Celebrating 18 Years on the Web
TODAY IN SCIENCE HISTORY ®
Find science on or your birthday

Today in Science History - Quickie Quiz
Who said: “The conservation of natural resources is the fundamental problem. Unless we solve that problem it will avail us little to solve all others.”
more quiz questions >>
Home > Category Index for Science Quotations > Category Index C > Category: Cut

Cut Quotes (36 quotes)


A fear of intellectual inadequacy, of powerlessness before the tireless electronic wizards, has given rise to dozens of science-fiction fantasies of computer takeovers. ... Other scientists too are apprehensive. D. Raj Reddy, a computer scientist at Pittsburgh’s Carnegie-Mellon University, fears that universally available microcomputers could turn into formidable weapons. Among other things, says Reddy, sophisticated computers in the wrong hands could begin subverting a society by tampering with people’s relationships with their own computers—instructing the other computers to cut off telephone, bank and other services, for example.
Magazine
An early prediction of DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service), viruses and worms like Stuxnet. As stated, without further citation, in 'The Age of Miracle Chips', Time (20 Feb 1978), 44. The article introduces a special section on 'The Computer Society.' Please contact Webmaster if you know a primary source.
Science quotes on:  |  Apprehension (9)  |  Bank (8)  |  Computer (84)  |  Electronic (10)  |  Fantasy (7)  |  Fear (113)  |  Formidable (6)  |  Hand (103)  |  Inadequacy (4)  |  Instruction (51)  |  Intellectual (79)  |  Relationship (59)  |  Science Fiction (28)  |  Scientist (447)  |  Service (54)  |  Society (188)  |  Sophisticated (11)  |  Subvert (2)  |  Tamper (5)  |  Telephone (21)  |  Tireless (2)  |  Universal (70)  |  Weapon (57)  |  Wizard (3)  |  Wrong (116)

A paper cut — A tree's last laugh!
Anonymous
Adapted from the title of a web page.
Science quotes on:  |  Last (19)  |  Laugh (18)  |  Paper (52)  |  Paper Cut (2)  |  Tree (143)  |  Wound (10)

A paper cut — A tree's last revenge!
Anonymous
Title of a web page.
Science quotes on:  |  Last (19)  |  Paper (52)  |  Paper Cut (2)  |  Revenge (6)  |  Tree (143)  |  Wound (10)

An inventor is an opportunist, one who takes occasion by the hand; who, having seen where some want exists, successfully applies the right means to attain the desired end. The means may be largely, or even wholly, something already known, or there may be a certain originality or discovery in the means employed. But in every case the inventor uses the work of others. If I may use a metaphor, I should liken him to the man who essays the conquest of some virgin alp. At the outset he uses the beaten track, and, as he progresses in the ascent, he uses the steps made by those who have preceded him, whenever they lead in the right direction; and it is only after the last footprints have died out that he takes ice-axe in hand and cuts the remaining steps, few or many, that lift him to the crowning height which is his goal.
In Kenneth Raydon Swan, Sir Joseph Swan (1946), 44.
Science quotes on:  |  Alp (2)  |  Application (117)  |  Ascent (5)  |  Attainment (35)  |  Beaten Track (2)  |  Conquest (13)  |  Crown (19)  |  Death (270)  |  Desire (101)  |  Direction (56)  |  Discovery (591)  |  Footprint (12)  |  Goal (81)  |  Height (24)  |  Inventor (49)  |  Knowledge (1128)  |  Leading (14)  |  Metaphor (19)  |  Occasion (12)  |  Opportunist (3)  |  Originality (14)  |  Other (25)  |  Outset (4)  |  Preceded (2)  |  Progress (317)  |  Step (67)  |  Success (202)  |  Use (70)  |  Virgin (4)  |  Want (120)  |  Work (457)

But we must take other steps, such as increasing conservation, developing an ethanol industry, and increasing CAFE standards if we are to make our country safer by cutting our reliance on foreign oil.
Jim Costa
…...
Science quotes on:  |  Conservation (139)  |  Country (121)  |  Develop (55)  |  Ethanol (2)  |  Foreign (20)  |  Increase (107)  |  Industry (91)  |  Oil (37)  |  Reliance (9)  |  Safe (15)  |  Standard (41)  |  Step (67)

