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Today in Science History - Quickie Quiz
Who said: “Nature does nothing in vain when less will serve; for Nature is pleased with simplicity and affects not the pomp of superfluous causes.”
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Home > Category Index for Science Quotations > Category Index M > Category: Monster

Monster Quotes (13 quotes)

...the genes almost always accurately reproduce. If they don't, you get one of the following results: One, monsters—that is, grossly malformed babies resulting from genetic mistakes. Years ago most monsters died, but now many can be saved. This has made possible the National Football League.
Found widely quoted on the web, but without a print source. Please contact webmaster if you know the primary source.
Science quotes on:  |  Gene (59)  |  Humour (99)  |  Reproduction (48)

And do you know what 'the world' is to me? Shall I,show it to you in my mirror? This world: a monster of energy, without beginning, without end; a firm, iron magnitude of force that does not grow bigger or smaller, that does not expend itself but only transforms itself; as a whole, of unalterable size, a household without expenses or losses, but likewise without increase or income; enclosed by 'nothingness' as by a boundary; not by something blurry or wasted, not something endlessly extended, but set in a definite space as a definite force, and not a space that might be 'empty' here or there, but rather as force throughout, as a play of forces and waves of forces, at the same time one and many, increasing here and at the same time decreasing there; a sea of forces flowing and rushing together, eternally changing, eternally flooding back, with tremendous years of recurrence, with an ebb and a flood of its forms; out of the simplest forms striving toward the most complex, out of the stillest, most rigid, coldest forms toward the hottest, most turbulent, most self-contradictory, and then again returning home to the simple out of this abundance, out of the play of contradictions back to the joy of concord, still affirming itself in this uniformity of its courses and its years, blessing itself as that which must return eternally, as a becoming that knows no satiety, no disgust, no weariness: this, my Dionysian world of the eternally self-creating, the eternally self-destroying, this mystery world of the twofold voluptuous delight, my 'beyond good and evil,' without goal, unless the joy of the circle itself is a goal; without will, unless a ring feels good will toward itself-do you want a name for this world? A solution for all its riddles? A light for you, too, you best-concealed, strongest, most intrepid, most midnightly men?—This world is the will to power—and nothing besides! And you yourselves are also this will to power—and nothing besides!
The Will to Power (Notes written 1883-1888), book 4, no. 1067. Trans. W. Kaufmann and R. J. Hollingdale and ed. W. Kaufmann (1968), 549-50.
Science quotes on:  |  Beginning (101)  |  End (85)  |  Energy (138)  |  Force (117)  |  Goal (50)  |  Mirror (14)  |  Riddle (12)  |  Transformation (37)  |  World (404)

Fractal is a word invented by Mandelbrot to bring together under one heading a large class of objects that have [played] ... an historical role ... in the development of pure mathematics. A great revolution of ideas separates the classical mathematics of the 19th century from the modern mathematics of the 20th. Classical mathematics had its roots in the regular geometric structures of Euclid and the continuously evolving dynamics of Newton.? Modern mathematics began with Cantor's set theory and Peano's space-filling curve. Historically, the revolution was forced by the discovery of mathematical structures that did not fit the patterns of Euclid and Newton. These new structures were regarded ... as 'pathological,' ... as a 'gallery of monsters,' akin to the cubist paintings and atonal music that were upsetting established standards of taste in the arts at about the same time. The mathematicians who created the monsters regarded them as important in showing that the world of pure mathematics contains a richness of possibilities going far beyond the simple structures that they saw in Nature. Twentieth-century mathematics flowered in the belief that it had transcended completely the limitations imposed by its natural origins.
Now, as Mandelbrot points out, ... Nature has played a joke on the mathematicians. The 19th-century mathematicians may not have been lacking in imagination, but Nature was not. The same pathological structures that the mathematicians invented to break loose from 19th-century naturalism turn out to be inherent in familiar objects all around us.
From 'Characterizing Irregularity', Science (12 May 1978), 200, No. 4342, 677-678. Quoted in Benoit Mandelbrot, The Fractal Geometry of Nature (1977, 1983), 3-4.
Science quotes on:  |  Euclid (27)  |  Fractal (9)  |  Idea (336)  |  Imagination (179)  |  Benoit Mandelbrot (13)  |  Mathematician (140)  |  Nature (721)  |  Sir Isaac Newton (219)  |  Nomenclature (124)  |  Painting (21)  |  Pathological (4)  |  Revolution (46)  |  Structure (145)

I beheld the wretch—the miserable monster whom I had created.
Frankenstein (1818), Ch. 5, ed. M. K. Joseph (1971), 58.
Science quotes on:  |  Behold (6)  |  Creation (177)  |  Frankenstein (3)  |  Miserable (3)  |  Wretch (4)

I pull a flower from the woods,
A monster with a glass
Computes the stamens in a breath,
And has her in a class.
Science quotes on:  |  Botany (40)  |  Class (41)  |  Classification (71)  |  Count (24)  |  Flower (47)  |  Glass (32)  |  Observation (352)  |  Stamen (2)  |  Woods (5)

