A Friendly & Agreeable Influence


Johann Hamza, The Connoisseur in His Library, c. 1879 (detail)

by Ralph Waldo Emerson

Journal, October 1841

I would have my book read as I have read my favorite books not with explosion & astonishment, a marvel and a rocket, but a friendly & agreeable influence stealing like the scent of a flower or the sight of a new landscape on a traveller. I neither wish to be hated & deified by such as I startle, nor to be kissed and hugged by the young whose thoughts I stimulate. Plutarch’s heroes are my friends & relatives.

About the Author

Ralph Waldo Emerson was an American essayist, poet and Transcendentalist.

Publication Rights

Ermerson’s writings are in the public domain (via).

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