For books [Charles Darwin] had no respect, but merely considered them as tools to be worked with. ... he would cut a heavy book in half, to make it more convenient to hold. He used to boast that he had made Lyell publish the second edition of one of his books in two volumes, instead of in one, by telling him how ho had been obliged to cut it in half. ... his library was not ornamental, but was striking from being so evidently a working collection of books.
In Charles Darwin: His Life Told in an Autobiographical Chapter, and in a Selected Series of his Published Letters (1908), 96.
Science quotes on:  |  Boast (12)  |  Book (181)  |  Collection (38)  |  Convenience (25)  |  Charles Darwin (284)  |  Half (35)  |  Heavy (13)  |  Library (37)  |  Sir Charles Lyell (41)  |  Ornament (12)  |  Respect (57)  |  Tool (70)  |  Volume (13)

I am almost thanking God that I was never educated, for it seems to me that 999 of those who are so, expensively and laboriously, have lost all before they arrive at my age—& remain like Swift's Stulbruggs—cut and dry for life, making no use of their earlier-gained treasures:—whereas, I seem to be on the threshold of knowledge.
In Vivien Noakes, Edward Lear: the Life of a Wanderer (1969), 22.
Science quotes on:  |  Age (137)  |  Biography (227)  |  Dry (12)  |  Education (280)  |  Expense (10)  |  Gain (48)  |  Knowledge (1128)  |  Labour (36)  |  Life (917)  |  Jonathan Swift (22)  |  Thank (7)  |  Threshold (7)  |  Treasure (35)

I beg this committee to recognize that knowledge is not simply another commodity. On the contrary. Knowledge is never used up, it increases by diffusion, and grows by dispersion. Knowledge and information cannot be quantitatively assessed, as a percentage of the G.N.P. Any willful cut in our resources of knowledge is an act of self-destruction.
While Librarian of Congress, asking a House Appropriations subcommittee to restore money cut from the library’s budget. As reported in New York Times (23 Feb 1986).
Science quotes on:  |  Commodity (3)  |  Diffusion (7)  |  Grow (66)  |  Increase (107)  |  Information (102)  |  Knowledge (1128)  |  Quantitative (15)  |  Resource (47)  |  Willful (3)

I came by the horror naturally. Surgery is the one branch of medicine that is the most violent. After all, it’s violent to take up a knife and cut open a person’s body and rummage around with your hands. I think I was attracted to the horrific.
As quoted in Randy Hutter Epstein, 'Richard Selzer, Who Fictionalized Medicine’s Absurdity and Gore, Dies at 87', New York Times (15 Jun 2016). Explaining why his first fiction writing was horror stories.
Science quotes on:  |  Attracted (3)  |  Body (193)  |  Branch (61)  |  Hand (103)  |  Horror (6)  |  Knife (10)  |  Medicine (322)  |  Natural (128)  |  Person (114)  |  Surgery (39)  |  Think (205)  |  Violent (15)

I used to worry that all the trees in the jungle would be cut down to make paper for their reports on how to save the rainforest!
Quoted in Binka Le Breton (1993), Voices From the Amazon (1993), 26. As cited in Lykke E. Andersen (ed.), The Dynamics of Deforestation and Economic Growth in the Brazilian Amazon (2002), 1, captioning Nick Birch as a “Forester in Rondonia.”
Science quotes on:  |  Deforestation (39)  |  Jungle (13)  |  Paper (52)  |  Rain Forest (21)  |  Report (31)  |  Save (46)  |  Tree (143)  |  Worry (27)

I will give no deadly medicine to any one if asked, nor suggest any such counsel; and in like manner I will not give any woman the instrument to procure abortion. … I will not cut a person who is suffering with stone, but will leave this to be done by men who are practitioners of such work.
From 'The Oath', as translated by Francis Adams in The Genuine Works of Hippocrates (1849), Vol. 2, 780.
Science quotes on:  |  Ask (99)  |  Counsel (5)  |  Deadly (4)  |  Give (117)  |  Instrument (73)  |  Leave (63)  |  Manner (35)  |  Medicine (322)  |  Person (114)  |  Procure (4)  |  Reproduction (57)  |  Stone (57)  |  Suffer (25)  |  Suggest (15)  |  Surgeon (43)  |  Woman (94)

