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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 D > Benjamin Disraeli Quotes

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Benjamin Disraeli
(21 Dec 1804 - 19 Apr 1881)

English Prime Minister and novelist who was twice the prime minister of Britain (1868 and 1874-80). He modernized the Conservative Party and was driven by ideals of democracy, social reform and the expansion of the British Empire. Disraeli wrote his first novel, a political satire, in 1824, and wrote other political and social novels throughout his life. In 1876 Disraeli became a member of the House of Lords as the 1st (and only) Earl of Beaconsfield.

Science Quotes by Benjamin Disraeli (27 quotes)

A nation has a fixed quantity of invention, and it will make itself felt.
— Benjamin Disraeli
Endymion (1880), 195.
Science quotes on:  |  Invention (311)

As a general rule, the most successful man in life is the man who has the best information.
— Benjamin Disraeli
Endymion (1880), 156.
Science quotes on:  |  Information (115)  |  Success (234)

How much has happened in these fifty years—a period more remarkable than any, I will venture to say, in the annals of mankind. I am not thinking of the rise and fall of Empires, the change of dynasties, the establishment of Governments. I am thinking of those revolutions of science which have had much more effect than any political causes, which have changed the position and prospects of mankind more than all the conquests and all the codes and all the legislators that ever lived.
— Benjamin Disraeli
Banquet speech, Glasgow. In Nature (27 Nov 1873), 9, 71.
Science quotes on:  |  Annal (3)  |  Cause (269)  |  Change (347)  |  Code (14)  |  Conquest (17)  |  Dynasty (7)  |  Effect (157)  |  Empire (13)  |  Establishment (33)  |  Fall (112)  |  Government (90)  |  Legislator (4)  |  Mankind (232)  |  Politics (93)  |  Position (69)  |  Prospect (22)  |  Revolution (68)  |  Rise (70)  |  Science (1939)  |  Thinking (227)

I would paint what has not been unhappily called the psychological character.
— Benjamin Disraeli
Science quotes on:  |  Character (107)  |  Paint (20)  |  Psychology (133)  |  Unhappy (7)

It is a vulgar belief that our astronomical knowledge dates only from the recent century when it was rescued from the monks who imprisoned Galileo; but Hipparchus … who among other achievements discovered the precession of the eqinoxes, ranks with the Newtons and the Keplers; and Copernicus, the modern father of our celestial science, avows himself, in his famous work, as only the champion of Pythagoras, whose system he enforces and illustrates. Even the most modish schemes of the day on the origin of things, which captivate as much by their novelty as their truth, may find their precursors in ancient sages, and after a careful analysis of the blended elements of imagination and induction which charaterise the new theories, they will be found mainly to rest on the atom of Epicurus and the monad of Thales. Scientific, like spiritual truth, has ever from the beginning been descending from heaven to man.
— Benjamin Disraeli
Lothair (1879), preface, xvii.
Science quotes on:  |  Astronomy (193)  |  Atom (272)  |  Nicolaus Copernicus (47)  |  Epicurus (6)  |  Galileo Galilei (120)  |  Hipparchus (3)  |  Imagination (254)  |  Imprison (10)  |  Johannes Kepler (87)  |  Sir Isaac Newton (311)  |  Pythagoras (33)  |  Thales (9)  |  Theory (661)

It is remarkable that when great discoveries are effected, their simplicity always seems to detract from their originality: on these occasions we are reminded of the egg of Columbus!
— Benjamin Disraeli
Curiosities of Literature (1824), Vol. 3, 277-278.
Science quotes on:  |  Detract (2)  |  Discovery (660)  |  Originality (18)  |  Simplicity (141)

Knowledge must be gained by ourselves. Mankind may supply us with facts; but the results, even if they agree with previous ones, must be the work of our own minds.
— Benjamin Disraeli
The Young Duke (1831), 163-4.
Science quotes on:  |  Fact (688)  |  Knowledge (1244)

Man is not the creature of circumstances, circumstances are the creatures of man. We are free agents, and man is more powerful than matter.
— Benjamin Disraeli
Science quotes on:  |  Agent (31)  |  Circumstance (62)  |  Creature (148)  |  Free (82)  |  Matter (322)  |  Powerful (62)

Men moralise among ruins.
— Benjamin Disraeli
Science quotes on:  |  Archaeology (45)  |  Ruin (25)

Modern science has vindicated the natural equality of man.
— Benjamin Disraeli
Sybil: Or, the Two Nations (1907), 263
Science quotes on:  |  Equality (21)  |  Man (366)

Nature is stronger than education.
— Benjamin Disraeli
Contarini Fleming (1853), 59.
Science quotes on:  |  Education (314)  |  Nature (1154)

No one for a moment can pretend that printing is so great a discovery as writing, or algebra as a language.
— Benjamin Disraeli
Lothair (1879), preface, xvii.
Science quotes on:  |  Algebra (79)  |  Printing (13)

Scientific, like spiritual truth, has ever from the beginning been descending from heaven to man.
— Benjamin Disraeli
In James Wood, Dictionary of Quotations from Ancient and Modern, English and Foreign Sources (1893), 383:6.
Science quotes on:  |  Truth (881)

