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After graduating from college, Emerson moved to Boston to teach at his brother William's School for Young Ladies and began to experiment with fiction and verse.In 1825, after quitting the ladies school, he entered Harvard Divinity School; one year later, he received his master's degree, which qualified him to preach.Other lectures followed — on diverse subjects such as Italy, biography, English literature, the philosophy of history, and human culture.
In 1840, he helped launch The Dial, a journal of literature, philosophy, and religion that focused on transcendentalist views.
After the first two years, he succeeded Fuller as its editor.
In 1821, he graduated thirteenth in his class of 1959, and he was elected class poet only after six other students declined the honor.
It was at Harvard that he began keeping his celebrated journals.
On September 14, 1835, he married Lydia Jackson of Plymouth, Massachusetts, and they moved into a house of their own in Concord, where they lived for the rest of their lives.
Essays By Ralph Waldo Emerson
Emerson's first book, Nature, was published anonymously in 1836.Although only a slim volume, it contains in brief the whole substance of his thought.It sold very poorly — after twelve years, its first edition of 500 copies had not yet sold out.Among his reasons for resigning were his refusal to administer the sacrament of the Last Supper, which he believed to be an unnecessary theological rite, and his belief that the ministry was an "antiquated profession." On Christmas Day, 1832, he left for Europe even though he was so ill that many of his friends thought he would not survive the rigors of the winter voyage.While in Europe, he met many of the leading thinkers of his time, including the economist and philosopher John Stuart Mill; Samuel Taylor Coleridge, whose Aids to Reflection Emerson admired; the poet William Wordsworth; and Thomas Carlyle, the historian and social critic, with whom Emerson established a lifelong friendship.For more educational audio and video, please visit Life and Background Ralph Waldo Emerson was born on May 25, 1803, to the Reverend William and Ruth Haskins Emerson.His father, pastor of the First Unitarian Church of Boston, chaplain of the Massachusetts Senate, and an editor of Monthly Anthology, a literary review, once described two-year-old son Waldo as "a rather dull scholar." (Emerson was called Waldo throughout his lifetime and even signed his checks as Waldo.) Following William's death from stomach cancer in 1811, the family was left in a state of near-poverty, and Emerson was raised by his mother and Mary Moody Emerson, an aunt whose acute, critical intelligence would have a lifelong influence on him.Through the persistence of these two women, he completed studies at the Boston Public Latin School.He began to suffer from symptoms of tuberculosis, and in the fall of 1827 he went to Georgia and Florida in hopes of improving his health.He returned in late December to Boston, where he preached occasionally.