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Who said: “I seem to have been only like a boy playing on the seashore, ... finding a smoother pebble or a prettier shell ... whilst the great ocean of truth lay all undiscovered before me.”
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Home > Dictionary of Science Quotations > Scientist Names Index A > Edward Abbey Quotes

Edward Abbey
(29 Jan 1927 - 14 Mar 1989)

American author.

Science Quotes by Edward Abbey (20 quotes)

A good philosopher is one who does not take ideas seriously.
— Edward Abbey
In 'Philosophy, Religion, and So Forth', A Voice Crying in the Wilderness (1989), 1.
Science quotes on:  |  Good (228)  |  Idea (440)  |  Philosopher (132)  |  Seriously (13)

And nowhere is water so beautiful as in the desert for nowhere else is it so scarce. By definition. Water, like a human being or a tree or a bird or a song gains value by rarity, singularity, isolation. In a human climate water is common. In the desert each drop is precious.
— Edward Abbey
Desert Solitaire
Science quotes on:  |  Beautiful (81)  |  Bird (96)  |  Climate (38)  |  Common (92)  |  Definition (152)  |  Desert (27)  |  Drop (27)  |  Gain (48)  |  Human (445)  |  Human Being (54)  |  Isolation (26)  |  Nowhere (19)  |  Precious (22)  |  Rarity (9)  |  Scarce (5)  |  Singularity (3)  |  Song (18)  |  Tree (143)  |  Value (180)  |  Water (244)

Better a cruel truth than a comfortable delusion.
— Edward Abbey
In 'Philosophy, Religion, and So Forth', A Voice Crying in the Wilderness (1989), 12.
Science quotes on:  |  Comfortable (6)  |  Cruel (10)  |  Delusion (13)  |  Truth (750)

From the point of view of a tapeworm, man was created by God to serve the appetite of the tapeworm.
— Edward Abbey
In 'Philosophy, Religion, and So Forth', A Voice Crying in the Wilderness (1989), 4.
Science quotes on:  |  Appetite (6)  |  Create (98)  |  God (454)  |  Point Of View (26)  |  Serve (34)  |  Tapeworm (2)

Growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of the cancer cell.
— Edward Abbey
In 'Arizona: How Big is Enough?', One Life at a Time, Please (1988), 21.
Science quotes on:  |  Cancer (44)  |  Cell (125)  |  Growth (111)  |  Ideology (7)  |  Sake (17)

High technology has done us one great service: It has retaught us the delight of performing simple and primordial tasks—chopping wood, building a fire, drawing water from a spring.
— Edward Abbey
In 'Science and Technology', A Voice Crying in the Wilderness (Vox Clamantis in Deserto) (1989), 91.
Science quotes on:  |  Build (80)  |  Chop (5)  |  Delight (51)  |  Draw (25)  |  Fire (117)  |  Great (300)  |  High (78)  |  Perform (27)  |  Primordial (7)  |  Service (54)  |  Simple (111)  |  Spring (47)  |  Task (68)  |  Technology (199)  |  Water (244)  |  Wood (33)

Is there a God? Who knows? Is there an angry unicorn on the dark side of the moon?
— Edward Abbey
In 'Philosophy, Religion, and So Forth', A Voice Crying in the Wilderness (1989), 2.
Science quotes on:  |  Angry (5)  |  Dark (49)  |  God (454)  |  Know (321)  |  Moon (132)  |  Science And Religion (267)  |  Side (36)  |  Unicorn (2)

Only a fool would leave the enjoyment of rainbows to the opticians. Or give the science of optics the last word on the matter.
— Edward Abbey
In 'Philosophy, Religion, and So Forth', A Voice Crying in the Wilderness (1989), 12.
Science quotes on:  |  Enjoyment (27)  |  Fool (70)  |  Last Word (8)  |  Optics (15)  |  Rainbow (8)

Quantum mechanics provides us with an approximate, plausible, conjectural explanation of what actually is, or was, or may be taking place inside a cyclotron during a dark night in February.
— Edward Abbey
In 'Science and Technology', A Voice Crying in the Wilderness (Vox Clamantis in Deserto) (1989), 91.
Science quotes on:  |  Actual (34)  |  Approximate (3)  |  Dark (49)  |  Explanation (161)  |  Night (73)  |  Plausible (6)  |  Quantum Mechanics (31)