Seeing much, suffering much, and studying much are the three pillars of learning.
— Benjamin Disraeli
In Hialmer Day Gould, New Practical Spelling (1905), 14.
Science quotes on:  |  Learn (255)  |  Pillar (9)  |  See (354)  |  Study (434)  |  Suffer (39)

Success is the child of audacity.
— Benjamin Disraeli
The Wonderous Tale of Alroy: The Rise of Iskander (1833), Vol. 2, 149.
Science quotes on:  |  Success (234)

The greatest good you can do for another is not just share your riches, but reveal to them their own.
— Benjamin Disraeli
Science quotes on:  |  Good (311)  |  Great (469)  |  Reveal (43)  |  Riches (12)  |  Share (45)

The pursuit of science leads only to the insoluble.
— Benjamin Disraeli
Science quotes on:  |  Insoluble (14)  |  Lead (150)  |  Pursuit (72)  |  Science (1939)

The question is this: Is man an ape or an angel? I, my lord, am on the side of the angels.
[Debating Darwin's Origin of Species.]
— Benjamin Disraeli
Speech at the Diocesan Conference, Oxford (1864), chaired by Bishop Wilberforce. Quoted in James Anthony Froude, Lord Beaconsfield (4th ed. 1890), 176.
Science quotes on:  |  Angel (30)  |  Ape (41)  |  Evolution (523)  |  Man (366)  |  Origin Of Species (40)

The world is devoted to physical science, because it believes theses discoveries will increase its capacity of luxury and self-indulgence. But the pursuit of science only leads to the insoluble.
— Benjamin Disraeli
Lothair (1879), 70.
Science quotes on:  |  Solution (195)

There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.
— Benjamin Disraeli
Attributed to Disraeli in Mark Twain's Autobiography (1924), Vol. 1, 246. However, this attribution is the only reference that Disraeli made this statement.
Science quotes on:  |  Statistics (144)

Time is precious, but truth is more precious than time.
— Benjamin Disraeli
Speech to the Royal and Central Bucks Agricultural Association, Aylesbury (21 Sep 1865). Wit and wisdom of Benjamin Disraeli, collected from his writings and speeches (1881), 356.
Science quotes on:  |  Truth (881)

What are the most brilliant of our chymical discoveries compared with the invention of fire and the metals?
— Benjamin Disraeli
Lothair (1879), preface, xvii.
Science quotes on:  |  Chemistry (242)  |  Fire (130)  |  Metal (41)

What Art was to the ancient world, Science is to the modern: the distinctive faculty. In the minds of men the useful has succeeded to the beautiful. Instead of the city of the Violet Crown, a Lancashire village has expanded into a mighty region of factories and warehouses. Yet, rightly understood, Manchester is as great a human exploit; as Athens.
— Benjamin Disraeli
In Coningsby: Or The New Generation (1844), Vol. 2, Book 4, Ch.1, 2.
Science quotes on:  |  Science And Art (168)

What is the question now placed before society with a glib assurance the most astounding? The question is this—Is man an ape or an angel? My lord, I am on the side of the angels.
— Benjamin Disraeli
'Church and Queen', Five Speeches Delivered by the Rt. Hon. B. Disraeli, M.P. 1860-1864 (1865), 78.
Science quotes on:  |  Evolution (523)

What is wanted in architecture, as in so many things, is a man. ... One suggestion might be made—no profession in England has done its duty until it has furnished a victim. ... Even our boasted navy never achieved a great victory until we shot an admiral. Suppose an architect were hanged? Terror has its inspiration, as well as competition.
— Benjamin Disraeli
Tancred: Or, The New Crusade (1907), 112.
Science quotes on:  |  Architecture (41)

Why should one say that the machine does not live? It breathes, for its breath forms the atmosphere of some towns.
— Benjamin Disraeli
In Coningsby: Or The New Generation (1844), Vol. 2, Book 4, Ch.1, 7.
Science quotes on:  |  Air Pollution (4)  |  Atmosphere (73)  |  Breathe (32)  |  Life (1071)  |  Machine (151)  |  Town (23)

You know, all is development. The principle is perpetually going on. First, there was nothing, then there was something; then—I forget the next—I think there were shells, then fishes; then we came—let me see—did we come next? Never mind that; we came at last. And at the next change there will be something very superior to us—something with wings. Ah! That's it: we were fishes, and I believe we shall be crows.
— Benjamin Disraeli
Tancred: or, The New Crusade (1847), 124.
Science quotes on:  |  Evolution (523)

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
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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
Ralph Emerson
Robert Bunsen
Frederick Banting
Andre Ampere
Winston Churchill
- 80 -
John Locke
Bronislaw Malinowski
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
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
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
Michael Faraday
Srinivasa Ramanujan
Francis Bacon
Galileo Galilei
- 10 -
John Watson
Rosalind Franklin
Michio Kaku
Isaac Asimov
Charles Darwin
Sigmund Freud
Albert Einstein
Florence Nightingale
Isaac Newton

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