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Quotes by Henry David Thoreau

Welcome to our collection of quotes (with shareable picture quotes) by Henry David Thoreau. We hope you enjoy pondering them and that you will share them widely.

Wikipedia Summary for Henry David Thoreau

Henry David Thoreau (see name pronunciation; July 12, 1817 – May 6, 1862) was an American naturalist, essayist, poet, and philosopher. A leading transcendentalist, he is best known for his book Walden, a reflection upon simple living in natural surroundings, and his essay "Civil Disobedience" (originally published as "Resistance to Civil Government"), an argument for disobedience to an unjust state.

Thoreau's books, articles, essays, journals, and poetry amount to more than 20 volumes. Among his lasting contributions are his writings on natural history and philosophy, in which he anticipated the methods and findings of ecology and environmental history, two sources of modern-day environmentalism. His literary style interweaves close observation of nature, personal experience, pointed rhetoric, symbolic meanings, and historical lore, while displaying a poetic sensibility, philosophical austerity, and attention to practical detail. He was also deeply interested in the idea of survival in the face of hostile elements, historical change, and natural decay; at the same time he advocated abandoning waste and illusion in order to discover life's true essential needs.

Thoreau was a lifelong abolitionist, delivering lectures that attacked the Fugitive Slave Law while praising the writings of Wendell Phillips and defending the abolitionist John Brown. Thoreau's philosophy of civil disobedience later influenced the political thoughts and actions of such notable figures as Leo Tolstoy, Mahatma Gandhi, and Martin Luther King Jr.

Thoreau is sometimes referred to as an anarchist. In "Civil Disobedience", Thoreau wrote: "I heartily accept the motto,—'That government is best which governs least;' and I should like to see it acted up to more rapidly and systematically. Carried out, it finally amounts to this, which also I believe,—'That government is best which governs not at all;' and when men are prepared for it, that will be the kind of government which they will have. [...] I ask for, not at once no government, but at once a better government."

Quote: Justice is sweet and musical; but injustice is harsh and discordant. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of close-up photograph of black dreadnought acoustic guitar

Justice is sweet and musical; but injustice is harsh and discordant.


Quote: No man ever stood the lower in my estimation for having a patch in his clothes; yet I am sure that there is greater anxiety, commonly, to have fashionable, or at least clean and unpatched clothes, than to have a sound conscience. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of woman in blue dress standing on green grass field during daytime

No man ever stood the lower in my estimation for having a patch in his clothes; yet I am sure that there is greater anxiety, commonly, to have fashionable, or at least clean and unpatched clothes, than to have a sound conscience.


Quote: What I am must make you forget what I wear. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of 100 us dollar bill

What I am must make you forget what I wear.


Quote: It is the greatest of advantages to enjoy no advantage at all. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of person submerged on body of water holding sparkler

It is the greatest of advantages to enjoy no advantage at all.


Quote: Each man can interpret another's experience only by his own. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of coffee latte near white wireless keyboard and Apple EarPods on the table photography

Each man can interpret another's experience only by his own.


Quote: A man thinks as well through his legs and arms as his brain. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of bare tree on mountain during sunset

A man thinks as well through his legs and arms as his brain.




Quote: I believe that the mind can be permanently profaned by the habit of attending to trivial things. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of blue glass heart

I believe that the mind can be permanently profaned by the habit of attending to trivial things.


Quote: All good things are cheap: all bad are very dear. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of sunset dirt road

All good things are cheap: all bad are very dear.


Quote: All good things are wild and free. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of grassland

All good things are wild and free.


Quote: The civilized man is a more experienced and wiser savage. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of men's white dress shirt

The civilized man is a more experienced and wiser savage.


Quote: As in geology, so in social institutions, we may discover the causes of all past changes in the present invariable order of society. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of orange and white tabby cat on pink background

As in geology, so in social institutions, we may discover the causes of all past changes in the present invariable order of society.


Quote: Our taste is too delicate and particular. It says nay to the poet's work, but never yea to his hope. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of gray concrete surface

Our taste is too delicate and particular. It says nay to the poet's work, but never yea to his hope.


Quote: There are two seasons when the leaves are in their glory, their green and perfect youth in June and this their ripe old age. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of clear hour glass with brown frame

There are two seasons when the leaves are in their glory, their green and perfect youth in June and this their ripe old age.


Quote: How did these beautiful rainbow tints get into the shell of the freshwater clam buried in the mud at the bottom of our dark river? Even the sea-bottom tells of the upper skies. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of blue and white abstract painting

How did these beautiful rainbow tints get into the shell of the freshwater clam buried in the mud at the bottom of our dark river? Even the sea-bottom tells of the upper skies.


Quote: Be yourself -- not your idea of what you think somebody else's idea of yourself should be. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of three clear glass cups

Be yourself -- not your idea of what you think somebody else's idea of yourself should be.


Quote: In the wilderness is the salvation of the world. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of man and woman kissing beside body of water during daytime

In the wilderness is the salvation of the world.


Quote: Be not anxious to avoid poverty. In this way the wealth of the universe may be securely invested. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of green mountain ]

Be not anxious to avoid poverty. In this way the wealth of the universe may be securely invested.


Quote: Hinduism is the soil into which India's roots are stuck and torn out of that she will inevitably wither as a tree torn out from its place. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of white flowers in brown stem

Hinduism is the soil into which India's roots are stuck and torn out of that she will inevitably wither as a tree torn out from its place.


Quote: Make no mistake, without Hinduism, India has no future. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of rainbow

Make no mistake, without Hinduism, India has no future.


Quote: Improve every opportunity to be melancholy. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of 100 us dollar bill

Improve every opportunity to be melancholy.


Quote: Youth gets together with their materials to build a bridge to the moon or maybe a palace on earth; then in middle age they decide to build a woodshed with them instead. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of white brick wall planning

Youth gets together with their materials to build a bridge to the moon or maybe a palace on earth; then in middle age they decide to build a woodshed with them instead.


Quote: One attraction in coming to the woods to live was that I should have leisure and opportunity to see the spring come in. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of green trees under white sky during daytime

One attraction in coming to the woods to live was that I should have leisure and opportunity to see the spring come in.


Quote: Nothing makes the earth so spacious as to have friends at a distance. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of orange tabby kitten

Nothing makes the earth so spacious as to have friends at a distance.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

Nothing makes the earth seem so spacious as to have friends at a distance, they make the latitudes and longitudes.


Quote: Our manners have been corrupted by communication with the saints. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of green fruit in macro lens photography

Our manners have been corrupted by communication with the saints.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

Our manners have been corrupted by communication with the saints. Our hymn-books resound with a melodious cursing of God and enduring Him forever. One would say that even the prophets and redeemers had rather consoled the fears than confirmed the hopes of man. There is nowhere recorded a simple and irrepressible satisfaction with the gift of life, any memorable praise of God.


Quote: The universe constantly and obediently answers to our conceptions; whether we travel fast or slow, the track is laid for us. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of man and woman in wedding dress walking on brown grass field during daytime

The universe constantly and obediently answers to our conceptions; whether we travel fast or slow, the track is laid for us.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

The universe constantly and obediently answers to our conceptions; whether we travel fast or slow, the track is laid for us. Let us spend our lives in conceiving then. The poet or the artist never yet had so fair and noble a design but some of his posterity at least could accomplish it.


Quote: One must maintain a little bit of summer even in the middle of winter. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of person with flashlight near lighted green tree on mountain under starry night

One must maintain a little bit of summer even in the middle of winter.


Quote: As I go through the woods now, so many oak and other leaves have fallen the rustling noise somewhat disturbs my musing. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of man in blue jacket and blue pants carrying black and red backpack standing on snow covered

As I go through the woods now, so many oak and other leaves have fallen the rustling noise somewhat disturbs my musing.


Quote: You must love the crust of the earth on which you dwell more than the sweet crust of any bread or cake; you must be able to extract nutriment out of a sand heap. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of brown and white humming bird

You must love the crust of the earth on which you dwell more than the sweet crust of any bread or cake; you must be able to extract nutriment out of a sand heap.


Quote: This is the month of nuts and nutty thoughts,--that November whose name sounds so bleak and cheerless. Perhaps its harvest of thought is worth more than all the other crops of the year. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of solid background

This is the month of nuts and nutty thoughts,--that November whose name sounds so bleak and cheerless. Perhaps its harvest of thought is worth more than all the other crops of the year.


Quote: How few are aware that in winter, when the earth is covered with snow and ice...the sunset is double. The winter is coming when I shall walk the sky. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of silhouette of person spreading hands

How few are aware that in winter, when the earth is covered with snow and ice...the sunset is double. The winter is coming when I shall walk the sky.