In 1906 I indulged my temper by hurling invectives at Neo-Darwinians in the following terms. “I really do not wish to be abusive [to Neo-Darwinians]; but when I think of these poor little dullards, with their precarious hold of just that corner of evolution that a blackbeetle can understand—with their retinue of twopenny-halfpenny Torquemadas wallowing in the infamies of the vivisector’s laboratory, and solemnly offering us as epoch-making discoveries their demonstrations that dogs get weaker and die if you give them no food; that intense pain makes mice sweat; and that if you cut off a dog’s leg the three-legged dog will have a four-legged puppy, I ask myself what spell has fallen on intelligent and humane men that they allow themselves to be imposed on by this rabble of dolts, blackguards, imposters, quacks, liars, and, worst of all, credulous conscientious fools.”
In Back to Methuselah: A Metabiological Pentateuch (1921), lxi
Science quotes on:  |  Abuse (9)  |  Conscientious (2)  |  Credulity (8)  |  Death (270)  |  Demonstration (51)  |  Discovery (591)  |  Dog (39)  |  Dullard (2)  |  Evolution (482)  |  Fool (70)  |  Humane (5)  |  Impostor (3)  |  Infamy (2)  |  Inquisitor (6)  |  Intelligence (138)  |  Leg (13)  |  Liar (5)  |  Mouse (24)  |  Pain (82)  |  Quack (12)  |  Starvation (9)  |  Sweat (12)  |  Temper (6)  |  Understanding (317)  |  Weakening (2)

In a library we are surrounded by many hundreds of dear friends, but they are imprisoned by an enchanter in these paper and leathern boxes; and though they know us, and have been waiting two, ten, or twenty centuries for us,—some of them,—and are eager to give us a sign and unbosom themselves, it is the law of their limbo that they must not speak until spoken to; and as the enchanter has dressed them, like battalions of infantry, in coat and jacket of one cut, by the thousand and ten thousand, your chance of hitting on the right one is to be computed by the arithmetical rule of Permutation and Combination,—not a choice out of three caskets, but out of half a million caskets, all alike.
In essay 'Books', collected in Society and Solitude (1870, 1871), 171
Science quotes on:  |  Alike (10)  |  Arithmetic (68)  |  Battalion (2)  |  Box (8)  |  Century (94)  |  Chance (122)  |  Choice (64)  |  Coat (4)  |  Combination (69)  |  Compute (10)  |  Dressed (2)  |  Eager (7)  |  Friend (63)  |  Hit (14)  |  Hundred (46)  |  Imprison (8)  |  Jacket (2)  |  Law (418)  |  Library (37)  |  Million (89)  |  Paper (52)  |  Permutation (2)  |  Right (144)  |  Rule (135)  |  Sign (36)  |  Speak (49)  |  Surround (17)  |  Thousand (106)  |  Three (10)  |  Waiting (9)

In summary, very large populations may differentiate rapidly, but their sustained evolution will be at moderate or slow rates and will be mainly adaptive. Populations of intermediate size provide the best conditions for sustained progressive and branching evolution, adaptive in its main lines, but accompanied by inadaptive fluctuations, especially in characters of little selective importance. Small populations will be virtually incapable of differentiation or branching and will often be dominated by random inadaptive trends and peculiarly liable to extinction, but will be capable of the most rapid evolution as long as this is not cut short by extinction.
Tempo and Mode in Evolution (1944), 70-1.
Science quotes on:  |  Accompany (18)  |  Adaptation (40)  |  Branch (61)  |  Capability (35)  |  Character (82)  |  Condition (119)  |  Differentiation (17)  |  Domination (12)  |  Evolution (482)  |  Extinction (55)  |  Fluctuation (7)  |  Importance (183)  |  Incapable (11)  |  Intermediate (16)  |  Large (82)  |  Liability (5)  |  Peculiarity (15)  |  Population (71)  |  Progressive (13)  |  Provision (15)  |  Random (21)  |  Rapidity (14)  |  Selection (27)  |  Size (47)  |  Small (97)  |  Summary (4)  |  Sustain (13)  |  Trend (16)

