Celebrating 17 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 R > Category: Read

Read Quotes (52 quotes)

Il n'y a qu'un demi-siècle, un orateur chrétien, se défiant des hommes de la science leur disait: 'Arrêtez-vous enfin, et ne creusez pas jusqu'aux enfers.' Aujourd'hui, Messieurs, rassurés sur l'inébranlable constance de notre foi, nous vous disons: creusez, creusez encore; plus vous descendrez, plus vous rapprocherez du grand mystère de l'impuissance de l'homme et de la vérité de la religion. Creusez donc, creusez toujours,mundum tradidit disputationibus eorum; et quand la science aura donné son dernier coup de marteau sur les fondements de la terre, vous pourrez à la lueur du feu qu'il fera jaillir, lire encore l'idée de Dieu et contempler l'empreinte de sa main.
Only a half-century ago, a Christian speaker, mistrustful of men of science told them: 'Stop finally, and do not dig to hell.' Today, gentlemen, reassured about the steadfastness of our unshakeable faith, we say: dig, dig again; the further down you, the closer you come to the great mystery of the impotence of man and truth of religion. So dig, always dig: and when science has stuck its final hammer blow on the bosom of the earth, you will be able to ignite a burst of light, read furthermore the mind of God and contemplate the imprint of His hand.
As Monseigneur Rendu, Bishop of Annecy, Savoy, presiding at the closing session of a meeting of the Geological Society of France at Chambéry, Savoy (27 Aug 1844). In Bulletin de la Société Géologique de France 1843 à 1844, Tome 1, Ser. 2, 857. (1844), li. Google trans., edited by Webmaster.
Science quotes on:  |  Bosom (6)  |  Burst (14)  |  Contemplation (32)  |  Dig (6)  |  Earth (395)  |  Faith (101)  |  God (315)  |  Hammer (11)  |  Hell (17)  |  Impotence (3)  |  Imprint (2)  |  Light (203)  |  Men Of Science (95)  |  Mind (424)  |  Mistrust (3)  |  Mystery (100)  |  Religion (154)  |  Science And Religion (241)  |  Steadfastness (2)  |  Stop (41)  |  Truth (645)

A persistent and age-old instinct makes us want to wander
Into regions yet untrod
And read what is still unread
In the manuscripts of God.
Address upon receiving the Perkin Medal Award, 'The Big Things in Chemistry', The Journal of Industrial and Engineering Chemistry (Feb 1921), 13, No. 2, 163. These lines concluded his remarks, without citation, and since Webmaster has found no other source has assumed the words are his own. Contact Webmaster if you know a different primary source.
Science quotes on:  |  Ancient (56)  |  God (315)  |  Instinct (45)  |  Make (23)  |  Manuscript (6)  |  Persistent (3)  |  Region (18)  |  Research (441)  |  Wander (12)  |  Want (77)

After the German occupation of Holland in May 1940, the [last] two dark years of the war I spent hiding indoors from the Nazis, eating tulip bulbs to fill the stomach and reading Kramers' book “Quantum Theorie des Elektrons und der Strahlung” by the light of a storm lamp.
Science quotes on:  |  Book (147)  |  Eat (27)  |  German (5)  |  Hiding (6)  |  Holland (2)  |  Light (203)  |  Nazi (4)  |  Occupation (32)  |  Quantum Theory (47)  |  Stomach (16)  |  World War II (7)

Amoeba has her picture in the book,
Proud Protozoon!—Yet beware of pride,
All she can do is fatten and divide;
She cannot even read, or sew, or cook…
The Worm can crawl
But has no eyes to look.
The Jelly-fish can swim
But lacks a bride.
Essay read at the Heretics Club, Cambridge (May 1922), 'Philosophic Ants', collected in Essays of a Biologist (1923), 176.
Science quotes on:  |  Amoeba (17)  |  Beware (6)  |  Book (147)  |  Cook (12)  |  Crawl (4)  |  Divide (15)  |  Eye (127)  |  Look (45)  |  Picture (39)  |  Pride (34)  |  Worm (17)

As an undergraduate who believed himself destined to be a mathematician I happened upon “Man and Superman” and as I read it at a library table I felt like Saul of Tarsus when the light broke. “If literature,” I said to myself, “can be like this then literature is the stuff for me.” And to this day I never see a differential equation written out without breathing a prayer of thanks.
In 'An Open Letter to George Bernard Shaw', Saturday Review (21 Jul 1956), 39, 12. ollected in If You Don't Mind My Saying So: Essays on Man and Nature (1964), 391.
Science quotes on:  |  Belief (279)  |  Breathe (19)  |  Destined (3)  |  Differential Equation (7)  |  Happen (31)  |  Library (35)  |  Literature (52)  |  Mathematician (151)  |  Prayer (11)  |  See (96)  |  Superman (3)  |  Thanks (8)  |  Undergraduate (7)

