Henry David Thoreau

(12 July 1817 – 6 May 1862 / Concord, Massachusetts)

Henry David Thoreau Quotes

  • ''Why will we be imposed on by antiquity?''
    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. 160, Houghton Mifflin (1906).
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  • ''A true Friendship is as wise as it is tender. The parties to it yield implicitly to the guidance of their love, and know no other law nor kindness.''
    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. 290, Houghton Mifflin (1906).
  • ''For the most part, the best man's spirit makes a fearful sprite to haunt his grave.''
    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. 178, Houghton Mifflin (1906).
  • ''This is an approach to that universal language which men have sought in vain.''
    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. 59, Houghton Mifflin (1906).
  • ''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).
  • ''God is only the president of the day, and Webster is his orator.''
    Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), U.S. philosopher, author, naturalist. "Conclusion," Walden (1854).
  • ''As to conforming outwardly, and living your own life inwardly, I have not a very high opinion of that course.''
    Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), U.S. philosopher, author, naturalist. Journals, entry in 1850 (1906).
  • ''Expect no trivial truth from me, unless I am on the witness- stand. I will come as near to lying as you can drive a coach and four.''
    Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), U.S. philosopher, author, naturalist. Letter, April 10, 1853, to Harrison Blake, in The Writings of Henry David Thoreau, vol. 6, p. 220, Houghton Mifflin (1906).
  • ''Hold fast to your most indefinite, waking dream.''
    Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), U.S. philosopher, author, naturalist. Letter, February 27, 1853, to Harrison Blake, in The Writings of Henry David Thoreau, vol. 6, p. 216, Houghton Mifflin (1906).
  • ''I am still a learner, not a teacher, feeding somewhat omnivorously, browsing both stalk and leaves; but I shall perhaps be enabled to speak with more precision and authority by and by,—if philosophy and sentiment are not buried under a multitude of details.''
    Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), U.S. philosopher, author, naturalist. Letter, May 21, 1856, to Harrison Blake, in The Writings of Henry David Thoreau, vol. 6, p. 280, Houghton Mifflin (1906).

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Best Poem of Henry David Thoreau

Friendship

I think awhile of Love, and while I think,
Love is to me a world,
Sole meat and sweetest drink,
And close connecting link
Tween heaven and earth.

I only know it is, not how or why,
My greatest happiness;
However hard I try,
Not if I were to die,
Can I explain.

I fain would ask my friend how it can be,
But when the time arrives,
Then Love is more lovely
Than anything to me,
And so I'm dumb.

For if the truth were known, Love cannot speak,
But only thinks and does;
Though surely out 'twill leak
Without the help of...

Read the full of Friendship

Epitaph On The World

Here lies the body of this world,
Whose soul alas to hell is hurled.
This golden youth long since was past,
Its silver manhood went as fast,
An iron age drew on at last;
'Tis vain its character to tell,
The several fates which it befell,
What year it died, when 'twill arise,
We only know that here it lies.

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