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...affinities in literature or human society, and the soul resents the keenest mere intellection, they will not be sought for.
For a philosopher, Emerson possesses a singularly dandified theory of manners. He seems to have no notion at all that manners are simply the signs by which the chemist or metallurgist knows his metals. To the profound scientist, all metals are profound, as they really are. The little one, like the conventional world, will make much of gold and silver only. ThenTo the real artist in humanity, what are called bad manners are often the most picturesque and significant of all.Suppose these books becoming absorb'd, the permanent chyle of American general and particular character--what a well-wash'd and grammatical, but bloodless and helpless, race we should turn out! No, no, dear friend; though the States want scholars, undoubtedly, and perhaps want ladies and gentlemen who use the bath frequently, and never laugh loud, or talk wrong, they don't want scholars, or ladies and gentlemen, at the expense of all the rest. They want good farmers, sailors,... Whitman, Walt
Excerpt from Complete Prose Works Specimen Days and Collect, November Boughs and Goodbye My Fancy · This quote is about manners · Search on Google Books to find all references and sources for this quotation.
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