Ralph Waldo Emerson

(1803 - 1882 / Boston / United States)

Ralph Waldo Emerson Quotes

  • ''Friendship, like the immortality of the soul, is too good to be believed.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Friendship," Essays, First Series (1841, repr. 1847).
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  • ''We rail at trade, but the historian of the world will see that it was the principle of liberty; that it settled America, and destroyed feudalism, and made peace and keeps peace; that it will abolish slavery.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. Journals, entry for Jan. 1844 (1909-1914).
  • ''The Americans have many virtues, but they have not Faith and Hope. I know no two words whose meaning is more lost sight of.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. Speech, January 25, 1841, before the Mechanics' Apprentices' Library Association, Boston, Massachusetts. "Man the Reformer," Nature, Addresses, and Lectures (1849).
  • ''What angels invented these splendid ornaments, these rich conveniences, this ocean of air above, this ocean of water beneath, this firmament of earth between? this zodiac of lights, this tent of dropping clouds, this striped coat of climates, this fourfold year?''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. Nature, ch. 2 (1836, revised and repr. 1849).
  • ''The Same, the Same: friend and foe are of one stuff; the ploughman, the plough, and the furrow, are of one stuff; and the stuff is such, and so much, that the variations of form are unimportant.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Plato; or, the Philosopher," Representative Men (1850).
  • ''For, truly speaking, whoever provokes me to a good act or thought has given me a pledge of his fidelity to virtue,—he has come under the bonds to adhere to that cause to which we are jointly attached.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. Quoted in Notes to "The Lord's Supper," Miscellanies (1883, repr. 1903). Part of this passage from Emerson's farewell letter to his congregation was later used in "The Divinity School Address." See the quotation under the subject "Conversation."
  • ''Whenever a mind is simple and receives an old wisdom, old things pass away,—means, teachers, texts, temples fall; it lives now, and absorbs past and future into present hour. All things are made sacred by relation to it,—one as much as another.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Self-Reliance," Essays, First Series (1841, repr. 1847).
  • ''In a tumultuous privacy of storm.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "The Snow-Storm," Poems (1847).
  • ''The customer is the immediate jewel of our souls. Him we flatter, him we feast, compliment, vote for, and will not contradict.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Address Delivered in Concord on the Anniversary of the Emancipation of the Negroes in the British West Indies, August 1, 1844," Miscellanies (1883, repr. 1903).
  • ''Friendship should be surrounded with ceremonies and respects, and not crushed into corners. Friendship requires more time than poor busy men can usually command.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Behavior," The Conduct of Life (1860).

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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

Alphonso Of Castile

I Alphonso live and learn,
Seeing nature go astern.
Things deteriorate in kind,
Lemons run to leaves and rind,
Meagre crop of figs and limes,
Shorter days and harder times.
Flowering April cools and dies
In the insufficient skies;
Imps at high Midsummer blot

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