
David Eugene Smith
(21 Jan 1860  29 Jul 1944)
American mathematician and historian of mathematics who is considered one of the founders of the field of mathematics education. Although his Ph.D. had with a concentration in aesthetics and the history of fine arts, and he began to practice law in his father’s office, he turned by chance, in 1884, to teaching mathematics, which became his career for 42 years thereafter.

Science Quotes by David Eugene Smith (5 quotes)
It is a serious question whether America, following England’s lead, has not gone into problemsolving too extensively. Certain it is that we are producing no textbooks in which the theory is presented in the delightful style which characterizes many of the French works … , or those of the recent Italian school, or, indeed, those of the continental writers in general.
— David Eugene Smith
In The Teaching of Elementary Mathematics (1902), 219.
Mathematics is the science of consistency; it is a picture of the universe; as Plato is said to have expressed the idea, “God eternally geometrizes.”
— David Eugene Smith
In 'The Poetry of Mathematics', The Mathematics Teacher (May 1926), 19, No. 5, 295.
Mathematics, indeed, is the very example of brevity, whether it be in the shorthand rule of the circle, c = πd, or in that fruitful formula of analysis, e^{iπ} = 1, —a formula which fuses together four of the most important concepts of the science,—the logarithmic base, the
transcendental ratio π, and the imaginary and negative units.
— David Eugene Smith
In 'The Poetry of Mathematics', The Mathematics Teacher (May 1926), 19, No. 5, 293.
One merit of mathematics few will deny: it says more in fewer words than any other science.
— David Eugene Smith
In 'The Poetry of Mathematics', The Mathematics Teacher (May 1926), 19, No. 5, 293. This is a paraphrase from Voltaire: “One merit of poetry few will deny; it says more and in fewer words than prose.”
Perhaps the strongest bond of sympathy between mathematics and poetry, however, is the endless invention of each. Dr. Johnson remarked, “The essence of poetry is invention; such invention as, by producing something unexpected, surprises and delights”; but he might have said the same of mathematics.
— David Eugene Smith
In 'The Poetry of Mathematics', The Mathematics Teacher (May 1926), 19, No. 5, 295.
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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