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Tom Brady quotes Ralph Waldo Emerson in Instagram post, one day after Gisele’s tell-all interview with Vanity Fair

American essayist Ralph Waldo Emerson, circa 1870. He was among the leaders of the transcendental movement in Boston.Getty Images/Getty

One day after supermodel Gisele Bündchen’s tell-all interview with Vanity Fair dropped, former husband Tom Brady took to Instagram to post a famous quote from Ralph Waldo Emerson, in which the 19th century author references “the betrayal of false friends.”

Brady, the 45-year-old former New England Patriots quarterback who retired from the NFL in February, posted the Emerson quote Thursday to his Instagram story. The New York Post previously reported on the posting.

“What is success?” begins the quote from the transcendentalist thinker. “To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; to earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate the beauty; to find the best in others; to leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch or a redeemed social condition; to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.”

Brady, who led the Patriots to six Super Bowl titles before winning a seventh with the Bucs, didn’t offer any context for the posting.


He and Bündchen amicably divorced last year, and her Vanity Fair interview was the first time she’d commented at length on the split that rocked the worlds of pro sports and high fashion.

Bündchen, at times becoming emotional during her wide-ranging interview, told the magazine the divorce represented “the death of my dream,” likening the high-profile split to “a death and a rebirth.”

“You give everything you got to achieve your dream ... and it’s heartbreaking when it doesn’t end up the way you hoped for, and worked for, but you can only do your part,” Bündchen told Vanity Fair.

Material from prior Globe stories was used in this report.


Travis Andersen can be reached at travis.andersen@globe.com.