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quotations about mountains

Mont Blanc is the monarch of mountains;
They crown'd him long ago
On a throne of rocks, in a robe of clouds,
With a diadem of snow.


Mountains interpos'd
Make enemies of nations, who had else,
Like kindred drops, been mingled into one.


'Tis distance lends enchantment to the view,
And robes the mountain in its azure hue.

THOMAS CAMPBELL, Pleasures of Hope

It's not the mountain we conquer but ourselves.

EDMUND HILLARY, O Magazine, Apr. 2007

Mountains are earth's undecaying monuments.

NATHANIEL HAWTHORNE, "The Notch of the White Mountains," Sketches from Memory

Most people stand in sight of the spiritual mountains all their lives and never enter them, being content to listen to others who have been there and thus avoid the hardships. Some travel into the mountains accompanied by experienced guides who know the best and least dangerous routes by which they arrive at their destination. Still others, inexperienced and untrusting, attempt to make their own routes. Few of these are successful, but occasionally some, by sheer will and luck and grace, do make it. Once there they become more aware than any of the others that there's no single or fixed number of routes. There are as many routes as there are individual souls.

ROBERT M. PIRSIG, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance

The grandeur of each mountain peak
That rears to heaven its granite form;
The craggy cliffs where eagles shriek
Amid the thunder and the storm.


The mountains were his masters. They rimmed in life. They were the cup of reality, beyond growth, beyond struggle and death. They were his absolute unity in the midst of eternal change.

THOMAS WOLFE, Look Homeward, Angel


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