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Who said: “Every body perseveres in its state of being at rest or of moving uniformly straight forward, except insofar as it is compelled to change its state by forces impressed.”
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Home > Category Index for Science Quotations > Category Index E > Category: Exquisite

Exquisite Quotes (12 quotes)

Contingency is rich and fascinating; it embodies an exquisite tension between the power of individuals to modify history and the intelligible limits set by laws of nature. The details of individual and species’s lives are not mere frills, without power to shape the large-scale course of events, but particulars that can alter entire futures, profoundly and forever.
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Science quotes on:  |  Alter (19)  |  Contingency (11)  |  Course (57)  |  Detail (65)  |  Embody (13)  |  Entire (29)  |  Event (97)  |  Fascinating (17)  |  Forever (42)  |  Future (229)  |  History (302)  |  Individual (177)  |  Intelligible (10)  |  Law (418)  |  Limit (86)  |  Live (186)  |  Mere (41)  |  Modify (11)  |  Nature (1029)  |  Power (273)  |  Profoundly (11)  |  Rich (48)  |  Set (56)  |  Shape (52)  |  Tension (7)

Darwin grasped the philosophical bleakness with his characteristic courage. He argued that hope and morality cannot, and should not, be passively read in the construction of nature. Aesthetic and moral truths, as human concepts, must be shaped in human terms, not ‘discovered’ in nature. We must formulate these answers for ourselves and then approach nature as a partner who can answer other kinds of questions for us–questions about the factual state of the universe, not about the meaning of human life. If we grant nature the independence of her own domain–her answers unframed in human terms–then we can grasp her exquisite beauty in a free and humble way. For then we become liberated to approach nature without the burden of an inappropriate and impossible quest for moral messages to assuage our hopes and fears. We can pay our proper respect to nature’s independence and read her own ways as beauty or inspiration in our different terms.
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Science quotes on:  |  Aesthetic (26)  |  Answer (201)  |  Approach (33)  |  Argue (17)  |  Beauty (171)  |  Become (100)  |  Burden (23)  |  Characteristic (66)  |  Concept (102)  |  Construction (69)  |  Courage (39)  |  Darwin (12)  |  Different (110)  |  Discover (115)  |  Domain (21)  |  Factual (8)  |  Fear (113)  |  Formulate (10)  |  Free (59)  |  Grant (21)  |  Grasp (43)  |  Hope (129)  |  Human (445)  |  Human Life (25)  |  Humble (23)  |  Impossible (68)  |  Inappropriate (3)  |  Independence (32)  |  Inspiration (50)  |  Kind (99)  |  Liberate (8)  |  Mean (63)  |  Message (30)  |  Moral (100)  |  Morality (33)  |  Nature (1029)  |  Ourselves (34)  |  Partner (4)  |  Passively (3)  |  Pay (30)  |  Philosophical (14)  |  Proper (27)  |  Quest (24)  |  Question (315)  |  Read (83)  |  Respect (57)  |  Shape (52)  |  State (96)  |  Term (87)  |  Truth (750)  |  Universe (563)

Have you ever observed a humming-bird moving about in an aerial dance among the flowers—a living prismatic gem that changes its colour with every change of position— … its exquisite form, its changeful splendour, its swift motions and intervals of aërial suspension, it is a creature of such fairy-like loveliness as to mock all description.
In Green Mansions: A Romance of the Tropical Forest (1916),
Science quotes on:  |  Aerial (3)  |  Change (291)  |  Color (78)  |  Creature (127)  |  Dance (14)  |  Description (72)  |  Fairy (8)  |  Flower (65)  |  Form (210)  |  Gem (9)  |  Hummingbird (3)  |  Interval (8)  |  Living (44)  |  Loveliness (4)  |  Mock (5)  |  Motion (127)  |  Observe (48)  |  Position (54)  |  Prismatic (2)  |  Splendor (8)  |  Suspension (5)  |  Swift (10)

