Ralph Waldo Emerson Quotes

Truth has not single victories; all things are its organs,—not only dust and stones, but errors and lies.
Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Spiritual Laws," Essays, First Series (1841, repr. 1847).
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We do what we must, and call it by the best names.
Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. The Conduct of Life, "Considerations by the Way," (1860).
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What we commonly call man, the eating, drinking, planting, counting man, does not, as we know him, represent himself, but misrepresents himself. Him we do not respect, but the soul, whose organ he is, would he let it appear through his action, would make our knees bend.
Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "The Over-Soul," Essays, First Series (1841, repr. 1847).
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The word by seers or sibyls told, In groves of oak, or fanes of gold, Still floats upon the morning wind, Still whispers to the willing mind. One accent of the Holy Ghost The heedless world hath never lost.
Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "The Problem," Poems (1847).
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Oxford is a little aristocracy in itself, numerous and dignified enough to rank with other estates in the realm; and where fame and secular promotion are to be had for study, and in a direction which has the unanimous respect of all cultivated nations.
Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Universities," English Traits (1856).
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The lord is the peasant that was, The peasant is the lord that shall be.
Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Woodnotes II," Poems (1847).
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Government exists to defend the weak and the poor and the injured party; the rich and the strong can better take care of themselves.
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).
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The delicious faces of children, the beauty of school-girls, "the sweet seriousness of sixteen," the lofty air of well-born, well-bred boys, the passionate histories in the looks and manners of youth and early manhood, and the varied power in all that well-known company that escort us through life,—we know how these forms thrill, paralyze, provoke, inspire, and enlarge us.
Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Beauty," The Conduct of Life (1860).
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The men who carry their points do not need to inquire of their constituents what they should say, but are themselves the country which they represent: nowhere are its emotions or opinions so instant and so true as in them; nowhere so pure from a selfish infusion.
Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Character," Essays, Second Series (1844).
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The compensations of calamity are made apparent to the understanding also, after long intervals of time. A fever, a mutilation, a cruel disappointment, a loss of wealth, a loss of friends, seems at the moment unpaid loss, and unpayable. But the sure years reveal the deep remedial force that underlies all facts.
Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Compensation," Essays, First Series (1841).
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