It was on the 25th November 1740 that I cut the first polyp. I put the two parts in a flat glass, which only contained water to the height of four to five lignes. It was thus easy for me to observe these portions of the polyp with a fairly powerful lens.
I shall indicate farther on the precautions I took in making my experiments on these cut polyps and the technique I adopted to cut them. It will suffice to say here that I cut the polyp concerned transversely, a little nearer the anterior than the posterior end. The first part was thus a little shorter than the second.
The instant that I cut the polyp, the two parts contracted so that at first they only appeared like two little grains of green matter at the bottom of the glass in which I put them—for green, as I have already said, is the colour of the first polyps that I possessed. The two parts expanded on the same day on which I separated them. They were very easy to distinguish from one another. The first had its anterior end adorned with the fine threads that serve the polyp as legs and arms, which the second had none.
The extensions of the first part was not the only sign of life that it gave on the same day that it was separated from the other. I saw it move its arms; and the next day, the first time I came to observe it, I found that it had changed its position; and shortly afterwards I saw it take a step. The second part was extended as on the previous day and in the same place. I shook the glass a little to see if it were still alive. This movement made it contract, from which I judged that it was alive. Shortly afterwards it extended again. On the following days I .’ saw the same thing.
Mémoires, pour servir à l'histoire d'un genre de polyps d'eau douce à bras en forme de cornes (1744), 7-16. Trans. John R. Baker, in Abraham Trembley of Geneva: Scientist and Philosopher 1710-1784 (1952), 31.
Science quotes on:  |  Anterior (4)  |  Arm (17)  |  Experiment (543)  |  Extension (20)  |  Leg (13)  |  Lens (11)  |  Life (917)  |  Movement (65)  |  Observation (418)  |  Polyp (4)  |  Precaution (4)

Let us award a just, a brilliant homage to those rare men whom nature has endowed with the precious privilege of arranging a thousand isolated facts, of making seductive theories spring from them; but let us not forget to state, that the scythe of the reaper had cut the stalks before one had thought of uniting them into sheaves!
In François Arago, trans. by William Henry Smyth, Baden Powell and Robert Grant, 'Fourier', Biographies of Distinguished Scientific Men (1859), Vol. 1, 409.
Science quotes on:  |  Arranging (3)  |  Endowment (7)  |  Fact (609)  |  Homage (3)  |  Isolated (12)  |  Nature (1029)  |  Precious (22)  |  Privilege (16)  |  Rare (31)  |  Reaper (2)  |  Seductive (4)  |  Sheaf (2)  |  Spring (47)  |  Stalk (4)  |  Theory (582)  |  Thought (374)  |  Thousand (106)  |  Uniting (4)

Life is a phenomenon sui generis, a primal fact in its own right, like energy. Cut flesh or wood how you like, hack at them in a baffled fury—you cannot find life itself, you can only see what it built out of the lifeless dust.
In An Almanac for Moderns (1935), 393.
Science quotes on:  |  Baffled (3)  |  Built (7)  |  Dust (42)  |  Find (248)  |  Flesh (22)  |  Fury (5)  |  Hack (3)  |  Life (917)  |  Lifeless (10)  |  Seeing (48)  |  Wood (33)

Man, the cutting edge of terrestrial life, has no rational alternative but to expand the environmental and resource base beyond earth.
On the 'extraterrestrial imperative,' recalled on his death 11 Dec 84
Science quotes on:  |  Alternative (22)  |  Base (43)  |  Beyond (65)  |  Earth (487)  |  Edge (16)  |  Environmental (8)  |  Expand (14)  |  Life (917)  |  Rational (42)  |  Resource (47)  |  Terrestrial (14)

