"an intellect like Emerson’s"
Ralph Waldo Emerson (1878)
Public DomainRalph Waldo Emerson (1878) - Credit: Stephen Alonzo Schoff & Samuel Worcester Rowse

Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-82), nicknamed ‘the Concord Sage,’ was the leader of the Transcendentalist movement and one of the foremost intellectuals of his generation. In a series of essays, he espoused a philosophy based on the direct experience of God through nature, individualism, non-conformity and freedom. He and Hawthorne became acquainted when the latter moved to Concord to take up residence in the Old Manse in 1842. Each had reservations about the other’s work but admired the intellect and talent from which it sprang, and they attended meetings and took long nature walks together where they would discuss their ideas. 

Read Emerson's essays here.