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Date: August 31, 1837

"But they can only highly serve us, when they aim not to drill, but to create; when they gather from far every ray of various genius to their hospitable halls, and, by the concentrated fires, set the hearts of their youth on flame."

— Emerson, Ralph Waldo (1803-1882)

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Date: w. 1821, 1840

"A single sentence may be considered as a whole, though it may be found in the midst of a series of unassimilated portions; a single word even may be a spark of inextinguishable thought."

— Shelley, Percy Bysshe (1792-1822)

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Date: w. 1821, 1840

"The greatest poet even cannot say it; for the mind in creation is as a fading coal, which some invisible influence, like an inconstant wind, awakens to transitory brightness; this power arises from within, like the color of a flower which fades and changes as it is developed, and the conscious p...

— Shelley, Percy Bysshe (1792-1822)

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Date: 1845

"My soul was set all on fire."

— Douglass, Frederick (1818-1895)

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Date: April, 1871

"A hot flash seems to burn across the brain."

— Bagehot, William (1826-1877)

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Date: April, 1871

"In the same way, I think, experience proves that no one who has had real passionate conviction of a creed, the sort of emotion that burns hot upon the brain, can ever be indifferent to that creed again."

— Bagehot, William (1826-1877)

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The Mind is a Metaphor is authored by Brad Pasanek, Assistant Professor of English, University of Virginia.