Quote: All expression of truth does at length take this deep ethical form. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of two dogs sitting on maroon area rug

All expression of truth does at length take this deep ethical form.


Quote: Me thinks that the moment my legs begin to move, my thoughts begin to flow. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of blue and black butterfly

Me thinks that the moment my legs begin to move, my thoughts begin to flow.


Quote: One must maintain a little bit of summer, even in the middle of winter. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of wide lake over sunset view

One must maintain a little bit of summer, even in the middle of winter.


Quote: The is one consolation in being sick; and that is the possibility that you may recover to a better state than you were ever in before. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of person holding magnifying glass near desk globe

The is one consolation in being sick; and that is the possibility that you may recover to a better state than you were ever in before.


Quote: The wildness and adventure that are in fishing still recommend it to me. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of brown rocky mountain under blue sky during daytime

The wildness and adventure that are in fishing still recommend it to me.


Quote: Be true to your work your word and your friend. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of orange flowers

Be true to your work your word and your friend.


Quote: Satan from one of his elevations, showed mankind the kingdom of California, and they entered into a compact with him at once. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of yellow green leaf

Satan from one of his elevations, showed mankind the kingdom of California, and they entered into a compact with him at once.


Quote: Tis healthy to be sick sometimes. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of tall green flowering grasses under blue and white cloudy sky

Tis healthy to be sick sometimes.


Quote: You must not only aim right, but draw the bow with all your might. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of yellow sunflowers under white clouds and blue sky

You must not only aim right, but draw the bow with all your might.


Quote: Live each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influences of each. -- . by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of body of water

Live each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influences of each. -- .


Quote: Cold and hunger seem more friendly to my nature than those methods which men have adopted and advise to ward them off. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of green trees under white sky during daytime

Cold and hunger seem more friendly to my nature than those methods which men have adopted and advise to ward them off.


Quote: There is no treatment for adore, but to love far more. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of white pampas grasses near body of water at daytime

There is no treatment for adore, but to love far more.


Quote: I have myself to respect, but to myself I am not amiable; but my friend is my amiableness personified. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of silhouette photography of trees and sky

I have myself to respect, but to myself I am not amiable; but my friend is my amiableness personified.


Quote: Nature is an admirable schoolmistress. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of 100 us dollar bill

Nature is an admirable schoolmistress.


Quote: On every hand we observe a truly wise practice, in education, in morals, and in the arts of life, the embodied wisdom of many an ancient philosopher. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of foggy mountains

On every hand we observe a truly wise practice, in education, in morals, and in the arts of life, the embodied wisdom of many an ancient philosopher.


Quote: Unless we do more than simply learn the trade of our time, we are but apprentices, and not yet masters of the art of life. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of white brown and black cat on brown dried leaves

Unless we do more than simply learn the trade of our time, we are but apprentices, and not yet masters of the art of life.


Quote: I begin to see an object when I cease to understand it. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of photo of outer space

I begin to see an object when I cease to understand it.


Quote: As a true patriot, I should be ashamed to think that Adam in paradise was more favorably situated on the whole than the backwoodsman in this country. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of pink lotus flower on clear body of water

As a true patriot, I should be ashamed to think that Adam in paradise was more favorably situated on the whole than the backwoodsman in this country.


Quote: When was it that men agreed to respect the appearance and not the reality? by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of blue and black ball on blue and white checkered textile

When was it that men agreed to respect the appearance and not the reality?


Quote: It enriches us infinitely to recognize greater qualities than we possess in another. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of white and brown corgi besides brown dog

It enriches us infinitely to recognize greater qualities than we possess in another.


Quote: The community has no bribe that will tempt a wise man. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of close shot of yellow flowers

The community has no bribe that will tempt a wise man.


Quote: When the far mountains are invisible, the near ones look the higher. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of woman singing on stage

When the far mountains are invisible, the near ones look the higher.


Quote: Events, circumstances, etc., have their origin in ourselves. They spring from seeds which we have sown. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of black white and orange butterfly perched on purple flower in close up photography during daytime

Events, circumstances, etc., have their origin in ourselves. They spring from seeds which we have sown.


Quote: Every man is entitled to come to Cattle-Show, even a transcendentalist; and for my part I am more interested in the men than in the cattle. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of lighted candle in dark room

Every man is entitled to come to Cattle-Show, even a transcendentalist; and for my part I am more interested in the men than in the cattle.


Quote: Friends will be much apart. They will respect more each other's privacy than their communion. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of green ceramic mug on wooden desk

Friends will be much apart. They will respect more each other's privacy than their communion.


Quote: If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of green trees under white sky during daytime

If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away. It is not important that he should mature as soon as an apple-tree or oak. Shall he turn his spring into summer? If the condition of things which we were made for is not yet, what were any reality which we can substitute? We will not be shipwrecked on a vain reality.


Quote: Every man has to learn the points of the compass again as often as he awakes, whether from sleep or any abstraction. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of person in white long sleeve shirt and black pants

Every man has to learn the points of the compass again as often as he awakes, whether from sleep or any abstraction.


Quote: When a man's conscience and the laws clash, it is his conscience that he must follow. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of desert grassland

When a man's conscience and the laws clash, it is his conscience that he must follow.


Quote: I believe in the forest, and in the meadow, and in the night in which the corn grows. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of pink and green flower painting

I believe in the forest, and in the meadow, and in the night in which the corn grows.


Quote: As far as I have heard or observed, the principal object is, not that mankind may be well and honestly clad, but, unquestionably, that corporations may be enriched. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of yellow wallpaper

As far as I have heard or observed, the principal object is, not that mankind may be well and honestly clad, but, unquestionably, that corporations may be enriched.


Quote: Every man is tasked to make his life, even in its details, worthy of the contemplation of his most elevated and critical hour. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of green trees on body of water during daytime

Every man is tasked to make his life, even in its details, worthy of the contemplation of his most elevated and critical hour.


Quote: They take great pride in making their dinner cost much; I take my pride in making my dinner cost so little. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of butterfly perched on flower

They take great pride in making their dinner cost much; I take my pride in making my dinner cost so little.


Quote: The light which puts out our eyes is darkness to us. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of river painting

The light which puts out our eyes is darkness to us.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

The light which puts out our eyes is darkness to us. Only that day dawns to which we are awake. There is more day to dawn. The sun is but a morning star.


Quote: Wealth cannot purchase any great private solace or convenience. Riches are only the means of sociality. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of red flowers under the blue sky

Wealth cannot purchase any great private solace or convenience. Riches are only the means of sociality.


Quote: I am a citizen of the world first, and of this country at a later and more convenient hour. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of man and woman holding hand while walking on bridge

I am a citizen of the world first, and of this country at a later and more convenient hour.


Quote: This is a delicious evening, when the whole body is one sense, and imbibes delight through every pore. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of palm tree under orange sky

This is a delicious evening, when the whole body is one sense, and imbibes delight through every pore.


Quote: Most people dread finding out when they come to die that they have never really lived. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of closeup photo of turned-on blue and white laptop computer

Most people dread finding out when they come to die that they have never really lived.


Quote: It is said that some Western steamers can run on a heavy dew, whence we can imagine what a canoe may do. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of yellow flower

It is said that some Western steamers can run on a heavy dew, whence we can imagine what a canoe may do.


Quote: A journal, is a book that shall contain a record of all your joy, your ecstasy, what you are grateful for. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of brown hedgehog

A journal, is a book that shall contain a record of all your joy, your ecstasy, what you are grateful for.


Quote: Every man must walk to the beat of his own drummer. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of man hugging woman wall painting

Every man must walk to the beat of his own drummer.


Quote: Where there is not discernment, the behavior even of the purest soul may in effect amount to coarseness. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of time lapse photography of lightning during storm

Where there is not discernment, the behavior even of the purest soul may in effect amount to coarseness.


Quote: An efficient and valuable man does what he can, whether the community pay him for it or not. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of close-up photography of heart shaped fairy lite on brown sand

An efficient and valuable man does what he can, whether the community pay him for it or not.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

An efficient and valuable man does what he can, whether the community pay him for it or not. The inefficient offer their inefficiency to the highest bidder, and are forever expecting to be put into office. One would suppose that they were rarely disappointed.


Quote: The broadest and most prevalent error requires the most disinterested virtue to sustain it. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of forest trees photograph

The broadest and most prevalent error requires the most disinterested virtue to sustain it.


Quote: Birds do not sing in caves, nor do doves cherish their innocence in dovecots. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of brown grass field during daytime

Birds do not sing in caves, nor do doves cherish their innocence in dovecots.


