Saturday, April 28, 2012


Language Learning

Ralph Waldo Emerson, Journals (May 30, 1834):
Languages as discipline, much reading as an additional atmosphere or two, to gird the loins & make the muscles more tense. It seems time lost for a grown man to be turning the leaves of a dictionary, like a boy, to learn German, but I believe he will gain tension & creative power by so doing. Good books have always a prolific atmosphere about them & brood upon the spirit.
Id. (December 9?, 1834):
There is great delight in learning a new language. When the day comes in the scholar’s progress unawares when he reads pages without recurrence to his dictionary, he shuts up his book with that sort of fearful delight with which the bridegroom sits down in his own house with the bride, saying, 'I shall now live with you always.'

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