Henry David Thoreau

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

Henry David Thoreau Quotes

  • ''Let the beautiful laws prevail. Let us not weary ourselves by resisting them.''
    Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), U.S. philosopher, author, naturalist. Letter, April 3, 1850, to Harrison Blake, in The Writings of Henry David Thoreau, vol. 6, p. 177, Houghton Mifflin (1906).
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  • ''I am too easily contented with a slight and almost animal happiness. My happiness is a good deal like that of the woodchucks.''
    Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), U.S. philosopher, author, naturalist. Letter, May 2, 1848, to Harrison Blake, in The Writings of Henry David Thoreau, vol. 6, p. 168, Houghton Mifflin (1906).
  • ''According to my observation, a batteau, properly manned, shoots rapids as a matter of course, which a single Indian with a canoe carries round.''
    Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), U.S. philosopher, author, naturalist. "The Allegash and East Branch" (1864) in The Maine Woods (1864), in The Writings of Henry David Thoreau, vol. 3, p. 275, Houghton Mifflin (1906).
  • ''He utters substantial English thoughts in plainest English dialects.... Indeed, for fluency and skill in the use of the English tongue, he is a master unrivaled. His felicity and power of expression surpass even his special merits as historian and critic.''
    Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), U.S. philosopher, author, naturalist. "Thomas Carlyle and His Works" (1847), in The Writings of Henry David Thoreau, vol. 4, p. 324, Houghton Mifflin (1906).
  • ''For my part, I could easily do without the post-office. I think that there are very few important communications made through it.''
    Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), U.S. philosopher, author, naturalist. Walden (1854), in The Writings of Henry David Thoreau, vol. 2, p. 104, Houghton Mifflin (1906).
  • ''The other side of the globe is but the home of our correspondent. Our voyaging is only great-circle sailing.''
    Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), U.S. philosopher, author, naturalist. Walden (1854), in The Writings of Henry David Thoreau, vol. 2, p. 352, Houghton Mifflin (1906).
  • ''The words which express our faith and piety are not definite; yet they are significant and fragrant like frankincense to superior natures.''
    Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), U.S. philosopher, author, naturalist. Walden (1854), in The Writings of Henry David Thoreau, vol. 2, p. 357, Houghton Mifflin (1906).
  • ''In wildness is the preservation of the world.''
    Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), U.S. philosopher, author, naturalist. Walking, Atlantic Monthly (Boston, June 1862).
  • ''The thoughtful man becomes a hermit in the thoroughfares of the marketplace.''
    Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), U.S. philosopher, author, naturalist. "A Plea for Captain John Brown" (1859), in The Writings of Henry David Thoreau, vol. 4, p. 421, Houghton Mifflin (1906).
  • ''They are so greedy and impetuous that they are frequently caught by being entangled in the line the moment it is cast.''
    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. 29, 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

Inspiration

Whate'er we leave to God, God does,
And blesses us;
The work we choose should be our own,
God leaves alone.

If with light head erect I sing,
Though all the Muses lend their force,
From my poor love of anything,
The verse is weak and shallow as its source.

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