Quote: Do not despair of your life. You have force enough to overcome your obstacles. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of yellow flower in green grass field

Do not despair of your life. You have force enough to overcome your obstacles.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

Do not despair of life. You have no doubt force enough to overcome your obstacles. Think of the fox prowling through wood and field in a winter night for something to satisfy his hunger. Notwithstanding cold and the hounds and traps, his race survives. I do not believe any of them ever committed suicide.


Quote: What is the use of going right over the old track again? There is an adder in the path which your own feet have worn. You must make tracks into the Unknown. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of aerial photography of pine trees with mist

What is the use of going right over the old track again? There is an adder in the path which your own feet have worn. You must make tracks into the Unknown.


Quote: Who shall say what prospect life offers to another? Could a greater miracle take place than for us to look through each other's eyes for an instant? by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of aerial photography of trees on mountain

Who shall say what prospect life offers to another? Could a greater miracle take place than for us to look through each other's eyes for an instant?


Quote: Man emulates earth Earth emulates heaven Heaven emulates the Way The way emulates nature. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of yellow butterfly on pink flowers

Man emulates earth Earth emulates heaven Heaven emulates the Way The way emulates nature.


Quote: Endeavor to live the life you have imagined. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of light bulb lit against dark background

Endeavor to live the life you have imagined.


Quote: He who rides and keeps the beaten track studies the fences chiefly. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of cloudy sky

He who rides and keeps the beaten track studies the fences chiefly.


Quote: The frontiers are not east or west, north or south, but wherever a man fronts a fact. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of turned on gray laptop computer

The frontiers are not east or west, north or south, but wherever a man fronts a fact.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

The frontiers are not east or west, north or south; but wherever a man fronts a fact, though that fact be a neighbor, there is an unsettled wilderness between him and Canada, between him and the setting sun, or, farther still, between him and it. Let him build himself a log house with the bark on where he is, fronting it, and wage there an Old French war for seven or seventy years, with Indians and Rangers, or whatever else may come between him and the reality, and save his scalp if he can.


Quote: One is wise to cultivate the tree that bears fruit in our soul. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of low angle photo of starry night

One is wise to cultivate the tree that bears fruit in our soul.


Quote: As they say in geology, time never fails, there is always enough of it, so I may say, criticism never fails. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of green ceramic mug beside book

As they say in geology, time never fails, there is always enough of it, so I may say, criticism never fails.


Quote: Insane!... Ask the tyrant who is his most dangerous foe, the sane man or the insane? by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of woman in striped shirt sitting on bed while writing

Insane!... Ask the tyrant who is his most dangerous foe, the sane man or the insane?


Quote: Yet we must try the harder, the less the prospect of success. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of aerial view of gray building on brown sand

Yet we must try the harder, the less the prospect of success.


Quote: How can we expect a harvest of thought who have not had a seedtime of character? by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of sunset

How can we expect a harvest of thought who have not had a seedtime of character?


Quote: Commonly men will only be brave as their fathers were brave, or timid. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of close shot of yellow flowers

Commonly men will only be brave as their fathers were brave, or timid.


Quote: The greater number of men are merely corporals. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of brown trees under blue sky during daytime

The greater number of men are merely corporals.


Quote: The higher the mountain on which you stand, the less change in the prospect from year to year, from age to age. Above a certain height there is no change. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of foggy mountains

The higher the mountain on which you stand, the less change in the prospect from year to year, from age to age. Above a certain height there is no change.


Quote: The highest condition of art is artlessness. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of man in gray sweater carrying woman in black jacket

The highest condition of art is artlessness.


Quote: We cannot well do without our sins; they are the highway of our virtue. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of soldiers on field at daytime

We cannot well do without our sins; they are the highway of our virtue.


Quote: I thought, as I have my living to get, and have not eaten today, that I might go a- fishing. That's the true industry for poets. It is the only trade I have learned. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of red textile on brown wooden table

I thought, as I have my living to get, and have not eaten today, that I might go a- fishing. That's the true industry for poets. It is the only trade I have learned.


Quote: I have learned that even the smallest house can be a home. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of silhouette of mountain during sunset

I have learned that even the smallest house can be a home.


Quote: Love is no individual's experience; and though we are imperfect mediums, it does not partake of our imperfection; though we are finite, it is infinite and eternal. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of white boat on sea under white sky during daytime

Love is no individual's experience; and though we are imperfect mediums, it does not partake of our imperfection; though we are finite, it is infinite and eternal.


Quote: When will the world learn that a million men are of no importance compared with one man? by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of close-up photography of heart shaped fairy lite on brown sand

When will the world learn that a million men are of no importance compared with one man?


Quote: When the true criminals are running around free, the only honorable place for a decent human being is in prisons. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of green trees on body of water during daytime

When the true criminals are running around free, the only honorable place for a decent human being is in prisons.


Quote: Methinks my own soul must be a bright invisible green. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of cat with flower

Methinks my own soul must be a bright invisible green.


Quote: Every man should stand for a force which is perfectly irresistible. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of person wearing gold and silver round analog watch

Every man should stand for a force which is perfectly irresistible.


Quote: No man with a genius for legislation has appeared in America. They are rare in the history of the world. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of Arizona landscape

No man with a genius for legislation has appeared in America. They are rare in the history of the world.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

No man with a genius for legislation has appeared in America. They are rare in the history of the world. There are orators, politicians, and eloquent men, by the thousand; but the speaker has not yet opened his mouth to speak who is capable of settling the much-vexed questions of the day. We love eloquence for its own sake, and not for any truth which it may utter, or any heroism it may inspire. Our legislators have not yet learned the comparative value of free trade and of freedom, of union, and of rectitude, to a nation.


Quote: Trade and commerce, if they were not made of Indian rubber, would never manage to bounce over the obstacles which legislators are continually putting in their way. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of desert under blue skies

Trade and commerce, if they were not made of Indian rubber, would never manage to bounce over the obstacles which legislators are continually putting in their way.


Quote: Pity the man who has a character to support -- it is worse than a large family -- he is silent poor indeed. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of person wearing orange and gray Nike shoes walking on gray concrete stairs

Pity the man who has a character to support -- it is worse than a large family -- he is silent poor indeed.


Quote: We are happy in proportion to the things we can do without. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of bare tree on mountain during sunset

We are happy in proportion to the things we can do without.


Quote: Economy is a subject which admits of being treated with levity, but it cannot so be disposed of. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of assorted-color kittens

Economy is a subject which admits of being treated with levity, but it cannot so be disposed of.


Quote: With wisdom we shall learn liberality. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of rocks on sea side at daytime

With wisdom we shall learn liberality.


Quote: The same soil is good for men and for trees. A man's health requires as many acres of meadow to his prospect as his farm does loads of muck. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of low angle photography of drop lights

The same soil is good for men and for trees. A man's health requires as many acres of meadow to his prospect as his farm does loads of muck.


Quote: We must have infinite faith in each other. If we have not, we must never let it leak out that we have not. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of island during daytime

We must have infinite faith in each other. If we have not, we must never let it leak out that we have not.


Quote: Friendship is evanescent in every man's experience, and remembered like heat lightning in past summers. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of green and white bird on black wire during daytime

Friendship is evanescent in every man's experience, and remembered like heat lightning in past summers.


Quote: There can be no very black melancholy to him who lives in the midst of Nature and has his senses still. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of shallow focus photography of bee on flower

There can be no very black melancholy to him who lives in the midst of Nature and has his senses still.


Quote: The progress from an absolute to a limited monarchy, from a limited monarchy to a democracy, is a progress toward a true respect for the individual. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of green and brown plant on white wall

The progress from an absolute to a limited monarchy, from a limited monarchy to a democracy, is a progress toward a true respect for the individual.


Quote: Nothing is so much to be feared as fear. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of 3 women standing on green grass field under blue sky during daytime

Nothing is so much to be feared as fear.


Quote: The poet who walks by moonlight is conscious of a tide in his thought which is to be referred to lunar influence. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of time lapse photography of lightning during storm

The poet who walks by moonlight is conscious of a tide in his thought which is to be referred to lunar influence.


Quote: It is no more dusky in ordinary nights than our mind's habitual atmosphere, and the moonlight is as bright as our most illuminatedmoments are. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of rocky mountain

It is no more dusky in ordinary nights than our mind's habitual atmosphere, and the moonlight is as bright as our most illuminatedmoments are.


Quote: How shall we account for our pursuits, if they are original? We get the language with which to describe our various lives out of acommon mint. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of closed white painted door with exit signage

How shall we account for our pursuits, if they are original? We get the language with which to describe our various lives out of acommon mint.


