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RALPH WALDO EMERSON
American essayist and poet
(1803 - 1882)
  CHECK READING LIST (5)    << Prev Page    Displaying page 38 of 39    Next Page >> 

We do not count a man's years, until he has nothing else to count.
      - Society and Solitude--Old Age [Age]

Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year. No man has learned anything rightly, until he knows that every day is Doomsday.
      - Society and Solitude--Work and Days [Time]

Art and power will go on as they have done,--will make day out of night, time out of space, and space out of time.
      - Society and Solitude--Works and Days
        [Destiny]

No book was ever written down by any but itself.
      - Spiritual Laws [Reputation]

Wilt thou seal up the avenues of ill?
  Pay every debt as if God wrote the bill!
      - Suum Cuique [Debt]

Fear always springs from ignorance.
      - The American Scholar [Fear]

Man Thinking; him Nature solicits with all her placid, all her monitory pictures; him the past instructs; him the future invites. Is not indeed every man a student, and do not all things exist for the student's behoof? And, finally, is not the true scholar the only true master? But the old oracle said, "All things have two handles: beware of the wrong one."
      - The American Scholar,
        Phi Beta Kappa Address [Thinking]

Chide me not, laborious band!
  For the idle flowers I brought;
    Every aster in my hand
      Goes home loaded with a thought.
      - The Apology [Asters]

I do not see how a barbarous community and a civilized community can constitute a state. I think we must get rid of slavery or we must get rid of freedom.
      - The Assault upon Mr. Sumner's Speech
        [Slavery]

Fine manners need the support of fine manners in others.
      - The Conduct of Life--Behavior [Manners]

Burly, dozing humblebee,
  Where thou art is clime for me.
    Let them sail for Porto Rique,
      Far-off heats through seas to seek.
        I will follow thee alone,
          Thou animated torrid-zone!
      - The Humble-Bee [Bees]

Seeing only what is fair,
  Sipping only what is sweet,
    . . . .
      Leave the chaff, and take the wheat.
      - The Humble-Bee [Bees]

Though I am weak, yet God, when prayed,
  Cannot withhold his conquering air.
      - The Nun's Aspiration [Prayer]

Earth proudly wears the Parthenon
  As best gem upon her zone.
      - The Problem [Architecture]

I like the church, I like a cowl,
  I love a prophet of the soul;
    And on my heart monastic aisles
      Fall like sweet strains or pensive smiles;
        Yet not for all his faith can see,
          Would I that cowled churchman be.
      - The Problem [Religion]

Not from a vain or shallow thought
  His awful Jove young Phidias brought.
      - The Problem [Sculpture]

Out from the heart of nature rolled
  The burdens of the Bible old.
      - The Problem [Scripture]

The hand that rounded Peter's dome
  And groined the aisles of Christian Rome,
    Wrought in a sad sincerity;
      Himself from God he could not free;
        He builded better than he knew;
          The conscious stone to beauty grew.
      - The Problem [Architecture]

The word unto the prophet spoken
  Was writ on tablets yet unbroken:
    The word by seers or sibyls told,
      In groves of oak or fanes of gold,
        Still floats upon the morning wind,
          Still whispers to the willing mind.
      - The Problem [Scripture]

Rhodora! if the sages ask thee why
  This charm is wasted on the marsh and sky,
    Tell them, dear, that if eyes were made for seeing,
      Then beauty is its own excuse for being.
      - The Rhodora [Beauty]

Announced by all the trumpets of the sky,
  Arrives the snow, and, driving o'er the fields,
    Seems nowhere to alight: the whited air
      Hides hills and woods, the river, and the heaven,
        And veils the farmhouse at the garden's end.
          The sled and traveller stopped, the courier's feet
            Delayed, all friends shut out, the housemates sit
              Around the radiant fireplace, enclosed
                In a tumultuous privacy of storm.
      - The Snow-Storm [Snow : Winter]

Come, see the north-wind's masonry,
  Out of an unseen quarry evermore
    Furnished with tile, the fierce artificer
      Curves his white bastions with projected roof
        Round every windward stake, or tree, or door.
          Speeding, the myriad-handed, his wild work
            So fanciful, so savage, naught cares he
              For number or proportion.
      - The Snow-Storm [Snow : Winter]

'Tis good-will makes intelligence.
      - The Titmouse (l. 65) [Intellect]

He who has a thousand friends has not a friend to spare,
  And he who has one enemy will meet him everywhere.
      - Translations--From Omar Khayyam [Enemies]

Nature never sends a great man into the planet, without confiding the secret to another soul.
      - Uses of Great Men [Greatness]


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