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Home > Dictionary of Science Quotations > Scientist Names Index S > Friedrich Schiller Quotes

Friedrich Schiller
(10 Nov 1759 - 9 May 1804)

German poet, philosopher and playwright.

Science Quotes by Friedrich Schiller (9 quotes)

Far must thy researches go
Wouldst thou learn the world to know;
Thou must tempt the dark abyss
Wouldst thou prove what Being is;
Naught but firmness gains the prize,—
Naught but fullness makes us wise,—
Buried deep truth ever lies!
— Friedrich Schiller
In Edgar A. Bowring (trans.), The Poems of Schiller (1875), 260.
Science quotes on:  |  Abyss (29)  |  Being (1278)  |  Bury (16)  |  Dark (140)  |  Deep (233)  |  Fullness (2)  |  Gain (145)  |  Know (1518)  |  Learn (629)  |  Lie (364)  |  Must (1526)  |  Naught (10)  |  Prize (13)  |  Prove (250)  |  Research (664)  |  Truth (1057)  |  Wise (131)  |  World (1774)

It is difficult to discriminate the voice of truth from amid the clamour raised by heated partisans.
— Friedrich Schiller
From Schillers Sammtliche Werke (1834), 934. Given with translation, in James Wood, Dictionary of Quotations from Ancient and Modern, English and Foreign Sources (1893), 382. The original German is: Schwer ist es, aus dem Geschrei erhitzter Parteien die Stimme der Wahrheit zu unterscheiden.
Science quotes on:  |  Difficult (246)  |  Difficulty (196)  |  Discriminate (4)  |  Heat (174)  |  Partisan (5)  |  Truth (1057)  |  Voice (52)

Man is an imitative creature, and whoever is the foremost leads the herd.
— Friedrich Schiller
As quoted, without citation, in John Walker, A Fork in the Road: Answers to Daily Dilemmas from the Teachings of Jesus Christ (2005), 137.
Science quotes on:  |  Creature (233)  |  Foremost (11)  |  Herd (15)  |  Lead (384)  |  Man (2251)  |  Whoever (42)

The universe is one at God's thoughts.
— Friedrich Schiller
Philosophische Briefe, ‘Letter 4: Theosophy of Julius’. In Essays: Aesthetical and Philosophical (1884). As cited in Robert Andrews, The Columbia Dictionary of Quotations (1993), 946.
Science quotes on:  |  God (757)  |  Thought (953)  |  Universe (857)

To Archimedes once came a youth intent upon knowledge.
Said he “Initiate me into the Science divine,
Which to our country has borne glorious fruits in abundance,
And which the walls of the town ’gainst the Sambuca protects.”
“Callst thou the science divine? It is so,” the wise man responded;
“But so it was, my son, ere the state by her service was blest.
Would’st thou have fruit of her only? Mortals with that can provide thee,
He who the goddess would woo, seek not the woman in her.”
— Friedrich Schiller
Poem, 'Archimedes und der Schuler', collected in Gedichte von Friedrich Schiller (1807), Vol. 1, 149. English version 'Archimedes and the Student', in Edgar A. Bowring (trans.), The Poems of Schiller (1875), 262-263. From the original German: Zu Archimedes kam einst ein wissbegieriger Jüngling. / “Weihe mich,” sprach er zu ihm, “ein in die gottliche Kunst, / Die so herrliche Frucht dem Vaterlande getragen, / Und die Mauern der Stadt vor der Sambuca beschützt!” / “Gottlieb nennst du die Kunst? Sie ists,” versetzte der Weise; / “Aber das war sie, mein Sohn, eh sie dem Staat noch gedient. / Willst du nur Früchte von ihr, die kann auch die Sterbliche zeugen; / Wer um die Göttin freit, suche in ihr nicht das Weib.” [Note: “Sambuca” is the name of a machine used in sieges, employed by Marcellus against Syracuse.]
Science quotes on:  |  Abundance (25)  |  Archimedes (55)  |  Blessed (20)  |  Country (251)  |  Divine (112)  |  Fruit (102)  |  Glorious (48)  |  Goddess (7)  |  Initiate (13)  |  Knowledge (1529)  |  Man (2251)  |  Mathematicians and Anecdotes (141)  |  Mortal (54)  |  Protect (58)  |  Science (3879)  |  Seek (213)  |  Service (110)  |  State (491)  |  Town (27)  |  Wall (67)  |  Wise (131)  |  Wise Man (15)  |  Woman (151)  |  Youth (101)

