Quotation by Ralph Waldo Emerson

One definition of man is "an intelligence served by organs."
Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803–1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. "Works and Days," Society and Solitude (1870).

Emerson may have taken this definition from Louis De Bonald's Théorie de Pouvoir Politique et Religieux (1796). The French writers Edmond and Jules de Goncourt, in an entry July 30, 1861, in The Goncourt Journals (1888-1896), wrote "Man is a mind betrayed, not served, by his organs," and Aldous Huxley proposed rather that "Man is an intelligence, not served by, but in servitude to his organs" (in Themes and Variations, "Variations on a Philosopher," 1950).
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