Quote: Oh, one world at a time! by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of grassland

Oh, one world at a time!


Quote: Man is an animal who more than any other can adapt himself to all climates and circumstances. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of white and black satellite dish on brown field during night time

Man is an animal who more than any other can adapt himself to all climates and circumstances.


Quote: I am not responsible for the successful working of the machinery of society. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of sunset

I am not responsible for the successful working of the machinery of society.


Quote: The language of Friendship is not words, but meanings. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of Russian blue cat wearing yellow sunglasses

The language of Friendship is not words, but meanings.


Quote: Man cannot afford to be a naturalist, to look at Nature directly, but only with the side of his eye. He must look through and beyond her. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of green leaf in close up photography

Man cannot afford to be a naturalist, to look at Nature directly, but only with the side of his eye. He must look through and beyond her.


Quote: At present our only true names are nicknames. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of person holding 10 us dollar bill

At present our only true names are nicknames.


Quote: The child should have the advantage of ignorance as well as of knowledge, and is fortunate if he gets his share of neglect and exposure. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of white and brown cat lying on brown wooden floor

The child should have the advantage of ignorance as well as of knowledge, and is fortunate if he gets his share of neglect and exposure.


Quote: Poetry is the mysticism of mankind. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of woman hugging other woman while smiling at beach

Poetry is the mysticism of mankind.


Quote: If the fairest features of the landscape are to be named after men, let them be the noblest and worthiest men alone. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of woman signing on white printer paper beside woman about to touch the documents

If the fairest features of the landscape are to be named after men, let them be the noblest and worthiest men alone.


Quote: Even in our democratic New England towns the accidental possession of wealth, and its manifestation in dress and equipage alone, obtain for the possessor almost universal respect. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of seashore during golden hour

Even in our democratic New England towns the accidental possession of wealth, and its manifestation in dress and equipage alone, obtain for the possessor almost universal respect.


Quote: How many a man has dated a new era in his life from the reading of a book! by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of cute dog on street night scene wallpaper

How many a man has dated a new era in his life from the reading of a book!


Quote: Color, which is the poet's wealth, is so expensive that most take to mere outline sketches and become men of science. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of married couple walking in field wallpaper

Color, which is the poet's wealth, is so expensive that most take to mere outline sketches and become men of science.


Quote: I learned to regard man as an inhabitant, or a part and parcel of nature, rather than a member of society. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of photography of white wall lot

I learned to regard man as an inhabitant, or a part and parcel of nature, rather than a member of society.


Quote: Many old people receive pensions for no other reason, it seems to me, but as a compensation for having lived a long time ago. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of person holding magnifying glass near desk globe

Many old people receive pensions for no other reason, it seems to me, but as a compensation for having lived a long time ago.


Quote: Be as the sailor who keeps the polestar in his eye. By so doing we may not arrive at our port within a calculable period, but we will maintain a true course. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of man standing on cliff under white sky

Be as the sailor who keeps the polestar in his eye. By so doing we may not arrive at our port within a calculable period, but we will maintain a true course.


Quote: For my part, I could easily do without the post-office. I think that there are very few important communications made through it. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of orange rose in bloom close up photo

For my part, I could easily do without the post-office. I think that there are very few important communications made through it.


Quote: The highest law gives a thing to him who can use it. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of low angle photography of green and brown tree

The highest law gives a thing to him who can use it.


Quote: I do not see why the schoolmaster should be taxed to support the priest, and not the priest the schoolmaster. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of leafless tree

I do not see why the schoolmaster should be taxed to support the priest, and not the priest the schoolmaster.


Quote: The true finish is the work of time, and the use to which a thing is put. The elements are still polishing the pyramids. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of grey hlalway

The true finish is the work of time, and the use to which a thing is put. The elements are still polishing the pyramids.


Quote: The oldest, wisest politician grows not more human so, but is merely a gray wharf rat at last. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of brown rock formation

The oldest, wisest politician grows not more human so, but is merely a gray wharf rat at last.


Quote: Man's moral nature is a riddle which only eternity can solve. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of short-coated brown and white puppy sitting on floor

Man's moral nature is a riddle which only eternity can solve.


Quote: Many men walk by day; few walk by night. It is a different season. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of person surfing on blue sea during daytime

Many men walk by day; few walk by night. It is a different season.


Quote: The mass of men are very easily imposed on. They have their runways in which they always travel, and are sure to fall into any pit or box-trap set therein. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of two white and brown dogs

The mass of men are very easily imposed on. They have their runways in which they always travel, and are sure to fall into any pit or box-trap set therein.


Quote: Routine is a ground to stand on, a wall to retreat to; we cannot draw on our boots without bracing ourselves against it. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of woman stretching

Routine is a ground to stand on, a wall to retreat to; we cannot draw on our boots without bracing ourselves against it.


Quote: From exertion come wisdom and purity; from sloth ignorance and sensuality. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of black and white window illustration

From exertion come wisdom and purity; from sloth ignorance and sensuality.


Quote: There are more consequences to a shipwreck than the underwriters notice. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of cute dog on street night scene wallpaper

There are more consequences to a shipwreck than the underwriters notice.


Quote: If I ever see more clearly at one time than at another, the medium through which I see is clearer. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of green trees under white sky during daytime

If I ever see more clearly at one time than at another, the medium through which I see is clearer.


Quote: Every man will be a poet if he can; otherwise a philosopher or man of science. This proves the superiority of the poet. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of short-beak red bird on tree

Every man will be a poet if he can; otherwise a philosopher or man of science. This proves the superiority of the poet.


Quote: Why level downward to our dullest perception always, and praise that as common sense? The commonest sense is the sense of men asleep, which they express by snoring. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of white wall paint beside white wall

Why level downward to our dullest perception always, and praise that as common sense? The commonest sense is the sense of men asleep, which they express by snoring.


Quote: Consider what stuff history is made of, -- that for the most part it is merely a story agreed on by posterity. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of time lapse photography of lightning during storm

Consider what stuff history is made of, -- that for the most part it is merely a story agreed on by posterity.


Quote: In the summer we lay up a stock of experiences for the winter, as the squirrel of nuts?something for conversation in winter evenings. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of white and brown cat lying on brown wooden floor

In the summer we lay up a stock of experiences for the winter, as the squirrel of nuts?something for conversation in winter evenings.


Quote: The imagination, give it the least license, dives deeper and soars higher than Nature goes. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of raccoon walking on lawn grass

The imagination, give it the least license, dives deeper and soars higher than Nature goes.


Quote: Let things alone; let them weigh what they will; let them soar or fall. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of water color palette on white surface

Let things alone; let them weigh what they will; let them soar or fall.


Quote: The great poem must have the stamp of greatness as well as its essence. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of cloudy sky

The great poem must have the stamp of greatness as well as its essence.


Quote: It is the man determines what is said, not the words. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of men walking on road

It is the man determines what is said, not the words.


Quote: Are you in want of amusement nowadays? Then play a little at the game of getting a living. There was never anything equal to it. Do it temperately, though, and don't sweat. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of human hand

Are you in want of amusement nowadays? Then play a little at the game of getting a living. There was never anything equal to it. Do it temperately, though, and don't sweat.


Quote: I have learned that the swiftest traveller is he that goes afoot. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of woman in gray knit sweater covering her face with her hand

I have learned that the swiftest traveller is he that goes afoot.


Quote: Truth, Goodness, Beauty -- those celestial thrins,Continually are born; e'en now the Universe,With thousand throats, and eke with greener smiles,Its joy confesses at their recent birth. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of red flower in shallow focus lens

Truth, Goodness, Beauty -- those celestial thrins,Continually are born; e'en now the Universe,With thousand throats, and eke with greener smiles,Its joy confesses at their recent birth.


Quote: We can never have enough of nature. We must be refreshed by the sight of inexhaustible vigor. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of person in black long sleeve shirt using brown and white rotary phone

We can never have enough of nature. We must be refreshed by the sight of inexhaustible vigor.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

We can never have enough of nature. We must be refreshed by the sight of inexhaustible vigor, vast and titanic features, the sea-coast with its wrecks, the wilderness with its living and its decaying trees, the thunder-cloud, and the rain.


Quote: Open all your pores and bathe in all the tides of nature, in all her streams and oceans, at all seasons. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of leafless tree

Open all your pores and bathe in all the tides of nature, in all her streams and oceans, at all seasons.


Quote: We fritter away our energy and creativity ...
 we get bogged down in the thick of thin things. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of person in black long sleeve shirt using brown and white rotary phone

We fritter away our energy and creativity ...
we get bogged down in the thick of thin things.