Be careful about reading health books. You may die of a misprint.
In Mark Twain and Alex Ayres (ed.), The Wit & Wisdom of Mark Twain (1987), 97.
Science quotes on:  |  Book (147)  |  Death (239)  |  Health (121)

By asking questions and quickly reading some books, [Melvin Calvin] felt comfortable in many fields of endeavor.
Co-author with Andrew A. Benson, 'Melvin Calvin', Biographical Memoirs of the US National Academy of Science.
Science quotes on:  |  Ask (59)  |  Biography (222)  |  Book (147)  |  Melvin Calvin (6)  |  Comfortable (5)  |  Endeavor (16)  |  Field (102)  |  Question (245)

Early in my school days a boy had a copy of the “Wonders of the World,” which I often read, and disputed with other boys about the veracity of some of the statements; and I believe that this book first gave me a wish to travel in remote countries, which was ultimately fulfilled by the voyage of the Beagle.
In Charles Darwin and Francis Darwin (ed.), 'Autobiography', The Life and Letters of Charles Darwin (1887, 1896), Vol. 1, 31.
Science quotes on:  |  Beagle (11)  |  Belief (279)  |  Book (147)  |  Country (84)  |  Dispute (12)  |  First (109)  |  Remote (20)  |  School (67)  |  Statement (39)  |  Travel (29)  |  Veracity (2)  |  Voyage (4)  |  Wish (40)  |  Wonder (106)  |  World (479)

Earthquakes traveling through the interior of the globe are like so many messengers sent out to explore a new land. The messages are constantly coming and seismologists are fast learning to read them.
In Our Mobile Earth (1926), 5.
Science quotes on:  |  Constantly (9)  |  Earthquake (26)  |  Exploration (86)  |  Globe (33)  |  Interior (13)  |  Land (58)  |  Learning (173)  |  Message (19)  |  Messenger (2)  |  New (241)  |  Seismologist (2)  |  Travel (29)

Have you ever plunged into the immensity of space and time by reading the geological treatises of Cuvier? Borne away on the wings of his genius, have you hovered over the illimitable abyss of the past as if a magician’s hand were holding you aloft?
From 'La Peau de Chagrin' (1831). As translated by Herbert J. Hunt in The Wild Ass’s Skin (1977), 40-41.
Science quotes on:  |  Abyss (17)  |  Aloft (4)  |  Baron Georges Cuvier (28)  |  Genius (153)  |  Geological (3)  |  Hover (3)  |  Immensity (12)  |  Limitless (4)  |  Magician (10)  |  Past (81)  |  Plunge (3)  |  Space (118)  |  Time (311)  |  Treatise (14)  |  Wing (28)

Have you ever plunged into the immensity of time and space by reading the geological tracts of Cuvier? Transported by his genius, have you hovered over the limitless abyss of the past, as if held aloft by a magician’s hand?
From 'La Peau de Chagrin' (1831). As translated as by Helen Constantine The Wild Ass’s Skin (2012), 19.
Science quotes on:  |  Abyss (17)  |  Aloft (4)  |  Baron Georges Cuvier (28)  |  Genius (153)  |  Geological (3)  |  Hand (66)  |  Hold (35)  |  Hover (3)  |  Immensity (12)  |  Limitless (4)  |  Magician (10)  |  Past (81)  |  Plunge (3)  |  Space (118)  |  Time (311)  |  Tract (3)  |  Transport (8)

I am not a speed reader. I am a speed understander.
In Cris Tovani, Do I Really Have to Teach Reading? (2004), 51
Science quotes on:  |  Speed (21)  |  Understanding (309)

I can no more explain why I like “natural history” than why I like California canned peaches; nor why I do not care for that enormous brand of natural history which deals with invertebrates any more than why I do not care for brandied peaches. All I can say is that almost as soon as I began to read at all I began to like to read about the natural history of beasts and birds and the more formidable or interesting reptiles and fishes.
In 'My Life as a Naturalist', American Museum Journal (May 1918), 18, 321. As cited in Maurice Garland Fulton (ed.) Roosevelt's Writings: Selections from the Writings of Theodore Roosevelt (1920), 247.
Science quotes on:  |  Animal (253)  |  Beast (26)  |  Bird (85)  |  Explain (35)  |  Fish (69)  |  Formidable (6)  |  Invertebrate (3)  |  Natural History (35)  |  Peach (2)  |  Reptile (19)