Of all the constituents of the human body, bone is the hardest, the driest, the earthiest, and the coldest; and, excepting only the teeth, it is devoid of sensation. God, the great Creator of all things, formed its substance to this specification with good reason, intending it to be like a foundation for the whole body; for in the fabric of the human body bones perform the same function as do walls and beams in houses, poles in tents, and keels and ribs in boats.
Bones Differentiated by Function
Some bones, by reason of their strength, form as it were props for the body; these include the tibia, the femur, the spinal vertebrae, and most of the bony framework. Others are like bastions, defense walls, and ramparts, affording natural protection to other parts; examples are the skull, the spines and transverse processes of the vertebrae, the breast bone, the ribs. Others stand in front of the joints between certain bones, to ensure that the joint does not move too loosely or bend to too acute an angle. This is the function of the tiny bones, likened by the professors of anatomy to the size of a sesame seed, which are attached to the second internode of the thumb, the first internode of the other four fingers and the first internodes of the five toes. The teeth, on the other hand, serve specifically to cut, crush, pound and grind our food, and similarly the two ossicles in the organ of hearing perform a specifically auditory function.
From De Humani Corporis Fabrica Libri Septem: (1543), Book I, 1, as translated by William Frank Richardson, in 'Nature of Bone; Function of Bones', On The Fabric of the Human Body: Book I: The Bones and Cartilages (1998), 1.
Science quotes on:  |  Acute (6)  |  Anatomy (59)  |  Angle (15)  |  Attached (2)  |  Bastion (2)  |  Beam (9)  |  Bend (8)  |  Boat (13)  |  Body (193)  |  Bone (57)  |  Breast (6)  |  Constituent (13)  |  Creator (40)  |  Crush (6)  |  Defense (15)  |  Devoid (5)  |  Differentiation (17)  |  Driest (2)  |  Exception (33)  |  Fabric (13)  |  Finger (38)  |  Food (139)  |  Form (210)  |  Foundation (75)  |  Framework (15)  |  Function (90)  |  God (454)  |  Grind (8)  |  Hand (103)  |  Hardest (2)  |  Hearing (27)  |  House (36)  |  Human (445)  |  Joint (11)  |  Keel (3)  |  Move (58)  |  Natural (128)  |  Organ (60)  |  Pole (14)  |  Pound (7)  |  Process (201)  |  Professor (39)  |  Prop (6)  |  Protection (23)  |  Reason (330)  |  Rib (4)  |  Seed (52)  |  Sensation (22)  |  Serve (34)  |  Sesame (2)  |  Size (47)  |  Skull (5)  |  Specification (5)  |  Spine (5)  |  Strength (63)  |  Substance (73)  |  Teeth (11)  |  Tent (4)  |  Thumb (8)  |  Toe (5)  |  Vertebra (4)  |  Wall (20)

Only after the last tree has been cut down. Only after the last river has been poisoned. Only after the last fish has been caught. Only then will you find that money cannot be eaten.
Cree
Cree Indian prophecy. Quoted by the United Nations Director for the Environment at a conference in Geneva. Recalled by a writer in Ann: Zoologische wetenschappen Issues 275-276 (1984), 16.
Science quotes on:  |  Cannot (8)  |  Catch (21)  |  Conservation (139)  |  Deforestation (39)  |  Eat (38)  |  Fish (85)  |  Food (139)  |  Last (19)  |  Money (125)  |  Poison (32)  |  River (68)  |  Tree (143)

Our intelligence has brought us far, but it has also brought us to the brink of total destruction. It cuts both ways, its application sometimes terrifies us, but it also reveals a humbling, sobering perspective of our cosmological home.
…...
Science quotes on:  |  Application (117)  |  Both (52)  |  Bring (53)  |  Brink (2)  |  Cosmological (4)  |  Destruction (80)  |  Far (77)  |  Home (58)  |  Humble (23)  |  Intelligence (138)  |  Perspective (15)  |  Reveal (32)  |  Sober (8)  |  Sometimes (27)  |  Terrify (9)  |  Total (29)

Physicians who cut, burn, stab, and rack the sick, demand a fee for it which they do not deserve to get.
Fragment R.P. 47c, quoted in John Burnet, Early Greek Philosophy (1908), 151.
Science quotes on:  |  Burn (29)  |  Demand (52)  |  Deserve (14)  |  Fee (9)  |  Physician (232)  |  Rack (4)  |  Sick (23)  |  Stab (3)

Researchers, with science as their authority, will be able to cut [animals] up, alive, into small pieces, drop them from a great height to see if they are shattered by the fall, or deprive them of sleep for sixteen days and nights continuously for the purposes of an iniquitous monograph... Animal trust, undeserved faith, when at last will you turn away from us? Shall we never tire of deceiving, betraying, tormenting animals before they cease to trust us?
…...
Science quotes on:  |  Alive (38)  |  Animal (309)  |  Authority (50)  |  Betray (7)  |  Cease (23)  |  Continuously (7)  |  Deceive (8)  |  Deprive (9)  |  Drop (27)  |  Faith (131)  |  Fall (89)  |  Great (300)  |  Height (24)  |  Monograph (3)  |  Night (73)  |  Piece (32)  |  Purpose (138)  |  Researcher (17)  |  Science (1699)  |  See (197)  |  Shatter (5)  |  Sleep (42)  |  Small (97)  |  Tire (5)  |  Torment (13)  |  Trust (40)  |  Turn (72)  |  Undeserved (2)