Quote: I think that no experience which I have today comes up to, or is comparable with, the experiences of my boyhood. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of brown and white corgi puppy

I think that no experience which I have today comes up to, or is comparable with, the experiences of my boyhood.


Quote: Truth is always paradoxical. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of selective focus photography of stones on sand

Truth is always paradoxical.


Quote: If you would feel the full force of a tempest, take up your residence on the top of Mount Washington, or at the Highland Light, inTruro. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of closed white painted door with exit signage

If you would feel the full force of a tempest, take up your residence on the top of Mount Washington, or at the Highland Light, inTruro.


Quote: A man's whole life is taxed for the least thing well done. It is its net result. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of pink flower with green stem

A man's whole life is taxed for the least thing well done. It is its net result.


Quote: If common sense had been consulted, how many marriages would never have taken place; if uncommon or divine sense, how few marriages such as we witness would ever have taken place! by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of white swan on blue sea during daytime

If common sense had been consulted, how many marriages would never have taken place; if uncommon or divine sense, how few marriages such as we witness would ever have taken place!


Quote: It takes a man of genius to travel in his own country, in his native village; to make any progress between his door and his gate. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of woman in white and black striped shirt standing on yellow sunflower field during daytime

It takes a man of genius to travel in his own country, in his native village; to make any progress between his door and his gate.


Quote: The movements of the eyes express the perpetual and unconscious courtesy of the parties. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of closeup photo of turned-on blue and white laptop computer

The movements of the eyes express the perpetual and unconscious courtesy of the parties.


Quote: In the winter, warmth stands for all virtue. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of brown and black tiger near body of water

In the winter, warmth stands for all virtue.


Quote: When I would go a-visiting, I find that I go off the fashionable street, -- not being inclined to change my dress, -- to where man meets man, and not polished shoe meets shoe. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of brown tabby kitten

When I would go a-visiting, I find that I go off the fashionable street, -- not being inclined to change my dress, -- to where man meets man, and not polished shoe meets shoe.


Quote: As polishing expresses the vein in marble, and grain in wood, so music brings out what of heroic lurks anywhere. The hero is the sole patron of music. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of black puppy looking at cupcakes

As polishing expresses the vein in marble, and grain in wood, so music brings out what of heroic lurks anywhere. The hero is the sole patron of music.


Quote: If you look over a list of medicinal recipes in vogue in the last century, how foolish and useless they are seen to be! And yet we use equally absurd ones with faith today. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of brown wallpaper

If you look over a list of medicinal recipes in vogue in the last century, how foolish and useless they are seen to be! And yet we use equally absurd ones with faith today.


Quote: We are accustomed to say, that the mass of men are unprepared; but improvement is slow, because the few are not materially wiser or better than the many. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of solid background

We are accustomed to say, that the mass of men are unprepared; but improvement is slow, because the few are not materially wiser or better than the many.


Quote: I should consider it a greater success to interest one wise and earnest soul, than a million unwise and frivolous. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of green trees under white sky during daytime

I should consider it a greater success to interest one wise and earnest soul, than a million unwise and frivolous.


Quote: Good deeds are no less good because their object is unworthy. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of blue sky with stars during night time

Good deeds are no less good because their object is unworthy.


Quote: In Literature it is only the wild that attracts us. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of green fruit in macro lens photography

In Literature it is only the wild that attracts us.


Quote: In short, all good things are wild and free. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of green trees on forest during daytime

In short, all good things are wild and free.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

In short, all good things are wild and free. There is something in a strain of music, whether produced by an instrument or by the human voice,--take the sound of a bugle in a summer night, for instance,--which by its wildness, to speak without satire, reminds me of the cries emitted by wild beasts in their native forests. It is so much of their wildness as I can understand. Give me for my friends and neighbors wild men, not tame ones. The wildness of the savage is but a faint symbol of the awful ferity with which good men and lovers meet.


Quote: We need the tonic of wildness. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of gold round coins on brown wooden table

We need the tonic of wildness.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

We need the tonic of wildness…At the same time that we are earnest to explore and learn all things, we require that all things be mysterious and unexplorable, that land and sea be indefinitely wild, unsurveyed and unfathomed by us because unfathomable. We can never have enough of nature.


Quote: Life consists with wildness. The most alive is the wildest. Not yet subdued to man, its presence refreshes him. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of time lapse photography of lightning during storm

Life consists with wildness. The most alive is the wildest. Not yet subdued to man, its presence refreshes him.


Quote: What we call wildness is a civilization other than our own. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of woman in white and black stripe long sleeve shirt standing beside brown concrete building during daytime

What we call wildness is a civilization other than our own.


Quote: Give me a Wildness whose glance no civilization can endure. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of landscape photography of road at savannah

Give me a Wildness whose glance no civilization can endure.


Quote: The West of which I speak is but another name for the Wild, and what I have been preparing to say is, that in Wildness is the preservation of the World. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of white

The West of which I speak is but another name for the Wild, and what I have been preparing to say is, that in Wildness is the preservation of the World.


Quote: Expect no trivial truth from me, unless I am on the witness- stand. I will come as near to lying as you can drive a coach and four. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of green trees under white sky during daytime

Expect no trivial truth from me, unless I am on the witness- stand. I will come as near to lying as you can drive a coach and four.


Quote: Far from New England's blustering shore,New England's worm her hulk shall bore,And sink her in the Indian seas,Twine, wine, and hides, and China teas. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of cute labradoron rocks wallpaper

Far from New England's blustering shore,New England's worm her hulk shall bore,And sink her in the Indian seas,Twine, wine, and hides, and China teas.


Quote: Why will we be imposed on by antiquity? by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of three people paddling in canoe

Why will we be imposed on by antiquity?


Quote: English sense has toiled, but Hindoo wisdom never perspired. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of green pine trees near mountain under blue sky during daytime

English sense has toiled, but Hindoo wisdom never perspired.


Quote: The sea, vast and wild as it is, bears thus the waste and wrecks of human art to its remotest shore. There is no telling what it may not vomit up. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of purple petaled flower on gray surface

The sea, vast and wild as it is, bears thus the waste and wrecks of human art to its remotest shore. There is no telling what it may not vomit up.


Quote: I have found all things thus far, persons and inanimate matter, elements and seasons, strangely adapted to my resources. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of pink and red flowers

I have found all things thus far, persons and inanimate matter, elements and seasons, strangely adapted to my resources.


Quote: The rich man is always sold to the institution which makes him rich. Absolutely speaking, the more money, the less virtue. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of silhouette photo of mountain during night time

The rich man is always sold to the institution which makes him rich. Absolutely speaking, the more money, the less virtue.


Quote: If however the law is so promulgated that it of necessity makes you an agent of injustices against another, then I say to you ... break the law. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of panoramic photography of mountains

If however the law is so promulgated that it of necessity makes you an agent of injustices against another, then I say to you ... break the law.


Quote: The only obligation which I have a right to assume is to do at any time what I think right. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of Close-up of a white line on green grass in a soccer field

The only obligation which I have a right to assume is to do at any time what I think right.


Quote: Any man more right than his neighbors constitutes a majority of one already. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of sunflower field during daytime

Any man more right than his neighbors constitutes a majority of one already.


Quote: By a conscious effort of the mind we can stand aloof from actions and their consequences; and all things, good and bad, go by us like a torrent. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of black mountain under blue sky during night time

By a conscious effort of the mind we can stand aloof from actions and their consequences; and all things, good and bad, go by us like a torrent.


Quote: I am amused to see from my window here how busily a man has divided and staked off his domain. God must smile at his puny fences running hither and thither everywhere over the land. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of woman snorkeling

I am amused to see from my window here how busily a man has divided and staked off his domain. God must smile at his puny fences running hither and thither everywhere over the land.


Quote: The most attractive sentences are not perhaps the wisest, but the surest and soundest. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of shallow focus photography of brown cat

The most attractive sentences are not perhaps the wisest, but the surest and soundest.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

The most attractive sentences are, perhaps, not the wisest, but the surest and roundest. They are spoken firmly and conclusively,as if the speaker had a right to know what he says, and if not wise, they have at least been well learned.


Quote: The whole of the day should not be daytime; there should be one hour, if not more, which the day did not bring forth. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of woman in blue denim jacket with red rose on ear

The whole of the day should not be daytime; there should be one hour, if not more, which the day did not bring forth.


Quote: The Slothful do not have the time to become virtuous or despicable. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of sunset forest

The Slothful do not have the time to become virtuous or despicable.


Quote: In their daily life, all are braver than they know. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of three people paddling in canoe

In their daily life, all are braver than they know.