I have read somewhere or other, — in Dionysius of Halicarnassus, I think, — that history is philosophy teaching by examples.
In On the Study and Use of History, Letter 2. As cited in John Bartlett, Familiar Quotations (1875, 10th ed., 1919), 304. Dionysius was quoting Thucydides.
Science quotes on:  |  Dionysius of Halicarnassus (2)  |  Example (40)  |  History (243)  |  Philosophy (180)  |  Teaching (99)  |  Thucydides (2)

I read them. Not to grade them. No, I read them to see how I am doing. Where am I failing? What don’t they understand? Why do they give wrong answers? Why do they have some point of view that I don’t think is right? Where am I failing? Where do I need to build up.
In The Essential Deming.
Science quotes on:  |  Answer (147)  |  Build (48)  |  Fail (22)  |  Grade (5)  |  Monitor (3)  |  Need (119)  |  Point Of View (19)  |  Right (94)  |  Teaching (99)  |  Think (69)  |  Understand (71)  |  Wrong (84)

I've been very involved in science literacy because it's critically important in our world today. … As a public, we're asked to vote on issues, we’re asked to accept explanations, we're asked to figure out what to do with our own health care, and you can't do that unless you have some level of science literacy. Science literacy isn’t about figuring out how to solve equations like E=MC². Rather, it's about being able to read an article in the newspaper about the environment, about health care and figuring out how to vote on it. It's about being able to prepare nutritious meals. It's about being able to think your way through the day.
As quoted in 'Then & Now: Dr. Mae Jemison' (19 Jun 2005) on CNN web site.
Science quotes on:  |  Article (13)  |  Citizenship (4)  |  Environment (116)  |  Equation (64)  |  Health Care (5)  |  Literacy (6)  |  Meal (12)  |  Newspaper (25)  |  Nutrition (13)  |  Science Literacy (4)  |  Thinking (220)  |  Vote (10)

If my legs give up, they give up. But in that case I could sit and do programmes about amoebas—Micro Monsters, perhaps. What else do you want to do? Sit by the fire and read yesterday’s newspaper?
Stating his intent to never retire. Reported by Adam Lusher in 'Sir David Attenborough', Daily Mail (28 Feb 2014).
Science quotes on:  |  Amoeba (17)  |  Monster (15)  |  Newspaper (25)  |  Program (13)

In Heaven there'll be no algebra,
No learning dates or names,
But only playing golden harps
And reading Henry James.
Anonymous
Displayed at James’s home, Lambs House in Rye. Said to have been written by Henry James’s nephew in the guest book there, as stated in J.D. McClatchy, Sweet Theft: A Poet's Commonplace Book (2016), 212. https://books.google.com/books?isbn=1619027607 J.D. McClatchy - 2016
Science quotes on:  |  Algebra (32)  |  Date (8)  |  Golden (7)  |  Harp (3)  |  Heaven (102)  |  Henry James (4)  |  Learn (80)  |  Name (93)  |  Play (36)

In the beginning was the book of Nature. For eon after eon, the pages of the book turned with no human to read them. No eye wondered at the ignition of the sun, the coagulation of the earth, the birth of the moon, the solidification of a terrestrial continent, or the filling of the seas. Yet when the first primitive algae evolved to float on the waters of this ocean, a promise was born—a hope that someday all the richness and variety of the phenomena of the universe would be read with appreciative eyes.
Opening paragraph in Gary G. Tibbetts, How the Great Scientists Reasoned: The Scientific Method in Action (2012), 1.
Science quotes on:  |  Algae (4)  |  Appreciative (2)  |  Beginning (108)  |  Birth (70)  |  Book (147)  |  Book Of Nature (6)  |  Born (14)  |  Coagulation (3)  |  Continent (34)  |  Eon (5)  |  Evolution (434)  |  Eye (127)  |  Filling (6)  |  Float (9)  |  Hope (90)  |  Human (297)  |  Ignition (2)  |  Moon (116)  |  Nature (832)  |  Ocean (99)  |  Page (14)  |  Phenomenon (176)  |  Primitive (23)  |  Promise (17)  |  Richness (8)  |  Sea (113)  |  Someday (3)  |  Sun (173)  |  Terrestrial (13)  |  Turn (39)  |  Universe (433)  |  Variety (44)  |  Water (210)  |  Wonder (106)

