - [Drunkenness]

. . . I was rich, if not in money, in sunny hours and summer days. . . .
      - [Wealth]

I would rather sit on a pumpkin, and have it all to myself, than to be crowded on a velvet cushion.
      - [Independence]

If I knew that a man was coming to my house with the conscious design of doing me good, I should run for my life.
      - [Goodness]

If misery loves company, misery has company enough.
      - [Misery]

If we see nature as pausing, immediately all mortifies and decays; but seen as progressing, she is beautiful.
      - [Nature]

If you give money, spend yourself with it.
      - [Money]

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.
      - [Castles in the Air]

Impulse is, after all, the best linguist; its logic, if not conformable to Aristotle, cannot fail to be most convincing.
      - [Impulse]

In ancient days the Pythagoreans were used to change names with each other,--fancying that each would share the virtues they admired in the other.
      - [Names]

In human intercourse the tragedy begins, not when there is misunderstanding about words, but when silence is not understood.
      - [Silence]

It is a natural resurrection, an experience of immortality.
      - [Spring]

It is not when I am going to meet him, but when I am just turning away and leaving him alone, that I discover what God is. I say, God. I am not sure that that is the name. You will know what I mean.
      - in a letter found in H.G.O. Blake's "Thoreau's Thoughts," p. 49

It is something to be able to paint a particular picture, or to carve a statue, and so to make a few objects beautiful; but it is far more glorious to carve and paint the very atmosphere and medium through which we look . . . To affect the quality of the day--that is the highest of arts.
      - [Art]

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