History Quotations


Most events recorded in history are more remarkable than important, like eclipses of the sun and moon, by which all are attracted, but whose effects no one takes the trouble to calculate.—A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers
Our reflections had already acquired a historical remoteness from the scenes we had left, and we ourselves essayed to sing.—A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers
The ancient philosophers, Chinese, Hindoo, Persian, and Greek, were a class than which none has been poorer in outward riches, none so rich in inward. We know not much about them. It is remarkable that we know so much of them as we do.—Walden
The sun rarely shines in history, what with the dust and confusion; and when we meet with any cheering fact which implies the presence of this luminary, we excerpt and modernize it.—A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers
This is one of those dateless benefits conferred on man, which have no record in our vulgar day, though we still find some similitude to them in our dreams, in which we have a more liberal and juster apprehension of things, unconstrained by habit, which is then in some measure put off, and divested of memory, which we call history.—A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers
Those who have not learned to read the ancient classics in the language in which they were written must have a very imperfect knowledge of the history of the human race; for it is remarkable that no transcript of them has ever been made into any modern tongue, unless our civilization itself may be regarded as such a transcript.—Walden
To some extent, mythology is only the most ancient history and biography.—A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers
Waves of serener life pass over us from time to time, like flakes of sunlight over the fields in cloudy weather. In some happier moment, when more sap flows in the withered stalk of our life, Syria and India stretch away from our present as they do in history. All the events which make the annals of the nations are but the shadows of our private experiences.—A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers
We are inclined to think of all Romans who lived within five hundred years B.C. as contemporaries to each other. Yet Time moved at the same deliberate pace then as now.—Journal, 8 December 1859
We should live in all the ages of the world in an hour; ay, in all the worlds of the ages. History, Poetry, Mythology!—I know of no reading of another's experience so startling and informing as this would be.—Walden
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