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Home > Dictionary of Science Quotations > Scientist Names Index V > Carl Vogt Quotes

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Carl Vogt
(5 Jul 1817 - 5 May 1895)

German-Swiss zoologist, physician and politician who originally trained in medicine, but his interest turned to the natural sciences. He specialized in marine biology, and also taught geology.

Science Quotes by Carl Vogt (5 quotes)

All the properties that we designate as activity of the soul, are only the functions of the cerebral substance, and to express ourselves in a coarser way, thought is just about to the brain what bile is to the liver and urine to the kidney. It is absurd to admit an independent soul who uses the cerebellum as an instrument with which he would work as he pleases.
— Carl Vogt
As quoted in William Vogt, La Vie d'un Homme, Carl Vogt (1896), 48. Translated by Webmaster, from the original French, “Toutes les propriétés que nous designons sous le nom d’activité de l’âme, ne sont que les fonctions de la substance cérébrale, et pour nous exprimer d’ une façon plus grossière, la pensée est à peu près au cerveau ce que la bile est au foie et l’urine au rein. Il est absurde d’ admettre une âme indépendante qui se serve du cervelet comme d’un instrument avec lequelle travaillerait comme il lui plait.”
Science quotes on:  |  Absurd (30)  |  Activity (135)  |  Admit (45)  |  Bile (4)  |  Brain (213)  |  Cerebellum (3)  |  Cerebral (2)  |  Coarse (3)  |  Express (65)  |  Function (131)  |  Independent (67)  |  Instrument (95)  |  Kidney (14)  |  Liver (15)  |  Name (170)  |  Please (24)  |  Property (126)  |  Soul (166)  |  Substance (87)  |  Thought (546)  |  Urine (11)  |  Work (635)

During this [book preparation] time attacks have not been wanting—we must always be prepared for them. If they grow out of a scientific soil, they cannot but be useful, by laying bare weak points and stimulating to their correction; but if they proceed from that soil, from which the lilies of innocence and the palms of conciliation should spring up, where, however, nothing but the marsh-trefoil of credulity and the poisonous water-hemlock of calumniation grow, they deserve no attention.
— Carl Vogt
From Carl Vogt and James Hunt (ed.), Lectures on Man: His Place in Creation, and in the History of the Earth (1861), Author's Preface, 2-3.
Science quotes on:  |  Attack (41)  |  Attention (121)  |  Correction (31)  |  Credulity (11)  |  Deserving (4)  |  Innocence (10)  |  Lily (4)  |  Palm (5)  |  Poison (34)  |  Stimulation (15)  |  Weakness (36)

Every natural scientist who thinks with any degree of consistency at all will, I think, come to the view that all those capacities that we understand by the phrase psychic activities (Seelenthiitigkeiten) are but functions of the brain substance; or, to express myself a bit crudely here, that thoughts stand in the same relation to the brain as gall does to the liver or urine to the kidneys. To assume a soul that makes use of the brain as an instrument with which it can work as it pleases is pure nonsense; we would then be forced to assume a special soul for every function of the body as well.
— Carl Vogt
In Physiologische Briefe für Gelbildete aIle Stünde (1845-1847), 3 parts, 206. as translated in Frederick Gregory, Scientific Materialism in Nineteenth Century Germany (1977), 64.
Science quotes on:  |  Body (247)  |  Brain (213)  |  Capacity (64)  |  Consistency (23)  |  Crude (17)  |  Function (131)  |  Gall (3)  |  Instrument (95)  |  Kidney (14)  |  Liver (15)  |  Natural Science (90)  |  Nonsense (41)  |  Phrase (29)  |  Psychic (6)  |  Soul (166)  |  Thought (546)  |  Understanding (325)  |  Urine (11)

The whole inherent pride of human nature revolts at the idea that the lord of the creation is to be treated like any other natural object. No sooner does the naturalist discover the resemblance of some higher mammals, such as the ape, to man, than there is a general outcry against the presumptuous audacity that ventures to touch man in his inmost sanctuary. The whole fraternity of philosophers, who have never seen monkeys except in zoological gardens, at once mount the high horse, and appeal to the mind, the soul, to reason, to consciousness, and to all the rest of the innate faculties of man, as they are refracted in their own philosophical prisms.
— Carl Vogt
From Carl Vogt and James Hunt (ed.), Lectures on Man: His Place in Creation, and in the History of the Earth (1861), 10.
Science quotes on:  |  Ape (42)  |  Appeal (45)  |  Audacity (5)  |  Consciousness (82)  |  Creation (242)  |  Discovery (680)  |  Fraternity (4)  |  High (153)  |  Human Nature (60)  |  Idea (580)  |  Inherent (30)  |  Lord (16)  |  Mammal (30)  |  Mind (760)  |  Monkey (40)  |  Naturalist (54)  |  Outcry (3)  |  Philosopher (166)  |  Philosophy (259)  |  Presumption (13)  |  Pride (64)  |  Prism (6)  |  Reason (471)  |  Refraction (9)  |  Resemblance (21)  |  Revolt (2)  |  Soul (166)

We may therefore say in the future, strictly within the limits of observation, that in certain respects the fossil species of a class traverse in their historical succession metamorphoses similar to those which the embryos undergo in themselves. … The development of a class in the history of the earth offers, in many respects, the greatest analogy with the development of an individual at different periods of his life. The demonstration of this truth is one of the most beautiful results of modern paleontology.
— Carl Vogt
From Embryologie des Salmones, collected in L. Agassiz, Poissons d'Eau Douce de l’Europe Centrale (1842), 260. Translated by Webmaster using Google Translate, from the original French, “On pourra donc dire à l'avenir, en restant rigoureusement dans les limites de l'observation, qu'à certains égards, les espèces fossiles d'une classe parcourent dans leur succession historique des métamorphoses semblables à celles que subissent les embryons en se développant … Le développement d’une classe dans l’histoire de la terre offre, à divers égards, la plus grande analogie avec le dévelopment d’un individu aux différentes époques de sa vie. La démonstration de cette vérité est un des plus beaux résultat de la paléontologie moderne.”
Science quotes on:  |  Analogy (60)  |  Beautiful (144)  |  Classification (87)  |  Demonstration (86)  |  Development (289)  |  Different (186)  |  Embryo (23)  |  Evolution (535)  |  Fossil (113)  |  History Of The Earth (3)  |  Individual (221)  |  Life (1131)  |  Metamorphosis (5)  |  Modern (162)  |  Observation (450)  |  Paleontology (30)  |  Period (66)  |  Result (389)  |  Species (221)  |  Succession (45)  |  Truth (928)

See also:
  • 5 Jul - short biography, births, deaths and events on date of Vogt's birth.

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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