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More from Ralph Waldo Emerson

I should as soon think of swimming across Charles River when I wish to go to Boston, as of reading all my books in originals when I have them rendered for me in my mother tongue.

Books

Men achieve a certain greatness unawares, when working to another aim.

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

Essays, "Character," 1844

The measure of a master is his success in bringing all men round to his opinion twenty years later.

The Conduct of Life (1860)

The first in time and the first in importance of the influences upon the mind is that of nature. Every day, the sun; and after sunset, night and her stars. Ever the winds blow; ever the grass grows.

Oration, August 31, 1837