Science is a game—but a game with reality, a game with sharpened knives … If a man cuts a picture carefully into 1000 pieces, you solve the puzzle when you reassemble the pieces into a picture; in the success or failure, both your intelligences compete. In the presentation of a scientific problem, the other player is the good Lord. He has not only set the problem but also has devised the rules of the game—but they are not completely known, half of them are left for you to discover or to deduce. The experiment is the tempered blade which you wield with success against the spirits of darkness—or which defeats you shamefully. The uncertainty is how many of the rules God himself has permanently ordained, and how many apparently are caused by your own mental inertia, while the solution generally becomes possible only through freedom from its limitations.
Quoted in Walter Moore, Schrödinger: Life and Thought (1989), 348.
Science quotes on:  |  Blade (5)  |  Competition (26)  |  Darkness (25)  |  Deduction (49)  |  Defeat (13)  |  Discovery (591)  |  Experiment (543)  |  Failure (118)  |  Freedom (76)  |  Game (45)  |  Inertia (10)  |  Intelligence (138)  |  Knife (10)  |  Limitation (20)  |  Mind (544)  |  Ordain (3)  |  Picture (55)  |  Piece (32)  |  Presentation (12)  |  Problem (362)  |  Reality (140)  |  Rule (135)  |  Science (1699)  |  Sharp (12)  |  Solution (168)  |  Spirit (113)  |  Success (202)  |  Uncertainty (37)

Science, which cuts its way through the muddy pond of daily life without mingling with it, casts its wealth to right and left, but the puny boatmen do not know how to fish for it.
My Past and Thoughts: the Memoirs of Alexander Herzen (revised translation 1968, 1982), 594.
Science quotes on:  |  Cast (15)  |  Daily (19)  |  Fish (85)  |  Life (917)  |  Mud (14)  |  Pond (9)  |  Puny (5)  |  Science (1699)  |  Wealth (50)

Several times every day I observed the portions of the polyp with a magnifying glass. On the 4th December, that is to say on the ninth day after having cut the polyp, I seemed in the morning to be able to perceive, on the edges of the anterior end of the second part (the part that had neither head nor arms), three little points arising from those edges. They immediately made me think of the horns that serve as the legs and arms of the polyp. Nevertheless I did not want to decide at once that these were actually arms that were beginning to grow. Throughout the next day I continually observed these points: this excited me extremely, and awaited with impatience the moment when I should know with certainty what they were. At last, on the following day, they were so big that there was no longer any room for doubt that they were actually arms growing at the anterior extremity of this second part. The next day two more arms started to grow out, and a few days later three more. The second part thus had eight of them, and they were all in a short time as long as those of the first part, that is to say as long as those the polyp possessed before it was cut. I then no longer found any difference between the second part and a polyp that had never been cut. I had remarked the same thing about the first part since the day after the operation. When I observed them with the magnifying glass with all the attention of which I was capable, each of the two appeared perceptibly to be a complete polyp, and they performed all the functions that were known to me: they extended, contracted, and walked.
Mémoires, pour servir à l'histoire d'un genre de polyps d'eau douce à bras en forme de cornes (1744), 7-16. Trans. John R. Baker, in Abraham Trembley of Geneva: Scientist and Philosopher 1710-1784 (1952), 32.
Science quotes on:  |  Anterior (4)  |  Appeared (4)  |  Arm (17)  |  Attention (76)  |  Difference (208)  |  Doubt (121)  |  Edge (16)  |  Extremity (2)  |  Glass (35)  |  Knowledge (1128)  |  Leg (13)  |  Long (95)  |  Magnifying (2)  |  Observation (418)  |  Operation (96)  |  Perceive (18)  |  Performed (3)  |  Polyp (4)  |  Remark (14)  |  Room (29)

Talent, in difficult situations, strives to untie knots, which genius instantly cuts with one swift decision.
In 'Genius', Wellman’s Miscellany (Dec 1871), 4, No. 6, 203.
Science quotes on:  |  Decision (58)  |  Difficult (62)  |  Genius (186)  |  Instant (10)  |  Knot (4)  |  Situation (41)  |  Strive (35)  |  Swift (10)  |  Talent (49)

