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John James Audubon Quotes


A French-American ornithologist, naturalist, hunter, and painter. He painted, catalogued, and described the birds of North America in a form far superior to what had gone before.
(1785 - 1851)

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

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.
 

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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.
 

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

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.
 

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.
 

I waged war against my feelings.
 

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

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.
[Bodies]
 

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

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

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

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.
 


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