Reason has seldom failed us because it has seldom been tried.
— Edward Abbey
In 'Philosophy, Religion, and So Forth', A Voice Crying in the Wilderness (1989), 2.
Science quotes on:  |  Fail (34)  |  Reason (330)  |  Seldom (21)  |  Try (103)

That which today calls itself science gives us more and more information, an indigestible glut of information, and less and less understanding.
— Edward Abbey
In 'Down the River with Henry Thoreau,' collected in Stephen Trimble (ed.), Words from the Land: Encounters with Natural History Writing (1981, 1988), 62.
Science quotes on:  |  Information (102)  |  Science (1699)  |  Understanding (317)

The canyon country does not always inspire love. To many it appears barren, hostile, repellent—a fearsome, mostly waterless land of rock and heat, sand dunes and quicksand. cactus, thornbush, scorpion, rattlesnake, and agoraphobic distances. To those who see our land in that manner, the best reply is, yes, you are right, it is a dangerous and terrible place. Enter at your own risk. Carry water. Avoid the noon-day sun. Try to ignore the vultures. Pray frequently.
— Edward Abbey
The Journey Home
Science quotes on:  |  Appear (55)  |  Avoid (34)  |  Barren (9)  |  Best (129)  |  Cactus (3)  |  Canyon (8)  |  Carry (35)  |  Country (121)  |  Dangerous (45)  |  Desert (27)  |  Distance (54)  |  Dune (3)  |  Enter (20)  |  Frequently (13)  |  Heat (90)  |  Hostile (4)  |  Ignore (22)  |  Inspire (35)  |  Land (83)  |  Love (164)  |  Manner (35)  |  Place (111)  |  Pray (13)  |  Repellent (2)  |  Reply (18)  |  Right (144)  |  Risk (29)  |  Rock (107)  |  Sand (25)  |  See (197)  |  Sun (211)  |  Terrible (14)  |  Thornbush (2)  |  Try (103)  |  Vulture (5)  |  Water (244)

The idea of wilderness needs no defense, it only needs defenders.
— Edward Abbey
In 'Shadows from the Big Woods', The Journey Home: Some Words in Defense of the American West (1977), 229.
Science quotes on:  |  Conservation (139)  |  Defender (3)  |  Defense (15)  |  Idea (440)  |  Need (211)  |  Wilderness (28)

This is the most beautiful place on Earth. There are many such places. Every man, every woman, carries in heart and mind the image of the ideal place, the right place, the one true home, known or unknown, actual or visionary.
— Edward Abbey
Opening sentences in 'The First morning', Desert Solitaire (1968,1988), 1.
Science quotes on:  |  Actual (34)  |  Beautiful (81)  |  Carry (35)  |  Earth (487)  |  Heart (110)  |  Home (58)  |  Ideal (52)  |  Image (38)  |  Know (321)  |  Man (345)  |  Mind (544)  |  Place (111)  |  Right (144)  |  True (120)  |  Unknown (87)  |  Visionary (5)  |  Woman (94)

We must learn to think not only logically, but bio-logically.
— Edward Abbey
In One Life at a Time, Please (1988), 68.
Science quotes on:  |  Biology (150)  |  Ecology (55)  |  Learn (160)  |  Logical (20)  |  Think (205)

What is the purpose of the giant sequoia tree? The purpose of the giant sequoia tree is to provide shade for the tiny titmouse.
— Edward Abbey
In 'Philosophy, Religion, and So Forth', A Voice Crying in the Wilderness (1989), 12.
Science quotes on:  |  Giant (28)  |  Provide (48)  |  Purpose (138)  |  Sequoia (4)  |  Shade (12)  |  Tiny (25)  |  Tree (143)

Where, precisely, is the location of—a rainbow? In the air? In the eye? In between? Or somewhere else?
— Edward Abbey
In 'Philosophy, Religion, and So Forth', A Voice Crying in the Wilderness (1989), 11.
Science quotes on:  |  Air (151)  |  Eye (159)  |  Location (5)  |  Precise (17)  |  Rainbow (8)

Who needs astrology? The wise man gets by on fortune cookies.
— Edward Abbey
In 'Philosophy, Religion, and So Forth', A Voice Crying in the Wilderness (1989), 3.
Science quotes on:  |  Astrology (35)  |  Cookie (2)  |  Fortune (23)  |  Need (211)  |  Wise (43)