Quote: The most difficult thing to understand during conversation is silence. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of close-up of lighted candle

The most difficult thing to understand during conversation is silence.


Quote: I came to love my rows, my beans, though so many more than I wanted. They attached me to the earth, and so I got strength like Antaeus. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of person holding white book

I came to love my rows, my beans, though so many more than I wanted. They attached me to the earth, and so I got strength like Antaeus.


Quote: A simple and independent mind does not toil at the bidding of any prince. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of adult yellow Labrador retriever inside black plastic basin

A simple and independent mind does not toil at the bidding of any prince.


Quote: Today...the bluebirds, old and young, have revisited their box, as if they would fain repeat the summer without intervention of winter, if Nature would let them. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of woman doing yoga on rock platform next to body of water

Today...the bluebirds, old and young, have revisited their box, as if they would fain repeat the summer without intervention of winter, if Nature would let them.


Quote: What is chastity? How shall a man know if he is chaste? He shall not know it. We have heard of this virtue, but we know not what it is. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of Vincent Van Gogh self portrait painting on wall

What is chastity? How shall a man know if he is chaste? He shall not know it. We have heard of this virtue, but we know not what it is.


Quote: If you would be chaste, you must be temperate. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of pink and white flowers on white surface

If you would be chaste, you must be temperate.


Quote: We make needless ado about capital punishment, -- taking lives, when there is no life to take. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of adult short-coated brown dog near green leaf plant

We make needless ado about capital punishment, -- taking lives, when there is no life to take.


Quote: This world is a place of business. What an infinite bustle! by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of couple kissing beside seashore

This world is a place of business. What an infinite bustle!

Longer Version/[Notes]:

This world is a place of business. What an infinite bustle! I am awaked almost every night by the panting of the locomotive. It interrupts my dreams. There is no sabbath. It would be glorious to see mankind at leisure for once. It is nothing but work, work, work. I cannot easily buy a blank-book to write thoughts in; they are commonly ruled for dollars and cents. An Irishman, seeing me making a minute in the fields, took it for granted that I was calculating my wages. If a man was tossed out of a window when an infant, and so made a cripple for life, or scared out of his wits by the Indians, it is regretted chiefly because he was thus incapacitated for—business! I think that there is nothing, not even crime, more opposed to poetry, to philosophy, ay, to life itself, than this incessant business.


Quote: I know very well what Goethe meant when he said that he never had a chagrin but he made a poem out of it. I have altogether too much patience of this kind. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of woman carrying baby while walking

I know very well what Goethe meant when he said that he never had a chagrin but he made a poem out of it. I have altogether too much patience of this kind.


Quote: A man may acquire a taste for wine or brandy, and so lose his love for water, but should we not pity him. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of aerial view of trees

A man may acquire a taste for wine or brandy, and so lose his love for water, but should we not pity him.


Quote: The books for young people say a great deal about the selection of Friends; it is because they really have nothing to say about Friends. They mean associates and confidants merely. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of person holding sunflower

The books for young people say a great deal about the selection of Friends; it is because they really have nothing to say about Friends. They mean associates and confidants merely.


Quote: The inhabitants of Canada appeared to be suffering between two fires, -- the soldiery and the priesthood. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of yellow, orange, red, green, and blue abstract painting

The inhabitants of Canada appeared to be suffering between two fires, -- the soldiery and the priesthood.


Quote: It is remarkable that among all the preachers there are so few moral teachers. The prophets are employed in excusing the ways of men. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of gray cactus plant on white pot

It is remarkable that among all the preachers there are so few moral teachers. The prophets are employed in excusing the ways of men.


Quote: The sort of morality which the priests inculcate is a very subtle policy, far finer than the politicians', and the world is very successfully ruled by them as the policemen. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of silhouette of flower during sunset

The sort of morality which the priests inculcate is a very subtle policy, far finer than the politicians', and the world is very successfully ruled by them as the policemen.


Quote: A healthy man, indeed, is the complement of the seasons, and in winter, summer is in his heart. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of person in black long sleeve shirt using brown and white rotary phone

A healthy man, indeed, is the complement of the seasons, and in winter, summer is in his heart.


Quote: I have found it to be the most serious objection to coarse labors long continued, that they compelled me to eat and drink coarsely also. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of adult black puppy in yellow raincoat

I have found it to be the most serious objection to coarse labors long continued, that they compelled me to eat and drink coarsely also.


Quote: The theories and speculations of men concern us more than their puny accomplishment. It is with a certain coldness and languor that we loiter about the actual and so-called practical. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of white petaled flowers beside gray wall

The theories and speculations of men concern us more than their puny accomplishment. It is with a certain coldness and languor that we loiter about the actual and so-called practical.


Quote: Knowledge is to be acquired only by a corresponding experience. How can we know what we are told merely? Each man can interpret another's experience only by his own. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of yellow painted wall

Knowledge is to be acquired only by a corresponding experience. How can we know what we are told merely? Each man can interpret another's experience only by his own.


Quote: I would remind my countrymen that they are to be men first, and Americans only at a late and convenient hour. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of man in black jacket and blue denim jeans running on road during daytime

I would remind my countrymen that they are to be men first, and Americans only at a late and convenient hour.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

I would remind my countrymen, that they are to be men first, and Americans only at a late and convenient hour. No matter how valuable law may be to protect your property, even to keep soul and body together, if it do not keep you and humanity together.


Quote: Renew thyself completely each day. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of 100 US dollar banknote

Renew thyself completely each day.


Quote: What wealth is it to have such friends that we cannot think of them without elevation! by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of pink tulip flower

What wealth is it to have such friends that we cannot think of them without elevation!


Quote: The forests are held cheap after the white pine has been culled out; and the explorers and hunters pray for rain only to clear theatmosphere of smoke. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of man standing on cliff

The forests are held cheap after the white pine has been culled out; and the explorers and hunters pray for rain only to clear theatmosphere of smoke.


Quote: While my friend was my friend, he flattered me, and I never heard the truth from him. When he became my enemy, he shot it to me on a poisoned arrow. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of backdrop orange

While my friend was my friend, he flattered me, and I never heard the truth from him. When he became my enemy, he shot it to me on a poisoned arrow.


Quote: Most are engaged in business the greater part of their lives, because the soul abhors a vacuum and they have not discovered any continuous employment for man's nobler faculties. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of human hand

Most are engaged in business the greater part of their lives, because the soul abhors a vacuum and they have not discovered any continuous employment for man's nobler faculties.


Quote: It is very rare that you meet with obstacles in this world, which the humblest man has not faculties to surmount. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of silhouette of trees during nighttime

It is very rare that you meet with obstacles in this world, which the humblest man has not faculties to surmount.


Quote: It is good even to be a fisherman in summer and in winter. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of silhouette of man and woman kissing during sunset

It is good even to be a fisherman in summer and in winter.


Quote: It will always be found that one flourishing institution exists and battens on another mouldering one. The Present itself is parasitic to this extent. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of Arizona landscape

It will always be found that one flourishing institution exists and battens on another mouldering one. The Present itself is parasitic to this extent.


Quote: The earth I tread on is not a dead inert mass. It is a body, has a spirit; is organic and fluid to the influence of its spirit and to whatever particle of the spirit is in me. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of silhouette of flower during sunset

The earth I tread on is not a dead inert mass. It is a body, has a spirit; is organic and fluid to the influence of its spirit and to whatever particle of the spirit is in me.


Quote: It is impossible to give a soldier a good education without making him a deserter. His natural foe is the government that drills him. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of gray scale photo of woman face

It is impossible to give a soldier a good education without making him a deserter. His natural foe is the government that drills him.


Quote: Anyone in a free society where the laws are unjust has an obligation to break the law. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of person typing on Apple Cordless Keyboard

Anyone in a free society where the laws are unjust has an obligation to break the law.


Quote: As every season seems best to us in its turn, so the coming in of spring is like the creation of Cosmos out of Chaos and the realization of the Golden Age. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of red and white led lighted heart decor

As every season seems best to us in its turn, so the coming in of spring is like the creation of Cosmos out of Chaos and the realization of the Golden Age.


Quote: The whole body of what is now called moral or ethical truth existed in the golden age as abstract science. Or, if we prefer, we may say that the laws of Nature are the purest morality. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of ocean

The whole body of what is now called moral or ethical truth existed in the golden age as abstract science. Or, if we prefer, we may say that the laws of Nature are the purest morality.


Quote: He who receives an injury is to some extent an accomplice of the wrong-doer. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of person holding gray leaf

He who receives an injury is to some extent an accomplice of the wrong-doer.


