John James Audubon - Quotes

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Great men show politeness in a particular way; a smile suffices to assure you that you are welcome, and keep about their avocations as if you were a member of the family.

Great men show politeness in a particular way; a smile suffices to assure you that you are welcome, and keep about their avocations as if you were a member of the family.

I ate no butcher's meat, lived chiefly on fruits, vegetables, and fish, and never drank a glass of spirits or wine until my wedding day. To this I attribute my continual good health, endurance, and an iron constitution.

I ate no butcher's meat, lived chiefly on fruits, vegetables, and fish, and never drank a glass of spirits or wine until my wedding day. To this I attribute my continual good health, endurance, and an iron constitution.

A true conservationist is a man who knows that the world is not given by his fathers, but borrowed from his children.

A true conservationist is a man who knows that the world is not given by his fathers, but borrowed from his children.

All trembling, I reached the Falls of Niagara, and oh, what a scene! My blood shudders still, although I am not a coward, at the grandeur of the Creator's power; and I gazed motionless on this new display of the irresistible force of one of His elements. ---->>>

In my deepest troubles, I frequently would wrench myself from the persons around me and retire to some secluded part of our noble forests. ---->>>

The worse my drawings were, the more beautiful did the originals appear. ---->>>

I can scarcely manage to scribble a tolerable English letter. I know that I am not a scholar, but meantime I am aware that no man living knows better than I do the habits of our birds. ---->>>

One day I caught four Dolphins, how much I have gazed at these beautiful creatures... as they changed their hue in twenty varieties of richest arrangement of tints. ---->>>

I never for a day gave up listening to the songs of our birds, or watching their peculiar habits, or delineating them in the best way I could. ---->>>

As I grew up I was fervently desirous of becoming acquainted with Nature. ---->>>

On landing at New York I caught the yellow fever. The kind man who commanded the ship that brought me from France took charge of me and placed me under the care of two Quaker ladies. To their skillful and untiring care I may safely say I owe my life. ---->>>

Ah! How often when I have been abroad on the mountains has my heart risen in grateful praise to God that it was not my destiny to waste and pine among those noisome congregations of the city. ---->>>

The fact is I am growing old too fast, alas! I feel it, and yet work I will, and may God grant me life to see the last plate of my mammoth work finished. ---->>>

The gay bunting erects his white crest, and gives utterance to the joy he feels in the presence of his brooding mate; the willow grouse on the rock crows his challenge aloud; each floweret, chilled by the night air, expands its pure petals; the gentle breeze shakes from the blades of grass the heavy dewdrops. ---->>>

Hunting, fishing, drawing, and music occupied my every moment. Cares I knew not, and cared naught about them. ---->>>

During all these years there existed within me a tendency to follow Nature in her walks.

During all these years there existed within me a tendency to follow Nature in her walks.

But Hopes are Shy Birds flying at a great distance seldom reached by the best of Guns.

But Hopes are Shy Birds flying at a great distance seldom reached by the best of Guns.

To be a good draftsman was to me a blessing. ---->>>

Mathematics was hard, dull work. Geography pleased me more. For dancing I was quite enthusiastic. ---->>>

Go where you will, if a shilling can there be procured, you may expect to meet with individuals in search of it. ---->>>

The Golden Eagle, which has universally been considered as a bird of most extraordinary powers of flight, is in my estimation little more than a sluggard, though its wings are long and ample. ---->>>

To repay evils with kindness is the religion I was taught to practise, and this will forever be my rule. ---->>>

After all, I long to be in America again, nay, if I can go home to return no more to Europe, it seems to me that I shall ever enjoy more peace of mind, and even Physical comfort than I can meet with in any portion of the world beside. ---->>>

On the 17th of May, the Delos put out to sea. I was immediately affected with sea-sickness, which, however, lasted but a short time. I remained on deck constantly, forcing myself to exercise. ---->>>

Surrounded by all the members of my dear family, enjoying the affection of numerous friends, who have never abandoned me, and possessing a sufficient share of all that contributes to make life agreeable, I lift my grateful eyes towards the Supreme Being and feel that I am happy. ---->>>

From the top of a high rock, I obtained a good few of the most extensive and dreary wilderness I ever beheld. It chilled the heart to gaze on these barrens of Labrador. Indeed, I now dread every change of harbor, so horridly rugged and dangerous is the whole coast and country to the eye, and to the experienced man either of the sea or the land. ---->>>

I feel fully decided that we should all go to Europe together and to work as if an established Partnership for Life consisting of Husband Wife and Children. ---->>>

