"A friend is what the heart needs all the time.""A peace that depends on fear is nothing but a suppressed war.""As long as habit and routine dictate the pattern of living, new dimensions of the soul will not emerge.""Be glad of life because it gives you the chance to love, to work, to play, and to look up at the stars.""Culture is the habit of being pleased with the best and knowing why.""Genius is talent set on fire by courage.""Gratitude is the inward feeling of kindness received. Thankfulness is the natural impulse to express that feeling. Thanksgiving is the following of that impulse.""Half of the secular unrest and dismal, profane sadness of modern society comes from the vain ideas that every man is bound to be a critic for life.""Happiness is inward, and not outward; and so, it does not depend on what we have, but on what we are.""In the progress of personality, first comes a declaration of independence, then a recognition of interdependence.""It is with rivers as it is with people: the greatest are not always the most agreeable nor the best to live with.""Look around for a place to sow a few seeds.""Love is the best thing in the world, and the thing that lives the longest.""Some people are so afraid do die that they never begin to live.""The first day of spring is one thing, and the first spring day is another. The difference between them is sometimes as great as a month.""There are two good rules which ought to be written on every heart - never to believe anything bad about anybody unless you positively know it to be true; never to tell even that unless you feel that it is absolutely necessary, and that God is listening.""There is a loftier ambition than merely to stand high in the world. It is to stoop down and lift mankind a little higher.""There is no personal charm so great as the charm of a cheerful temperament.""There is only one way to get ready for immortality, and that is to love this life and live it as bravely and faithfully and cheerfully as we can.""Time is too slow for those who wait, too swift for those who fear, too long for those who grieve, too short for those who rejoice, but for those who love, time is eternity.""To desire and strive to be of some service to the world, to aim at doing something which shall really increase the happiness and welfare and virtue of mankind - this is a choice which is possible for all of us; and surely it is a good haven to sail for.""Use what talents you possess; the woods would be very silent if no birds sang there except those that sang best.""What we do belongs to what we are; and what we are is what becomes of us.""What you possess in the world will be found at the day of your death to belong to someone else. But what you are will be yours forever."
Henry van Dyke was born on November 10, 1852 in Germantown, Pennsylvania in the United States.He graduated from Princeton University in 1873 and from Princeton Theological Seminary, 1877 and served as a professor of English literature at Princeton between 1899 and 1923. In 1908-09 Dr. van Dyke was an American lecturer at the University of Paris. By appointment of President Wilson he became Minister to the Netherlands and Luxembourg in 1913. He was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Letters and received many other honors.
He chaired the committee that wrote the first Presbyterian printed liturgy, The Book of Common Worship of 1906. Among his popular writings are the two Christmas stories The Other Wise Man (1896) and The First Christmas Tree (1897). Various religious themes of his work are also expressed in his poetry, hymns and the essays collected in Little Rivers (1895) and Fisherman’s Luck (1899). He wrote the lyrics to the popular hymn, "Joyful, Joyful We Adore Thee" (1907), sung to the tune of Beethoven's Ode to Joy. He compiled several short stories in The Blue Flower (1902) named after the key symbol of Romanticism introduced first by Novalis. He also contributed a chapter to the collaborative novel, The Whole Family (1908). Among his poems is Katrina's Sundial, the inspiration for the song Time Is by the group It's a Beautiful Day on their eponymous 1969 debut album.
A biography of Van Dyke, titled Henry Van Dyke: A Biography, was written by his son Tertius van Dyke and published in 1935.