Quote: In dreams we see ourselves naked and acting out our real characters, even more clearly than we see others awake. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of single pink tulip wallpaper

In dreams we see ourselves naked and acting out our real characters, even more clearly than we see others awake.


Quote: Health requires this relaxation, this aimless life. This life in the present. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of blue and black ball on blue and white checkered textile

Health requires this relaxation, this aimless life. This life in the present.


Quote: All perception of truth is the detection of an analogy. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of couple sitting on the field facing the city

All perception of truth is the detection of an analogy.


Quote: If it is necessary, omit one bridge over the river, go round a little there, and throw one arch at least over the darker gulf of ignorance which surrounds us. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of red and white led lighted heart decor

If it is necessary, omit one bridge over the river, go round a little there, and throw one arch at least over the darker gulf of ignorance which surrounds us.


Quote: Behave so the aroma of your actions may enhance the general sweetness of the atmosphere. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of landscape photo of mountain during nighttime

Behave so the aroma of your actions may enhance the general sweetness of the atmosphere.


Quote: Mathematics should be mixed not only with physics but with ethics. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of shooting star in night sky

Mathematics should be mixed not only with physics but with ethics.


Quote: It is the beauty within us that makes it possible for us to recognize the beauty around us. The question is not what you look at but what you see. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of assorted-color lear hanging decor

It is the beauty within us that makes it possible for us to recognize the beauty around us. The question is not what you look at but what you see.


Quote: It's the beauty within us that makes it possible for us to recognize the beauty around us. The question is not what you look at but what you see. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of bird on pier

It's the beauty within us that makes it possible for us to recognize the beauty around us. The question is not what you look at but what you see.


Quote: The mission of men there seems to be, like so many busy demons, to drive the forest all out of the country, from every solitary beaver swamp and mountain-side, as soon as possible. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of green leafed plant on clear glass vase filled with water

The mission of men there seems to be, like so many busy demons, to drive the forest all out of the country, from every solitary beaver swamp and mountain-side, as soon as possible.


Quote: Being a teacher is like being in jail; once it's on your record, you can never get rid of it. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of silhouette of man standing on rock while looking in sky

Being a teacher is like being in jail; once it's on your record, you can never get rid of it.


Quote: The greatest gains and values are farthest from being appreciated. We easily come to doubt if they exist. We soon forget them. They are the highest reality. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of solid background

The greatest gains and values are farthest from being appreciated. We easily come to doubt if they exist. We soon forget them. They are the highest reality.


Quote: It is not enough that we are truthful; we must cherish and carry out high purposes to be truthful about. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of body of water surrounded with plants under cloudy sky

It is not enough that we are truthful; we must cherish and carry out high purposes to be truthful about.


Quote: Invariably our best nights were those when it rained. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of green leaf tree near mountain covered by snow at daytime

Invariably our best nights were those when it rained.


Quote: There is always some accident in the best things, whether thoughts or expressions or deeds. The memorable thought, the happy expression, the admirable deed are only partly ours. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of blue and white abstract painting

There is always some accident in the best things, whether thoughts or expressions or deeds. The memorable thought, the happy expression, the admirable deed are only partly ours.


Quote: The virtue of making two blades of grass grow where only one grew before does not begin to be superhuman. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of body of water surrounded with plants under cloudy sky

The virtue of making two blades of grass grow where only one grew before does not begin to be superhuman.


Quote: If anything ail a man, so that he does not perform his functions, if he have a pain in his bowels even,- for that is the seat of sympathy,-he forthwith sets about reforming the world. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of pink rose flower

If anything ail a man, so that he does not perform his functions, if he have a pain in his bowels even,- for that is the seat of sympathy,-he forthwith sets about reforming the world.


Quote: It is in vain to dream of a wildness distant from ourselves. There is none such. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of woman in blue denim jacket leaning on man's shoulder near body of water

It is in vain to dream of a wildness distant from ourselves. There is none such.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

It is in vain to dream of a wildness distant from ourselves. There is none such. It is the bog in our brains and bowels, the primitive vigor of Nature in us, that inspires that dream. I shall never find in the wilds of Labrador a greater wildness than in some recess of Concord.


Quote: Through want of enterprise and faith men are where they are, buying and selling and spending their lives like servants. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of green and white bird on black wire during daytime

Through want of enterprise and faith men are where they are, buying and selling and spending their lives like servants.


Quote: The inhabitants of the Cape generally do not complain of their soil, but will tell you that it is good enough for them to dry their fish on. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of bird on pier

The inhabitants of the Cape generally do not complain of their soil, but will tell you that it is good enough for them to dry their fish on.


Quote: Every nail driven should be as another rivet in the machine of the universe, you carrying on the work. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of smiling woman

Every nail driven should be as another rivet in the machine of the universe, you carrying on the work.


Quote: There is a chasm between knowledge and ignorance which the arches of science can never span. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of green sports court illustration

There is a chasm between knowledge and ignorance which the arches of science can never span.


Quote: Great God, I ask thee for no meaner pelf Than that I may not disappoint myself, That in my action I may soar as high As I can now discern with this clear eye. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of Light blue to dark blue gradient

Great God, I ask thee for no meaner pelf Than that I may not disappoint myself, That in my action I may soar as high As I can now discern with this clear eye.


Quote: If you are chosen town clerk, forsooth, you cannot go to Tierra del Fuego this summer; but you may go to the land of infernal fire nevertheless. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of silhouette of man standing on seashore during sunset

If you are chosen town clerk, forsooth, you cannot go to Tierra del Fuego this summer; but you may go to the land of infernal fire nevertheless.


Quote: The fruits eaten temperately need not make us ashamed of our appetites, nor interrupt the worthiest pursuits. But put an extra condiment into your dish, and it will poison you. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of Dark purple to red to orange gradient

The fruits eaten temperately need not make us ashamed of our appetites, nor interrupt the worthiest pursuits. But put an extra condiment into your dish, and it will poison you.


Quote: We have the St. Vitus' dance, and cannot possibly keep our heads still. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of white and brown long coated small dog on green textile

We have the St. Vitus' dance, and cannot possibly keep our heads still.


Quote: The success of great scholars and thinkers is commonly a courtier-like success, not kingly, not manly. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of gray concrete surface

The success of great scholars and thinkers is commonly a courtier-like success, not kingly, not manly.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

The success of great scholars and thinkers is commonly a courtier-like success, not kingly, not manly. They make shift to live merely by conformity, practically as their fathers did, and are in no sense the progenitors of a nobler race of men.


Quote: Tough times don't last but tough people do. 
No matter how slow you go, you are still lapping everybody on the couch.
Men are born to succeed, not fail. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of white and brown cat on blue floor

Tough times don't last but tough people do.
No matter how slow you go, you are still lapping everybody on the couch.
Men are born to succeed, not fail.


Quote: If you see a man approaching you with the obvious intent of doing you good, you should run for your life. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of shallow focus photography of bee on flower

If you see a man approaching you with the obvious intent of doing you good, you should run for your life.


Quote: My soul and body have tottered along together of late, tripping and hindering one another like unpracticed Siamese twins. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of white brown and black cat on brown dried leaves

My soul and body have tottered along together of late, tripping and hindering one another like unpracticed Siamese twins.


Quote: When our life ceases to be inward and private, conversation degenerates into mere gossip. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of grayscale photography of elephant

When our life ceases to be inward and private, conversation degenerates into mere gossip.


Quote: He who cannot read is worse than deaf and blind, is yet but half alive, is still-born. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of red heart wall décor

He who cannot read is worse than deaf and blind, is yet but half alive, is still-born.


Quote: We are enabled to apprehend at all what is sublime and noble only by the perpetual instilling and drenching of the reality that surrounds us. We can never have enough of nature. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of human hand

We are enabled to apprehend at all what is sublime and noble only by the perpetual instilling and drenching of the reality that surrounds us. We can never have enough of nature.


Quote: Your richest veins don't lie nearest the surface. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of red and white heart balloons

Your richest veins don't lie nearest the surface.


Quote: The government of the world I live in was not framed, like that of Britain, in after-dinner conversations over the wine. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of green and white bird on black wire during daytime

The government of the world I live in was not framed, like that of Britain, in after-dinner conversations over the wine.


Quote: There is a difference between eating and drinking for strength and from mere gluttony. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of tilt shift lens pink fetal flowers

There is a difference between eating and drinking for strength and from mere gluttony.


Quote: Almost any mode of observation will be successful at last, for what is most wanted is method. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of silhouette photography of trees and sky

Almost any mode of observation will be successful at last, for what is most wanted is method.


Quote: It is time that we had uncommon schools, that we did not leave off our education when we begin to be men and women. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of calm body of water near alp mountains during nighttime

It is time that we had uncommon schools, that we did not leave off our education when we begin to be men and women.