It is of great advantage to the student of any subject to read the original memoirs on that subject, for science is always most completely assimilated when it is in the nascent state.
A Treatise on Electricity and Magnetism (1873), Vol. 1, Preface, xiii-xiv.
Science quotes on:  |  Advantage (31)  |  Assimilate (5)  |  Memoir (5)  |  Science (1321)  |  Student (109)

It's better to read first rate science fiction than second rate science—it's a lot more fun, and no more likely to be wrong.
Lecture at Wired 2013 (18 Oct 2013).
Science quotes on:  |  Better (84)  |  Fun (24)  |  Likely (6)  |  Science Fiction (15)  |  Wrong (84)

Lay aside all conceit Learn to read the book of Nature for yourself. Those who have succeeded best have followed for years some slim thread which once in a while has broadened out and disclosed some treasure worth a life-long search.
Lecture at a teaching laboratory on Penikese Island, Buzzard's Bay. Quoted from the lecture notes by David Starr Jordan, Science Sketches (1911), 145.
Science quotes on:  |  Best (93)  |  Book (147)  |  Book Of Nature (6)  |  Broad (9)  |  Conceit (7)  |  Disclosure (3)  |  Follow (38)  |  Learn (80)  |  Lifelong (6)  |  Nature (832)  |  Search (66)  |  Success (170)  |  Thread (10)  |  Treasure (27)  |  Worth (52)

Let me tell you how at one time the famous mathematician Euclid became a physician. It was during a vacation, which I spent in Prague as I most always did, when I was attacked by an illness never before experienced, which manifested itself in chilliness and painful weariness of the whole body. In order to ease my condition I took up Euclid's Elements and read for the first time his doctrine of ratio, which I found treated there in a manner entirely new to me. The ingenuity displayed in Euclid's presentation filled me with such vivid pleasure, that forthwith I felt as well as ever.
Selbstbiographie (1875), 20. In Robert Édouard Moritz, Memorabilia Mathematica; Or, The Philomath's Quotation-book (1914), 146.
Science quotes on:  |  Anecdote (17)  |  Biography (222)  |  Chill (7)  |  Doctrine (46)  |  Euclid (27)  |  Illness (16)  |  Ingenuity (24)  |  Pain (71)  |  Physician (210)  |  Pleasure (87)  |  Presentation (11)  |  Ratio (14)  |  Recovery (15)  |  Vacation (2)  |  Vivid (13)  |  Weariness (4)

Little Birds are writing
Interesting books.
To be read by cooks:
Read, I say, not roasted—
Letterpress, when toasted,
Loses its good looks.
In Sylvie and Bruno Concluded (1893), 371.
Science quotes on:  |  Bird (85)  |  Book (147)  |  Cook (12)  |  Interesting (34)  |  Toast (6)  |  Write (41)

Nature is a vast tablet, inscribed with signs, each of which has its own significancy, and becomes poetry in the mind when read; and geology is simply the key by which myriads of these signs, hitherto indecipherable, can be unlocked and perused, and thus a new province added to the poetical domain.
Lecture Third, collected in Popular Geology: A Series of Lectures Read Before the Philosophical Institution of Edinburgh, with Descriptive Sketches from a Geologist's Portfolio (1859), 131.
Science quotes on:  |  Geology (180)  |  Inscription (7)  |  Key (31)  |  Mind (424)  |  Myriad (15)  |  Nature (832)  |  Poetry (86)  |  Science And Poetry (7)  |  Sign (31)  |  Significance (45)  |  Tablet (2)  |  Unlock (3)

No other explanation of living forms is allowed than heredity, and any which is founded on another basis must be rejected. The present fashion requires that even the smallest and most indifferent inquiry must be dressed in phylogenetic costume, and whilst in former centuries authors professed to read in every natural detail some intention of the creator mundi, modern scientists have the aspiration to pick out from every occasional observation a fragment of the ancestral history of the living world.
'On the Principles of Animal Morphology', Proceedings of the Royal Society of Edinburgh (2 Apr 1888), 15, 294. Original as Letter to Mr John Murray, communicated to the Society by Professor Sir William Turner. Page given as in collected volume published 1889.
Science quotes on:  |  Aspiration (15)  |  Basis (42)  |  Detail (53)  |  Explanation (147)  |  Fashion (18)  |  Form (136)  |  Founded (5)  |  Fragment (21)  |  Heredity (49)  |  History (243)  |  Indifferent (6)  |  Inquiry (25)  |  Intention (23)  |  Life (710)  |  Modern (84)  |  Natural (94)  |  Observation (381)  |  Occasional (9)  |  Pick (10)  |  Reject (14)  |  Scientist (358)