Why administrators are respected and school-teachers are not: An administrator is paid a lot for doing very little, while a teacher is paid very little for doing a lot.
— Edward Abbey
In 'Money Et Cetera', A Voice Crying in the Wilderness (Vox Clamantis in Deserto) (1989), 101.
Science quotes on:  |  Administrator (6)  |  Little (126)  |  Lot (23)  |  Pay (30)  |  Respect (57)  |  Teacher (90)

With the neutron bomb, which destroys life but not property, capitalism has found the weapon of its dreams.
— Edward Abbey
In 'Money Et Cetera', A Voice Crying in the Wilderness (Vox Clamantis in Deserto) (1989), 100.
Science quotes on:  |  Capitalism (7)  |  Destroy (63)  |  Dream (92)  |  Find (248)  |  Life (917)  |  Property (96)  |  Weapon (57)


Carl Sagan Thumbnail In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion. (1987) -- Carl Sagan
Quotations by: • Albert Einstein • Isaac Newton • Lord Kelvin • Charles Darwin • Srinivasa Ramanujan • Carl Sagan • Florence Nightingale • Thomas Edison • Aristotle • Marie Curie • Benjamin Franklin • Winston Churchill • Galileo Galilei • Sigmund Freud • Robert Bunsen • Louis Pasteur • Theodore Roosevelt • Abraham Lincoln • Ronald Reagan • Leonardo DaVinci • Michio Kaku • Karl Popper • Johann Goethe • Robert Oppenheimer • Charles Kettering  ... (more people)

Quotations about: • Atomic  Bomb • Biology • Chemistry • Deforestation • Engineering • Anatomy • Astronomy • Bacteria • Biochemistry • Botany • Conservation • Dinosaur • Environment • Fractal • Genetics • Geology • History of Science • Invention • Jupiter • Knowledge • Love • Mathematics • Measurement • Medicine • Natural Resource • Organic Chemistry • Physics • Physician • Quantum Theory • Research • Science and Art • Teacher • Technology • Universe • Volcano • Virus • Wind Power • Women Scientists • X-Rays • Youth • Zoology  ... (more topics)
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- 100 -
Sophie Germain
Gertrude Elion
Ernest Rutherford
James Chadwick
Marcel Proust
William Harvey
Johann Goethe
John Keynes
Carl Gauss
Paul Feyerabend
- 90 -
Antoine Lavoisier
Lise Meitner
Charles Babbage
Ibn Khaldun
Euclid
Ralph Emerson
Robert Bunsen
Frederick Banting
Andre Ampere
Winston Churchill
- 80 -
John Locke
Bronislaw Malinowski
Bible
Thomas Huxley
Alessandro Volta
Erwin Schrodinger
Wilhelm Roentgen
Louis Pasteur
Bertrand Russell
Jean Lamarck
- 70 -
Samuel Morse
John Wheeler
Nicolaus Copernicus
Robert Fulton
Pierre Laplace
Humphry Davy
Thomas Edison
Lord Kelvin
Theodore Roosevelt
Carolus Linnaeus
- 60 -
Francis Galton
Linus Pauling
Immanuel Kant
Martin Fischer
Robert Boyle
Karl Popper
Paul Dirac
Avicenna
James Watson
William Shakespeare
- 50 -
Stephen Hawking
Niels Bohr
Nikola Tesla
Rachel Carson
Max Planck
Henry Adams
Richard Dawkins
Werner Heisenberg
Alfred Wegener
John Dalton
- 40 -
Pierre Fermat
Edward Wilson
Johannes Kepler
Gustave Eiffel
Giordano Bruno
JJ Thomson
Thomas Kuhn
Leonardo DaVinci
Archimedes
David Hume
- 30 -
Andreas Vesalius
Rudolf Virchow
Richard Feynman
James Hutton
Alexander Fleming
Emile Durkheim
Benjamin Franklin
Robert Oppenheimer
Robert Hooke
Charles Kettering
- 20 -
Carl Sagan
James Maxwell
Marie Curie
Rene Descartes
Francis Crick
Hippocrates
Michael Faraday
Srinivasa Ramanujan
Francis Bacon
Galileo Galilei
- 10 -
Aristotle
John Watson
Rosalind Franklin
Michio Kaku
Isaac Asimov
Charles Darwin
Sigmund Freud
Albert Einstein
Florence Nightingale
Isaac Newton



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