He who studies it [Nature] has continually the exquisite pleasure of discerning or half discerning and divining laws; regularities glimmer through an appearance of confusion, analogies between phenomena of a different order suggest themselves and set the imagination in motion; the mind is haunted with the sense of a vast unity not yet discoverable or nameable. There is food for contemplation which never runs short; you are gazing at an object which is always growing clearer, and yet always, in the very act of growing clearer, presenting new mysteries.
From 'Natural History', Macmillan's Magazine (1875), 31, 366.
Science quotes on:  |  Act (80)  |  Analogy (46)  |  Appearance (77)  |  Clearer (4)  |  Confusion (34)  |  Contemplation (37)  |  Continuing (4)  |  Different (110)  |  Discerning (7)  |  Discover (115)  |  Food (139)  |  Gaze (12)  |  Glimmer (4)  |  Growing (15)  |  Half (35)  |  Haunting (2)  |  Imagination (209)  |  Law (418)  |  Mind (544)  |  Motion (127)  |  Mystery (125)  |  Nature (1029)  |  New (340)  |  Object (110)  |  Order (167)  |  Phenomenon (218)  |  Pleasure (98)  |  Presenting (2)  |  Regularity (24)  |  Sense (240)  |  Study (331)  |  Suggestion (24)  |  Unity (43)  |  Vast (56)

I have occasionally had the exquisite thrill of putting my finger on a little capsule of truth, and heard it give the faint squeak of mortality under my pressure.
Letter to Stanley Hart White (Jan 1929), collected in The Letters of E.B. White (1976, 1989), 85.
Science quotes on:  |  Capsule (6)  |  Faint (5)  |  Finger (38)  |  Hear (33)  |  Mortality (13)  |  Occasional (10)  |  Pressure (31)  |  Thrill (14)  |  Truth (750)

It seems to me what is called for is an exquisite balance between two conflicting needs: the most skeptical scrutiny of all hypotheses that are served up to us and at the same time a great openness to new ideas … If you are only skeptical, then no new ideas make it through to you … On the other hand, if you are open to the point of gullibility and have not an ounce of skeptical sense in you, then you cannot distinguish the useful ideas from the worthless ones.
In 'The Burden of Skepticism', Skeptical Inquirer (Fall 1987), 12, No. 1.
Science quotes on:  |  Balance (43)  |  Conflicting (3)  |  Distinguish (32)  |  Gullibility (2)  |  Hypothesis (227)  |  Idea (440)  |  Need (211)  |  New (340)  |  On The Other Hand (16)  |  Openness (5)  |  Scrutiny (13)  |  Sense (240)  |  Skeptical (6)  |  Useful (66)  |  Worthless (15)

Knowledge and wonder are the dyad of our worthy lives as intellectual beings. Voyager did wonders for our knowledge, but performed just as mightily in the service of wonder–and the two elements are complementary, not independent or opposed. The thought fills me with awe–a mechanical contraption that could fit in the back of a pickup truck, traveling through space for twelve years, dodging around four giant bodies and their associated moons, and finally sending exquisite photos across more than four light-hours of space from the farthest planet in our solar system.
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Science quotes on:  |  Across (9)  |  Associate (9)  |  Awe (24)  |  Back (55)  |  Body (193)  |  Complementary (8)  |  Contraption (2)  |  Dodge (3)  |  Element (129)  |  Far (77)  |  Fill (35)  |  Finally (10)  |  Fit (31)  |  Giant (28)  |  Independent (41)  |  Intellectual (79)  |  Knowledge (1128)  |  Live (186)  |  Mechanical (31)  |  Mightily (2)  |  Moon (132)  |  Oppose (16)  |  Perform (27)  |  Planet (199)  |  Send (13)  |  Service (54)  |  Solar System (48)  |  Space (154)  |  Thought (374)  |  Travel (40)  |  Truck (3)  |  Voyager (2)  |  Wonder (134)  |  Worthy (21)  |  Year (214)

Like the furtive collectors of stolen art, we [cell biologists] are forced to be lonely admirers of spectacular architecture, exquisite symmetry, dramas of violence and death, mobility, self-sacrifice and, yes, rococo sex.
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Science quotes on:  |  Admirer (4)  |  Architecture (35)  |  Art (205)  |  Biologist (31)  |  Cell (125)  |  Collector (9)  |  Death (270)  |  Drama (10)  |  Force (194)  |  Furtive (2)  |  Lonely (7)  |  Mobility (5)  |  Self-Sacrifice (5)  |  Sex (48)  |  Spectacular (8)  |  Steal (5)  |  Symmetry (26)  |  Violence (20)