No other part of science has contributed as much to the liberation of the human spirit as the Second Law of Thermodynamics. Yet, at the same time, few other parts of science are held to be so recondite. Mention of the Second Law raises visions of lumbering steam engines, intricate mathematics, and infinitely incomprehensible entropy. Not many would pass C.P. Snow’s test of general literacy, in which not knowing the Second Law is equivalent to not having read a work of Shakespeare.
In The Second Law (1984), Preface, vii.
Science quotes on:  |  Contribution (40)  |  Entropy (38)  |  Human Spirit (8)  |  Incomprehensible (6)  |  Intricate (11)  |  Liberation (4)  |  Literacy (6)  |  Mathematics (525)  |  Obscure (16)  |  Science (1321)  |  Second Law Of Thermodynamics (13)  |  William Shakespeare (74)  |  Steam Engine (39)  |  Test (78)

None of the myriad scientific papers I’d read prepared me for the patience and diligence that go into scientific research. None had prepared me for the acute attention to minutiae that keeps science accurate, and scientific integrity intact. Or for the tedium. … I accepted the idea that finding out you don’t like something can be invaluable.
Recalling undergraduate junior year tropical biology program exploring Costa Rica’s forest jungles. In 'Concentration Crisis', Brown Alumni Magazine (Jul-Aug 2007)
Science quotes on:  |  Accept (15)  |  Accuracy (49)  |  Attention (67)  |  Diligence (12)  |  Idea (373)  |  Integrity (8)  |  Invaluable (3)  |  Minutiae (3)  |  Myriad (15)  |  Paper (44)  |  Patience (29)  |  Prepare (14)  |  Research (441)  |  Scientific (117)  |  Tedium (3)

Nothing holds me ... I will indulge in my sacred fury; I will triumph over mankind by the honest confession that I have stolen the golden vases of the Egyptians to build up a tabernacle for my God, far away from the confines of Egypt. If you forgive me, I rejoice ; if you are angry, I can bear it. The die is cast; the book is written, to be read either now or by posterity, I care not which. It may well wait a century for a reader, as God has waited six thousand years for an observer.
As given in David Brewster, The Martyrs of Science (1841), 217.
Science quotes on:  |  Book (147)  |  Century (73)  |  God (315)  |  Wait (28)

One of the biggest roles of science fiction is to prepare people to accept the future without pain and to encourage a flexibility of the mind. Politicians should read science fiction, not westerns and detective stories.
(1984) Quoted in Jerome Agel (ed.), The Making of Kubrick's 2001 (4th Ed. 1970), 300. In James E. Combs, Polpop: Politics and Popular Culture in America (1984), 147.
Science quotes on:  |  Accept (15)  |  Flexibility (4)  |  Future (175)  |  Mind (424)  |  Pain (71)  |  Politician (18)  |  Science Fiction (15)  |  Story (39)

Prize fighters can sometimes read and write when they start - but they can't when they finish.
Science quotes on:  |  Fighter (2)  |  Injury (13)  |  Write (41)

Read no newspapers, try to find a few friends who think as you do, read the wonderful writers of earlier times, Kant, Goethe, Lessing, and the classics of other lands, and enjoy the natural beauties of Munich’s surroundings. Make believe all the time that you are living, so to speak, on Mars among alien creatures and blot out any deeper interest in the actions of those creatures. Make friends with a few animals. Then you will become a cheerful man once more and nothing will be able to trouble you.
Letter (5 Apr 1933). As quoted in Jamie Sayen, Einstein in America: The Scientist’s Conscience in the Age of Hitler and Hiroshima (1985), 12. This is part of Einstein’s reply to a letter from a troubled, unemployed musician, presumably living in Munich.
Science quotes on:  |  Animal (253)  |  Beauty (141)  |  Cheerful (3)  |  Classic (4)  |  Creature (98)  |  Friend (48)  |  Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (122)  |  Immanuel Kant (37)  |  Natural (94)  |  Newspaper (25)  |  Think (69)  |  Trouble (41)

Richard Feynman was fond of giving the following advice on how to be a genius. You have to keep a dozen of your favorite problems constantly present in your mind, although by and large they will lay in a dormant state. Every time you hear or read a new trick or a new result, test it against each of your twelve problems to see whether it helps. Every once in a while there will be a hit, and people will say, “How did he do it? He must be a genius!”
In 'Ten Lessons I Wish I Had Been Taught', Indiscrete Thoughts (2008), 202.
Science quotes on:  |  Advice (30)  |  Constantly (9)  |  Dormant (3)  |  Dozen (3)  |  Favorite (14)  |  Richard P. Feynman (93)  |  Fond (5)  |  Genius (153)  |  Hear (17)  |  Help (44)  |  Hit (7)  |  Keep (22)  |  Mind (424)  |  New (241)  |  People (111)  |  Present (73)  |  Problem (278)  |  Result (197)  |  State (60)  |  Test (78)  |  Trick (13)  |  Twelve (4)

