Henry David ThoreauHenry David Thoreau, (1817-1862) American author, poet, philosopher, polymath, abolitionist, naturalist, tax resister, development critic, surveyor, historian, and transcendentalist

Famous Henry David Thoreau Quote

“That man is richest whose pleasures are cheapest.”

Henry David ThoreauHenry David Thoreau
~ Henry David Thoreau

Journals, March 11, 1856

Ratings and Comments

Mike, Norwalk

I love this. I've personally found this to be absolute, no matter how much materialism an individual possesses or controls.

Waffler, Smith

Not all men have the courage to sit by the side of a pond for a year!

  • Reply
RBESRQ    3/24/09

Some of my happiest moments were the cheapest.

Mike, Norwalk

Waffler, it is too bad and very sad your metaphor is so correct so often. I've opened my self up on this blog and explained on more than one occasion that I and my family didn't have as much as a car to sleep in more than once. Now I produce products out of manufacturing facilities in multiple states and it is growing even in this economy. The things that have made me rich are a phenomenal family, friends, and neighbors. Through thick or thin the family has always come together. I was/am richest when my children began to walk, ride a bike, started to read, select super spouses, and watching the grand kids do it all over again etc., etc., etc. I'm richest and my gratitude is at its fullest when I'm in the service of my fellow man and others secretly and openly try to help me. I'm richest when I see neighbors interact, one with another, and then do little secret things for each other. I'm richest when I'm on the side of a pond watching nature. I guess I could here right volumes but at the very least "That man is richest whose pleasures are cheapest"

  • Reply
Anon    3/24/09

If only more people thought this way our societal problems would solve themselves naturally.

E Archer, NYC

A forgotten concept by many who buy everything on credit, always searching for more and more and more. Thanks, Mike, my sentiments exactly.

M. Brown, Florida

It comes down to what you consider "rich". A truly rich person, has nothing to do with a large bank account, as we have learned as of late.

Waffler, Smith

Mike I have spent to three week stints in a National Forest with just my dog. I spent my mornings walking and picking up the twenty year accumulation of beer cans left there by hunters. You are maybe the third person to know this. I received great gratification by doint that. I like many have taken time away from my own selfish interests to help others mostly anonymously and received satisfaction from that also.This quote can be taken many ways. If you have cheap pleasures of course you won't be spending but saving your money. I just returned from Mexico where I saw exteme poverty compared to the life that I live and I then visited New Orleans French Quarter where I spent $6 dollars for a beer in order to here great jazz. That was an expense pleasure but man was the music great. I cannot solve the Mexican poverty by myself. Mexican society needs to improve.

a k siddiqui, varanasi

of course it's true, the pleasure for which we wander here n there may be with us or inside us or near us n it need not be expensive. it's actually the way of enjoying by feeling the things surrounding, so we must change our way of thinking n loving

Ronw13, Yachats Or

How very Epicurean of Thoreau. Waffler's misdirection is amusing, seeing he has never walked, where no man has ever walked before ! a forest, is not, The Mountain ! This quote can be true, of every day of, your life ! There again, an education guided by greed and materialism, condoning socialism, just perpetuates the divide and creates the so called poverty. There are still certain tribes in Mexico, within the Twelve canyon region, who do not cotton to enslavement. Living a very simple good life having no word for begging, they all share walking according to natural laws of morality, this within their heart and mind. The catholic's termed them, very slippery to catch, convert and enslave !! Wealth and Power looking for plunder and cheap labor. They came in from the south and overthrew us from the north. Progress my bahunkas ! Semper Fi

Ronw13, Yachats Or

Very well said Mike !


Get a Quote-a-Day!

Liberty Quotes sent to your mail box daily.