Is not Cuvier the great poet of our era? Byron has given admirable expression to certain moral conflicts, but our immortal naturalist has reconstructed past worlds from a few bleached bones; has rebuilt cities, like Cadmus, with monsters’ teeth; has animated forests with all the secrets of zoology gleaned from a piece of coal; has discovered a giant population from the footprints of a mammoth.
From 'La Peau de Chagrin' (1831). As translated by Ellen Marriage in The Wild Ass’s Skin (1906), 21-22.
Science quotes on:  |  Admirable (9)  |  Animated (3)  |  Bleached (3)  |  Bone (46)  |  Lord George Gordon Byron (19)  |  Coal (34)  |  Baron Georges Cuvier (28)  |  Discover (48)  |  Expression (58)  |  Footprint (8)  |  Forest (72)  |  Giant (23)  |  Glean (2)  |  Immortal (10)  |  Mammoth (7)  |  Naturalist (44)  |  Past (70)  |  Poet (47)  |  Population (56)  |  Reconstruct (3)  |  Secret (65)  |  Tooth (17)  |  World (404)  |  Zoology (21)

Science has blown to atoms, as she can rend and rive in the rocks themselves; but in those rocks she has found, and read aloud, the great stone book which is the history of the earth, even when darkness sat upon the face of the deep. Along their craggy sides she has traced the footprints of birds and beasts, whose shapes were never seen by man. From within them she has brought the bones, and pieced together the skeletons, of monsters that would have crushed the noted dragons of the fables at a blow.
Book review of Robert Hunt, Poetry of Science (1848), in the London Examiner (1848). Although uncredited in print, biographers identified his authorship from his original handwritten work. Collected in Charles Dickens and ‎Frederic George Kitton (ed.) Old Lamps for New Ones: And Other Sketches and Essays (1897), 87.
Science quotes on:  |  Atom (204)  |  Beast (24)  |  Bird (79)  |  Blow (9)  |  Bone (46)  |  Book (134)  |  Crag (4)  |  Darkness (17)  |  Deep (32)  |  Dragon (3)  |  Earth (356)  |  Fable (5)  |  Face (39)  |  Footprint (8)  |  Great (127)  |  History (225)  |  Piece (21)  |  Reading (46)  |  Rock (77)  |  Science (1194)  |  Shape (29)  |  Skeleton (10)  |  Stone (41)  |  Tracing (3)

So God created the great sea monsters and every living creature that moves, with which the waters swarm, according to their kinds.
Bible
(circa 725 B.C.)
Science quotes on:  |  Creation (177)  |  Creature (88)  |  Kind (47)  |  Marine Biology (20)  |  Sea (102)  |  Swarm (7)  |  Water (187)

The book of Nature is the book of Fate. She turns the gigantic pages, — leaf after leaf, — never re-turning one. One leaf she lays down, a floor of granite; then a thousand ages, and a bed of slate ; a thousand ages, and a measure of coal,; a thousand ages, and a layer of marl and mud : vegetable forms appear; her first misshapen animals, zoophyte, trilobium, fish ; then, saurians, — rude forms, in which she has only blocked her future statue, concealing under these unwieldy monsters the fine type of her coming king. The face of the planet cools and dries, the races meliorate, and man is born. But when a race has lived its term, it comes no more again.
From 'Fate', collected in The Complete Works of Ralph Waldo Emerson, Volume 6: The Conduct of Life (1860), 15.
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The rigid electron is in my view a monster in relation to Maxwell's equations, whose innermost harmony is the principle of relativity... the rigid electron is no working hypothesis, but a working hindrance. Approaching Maxwell's equations with the concept of the rigid electron seems to me the same thing as going to a concert with your ears stopped up with cotton wool. We must admire the courage and the power of the school of the rigid electron which leaps across the widest mathematical hurdles with fabulous hypotheses, with the hope to land safely over there on experimental-physical ground.
In Arthur I. Miller, Albert Einstein's Special Theory of Relativity (1981), 350.
Science quotes on:  |  Concert (2)  |  Courage (24)  |  Electron (52)  |  Equation (59)  |  Experiment (473)  |  Harmony (38)  |  Hindrance (2)  |  Hypothesis (194)  |  James Clerk Maxwell (68)  |  Relativity (39)  |  Rigid (5)  |  Safe (9)

They look a little like the monster in ‘Alien.’ They’re horrifying to look at up close. That’s sort of what makes them fun. [About his microscopic study of ants.]
As quoted by Lindsay Whitehurst in 'University of Utah Scientist Discovers Terrifying Ant Species', The Salt Lake Tribune (31 Jul 2013)
Science quotes on:  |  Alien (19)  |  Ant (14)  |  Close (16)  |  Fun (24)  |  Horror (6)  |  Make (21)  |  Microscope (56)  |  Sort (13)

This world was once a fluid haze of light,
Till toward the centre set the starry tides,
And eddied into suns, that wheeling cast
The planets: then the monster, then the man.
&039;The Princess&039; (1847), part 2, collected in Alfred Tennyson and William James Rolfe (ed.) The Poetic and Dramatic Works of Alfred, Lord Tennyson (1898), 124.
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Visualize yourself confronted with the task of killing, one after the other, a cabbage, a fly, a fish, a lizard, a guinea pig, a cat, a dog, a monkey and a baby chimpanzee. In the unlikely case that you should experience no greater inhibitions in killing the chimpanzee than in destroying the cabbage or the fly, my advice to you is to commit suicide at your earliest possible convenience, because you are a weird monstrosity and a public danger.
'The Enmity Between Generations and Its Probable Ethological Causes'. In Richard I. Evans, Konrad Lorenz: The Man and his Ideas (1975), 227.
Science quotes on:  |  Cabbage (3)  |  Cat (20)  |  Chimpanzee (6)  |  Danger (48)  |  Dog (32)  |  Fish (63)  |  Fly (47)  |  Inhibition (10)  |  Kill (22)  |  Lizard (4)  |  Monkey (28)  |  Suicide (14)


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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