Science has zipped the atom open in a dozen places, it can read the scrawlings on the Rosetta stone as glibly as a literary critic explains Hart Crane, but it doesn’t know anything about playwrights.
In article 'Roaming in the Gloaming' collected in Collecting Himself: James Thurber on Writing and Writers, Humour and Himself (1989). As cited in Eugene Ehrlich and Marshall De Bruhl (eds.)International Thesaurus of Quotations (1996), 601.
Science quotes on:  |  Atom (220)  |  Playwright (2)  |  Rosetta Stone (2)  |  Science (1321)  |  Scrawl (2)

The discovery of the famous original [Rosetta Stone] enabled Napoleon’s experts to begin the reading of Egypt’s ancient literature. In like manner the seismologists, using the difficult but manageable Greek of modern physics, are beginning the task of making earthquakes tell the nature of the earth’s interior and translating into significant speech the hieroglyphics written by the seismograph.
Science quotes on:  |  Ancient (56)  |  Difficult (32)  |  Discovery (530)  |  Earth (395)  |  Earthquake (26)  |  Egypt (17)  |  Expert (36)  |  Geology (180)  |  Hieroglyphic (2)  |  Interior (13)  |  Literature (52)  |  Nature (832)  |  Physics (242)  |  Rosetta Stone (2)  |  Seismograph (4)  |  Seismologist (2)  |  Significant (14)  |  Speech (36)  |  Task (52)  |  Translate (4)  |  Write (41)

The earth is a book in which we read not only its history, but the history of the living things it has borne.
Epigraph in Isaac Asimov’s Book of Science and Nature Quotations (1988), 108.
Science quotes on:  |  Book (147)  |  Earth (395)  |  Geology (180)  |  History (243)  |  Life (710)

The idiot, the Indian, the child and unschooled farmer’s boy stand nearer to the light by which nature is to be read, than the dissector or the antiquary.
Concluding sentence in 'History', collected in The Complete Works of Ralph Waldo Emerson (1903), 41.
Science quotes on:  |  Antiquary (2)  |  Boy (29)  |  Child (154)  |  Dissection (24)  |  Farmer (20)  |  Idiot (12)  |  Indian (12)  |  Light (203)  |  Nature (832)  |  Nearer (8)  |  Stand (42)

The meaning of human life and the destiny of man cannot be separable from the meaning and destiny of life in general. 'What is man?' is a special case of 'What is life?' Probably the human species is not intelligent enough to answer either question fully, but even such glimmerings as are within our powers must be precious to us. The extent to which we can hope to understand ourselves and to plan our future depends in some measure on our ability to read the riddles of the past. The present, for all its awesome importance to us who chance to dwell in it, is only a random point in the long flow of time. Terrestrial life is one and continuous in space and time. Any true comprehension of it requires the attempt to view it whole and not in the artificial limits of any one place or epoch. The processes of life can be adequately displayed only in the course of life throughout the long ages of its existence.
The Meaning of Evolution: A Study of the History of Life and of its Significance for Man (1949), 9.
Science quotes on:  |  Ability (61)  |  Answer (147)  |  Artificiality (2)  |  Awesome (7)  |  Comprehension (44)  |  Dependence (29)  |  Destiny (20)  |  Display (17)  |  Epoch (9)  |  Existence (207)  |  Future (175)  |  Human (297)  |  Importance (165)  |  Intelligence (114)  |  Life (710)  |  Limit (54)  |  Mankind (161)  |  Meaning (84)  |  Past (81)  |  Place (61)  |  Plan (57)  |  Power (208)  |  Precious (17)  |  Present (73)  |  Process (162)  |  Question (245)  |  Requirement (41)  |  Riddle (16)  |  Separation (29)  |  Species (140)  |  Understanding (309)  |  View (78)  |  Whole (73)

The narrow sectarian cannot read astronomy with impunity. The creeds of his church shrivel like dried leaves at the door of the observatory.
In 'Progress of Culture', an address read to the Phi Beta Kappa Society at Cambridge, 18 July 1867. Collected in Works of Ralph Waldo Emerson (1883), 474.
Science quotes on:  |  Astronomy (152)  |  Church (20)  |  Creed (9)  |  Door (23)  |  Dried (2)  |  Impunity (2)  |  Leaf (38)  |  Narrow (25)  |  Observatory (11)  |  Science And Religion (241)

