Henry David Thoreau

Henry David Thoreau

American author, philosopher
12 July 1817 — 6 May 1862

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Henry David Thoreau's books

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If we read of one man robbed, or murdered, or killed by accident, or one house burned, or one vessel wrecked, or one steamboat blown up, or one cow run over on the Western Railroad, or one mad dog killed, or one lot of grasshoppers in the winter, - we need never read of another. One is enough. If you are acquainted with the principle, what do you care for a myriad instances and applications? To a philosopher all news, as it is called, is gossip, and they who edit and read it are old women over their tea.

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Could a greater miracle take place than for us to look through each other`s eyes for an instant?

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.

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.

Say what you have to say, not what you ought. Any truth is better than make-believe.

A single gentle rain makes the grass many shades greener. So our prospects brighten on the influx of better thoughts.

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Books must be read as deliberately and reservedly as they were written.

You cannot kill time without injuring eternity.

Friends... they cherish one another`s hopes. They are kind to one another`s dreams.

Success usually comes to those who are too busy to be looking for it.

The language of friendship is not words but meanings.

I have never found a companion so companionable as solitude.

I should not obtrude my affairs so much on the notice of my readers if very particular inquiries had not been made by my townsmen concerning my mode of life.

With a little more deliberation in the choice of their pursuits, all men would perhaps become essentially students and observers.

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

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