Ralph Waldo Emerson

(1803 - 1882 / Boston / United States)

Ralph Waldo Emerson Quotes

  • ''There is no one who does not exaggerate. In conversation, men are encumbered with personality, and talk too much.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. :"Nominalist and Realist," Essays, Second Series (1844).
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  • ''Those who have ruled human destinies, like planets, for thousands of years, were not handsome men.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Beauty," The Conduct of Life (1860).
  • ''The covetousness or the malignity, which saddens me, when I ascribe it to society, is my own. I am environed by my self.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Character," Essays, Second Series (1844).
  • ''No performance is worth loss of geniality. 'Tis a cruel price we pay for certain fancy goods called fine arts and philosophy.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Culture," The Conduct of Life (1860).
  • ''In skating over thin ice, our safety is in our speed.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. Essays, "Prudence," First Series (1841).
  • ''It should never fall into something usual and settled, but should be alert and inventive, and add rhyme and reason to what was drudgery.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Friendship," Essays, First Series (1841, repr. 1847).
  • ''For the most part, the town has deserved the name it wears. I find our annals marked with a uniform good sense. I find no ridiculous laws, no eavesdropping legislators, no hanging of witches, no whipping of Quakers, no unnatural crimes.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. Speech, September 12, 1835, on the occasion of the second centennial anniversary of the town of Concord. "Historical Discourse at Concord," Miscellanies (1883, repr. 1903).
  • ''But I shall hear without pain, that I play the courtier very ill, and talk of that which I do not well understand.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Manners," Essays, Second Series (1844).
  • ''The invariable mark of wisdom is to see the miraculous in the common.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. Nature, ch. 8 (1836, revised and repr. 1849).
  • ''If the tongue had not been framed for articulation, man would still be a beast in the forest.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Plato; or, the Philosopher," Representative Men (1850).

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Best Poem of Ralph Waldo Emerson

Fate

Deep in the man sits fast his fate
To mould his fortunes, mean or great:
Unknown to Cromwell as to me
Was Cromwell's measure or degree;
Unknown to him as to his horse,
If he than his groom be better or worse.
He works, plots, fights, in rude affairs,
With squires, lords, kings, his craft compares,
Till late he learned, through doubt and fear,
Broad England harbored not his peer:
Obeying time, the last to own
The Genius from its cloudy throne.
For the prevision is allied
Unto the thing so signified;
Or say, the foresight that awaits
Is...

Read the full of Fate

My Garden

If I could put my woods in song
And tell what's there enjoyed,
All men would to my gardens throng,
And leave the cities void.

In my plot no tulips blow,--
Snow-loving pines and oaks instead;
And rank the savage maples grow
From Spring's faint flush to Autumn red.

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