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“Life is selection, no more. The work of the gardener is simply to destroy this weed, or that shrub, or that tree, & leave this other to grow. The library is gradually made inestimable by taking out from the superabounding mass of books all but the best. The palace is a selection of materials; it’s architecture, a selection of the best effects. Things collect very fast of themselves; the difference between house & house is the wise omissions.”

May–June 1846, Emerson in His Journals, selected and edited by Joel Porte (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1982), 357.
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