The new mathematics is a sort of supplement to language, affording a means of thought about form and quantity and a means of expression, more exact, compact, and ready than ordinary language. The great body of physical science, a great deal of the essential facts of financial science, and endless social and political problems are only accessible and only thinkable to those who have had a sound training in mathematical analysis, and the time may not be very remote when it will be understood that for complete initiation as an efficient citizen of the great complex world-wide States that are now developing, it is as necessary to be able to compute, to think in averages and maxima and minima, as it is now to be able to read and write.
Mankind in the Making (1903), 204.
Science quotes on:  |  Accessible (3)  |  Analysis (114)  |  Average (26)  |  Citizen (17)  |  Compact (2)  |  Essential (67)  |  Expression (65)  |  Fact (507)  |  Form (136)  |  Language (126)  |  Mathematics (525)  |  Maximum (8)  |  Minimum (8)  |  Necessity (112)  |  Physical Science (50)  |  Politics (72)  |  Quality (50)  |  Society (141)  |  Supplement (2)  |  Thought (280)  |  Training (34)  |  World (479)  |  Write (41)

The only objections that have occurred to me are, 1st that you have loaded yourself with an unnecessary difficulty in adopting Natura non facit saltum so unreservedly. . . . And 2nd, it is not clear to me why, if continual physical conditions are of so little moment as you suppose, variation should occur at all. However, I must read the book two or three times more before I presume to begin picking holes.
Comments after reading Darwin's book, Origin of Species.]
Letter to Charles Darwin (23 Nov 1859). In Charles Darwin and Francis Darwin (ed.), Charles Darwin: His Life Told in an Autobiographical Chapter, and in a Selected Series of His Published Letters (1892), 214.
Science quotes on:  |  Adopt (4)  |  Book (147)  |  Condition (102)  |  Criticism (47)  |  Difficult (32)  |  Natura Non Facit Saltum (2)  |  Objection (12)  |  Occur (15)  |  Unnecessary (8)  |  Unreserved (2)  |  Variation (42)

The operations of the universe are unlimited, and in the great book of nature, man has scarcely read more than the title page or the preface.
Address (2 Jun 1874) at the Laying of the Cornerstone of the American Museum of Natural History, in Fifth and Sixth Annual Reports of the American Museum of Natural History (1 Dec 1874), 49.
Science quotes on:  |  Book (147)  |  Great (158)  |  Nature (832)  |  Operation (83)  |  Page (14)  |  Preface (6)  |  Scarcely (5)  |  Title (9)  |  Universe (433)  |  Unlimited (7)

We were very privileged to leave on the Moon a plaque ... saying, ‘For all Mankind’. Perhaps in the third millennium a wayward stranger will read the plaque at Tranquility Base. We’ll let history mark that this was the age in which that became a fact. I was struck this morning in New York by a proudly waved but uncarefully scribbled sign. It said, ‘Through you we touched the Moon.’ It was our privilege today to touch America. I suspect perhaps the most warm, genuine feeling that all of us could receive came through the cheers and shouts and, most of all, the smiles of our fellow Americans. We hope and think that those people shared our belief that this is the beginning of a new era—the beginning of an era when man understands the universe around him, and the beginning of the era when man understands himself.
Acceptance speech (13 Aug 1969), upon receiving the Medal of Freedom as a member of the first manned moon-landing mission. In James R. Hansen, First Man: The Life of Neil A. Armstrong (2005), 569.
Science quotes on:  |  Age (100)  |  America (63)  |  Beginning (108)  |  Belief (279)  |  Era (12)  |  Fact (507)  |  History (243)  |  Leaving (10)  |  Mankind (161)  |  Mark (22)  |  Moon (116)  |  Scribble (4)  |  Sharing (7)  |  Sign (31)  |  Stranger (9)  |  Touching (4)  |  Understanding (309)  |  Wayward (3)

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 (63)  |  Cut (29)  |  Destroy (43)  |  Fund (6)  |  Library (35)  |  Money (107)  |  Society (141)

When I was a boy, I read with great interest but skepticism about as magic lamp which was used with success by a certain Aladdin. Today I have no skepticism whatsoever about the magic of the xenon flash lamp which we use so effectively for many purposes.
In Electronic Flash, Strobe (1970), v.
Science quotes on:  |  Boy (29)  |  Effective (14)  |  Flash (19)  |  Interest (129)  |  Lamp (11)  |  Magic (52)  |  Purpose (111)  |  Skepticism (15)  |  Today (52)  |  Xenon (4)