To one, science is an exalted goddess; to another it is a cow which provides him with butter.
— Friedrich Schiller
From Xenien (1796). As quoted in Carl Sagan, Broca's Brain (1979), 38. From the original German, “Einem ist sie [Wissenschaft; die hohe, die himmlische Göttin; dem anderen, Eine tüchige Kuh, die ihn mit Butter versorgt,” as given in Alan Lindsay Mackay, A Dictionary of Scientific Quotations (1991), 218.
Science quotes on:  |  Butter (8)  |  Cow (39)  |  Exalt (27)  |  Exalted (22)  |  Goddess (7)  |  Science (3879)

Toil of science swells the wealth of art.
— Friedrich Schiller
In collection compiled by Charles Noel Douglas, Forty Thousand Quotations, Prose and Poetical (1917),
Science quotes on:  |  Art (657)  |  Science (3879)  |  Swelling (5)  |  Toil (25)  |  Wealth (94)

What marvel is this? We begged you for drinkable springs,
O earth, and what is your lap sending forth?
Is there life in the deeps as well? A race yet unknown
Hiding under the lava? Are they who had fled returning?
Come and see, Greeks; Romans, come! Ancient Pompeii Is found again, the city of Hercules rises!
— Friedrich Schiller
Translation as given, without citation, as epigraph in C.W. Ceram, Gods, Graves, and Scholars: The Story of Archaeology (1986), 1. There are other translations of the Schiller’s original German, for example, in 'Pompeii and Herculaneum', Life of Schiller: Poetical Works (1902), 249.
Science quotes on:  |  Ancient (189)  |  Archaeology (49)  |  City (78)  |  Deep (233)  |  Drink (53)  |  Earth (996)  |  Greek (107)  |  Herculaneum (4)  |  Hercules (9)  |  Hiding (12)  |  Lap (9)  |  Lava (9)  |  Life (1795)  |  Marvel (35)  |  Pompeii (4)  |  Race (268)  |  Return (124)  |  Rise (166)  |  Roman (36)  |  See (1081)  |  Spring (133)  |  Unknown (182)  |  Water (481)

What strange wonder is this? Our prayer to thee was for water,
Earth! What is this that thou now send’st from thy womb in reply?
In the abyss is there life ? Or hidden under the lava
Dwelleth some race now unknown? Does what hath fled e’er return?
Greeks and Romans, oh come! Oh, see the ancient Pompeii
Here is discover’d again,—Hercules’ town is rebuilt!
— Friedrich Schiller
Beginning lines of poem, 'Pompeii and Herculaneum', in Edgar A. Bowring (trans.), The Poems of Schiller (1875), 237.
Science quotes on:  |  Abyss (29)  |  Ancient (189)  |  Archaeology (49)  |  Discover (553)  |  Dwell (15)  |  Earth (996)  |  Flee (8)  |  Greek (107)  |  Herculaneum (4)  |  Hercules (9)  |  Hide (69)  |  Lava (9)  |  Life (1795)  |  Pompeii (4)  |  Prayer (28)  |  Race (268)  |  Rebuild (4)  |  Reply (56)  |  Return (124)  |  Roman (36)  |  See (1081)  |  Strange (157)  |  Town (27)  |  Unknown (182)  |  Water (481)  |  Womb (24)  |  Wonder (236)



Quotes by others about Friedrich Schiller (1)

The young genius early exults in the contemplation of power and beauty. During Scott’s childhood, a frightful thunder-storm raged at Edinburgh, which made his brothers and the domestics huddle together in one room, shivering with fear at every peal. Young Walter was found lying on his back in the garden, the rain pitilessly pelting his face, while he, almost convulsed with delight, shouted, at every flash, “bonnie! bonnie!” Schiller was found by his father, on a similar occasion, perched upon a tree, and, on being harshly questioned as to his object, whimpered out that he wanted to see where the thunder came from.
In 'Genius', Wellman’s Miscellany (Dec 1871), 4, No. 6, 204. A variation of the anecdote about Walter Scott is given in George Gilfillan (ed.), 'Memoir of Sir Walter Scott', The Poetical Works of Sir Walter Scott: With memoir and critical dissertation (1857), viii. The anecdote about Schiller is of dubious authenticity, according to Charles Follen (ed.), The Life of Friedrich Schiller: Comprehending an Examination of His Works (1837), 7
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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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