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There are plenty of quotable quotes about aging to go around; the ones below particularly appeal to me. They feel truthful, they're upbeat, and they demonstration that our cultural youth bias is just plain incorrect. These all focus on the power and possibility of later years. I start with the Concord (Massachusetts) authors -- living here for so long, I just couldn't resist. Enjoy them all, and add any of your own favorites in comments.
To keep the heart unwrinkled, to be hopeful, kindly, cheerful, reverent that is to triumph over old age.
Amos Bronson Alcott
The age of a woman doesn't mean a thing. The best tunes are played on the oldest fiddles.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
While one finds company in himself and his pursuits, he cannot feel old, no matter what his years may be.
Amos Bronson Alcott
None are so old as those who have outlived enthusiasm.
Henry David Thoreau (photo at right)
Have regular hours for work and play; make each day both useful and pleasant, and prove that you understand the worth of time by employing it well. Then youth will be delightful, old age will bring few regrets, and life will become a beautiful success.
Louisa May Alcott
An archaeologist is the best husband a woman can have. The older she gets the more interested he is in her.
Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young. The greatest thing in life is to keep your mind young.
Henry Ford (photo at right)
As I approve of a youth that has something of the old man in him, so I am no less pleased with an old man that has something of the youth. He that follows this rule may be old in body, but can never be so in mind.
Marcus Tullius Cicero
As I grow older, I pay less attention to what men say. I just watch what they do.
I think your whole life shows in your face and you should be proud of that.
No one can avoid aging, but aging productively is something else.
Nobody grows old merely by living a number of years. We grow old by deserting our ideals. Years may wrinkle the skin, but to give up enthusiasm wrinkles the soul.
Old age is an excellent time for outrage. My goal is to say or do at least one outrageous thing every week.
Those who love deeply never grow old; they may die of old age, but they die young.
Dorothy Canfield Fisher (photo at right)
We've put more effort into helping folks reach old age than into helping them enjoy it.
Frank Howard Clark
When grace is joined with wrinkles, it is adorable. There is an unspeakable dawn in happy old age.
Youth is the gift of nature, but age is a work of art.
We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.
George Bernard Shaw