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Who said: “I seem to have been only like a boy playing on the seashore, ... finding a smoother pebble or a prettier shell ... whilst the great ocean of truth lay all undiscovered before me.”
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Home > Category Index for Science Quotations > Category Index O > Category: Originality

Originality Quotes (14 quotes)

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)  |  Cut (36)  |  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)  |  Other (25)  |  Outset (4)  |  Preceded (2)  |  Progress (317)  |  Step (67)  |  Success (202)  |  Use (70)  |  Virgin (4)  |  Want (120)  |  Work (457)

As a different, but perhaps more common, strategy for the suppression of novelty, we may admit the threatening object to our midst, but provide an enveloping mantle of ordinary garb… . This kind of cover-up, so often amusing in our daily lives, can be quite dangerous in science, for nothing can stifle originality more effectively than an ordinary mantle placed fully and securely over an extraordinary thing.
In 'A Short Way to Big Ends', Natural History (Jan 1986), 95, No. 1, 18.
Science quotes on:  |  Dangerous (45)  |  Envelop (3)  |  Mantle (3)  |  Novelty (19)  |  Ordinary (44)  |  Research (517)  |  Stifle (4)  |  Strategy (8)  |  Suppression (6)

Harvard never produced anyone of great originality.
Quoted in Ralph Oesper, The Human Side of Scientists (1975), 107.
Science quotes on:  |  Harvard (6)

It is remarkable that when great discoveries are effected, their simplicity always seems to detract from their originality: on these occasions we are reminded of the egg of Columbus!
Curiosities of Literature (1824), Vol. 3, 277-278.
Science quotes on:  |  Detract (2)  |  Discovery (591)  |  Simplicity (126)

It may be conceit, but I believe the subject will interest the public, and I am sure that the views are original.
Letter to his publisher, John Murray (5 Apr 1959). In Charles Darwin and Francis Darwin (ed.), The Life and Letters of Charles Darwin (1887), Vol. 2, 155.
Science quotes on:  |  Belief (400)  |  Book (181)  |  Conceit (9)  |  Interest (170)  |  Public (82)  |  Subject (129)  |  Sureness (2)  |  View (115)

Originality finds the unexpected but inevitable next step.
City Aphorisms, Twelfth Selection (1993).
Science quotes on:  |  Find (248)  |  Inevitable (17)  |  Next (23)  |  Step (67)  |  Unexpected (26)

Originality is independence, not rebellion; it is sincerity, not antagonism.
In The Principles of Success in Literature (1901), 115.
Science quotes on:  |  Antagonism (5)  |  Independence (32)  |  Sincerity (4)

Our novice runs the risk of failure without additional traits: a strong inclination toward originality, a taste for research, and a desire to experience the incomparable gratification associated with the act of discovery itself.
From Reglas y Consejos sobre Investigacνon Cientifica: Los tσnicos de la voluntad. (1897), as translated by Neely and Larry W. Swanson, in Advice for a Young Investigator (1999), 48.
Science quotes on:  |  Act (80)  |  Addition (22)  |  Association (15)  |  Desire (101)  |  Discovery (591)  |  Experience (268)  |  Failure (118)  |  Gratification (14)  |  Inclination (20)  |  Incomparable (7)  |  Novice (2)  |  Research (517)  |  Risk (29)  |  Strength (63)  |  Taste (35)  |  Trait (19)  |  Without (13)

The greater intellect one has, the more originality one finds in men. Ordinary persons find no difference between men.
In Pascal’s Pensιes (1958), 4.
Science quotes on:  |  Difference (208)  |  Find (248)  |  Intellect (157)  |  Man (345)  |  Ordinary (44)  |  Person (114)

The invention of IQ did a great disservice to creativity in education. ... Individuality, personality, originality, are too precious to be meddled with by amateur psychiatrists whose patterns for a “wholesome personality” are inevitably their own.
In speech, 'Education for Creativity in the Sciences', Conference at New York University, Washington Square. As quoted by Gene Currivan in 'I.Q. Tests Called Harmful to Pupil', New York Times (16 Jun 1963), 66.
Science quotes on:  |  Amateur (18)  |  Creativity (66)  |  Disservice (4)  |  Education (280)  |  Individuality (12)  |  Inevitability (8)  |  Invention (283)  |  IQ (5)  |  Meddling (2)  |  Pattern (56)  |  Personality (40)  |  Precious (22)  |  Psychiatrist (13)  |  Wholesome (6)

The originality of mathematics consists in the fact that in mathematical science connections between things are exhibited which, apart from the agency of human reason, are extremely unobvious.
In Science and the Modern World (1938), 32.
Science quotes on:  |  Connection (86)  |  Fact (609)  |  Human (445)  |  Mathematics (587)  |  Reason (330)  |  Science (1699)

The so-called ‘crank’ may be quite original in his ideas. … Invention, however, in the engineering sense involves originality; but not that alone, if the results are to be of value. There is imagination more or less fertile, but with it a knowledge of what has been done before, carried perhaps by the memory, together with a sense of the present or prospective needs in art or industry. Necessity is not always the mother of invention. It may be prevision.
Address as M.I.T. acting president, to the graduating class (11 Jun 1920). Published in Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Technology Review (Jul 1920), 22, 419-420.
Science quotes on:  |  Art (205)  |  Carried (2)  |  Crank (7)  |  Engineering (115)  |  Fertile (10)  |  Idea (440)  |  Imagination (209)  |  Industry (91)  |  Invention (283)  |  Involve (27)  |  Knowledge (1128)  |  Memory (81)  |  Mother Of Invention (6)  |  Necessity (125)  |  Need (211)  |  Original (36)  |  Present (103)  |  Prospective (4)  |  Result (250)  |  Sense (240)  |  Value (180)

Wit must grow like Fingers. If it be taken from others, ’tis like Plums stuck upon black Thorns; there they are for a while, but they come to nothing.
In John Selden, Richard Milward (ed.), 'Wit', Table-Talk of John Selden (1689), 60.
Science quotes on:  |  Black (27)  |  Finger (38)  |  Grow (66)  |  Nothing (267)  |  Other (25)  |  Plagiarism (6)  |  Plum (3)  |  Stuck (5)  |  Take (8)  |  Thorn (5)  |  Wit (27)

[The] erroneous assumption is to the effect that the aim of public education is to fill the young of the species with knowledge and awaken their intelligence, and so make them fit to discharge the duties of citizenship in an enlightened and independent manner. Nothing could be further from the truth. The aim of public education is not to spread enlightenment at all; it is simply to reduce as many individuals as possible to the same safe level, to breed and train a standardised citizenry, to put down dissent and originality.
The American Mercury (24 Apr 1924).
Science quotes on:  |  Aim (58)  |  Assumption (49)  |  Citizenship (5)  |  Dissent (7)  |  Education (280)  |  Effect (133)  |  Enlightenment (11)  |  Error (230)  |  Independence (32)  |  Individual (177)  |  Intelligence (138)  |  Knowledge (1128)  |  Public (82)  |  Reduction (35)  |  Safety (39)  |  Standardization (2)  |  Truth (750)  |  Young (72)


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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- 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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