I also have in my mind that seemingly wealthy, but most terribly impoverished class of all, who have accumulated dross, but know not how to use it, or get rid of it, and thus have forged their own golden or silver fetters.

Henry David Thoreau

Henry David Thoreau

Profession: Author
Nationality: American

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Virtue does not remain as an abandoned orphan; it must of necessity have neighbors.

Though I do not believe that a plant will spring up where no seed has been I have great faith in a seed.

How can a man be satisfied to entertain an opinion merely, and enjoy it?

That man is the richest whose pleasures are the cheapest.

Books are the carriers of civilization. Without books, history is silent.

The most distinct and beautiful statement of any form must take at last the mathematical form.We might so simplify the rules of moral philosophy, as well as of arithmetic, that one formula would express them both.

To read well, that is, to read true books in a true spirit, is a noble exercise...

Roads are made for horses and men of business. I do not travel in them much, comparatively, because I am not in a hurry to get to any tavern or grocery or livery-stable or depot to which they lead.

I love a broad margin to my life.

America is said to be the arena on which the battle of freedom is to be fought; but surely it cannot be freedom in a merely political sense that is meant. Even if we grant that the American has freed himself from a political tyrant, he is still the slave of an economical and moral tyrant.

When it is time to die, let us not discover that we never lived.

It is remarkable that, notwithstanding the universal favor with which the New Testament is outwardly received, and even the bigotry with which it is defended, there is no hospitality shown to, there is no appreciation of, the order of truth with which it deals.

What we will call beautiful Knowledge, a knowledge useful in a higher sense: for what is most of our boated so-called knowledge but a conceit that we know something, which robs us of the advantage of our actual ignorance?

I believe that there is a subtle magnetism in Nature, which, if we unconsciously yield to it, will direct us aright.