Ralph Waldo Emerson

(1803 - 1882 / Boston / United States)

Ralph Waldo Emerson Quotes

  • ''Wisdom is like electricity. There is no permanently wise man, but men capable of wisdom, who, being put into certain company, or other favorable conditions, become wise for a short time, as glasses rubbed acquire electric power for a while.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Clubs," Society and Solitude (1870).
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  • ''I am ready to die out of nature, and be born again into this new yet unapproachable America I have found in the West.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Experience," Essays, Second Series (1844).
  • ''But Nature is no sentimentalist,—does not cosset or pamper us. We must see the world is rough and surly, and will not mind drowning a man or a woman; but swallows your ship like a grain of dust.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Fate," The Conduct of Life (1860).
  • ''When he became all eye when one was present, and all memory when one was gone; when the youth becomes the watcher of windows, and studious of a glove, a veil, a ribbon, or the wheels of a carriage, when no place is too solitary, and none too silent.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Love," Essays, First Series (1841, repr. 1847).
  • ''It is an odd jealousy: but the poet finds himself not near enough to his object. The pine-tree, the river, the bank of flowers before him, does not seem to be nature. Nature is still elsewhere.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Nature," Essays: Second Series (1844).
  • ''We are amphibious creatures, weaponed for two elements, having two sets of faculties, the particular and the catholic.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Nominalist and Realist," Essays, Second Series (1844).
  • ''Not he is great who can alter matter, but he who can alter my state of mind.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. Oration, August 31, 1837, delivered before the Phi Beta Kappa Society, Cambridge, Massachusetts. "The American Scholar," repr. In Emerson: Essays and Lectures, ed. Joel Porte (1983).
  • ''As the traveller who has lost his way, throws his reins on his horse's neck, and trusts to the instinct of the animal to find his road, so must we do with the divine animal who carries us through this world.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "The Poet," Essays, Second Series (1844).
  • ''An empire is an immense egotism.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. Lecture, February 7, 1844, delivered to Mercantile Library Association, Boston. "The Young American," published in Addresses and Lectures (1849).
  • ''In the Greek cities, it was reckoned profane, that any person should pretend a property in a work of art, which belonged to all who could behold it.''
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Wealth," 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

Nemesis

Already blushes in thy cheek
The bosom-thought which thou must speak;
The bird, how far it haply roam
By cloud or isle, is flying home;
The maiden fears, and fearing runs
Into the charmed snare she shuns;
And every man, in love or pride,
Of his fate is never wide.

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