When I was a small boy [my father] used to sit me on his lap and read to me from the [Encyclopaedia] Britannica … say, about … the Tyrannosaurus rex, and it would say something like, “This dinosaur is twenty-five feet high and its head is six feet across.” My father would stop reading and say, “Now, let’s see what that means. That would mean that if he stood in our front yard, he would be tall enough to put his head through our window up here.” (We were on the second floor.) “But his head would be too wide to fit in the window.” Everything he read to me he would translate as best he could into some reality. …
In 'The Making of a Scientist', What Do You Care What Other People Think?": Further Adventures of a Curious Character (2001), 12-13. I learned from my father to translate: everything I read I try to figure out what it really means, what it’s really saying.
Science quotes on:  |  Boy (29)  |  Dinosaur (21)  |  Father (34)  |  Fit (20)  |  Head (40)  |  Height (19)  |  Meaning (84)  |  Reality (98)  |  Translate (4)  |  Tyrannosaurus Rex (2)  |  Width (3)  |  Window (18)

When you read a book, you hold another’s mind in your hands.
Appears, without citation, in Helen Grenat, Wisdom Through the Ages (1998), 28.
Science quotes on:  |  Book (147)  |  Hand (66)  |  Hold (35)  |  Mind (424)

Why do I call [Isaac Newton] a magician? Because he looked on the whole universe and all that is in it as a riddle, as a secret which could be read by applying pure thought to certain evidence, certain mystic clues which God had laid about the world to allow a sort of philosopher's treasure hunt.
In 'Newton, the Man' (1946). In Geoffrey Keynes (ed.), Essays in Biography, 2nd edition (1951), 313.
Science quotes on:  |  Clue (12)  |  Evidence (133)  |  God (315)  |  Hidden (34)  |  Magician (10)  |  Mystic (6)  |  Sir Isaac Newton (235)  |  Philosopher (109)  |  Pure (38)  |  Riddle (16)  |  Secret (80)  |  Thought (280)  |  Universe (433)

With old inflation riding the headlines, I have read till I am bleary-eyed, and I can't get head from tails of the whole thing. ... Now we are living in an age of explanations—and plenty of ’em, too—but no two things that’s been done to us have been explained twice the same way, by even the same man. It's and age of in one ear and out the other.
Newspaper column, for example in 'Complete Heads and Tails', St. Petersburgh Times (28 Jan 1934), 4. Collected in Will Rogers' Weekly Articles: The Roosevelt Years (1933-1935) (1982), 91-92.
Science quotes on:  |  Explanation (147)  |  Headline (3)  |  Inflation (3)  |  Same (33)  |  Twice (4)

[Among the books he chooses, a statesman] ought to read interesting books on history and government, and books of science and philosophy; and really good books on these subjects are as enthralling as any fiction ever written in prose or verse.
In Theodore Roosevelt: An Autobiography (1913), 333.
Science quotes on:  |  Book (147)  |  Fiction (15)  |  Government (71)  |  History (243)  |  Interesting (34)  |  Philosophy (180)  |  Prose (6)  |  Science (1321)  |  Statesman (9)  |  Verse (7)

[As a young teenager] Galois read [Legendre's] geometry from cover to cover as easily as other boys read a pirate yarn.
Men of Mathematics (1937, 1986), 364.
Science quotes on:  |  Book (147)  |  Évariste Galois (3)  |  Geometry (90)  |  Adrien-Marie Legendre (2)  |  Pirate (2)

[Louis Rendu, Bishop of Annecy] collects observations, makes experiments, and tries to obtain numerical results; always taking care, however, so to state his premises and qualify his conclusions that nobody shall be led to ascribe to his numbers a greater accuracy than they merit. It is impossible to read his work, and not feel that he was a man of essentially truthful mind and that science missed an ornament when he was appropriated by the Church.
In The Glaciers of the Alps (1860), 299.
Science quotes on:  |  Accuracy (49)  |  Appropriation (2)  |  Ascribe (9)  |  Care (56)  |  Church (20)  |  Collection (35)  |  Conclusion (103)  |  Essential (67)  |  Experiment (490)  |  Impossibility (47)  |  Measurement (141)  |  Merit (20)  |  Mind (424)  |  Miss (9)  |  Number (138)  |  Observation (381)  |  Ornament (11)  |  Premise (12)  |  Qualification (6)  |  Louis le Chanoine Rendu (2)  |  Result (197)  |  Science (1321)  |  Science And Religion (241)  |  Statement (39)  |  Truth (645)  |  Work (330)


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:
Custom Quotations Search - custom search within only our quotations 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 |

who invites your feedback

- 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

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