July 2. A beautiful day for Labrador. Went ashore and killed nothing, but was pleased with what I saw. The country is so grandly wild and desolate that I am charmed by its wonderful dreariness. ---->>>

Poor France, thy fine climate, rich vineyards, and the wishes of the learned avail nothing; thou art a destitute beggar, and not the powerful friend thou wert represented to me. ---->>>

There is the morass, wherein you plunge up to your knees, or the walking over the stubborn, dwarfish shrubbery, whereby one treads down the forests of Labrador; and the unexpected bunting or sylvia which perchance, and indeed as if by chance alone, you now and then see flying before you, or hear singing from the ground creeping plant. ---->>>

If I can procure three hundred good substantial names of persons, or bodies, or institutions, I cannot fail to do well for my family, although I must abandon my life to its success, and undergo many sad perplexities and perhaps never see again my own beloved America. ---->>>

I wish I had eight pairs of hands, and another body to shoot the specimens. ---->>>

Almost every day, instead of going to school, I made for the fields, where I spent my day. ---->>>

How could I make a little book, when I have seen enough to make a dozen large books? ---->>>

I waged war against my feelings. ---->>>

In America, business is the first object in view at all times, and rightly it should be so. ---->>>

My drawings at first were made altogether in watercolors, but they wanted softness and a great deal of finish. ---->>>

The mercantile business did not suit me. ---->>>

I cannot help but think a curious event is this life of mine. ---->>>

I discover that my friends think only of my apparel, and those upon whom I have conferred acts of kindness prefer to remind me of my errors. ---->>>

A few days of idleness have completely sickened me, and given me what is called the blue-devils so severely, that I feel that the sooner I go to work and drive them off, the better. ---->>>

Because my father was often absent on naval duty, my mother suffered me to do much as I pleased. ---->>>

My wife determined that my genius should prevail, and that my final success as an ornithologist should be triumphant. ---->>>

I feel I am strange to all but the birds of America. ---->>>

To have been torn from the study would have been as death; my time was entirely occupied with art. ---->>>

Would it be possible that I should not in any degree succeed? I can scarcely think so. Ah delusive hope, how much further wilt thou lead me? ---->>>

I looked long and carefully at the picture of a stag painted by Landseer - the style was good, and the brush was handled with fine effect; but he fails in copying Nature, without which the best work will be a failure. ---->>>

The best recommendation I can have is my own talents, and the fruits of my own labors, and what others will not do for me, I will try and do for myself. ---->>>

The varying modes of flight exhibited by our diurnal birds of prey have always been to me a subject of great interest, especially as by means of them I have found myself enabled to distinguish one species from another, to the farthest extent of my power of vision. ---->>>

Patiently and with industry did I apply myself to study, for although I felt the impossibility of giving life to my productions, I did not abandon the idea of representing nature. ---->>>

Reader, persons who have never witnessed a hurricane, such as not unfrequently desolates the sultry climates of the south, can scarcely form an idea of their terrific grandeur. One would think that, not content with laying waste all on land, it must needs sweep the waters of the shallows quite dry to quench its thirst. ---->>>

The Carrion Crow and Turkey-Buzzard possess great power of recollection, so as to recognise at a great distance a person who has shot at them, and even the horse on which he rides. ---->>>

The eggers destroy all the eggs that are sat upon, to force the birds to lay fresh eggs, and by robbing them regularly compel them to lay until nature is exhausted, and so but few young ones are raised. ---->>>

There is but one kind of love; God is love, and all his creatures derive theirs from his; only it is modified by the different degrees of intelligence in different beings and creatures. ---->>>

Travelling through the breeding places of our species is far from being as interesting to me as it is to inspect the breeding places of the feathery tribes of our country. ---->>>

The Fur Company may be called the exterminating medium of these wild and almost uninhabitable regions, which cupidity or the love of money alone would induce man to venture into. Where can I now go and find nature undisturbed? ---->>>

Biography

Nationality: American
Born: April 26, 1785
Birthplace: Les Cayes, Saint-Domingue (later Haiti)
Die: January 27, 1851
Occupation: Scientist
Website:

John James Audubon (born Jean Rabin; April 26, 1785 – January 27, 1851) was an American ornithologist, naturalist, and painter. He was notable for his extensive studies documenting all types of American birds and for his detailed illustrations that depicted the birds in their natural habitats. His major work, a color-plate book entitled The Birds of America (1827–1839), is considered one of the finest ornithological works ever completed (wikipedia)