Thoreau's Journal: 10-Jan-1851

I have met with but one or two persons in the course of my life who understood the art of taking walks daily, —not [to] exercise the legs or body merely, nor barely to recruit the spirits, but positively to exercise both body and spirit, and to succeed to the highest and worthiest ends by the abandonment of all specific ends,—who had a genius, so to speak, for sauntering. And this word “saunter,” by the way, is happily derived “from idle people who roved about the country [in the Middle Ages] and asked charity under pretence of going a la Sainte-Terrer,” a Holy-Lander. They who never go to the Holy Land in their walks, as they pretend, are indeed mere idlers and vagabonds.


McD said...

Gregory--thank you for doing this. Thoreau, although delightfully outrageous, is a fresh voice in my life every day. I hope you keep this blog going.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, thanx indeed.

Just bought the 1984 edition of Thoreaus Journals, which are a reprint of your edition - also in 14 volumes.

It's still not a library of 900 of which 700 are written by Thoreau, but it's a beginning. Keep up the good work.