Ralph Waldo Emerson
- Hitch your wagon to a star.
- We boil at different degrees.
- When we quarrel, how we wish we had been blameless.
- We ascribe beauty to that which is simple; which has no superfluous parts; which exactly answers its end; which stands related to all things; which is the mean of many extremes.
- Things are pretty, graceful, rich, elegant, handsome, but, until they speak to the imagination, not yet beautiful.
- Every man has his own courage, and is betrayed because he seeks in himself the courage of other persons.
- Our fear of death is like our fear that summer will be short, but when we have had our swing of pleasure, our fill of fruit, and our swelter of heat, we say we have had our day.
- Life is a succession of lessons which must be lived to be understood.
- A man finds room in the few square inches of the face for the traits of all his ancestors; for the expression of all his history, and his wants.
- Flowers...are a proud assertion that a ray of beauty outvalues all the utilities of the world.
- Let the stoics say what they please, we do not eat for the good of living, but because the meat is savory and the appetite is keen.
- A friend may well be reckoned the masterpiece of nature.
- It is one of the blessings of old friends that you can afford to be stupid with them.
- The only way to have a friend is to be one.
- Genius always finds itself a century too early.
- In every work of genius we recognize our own rejected thoughts: they come back to us with a certain alienated majesty.
- The louder he talked of his honor, the faster we counted our spoons.
- There are no days in life so memorable as those which vibrated to some stroke of the imagination.
- There is no beautifier of complexion, or form, or behavior, like the wish to scatter joy and not pain around us.
- Every violation of truth is not only a sort of suicide in the liar, but is a stab at the health of human society.
- Manners are the happy way of doing things; each once a stroke of genius or of love--now repeated and hardened into usage. They form at last a rich varnish, with which the routine of life is washed, and its details adorned. If they are superficial, so are the dewdrops which give such depth to the morning meadows.
- The value of a dollar is social, as it is created by society.
- Money, which represents the prose of life, and which is hardly spoken of in parlors without an apology, is, in its effects and laws, as beautiful as roses.
- [Music] takes us out of the actual and whispers to us dim secrets that startle our wonder as to who we are, and for what, whence, and whereto.
- How cunningly nature hides every wrinkle of her inconceivable antiquity under roses and violets and morning dew!
- People only see what they are prepared to see.
- 'Tis the good reader that makes the good book; a good head cannot read amiss: in every book he finds passages which seem confidences or asides hidden from all else and unmistakeably meant for his ear.
- Let every man shovel out his own snow and the whole city will be passable.
- The days come and go like muffled and veiled figures sent from a distant friendly party, but they say nothing, and if we do not use the gifts they bring, they carry them as silently away.
- Trust thyself: every heart vibrates to that iron string.
- God offers to every mind its choice between truth and repose. Take which you please; you can never have both.
- Those who stay away from the election think that one vote will do no good: 'Tis but one step more to think one vote will do no harm.
- Wisdom has its root in goodness, not goodness its root in wisdom.
- The maker of a sentence launches out into the infinite and builds a road into Chaos and old Night, and is followed by those who hear him with something of wild, creative delight.