"He has been described as "an innkeeper who hated his guests, a philosopher, and poet who left no written record of his thought, a despiser of women who gave all he had to one, an aristocrat, a proletarian, a pagan, an arcadian, an atheist, a lover of beauty, and, inadvertently, the stepfather of domestic science in America."
"Western hospitality prevails; it is reminiscent of the kind displayed earlier here by a host who said to an unexpected guest, "Stranger, you take the wold skin and the chaw o' sowbelly--I'll rough it."
"'Tis good to give a stranger a meal or a night's lodging. 'Tis better to be hospitable to his good meaning and thought, and give courage to a companion. We must be as courteous to a man as we are to a picture, which we are willing to give the advantage of a good light."
"The old coat that I wear is Concord; it is my morning robe and study gown, my working dress and suit of ceremony, and my nightgown after all. Cleave to the simplest ever. Home,--home,--home. Cars sound like cares to me."
"Is not the midnight like Central Africa to most of us? Are we not tempted to explore it,--to penetrate to the shores of its Lake Tchad, and discover the source of its Nile, perchance the Mountains of the Moon? Who knows what fertility and beauty, moral and natural, are to be found? In the Mountains of the Moon, in the Central Africa of the night, there is where all Niles have their hidden heads. The expeditions up the Nile as yet extend but to the Cataracts, or perchance to the mouth of the White Nile; but it is the black Nile that concerns us."
"To coöperate in the highest as well as the lowest sense, means to get our living together. I heard it proposed lately that two young men should travel together over the world, the one without money, earning his means as he went, before the mast and behind the plow, the other carrying a bill of exchange in his pocket. It was easy to see that they could not long be companions or coöperate, since one would not operate at all. They would part at the first interesting crisis in their adventures."
"Start now on that farthest western way, which does not pause at the Mississippi or the Pacific, nor conduct toward a worn-out China or Japan, but leads on direct, a tangent to this sphere, summer and winter, day and night, sun down, moon down, and at last earth down too."
"The village is the place to which the roads tend, a sort of expansion of the highway, as a lake of a river.... The word is from the Latin villa, which together with via, a way, or more anciently ved and vella, Varro derives from veho, to carry, because the villa is the place to and from which things are carried.... Hence, too, the Latin word vilis and our vile, also villain. This suggests what kind of degeneracy villagers are liable to. They are wayworn by the travel that goes by and over them, without traveling themselves."