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Home > Dictionary of Science Quotations > Scientist Names Index L > Tom Lehrer Quotes

Tom Lehrer
(9 Apr 1928 - )

American mathematician and satirist who remains well-known for his witty, satirical songs that he performed and recorded in the 1950s-60s singing and accompanying himself on the piano.

Science Quotes by Tom Lehrer (5 quotes)

Gather round while I sing you of Wernher von Braun,
A man whose allegiance
Is ruled by expedience.
Call him a Nazi, he won't even frown.
“ha, Nazi sch-mazi,” says Wernher von Braun.
— Tom Lehrer
Stanza from song, 'Wernher von Braun' on record That Was the Year That Was (Jul 1965). Collected in script to musical, Tom Foolery: The Words and Music of Tom Lehrer (1986), 35.
Science quotes on:  |  Allegiance (4)  |  Wernher von Braun (29)  |  Call (769)  |  Expedience (2)  |  Frown (5)  |  Gather (72)  |  Gathering (23)  |  Man (2249)  |  Nazi (9)  |  Rule (295)  |  Say (984)  |  Sing (26)

In one word he told me the secret of success in mathematics: plagiarize only be sure always to call it please research.
— Tom Lehrer
In lyrics of his song 'Lobachevski' recorded on his first album Songs by Tom Lehrer (1953). First performed as part a musical revue, The Physical Revue (1951–1952).
Science quotes on:  |  Call (769)  |  Mathematics (1333)  |  Please (65)  |  Research (677)  |  Secret (195)  |  Success (303)  |  Tell (340)  |  Word (622)

There's antimony, arsenic, aluminium, selenium,
And hydrogen and oxygen and nitrogen and rhenium,
And nickel, neodymium, neptunium, germanium,
And iron, americium, ruthenium, uranium,
Europium, zirconium, lutetium, vanadium,
And lanthanum and osmium and astatine and radium,
And gold and protactinium and indium and gallium,
And iodine and thorium and thulium and thallium.
There's yttrium, ytterbium, actinium, rubidium,
And boron, gadolinium, niobium, iridium,
And strontium and silicon and silver and samarium,
And bismuth, bromine, lithium, beryllium and barium.
There's holmium and helium and hafnium and erbium,
And phosphorus and francium and fluorine and terbium,
And manganese and mercury, molybdenum, magnesium,
Dysprosium and scandium and cerium and cesium,
And lead, praseodymium and platinum, plutonium,
Palladium, promethium, potassium, polonium,
And tantalum, technetium, titanium, tellurium,
And cadmium and calcium and chromium and curium.
There's sulfur, californium and fermium, berkelium,
And also mendelevium, einsteinium, nobelium,
And argon, krypton, neon, radon, xenon, zinc and rhodium,
And chlorine, cobalt, carbon, copper, tungsten, tin and sodium.
These are the only ones of which the news has come to Harvard,
And there may be many others, but they haven't been discarvard.
[To the tune of I am the Very Model of a Modern Major General.]
— Tom Lehrer
Song, 'The Elements' (1959). In Tom Lehrer,Too Many Songs by Tom Lehrer: With Not Enough Drawings by Ronald Searle (1981), 151.
Science quotes on:  |  Aluminum (13)  |  Antimony (7)  |  Argon (3)  |  Arsenic (10)  |  Barium (4)  |  Beryllium (3)  |  Bismuth (7)  |  Boron (4)  |  Bromine (4)  |  Calcium (7)  |  Carbon (65)  |  Chlorine (15)  |  Chromium (2)  |  Cobalt (4)  |  Copper (25)  |  Element (310)  |  Erbium (2)  |  Fluorine (5)  |  Francium (2)  |  General (511)  |  Gold (98)  |  Helium (11)  |  Hydrogen (75)  |  Iodine (7)  |  Iridium (3)  |  Iron (96)  |  Lanthanum (2)  |  Lead (385)  |  Lithium (3)  |  Magnesium (4)  |  Major (83)  |  Manganese (2)  |  Mercury (49)  |  Model (102)  |  Modern (385)  |  Neon (4)  |  New (1217)  |  News (36)  |  Nickel (3)  |  Nitrogen (27)  |  Osmium (3)  |  Other (2236)  |  Oxygen (67)  |  Palladium (2)  |  Phosphorus (16)  |  Platinum (6)  |  Plutonium (4)  |  Polonium (5)  |  Potassium (11)  |  Radium (25)  |  Rhodium (2)  |  Selenium (2)  |  Silicon (4)  |  Silver (47)  |  Sodium (14)  |  Song (37)  |  Strontium (2)  |  Sulfur (5)  |  Tantalum (2)  |  Thorium (5)  |  Tin (18)  |  Titanium (2)  |  Tune (19)  |  Tungsten (2)  |  Uranium (20)  |  Xenon (5)  |  Yttrium (3)  |  Zinc (3)  |  Zirconium (2)

~~[Attributed]~~ Some of you may have met mathematicians and wondered how they got that way.
— Tom Lehrer
Webmaster has not yet been able to find verification in a primary print source. (Can you help?)
Science quotes on:  |  Mathematician (389)  |  Way (1216)  |  Wonder (236)

“Once the rockets are up
Who cares where they come down
That's not my department,”
Says Wernher von Braun.
— Tom Lehrer
Stanza from song, 'Wernher von Braun' on record That Was the Year That Was (Jul 1965). As cited in Michael J. Hogan and Thomas G. Paterson, Explaining the History of American Foreign Relations (2004), 91.
Science quotes on:  |  Wernher von Braun (29)  |  Care (186)  |  Department (92)  |  Down (455)  |  Rocket (43)  |  Satire (4)  |  Say (984)  |  Song (37)


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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