Nature! … The spectacle of Nature is always new, for she is always renewing the spectators. Life is her most exquisite invention; and death is her expert contrivance to get plenty of life.
As quoted by T.H. Huxley, in Norman Lockyer (ed.), 'Nature: Aphorisms by Goethe', Nature (1870), 1, 9.
Science quotes on:  |  Contrivance (9)  |  Death (270)  |  Expert (42)  |  Invention (283)  |  Life (917)  |  Nature (1029)  |  New (340)  |  Plenty (5)  |  Renew (7)  |  Spectacle (11)  |  Spectator (6)

There is beauty in discovery. There is mathematics in music, a kinship of science and poetry in the description of nature, and exquisite form in a molecule. Attempts to place different disciplines in different camps are revealed as artificial in the face of the unity of knowledge. All illiterate men are sustained by the philosopher, the historian, the political analyst, the economist, the scientist, the poet, the artisan, and the musician.
From address (1958), upon being appointed Chancellor of the University of California.
Science quotes on:  |  Analyst (4)  |  Artificial (26)  |  Artisan (7)  |  Attempt (94)  |  Beauty (171)  |  Description (72)  |  Different (110)  |  Discipline (38)  |  Discovery (591)  |  Economist (13)  |  Form (210)  |  Historian (30)  |  Illiterate (3)  |  Kinship (3)  |  Knowledge (1128)  |  Mathematics (587)  |  Molecule (125)  |  Music (66)  |  Musician (11)  |  Nature (1029)  |  Philosopher (132)  |  Poet (59)  |  Poetry (96)  |  Political (31)  |  Science (1699)  |  Scientist (447)  |  Unity (43)

Where the untrained eye will see nothing but mire and dirt, Science will often reveal exquisite possibilities. The mud we tread under our feet in the street is a grimy mixture of clay and sand, soot and water. Separate the sand, however, as Ruskinn observes—let the atoms arrange themselves in peace according to their nature—and you have the opal. Separate the clay, and it becomes a white earth, fit for the finest porcelain; or if it still further purifies itself, you have a sapphire. Take the soot, and it properly treated it will give you a diamond. While lastly, the water, purified and distilled, will become a dew-drop, or crystallize into a lovely star. Or, again, you may see as you will in any shallow pool either the mud lying at the bottom, or the image of the heavens above.
The Pleasures of Life (1887, 2007), 63.
Science quotes on:  |  Dirt (8)  |  Observation (418)  |  Possibility (96)

[On common water.] Its substance reaches everywhere; it touches the past and prepares the future; it moves under the poles and wanders thinly in the heights of air. It can assume forms of exquisite perfection in a snowflake, or strip the living to a single shining bone cast up by the sea.
From essay 'The Flow of the River', collected in The Immense Journey: An Imaginative Naturalist Explores the Mysteries of Man and Nature (1957, 1959), 16.
Science quotes on:  |  Air (151)  |  Assume (19)  |  Bone (57)  |  Cast (15)  |  Common (92)  |  Everywhere (14)  |  Form (210)  |  Future (229)  |  Height (24)  |  Living (44)  |  Move (58)  |  Past (109)  |  Perfection (71)  |  Prepare (19)  |  Reach (68)  |  Sea (143)  |  Shining (8)  |  Single (72)  |  Snowflake (9)  |  Strip (5)  |  Substance (73)  |  Touch (48)  |  Under (7)  |  Wander (16)  |  Water (244)


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)
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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
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Bible
Thomas Huxley
Alessandro Volta
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Wilhelm Roentgen
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Bertrand Russell
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- 70 -
Samuel Morse
John Wheeler
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Robert Fulton
Pierre Laplace
Humphry Davy
Thomas Edison
Lord Kelvin
Theodore Roosevelt
Carolus Linnaeus
- 60 -
Francis Galton
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Immanuel Kant
Martin Fischer
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Karl Popper
Paul Dirac
Avicenna
James Watson
William Shakespeare
- 50 -
Stephen Hawking
Niels Bohr
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Rachel Carson
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Henry Adams
Richard Dawkins
Werner Heisenberg
Alfred Wegener
John Dalton
- 40 -
Pierre Fermat
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Giordano Bruno
JJ Thomson
Thomas Kuhn
Leonardo DaVinci
Archimedes
David Hume
- 30 -
Andreas Vesalius
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Richard Feynman
James Hutton
Alexander Fleming
Emile Durkheim
Benjamin Franklin
Robert Oppenheimer
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Charles Kettering
- 20 -
Carl Sagan
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Marie Curie
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Francis Crick
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Francis Bacon
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- 10 -
Aristotle
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Isaac Asimov
Charles Darwin
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