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Home > Dictionary of Science Quotations > Scientist Names Index H > Heinrich Hertz Quotes

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Heinrich Hertz
(22 Feb 1857 - 1 Jan 1894)

German physicist.


Science Quotes by Heinrich Hertz (9 quotes)

I also require much time to ponder over the matters themselves, and particularly the principles of mechanics (as the very words: force, time, space, motion indicate) can occupy one severely enough; likewise, in mathematics, the meaning of imaginary quantities, of the infinitesimally small and infinitely large and similar matters.
— Heinrich Hertz
In Davis Baird, R.I.G. Hughes and Alfred Nordmann, Heinrich Hertz: Classical Physicist, Modern Philosopher (1998), 159.
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I am here to support the assertion that light of every kind is itself an electrical phenomenon—the light of the sun, the light of a candle, the light of a glowworm.
— Heinrich Hertz
From Lecture (20 Sep 1889) delivered to the German Association for the Advancement of Natural Science and Medicine, Heidelberg, 'On the Relations Between Light and Electricity', Miscellaneous Papers (1896), 313, as translated by D.E. Jones and G.A. Schott.
Science quotes on:  |  Assertion (32)  |  Candle (30)  |  Electrical (57)  |  Kind (557)  |  Light (607)  |  Phenomenon (318)  |  Sun (385)  |  Support (147)

I grow increasingly aware, and in more ways than expected that I am at the center of my own field; and whether it be folly or wisdom, it is a very pleasant feeling.
— Heinrich Hertz
In Davis Baird, R.I.G. Hughes and Alfred Nordmann, Heinrich Hertz: Classical Physicist, Modern Philosopher (1998), 1.
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In my work I now have the comfortable feeling that I am so to speak on my own ground and territory and almost certainly not competing in an anxious race and that I shall not suddenly read in the literature that someone else had done it all long ago. It is really at this point that the pleasure of research begins, when one is, so to speak, alone with nature and no longer worries about human opinions, views and demands. To put it in a way that is more learned than clear: the philological aspect drops out and only the philosophical remains.
— Heinrich Hertz
In Davis Baird, R.I.G. Hughes and Alfred Nordmann, Heinrich Hertz: Classical Physicist, Modern Philosopher (1998), 157.
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Maxwell's theory is Maxwell's system of equations.
— Heinrich Hertz
Electric Waves (1893), 21.
Science quotes on:  |  Equation (132)  |  Maxwell (42)  |  System (537)  |  Theory (970)

One cannot escape the feeling that these mathematical formulas have an independent existence and an intelligence of their own, that they are wiser that we are, wiser even than their discoverers, that we get more out of them than was originally put into them.
— Heinrich Hertz
Quoted, without citation, in Men of Mathematics (1937), Vol. 2, 16.
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Our confused wish finds expression in the confused question as to the nature of force and electricity. But the answer which we want is not really an answer to this question. It is not by finding out more and fresh relations and connections that it can be answered; but by removing the contradictions existing between those already known, and thus perhaps by reducing their number. When these painful contradictions are removed, the question as to the nature of force will not have been answered; but our minds, no longer vexed, will cease to ask illegitimate questions.
— Heinrich Hertz
Principles of Mechanics (1899), 7-8.
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Outside our consciousness there lies the cold and alien world of actual things. Between the two stretches the narrow borderland of the senses. No communication between the two worlds is possible excepting across the narrow strip. For a proper understanding of ourselves and of the world, it is of the highest importance that this borderland should be thoroughly explored.
— Heinrich Hertz
Keynote Address, a tribute to Helmholtz, at the Imperial Palace, Berlin (Aug 1891). Cited in Davis Baird, R.I.G. Hughes and Alfred Nordmann, Heinrich Hertz: Classical Physicist, Modern Philosopher (1998), 157.
Science quotes on:  |  Actual (117)  |  Actuality (6)  |  Alien (34)  |  Borderland (6)  |  Cold (112)  |  Coldness (2)  |  Communication (94)  |  Consciousness (123)  |  Exploration (134)  |  Importance (286)  |  Lie (364)  |  Narrow (84)  |  Ourselves (245)  |  Outside (141)  |  Possible (552)  |  Proper (144)  |  Reality (261)  |  Sense (770)  |  Strip (6)  |  Thing (1915)  |  Thoroughly (67)  |  Two (937)  |  Understanding (513)  |  World (1774)

The most direct, and in a sense the most important, problem which our conscious knowledge of Nature should enable us to solve is the anticipation of future events, so that we may arrange our present affairs in accordance with such anticipation. As a basis for the solution of this problem we always make use of our knowledge of events which have already occurred, obtained by chance observation or by prearranged experiment.
— Heinrich Hertz
In Heinrich Hertz, D.E. Jones (trans.) and J.T. Walley (trans.), 'Introduction', The Principles of Mechanics (1899), 1.
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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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