Henry David Thoreau Quotes

Who is Henry David Thoreau?

Henry David Thoreau was an American philosopher, naturalist and author who lived in a cabin in the woods. He is the author of the classic book Walden.

Born July 12, 1817
Died May 06, 1862

Books by Henry David Thoreau


Best 49 Quotes by Henry David Thoreau – Page 1 of 2

“Distrust any enterprise that requires new clothes.”

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

“If you would convince a man that he does wrong, do right. But do not care to convince him. Men will believe what they see. Let them see.”

“It's not what you look at that matters, it's what you see.”

“Most men lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with their song still in them.”

“My friend is one... who take me for what I am.”

“None are so old as those who have outlived enthusiasm.”

“The price of anything is the amount of life you exchange for it.”

“To be awake is to be alive.”

“What is called genius is the abundance of life and health.”

“What is the use of a house if you haven't got a tolerable planet to put it on?”

“A man can suffocate on courtesy.”

“A man may be very industrious, and yet not spend his time well. There is no more fatal blunderer than he who consumes the greater part of life getting his living.”

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

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“Books can only reveal us to ourselves, and as often as they do us this service we lay them aside.”

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

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“Musical innovation is full of danger to the State, for when modes of music change, the fundamental laws of the State always change with them.”

The Republic


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“Do not hire a man who does your work for money, but him who does it for love of it.”

“Don't be afraid that your life will end, be afraid that it will never begin!”

“Every generation laughs at the old fashions, but follows religiously the new.”

“Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.”

“He enjoys true leisure who has time to improve his soul's estate.”

“He who distinguishes the true savor of his food can never be a glutton; he who does not cannot be otherwise.”

“I can alter my life by altering my attitude. He who would have nothing to do with thorns must never attempt to gather flowers.”

“I make myself rich by making my wants few.”

“I was not born to be forced. I will breathe after my own fashion. Let us see who is the strongest.”

“I would rather sit on a pumpkin, and have it all to myself, than be crowded on a velvet cushion.”

“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
an oak. Shall he turn his spring into summer?”

“If a plant cannot live according to its nature, it dies; and so a man.”

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“In what concerns you much, do not think that you have companions: know that you are alone in the world.”

“It is never too late to give up our prejudices.”

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“I do not fear death. I had been dead for billions and billions of years before I was born, and had not suffered the slightest inconvenience from it.”


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