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Home > Dictionary of Science Quotations > Scientist Names Index V > Jules Verne Quotes

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Jules Verne
(8 Feb 1828 - 24 Mar 1905)

French author who was a pioneer in science fiction with such novels as Journey to the Centre of the Earth (1864), Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea and From Earth to the Moon.

Science Quotes by Jules Verne (9 quotes)

La science, mon garηon, est faite d’erreurs, mais d’erreurs qu’il est bon de commettre, car elles mθnent peu ΰ peu ΰ la vιritι.
Science, my boy, is composed of errors, but errors that it is right to make, for they lead step by step to the truth.
— Jules Verne
Journey to the Centre of the Earth, translated by William Butcher (1992, 2008), 146.
Science quotes on:  |  Error (204)  |  Research (477)  |  Step By Step (7)  |  Truth (665)

Le grand architecte de l'univers l'a construite on bons matιriaux.
The Great Architect of the universe built it of good firm stuff.
— Jules Verne
Journey to the Centre of the Earth, translated by William Butcher (1992)
Science quotes on:  |  Universe (450)

On peut braver les lois humaines, mais non rιsister aux lois naturelles.
One can defy human laws, but cannot resist natural laws.
— Jules Verne
Original French in Les Voyages Extraordinaires par Jules Verne: Vingt Mille Lieues Sous Les Mers (1870), 359. (Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea). Translation by Webmaster. The context is that Captain Nemo is describing how the submarine Nautilus had been trapped as a melting iceberg flipping to find a new equilibrium. Nemo regarded the accident as caused by “a caprice of nature, not from the ignorance of man.”
Science quotes on:  |  Defy (5)  |  Human (316)  |  Law (370)  |  Natural Law (22)  |  Resist (7)

I consider [H. G. Wells], as a purely imaginative writer, to be deserving of very high praise, but our methods are entirely different. I have always made a point in my romances of basing my so-called inventions upon a groundwork of actual fact, and of using in their construction methods and materials which are not entirely without the pale of contemporary engineering skill and knowledge. ... The creations of Mr. Wells, on the other hand, belong unreservedly to an age and degree of scientific knowledge far removed from the present, though I will not say entirely beyond the limits of the possible.
— Jules Verne
Gordon Jones, 'Jules Verne at Home', Temple Bar (Jun 1904), 129, 670.
Science quotes on:  |  Science Fiction (15)  |  Herbert George (H.G.) Wells (20)

I did not expect to find the electric cable in its primitive state, such as it was on leaving the manufactory. The long serpent, covered with the remains of shells, bristling with foraminiferae, was encrusted with a strong coating which served as a protection against all boring mollusks. It lay quietly sheltered from the motions of the sea, and under a favorable pressure for the transmission of the electric spark which passes from Europe to America in .32 of a second. Doubtless this cable will last for a great length of time, for they find that the gutta-percha covering is improved by the sea water.
[Referring to the Transatlantic telegraph cable laid in 1866, as viewed from the fictional submarine Nautilus.]
— Jules Verne
Twenty Thousand Leagues Under The Seas, (1874), 285. Translated from the original French edition, Vingt Mille Lieues Sous Les Mers (1870).
Science quotes on:  |  America (64)  |  Boring (2)  |  Cable (3)  |  Electricity (113)  |  Europe (30)  |  Gutta-Percha (2)  |  Marine Biology (20)  |  Mollusk (3)  |  Nautilus (2)  |  Protection (19)  |  Spark (16)  |  Telegraph (28)  |  Transatlantic (3)  |  Transmission (22)

I do not see the possibility of comparison between his [H. G. Wells] work and mine. We do not proceed in the same manner. It occurs to me that his stories do not repose on a very scientific basis. ... I make use of physics. He invents. I go to the moon in a cannon-ball, discharged from a cannon. Here there is no invention. He goes to Mars in an airship, which he constructs of a metal which does not obey the law of gravitation. Ça c'est très joli ... but show me this metal. Let him produce it.
— Jules Verne
Quoted in R. H. Sherard, 'Jules Verne Re-Visited', T.P.'s Weekly (9 Oct 1903).
Science quotes on:  |  Science Fiction (15)  |  Herbert George (H.G.) Wells (20)

I have always fancied that the end of the world will be when some enormous boiler, heated to three thousand millions of atmospheric pressure, shall explode and blow up the globe. ... They [the Americans] are great boilermakers.
— Jules Verne
Five Weeks in a Balloon (1863, 1962), 100.
Science quotes on:  |  Atomic Bomb (98)  |  End Of The World (3)

I wanted to see what no one had yet observed, even if I had to pay for this curiosity with my life.
— Jules Verne
Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea translated by Walter James Miller and Frederick Paul Walter (1870). In Gary Westfahl, Science Fiction Quotations: From the Inner Mind to the Outer Limits (2006), 116.
Science quotes on:  |  Exploration (89)

The sole precoccupation of this learned society was the destruction of humanity for philanthropic reasons and the perfection of weapons as instruments of civilization.
— Jules Verne
From the Earth to the Moon, translated by Walter James Miller (1978)
Science quotes on:  |  Civilization (139)  |  Weapon (50)



Quotes by others about Jules Verne (2)

I'm sure we would not have had men on the Moon if it had not been for Wells and Verne and the people who write about this and made people think about it. I'm rather proud of the fact that I know several astronauts who became astronauts through reading my books.
Address to US Congress, 1975. Science and Technology Committee, United States Congress, House, Future Space Programs, 1975, Hearings Before the Subcommittee on Space Science and Applications (1975), 206. Also in Arthur C. ClarkeThe View from Serendip (1977), 238.
Science quotes on:  |  Astronaut (22)  |  Exploration (89)  |  Moon (118)  |  Herbert George (H.G.) Wells (20)

I do not remember how it got into my head to make first calculations related to rocket. It seems to me the first seeds were planted by famous fantaseour, J. Verne.
As quoted in LIFE: 100 People Who Changed the World (2010), 94.
Science quotes on:  |  Calculation (62)  |  Inspiration (43)  |  Rocket (27)  |  Seed (41)


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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