Quote: Men cannot conceive of a state of things so fair that it cannot be realized. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of desert grassland

Men cannot conceive of a state of things so fair that it cannot be realized.


Quote: You only need sit still long enough in some attractive spot in the woods that all its inhabitants may exhibit themselves to you by turns. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of man and woman sitting on white bed reading book

You only need sit still long enough in some attractive spot in the woods that all its inhabitants may exhibit themselves to you by turns.


Quote: Thus men will lie on their backs, talking about the fall of man, and never make an effort to get up. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of white and blue ice in water

Thus men will lie on their backs, talking about the fall of man, and never make an effort to get up.


Quote: The fault finder will find faults even in paradise and thereby miss the joys that recognition of the positives bring. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of brown and white ceramic dog figurine

The fault finder will find faults even in paradise and thereby miss the joys that recognition of the positives bring.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

The fault-finder will find faults even in paradise. Love your life, poor as it is. You may perhaps have some pleasant, thrilling, glorious hours, even in a poor-house. The setting sun is reflected from the windows of the alms-house as brightly as from the rich man's abode; the snow melts before its door as early in the spring. I do not see but a quiet mind may live as contentedly there, and have as cheering thoughts, as in a palace.


Quote: Disobedience is the true foundation of liberty. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of toddler hugging siberian husky

Disobedience is the true foundation of liberty.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

Disobedience is the true foundation of liberty. The obedient must be slaves.


Quote: The artist and his work are not to be separated. The most willfully foolish man cannot stand aloof from his folly, but the deed and the doer together make ever one sober fact. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of silhouette of a person during sunset

The artist and his work are not to be separated. The most willfully foolish man cannot stand aloof from his folly, but the deed and the doer together make ever one sober fact.


Quote: Wealth can't buy heath, but heath can buy wealth. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of two person holding hands while standing

Wealth can't buy heath, but heath can buy wealth.


Quote: We live but a fraction of our lives. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of person doing yoga exercises

We live but a fraction of our lives.


Quote: The words which express our faith and piety are not definite; yet they are significant and fragrant like frankincense to superior natures. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of woman exercising indoors

The words which express our faith and piety are not definite; yet they are significant and fragrant like frankincense to superior natures.


Quote: The way by which you may get money almost without exception leads downward. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of man carrying woman

The way by which you may get money almost without exception leads downward.


Quote: I am sure that I never read any memorable news in a newspaper. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of silhouette of man and woman kissing under starry night

I am sure that I never read any memorable news in a newspaper.


Quote: When I think of the gold-diggers and the Mormons, the slaves and the slave-holders and the flibustiers, I naturally dream of a glorious private life. No, I am not patriotic. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of group of camels walking on desert lake at daytime

When I think of the gold-diggers and the Mormons, the slaves and the slave-holders and the flibustiers, I naturally dream of a glorious private life. No, I am not patriotic.


Quote: The bad are frequently good enough to let you see how bad they are, but the good as frequently endeavor to get between you and themselves. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of red rose in black background

The bad are frequently good enough to let you see how bad they are, but the good as frequently endeavor to get between you and themselves.


Quote: We loiter in winter while it is already spring. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of three assorted U.S. dollar banknotes

We loiter in winter while it is already spring.


Quote: I know a good woman who thinks that her son lost his life because he took to drinking water only. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of clear hour glass

I know a good woman who thinks that her son lost his life because he took to drinking water only.


Quote: Whatever is, and is not ashamed to be, is good. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of three women sitting on rock near body of water

Whatever is, and is not ashamed to be, is good.


Quote: Though the hen should sit all day, she could lay only one egg, and, besides, would not have picked up materials for another. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of wavy white wallpaper

Though the hen should sit all day, she could lay only one egg, and, besides, would not have picked up materials for another.


Quote: When we are in health, all sounds fife and drum for us; we hear the notes of music in the air, or catch its echoes dying away when we awake in the dawn. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of green leaf in close up photography

When we are in health, all sounds fife and drum for us; we hear the notes of music in the air, or catch its echoes dying away when we awake in the dawn.


Quote: Truly, our greatest blessings are very cheap. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of yellow labrador retriever puppy sitting on floor

Truly, our greatest blessings are very cheap.


Quote: Hold fast to your most indefinite, waking dream. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of toddler hugging siberian husky

Hold fast to your most indefinite, waking dream.


Quote: How many a poor immortal soul I have met well-nigh crushed and smothered under its load, creeping down the road of life, pushing before it an oversized home. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of white and blue sky during daytime

How many a poor immortal soul I have met well-nigh crushed and smothered under its load, creeping down the road of life, pushing before it an oversized home.


Quote: The devil finds work for idle hands. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of person holding fan of 100 us dollar bill

The devil finds work for idle hands.


Quote: Enemies publish themselves. They declare war. The friend never declares his love. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of orange and white kitty pink background

Enemies publish themselves. They declare war. The friend never declares his love.


Quote: So easy is it, though many housekeepers doubt it, to establish new and better customs in the place of the old. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of silhouette of man and woman facing each other during golden hour

So easy is it, though many housekeepers doubt it, to establish new and better customs in the place of the old.


Quote: I was daily intoxicated, yet no man could call me intemperate. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of person holding green plant during daytime

I was daily intoxicated, yet no man could call me intemperate.


Quote: Music never stops; it is only the listening that is intermittent. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of mixed paints in a plate

Music never stops; it is only the listening that is intermittent.


Quote: Government never furthered any enterprise but by the alacrity with which it got out of its way. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of brown and grey trees and rock formation painting

Government never furthered any enterprise but by the alacrity with which it got out of its way.


Quote: Knowledge does not come to us in details, but in flashes of light from heaven. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of yellow and blue painted wall

Knowledge does not come to us in details, but in flashes of light from heaven.


Quote: We are armed with language adequate to describe each leaf of the filed, but not to describe human character. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of white bicycle parked beside wall

We are armed with language adequate to describe each leaf of the filed, but not to describe human character.


Quote: What is commonly called friendship is only a little more honor among rogues. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of blue and white striped textile

What is commonly called friendship is only a little more honor among rogues.


Quote: I look upon England today as an old gentleman who is travelling with a great deal of baggage, trumpery which has accumulated fromlong housekeeping, which he has not the courage to burn. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of aerial view of green lake surrounded by green trees during daytime

I look upon England today as an old gentleman who is travelling with a great deal of baggage, trumpery which has accumulated fromlong housekeeping, which he has not the courage to burn.


Quote: Be it life or death, we crave only reality. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of gray and white bird on red and yellow leaves

Be it life or death, we crave only reality.


Quote: Live free, child of the mist,- and with respect to knowledge we are allchildren of the mist. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of white and red flower with green leaves

Live free, child of the mist,- and with respect to knowledge we are allchildren of the mist.


Quote: The Ethiopian cannot change his skin nor the leopard his spots. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of sunset

The Ethiopian cannot change his skin nor the leopard his spots.


Quote: How many things are now at loose ends! Who knows which way the wind will blow tomorrow? by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of black bird flying on white background

How many things are now at loose ends! Who knows which way the wind will blow tomorrow?


Quote: If the injustice is part of the necessary friction of the machine of government, let it go, let it go: perchance it will wear smooth. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of man and woman sitting on white bed reading book

If the injustice is part of the necessary friction of the machine of government, let it go, let it go: perchance it will wear smooth.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

If the injustice is part of the necessary friction of the machine of government, let it go, let it go: perchance it will wear smooth--certainly the machine will wear out… but if it is of such a nature that it requires you to be the agent of injustice to another, then I say, break the law. Let your life be a counter-friction to stop the machine. What I have to do is to see, at any rate, that I do not lend myself to the wrong which I condemn.


Quote: However mean your life is, meet it and live it. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of MacBook Pro beside plant in vase

However mean your life is, meet it and live it.

Longer Version/[Notes]:

However mean your life is, meet it and live it; do not shun it and call it hard names. It is not so bad as you are. It looks poorest when you are richest. The fault-finder will find faults even in paradise. Love your life, poor as it is. You may perhaps have some pleasant, thrilling, glorious hours, even in a poorhouse. The setting sun is reflected from the windows of the almshouse as brightly as from the rich man's abode; the snow melts before its door as early in the spring. I do not see but a quiet mind may live as contentedly there, and have as cheering thoughts, as in a palace.


Quote: I would not have any one adopt my mode of living on any account. by author Henry David Thoreau overlaid on photo of man in black bubble hoodie looking at the stars

I would not have any one adopt my mode of living on any account.


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