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Ralph Waldo Emerson Quotes


American philosopher, essayist, and poet.
(1803 - 1882)

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. . .but if I am the Devil's child, I will live then from the Devil.
 

...the great man is he who in the midst of the crowd keeps with perfect sweetness, the independence of solitude.
[Solitude]
 

A believer, a mind whose faith is consciousness, is never disturbed because other persons do not yet see the fact which he sees.
 

A chief event of life is the day in which we have encountered a mind that startled us.
 

A child is a curly, dimpled lunatic.
 

A cynic can chill and dishearten with a single word.
[Cynicism]
 

A day is a miniature eternity.
[One Day]
 

A feeble man can see the farms that are fenced and tilled, the houses that are built. The strong man sees the possible houses and farms. His eye makes estates as fast as the sun breeds clouds.
[Hope]
 

A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines. With consistency a great soul has simply nothing to do. He may as well concern himself with his shadow on the wall. Speak what you think now in hard words and tomorrow speak what tomorrow thinks in hard words again, though it contradict everything you said today.
[Consistency]
 

A friend is a person with whom I may be sincere. Before him, I may think aloud.
[Friendship]
 

A friend is one before whom I may think aloud.
 

A friend might well be reckoned the masterpiece of nature.
[Family]
 

A good indignation brings out all one's powers.
[Anger]
 

A good intention but fixed and resolute - bent on high and holy ends, we shall find means to them on every side and at every moment; and even obstacles and opposition will but make us "like the fabled specter-ships," which sail the fastest in the very teeth of the wind.
 

A good intention clothes itself with power.
[Resolution]
 

A good symbol is the best argument, and is a missionary to persuade thousands.
 

A great man is always willing to be little.
 

A great man quotes bravely, and will not draw on his invention when his memory serves him with a word as good. - What he quotes he fills with his own voice and humor, and the whole cyclopedia of his table-talk is presently believed to be his own.
[Quotations]
 

A great man stands on God. A small man stands on a great man.
[Greatness]
 

A great part of courage is the courage of having done the thing before.
[Courage]
 


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