John muir and the elegant essay

Paper type: Government,

Words: 709 | Published: 02.18.20 | Views: 175 | Download now

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“with tough passages here and there they are opulent pathways performing to the snowy, icy fountains; mountains streets full of life and light, graded and sculptured by ancient snow, and offering throughout all their course a rich various novel and attractive landscape – the most attractive which includes yet recently been discovered in the mountain runs of the world” (Muir, 1912, p 2). By studying his works, individuals who experienced never set eyes on the Sierras believed an psychological and personal connection to them.

Muir was as well careful to cope with the classy nature of these mountains. Relating to Edward cullen Burke in the classic articles about the size of the elegant, “when threat or soreness press too nearly, they are not capable of giving any kind of delight, and are simply horrible; but by certain distances, and with certain modifications, they may be, and are also, delightful as we every day experience” (Burke, 1757, p 32). As such, the concept of sublime entails not only surprise, but also a strange concept of respect for the danger it holds within. These kinds of mountains happen to be beautiful, but Muir also respected their very own danger. The wilderness is not a forgiving place. Thus, Muir uses the wild nature with the wilderness to help his awe. Again, Burke writes in the classic text message, “the passion caused by the truly great and elegant in mother nature, when individuals causes operate most powerfully, is astonishment; and astonishment is that state of the heart in which most of its actions are hung, with some degree of horror” (Burke, 1757, p 45). Burke’s concept of the sublime show up in Muir’s large amazement of the beauty and danger throughout the american American wilderness. He obviously expressed his astonishment during his articles, which match with Burke’s descriptions showing how sublimity in nature is definitely an astonishing eyesight that can freeze out the rational mind in a state of amazement and wonder. The sublime is definitely not something to be only wondered in, but likewise to be highly regarded. By hooking up the concept of the sublime to his explanation of the Sierras, Muir can be asking not only for his readers to get amazed with the wild place, but as well to esteem it. This kind of respect is essential in discussion efforts, therefore was a strong rhetorical instrument used in his writings.

His writing as well utilized weighty religious undertones to help present the backwoods and its elegant nature most effectively. Muir himself was brought up within a strict Calvinist environment (Fleck, 1979). Because previously explained, sublime is definitely both simply dangerous. This definitely coincides with the idea of God’s allgewaltig power in the earth. Consequently, his writing is steeped in religious undertones. Here, he writes “and from the east boundary of the vast fantastic flower-bed arose the mighty Sierra, kilometers in height, therefore gloriously colored and so bright, it looked like no clothed with mild, but wholly composed of that, like the wall of some celestial city” (Muir, 1912, p 2). He likened the untamed wilderness to God’s majestic creations, as a result further relating his description of the Sierras to the concept of the elegant.

John Muir helped mould the American consciousness to be able to admire and respect the country’s natural assets. He employed vivid symbolism and spiritual undertones showing the nation the strength and shock of the Macizo Nevada Mountains. Without his effort and contributions, today’s world may not be capable to still benefit from the majestic landscape he fought so hard to shield.


Burkie, Edward. (1757). A Philosophical Inquiry in the Origin of the Ideas in the Sublime and Beautiful. The University of Adelaide.

Fleck, Richard Farrenheit. (1979). Steve Muir: The celebration of wilderness. Serranía Club. Net. Retrieved via

Muir, John. (1912). The approach to the valley. The Yosemite. John Muir Writings. Net. Retrieved from

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