The impression left on our minds by the aspect of nature
is frequently determined, less even by the peculiar character
of the strictly terrestrial portion of the scene, than by the
light thrown on mountain or plain, either by a sky of azure
purity, or by one veiled by lowering clouds; and in the
same manner descriptions of nature act upon us more
powerfully or more feebly, according as they are more or
less in harmony with the requirements of our feelings. For
it is the inward mirror of the sensitive mind which reflects
the true and living image of the natural world. All that
determines the character of a landscape, the outline of the
mountains, which, in the far-vanishing distance, bound the
horizon, the dark shade of the pine forests, the sylvan
torrent rushing between overhanging cliffs to its fall, all
are in antecedent mysterious communion with the inner
feelings and life
of man.


Alexander von Humboldt

(1769 - 1859)

Aspects of Nature

Stuttgart und Tübingen 1808


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