Thales thought that water was the primordial substance of all things. Heraclitus of Ephesus… thought that it was fire. Democritus and his follower Epicurus thought that it was the atoms, termed by our writers “bodies that cannot be cut up” or, by some “indivisibles.” The school of the Pythagoreans added air and the earthy to the water and fire. Hence, although Democritus did not in a strict sense name them, but spoke only of indivisible bodies, yet he seems to have meant these same elements, because when taken by themselves they cannot be harmed, nor are they susceptible of dissolution, nor can they be cut up into parts, but throughout time eternal they forever retain an infinite solidity.
Vitruvius
In De Architectura, Book 2, Chap 2, Sec. 1. As translated in Morris Hicky Morgan (trans.), Vitruvius: The Ten Books on Architecture (1914), 42.
Science quotes on:  |  Air (151)  |  Atom (251)  |  Democritus of Abdera (16)  |  Earth (487)  |  Element (129)  |  Epicurus (6)  |  Eternal (43)  |  Fire (117)  |  Heraclitus (14)  |  Indivisible (7)  |  Primordial (7)  |  Pythagoras (27)  |  Solid (34)  |  Substance (73)  |  Thales (7)  |  Water (244)

The research rat of the future allows experimentation without manipulation of the real world. This is the cutting edge of modeling technology.
…...
Science quotes on:  |  Allow (24)  |  Edge (16)  |  Experimentation (6)  |  Future (229)  |  Manipulation (9)  |  Modeling (2)  |  Rat (19)  |  Real World (8)  |  Research (517)  |  Technology (199)

The scientific world-picture vouchsafes a very complete understanding of all that happens–it makes it just a little too understandable. It allows you to imagine the total display as that of a mechanical clockwork which, for all that science knows, could go on just the same as it does, without there being consciousness, will, endeavor, pain and delight and responsibility connected with it–though they actually are. And the reason for this disconcerting situation is just this: that for the purpose of constructing the picture of the external world, we have used the greatly simplifying device of cutting our own personality out, removing it; hence it is gone, it has evaporated, it is ostensibly not needed.
…...
Science quotes on:  |  Actually (14)  |  Allow (24)  |  Clockwork (4)  |  Complete (43)  |  Connect (15)  |  Consciousness (71)  |  Construct (25)  |  Delight (51)  |  Device (24)  |  Disconcerting (2)  |  Display (22)  |  Endeavor (33)  |  Evaporate (3)  |  External (45)  |  Greatly (7)  |  Happen (63)  |  Imagine (40)  |  Know (321)  |  Little (126)  |  Mechanical (31)  |  Need (211)  |  Pain (82)  |  Personality (40)  |  Picture (55)  |  Purpose (138)  |  Reason (330)  |  Remove (18)  |  Responsibility (47)  |  Same (92)  |  Science (1699)  |  Scientific (169)  |  Simplify (6)  |  Situation (41)  |  Total (29)  |  Understand (189)  |  Understandable (4)  |  World (667)

The story is told of Lord Kelvin, a famous Scotch physicist of the last century, that after he had given a lecture on atoms and molecules, one of his students came to him with the question, “Professor, what is your idea of the structure of the atom.”
“What,” said Kelvin, “The structure of the atom? Why, don’t you know, the very word ‘atom’ means the thing that can’t be cut. How then can it have a structure?”
“That,” remarked the facetious young man, “shows the disadvantage of knowing Greek.”
As described in 'Assault on Atoms' (Read 23 Apr 1931 at Symposium—The Changing World) Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society (1931), 70, No. 3, 219.
Science quotes on:  |  Atom (251)  |  Century (94)  |  Disadvantage (8)  |  Facetious (2)  |  Greek (46)  |  Idea (440)  |  Baron William Thomson Kelvin (50)  |  Know (321)  |  Lecture (54)  |  Molecule (125)  |  Physicist (130)  |  Professor (39)  |  Question (315)  |  Scottish (2)  |  Story (58)  |  Structure (191)  |  Student (131)  |  Word (221)

There’s something about a pious man such as he. He will cheerfully cut your throat if it suits him, but he will hesitate to endanger the welfare of your immaterial and problematical soul.
…...
Science quotes on:  |  Cheerfully (2)  |  Endanger (2)  |  Hesitate (5)  |  Immaterial (3)  |  Pious (3)  |  Soul (139)  |  Suit (7)  |  Throat (10)  |  Welfare (16)

To be creative, scientists need libraries and laboratories and the company of other scientists; certainly a quiet and untroubled life is a help. A scientist's work is in no way deepened or made more cogent by privation, anxiety, distress, or emotional harassment. To be sure, the private lives of scientists may be strangely and even comically mixed up, but not in ways that have any special bearing on the nature and quality of their work. If a scientist were to cut off an ear, no one would interpret such an action as evidence of an unhappy torment of creativity; nor will a scientist be excused any bizarrerie, however extravagant, on the grounds that he is a scientist, however brilliant.
In Advice to a Young Scientist (1979), 40.
Science quotes on:  |  Action (151)  |  Anxiety (15)  |  Brilliance (8)  |  Cogent (2)  |  Company (28)  |  Creativity (66)  |  Distress (5)  |  Ear (21)  |  Emotion (62)  |  Evidence (157)  |  Extravagance (3)  |  Ground (63)  |  Interpretation (61)  |  Laboratory (120)  |  Library (37)  |  Mixed (4)  |  Nature (1029)  |  Need (211)  |  Private Life (3)  |  Privation (4)  |  Quality (65)  |  Quiet (12)  |  Scientist (447)  |  Strangely (2)  |  Torment (13)  |  Unhappiness (6)  |  Untroubled (2)  |  Work (457)

Isaac Asimov quote: When I read about the way in which library funds are being cut and cut
Background: Trinity College Library, Dublin by Irish Welcome Tours CC BY 2.0 (source)
When I read about the way in which library funds are being cut and cut, I can only think that the door is closing and that American society has found one more way to destroy itself.
In I. Asimov: a Memoir (1994), 28.
Science quotes on:  |  America (74)  |  Destroy (63)  |  Fund (12)  |  Library (37)  |  Money (125)  |  Read (83)  |  Society (188)

Wherever the steam mill resounds with the hum of Industry, whether grinding flour on … the Schuylkill, or cutting logs in Oregon, there you find a monument to the memory of Oliver Evans.
Anonymous
As quoted by Coleman Sellers, Jr., in his Lecture (20 Nov 1885) delivered at the Franklin Institute. Printed in Coleman Sellers, Jr., 'Oliver Evans and his Inventions', Journal of the Franklin Institute (Jul 1886), 122, No. 1, 16.
Science quotes on:  |  Oliver Evans (12)  |  Flour (3)  |  Grind (8)  |  Hum (4)  |  Industry (91)  |  Log (4)  |  Memory (81)  |  Mill (5)  |  Monument (19)  |  Steam Power (6)

[Richard Nixon] is the kind of politician who would cut down a redwood tree, and then mount the stump and make a speech for conservation.
Campaign speech (1956). Quoted in Jean H. Baker, The Stevensons: A Biography of an American Family (1997), 328. Jean H. Baker - 1997
Science quotes on:  |  Conservation (139)  |  Hypocrite (4)  |  Richard M. Nixon (10)  |  Politician (22)  |  Redwood (8)  |  Speech (40)  |  Stump (2)  |  Tree (143)


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 EinsteinIsaac NewtonLord KelvinCharles DarwinSrinivasa RamanujanCarl SaganFlorence NightingaleThomas EdisonAristotleMarie CurieBenjamin FranklinWinston ChurchillGalileo GalileiSigmund FreudRobert BunsenLouis PasteurTheodore RooseveltAbraham LincolnRonald ReaganLeonardo DaVinciMichio KakuKarl PopperJohann GoetheRobert OppenheimerCharles Kettering  ... (more people)

Quotations about:Atomic  BombBiologyChemistryDeforestationEngineeringAnatomyAstronomyBacteriaBiochemistryBotanyConservationDinosaurEnvironmentFractalGeneticsGeologyHistory of ScienceInventionJupiterKnowledgeLoveMathematicsMeasurementMedicineNatural ResourceOrganic ChemistryPhysicsPhysicianQuantum TheoryResearchScience and ArtTeacherTechnologyUniverseVolcanoVirusWind PowerWomen ScientistsX-RaysYouthZoology  ... (more topics)
Sitewide search within all Today In Science History pages:
Visit our Science and Scientist Quotations index for more Science Quotes from archaeologists, biologists, chemists, geologists, inventors and inventions, mathematicians, physicists, pioneers in medicine, science events and technology.

Names index: | A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z |

Categories index: | 1 | 2 | A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z |

- 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



who invites your feedback
Thank you for sharing.
Today in Science History
Sign up for Newsletter
with quiz, quotes and more.